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Intelligent Design as Science Part 6 Reasons to Accept Design

My atheist science teacher and I met for over a year.  One day at lunch, I came to his room prepared for war.  I wanted him to summarize the important things we had discussed.  So I went to his chalk board and began to write.

  • How did the universe get here?  He replied I don’t know.
  • Why is the universe designed perfectly for life?  John said I don’t know.
  • How did life begin?  Perplexed he said I don’t know.
  • How did early life become so complex?  Frustrated he replied I don’t know.

I said to him, John if you don’t have any good answers, why don’t you believe it was done by an intelligent designer?  He then said, “I believe science will discover the answers to these questions within the next 25 years.”

Fair enough, but let me make four quick observations about this remark.

− First, it’s a tacit admission science doesn’t have the evidence.

− Second, the intelligent design answer is not a default position based on what we don’t know (God of the gaps), but rather on what we do know.

− Third, sometimes the current evidence is so decisive, it’s hard to imagine it being overturned. It may be theoretically possible that a man with 5 bullet holes in his chest died from natural causes, but is it most reasonable?

− Finally, what really matters is the evidence at hand, not what might be produced in the future (no science of the gaps).

a. When, and if, new facts come to light, then we’re free to reassess.

b. The most useful conclusions are based on present facts, not future fantasies.[1]

I believe John’s beliefs are based on blind faith.  He believes in science of the gaps.  John has the gaps, not me.  Intelligent design has answers that he doesn’t have.  He refuses to believe in an intelligent designer, in spite of the fact he doesn’t have the answers.  As the Apostle Paul states, when he dies and stands before God he will be without an excuse (Rom. 1:18-20).  He rejected the evidence for the year and half we met and continues to follow atheism today.

Our discussions were 16 years ago and science still has no answers.  His time is running out.

My hope is this series has strengthened your faith based on the evidence.  If you do share with a non-Christian, just remember the Holy Spirit loves to use good arguments to drive people to the foot of the cross.  Lovingly present the truth and let God worry about the results.

 

[1] All 4 points taken from Greg Koukl’s audio teaching, “Why I am not an Evolutionist.”

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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Edgar Ayala June 13, 2014, 1:23 pm

    I’m having trouble finding how any of these points are legitimate reasons to believe in a designer. I myself am a Christian and do believe a designer but i don’t find any of these points to be anything other than “the God of the gaps” reasoning. Science does have an answer to how early life became so complex, science has an answer to the beginning of the universe (and the “something from nothing” problem, and the universe is not designed perfectly for life. Earth is one of the very few lucky planets with the right conditions to support life and even on the planet we are constantly battling death.

    As for the “science of the gaps” thing, science provides truth through data, evidence, and testing and will keep providing answers to things we don’t know as long as they are within nature. Science is closing those gaps in which we put God, not creating them.

  • Steve Bruecker June 13, 2014, 3:01 pm

    Hey Edgar,
    How are you doing? Glad you are reading and challenging my posts. “God of the gaps” is a philosophy that says we have no evidence and so we are going to use God as the answer. I didn’t do that. My entire series gave natural evidence pointing to intelligent design. I showed material science has no answers and the evidence points towards intelligence. You say science provides data, evidence, and testing. So does intelligent design. Both disciplines use the scientific method. Then when it is time to explain the evidence, when it points to a material cause I have no problem with that. But when the evidence points towards intelligence, why can’t that be considered?

    You said, “Science does have an answer to how early life became so complex, science has an answer to the beginning of the universe (and the “something from nothing” problem, and the universe is not designed perfectly for life. Earth is one of the very few lucky planets with the right conditions to support life and even on the planet we are constantly battling death.” Please provide a scientific explanation for life coming from non-life. What is your evidence for the irreducible complexity of the cell? The current scientific answer to the beginning of the universe is the big bang. Where did the matter come from? Where did the power to send the matter outward come from? The best answer science has is “everything came from nothing.” This is a ridiculous answer but scientists have resorted to this sort of thing. A big bang needs a BIG BANGER! Genesis 1:1 provides the best answer. As far as design the odds for a life supporting planet is 1 chance in 10 with 138,000 zeros after it. This number prohibits luck. You would have to have blind faith to believe we just were lucky.

