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Creation of Life 



By Carman Bradley

Nothing makes sense in biology except in the light of evolution.[i] 

             Russian-American biologist Theodosuis Dobzhansky

Scripture states that God created life on earth and secularists argue life came about by accident.  Cornelius Hunter cites that the Universal Genetic Code leads evolutionists to conclude that all life shares a single origin.[ii]  Virtually all living organisms, from primitive bacteria to plants to animals, make use of the same code.  Notwithstanding the intricacies of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) macromolecule and its universal application, evolutionists view the code as the result of a historical event, what DNA codiscoverer and Nobel laureate Francis Crick called a “frozen accident.”  The code, they say, originally evolved as the result of blind forces, but once established, it was strongly maintained.  It is difficult to overestimate evolutionists’ confidence in biochemical homologies.  According to the National Academy of Sciences, the “evidence for evolution from molecular biology has opened up dramatic new veins of support” for evolution, and the theory is “now beyond a reasonable doubt.”[iii]

Let us return to the micro-challenge of proving spontaneous generation here on earth before succumbing to the temptation of a macro-hypothesis, popularized by Carl Sagan and proclaimed by the National Academy of Sciences.  Dr. Francis Crick, who received the Nobel Prize for discovering the DNA double-helix structure, is a credible authority on the extraordinary complexity of the living cell.  Crick and his associate, Leslie Orgel, at California’s Salk Institute, are quite committed to the theory of evolution, yet they cannot accept the usual explanation that the first self-replicating cell came together spontaneously by chance.  Ian Taylor explains:

They concede that statistically it would just never happen.  In 1973 Crick and Orgel seriously proposed that life initially appeared on earth as a direct act of ‘seeding’ by intelligent life from another planet, and they call their theory directed panspermia.[iv]  As far out as this may be, and it is distinctly Lowellian Darwinism, the proposal is based on two observations: First, life as we know it depends on traces of the rare element molybdenum, and it is argued that it would more likely have evolved on a planet in which the element was more abundant.  Second, there is but a single genetic code to all life, and , if it had developed by chance in ‘some primordial ocean,’ then with multiple chance beginnings, more than one genetic code would be expected.  The idea that life could have arrived by meteorite is rejected, because of the radiation damage during its long space journey.  The field of possibility, therefore, has been narrowed to the choice between miraculous supernatural creation and life having been deliberately brought to earth by intelligent extraterrestrial beings in the remote past.  Crick has placed his bet on the unprovable idea that somewhere in time and space there existed conditions on another planet more conducive to the spontaneous generation of life on our planet under any possible conditions.[v]

It has been discovered more recently, principally by Crick, that the DNA spiral-helix molecules found within the nucleus of every cell are the “blueprints” for cell building, but these molecules, work in a symbiotic relationship with the RNA molecules, which transfer the information from within the nucleus to various parts of the cell.  Only by this relationship can molecules derived from food be directed to where they are needed for cell building.  In this case the theory requires that we believe that two extremely complicated molecules, DNA and RNA, which must fit together perfectly, have each evolved separately and then appeared at the same time and in the same place in order to work together.  Evidently, this was seen to be an appeal to the miraculous and went beyond Crick’s credulity.[vi]

Sir Bernard Lovell, the British astronomer, makes the following statement in his book In the Centre of Immensities (1919):

The operation of pure chance would mean that within half a billion year period the organic molecules in the primeval seas might have to undergo 1050 (one followed by fifty zeroes) trial assemblies in order to hit upon the correct sequence.  The possibility of such a chance occurrence leading to the formation of one of the smallest protein molecules is unimagibably small.  Within the boundary conditions of time and space we are considering it is effectively zero.[vii]

In 1981, Sir Fred Hoyle wrote in his article “The Big Bang in Astronomy,” for New Scientist:

Anyone with even a nodding acquaintance with the Rubik cube will concede the near impossibility of a solution being obtained by a blind person moving the cube faces at random.  Now imagine 1050 blind persons (standing shoulder to shoulder, these would more than fill our entire planetary system) each with a scrambled Rubik cube and try to conceive of the chance of them all simultaneously arriving at the solved form.  You then have the chance of arriving by random shuffling (random variation) of just one of the many biopolymers on which life depends.  The notion that not only the biopolymers but the operating program of a living cell could be arrived at by chance in a primordial soup here on Earth is evidently nonsense of a high order.  Life must plainly be a cosmic phenomenon.[viii]

Mathematically, there appears to be two belief options – Creation or Extraterrestrial Seeding – although a visitor from outer space must in the end answer for its origin.  One wonders why an extraterrestrial species (which by “chance” had assumed the evolutionary lead in the then 9 billion-year-old universe) would leave their planet, discover ours in its then primordial soup state (some 4.6 billion years ago) and then choose to deposit apparently “one” replicating cell (a tiny protozoan) and leave.  This is not to diminish the complexity of such a cell or its value as a gift to earth.  Michael Denton describes the complexity behind even the simplest bacteria:

Although the tiniest bacteria cells are incredibly small, weighing less than 10-12 gms, each is in effect a veritable micro-minaturized factory containing thousands of exquisitely designed pieces of intricate molecular machinery, made up altogether of one hundred thousand million atoms, far more complicated than any machine built by man and absolutely without parallel in the non-living world.[ix]

Furthermore, the DNA strands in each cell are tightly coiled and condensed thousands of times inside the nucleus.  The space between each letter in the genetic code (each rung in the double helix) is 0.34 nanometer, less than one billionth of a meter.  The DNA in a human cell is squeezed into a nucleus about 0.005 millimeter in diameter, and yet fully extended, the DNA of a single cell would stretch to about 2 meters, or 6 feet.  The period at the end of this sentence would encompass about 200 cells, or 400 meters of DNA.  The total amount of DNA in the 100 trillion cells in the human body laid end to end would run to the sun and back about twenty times.[x]

The process of converting the instructions carried by a gene into the corresponding protein relies on an intermediary called RNA.  In any given cell, only a small proportion of genes are turned on at any one time.  An enzyme called RNA polymerate reads along the sequence of the gene, producing a complementary strand of RNA that is escorted out of the nucleus and into the body of the cell.  Molecular machines called ribosomes clasp the RNA strand and read the base code in triplets, or codon.  At each codon, the appropriate amino acid is carried to the ribosome by an adaptor RNA molecule that specifically recognizes each codon.  One by one, the string of amino acids that constitute the protein are linked until the complete protein is assembled.[xi]

If extraterrestrials were hoping for and seeking other intelligent life with which to communicate, 4.6 billion years seems a long gestation period.  This is not like making an investment with an amortization for the grandchildren.  Imagine NASA asking for funding for a project with a payoff in four billion years.  Moreover, if we believe as most evolutionists do, that the whole natural selection endeavor (which created mankind) has historically hung upon the random act of some primates consistently choosing over hundreds of millennia to eat hard nuts and seeds (requiring technology to crack) while roaming the savannas (searching on foot) rather than choosing, as their relatives the chimpanzees have, to uphold the easy life based on the soft fruits of the forest, the theory becomes mind-boggling.  Who and what are we to believe?

