Sunday, 30 January 2011
Image courtesy of José-Manuel Benito Álvarez, Wikipedia.
First there was a story that lacked evidence. Then there were attempts to fit the evidence into a predetermined framework. The result is not very convincing since Darwinian evolution does not have a mechanism that would lift an ape-like creature to walk on two feet and make him into a man capable of using language fluently.
What do fossils disclose about human evolution? Not very much. Although there is no scarcity of fossils there are very few assumed remains of our supposed forefathers.
In his book Icons of Evolution (2000), Jonathan Wells, who has a PhD in molecular and cell biology, criticised the assumed evidence for evolution. He pointed out that it was very flimsy and misleading.
On a fresh video he says that nothing much has changed in ten years. Darwinian evolution does not work:
Natural selection and mutations do not increase an organism’s genetic information. In other words, animals cannot evolve from simpler forms into more sophisticated ones.
Many exoplanets are hot Jupiters. Image courtesy of NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle.
For a long time many astronomers have assumed that the universe is teeming with Earth-like planets that must harbour life.
Not all experts share this view, however. Recently, Howard Smith, a senior astrophysicist at Harvard University, said that we might be alone in the cosmos. Although 500 exoplanets have already been discovered, none of them resemble Earth. Smith suggests that Earth is unique.
Exoplanets differ from Earth in many ways. Most are hot super-earths that orbit very close to their star.
Dr. Smith says that many astronomers were thrilled by the discovery of the planet HD10180 as they assumed that it was very much like the Earth. But the more they examined it, the more obvious it became that there are enormous differences. HD10180 orbits its sun at a distance of under two million kilometres and is scorching hot (like many other exoplanets).
No wonder Dr. Smith is sceptical of finding life in outer space.
The Bible does not say anything about extraterrestrial life. In contrast, those who believe in Darwinian evolution assume that the universe is teeming with life.
Blake, Heidi. 2011. Alien life deemed impossible by analysis of 500 planets. The Telegraph (23 January).
Saturday, 29 January 2011
Wernher von Braun (1912 –1977), the father of the US Apollo space programme, believed that God created the entire universe. Image courtesy of NASA.
In December 1968 Apollo 8 astronauts Frank Borman, Jim Lovell and William Anders orbited the moon. They read the first ten verses of Genesis as a Christmas greeting to the inhabitants of ”the good earth”:
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.
And God said, Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.”
Dr. Wernher von Braun (1912 –1977), the father of the Apollo programme, was also a Bible-believing Christian. Since his time, however, NASA has sunk into a moral quagmire. Now, NASA employees cannot even suggest that at least some aspects of nature appear to be designed – if they want to keep their jobs.
Since 1997 David Coppedge has worked as an information technology specialist and system administrator in the Cassini Program at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He was demoted when a colleague complained that he had loaned two pro-ID DVD documentaries to his co-workers.
This week NASA announced that Mr. Coppedge would loose his job because they have to downsize the staff at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
NASA’s excuse is a lame one. Mr. Coppedge is one of the senior computer experts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Usually, it is the junior members who have to go first and not the most competent ones.
It seems that for some NASA bosses intelligent design is like a red rag to a not-too-friendly bull.
Background on David Coppedge and the lawsuit against NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
This ship made headlines in May 2010. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.
In May 2010 Israeli commandoes intercepted a Turkish convoy bound for Gaza. The ”peace activists” on board the Mavi Marmara attacked the soldiers with metal tubes and other weapons.
Ten of the soldiers were wounded in the clash. The Israelis had to resort to firearms to calm the all-but-peaceful activists, nine of whom died and several were wounded.
For the most part, the popular media promptly condemned the Israeli raid.
Israel set up a commission to investigate the matter. In addition to Israeli experts, it also included two well-known international observers. Lord David Trimble was awarded the 1998 Nobel peace prize for his efforts to bring an end to the fighting in Northern Ireland. Ken Watkin, a retired Canadian brigadier-general, investigated the Rwanda genocide.
The inquiry concluded that international law gave Israel the right to intercept a convoy that was a potential security risk.
Reporting on the decision, BBC for instance did not even mention the names of the international observers.
Israel inquiry finds Gaza aid flotilla raid 'was legal' BBC News. 23 January 2011.