    The entire series gave scientific answers and then made an inference to the best explanation. The scientific community says only material answers count. Even if all the evidence goes against it, they still will only accept a material cause. This is not science; this is philosophy.

    Richard Lewontin, a renowned scientist, admitted this: “It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may happen.” Lewontin says scientists must come up with a naturalistic answer, no matter how counter intuitive it is. He says scientists are forced, even before looking at the evidence, to look for a material cause. Lewontin admits science has gaps in the evidence to support Darwinian Evolution.

    Edgar I hope that helps,

    Steve

  • Edgar Ayala June 13, 2014, 3:51 pm

    In reality Evolution has vast amounts of evidence to support it. I used to believe that it couldn’t be because of certain creature which appear to be irreducibly complex such as the bombardier beetle. It turns out that such a creature could come to be through means of evolution. There has been life created in the lab from lifeless chemicals. The process is not completely understood but we draw nearer to the solution as we continue searching for answers. In fact we have found that the early state of the earth made it very possible for the first cells to emerge from the chemicals which were abundant. Experiments have been conducted in which those exact conditions were replicated and structures with features of a simple cell arose.

    As for the something from nothing problem, if you were to remove all matter from the universe you would still have particles popping in and out of existence caused by nothing but the fundamental randomness of quantum mechanics. Things like this seem to have absolutely no logic to them simply because it doesn’t make sense to us. Deductive reasoning and philosophy will not always yield the correct answer.

  • Steve Bruecker June 20, 2014, 5:27 pm

    Edgar,
    When you say evolution, what do you mean? Have you read Michael Behe’s book Darwin’s Black Box? He devoted 3-4 pages showing why the bombardier beetle is irreducibly complex. He corrects bad thinking by both the creationists and Dawkins. If you want I can scan a few pages of Behe’s book and email it to you, so you can challenge him. The beetle’s defense system is incredibly complex. Do you understand irreducible complexity? How do you explain the construction of the bombardier beetle’s defense system from a step by step Darwinian model?

    If you think about it, just one cell of a bombardier beetle is irreducibly complex. And each cell can perfectly reproduce itself. A human cell is more complex than a lap top computer and yet, over and over it divides and reproduces. Can you explain how a cell can do that?

    You said, “There has been life created in the lab from lifeless chemicals.” This statement is false. A few amino acids have been produced but the Stanley Miller experiments used an atmosphere that was not like the early earth atmosphere. It has been discounted by many scientists. You will have to produce evidence for life coming from non-life.
    You then said, “The process is not completely understood but we draw nearer to the solution as we continue searching for answers. In fact we have found that the early state of the earth made it very possible for the first cells to emerge from the chemicals which were abundant. Experiments have been conducted in which those exact conditions were replicated and structures with features of a simple cell arose.” The actual state of affairs is science has no clue how life arose from non-life. That is why there is a push to find life on other planets and then postulate it was planted here on earth. The early atmosphere was too caustic for life to have arisen by the Darwinian process. It would have immediately died out. What evidence do you have the earth’s atmosphere was friendly to early life? How can early cells, more complicated than a lap top computer, arise billions of years ago and begin reproducing?

    Trying to bring quantum mechanics into the equation of the beginning of the universe has major problems. 1) There are at least 10 different interpretations of quantum mechanics. Are you an expert in understanding the 10 different theories of quantum mechanics? Please provide a basic understanding for all 10. 2) The big bang theory postulates all time, energy, space, and matter came into existence at a single point in time. Is current science wrong about the big bang? What is your evidence for energy being in existence before the big bang? 3) Just because we don’t know everything about quantum mechanics, doesn’t mean we can say it caused the beginning of the universe. There is a huge difference between what is possible and what is probable. Anything is possible. We could all possibly be brains in a vat (Matrix) but is it probable? You are going to have to give some sort of mechanism for the production of particles that have the ability to create the universe. Where did matter come from?

    If the form of the argument is valid and the premises are true, then the deductive argument has to be true. Here is the argument: Premise 1) whatever begins to exist has a cause, 2) the universe began to exist, and 3) therefore the universe has a cause. Since the universe cannot be caused by nothing (no thing) there has to be a cause. This argument is true unless you can prove my premises are false. Please this time don’t just say they are wrong, provide evidence.

    Steve

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