Can This Be Science?
By Jeremy K. Moritz
As a tax-paying American, I would like to think that the money from my tax dollars that goes into public school is being spent to provide students with the best education possible--that the curriculum chosen to teach the next generation would contain the most accurate, up-to-date information available. I would suggest that America has done a reasonably good job of following these ideals as they relate to most subjects. There is, however, one highly significant exception. High schools all over the country are teaching the theory of evolution as though it were the established fact of the origins of the earth and all of life on earth as we know it.
The theory is hugely popular because it doesn't associate itself with any one organized religion. "[People] like to believe in evolution because evolution leaves man accountable only to himself" (Roberts). The real problem arises when the theory is tested with established scientific principles and logic. Numerous evidences and outright proofs have shown that what evolution teaches—life originally began from non-life and mutations and natural selection aided the transformation of species into more complex ones—isn't plausible science. The theory has insurmountable flaws.
First of all, let us look at what exactly is taught by the theory of evolution. According to the speculation, we all have the same common ancestor—the first living cell—which reproduced itself many times over, and its offspring reproduced themselves and so on and so on. Only after the first appearance of life could the two main elements of evolution science (mutations and natural selection) come into play. In all of the many reproductions, eventually some mutations—changes in genetic code—occurred, and a few of those were positive changes. Over time, there were multi-celled organisms acting in the same way until more and more varied living things thrived. Once animals began developing, competition reigned as the leading factor in determining which species of animals would continue and which would die off—evolutionists call this process natural selection. So, due to many haphazard mutations and natural selection, species became more and more complex over time until we end up with all of life just as we know it.
A simple analysis of the evolution argument shows several very problematic situations; I will address only a few of the many. Let us first look at how it all could have started. How did we get a living cell out of nonliving matter? Evolution tries to deny the obvious fact that "Only life produces life" (Frair 92) and claims that the very first living cell was formed in a giant primordial soup. The right chemicals, parts, lightning, etc. all came together by sheer chance in such a way that a single living cell was created. In the early days of evolutionary theory, scientists often called this a "simple cell" (assuming just that: there wasn't much to it). At the time, with the crude microscopes available, almost everyone operated under the assumption that, because cells were unbelievably small, they could not possibly be very complex. Now, however, thanks to the science of cell-molecular biology, scientists have come to understand that the "simple cell" is actually far more complex than the greatest supercomputer ever created by man. So much order and specificity are needed to sustain life that there isn't—nor could there ever have been—a single living cell on the face of the planet that could even remotely be considered "simple." How then, can one expect such a cell to have come about by chance? The answer for the evolutionist lies in the span of time.
Evolutionists assume the earth to be anywhere from 4 to 6 billion years old. They would argue that, given that amount of time, almost anything is possible. That might sound somewhat reasonable at first, but is it really enough time to account for all of life as we know it? It doesn't seem quite so long once one really examines the nature of blind chance. To do this, we look to the Laws of Probability.
Around one hundred years ago, evolutionists proposed an idea that, if a thousand monkeys began typing on a thousand typewriters non-stop for a thousand years, they would eventually recreate by chance the entire works of William Shakespeare. Somehow, this seemed to make sense to a lot of people when the idea was first presented. The underlying concept is the very stanchion evolutionists have been leaning on since the beginning of the theory: given enough time, anything is possible. Well, it didn't take long before the science of probability was applied to this hypothesis. According to these laws—which govern every chance operation that could ever take place—in all of that time, those monkeys would most likely never even once create a single, coherent sentence of five words or more. No one who truly understands the nature of blind chance would even consider believing that two consecutive, complete sentences might accidentally come about this way—let alone Shakespeare!
How do the Laws of Probability work? The answer might best be explained with an example. Let us suppose that you had in your hand a bag with 10 coins numbered 1 through 10. Now imagine that you were asked to blindly draw out the number 5. Because there is only one coin marked "5" out of 10 coins, your chances of drawing it correctly are clearly 1 success in 10 tries or 1 in 10. If, with every mistake you made, you were to put the coin back in the bag before drawing again, it could be expected that you would draw the "5" approximately one time for every 10 chances you gave yourself.
