Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Expert Testimony: the Demise of Evolution, Complexity in DNA, & the Resurrection of Christ

“If the Bible is not the Word of God and inspired, the whole of Christendom for 1800 years has been under an immense delusion; half the human race has been cheated and deceived, and churches are monuments of folly. If the Bible is the Word of God and inspired, all who refuse to believe it are in fearful danger; they are living on the brink of eternal misery. No man, in his sober senses, can fail to see that the whole subject demands most serious attention.”
J.C. Ryle (1816-1900)

Life, death, truth, falsehood, we face down the greatest questions of our time on this website.  And why not anyhow?  Dare we dismiss all inquiry, sacrificed at the altar of post-modernism?  Should we dismiss all comprehension of a creator to give ourselves an open season to depravity?  No, we shall not!  Truth is truth, and we must know it while the chance is available to us.

In the United States we love experts.  We look to the experts for everything from psychology to politics and of course to the sciences.  Expert testimony is vital in determining if indeed there is a God, or if there is not.  Unfortunately the playing field is not always even.  Or as Dr. Ravi Zacharias said, "Man's problem is not the absence of evidence but the suppression of it."

Since the famed scopes trial evolutionary biology has fought it's way from the outside, to the very center of the US educational system.  Darwinian evolution is powerful and entrenched.  Dissent is silenced, yet many brave men and women, scientists, have the courage to stand for the truth.  What can we learn from them?  Did we really rise from the muck?  Or does the emperor have no clothes?  

Next we look at complexity in DNA, observed by scientists as evidence for the existence of God.  Given such severe complexity, such incredible loads of information, what conclusions can we draw?

Finally, we look at the very center of the Christian faith: the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Before we dismiss the miraculous as impossible, perhaps we should recheck that underlying assumption.  Are miracles really absurd?  Is there solid evidence for the resurrection of Jesus Christ?  And is it really so ludicrous to think that the God who made the universe from nothing could bring back this man from the dead?  Consider these questions, and the assumptions underneath prior beliefs when examining these quotations from great thinkers across the ages.  Enjoy.

The Demise of Evolution

 “Scientists who utterly reject evolution may be one of our fastest-growing controversial minorities...Many of the scientists supporting this position hold impressive credentials in science.” –Larry Hatfield, “Educators Against Darwin,” Science Digest Special (Winter 1979), pp. 94-96.

“These are exciting times. When I finished the Epilogue to Darwin on Trial in 1993, I compared evolutionary naturalism to a great battleship afloat on the Ocean of Reality. The ship's sides are heavily armored with philosophical and legal barriers to criticism, and its decks are stacked with 16-inch rhetorical guns to intimidate would-be attackers. In appearance, it is as impregnable as the Soviet Union seemed a few years ago. But the ship has sprung a metaphysical leak, and that leak widens as more and more people understand it and draw attention to the conflict between empirical science and materialist philosophy. The more perceptive of the ship's officers know that the ship is doomed if the leak cannot be plugged. The struggle to save the ship will go on for a while, and meanwhile there will even be academic wine-and-cheese parties on the deck. In the end, the ship's great firepower and ponderous armor will only help drag it to the bottom. Reality will win.” –Phillip E. Johnson in an article, “How to Sink a Battleship: A call to separate materialist philosophy from empirical science.”

“According to Darwinists, there is such overwhelming evidence for their view that it should be considered a fact. Yet to the Darwinists' dismay, at least three-quarters of the American people - citizens of the most scientifically advanced country in history - reject it....The truth is Darwinism is not a scientific theory, but a materialistic creation myth masquerading as science. It is first and foremost a weapon against religion - especially traditional Christianity. Evidence is brought in afterwards, as window dressing. This is becoming increasingly obvious to the American people, who are not the ignorant backwoods religious dogmatists that Darwinists make them out to be. Darwinists insult the intelligence of American taxpayers and at the same time depend on them for support. This is an inherently unstable situation, and it cannot last. If I were a Darwinist, I would be afraid. Very afraid.” –Jonathan Wells, American molecular biologist

“A Chinese paleontologist lectures around the world saying that recent fossil finds in his country are inconsistent with the Darwinian theory of evolution. His reason: The major animal groups appear abruptly in the rocks over a relatively short time, rather than evolving gradually from a common ancestor as Darwin’s theory predicts. When this conclusion upsets American scientists, he wryly comments: "In China we can criticize Darwin but not the government. In America you can criticize the government but not Darwin.” –Phillip E. Johnson in an article, “The Church of Darwin.”

“Even if all the data points to an intelligent designer, such an hypothesis is excluded from science because it is not naturalistic.” –Dr. Scott Todd, Kansas State University

Complexity in DNA

“Just one living cell in the human body is, more complex than New York City.” –Linus Pauling, Nobel Prize winner

“There is enough information capacity in a single human cell to store the Encyclopedia Britannica, all 30 volumes of it, three or four times over.” –Richard Dawkins, prominent atheist ethologist & biologist

"Human DNA contains more organized information than the Encyclopedia Britannica. If the full text of the encyclopedia were to arrive in computer code from outer space, most people would regard this as proof of the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence. But when seen in nature, it is explained as the workings of random forces." –George Sim Johnson, quoted in Lee Strobel, The Case for a Creator, 219.

“DNA is like a computer program, but far, far more advanced that any software we've ever created.” –
Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft

“It now seems to me that the findings of more than fifty years of DNA research have provided materials for a new and enormously powerful argument to design.” –Antony Flew, English Philosopher & former atheist turned theist

The Resurrection of Jesus Christ

“I have been used for many years to study the histories of other times and to examine and weigh the evidence of those who have written about them, and I know of no one fact in the history of mankind which is proved by better and fuller evidence of every sort, to the understanding of a fair inquirer, than the great sign which God hath given us that Christ died and rose again from the dead.” –Thomas Arnold, historian and Oxford professor

“If all the evidence is weighed carefully and fairly, it is indeed justifiable, according to the canons of historical research, to conclude that the sepulcher of Joseph of Arimathea, in which Jesus was buried, was actually empty on the morning of the first Easter. And no shred of evidence has yet been discovered in literary sources, epigraphy, or archaeology that would disprove this statement.” –Paul Maier, Historian Emeritus, Western Michigan University

“They [the disciples] were testifying to the resurrection, a question of fact, not merely of faith. They were convinced of an event. And their willingness to die for attesting to that event is far more convincing that the willingness of others to die for a mere belief or because of loyalty to a religion or religious leader.” –Dave Hunt, Christian Apologist & Author

“Raking all the evidence together, it is not too much to say that there is no historic incident better or more variously supported than the resurrection of Christ. Nothing but the antecedent assumption that it must be false could have suggested the idea of deficiency in the proof of it.”
Brooke Foss Westcott, British Bishop, Biblical Scholar & Theologian

“If Jesus remained dead, how can you explain the reality of the Christian church and its phenomenal growth in the first three centuries of the Christian era? Christ's church covered the Western world by the fourth century. A religious movement built on a lie could not have accomplished that....All the power of Rome and of the religious establishment in Jerusalem was geared to stop the Christian faith. All they had to do was to dig up the grave and to present the corpse. They didn’t.” –Henry Schaefer III, computational & theoretical chemist, University of Georgia 

In other words, welcome to the family, should you decide that now is the moment to embrace what is seen to be true... ultimately the choice is yours.  The architect of the universe loves us enough to give us a choice, whether to embrace him, or ignore him.  Imagine that.    

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