Is Darwinian Evolution Dead?

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Many claim that science proves evolution is a fact. However, discoveries such as the complex structures within living cells have proven quite the opposite!


Discoveries in the field of microbiology have changed the game

Our culture is saturated with the claim of Darwinian evolution: that natural selection acting on mutations that arise due to blind, unguided chance is responsible for life on our planet—no God necessary. However, when we drill down into the smallest unit of life—the cell—we do not see a world that anything related to “blind chance” could have produced! We see, instead, a complex and remarkable world of molecular machinery that points to a Grand Designer.

Is Darwinian evolution the established fact you have been told it is? Or is there reason to doubt Darwin’s theory? Many discoveries made over the last half-century call into question whether life as we know it could possibly be the result of random chance. One scientist with a PhD in molecular and cellular biology certainly doubts that possibility.

In an interview with Lee Strobel, Dr. Jonathan Wells said, “The evidence for Darwinism is not only grossly inadequate, it’s systematically distorted. I’m convinced that sometime in the not-too-distant future—I don’t know, maybe twenty or thirty years from now—people will look back in amazement and say, ‘How could anyone have believed this?’ Darwinism is merely materialistic philosophy masquerading as science, and people are recognizing it for what it is” (The Case for a Creator, Strobel, p. 79).

There is a constant smear campaign against Wells, as there is against any scientist who would dare call into question the god of Darwinian evolution, but facts are facts and any truly objective mind that seriously looks into the evidence must conclude that Darwinism is not the open-and-closed case diehard evolutionists would like you to believe. And if empirical evidence is not on Darwin’s side, this has serious implications for the question of how we got here, and whether there is a purpose for our existence.

As Michael Denton rightly wrote,

The idea [of evolution] has come to touch every aspect of modern thought; and no other theory in recent times has done more to mould the way we view ourselves and our relationship to the world around us.… The triumph of evolution meant the end of the traditional belief in the world as a purposeful created order—the so-called teleological outlook which had been predominant in the western world for two millennia.… Any suggestion that there might be something seriously wrong with the Darwinian view of nature is bound to excite public attention, for if biologists cannot substantiate the fundamental claims of Darwinism, upon which rests so much of the fabric of twentieth-century thought, then clearly the intellectual and philosophical implications are immense” (Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, pp. 15–16).

In the January-February 2017 issue of Tomorrow’s World I asked, “Did dinosaurs kill God?” Of course, the question is preposterous, but it highlighted an important point. Many people believe that the fossil record—evidence of the world of dinosaurs—supports Darwinian evolution, when the exact opposite is true. According to Denton, once again:

The overall picture of life on Earth today is so discontinuous, the gaps between the different types so obvious, that, as Steven Stanley reminds us in his recent book Macroevolution, if our knowledge of biology was restricted to those species presently existing on Earth, “we might wonder whether the doctrine of evolution would qualify as anything more than an outrageous hypothesis.” Without intermediates or transitional forms to bridge the enormous gaps which separate existing species and groups of organisms, the concept of evolution could never be taken seriously as a scientific hypothesis (Denton, pp. 157–158).

However, the lack of intermediates, or to put it another way, the lack of missing links, which would have to number in multiple millions for evolution to be true, is only one of many problems with this theory.

You Are Not Alone!

Evolutionists do not like the term blind chance, and would prefer to present their case as unguided natural forces working to bring about all life forms that we see today. However, if blind chance is rejected, why Richard Dawkins’ book title: The Blind Watchmaker? Evolution by its very definition has no intelligent oversight. It works, supposedly, by means of environmental factors acting on chance mutations, which are generally considered to have come about at random. It is therefore blind chance, no matter how someone wishes to spin it!

But irresistible facts are turning the science world upside down, and many former evolutionists and atheists are losing their confidence in “blind chance.” Investigative journalist Lee Strobel is one of the more famous among Darwin skeptics. His story is like many others. He once firmly believed in evolution, and as with most—but certainly not all—true believers, was an atheist. He admits he looked down upon poor religious souls who were so ignorant that they rejected what he thought science had proved long ago, but after thoroughly researching the subject, he wrote his findings in The Case for a Creator.

In this book, he describes how 100 scientists from a variety of highly specialized scientific disciplines, with PhD’s from well-known and prestigious universities, reacted to a seven-part PBS series that asserted that “‘all known scientific evidence supports evolution’ as does ‘virtually every reputable scientist in the world’” (Strobel, p. 36).

In response, this collection of 100 credentialed scientists posted a two-page advertisement in a national magazine, declaring: “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life.… Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged” (Strobel, p 36).

