Christian Apologetics Study

THE DEATH OF NEO-DARWINISM

Oct
18

Darwinism is the the evolutionary mechanism proposed by Charles Darwin as an explanation of organic transformation. This theory denotes Darwin’s specific view of how evolution works. Darwin developed the concept that evolution is brought about by the interplay of three principles: variation (present in all forms of life), heredity (the force that transmits similar organic form from one generation to another), and the struggle for existence (which determines the variations that will be advantageous in a given environment, thus altering the species through selective reproduction). Today neo-Darwinists employ the fact of microevolution to defend the myth of macroevolution. Creation science researchers and intelligent design theorists have discredited Darwinism by exposing the fundamental differences in micro and macro evolution, the genetic mutation problems, the information in Deoxyribonucleic Acid, and the lack of transitional forms.

MICRO-EVOLUTION VS MACRO-EVOLUTION

The weight of scientific evidence demonstrates that only microevolution (variations within a biological “kind” such as the varieties of dogs, cats, horses, cows, and other animals) is possible but not Macro-evolution (This is variations across biological “kinds” from simpler kinds of animals to more kinds of complex animals). The only evolution that occurs in nature is microevolution (AKA: horizontal evolution), but not macroevolution (vertical evolution). The genetic ability for microevolution exists in nature, but not the genetic ability for macroevolution.

While the genes (chemical and genetic instructions or biochemical programs) for microevolution exist in every species, we find no genes for macroevolution. Because the laws of nature cannot perform genetic engineering (to construct entirely new genes and not just to produce variations and new combinations of already existing genes), macroevolution is simply impossible under purely natural conditions. We have varieties of dogs today that we did not have a thousand years ago.  Their existence is just another example of microevolution (horizontal evolution) in nature.

No matter how many varieties of dogs come into being these animals will always remain dogs and not change or evolve into some other kind of animal. Even the formation of an entirely new species of plant or animal from hybridization will not support Darwinian macroevolution because such hybridization does not involve any production of new genetic information, but merely the recombination of already existing genes. Modifications and new combinations of already existing genes for already existing biological features have been shown to occur in nature but never the production of completely new genes or new biological features. This is true even with genetic mutations. For example, mutations in the genes for human hair may change the genes and thus causing another type of human hair to develop, but these mutations will not change the genes for human hair where feathers, wings, or entirely new biological features will develop. Mutations sometimes cause the duplication of already existing biological features (an extra finger, toe, and even in other parts of the body), but none of these things qualify as new biological features. 

DARWISM AND MUTATIONS

Darwinists believe that, if given enough time, random or chance mutations in the genetic code caused by random environmental forces such as radiation will produce entirely new genetic information for entirely new biological features, which natural selection can act upon or preserve. However, there is no scientific evidence whatsoever where random mutations have the capability to generate entirely new genes, which would program for the development of completely new biological features in species. It would require genetic engineering to accomplish such a feat. Random genetic mutations caused by the environment will never qualify as genetic engineering. Mutations are accidents in the sequential molecular structure of the genetic code and they are almost always harmful, as would be expected from accidents.  Even if a good mutation does occur for every good mutation there will be hundreds of harmful ones with the net result over time being disastrous for the species.

Furthermore, only those mutations produced in the genes of reproductive cells, such as sperm in the male and ovum in the female, are passed on to offspring. Mutations and any changes produced in other body cells are not transmitted. For example, if a woman were to lose her hand this situation would not result in her baby being born with a missing hand. Likewise, even if an ape ever learned to walk upright, it could not pass this characteristic on to its descendants. Thus, modern biology has disproved the once-held theory that acquired characteristics from the environment can be transmitted into the genetic code of offspring. Many biological variations within a biological kind (varieties of humans, dogs, cats, horses, mice, and other animals) are the result of new combinations of already existing genes and not because of mutations.

DEOXYRIBONUCLEIC ACID (DNA)

Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is one of two types of nucleic acid (the other is RNA); a complex organic compound found in all living cells and many viruses. This is the chemical substance of genes. Its structure, with two strands wound around each other in a double helix to resemble a twisted ladder, was first described (1953) by Francis Crick and James D. Watson. Each strand is a long chain (polymer) of repeating nucleotides: adenine (A), guanine (G), cytosine (C), and thymine (T). The two strands contain complementary information: A forms hydrogen bonds (see hydrogen bonding) only with T, C only with G. When DNA is copied in the cell, the strands separate and each serves as a template for assembling a new complementary strand; this is the key to stable heredity. DNA in cells is organized into dense protein-DNA complexes called chromosomes. In eukaryotes these are in the nucleus, and DNA also occurs in mitochondria and chloroplasts. Prokaryotes have a single circular chromosome in the cytoplasm. Some prokaryotes and a few eukaryotes have DNA outside the chromosomes in plasmids.