Flotilla Report: BBC Plumbs the Depths. Honest Reporting. 24 January 2011.
Sunday, 23 January 2011
New Caledonian crow (Corvus moneduloides). Image courtesy of John Gerrard Keulemans, Wikipedia.
Crows are surprisingly clever. In spite of their relatively small brains, they are more innovative in their use of tools than the great apes. This is a dilemma for Darwinians since according to the evolution-based story, as our closest living relatives chimpanzees should be cleverer than birds.
Recently, a team at the University of Oxford observed New Caledonian crows (Corvus moneduloides) living in aviaries. The researchers gave the crows different kinds of objects. Seeing a potentially dangerous object, the birds would first touch it with a tool (a stick) until they would use their beak.
Research has shown that crows will use one tool to access another one that will enable them to use a third tool.
Crows are innovative tool users in other ways, also:
Physorg.com. 18 January 2011.
The Haitian earthquake in January 2010 was more deadly than any other in several decades. Image courtesy of Joshua Lee Kelsey, US Navy, via Wikipedia.
When an earthquake hits a very corrupt country, it kills more people than if it occurs in a less corrupt country. This is the take-away message of a fresh study that looked into the causes of earthquake deaths.
Professor Nicholas Ambraseys at the Imperial College in London and professor Roger Bilham at the University of Colorado at Boulder examined data collected by Transparency International, a Berlin-based organisation that monitors corruption and the abuse of power globally.
Ambraseys and Bilham noticed that during the past three decades 83 per cent of all deaths occurred in the most corrupt countries.
For instance, whereas the 2010 quake in Haiti took the lives of approximately 250,000 people (the estimate varies greatly, depending on the source), no one died in a comparable 7.0 magnitude earthquake in New Zealand.
According to ScienceDaily, many deaths are caused by “corrupt building practices … which can include the use of substandard materials, poor assembly methods, the inappropriate placement of buildings and non-adherence to building codes.”
The result should not be a surprise for Christians who believe in the Bible. After all, the apostle Paul said that the wages of sin is death.
Extent of Corruption in Countries Around the World Tied to Earthquake Fatalities. ScienceDaily 16 January 2011.
Friday, 21 January 2011
In 1959, when evolutionists celebrated the 100th anniversary of The Origin of Species, Sir Julian Huxley proclaimed that creationism was practically dead.
Sir Julian Huxley (1887-1975) was the grandson of Thomas Henry Huxley, who was known as Darwin’s bulldog.
Two years after Huxley’s prediction, doctors John Whitcomb and Henry Morris published their book The Genesis Flood that showed that the Flood of Noah’s day was not a myth but a real historical event.
Dr. Whitcomb was a theologian and Dr. Morris an expert in hydraulics. Whitcomb knew what the Bible said about the Flood and Morris understood what a lot of water could do.
Over 200, 000 copies of the book have been sold. It marked a real renaissance in biblical creationism.
Tuesday, 18 January 2011
Ottavio Leoni: Galileo Galilei. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.
NASA aims to send a piece of Galileo Galilei’s bone into space.
When a Polish cardinal suggests that the Catholic Church should set aside a tiny bottle of John Paul II’s blood as a relic, the popular media sees a potential scoop. Benedict XVI, the current pope, will soon declare his predecessor blessed.
However, the popular media has largely failed to report on another kind of relic. Recently, the journal Nature published an editorial on NASA’s aim to send a piece of Galileo Galilei’s bone into orbit round Jupiter. The Juno probe, scheduled to be launched in August, will orbit the giant gas planet 32 times (if all goes well) taking with it a piece of a bone of the scientist who discovered four of its moons.
The Roman Catholic Church does not seem to have a monopoly on relics, as anyone who has seen the tomb of Lenin would remember.
Galileo’s bone piece differs from all others in that we cannot actually see it.
Galileo’s send off. Nature 468 (7320): 6.
Paavin verinäyte puolalaiskirkon aarteeksi. Aamulehti 18 January 2011, A10.
Sunday, 16 January 2011
The Kepler space telescope, launched in March 2007, recently discovered a hot super earth. Image courtesy of NASA.