Strobel then goes on to explain that these skeptics of Darwin were “respected world-class scientists like Nobel nominee Henry F. Schaefer, the third most-cited chemist in the world; James Tour of Rice University’s Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology; and Fred Figworth, professor of cellular and molecular physiology at Yale Graduate School” (Strobel, p. 36). Also among them were, “The director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry and scientists at the Plasma Physics Lab at Princeton, the National Museum of Natural History at the Smithsonian Institute, the Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Lawrence Livermore Laboratories” (Strobel, pp. 35–36).

This is not the picture presented in typical high school and university biology courses, and certainly not by the media, but the next time that some know-it-all posts a putdown on the Internet, ridiculing anyone who is a Darwin skeptic, take heart. Men and women who know far more than these keyboard warriors do have serious doubts. Many former atheists and evolutionists have come to reject Darwinism—some openly, while others fear reprisal and stay “in the closet.”

Among the scientific discoveries causing so many to reject Darwinian reasoning, those in the field of microbiology have been powerfully convicting. Scientists today are able to peer into microscopic cells and see in far greater detail than scientists of past generations. Michael Denton lays it on the line: “Although the tiniest bacterial cells are incredibly small… each is in effect a veritable micro-miniaturized factory containing thousands of exquisitely designed pieces of intricate molecular machinery. . . far more complicated than any machine built by man and absolutely without parallel in the non-living world” (Denton, p. 250). This is no exaggeration!

Denton further states, “The complexity of the simplest known type of cell is so great that it is impossible to accept that such an object could have been thrown together suddenly by some kind of freakish, vastly improbable, event. Such an occurrence would be indistinguishable from a miracle” (Denton, p. 264).

One truly has to wonder how any educated person can maintain belief in Darwinism when confronted with the staggering complexity of life and the insurmountable challenge of explaining how life arose from non-living material.

Which Came First?

You have no doubt heard the question, “Which came first? The chicken or the egg?” This is no trivial question when it comes to the origin of life. Here is why.

Most biology students are familiar with the Miller-Urey experiment. Stanley Miller and Harold C. Urey speculated that the earth’s early atmosphere might have been composed of hydrogen, ammonia and methane. By a carefully crafted experiment in which they sent electrical charges through a mixture of these chemicals, they were able to produce a few amino acids. This 1953 experiment was hailed as proof of evolution. But was it?

As with so many hopeful headlines, this hoped-for demonstration came up short, and reputable scientists recognize that there are huge problems with the experiment. The highly controlled conditions under which the research was conducted were unlike anything that scientists now believe constituted a primitive earth atmosphere. It is also important to note that an amino acid is not life. All living creatures use only left-handed amino acids, unlike the mixture the experiment produced. And most importantly, scientists cannot demonstrate or explain how a single protein is formed by chance, or by any process other than that which we currently see operating in living organisms. The odds against a protein forming by chance are so staggering that many scientists have given up on it and are looking for an alternative explanation. So far, they have no credible alternative to speak of.

The problem of protein formation is brought out in Bill Bryson’s A Short History of Nearly Everything. “No one really knows, but there may be as many as a million [different] types of protein in the human body, and each one is a little miracle,” Bryson writes. “By all the laws of probability proteins shouldn’t exist” (Bryson, p. 288).

Consider carefully. Bryson, a believer in evolution, refers to each of the million or so different kinds of proteins that make us living organisms as “little miracles.” Why?

Proteins are made from long strings of amino acids that are connected in a manner that allows them to be folded into precise three-dimensional shapes. Unless amino acids are connected in a proper order, they cannot be folded into the shapes necessary to combine with other proteins to construct the machines and structures within cells. The assembling of these amino acides in an exact sequence is a necessary—but not sufficient—requirement to build a protein.

The amino acids that are used to build proteins are often compared to the letters in our alphabet, which are used to build words and sentences—but instead of 26 letters, as in the English language, there are only 20 amino acids that are used in the genetic code of life. Think of the relationship between amino acids and proteins this way: This magazine contains hundreds of sentences, each one totally unique—different from all others. These sentences are made up of letters that form words, which are in turn placed in an order that makes sense. Now consider throwing tens of thousands of letters into a box and pulling them out one at a time and placing them in the sequence in which they are drawn. How long would you have to do this to come up with a perfectly constructed sentence, even a short one of about 75 letters? The same problem applies to proteins. What exactly are the odds of a single protein coming together by chance?

Bill Bryson asks and answers the question by discussing collagen—an extremely common protein in the bodies of mammals, including human beings.