Thus, what we call “genes” are actually segments of the DNA molecule. DNA, or the genetic code, is composed of a molecular string of various nucleic acids (chemical letters) which are arranged in a sequence just like the letters found in the words and sentences of a book. It is this sequence of nucleic acids in DNA that tells the cells of our body how to construct (or build) various proteins, tissues, and organs such as nose, eyes, brain, and other body parts. If the nucleic acids in the genetic code are not in the correct sequence then malfunctioning, or even worse, harmful proteins may form causing serious health problems and even death.

There is no law in science that nucleic acids have to come together in a particular sequence. Any nucleic acid can just as easily bond with any other. The only reason for why nucleic acids are found in a particular sequence in the DNA of the cells of our bodies is because they are directed to do so by previously existing DNA. The DNA of the old cells direct the formation of new DNA in the new cells, when new cells form in our bodies.

The common belief among Darwinists is that, during given millions of years, radiation and other environmental forces will cause enough random changes (mutations) to occur in the sequential structure of the genetic code of a species so that entirely new sequences for entirely new genes will develop which in turn will program for the formation of entirely new biological features, organs, and structures that natural selection can then act upon. Would it be rational to believe that by randomly changing the sequence of letters in a cookbook that you will eventually get a book on astronomy? Of course not! And if the book were a living being it would have died in the process of such random changes.

Such changes, as transforming one book into another or the DNA of one species into the DNA of another, especially one more complex, simply cannot occur by random or chance alterations. It would require intelligent planning and design to change one book into another or to change the DNA of a simpler species into the DNA of a more complex one. While the raw biological materials and chemicals to make entirely new genes exist in every species, the problem is that the random forces of nature (radiation) simply have no ability to rearrange those chemicals and biological materials into entirely new genes programming for entirely new biological features. Again, mutations only have the ability to produce variations of already existing biological features. It would require intelligent manipulation of genetic material (genetic engineering) to turn a fish into a human being. The random forces of the environment cannot perform such genetic engineering.

If the environment doesn’t possess the ability to perform genetic engineering and if macroevolution really did not occur then how else can one explain the genetic and biological similarities which exist between various species and, indeed, all of life. Although it cannot be scientifically proven, creationists believe that the only rational explanation for the genetic and biological similarities between all forms of life is due to a common Designer who designed and created similar functions for similar purposes and different functions for different purposes in all of the various forms of life from the simplest to the most complex.

If humans must use intelligence to perform genetic engineering, to meaningcompletely manipulate the genetic codes, then when, where, and how did genetic codes originate?  Many have confused natural selection with evolution itself. While Charles Darwin did show that natural selection occurs in nature, what many don’t understand is that natural selection itself does not produce biological features or variations. Natural selection can only “select” from biological variations that are produced and which have survival value.

The real issue is what biological variations can be naturally produced. What biological variations are naturally possible? When a biological change or variation occurs within a species and this new variation (such as a change in skin color, etc.) helps that species to survive in its environment then that variation will be preserved (“selected”) and be passed on to offspring. That is called “natural selection” or “survival of the fittest”. But, neither “natural selection” nor “survival of the fittest” has anything to do with producing biological features and variations.

The term “natural selection” is simply a figure of speech. Nature, of course, does not do any active or conscious selecting. It is an entirely passive process. Darwin did not realize what produced biological variations. Darwin simply assumed that any kind of biological change or variation was possible in life. However, we now know that biological features and variations are determined by the genetic code. Natural selection works with evolution but it is not evolution itself. Again, because natural selection can only “select” from preexisting biological genetic information derived from variations within the plant and animal populations, the real question we should be asking is what kind of biological variations are naturally possible? How much biological variation is naturally possible in nature? Because we have seen that all biological variation is limited in every plant and animal population group.