NASA’s Kepler space telescope has discovered a new super earth some 560 light years from our solar system. Approximately 40 per cent larger than Earth, the planet orbits its sun at a distance of 2.5 million kilometres. Its surface temperature is expected to be 1800 °C.
Surprisingly many exoplanets seem to be very different from Earth. Often, a hot super earth orbits its sun so close that at least the kind of life we are familiar with is not possible.
The search for life in outer space stems from faith in the power of natural evolutionary processes. An evolutionist will believe that life can originate spontaneously by purely natural means almost everywhere, including on exoplanets.
A century ago, the journal Nature even speculated on the advanced civilization of Martians.
The more exoplanets are discovered, the more obvious it becomes that Earth is a very special planet, created for life.
Mann, Adam. 2011. Space scope finds scorched super-Earth. Nature news (10 January).
Saturday, 15 January 2011
Gao Zhisheng. Image courtesy of Voice of America.
Chinese police beat and mistreated human rights activist Gao Zhisheng for 48 hours without a break. Gao, a Christian lawyer, has had to suffer terribly for his courageous stand against human rights abuses in China. For several years the police have taken him from one prison to another. At times, his wife and children have not even known whether he was alive.
Unfortunately, many western leaders have been reluctant to take up the issue with Chinese leaders for fear of losing a lucrative market for their goods.
You can read more about human rights infringements in China on the China Aid webpages.
Hutzler, Charles. 2011. AP Exclusive: Missing Chinese lawyer told of abuse. The Washington Post. (10 January)
Friday, 14 January 2011
God promised Noah that a global flood would never again destroy all life on earth. Image courtesy of Jerry Magnum Porsbjer, Wikipedia.
The flooding that has continued for weeks in Australia reminds us that unlike Adam and Eve, we no longer live in a perfect world but a world corrupted by sin. However, in spite of tragedies and destruction it is not at all like Noah’s Flood.
Genesis describes a covenant God made with Noah after the Flood:
”I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you and with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you—every living creature on earth. I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth” (Genesis 9:9-11, NIV).
The rainbow tells us that the Flood of Noah’s day could not have been a global deluge. It also assures us that a destructive global flood will never again destroy all life.
Thursday, 13 January 2011
The gap between Thiomargarita namibiensis, the largest known bacterium, and a multicellular organism is enormous. Image courtesy of NASA.
According to Darwinian evolution, all living beings stem from the same unicellular ancestor. Although the unicellular organisms known to science are biochemically complex, they have not turned into multicellular animals.
Recently, an article in the journal Nature admitted that this kind of stasis causes problems for evolutionists. Darwinian evolution should be about change but not all species change. What on earth prevented one-celled prokaryotes from developing into multicellular eukaryotes?
”Bacteria made a start up virtually every avenue of eukaryotic complexity, but then stopped short. Why?” Nature asks and tries to answer the question. However, there is no sufficient naturalistic answer to the dilemma.
Thiomargarita namibiensis, the world’s largest unicellular organism, is so big that one can see it with the naked eye. Regardless of its size the gap between this bacterium found in Namibia and a multicellular organism is enormous and cannot be bridged.
Even the assumed millions of years have failed to make bacteria more complex.
According to a more logical explanation, multicellular organisms do not evolve from unicellular ones but unicellular organisms have been programmed to remain unicellular. If the unicellular organism does not have all the necessary genetic information at the beginning, no mechanism known to science is able to add it.
Mutations do not take away the enormous dilemma facing Darwinian evolution, since they do not increase genetic information.
The Darwinian reconstruction of the past does not solve the problem. The best solution would be to discard evolution but for many Darwinists it might be a too emotional step to take.
Lane, Nick and William Martin. 2010. The energetics of genome complexity. Nature 467 (7318): 929-935.
Wednesday, 12 January 2011
Jesus promised that His followers would be persecuted. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.
Christianity is the most persecuted religion in the world. Of all the people who are persecuted for their religious beliefs, 75 per cent are followers of Jesus. Christians are not only discriminated against in communist or Islamic countries but they are also being marginalized in Europe.
In December, the Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians in Europe published a 40-page report that indicated that Christians are being increasingly discriminated against in Europe. Many EU countries favour the rights of Muslims, homosexuals and freethinkers and marginalize Christian values.