What if you were asked to draw a "5" followed immediately by another "5"? Many people would multiply 10 by 2 and take this probability to be 1 in 20, but it is in fact much smaller than that. Because the next "5" must immediately follow the first—or else, start from scratch—the formula for finding the probability would be 1 in 102 or 1 in 100. The event would probably occur only once in 100 tries. Similarly, if you were asked to draw a "6" followed by a "2" followed by a "9," in that exact order—each time replacing the pieces—your chances of success would be 1 in 103 or 1 in 1000.
Now, suppose your bag contained 53 Scrabble pieces: 26 representing every uppercase letter of the alphabet, 26 for each lowercase letter, and 1 more representing a space. And imagine that you were asked to spell out the phrase "The Theory of Evolution" using the very same method described above. Knowing the nature of blind chance, you probably wouldn't accept the offer would you? What if you were offered a million dollars if you could do it without cheating? How about a billion? I, for one, would not accept the challenge for any reward, and here is why:
The aforementioned phrase contains 23 variables (letters and spaces), which means that your chances of drawing correctly without the use of intelligence are 1 in 5323 (1 in 53^23 which is 1 in 4.5 * 10^39... a 40-digit number). Even if you had a drawing machine that could blindly draw out scrabble tiles at the unbelievable rate of 1 billion draws per second without ever stopping, the job would still take more than 1.69 x 1014 years. That is literally more than 28 trillion times the assumed age of the earth! "This is not a matter of opinion or subjective classification, but a measurable reality" (Grasse qtd. in Johnson 18). And let me remind you that we're talking about a job that a child could do in minutes—if not seconds—using intelligence. When compared with the power of intelligence, chance frankly "doesn't stand a chance."
If it takes blind chance trillions of trillions of years to spell out a simple phrase, how could anyone imagine that a single cell—the complexity of which still boggles the human mind—might come about in a mere 6 billion? It doesn't seem like such a long time when placed in the proper context. A single cell is made up of hundreds of thousands of protein molecules, "and Harvard University paleontologist George Gaylord Simpson tells us that a single protein molecule is the most complicated substance known to mankind" (Kennedy 53)—composed of thousands of amino acids all linked together in highly specific formations. A close look at cells will clearly show that "a type of complexity exists—irreducible complexity—that cannot possibly have arisen as the result of natural, evolutionary processes" (Shanks).
Dr. James Coppedge, Ph.D., director of the Center for Probability Research in Biology in California, applied all the laws of probability studies to the possibility of a single cell coming into existence by chance. He found that, even if all of the necessary components to sustain life were present from the beginning and even if amino acids were somehow able to bind at a rate one and one-half trillion times faster than they do in nature, it would still take chance combination 10262 years to create one protein! But of course, one protein by itself is worthless without hundreds more in exactly the right sequence. The second protein in the sequence would actually be infinitely more impossible to create than the first, and the third protein even less likely than that! "To get a single cell—the single smallest living cell known to mankind—which is called the mycroplasm hominis H 39, would take 10119841 years" (Kennedy 54). To put it in perspective, getting that cell in a matter of 6 billion years would literally be less likely than randomly finding the only needle in a stack of hay that is larger than the entire known universe! That is not an exaggeration in the least.
Eventually, our minds must come to accept the fact that blind chance could never account for the formation of a single living cell. Yet the entire theory of evolution rests on this very shaky foundation. Even if a living cell could have come about by chance, without a means to reproduce itself, it would be utterly worthless in spawning any evolutionary processes—that requires DNA, which is far more complicated than every other aspect of a living cell.