As Bryson highlights, “to make collagen, you need to arrange 1,055 amino acids in precisely the right sequence. But—and here’s an obvious but crucial point—you don’t make it. It makes itself, spontaneously, without direction, and this is where the unlikelihoods come in. The chances of a 1,055-sequence molecule like collagen spontaneously self-assembling are, frankly, nil. It just isn’t going to happen” (Bryson, p. 288).

If it “just isn’t going to happen,” then maybe we could get along without collagen. We cannot, but let us imagine for a moment we can. After all, there may be as many as a million different kinds of proteins that contribute to what we are, and maybe we could do without one or two.

Without getting into the weeds and losing everyone, Bryson calculates the odds of a more modest 200-amino-acid-protein self-assembling as one in… what? One in 1,000? One in 10,000?

No, the number we’re looking for is a one followed by 260 zeros! That number, Bryson helpfully explains, is “a larger number than all the atoms in the universe.” As he says, “Each one is a little miracle.”

So, who believes in faith and miracles, now?

This is why many scientists are giving up on chance. So far, no one has come up with a convincing explanation as to how even one protein came into existence without an intelligent designer and apart from the way they are formed today.

And just how are proteins formed today? They are constructed according to directions supplied by the DNA within our cells. DNA is nothing less than code—or to put it another way, instructions—on how to build proteins. DNA is powerful! You can read about this amazing molecule in our May-June 2013 article, “The Miracle of DNA,” available on our website at TomorrowsWorld.org. But for now, let us gain some perspective.

Most of us marvel at how much information is contained in a single computer chip or hard drive. But man’s genius is no match for DNA. “The information necessary to specify the design of all the species of organisms which have ever existed on the planet, a number according to G.G. Simpson of approximately one thousand million, could be held in a teaspoon [of DNA] and there would still be room left for all the information in every book ever written” (Denton, p. 334)!

So how did DNA evolve? This is a question that evolutionists cannot answer. Can anyone give us an example of code (or shall we call it “building instructions”) that ever came into being apart from intelligence? If Bill Gates must hire highly intelligent programmers to write code for Microsoft products, why would anyone think that the most powerful code known to man would come into existence by chance? This is a serious question that demands an answer!

But DNA is only the beginning. Making a protein is complicated and requires the use of molecular machines made from already existing proteins! You need proteins to make proteins! DNA can do nothing without machines made of proteins!

Without ever explaining how DNA came into existence, Bill Bryson explains the paradox: “Proteins can’t exist without DNA, and DNA has no purpose without proteins. Are we to assume then that they arose simultaneously with the purpose of supporting each other? If so: wow” (Bryson, p. 289).

One must seriously ask again, “Just who is relying on faith and miracles, now?”

When confronted with the staggering gap between a few amino acids—such as those that were formed in the Miller/Urey laboratory—and the complexity of the simplest cell, evolutionists have a standard answer. Instead of explaining how such a gap is bridged, which they cannot, many prefer to skip over it and reply, “We are here, so it happened!”

Of course, no one disputes that we are here. What we dispute is how it happened, and there is a far better explanation: The code of DNA was designed by intelligence. The inner workings of the cell shout “Design!” Every bird, butterfly, fish and flower display the invisible attributes of a great, powerful and loving God!

The Apostle Paul declares that Darwin’s promoters of “creation without a Creator” have no excuse. “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:20). Israel’s king David marveled over the miracle of life, saying “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well” (Psalm 139:14). He further declared, “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 14:1).

The Other Side of the Elephant

To conclude this investigation of the current state of affairs, perhaps the final word could be given to biochemist and former evolutionist Michael Behe. In his bestselling exposé, Darwin’s Black Box, Behe explains how scientific research over the last several decades has exposed biologists to the incredibly complex inter-workings of cells that make up every living organism—facts that represent an “elephant in the room” that few want to discuss. His conclusion?

The result of these cumulative efforts to investigate the cell—to investigate life at the molecular level—is a loud, clear, piercing cry of “design!” The result is so unambiguous and so significant that it must be ranked as one of the greatest achievements in the history of science. This triumph of science should evoke cries of “Eureka!” from ten thousand throats, should occasion much hand-slapping and high-fiving, and perhaps even be an excuse to take a day off.

But no bottles have been uncorked, no hands slapped. Instead, a curious, embarrassed silence surrounds the stark complexity of the cell. When the subject comes up in public, feet start to shuffle, and breathing gets a bit labored. In private people are a bit more relaxed; many explicitly admit the obvious but then stare at the ground, shake their heads, and let it go at that.

 

Why does the scientific community not greedily embrace its startling discovery? Why is the observation of design handled with intellectual gloves?

 

The dilemma is that while one side of the elephant is labeled intelligent design, the other side might be labeled God (pp. 232–233).

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