The report mentions dozens of disturbing examples, including the following ones:
· In May 2010 police arrested Scottish street preacher Dale McAlpine after he said that homosexuality was a sin.
· In July 2010 the Spanish government fined a Christian television network 100,000 euros for running a series of advertisements in favour of traditional family values and opposing the homosexual lifestyle.
· In October 2010 the British Humanist Association (BHA) attempted to shut down a zoo that presents Noah’s Flood as a historical event and is critical of Darwinian evolution.
· In December 2009 homosexual students disrupted a lecture Edith Düsing, a Protestant philosopher, was holding at Cologne University. Professor Düsing has conducted research indicating that homosexuality can be healed.
· In October 2007 a Catholic airport worker in Manchester, England, was suspended for displaying an image of Jesus on a staff room wall after a Muslim colleague complained.
· In February 2010 twelve crosses were removed from the walls of a public hospital in Bad Soden, Germany, and thrown into trash bags.
Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians in Europe
Sunday, 9 January 2011
All land animals outside Noah’s ark met their death in a year-long global catastrophe.
Researchers have found a huge fossil graveyard in south west China. According to LiveScience, it is “a giant cache of nearly 20,000 fossil reptiles, shellfish and a host of other prehistoric creatures”.
A research team led by Shixue Hu reported on the finds online in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
The researchers assume that the mass grave holds the remains of animals that met their death in the mass extinction event at the end of the Permian Period some 250 million years ago. The event is assumed to be “the most devastating mass extinction on Earth.”
Genesis also describes a huge mass extinction event that put an end to all land-based life outside Noah’s ark. Some 4500 years ago all land animals outside the ark met their death in a year-long global catastrophe.
The Flood left massive fossil graveyards all over the world. (You can read more here and here.)
Choi, Charles Q. 2010. Cache in Chinese Mountain Reveals 20,000 Prehistoric Fossils. LiveScience (21 December).
Saturday, 8 January 2011
Pope Benedict XVI. Image courtesy of Fabio Pozzebom, Agência Brasil, via Wikipedia.
When the Pope says that the universe is not the result of random processes, his statement makes headlines all over the world.
As reported by Reuters, Pope Benedict XVI said in his Epiphany sermon on Thursday:
“God's mind was behind complex scientific theories such as the Big Bang, and Christians should reject the idea that the universe came into being by accident. The universe is not the result of chance, as some would want to make us believe."
While many Christians might equate the big bang with the initial creation event mentioned in Genesis, the Bible’s account differs considerably from the secular view of how the universe came into being. The most conspicuous differences are the time scale and the order of events. Exodus 20:11 states:
“For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them.”
In the space of six days God created everything there is. God is a God of miracles. In the New Testament He instantaneously turned water into wine and created new cells for Lazarus in no time at all.
In other words, God did not need 13.7 billion years to create the cosmos. The belief in millions of years of earth history would mean that death was not the result of Adam’s sin. In effect it would elevate fallible man’s opinion over that what God says in the Bible.
Pullella, Philip. 2011. God was behind Big Bang, universe no accident: Pope Yahoo! NEWS (6 January).
Sunday, 2 January 2011
In recent years the media have reported on an assumed flood of ”biblical proportions” on Mars although there is no evidence of liquid water on the red planet.
Recently, the media used the same expression to describe flooding in north east Australia. It is the worst watery disaster there in 90 years. The floods are probably caused by the La Niña phenomenon that has brought warmth and humidity to the Australian coast.
Heavy rains and the flooding of Fitzroy River and other rivers have driven many people from their homes. However, at the moment only one person has been reported dead. Nonetheless, Queensland State Treasurer Andrew Fraser said the flooding was a "disaster of biblical proportions".
The flooding might be a big catastrophe for Queensland, but compared to the flood of Noah’s day, it is a minor deluge. The year-long global flood destroyed all land-based life and radically changed Earth’s topography.
Kauranen, Anne. 2011. tulvavedet pysyvät korkealla yli viikon: Australia: ”Raamatullisten mittasuhteiden” tulvat ovat pahimmat 90 vuoteen. Aamulehti 2 January A14.
Munoz, Daniel. 2011. Record floods swamp Australia's northeast. Yahoo News. 2 January.