This theory of human life originating from outer space was seen by most as removing the problem rather than providing a solution.  Says Taylor:

It was almost taboo to speak of spontaneous generation occurring on earth, and yet philosophically it raised the awful specter that if life didn’t arise spontaneously, then it must have been purposefully created.  There was no third alternative.[xii]

For secularists, this conclusion leaves only the “seeded” option:

The stark reality of mathematical probability, however, dashes even this slim hope, because it is, after all, the origin of life and not the intergalactic carrier that is crucial.  Two of England’s leading scientists, Hoyle and Wickramasinghe (1981)[xiii], working independently of each other came to the conclusion that the chance of life appearing spontaneously from nonlife anywhere in the universe was effectively zero.  Surprisingly, these authors, respectively an agnostic and a Buddhist, concluded the origin of life demands the existence of God to have created it.  The London Daily Express (14 August 1981) headlined their conclusion: ‘Two skeptical scientists put their heads together and reach an amazing conclusion: There must be a God.’  As far as the dedicated humanist is concerned, this answer to life’s riddle is totally unacceptable…[xiv]

James Coppedge estimates after speeding up the rate of bonding a trillion times:

The probability of a single protein molecule being arranged by chance is 1 in 10161, using all atoms on earth and allowing all the time since the world began…For a minimum set of the required 239 protein molecules for the smallest theoretical life, the probability is 1 in 10119,879.  It would take 19119,841 years on the average to get a set of such proteins.  That is 10,119,831 times the assumed age of the earth and is a figure with 119,831 zeroes.[xv]

Carl Woese, a physicist turned evolutionary biologist at the University of Illinois, placed another nail into the evolutionist model by advocating that life has three domains and not two.  After surveying the genetic similarities of bacterial species he claimed that two of these domains belonged to microbes, which was Darwinian heresy.  His results published in 1977, were widely reported in the popular press.  Editorial writers proclaimed that Woese had revealed a third kingdom of life on earth, a strange alien organism that appeared to be neither animal nor vegetable.  Writes Kevin Davies:

By contrast the reaction of the established evolutionary experts was hardly fit to print.  According to one observer, Woese’s fanciful proposition ‘was greeted with wrath and ridicule, not to mention abuse.’  It was bad enough that Woese was an outsider practicing an obtuse technique that few others could master.  Worse, he was essentially arguing that the alleged experts in the field of evolution had completely overlooked a huge limb of the tree of life.[xvi]

Woese’s theory is rooted in a discovery found in 1982, when a research submarine named Alvin combed the floor of the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja California, in search of new forms of life.  Two miles beneath the surface, Alvin rummaged around the base of a thermal vent known as a white smoker – a torrid emanation from the netherworld.  The prize catch from the plutonic depths of the Pacific was a methane-producing microbe that thrived in temperatures around a balmy 85º C, 200 atmospheres of pressure, and no traces of oxygen.  This curious organism, which had never been seen before, was named Methanococcus jannaschii, in honor of its chief waste product and the expedition leader, Holger Jannasch.

Genomic pioneer and entrepreneur Craig Venter was fascinated by the controversy between Woese and orthodox evolutionists.  He could identify with Woese’s plight:

…a researcher brave enough to risk ridicule by challenging evolution’s central dogma while yearning for the respect and recognition of his peers.[xvii]

Venter knew that his sequencing technology could settle this contentious debate by comparing genome to genome.  And so, in collaboration with Woese, he selected the genome of M. jannaschii as the next contestant for the genome sequencing treatment.  The results complicate the Darwinian hypothesis:

The first archaea genome sequence vindicated Woese’s long insistence that the archaea represent a third limb of the tree of life.  According to this view, life traces back some 3.5 billion years to LUCA – the last universal common ancestor.  LUCA divided into two nonnucleated cells, the bacteria and the archaea.  Millions of years later, the archaea gave rise to cells with a nucleus – the eukaryotes.  By a process of endosymbiosis (‘endo’ meaning internal, ‘symbiosis’ meaning a mutually beneficial relationship), these cells took up small bacteria that serve as mitochondria (the energy-producing factories) and chloroplasts (sites of photosynthesis in plants), vital cogs in the evolution of animals and plants.  Richard Fortey put it like this: ‘We are one tribe with bacteria that live in hot springs, parasitic barnacles, vampire bats and cauliflowers.  We all share a common ancestor.’

However, even Woese concedes that the tree of life is not quite this straightforward.  The branches of the evolutionary tree are much more gnarled than we might expect.  As we have seen, archaea possess bacterial genes, eukaryotes possess bacterial genes, and bacteria possess archaea genes.  This was borne home when Venter’s group sequenced the genome of Thermotoga maritima, a rod-shaped bacterium first discovered in Vulcano, Italy, in a 80º C marine sediment.  The sequence of this genome revealed a surprisingly archaea-like organization, with about a quarter of its genes related to archaea.  This example, and many others, suggests that in addition to vertical transfer of genes from generation to generation, a high degree of lateral gene transfer – the process by which bacteria can spread genes for antibiotic resistance – has occurred during evolution.  It suggests that life may have evolved from a small population of primitive cells with shuffling genes.  To some, this is an unwelcome complication in evolutionary theory.  Observes evolutionary biologist Ford Doolittle, ‘It is as if we have failed at the task that Darwin set for us: delineating the unique structure of the tree of life.’ [xviii]

Even the Raelian Movement, whose corporation CLONAID, has declared the first few cloned humans, claim “Evolution: a myth,” quoting scientific evidence for their claim.  Their web site states:

Curiously, during the month of January 1996, a prestigious French magazine ‘La Recherche’ published an article titled ‘The Drawbacks of Darwinism.’  Following this the magazine published a virulent debate on the question confirming the fact that many scientists question evolution.  Some even went so far as to say that the theory is not scientific, and that ‘it rests on a sophism, a circular reasoning: “the environment selects animals most apt to survive, and we call the most apt animals those which survive![xix]

Under the title “An anti-evolutionist system in our genes,” Raelians argue for the vision of what they call “scientific creationism”:

Perhaps the most awkward question today for the theory of evolution is the one raised by…the DNA repair mechanism. This has been found to be common to all mammals and repairs damaged DNA. If the damage is too great to repair, it organizes the cell's self-destruction.

Therefore if any defect in the transcription of the genetic code arises, (the foundation on which evolution is based) then this repair or programmed cell death mechanism will remove such a mutation. If not, then the organism as a whole will die of cancer.

This control system is clearly present to avoid all mutation. Thus, if this system is common to all mammals, according to the theory of Evolution, it should also be present in the common ancestors of mammals.

If it were present in our ancestors, how were they able to diversify in order to render so many different species?  This is clearly a major contradiction which can only put a serious doubt on the theory of evolution.[xx]

The credibility of the model of unprompted generation of life on earth followed by chance micro-mutations driving macro-evolutionary processes have been under continuous controversy since its genesis.  Two centuries before Reverend William Paley, refuted the notion of a Godless universe.  A theologian and author of Natural Theology – or Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity Collected from the Appearances of Nature, published in 1802, he is the best-known early defender of the “Argument from Design” and thus the existence of God.  Richard Dawkins, author of The Blind Watchmaker, challenges Paley’s notion of natural theology with his own humanist, evolutionist belief system:

Paley’s argument is made with passionate sincerity and is informed by the best biological scholarship of his day, but it is wrong.  The analogy between telescope and eye, between watch and living organism, is false.  All appearances to the contrary, the only watchmaker in nature is the blind forces of physics, albeit deployed in a very special way.  A true watchmaker has foresight: he designs his cogs and springs, and plans their interconnections, with a future purpose in his mind’s eye.  Natural selection, the blind, unconscious, automatic process which Darwin discovered, and which we now know as the explanation for the existence and apparently purposeful form of life, has no purpose in mind.  It has no mind and no mind’s eye.  It does not plan for the future.  It has no vision, no foresight, no sight at all.  If it can be said to play the role of watchmaker in nature, it is the blind watchmaker.[xxi]

The reader should be wary of accepting Dawkins’ level of conviction as an indication of proof from scientific facts.  First, his notion that “a true watchmaker has foresight” is a reflection of his own assumptions about a God and his own interpretation of what life should really be.  He is contending that a true watchmaker should have done a better job of life on Earth.  Such negative theology was a consistent theme for Darwin, and it remains popular with today’s evolutionists.  For illustration, Darwin thought orchids seemed to be made of spare parts rather than individually created.  Evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould sums up the argument as follows:

Orchids manufacture their intricate devices from the common components of ordinary flowers, parts usually fitted for very different functions.  If God had designed a beautiful machine to reflect his wisdom and power, surely he would not have used a collection of parts generally fashioned for other purposes.  Orchides were not made by an ideal engineer; they are jury-rigged from a limited set of available components.  Thus, they must have evolved from ordinary flowers.[xxii]

Cornelius G. Hunter, author of Darwin’s God: Evolution and the Problem of Evil, observes:

Notice how easy it is to go from a religious premise to a scientific-sounding conclusion.  The theory of evolution is confirmed not by a successful prediction but by the argument that God would never do such a thing.  Evolutionists have no scientific justification for these expectations, for they did not come from science.  They are part of a personal religious belief and as such are not amenable to scientific debate.[xxiii]

Darwin did not liberate biology from metaphysical thought as sometimes claimed – he merely switched the metaphysics.  What was right is now wrong, and vice versa.  The evolutionist use of homology as an argument against creation requires evolutionists to place their own interpretation on the metaphysical realm.[xxiv]

In further defending Creationism, I shall now pursue the negative-evidence tactic of Darwinists (highlighted above by Hunter).  In the remainder of this article five evolutionist theories, which have been proven false and have led to a general, although under-publicized, rejection of original Darwinism and neo-Darwinism, will be studied.  In order these erroneous evolutionist theories are: speciation, spontaneous generation, life on Mars, embryology/homology, vestigial organs, and mutation theory.   The latter topic includes discussion of living fossils, genomics and the currently popular theory called “punctuated equilibria.”

