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Man vs God (a review)

Last weekend there were two articles in The Wall Street Journal billed as a debate on “Man versus God” in a discussion of “evolution, science and the role of religion.” The link to the articles is here.

Have you ever noticed that man always gives himself top billing? That should put the reader on the road to identifying exactly where God stands within these selections.

I would suggest that these pieces contain neither science nor debate, but rather appeal to the foundation of each writer’s own belief: one postulates that evolution explains both creation and the formation of life, while the second characterizes “God the Great Mechanick” as paraphrased from Newton, with the notion that religion is more understandable when viewed abstractly. What is clear is that there is a theology presented by both writers.

Mr. Richard Dawkins, author of the portion upholding evolution (and coincidentally the spontaneous generation of life), states the heart of his premise in a single sentence in the lead paragraph. “Evolution is the universe’s greatest work.” That statement, or any number of similar tomes, have been offered repeatedly and used in various forms to explain the outcome of what the proponents believe to have been random events; yet they always imply through the language that things are not random at all. Here it is classified as forces at “work.” From others it is called a stimulus, a response or an action; but whatever the misapplication, the language of the nonbelievers in intelligent design always imposes the verbiage of intelligence to explain it. And a careful reading will quickly identify the “force” of intelligence and decision making at work here while all the time random action and lack of order are touted.

Thereby Mr. Dawkins has fallen through a wide hole ripped inadvertently by the disciples of such things; those who cannot find intelligence unless we should mean of the type that comes from their own ratiocination. He becomes a member to a long standing company that has continuously offered a fundamental mistake in logic. The belief is that incomprehensible order arose straight out of the mud. That things started out of nothing when conditions just “got right.” The fault is that a universe, whether ours’ or anyone else’s, whether here or there, can do no work; it simply exists as it may remain in balance and conform to immutable law.

Physicist and Nobel Laureate Eugene Wigner once wrote that it is remarkable that there are laws of nature, and that we should be able to identify them, and that it is “a miracle” that we can restate them in the language of mathematics and physics. He called this, “a wonderful gift we can neither understand nor deserve.” But such knowledge can only truly exist or continue as “it is upheld by the word of God.” Intelligence, along with anything else we might mention, is not a random event. It comes closer to being a miracle than anything else we might be able to now observe. And for that we should thank God.

Mr. Dawkins continues to defy logic by suggesting that “life never violates the laws of physics.” He continues, “Nothing does (if anything did, physicists would just have to formulate new laws — it’s happened often enough in the history of science).” But a falsely accounted law is no law at all. Only those unalterable conceits that rest on principles and standards and are provable within our means by mathematics can earn title as law. These are given by God, who understands mathematics better than any of us. And there is no formulation of new laws — as if it were some college laboratory exercise. The laws of science reside exactly where they have always been even as they may remain unarticulated and improperly understood. Humankind cannot formulate them, make them, approve them or negate them. All we can do is to correctly identify them, adapt our instruction to them (if we possess the ability to do so), note them, and seek to categorize them and study to learn of their effects.

Science at its heart is in the calibration business. Where a known standard appears and is understood, that provable standard is applied to any exercise that can be found within its limits and domain. Those Primary Standards are what approve the laws of mathematics and nature, not the other way around (and none of it can reside in a random state). It, like good accounting, relies strictly upon the adherence to the process at work and putting the numbers together. Thereby we may understand such things as the relationships between velocity, mass and acceleration, isotropic and entropic conditions within thermodynamics, kinetic and potential energy exchanges, the movement and bonding of valence electrons, photon activity, the elemental makeup of the atom, and the placement of elements onto a periodic chart, to denote just a few.

Unfortunately for Mr. Dawkins and those who follow his line of “reasoning,” no such Primary Standards exist for anything within their realm. I know and have read that they live by the application of standards; but where pray tell are they? Where do the unchangeable things reside? There is no examination available. No set of laws can provide proof for a Big Bang, for it or any of its complement. They are not based upon laws, but on fanciful guessing. And although denied in this article, these lofty theories certainly do defy those Laws of Thermodynamics and every other law known in the application of mathematics and physics. That is precisely why they are called theories. There is simply no case at all for evolution, whether in creation or in species; as there are more holes there than were long ago found in Blackburn Lancashire, to use an unscientific postulation. It is all based in the nonsensical theory from the disenchanted and non-scientifically trained mind (with less training and formal education than I) of the son of a rejected and harsh father figure, himself a minister. There is no standard to apply or mathematical equation to test and upon which to rely, and therefore there is no calibration set. There is nothing to set to and nothing for comparison, nothing by which an equation may be accomplished, offered or proven; and therefore there is nothing upon which a law may rest. There is simply nothing at all but speculation and a few bags of improperly identified bones, which can never be placed correctly in time as no standard exists to test any of that either. And I mean that with a full understanding of radioisotopes and of their half lives.

But now, enter life.” This should require no comment. It is shaking and alone and preposterous, although its proponents and disciples, though learned, do not see.

Boom! There it is! Life just happened, just like the rest just happened. I’m surprised it took us so long to evolve. The Firesign Theater said it better: “In the beginning there were hot lumps – cold and lonely.”

The idle blastopod was floating about the ooze with nothing going on and then low and behold an amino acid fell into the slime having been cast off from a meteor collision. In the beginning there was random chemical bonding. Viola! Now we can have RNA. It was a matter of time before we would have gotten some random DNA up from the mush, and then life just popped up all over the place. You may think I have contrived this, but it is the prominent theory. It is the stuff of Nobel prizes. But, it is also a fable and an amalgam; relating an accident of such shocking proportion that it cannot be grasped by lucid minds. Order out of chaos and discipline out of nothing, and all arranged in letter and note to perfect symmetry. How random, how pattern less, how inconsequential — and my, how inconsistent. Is it worth mentioning again that there can be no science where there is no standard?

It is striking that Ms. Karen Armstrong fares no better with her dissertation in favor of God. She chose the well trodden path which leads to the same ground ardently held by the evolutionists and catastrophe theorists — it is a grassy knoll. She too offers no standard by which anyone may assess things. Casting off from the Word and reason she seeks to explain God through a reduced and difficult appeal to Newtonian theory. She presents God as being-less and formless and represented by interpretive art (idolatry) or with religion as an art form. She too is an unbeliever. Oh she may believe in something she has called god, but it might as well be a statue or a portrait, made of wood or stone in some forced idolatry. This statement is stunning coming from someone who is supposedly offering an argument for the existence of God. “Religion was not supposed to provide explanations that lay within the competence of reason but to help us live creatively with realities for which there are no easy solutions and find an interior haven of peace; today, however, many have opted for unsustainable certainty instead.” By unsustainable certainty I conclude that she is talking about a literal belief in God and his actual works. We should not worry. You may believe if you want too, and if you do, He will come by sometime to make you feel warm all over. God is just a phenomenon.

God, however, has said that “He is.” He stated that the evidence for his presence is empirical, scientific, and obvious. Now that is either true or not. If not, then why bother with any such an examination and straining through worldly wisdom to produce a proof set for the presence and existence of God?

And so now I have given it away — my bias. As I have said previously: I am eaten up with it. I actually believe what the Bible gives us; and I am perfectly satisfied with that. My belief is based on what the apostle Paul noted as information that is “God breathed” and then upon empirical and scientific evidence.

That same apostle wrote this. “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.

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, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.”

Futility and godlessness produces unfruitful works and worships the creature instead of The Creator. It produces the types of silliness present from both of these pens, as if the pens themselves might have created it through some random non intelligent action.