Evolutionists choose to ignore the well-known complexity of DNA because it is in absolute conflict with one of the most important elements in their theory: mutations. Their explanation for all variety of life forms hinges on the belief that enough positive genetic mutations occurred during reproduction to account for members of one species changing into another species over time. As in every aspect of the theory of evolution, this idea creates huge problems. Genetic code is extremely exact in its duplication. When a cell recreates itself, the genetic makeup of the second cell is absolutely identical to that of the first. Genetic mutations have been known to occur but only once in every 10,000 live births, and in 100% of the cases, they are damaging to the organism—of no evolutionary benefit whatsoever, usually leaving the organism dead or sterile—or at best, neutral. It would be an absolute impossibility for any mutations to be positive because the process involves nothing more than the haphazard jumbling of a previously working, ordered sequence of genes—not the introduction of new genes—so that no animal could end up with new, positive features. "Trying to improve an organism by mutation is like trying to improve a Swiss watch by dropping it and bending one of its wheels. Improving life by random mutation has a probability of zero" (Petersen 84).
The next immensely problematic leap of faith one must take to believe in evolution is the jump from one-celled organisms to multi-celled organisms. They are dissimilar in almost every way—most noticeably in the observation that multi-celled organisms contain systems involved in interaction with other cells while one-celled organisms are entirely independent. Cells reproduce at alarming speeds, and scientists have been observing them for decades—meaning they have seen an enormous number of reproductions. But what they don't find are single-celled organisms reproducing themselves to create working organisms consisting of more than one cell. How could it? That would require a drastic change in the entire structure of the cell. If we can take the mental stretch to believe that's possible, we might just as well be concerned that the family parakeet might have puppies! Reproduction simply does not work that way.
This is certainly not the only leap of faith taken by evolutionists, however. We are supposedly all interrelated, but no plausible explanation has ever been given for the huge, colossal gaps between major groups of living organisms. It may seem easy to believe that a frog could evolve into a toad, but where is the "link" between plants and animals? Evolution doesn't explain what kinds of species lie between fish and amphibians, amphibians and reptiles, reptiles and birds, birds and mammals, or mammals and autonomous human beings. If species slowly evolved through these groups, why aren't there any still in the process of evolving? In theory, there should be immensely more species in transition than in there are in each defined group. But as it stands, every known organism, living or dead, fits nicely into some specific species.
The theory of evolution creates many new problems for every one it tries to solve. To advance the theory, one must turn a blind eye to the impenetrable problem of the origin of life, the insurmountable fallacies of mutations, the self-contradictions of natural selection, the complete absence of transitional species in the fossil record, and countless other dilemmas. As a scientific theory, it does not deserve to be taken seriously after all of these years of enlightenment on the complexity of living things and the understanding of the laws of probability. Yet, in spite of the obvious flaws, "harebrained and impossible concepts are being dressed in a cloak of respectability and promoted as serious science" (Ackerman 47).
It takes far more faith to believe that we are an accident of nature than it does to believe that "life is the result of creative design and intelligence" (Parker 13). If science class were concerned only with truth, this claim would not continue to be passed off as though it were proven fact. I submit that the largest reason it continues is because the clearest account for our origin involves an intentional creator—an idea that is a taboo subjects for teachers today. But which is more important: separating church and state or promoting the search for objective truth? It is my hope that one day, that focus on objective truth will be reestablished and applied to the teaching of science in public school.
Ackerman, Paul D. It's a Young World After All: Exciting Evidences for Recent Creation. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1986.
Frair, Wayne. A Case for Creation. Lewisville, TX: Accelerated Christian Education, Inc., 1983.
Johnson, Phillip E. Darwin On Trial. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1993.
Kennedy, D. James. Why I Believe. Nashville, TN: Word Publishing, 1999.
Parker, Gary E. Creation: The Facts of Life. San Diego, CA: CLP Publishers, 1986.
Petersen, Dennis R. Unlocking the Mysteries of Creation. South Lake Tahoe, California: Christian Equippers International, 1986.
Roberts, Paul C. "'Evolution' Loses Its Grip." Insight on the News. 15(1999): 44.
Shanks, Niall. "Redundant Complexity: A Critical Analysis of Intelligent Design in Biochemistry." Philosophy of Science. 66(1999): 268.
Written in 2001 by Jeremy K. Moritz.
See also: HELL: Eternal Torment or Complete Annihilation? by the same author for a detailed study on what the Bible really teaches about the fate of the unsaved.
Or check out: Regarding Salvation by the same author for a detailed study on what the Bible teaches about what one must do to be saved.