According to G. Ledyard Stebbins, the acceptance of Darwin’s theory of natural selection reached it’s lowest ebb around 1926.  At the time biology students were often asked to read the most authoritative history of biology, by Erik Nordenskiöld.  He wrote:

To raise the theory of natural selection, as often been done, to the rank of a natural law, comparable to the law of gravity established by Newton is, of course, completely irrational, as time has already shown; Darwin’s theory of the origin of species was long ago abandoned.  Other facts established by Darwin are all of second-rate value.[xxv]

Instead of small changes accumulating and resulting in large changes, the small changes appear to be bounded.  One can successfully bring about all sorts of features in a population of pigeons, dogs, horses, and the like, but there seem to be definite limits – one cannot modify pigeons to become dogs or horses.  If breeders found that change had limits, how did evolution produce it so copiously?  According to Hunter, Darwin argued that natural selection can produce all sorts of change that had eluded the breeders.  “Man selects only for his own good: Nature only for that of the being which she tends.”[xxvi]  Darwin triumphantly concluded:

As man can produce, and certainly has produced, a great result by his methodical and unconscious means of selection, what may not natural selection effect?[xxvii]

Darwin did the best he could to elevate the powers of natural selection over the breeder’s artificial selection, but in the end we are left with a mere possibility.  Experiments in mutation theory further undermined the concept of speciation.  The radioactive bombardment of fruit flies over a fifty year period only produced deformed and grotesque variations of fruit flies.

In 1988 Ernst Mayr wrote:

In spite of all the advances in genetics we are still almost entirely ignorant as to what happens genetically during speciation.[xxviii]

In his book The History of Creation [1876], Professor Ernst Haeckel wrote of the crucial need for “spontaneous generation” to support Darwin’s theory:

This hypothesis is indispensable for the consistent completion of the non-miraculous history of creation.[xxix]

Science on this matter has “evolved” over the years, however, as discussed at the start of this section the hypothesis still remains unproven and doubtful.  In 1861, only two years after Darwin’s Origin, Louis Pasteur dealt a severe blow to the idea of spontaneous generation, by proving that microbes, previously believed to have spontaneously developed, were in fact the result of airborne bacteria.  In 1864, only five weeks after Pasteur had delivered a particularly spirited and widely reported defense of divine creation as the only possible initiator of life, a meteorite fragment purportedly containing possible evidence of life from outer space was reported to have fallen at Orgueil in southwestern France.  The fragment was analyzed and said to show evidence of once living organisms.[xxx]  In 1871 Sir William Thomson, president of the  British Association, told the assembly that life had come to this planet from outer space, carried on “countless seed-bearing meteoritic stones.”[xxxi]

The Orgueil meteorite is technically referred to as a carbonaceous chondrite and is kept at the American Museum of Natural History.  In 1961 it was subjected to a mass spectroscopy.  The characteristics of the hydrocarbons detected very closely matched those of butter and terrestrial sediments.[xxxii]  Notwithstanding, the investigators concluded the mass was definitely a meteorite.  As recently as 1964, the popular Life Science Library series in its book The Cell declared that “cell-like fossils have been found in meteorites [Orgueil]” and concluded that this was a “startling indication that life might have been much more prolific on other worlds.”[xxxiii]  Taylor has determined that the image of the “cell” shown in the Life Science series was taken from a 1963 book by Brian Mason, titled Organic Matter From Space.  Even though, in his book Mason had explained that this supposed elemental life-form found in the Orgueil meteorite resembled nothing more than an hexagonal crystal of iron sulfate. [xxxiv]  At the time many claimed the Orgueil life-form was a hoax and in the end they were proved right.  Another chondrite fell in Australia in 1969.  This sample was more thoroughly investigated and found to contain twenty-three aromatic hydrocarbons of abiotic origin, i.e. they were not from anything living.[xxxv]

Italian astronomer Schiaparelli reignited the faith among many evolutionists in extraterrestrial life in 1877.  He claimed to have discovered “canali” on the planet Mars.  Schiaparelli’s work was continued in 1894 by Percival Lowell who developed a Martian life theory based on the discovery of some seven hundred canals which he named and published.[xxxvi]  This life on Mars thesis gained science fiction notoriety when H.G. Wells wrote War of the Worlds in 1898.  More recently, the torch sustaining the theory of extraterrestrial life had been taken up by Carl Sagan.  The basis for the current hope derives from a statistical hypothesis that contends - given chance life on Earth and the size of the universe; the mathematical probability of extraterrestrial life elsewhere is near certainty.  The theory says given a very large number of stars in each galaxy; given the enormous number of galaxies in the universe; given some greater than zero probability that a star has a so-called “solar system”; given some measurable probability that a portion of these solar systems may contain another planet similar to earth (conducive to life); and factor in billions of potentially “creative” years, extraterrestrial intelligent life then becomes a certainty.

Adherents now search the universe awaiting contact.  Interestingly, the lack of contact and the scarcity of life forms on nearby planets has not diminished evolutionist enthusiasm.  In any case, one must wonder if discovery of some extraterrestrial life form need diminish creationist zeal.  Critical to the secular worldview is the absence of a divine Creator, dabbling in the unfolding events of time.  Predictably, the premise that God is absent, that the start of life was a chance event, and evolution a series of random purposeless events, has lead scientists such as Francis Crick to theorize that the biological patterns behind DNA found on earth would likely be unrelated to those elsewhere:

The principles enshrined in the periodic table are truly universal, signifying the invariant properties of chemical elements dispersed throughout the universe.  But if life exists on other planets, there is little reason to believe that the genetic code adheres to the same pattern as it does on earth, for chance played a major part in the origin of life as we know it.[xxxvii]

One wonders what would be the science community’s response to the discovery of life elsewhere, micro-biologically organized as ours.  Would an alien with 40 percent primate DNA or a microorganism off a meteorite with 80 percent similarity to a terrestrial species silence the “random chance, purposeless universe” apostles?  I doubt it.

Tim M. Berra, described ‘embryology” in his 1990 book Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: A Basic Guide to the Facts in the Evolution Debate:

Comparative embryology is another field of study that reflects evolution.  There are many features of embryonic development common to related animals, and the closer the relationship, the more similar the development.  The early embryos of all vertebrate classes (fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals) resemble one another markedly.  The embryos of vertebrates that do not respire by means of gills (reptiles, birds and mammals) nevertheless pass through a gill-slit stage complete with aortic arches and a two chambered heart, like those of a fish.  The passage through a fishlike stage by the embryos of the higher vertebrates is not explained by creation, but is readily accounted for as an evolutionary relic.  The higher vertebrates, including humans, carry a number of ancestral genes that are switched on and off during ontogeny (the developmental process from a fertilized egg to adult).[xxxviii]

Many evolutionists claimed homologies in the developing stages of life where organisms construct themselves.  This self-construction process can be quite elaborate.  Very different animals have similar embryos that apparently are not designed for their respective unique requirements.  Darwin concluded that the resemblances were homologous.  He claimed they reveal the structure of evolutionary ancestors:

As the embryo often shows us more or less plainly the structure of the less modified and ancient progenitor of the group, we can see why ancient and extinct forms so often resemble in their adult state the embryos of existing species of the same class.  Agassiz believes this to be a universal law of nature; and we may hope hereafter to see the law proved out.[xxxix]

What a boon this would be for evolutionists.  If true, the law could yield a plethora of data.  Where the ancient fossil record had its gaps, perhaps modern embryos could fill in the picture.  This notion set the stage for Haeckel’s famous dictum “ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny,” otherwise known as the biogenetic law.[xl]  In its strong form, it states that the early development of an individual is a brief and rapid review of its evolutionary history.  In Ontogeny and Phylogeny Harvard professor Stephen Jay Gould points out that the German scientist Wilhelm His exposed such “shocking dishonesty” on the part of Ernst Haeckel that it rendered him unworthy “to be counted as a peer in the company of earnest researchers.”[xli]  Sir Gavin de Beer of the British Natural History Museum was quoted as saying:

Seldom has an assertion like that of Haeckel’s ‘theory of recaptitulation,’ facile, tidy, and plausible, widely accepted without critical examination, done so much harm to science.[xlii]

Haeckel not only utilized deceptive data but also used doctored drawings to delude his devotees.[xliii]  His dishonesty was so blatant that he was charged with fraud by five professors and convicted by a university court at Jena.[xliv]  His forgeries were subsequently made public with the 1911 publication of Haeckel’s Frauds and Forgeries.