TRANSITIONAL ORGANS AND LIFE FORMS NEVER EXISTED IN NATURE

Another reason for why macroevolution is not possible in nature is because a half-evolved and useless organ waiting millions of years to be completed by random mutations would be a liability and hindrance to a species and  not exactly a prime candidate for natural selection. In fact, how could species have survived over millions of years while their vital organs were still in the process of evolving? How, for example, were animals breathing, eating, and reproducing if their respiratory, digestive, and reproductive organs were still incomplete and evolving? How were species fighting off possibly life-threatening germs if their immune system did not completely evolved yet? Creation science researcher,  Dr. Walt Brown, in his masterpiece “In The Beginning”, makes this point by saying, “All species appear completely developed, not partially developed. They show evidence of design. There are no examples of half-developed feathers, eyes, skin, tubes (arteries, veins, intestines, etc.), or any of thousands of other vital organs. Tubes that are not 100 percent complete are a liability and so are partially developed organs and some body parts. For example, if a leg of a reptile were to evolve into a wing of a bird, it would become a bad leg long before it became a good wing.”

Usually what is meant by the term “biological kind” is a natural species but this may not always be the case. The key to keep in mind here is that in order for evolution in nature to occur from one biological “kind” to another biological “kind” entirely new genes would have to be generated and not just merely modifications and recombination of already existing genes. If, for example, offspring are produced which cannot be crossed back with the original stock then there is a new species but if no new genes or biological features developed then there is no macro-evolution (variation across biological kinds) and the two distinct species would continue to belong to the same “kind”. Science cannot prove we are here by creation, but neither can science prove we are here by chance or macro-evolution. No one has observed either. They are both accepted on faith. The issue is which faith, Darwinian macro-evolutionary theory or creation, has better scientific support.

If some astronauts from Earth discovered figures of persons similar to Mt. Rushmore on an uninhabited planet there would be no way to scientifically prove the carved figures originated by design or by chance processes of erosion. Neither position is science, but scientific arguments may be made to support one or the other. Whet we believe about the subject of origins lays the intellectual foundation for we believe concerning everything else. In other words, the subject of origins influences our philosophy and value of life as well as our view of ourselves and others. This is no small issue. Just because the laws of science can explain how life and the universe operate, function, and work does not mean there is no Creator and Designer of the universe. Would it be rational to believe that there is no designer behind airplanes because the laws of science and engineering can explain how airplanes operate and work?

Natural laws are adequate to explain how the order in life, the universe, and even an automobile operates, but mere undirected natural laws can never completely explain the origin of such order. Of course, once there is a complete and living cell then the genetic program and biological mechanisms exist to direct and organize molecules to form into more cells. The question is how did life come into being when there was no directing mechanism in nature? An excellent article to read by creation science researcher and biochemist Dr. Duane T. Gish is “A Few Reasons an Evolutionary Origin of Life Is Impossible”.

There is, of course, much more to be said on this subject. Scientist, creationist, debater, writer, and lecturer, Dr. Walt Brown covers various scientific issues (fossils, so-called transitional links, biological variation and diversity, the origin of life, comparative anatomy and embryology, the issue of vestigial organs, the age of the Earth, etc.) at greater depth on his website at http://www.creationscience.com.

It is only fair that evidence supporting intelligent design theory be presented to students alongside of evolutionary theory, especially in public schools, colleges, and universities, which receive funding from taxpayers who are on both sides of the issue. Also, no one is being forced to believe in God or adopt a particular religion; therefore, there is no true violation of separation of church and state.

PRIMARY SOURCE: The author, Babu G. Ranganathan,

ong> is an experienced Christian writer. Mr. Ranganathan has his B.A. degree with concentrations in theology and biology. As a religion and science writer he has been recognized in the 24th edition of Marquis Who’s Who In The East. The author’s articles have been published in various publications including Russia’s Pravda and South Korea’s The Seoul Times. The author’s website may be accessed at: www.religionscience.com.

ADDITIONAL SOURCES: Creation; Dr. Grant R. Jeffrey; 2003.Genesis One; Dr. Gerald Schroeder With Zola Levitt; 1998.Genesis and The Big Bang; Gerald L. Schroeder, Ph.D.;1992.Inspired Evidence; Bruce Malone;2011.Starlight and Time; D. Russell Humphreys, Ph.D.; 1990.Rethinking Genesis; Duane Garrett; 2000.The English Septuagint Version, Sir Lancelot C. L. Brenton; 1851.The Genesis Conflict; Dr. Walter Veith; 2002.The New Answers Book1; Ken Ham; 2006.The New Answers Book2; Ken Ham; 2008.The New Answers Book3; Ken Ham; 2010.The New Answers Book4; Ken Ham; 2014.The New King James Version; Thomas Nelson; 1982.The Speed of Light Commentary; Barry Setterfield; 1998.The Signature of God; Grant R. Jeffrey; 2010.Three Views on Creation and Evolution; J.P. Morland & John Mark Reynolds; 1999.Unveiling Mysteries of the Bible; Grant. R. Jeffrey; 2002.

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