Writes Hank Hanegraaff:

Today the ‘recapitulations’ most commonly referred to by educators and evolutionists are the ‘gill slits’ in the ‘fish stage’ of human embryonic growth.  Dr. Henry Morris notes several reasons why this supposed recapitulation is entirely superficial.  First, the human embryo never at any time develops gill slits and therefore never goes through a ‘fish stage.’  Furthermore, a fetus does not have fins or any other fish structures.  Finally, every stage in the development of an embryo plays a crucial role in embryonic growth.  Thus, there are no redundant vestiges of former evolutionary phases.[xlv]

Although Haeckel’s frauds and forgeries were exposed more than half a century ago, modern studies in molecular genetics have further demonstrated the utter absurdity of the recapitulation theory.  The DNA for a fetus is not the DNA for a frog and the DNA for a frog is not the DNA for a fish.  Rather the DNA of a fetus, frog, fish, or falcon, for that matter, is uniquely programmed for reproduction after its own kind.[xlvi]

Incredibly, such facts have not stopped men like humanist Carl Sagan from affirming recapitulation.  In his 1977 book The Dragons of Eden, he wrote:

Haeckel held that in its embryological development, an animal tends to repeat or recapitulate the sequence that its ancestors followed during their evolution.  And indeed in human intrauterine development we run through stages very much like fish, reptiles, and non-primate mammals before we become recognizably human.  The fish stage even has gill slits, which are absolutely useless for the embryo who is nourished via the umbilical cord, but a necessity for human embryology: since gills were vital to our ancestors, we run through a gill stage in becoming human.[xlvii]

Writes Hanegraaff:

In The Dragons of Eden Sagan stated that determining when a fetus becomes human ‘could play a major role in achieving an acceptable compromise in the abortion debate.’[xlviii]  In his estimation the transition to human ‘would fall toward the end of the first trimester or near the beginning of the second trimester of pregnancy.’[xlix]

Shortly before Sagan died, Hanegraaff watched him reiterate this odd predilection.  “Without so much as blushing, he communicated his contention that a first-trimester abortion does not constitute the painful killing of a human fetus but merely the termination of a fish or frog.  Thus in Sagan’s world, Roe v. Wade provided the legal framework for the slaughter of multiplied millions of creatures rather than children.[l]

I challenge the reader to check out your child’s biology book or visit the nearest high school to see what our children are reading in their textbooks.  My middle daughter’s textbook (Biology, Ritter, Robert John, Nelson Canada, 1993) for grade eleven, in June 2003, introduces fossil evidence supporting “evolution” and then offers the following under the title “Indirect Evidence: Living Organisms”:

Direct evidence provided through fossils is not the only evidence that supports the theory of evolution.  Other evidence is readily observable in living organisms, which like fossils, show the links between existing forms and their ancestors….Embryology, the study of organisms in the early stages of development, offers valuable insight into the process of evolution.  During the late 1800s, scientists noted a striking similarity between the embryos of different species (see Figure 4.7) [here is seen the classic imagery of salamander, chicken, pig and human embryological development.]  At the time, a German embryologist, K.E. von Baer, wrote that because he had not labeled the two similar embryos he had in his possession, he was unable to identify whether they were the embryos of lizards, birds, or mammals.…Around the same time, another German biologist, E.H. Haeckel, advanced the theory of recapitulation, more commonly expressed as ‘ontogeny recapitulates (repeats) phylogeny.’  In other words, every organism repeats its evolutionary development in its own embryology.  The theory is applicable only in a very broad sense.  Scientists believe that many structures in an embryo are similar to those found in common ancestors. [li]

If one glaring error of commission is not enough, the same Biology text raises the homology argument in combination with embryology in defense of evolution:

When the anatomies of various organisms are studied and compared, the suggestion that organisms with similar structures evolved from a common ancestor becomes increasingly obvious.  For example, the flipper of a seal, the leg of a pig, the wing of a bat, and the human arm all have the same basic structure and the same pattern of early growth.  These homologous structures in some cases serve different functions.

However, they are sufficiently similar to suggest that they have the same evolutionary origin.  Many other examples of homologies can be found in living organisms.  For example, the Eustachian tube, which leads from the middle ear to the mouth of humans is homologous to one of the gill slits of fish, and the middle-ear bones of humans are homologous to certain jawbones of fish.

The homology argument is quite general, for it says that any pattern found in nature was produced by evolution.  Hunter refutes this theory:

Evolution is supposed to have created all this diversity.  It seems to be capable of designing and implementing every conceivable biological design.  Yet on the other hand, when a pattern is found – a similarity between species – this is supposed to be an example of how stingy evolution can be.  Evolution we are told, favors practicality over optimality.  Instead of designing the perfect species, it uses spare parts that are available from ancestral species.  On the one hand, evolution seems to have tremendous creative powers, bringing forth the millions of species with all their diversity; yet on the other hand, it is pragmatic.  It exerts its creative powers only to the extent that is necessary, often settling for less than optimum designs in the name of expediency.[lii]

Consider the streamlined torpedo shapes, tall dorsal fins, and broad tails found in sharks, swordfishes, and dolphins.  None of these are closely related, because they belong in disparate groups (sharks with the cartilaginous fishes, swordfishes with the bony fishes, dolphins with the mammals).  Therefore evolutionists believe they are only distantly related, and so their similarities must be analogous, not homologous.  Hunter cites Futuyma in further explanation of evolutionist rejection of any possibility of God’s hand in nature:

The facts of embryology, the study of development, also make little sense except in the light of evolution.  Why should species that ultimately develop adaptations for utterly different ways of life be nearly indistinguishable in their early stages?  How does God’s plan for humans and sharks require them to have almost identical embryos?

Take any major group of animals, and the poverty of imagination that must be ascribed to a Creator becomes evident.

When we compare the anatomies of various plants or animals, we find similarities and differences where we should least expect a Creator to have supplied them.[liii]

Here again one sees scientific pre-supposition and negative theology.  Evolutionists further believe that certain homologous structures have, over the course of evolution, lost their original purpose.  The list of such organs in humans might include wisdom teeth, coccyx (tail vertebrae), ear-wiggling muscles, and the appendix.  Says Hunter, at the molecular level, evolutionists also believe they have identified vestigial structures in the form of pseudogenes – DNA sequences that resemble genes but appear to be nonfunctional.  Evolutionists believe pseudogenes are the remnants of ancient genes, no longer in use but carried along as access baggage.[liv]  [More on DNA later in this article.]

Like the vagueness of homologies, the argument from vestigial organs appears persuasive, yet it too suffers from the lack of objective measure.  According to Hunter, the problem is that in order to identify an organ as vestigial, we need to measure its adaptive value.  When we find that an organ makes a positive contribution to fitness, then we disprove the vestigial claim.  It is not surprising that the history of vestigial organs involves shrinking lists:

In 1895 Ernst Weidersheim published a list of eighty-six organs in the human body that he supposed to be vestigial.  The vast majority of items on Weidersheim’s list are now known to be functioning organs.  The pineal gland, for example, is now known to be part of the endocrine system…Weidersheim also claimed the coccyx, a short collection of vertebrae at the end of the spine, was vestigial.  But the coccyx is the attachment point for several important muscles and ligaments.  And Weidersheim claimed the thyroid and thymus glands and appendix were vestigial, but important functions for all three have since been discovered.[lv]

In 1981 zoologist S.R. Scadding analyzed Weidersheim’s claims and had difficulty finding a single item that was not functional, although some are so only in a minor way.[lvi]  Hunter said Scadding concluded that the “vestigial organs” provide no evidence for evolutionary theory.  Furthermore, Hunter argues:

When evolutionists identify a structure as vestigial, it seems that it is the theory of evolution that is justifying the claim, rather than the claim justifying the theory of evolution.[lvii]

If a penguin’s wing is highly efficient for swimming, then why should we think it is vestigial, aside from simply presupposing it was formed by evolution?  The idea that vestigial structures can in fact be perfectly useful makes the argument subjective.  A character trait that is fully functional for one observer may only partially function for another observer, and may be considered inefficient by yet another observer.  And so we are again left with evidence for evolution that is subjective.

The strategy in presumptions about what God should or should not do, is that if opposing theories can be falsified (in this case Creationism), then the credibility of the alternative (evolutionism) is enhanced by the process of elimination.  Gould puts it this way:

Odd arrangements and funny solutions are the proof of evolution – paths that a sensible God would never tread but that a natural process, constrained by history, follows perforce.  No one understood this better than Darwin.  Ernst Mayr has shown how Darwin, in defending evolution, consistently turned to organic parts and geographic distributions that make the least sense.[lviii]

In presenting his theory, Darwin made a serious mistake in characterizing natural selection as a “struggle for life” or “struggle for existence.”  Natural selection acts as different individuals of the same population display different rates of survival and reproductive capacity.  Between such individuals, struggles to the death are rare.  In most species of fishes, insects, and plants, which constitute the majority of known organisms, active struggle between individuals belonging to the same population is completely absent.[lix]  A further misconception was the mistaken idea that mutations can establish the rate and direction of evolution and that bursts of rapid evolutionary change are produced by increases in the rate of mutations.  Some population geneticists have sought out “hot spots” on the earth’s surface where radiation intensities are unusually high, hoping to find evidence of rapid evolutionary rates caused by the effect of radiation increasing the mutation rate.  One particular spot for these investigations has been certain radioactive sands along the south coast of India.  The results of these investigations have been negative; increased rates of evolution have not been observed.  According to Stebbins, this is no surprise.  These results are to be expected on the basis of the “interaction-selection” hypothesis – another mutation of Darwinism:

Rapid evolution results from a strong challenge generated by a rapidly changing environment and the presence of organisms with gene pools capable of meeting the challenge.[lx]

About the turn of the century, a Dutch botanist named Hugo de Vries proposed his mutation theory as the mechanism of evolving one species into another.  However, de Vries’ theory was short-lived and by 1914 was discredited by Edward C. Jeffery who showed that all he had discovered in his experiments with primroses was a previously unknown variety within the species.[lxi]  He thought that the new variety was a “mutant” or new species.

The idea of “mutations” did set the stage for further work.  During the 1920’s it was discovered that emissions from radioactive substances, such as radium, X rays, and even ultraviolet light, sometimes caused mutant offspring when parents had been exposed to this kind of radiation.  The word “mutant” in this sense usually meant a change for the worse; de Vries, however, used the word to mean a change for the better.  A number of scientists saw this as a possibility for producing new species and set about to prove this using the common fruit fly, Drosophilia melanogaster, which reproduces fairly rapidly and enables mutants to be studied over many generations in a short time.  After half a century of work on fruit flies bombarded with all kinds of radiation, many mutant types have been produced with different colored eyes, with different sizes of eyes, with no eyes, and with variations in wings, but throughout, the creatures have steadfastly remained fruit flies.  No new species has ever been produced, while mutants have invariably been deformed or in some way are less than normal.  This is perhaps not too surprising when one thinks of the lead-shield protection given to our reproductive organs when we have an X ray examination, since this is specifically to prevent mutant or damaged offspring.  There is a tendency in biological textbooks to make supposition appear as fact by suggesting that some mutations have been for the better by increased wing muscles, etc., and the reader should be careful to understand what has, in fact, been observed and what is being supposed.[lxii]

By the 1930s the classical Darwinian theory was being supplanted by the neo-Darwinian theory in which it was thought that mutant genes of a favorable type played a decisive part.  The mutant genes were believed to be produced by radiation such as cosmic rays rather than X rays.  In 1942 Julian Huxley coined the term modern synthesis for the same idea, and it is the neo-Darwinian theory or synthetic theory that has dominated evolutionary thinking for the past forty years.  The theory proposes that there is the infrequent appearance of a mutation where by chance the individual is more favorably suited to its environment.  While admitted to be rare, the mutant then finds an exactly matching mate; since they are slightly better fitted to the environment, it is supposed they tend to have more offspring than normal variants.  This chance process is repeated over countless generations, and the small mutant changes accumulate and eventually lead to the appearance of an entirely new species.[lxiii]

The neo-Darwinian school began to have its dissenters in the 1960s.  The feeling at the time was marked by the Wistar Institute Symposium held in Philadelphia, in April 1966, where the chairman, Sir Peter Medwar, made the following opening remarks:

The immediate cause of this conference is a pretty widespread sense of dissatisfaction about what has come to be thought as the accepted evolutionary theory in the English-speaking world, the so-called neo-Darwinian theory. [lxiv]

By 1980 the neo-Darwinian theory was struggling for survival in the battle of belief against a rising new theory for the mechanism of evolution.  The latest theory is the preferred choice of paleontologists Niles Eldredge and Stephen Gould, which they call “punctuated equilibria.  Taylor writes:

In 1980 an historic conference was held in Chicago’s Field Museum and attended by 160 of the world’s top paleontologists, anatomists, evolutionary geneticists, and developmental biologists.  The content of the conference directly challenged the uncertain position of the neo-Darwinian theory, which had dominated evolutionary biology for the previous decades….The most important outcome of the meeting on which most were agreed was that the small changes from generation to generation within a species can in no way accumulate to produce a new species.  This was a radical and major departure from the faith and, in principle, as much a departure as the Vatican’s Second Council (1962-65) decision to allow Roman Catholics to eat meat on Friday!  Yesterday, a man could fail an exam or lose a job for not subscribing to the neo-Darwinian mechanism.  Today that unbelief is no longer worthy of excommunication.  The punctuated equilibria theory took a rather prominent position at this conference and, although not accepted by the die-hard neo-Darwinists, was generally well received and will undoubtedly occupy tomorrow’s textbooks as the new faith.[lxv]

Taylor also questions evolutionary explanations for extinction in the fossil record.  Why did many creatures die out when it seems that many like creatures have survived unchanged to present day.  Examples of “living fossils” include bats (who are exactly the same as their fossilized counterpart); the peccary; the Okapi (formerly known as Paleotragus); and the Coelacanth (a fish discovered to be living unchanged for as much as 100 million years).  Says Taylor:

It is no wonder that many of these discoveries cause controversy since their very existence challenges the faith in a theory that is based upon the assumption of enormous lengths of time.

Clearly, the problem of survival of some and not others, the extinction of many but not all, is a matter that has baffled evolution scientists ever since Darwin’s day, and there has yet to be a satisfactory explanation.[lxvi]

Today there also exists a genomic variant of vestigial hypothesis.  For evolutionist Kenneth R. Miller, pseudogenes, which he believes are nonfunctional, reveal a designer who “made serious errors, wasting millions of bases of DNA on a blueprint full of junk and scribbles.”[lxvii]  Evolutionists also argue that “God” would never use a universal pattern to create life.  Science in their eyes can only reveal the absence of a divine dynamic.  Hunter writes:

The genetic code and the DNA molecule are often cited as homologies that provide strong evidence for evolution….but there is a nonscientific interpretation of this evidence to which evolutionists often appeal.  They see the genetic code and DNA molecule as evidence against the doctrine of divine creation.  For example, Ridley claims that whereas the genetic code is preserved across species, it would not be if the species had been created independently.[lxviii]  Apparently Ridley believes that if there is a Creator, then he is obliged to use different genetic codes for the different species.  Similarly, Berra claims that the theory of evolution is ‘the only reasonable explanation’ for the fact that virtually all organisms carry their genetic information in the DNA molecule.[lxix]  In other words, this homology is not positive evidence in favor of evolution but rather negative evidence against the competition....It seems that for Ridley the notion of a ‘common architech’ does not support divine creation.  Of course, Ridley is entitled to whatever metaphysical view of God and the world he prefers, but he is using that view to support the theory of evolution, and this is the point.[lxx]

Evolutionists also claim they find supporting evidence in molecular biology.  But DNA reveals complexity, not evolution:

The existence of a code implies that two distinct entities – the sender and receiver – must know the code before the message is sent.  Therefore the existence of the DNA genetic code requires elaborate and coordinated sending and receiving machinery to be in the cell when a new individual is first conceived.

One might think that the twentieth century’s discovery of the genetic code and the associated cellular machinery might have cast some doubt on the theory of evolution.  For whereas earlier Darwinists might have hoped for simple beginnings, biology now knows that the cell not only is highly complex but also shows no signs of intermediate or abbreviated forms.  In a letter Darwin speculated of a warm little pond with a protein compound ready to undergo more complex changes.  Darwin’s credulous acceptance of a spontaneous increase in complexity set the tone for evolutions response to the twentieth century’s findings.  The immense complexity of the cell, including the genetic code and DNA molecule, were seen not as a challenge to evolution but as supporting evidence, despite the fact that evolution could not explain how such complexity could have originated…

Given the complexity of the cellular machinery and genetic code, it is not surprising that evolutionists do not have any detailed hypothesis about how it could have originated or evolved.  Instead they have a wide variety of speculative ideas.  Some evolutionists believe that the genetic code arose as a result of interactions with clay minerals.  Others try to explain it as a result of nonenzymatic chemical reactions, and yet others have tried stereochemical approaches.  An entirely different set of hypotheses holds that the genetic code arrived on earth from outer space, on meteors, comets, or spores driven by radiation pressure or even deliberately planted by extraterrestrial beings.[lxxi]

In addition to the origin of the code, there are a variety of hypotheses about how the modern code could have evolved from a simpler code.  Perhaps fewer amino acids were originally coded for, or perhaps the code distinguished between classes of amino acids rather than specific amino acids.  Perhaps the alphabet was originally binary, or perhaps the words were only two letters long.  Perhaps the original machinery was imprecise, so that a given gene did not always code for the same protein.[lxxii]

One thing evolutionists do agree on is that there is a great deal of uncertainty about how the genetic code came about.[lxxiii]  All the various hypotheses are grappling with the problem of finding a neo-Darwinian mechanism for the genetic code.  Because the code is chemically arbitrary, it holds no apparent competitive advantage over any other code.  Swap in another code and things would work just as well, and therefore Darwin’s law of natural selection is powerless to help explain the origin of the code…. The different hypotheses reveal fundamental differences of opinion.

It is natural for science to go through this stage in the early development of a theory.  The problem here is that evolutionists are claiming the genetic code as evidence for their theory when the code’s very existence remains unexplained.  We have no idea how the genetic code originated; therefore we can hardly appeal to its existence as evidence for evolution.

There is yet another reason that the universality of the genetic code is not strong evidence for evolution.  Simply put, the theory of evolution does not predict the genetic code to be universal (it does not, for that matter, predict the genetic code at all).  In fact, leading evolutionists such as Francis Crick and Leslie Orgel are surprised that there aren’t multiple codes in nature.[lxxiv]

Let us return to the latest evolutionary theory.  Stebbins in Darwin to DNA, Molecules to Humanity, explains the “punctuated equilibria” theory:

Traditionally, paleontologists have supported the hypothesis of gradual change, as did Darwin, the founder of modern evolutionary theory.  In recent years, however, a group of younger paleontologists, particularly Niles Eldredge, Stephen J. Gould, and Steven Stanley, have compiled a large body of evidence in support of the hypothesis of punctuated equilibria, or sudden bursts….These paleontologists maintain that, for many groups of organisms, the fossil record is now so well known that it is very unlikely to contain long gaps unrepresented by fossils…In addition, Eldredge and Gould have studied fossil sequences of snails in Bermuda in which gaps in a sequence are so recent that they are difficult to explain on the assumption that they represent periods during which no fossils were formed.

Steven Stanley has presented an even stronger argument against the hypothesis of extremely slow, gradual evolution.  He points out that the Darwinian theory of natural selection, which is accepted by most evolutionists…will not work unless a fairly rapid rate of evolution is postulated with reference to the geological time scale.[lxxv]

Stebbins asks, “if evolution is not continuous but is confined to periods of activity separated by long intervals of stability, then the next obvious question is, why?”  The answer Stebbins developed:

…populations do not evolve beyond the differentiation of races or closely related species unless they are faced with an environmental challenge.  Populations of organisms are basically conservative; if they can survive by staying in the habitat that they have always occupied and by exploiting it in the same way their ancestors did, they will do so.   They evolve new characteristics only when a changing environment forces them either to evolve or become extinct.[lxxvi]

Stephen Gould estimates that “more than 99.9 percent of species are not sources of great future diversity.”   Stebbins believes:

Evolution is not a universal property of life, like self-reproduction, growth, and individual response to the environment.  Its most significant changes result from unusual combinations of events.[lxxvii]

Many evolutionists, especially those who emphasize internal genetic changes or mutation probability rates as the primary limiting factors, look for a built-in “clock” that governs evolutionary rates.  However, George G. Simpson, the first paleontologist to apply careful statistical methods for interpreting the fossil record, showed that quantum bursts of evolution have taken place and that some species have remained constant during tens or hundreds of millions of years.  Says Stebbins:

Punctuated equilibrium is an extension of Simpson’s ideas that, if accepted, renders the search for generalized rates of evolution meaningless.[lxxviii]

He goes on to give his theory on the evolutionary variance:

Although at all times some populations are evolving somewhere in the world, evolution is not a continuous, inevitable property of all populations at all times and in all circumstances.  Most evolution, particularly of striking new adaptive types, occurs in quantum bursts that are triggered by challenges of a changing physical and biotic environment.  When such a challenge occurs, the populations exposed to it respond in one of three ways.  Most populations become extinct; some adjust to the new environment with minimal change in their hereditary makeup and thus persist with little evolution over millions of years; a few populations respond by evolving entirely new adaptive mechanisms.  Such newly adapted organisms may spread widely, evolve further, and evolve adaptations to still other new habitats.

What determines whether a population responds to a particular challenge by becoming extinct, continuing with little change, or evolving in a new direction?  Briefly, a population’s response depends on the nature of its hereditary variation, or gene pool, at the time of the challenge, and on the resulting kinds of interactions between the population and environment.[lxxix]

Whether by punctuated equilibria (a few steps) or by neo-Darwinian explanation (many steps), evolution still demands that the transition from one species to the next be in graduated steps.  This being so, there is still a major problem with the transition creatures who are really neither one species nor another.  Changing from reptile to bird, for example, would involve untold generations of reptiles with imperfectly formed scales in process of transition to birds with imperfectly formed features, and, in either case, the creatures would be vulnerable and certainly not the fittest to survive.  Darwin’s own natural selection would then be working against rather than for such imperfections ever evolving to become another, more perfect, kind of creature.  In spite of this evident drawback, general textbook descriptions usually lead the reader to believe that a reptile’s scales somehow got ragged at the edges, and, after many generations, became feathers.[lxxx]

This kind of argument, generally known as the argument from perfection, was well known to Darwin, who recognized that an organ was not only useless but an outright handicap if it was not close to being perfect.  However, he wrote confidently in the Origin:

If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous successive slight modifications my theory would absolutely break down.[lxxxi]

Shortly after he wrote this, he confided in a letter to American botanist Asa Gray:

I remember well [the] time when the thought of the eye made me cold all over.[lxxxii]

The idea that some intermediate state of two-eyed “partial” blindness (a work-in-process lasting millions of years) or a cyclopic link connecting the no-eyed model with the standard two-eyed model did not constrain Darwin’s enthusiasm for natural selection.  In Origin Darwin wrote:

To suppose that the eye…could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest possible degree.  Yet reason tells me, that if numerous graduations from a perfect and complex eye to one very imperfect and simple, each grade being useful to the possessor, can be shown to exist; if further, the eye does vary ever so slightly, and the variations be inherited, which is certainly the case;…then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, can hardly be considered real.[lxxxiii]

Says Taylor:

What Darwin has actually done in this statement is to use natural selection to justify natural selection and dismiss the difficulty as not real[lxxxiv].

Taylor likens Darwin’s approach to accepting the evolution of complex organs on faith:

By definition, faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see; in short, it is the same stuff that makes religion.[lxxxv]

Reductionist Richard Dawkins presents his analysis of the “evolution” of the eye through a series of questions:

[Question 2] Could the human eye have arisen directly from something slightly different from itself, something that we may call X?

…If the answer to Question 2 for any particular degree of difference is no, all we have to do is repeat the question for a smaller degree of difference sufficiently small to give us a ‘yes’ answer to Question 2.

X is defined as something very like a human eye, sufficiently similar that the human eye could plausibly have arisen by a single alteration in X.  If you have a mental picture of X and you find it impossible that the human eye could have arisen directly from it, this simply means that you have chosen the wrong X.  Make your mental picture of X progressively more like a human eye, until you find an X that you do find plausible as an immediate predecessor to the human eye.  There has to be one for you, even if your idea of what is plausible may be more, or less, cautious than mine!...By interposing a large enough series of Xs, we can derive the human eye from something not slightly different from itself but very different from itself.  We can ‘walk’ a large distance across ‘animal space,’ and our move will be plausible provided we take small-enough steps.[lxxxvi]

[Question 3] Is there a continuous series of Xs connecting the modern human eye to a state with no eye at all?

It seems to me clear that the answer has to be yes, provided only that we allow ourselves a sufficiently large series of Xs.  You might feel that 1,000 Xs is ample,…if 10,000 is not enough for you, allow yourself 100,000, and so on.  Obviously the available time imposes an upper ceiling on this game…Given, say, a hundred million Xs, we should be able to construct a plausible series of tiny graduations linking a human eye to just about anything!

[Question 4] Considering each member of the series of hypothetical Xs connecting the human eye to no eye at all, is it plausible that every one of them was made available by random mutation of its predecessor?

…My feeling is that, provided the difference between neighboring intermediates in our series leading to the eye is sufficiently small, the necessary mutations are almost bound to be forthcoming.  We are, after all, always talking about minor quantitative changes in an existing embryonic process.  Remember that, however complicated the embryological status quo may be in any given generation, each mutation change in the status quo can be very small.[lxxxvii]

[Question 5] Considering each member of the series of Xs connecting the human eye to no eye at all, is it plausible that every one of them worked sufficiently well that it assisted the survival and reproduction of the animals concerned?

…to quote Stephen Jay Gould, the noted Harvard paleontologist, as saying: ‘We avoid the excellent question, What good is 5 per cent of an eye? By arguing that the possessor of such an incipient structure did not use it for sight.

An ancient animal with 5 per cent of an eye might indeed have used it for something other than sight, but it seems to me at least as likely that it used it for 5 per cent vision.  And actually I don’t think it is an excellent question.  Vision that is 5 per cent as good as yours or mine is very much worth having in comparison with no vision at all.  So is 1 per cent vision better than total blindness.  And 6 per cent is better than 5, 7 per cent better than 6, and so on up the gradual, continuous series.[lxxxviii]

Notwithstanding that Dawkins’ gradualist approach can “connect the human eye to just about anything,” the term “punctuated equilibrium” was invented by German geneticist Richard Goldschmidt, after he conceded there was scant compelling evolutionary evidence for vertical transitional forms in the fossil record.  In his book The Material Basis of Evolution, he states:

The major evolutionary advances must have taken place in single large steps….The many missing links in the paleontological record are sought for in vain because they have never existed: ‘the first bird hatched from a reptilian egg.’[lxxxix]

Now according to Gould’s interpretation of punctuated equilibrium:

…a species does not arise gradually by the steady transformation of its ancestors; it appears all at once and ‘fully formed.’[xc]

Moreover, he confesses:

The extreme rarity of transitional forms persists as the trade secret of paleontology.[xci]

In sum it takes huge myopic insensibilities to confidently proclaim faith in evolution at the expense of creationism, knowing that it provides little more concrete evidence.  Francis Collins, a Christian and Director of the National Human Genome Institute supports this viewpoint:

When a scientist discovers something that no human knew before, but God did—that is both an occasion for scientific excitement and, for a believer, also an occasion for worship. It makes me sad that we have slipped into a polarized stance between science and religion that implies that a thinking human being could not believe in the value of both. There is no rational basis for that polarization. I find it completely comfortable to be both a rigorous scientist, who demands to see the data before accepting anybody's conclusions about the natural world, and also a believer whose life is profoundly influenced by the relationship I have with God.[xcii]

When are we going to level the educational playing field at schools so that our children can make their own informed choices?  One-sided instruction on “homophobia” and “Darwinian evolution” serves only humanist and secularist beliefs and agendas.

Again, to illustrate what I consider as unfair handling of the evolutionism-creationism issue in our public schools, I can cite family experience as recent as June 2003.  Lucy, our 17 year old (middle daugther), knowing that I have been investigating among many things, Darwinism for some two and a half years, asked for some help with a biology assignment.    One week before the end of the school year, she had one evening to respond to nine questions on evolution, four of which were:

(1) How does the theory of natural selection explain the development of long-necked giraffes? (2) Why is the study of evolution important?  (3) Write a paragraph that would defend the creation account of Scripture or discredit the theory of evolution. (Your personal belief may or may not be the same).  (4) Write a paragraph that would be the best defense of the theory of evolution or discredit the arguments of a creationist?  (Your personal belief may or may not be the same).

My wife takes the optimistic view that at least creationism and “Scripture” were mentioned at school.  She is likely correct that this inclusion is a curriculum concession in response to Christian activism of yore.  Lucy’s teacher may be well intending, however, I think reducing creationism to one paragraph, one evening, with one week before the end of the year is a sham.  Much more challenging and enlightening questions might be:

(1) Explain how the universe came into existence, if not miraculously; (2) After experiencing your eyesight blindfolded to 1 percent effectiveness, explain how an unbroken chain of random mutations continuously improved humankind’s prospects for survival and evolved our eyes from no sight to their present state; (3) Given the mathematical improbability of spontaneous generation (and Francis Crick’s conclusions on the origin of life on earth), explain how life did get started; (4) Given that Francis Collins, Director National Human Genome Institute, is a Christian, do you think his religious beliefs in anyway weaken his credibility as a scientist?

These questions should be posed at the beginning of the term and the students given the entire term to respond.  The answers should be discussed in the last week!

The next study topic (Origin of Mankind) will reveal considerable illogic in the evidence for humankind’s primate connection and the regretful legacy of hoax in sustaining its popularity over the decades.  It starts with a hypothesis built upon the discovery of a single tooth with extra thick enamel common to Ramapithecus and Australopithecines.   

Copyright © 2008 StandForGod.Org

[i] Wilmut et al., The Second Creation: Dolly and the Age of Biological Control (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000), p.17.

[ii] Hunter, Darwin’s God: Evolution and the Problem of Evil (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Brasso Press, 2001), p.24.

[iii] National Academy of Sciences, Science and Creationism: A view from the National Academy of Sciences, 2nd, ed. (Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1999), p.19.  Cited in Hunter, Darwin’s God, p.25.

[iv] Crick published the panspermia proposal in his Life Itself: It’s Origin and Nature (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1981).  See also Time, New York, 102, 10 September 1973, p.53. Cited in Ian Taylor, In the Minds of Men: Darwin and the New World Order (Toronto, TFE Publishing, 1991), pp.195 and 196.

[v] Taylor, In the Minds of Men: Darwin and the New World Order  (Toronto, TFE Publishing, 1991), pp.195 and 196.

[vi] Ibid., p.200.

[vii] Bernard Lovell, In The Centre of Immensities, (London: Hutchison, 1979), p.83.  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, pp.201 and 202.

[viii] Fred Hoyle, The big bang in astronomy,” New Scientist, London 92, 19 November 1981, p.571.  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.202.

[ix] Michael Denton, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis (Bethesda, Maryland: Alder & Alder, 1986), p.250.  Cited in Hank Hanegraaff, The Face That Demonstrates the Farce of Evolution  (Nashville, Tennessee: W Publishing Group, 1998), p.71.

[x] Kevin Davies, Cracking the Genome (New York: The free Press, 2001), pp.33 and 34.

[xi] Ibid., pp.56 and 57.

[xii] Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.196.

[xiii] Fred Hoyle and C. Wickramasinghe, Evolution From Space (London: J.M. Dent, 1981).  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, pp.202 and 203.

[xiv] Taylor, In the Minds of Men, pp.202 and 203..

[xv] James F. Coppedge, Evolution: Possible or Impossible? (Northridge, California: Probability Research In Molecular Biology, 1993), pp.110 and 114.  Cited in Hanegraaff, pp.71 and 72.

[xvi] Davies, p.113.

[xvii] Ibid.

[xviii] Ibid., p.115.

[xix] “Supporting Evidence: Science & Future (7),” “Evolution: a myth,”, 1/7/03.

[xx] “Embarrassing Questions for the Evolutionists,”, 1/7/03.

[xxi] Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker (London: Penguin Books, 1991), p.5.

[xxii] Stephen J. Gould, “The Panda’s Thumb,” in The Panda’s Thumb (New York: W.W. Norton, 1980), p.20. Cited in Hunter, Darwin’s God , p.47.

[xxiii] Hunter, Darwin’s God ,p.49.

[xxiv] Ibid.

[xxv] G. Ledyard Stebbins, Darwin to DNA, Molecules to Humanity (San Francisco: W.H. Freeman and Company, 1982), p.46.

[xxvi] Charles Darwin, The Origins of the Species, 6th ed. (1872; repr. London: Collier Macmillan, 1962), p.93.  Cited Hunter, p.56.

[xxvii] Ibid.

[xxviii] Ernst Mayr, Toward a New Philosophy of Biology (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, Belknap Press, 1988), p. 208.  Cited in Hunter, p.53.

[xxix] Ernst Haeckel, Natürliche schöpfungsgeschichte Berlin 1876.  Translation revised by E. Ray Lankester under the title The History of Creation 2 Vols. (New York: D. Appleton, 1876). Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.190.

[xxx] Brian Mason, “Organic matter from space,” Scientific American 208, March 1963, p.45.  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.183.

[xxxi] Alvan Ellegard, Darwin and the General Reader (Stockholm: Göteberg Press, 1958), p.88.  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.183.

[xxxii] Taylor, In the minds of Men, p.183.

[xxxiii] Ibid.

[xxxiv] Further details may be found in Brian Mason’s book Meteorites, (New York: John Wiley, 1962), p.95.  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.183.

[xxxv] J.H. Lawless et al., “Organic matter in meterorites, Scientific American 226, June 1972, p.38.  Cited in Taylor, In the Minds of Men, “ p.184.

[xxxvi] Taylor, In the Minds of men, pp.191 and 192.

[xxxvii] Davies, p.14.

[xxxviii] Tim M. Berra, Evolution and the Myth of Creationism (Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1990), p.22.

[xxxix] Hunter, p.21.

[xl] William R. Fix, The Bone Peddlers (New York: Macmillan, 1984), p.285.  Cited in Hanegraaf, p.94.

[xli] Stephen Jay Gould, Ontogeny and Phylogeny (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Bellknap Press, 1977), n. 430.  Cited in Hanegraaf, p.94.

[xlii] Ian T. Taylor, In the Minds of Men, 3d ed. (Toronto: TFE Publishing, 1991), p.274.  Cited in Hanegraaf, p.94.

[xliii] Ibid., p.276.  Taylor writes: “{Haeckel] had added 3-5 mm to the head of Biscoff’s dog embryo, taken 2 mm off the head of Ecker’s human embryo, reduced the size of the eye 5 mm, and doubled the length of the posterior.”  Cited in Hanegraaf, p.95.

[xliv] Walt Brown, In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood, 6th ed. (Phoenix: Center for Scientific Creation, 1995), p.45.  Cited in Hanegraaf, p.95.

[xlv] Henry M. Morris, Scientific Creationism, public school edition (San Diego: C.L.P. Publishers, 1981), p.77.  Cited Hanegraaf, p.95.

[xlvi] Ibid., pp.75 to 78.

[xlvii] Carl Sagan, The Dragons of Eden (New York: Random House, 1977), pp.57 and 58.  Cited in Hanegraaf, pp.95 and 96.

[xlviii] Ibid., p.197.  Hanegraaf, p.96.

[xlix] Ibid.

[l] Hanegraaf, pp.pp.96 and 97.

[li] Ritter, Robert John, “Biology”, Nelson Canada, Scarborough, 1993, p100-101

[lii] Hunter, p.25.

[liii] Futuyma, Science on Trial, 46, 48, 62, 199Cited in Hunter, p.49.

[liv] Hunter, p.22.

[lv] Ibid., p.32.

[lvi] S.R. Scadding, “Do Vestigal Organs Provide Evidence for Evolution?” Evolutionary Theory 5, 1981, pp.173-176.  Cited in Hunter, p.32.

[lvii] Hunter, p.33.

[lviii] Stephen Jay Gould, “The Panda’s Thumb,” pp.20 and 21.  Cited in Hunter, p.48.

[lix] Stebbins, p.66.

[lx] Ibid., p.79.

[lxi] Taylor, In the Minds of men, p.161.

[lxii] Ibid.

[lxiii] Ibid., p.163.

[lxiv] Ibid., p.164.

[lxv] Ibid., p.166.

[lxvi] Ibid., p.175.

[lxvii] Quoted in Michael J. Behe, Darwin’s Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution (New York; Free Press, 1996), pp.225 and 226. Cited in Hunter, p.47.

[lxviii] Mark Ridley, Evolution (Boston: Blackwell Scientific, 1993), p.49.  Cited in Hunter, p.44.

[lxix] Tim M. Berra, Evolution and the Myth of Creationism (Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1990), p.19.  Cited in Hunter, pp.44 and 45.

[lxx] Hunter, pp.44 and 45.

[lxxi] Florence Raulin-Cerceau et al., “From Panspermia to Bioastronomy: The Evolution of the Hypothesis of Universal Life,” Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere 28, 1998, pp.597-612.  Cited in Hunter, p.37.

[lxxii] See, for example, Jacques Ninio, Molecular Approaches to Evolution (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1983), pp.79-81.  Cited in Hunter, p37.

[lxxiii] See for example, Leslie E. Orgel, “The Origin of Life – How Long Did It Take?” Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere 28, 1998, pp.91-96; Mitchell K. Hobish, “Studies on Order in Prebiological Systems at the Laboratory of Chemical Evolution,” Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere 28, 1998, p.124.  Cited in Hunter, p37.

[lxxiv] Hunter, p.38.

[lxxv] Stebbins, pp.17 and 18.

[lxxvi] Ibid., p.22.

[lxxvii] Ibid.

[lxxviii] Ibid.

[lxxix] Ibid., p.27.

[lxxx] Taylor, In the Minds of men, p.167.

[lxxxi] Charles Darwin, Origin of the Species, p.85.  Cited in Taylor, In the Mind’s of Men, p.167.

[lxxxii] Francis Darwin, ed., Charles Darwin life and letters 3 Vols, (London: John Murray, 1887), p296.  Cited in Taylor, in the Minds of Men, p.167.

[lxxxiii] Taylor, In the Minds of Men, p.167.

[lxxxiv] ibid.

[lxxxv] Ibid.

[lxxxvi] Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker, pp77 and 78.

[lxxxvii] Ibid., pp.78 and 79.

[lxxxviii] Ibid., p.81.

[lxxxix] Richard B. Goldschmidt, The Material Basis of Evolution (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1940), p.395.  As quoted in Gish, Evolution, 344 and found in Hanegraaff, p.41.

[xc] Stephen Jay Gould, Natural History Vol. 86, no. 6, 1977, p.22.  As quoted in Gish, p.341.  Cited in Hanegraaff, p.43.

[xci] Gould, Natural History, Vol. 86, no. 5, 1977, p.13.  As quoted in Gish, p.346.  Cited in Hanegraaff, p.44.

[xcii] “The Genome Doctor,” Christianity Today, October 1, 2001, Vol. 45, No. 12, p.42.