Creation Resources and Evidences

April, 2005
Dan Reynolds PhD

Recently I was asked to give a talk on resources available on creation. I expanded the topic to include best evidences for creation. This article is based on that talk. For resources, I will discuss some of the major websites and organizations. Many of these will probably be familiar to you if you have been interested in creation science for a while. For best evidences, I will discuss scripture, the origin of the universe, the origin of life, the origin of species, empirical detection of intelligent causes, and the age of the earth.

One of the best creation organizations is the Institute for Creation Research (ICR). ICR s website is at www.icr.org. Some of their ministries include seminars, debates, books and videos (in English and other languages), original research, field trips (Grand Canyon, Mount St. Helens, Galapagos Islands, and others), a graduate school (accredited, MS degree programs), a museum, and a weekly radio program (WPJL-AM 1240 at 11:45AM Saturday or download anytime from ICR s website). ICR has on staff several Ph.D. scientists including Henry and John Morris, Russ Humphreys, John Baumgardner, Duane Gish, Steve Austin, Gary Parker, Larry Vardiman and many others. Their most recent research initiative has dealt with Radiometric Dating and the Age of the Earth (RATE). A final report on the eightyear project will be published this fall. RATE has found evidence for the episodes of accelerated nuclear decay in the past among other things. RATE s main findings are available for free on the web at www.icr.org/research. ICR also offers free publications such as Act and Facts, a monthly newsletter discussing what s going on at ICR, and Impact, which usually deals with a science or scripture based topic. Both publications can be found on the web or you can request they be sent to you via e-mail or regular mail.

Another well known creation organization is Answers in Genesis (AIG). AIG s website is www.answersingensis. org. AIG has a huge FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) site dealing with most aspects of the creation/evolution issue. Other ministries include seminars, books and videos (in English and other languages), a world class creation museum (under construction), a radio program (on WDNZ AM 570), free PowerPoint downloads, field trips, cruises, and periodicals (see below). Their staff include: Ken Ham, Jonathan Sarfati, Jason Lisle, Carl Wieland, Mike Riddle, and many others. AIG has offices throughout the English speaking world. There are two quarterly magazines available by paid subscription: Creation with articles written for laymen and families and Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal. Many of the articles from both publications are available for free from the website.

The Creation Research Society (CRS, website: www.creationresearch.org) is a federation of hundreds of scientists with advanced degrees from all disciplines who believe in a literal interpretation of Genesis and a young earth. CRS ministries include original books, videos, CRSNet (creation list serve, only for members), an exhaustive directory of creation organizations worldwide, and a research center. CRSNet has about 120 active members which include noted creation scientists such as Russell Humphreys. CRS publishes the Creation Research Society Quarterly (CRSQ) and Creation Matters (monthly), both included with membership. Selected articles are available on the web for free.

Creation-Evolution Headlines is a website (http:// creationsafaris.com/crev200502.htm) which posts a new article on creation almost daily. The authors write articles covering essentially all aspects of the creation/evolution issue. For example, a recent article was entitled Dating Disaster: Is Neanderthal the New Piltdown? .

The Triangle Association for the Science of Creation (TASC) is, of course, a local creation group with several scientists on the board. TASC holds a monthly meeting on the second Thursday of each month at 7:30PM at Providence Baptist Church (currently in room 617) in Raleigh, North Carolina. Meetings typically feature a speaker or video with a creation topic. TASC also has a free monthly newsletter (you are reading it now), a new website (www.tasc-creationscience.org), and has a significant selection of books and videos. TASC issues a monthly newsletter, and back issues are available online. TASC is available to speak on a variety of topics at R 2 churches and schools; please see the website for more information.

The Discovery Institute Center for Science and Culture (www.discovery.org/csc/) is home for the Intelligent Design movement. Articles written by William Dembski, Michael Behe, Jonathan Wells, Stephen Meyer, Philip Johnson, William Lane Craig, JP Moreland, Paul Nelson, Charles Thaxton, and many others are available from the website. Books, DVDs, speaking schedules, and a FAQ are also available.

This summer (July 17-22) AIG, CRS, and other groups are holding a Creation Mega Conference (www. Answersingenesis.orgeventsmegaconference index.html) at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Twenty-five of the world s best creation scientists will present during the week. Speakers include Russell Humphreys, Ken Ham, Jonathan Sarfati, John Baumgardner, and many others. Two tracks, lay and advanced, will be offered. This is a rare opportunity to see and hear these people at a single conference at a location easily accessible to the Triangle. An Intelligent Design Conference with speakers such as Michael Behe and Jonathan Wells has been scheduled for August 4-6 in Greenville, South Carolina at the Palmetto ExpoCenter. Call 800-261-7063 and ask for Lewis Young or visit www.piedmonttravel.com for more details. AIG will be coming to Providence Baptist Church in Raleigh this fall; watch this newsletter or go the church s website (www.pray.org) for more details.

We ll now turn to creation evidences. From scripture let s consider the order of events in Genesis 1 as seen from young earth and day-age perspectives as well as the evolutionary point of view. The table below contrasts several events from the three perspectives.

From the table it is clear that progressive creation and evolution have more in common than either perspective have with the young earth position. This suggests that the true scriptural position is very different from the evolutionary view and that progressive creation is a compromise position.

 

Evolution

Progressive Creation

Young Earth Creation

Age of the Earth and Universe

Billions of years

Billions of years

~6,000 years

Days of Creation

Vast periods

Vast periods

Literal ~24-hour days

Sun, moon and stars

Stars formed before the earth

Created on day 1; appeared on day 4

Created on day 4 after the earth

Seventh Day

-

Continuing

Ended after ~24 hours

Physical Death

Always in the creation

Always in the creation

Entered after the fall

Species

Abiogenesis, macroevolution, microevolution

Each created individually

Created kinds which then microevolved

Animals

Fish evolved before birds, whales after land animals, birds after land animals

Animals created in the order found in the fossil record

Fish, sea mammals and birds created on same day and before land animals

Land Plants

Evolved after the sun formed

Created after the sun

Created before the sun on day 3.

Adam and Eve

Never existed as such; humans evolved after land mammals

Created 10-60K years ago, created after land mammals and soulless hominids

Created ~6000 years ago at the same time as land animals; hominids descended from Adam and Eve

Homo Sapiens

Descended from other hominids

Preceded by but not descended from soulless hominids

Descended from Adam and Eve

Atmosphere

Formed before the ocean

Formed before the ocean

Formed after the ocean on day 2

Oceans

Formed 0.8 billion years after the earth

Formed 0.8 billion years after the earth

Made the same day as the earth

Fossils

Record Laid down over millions of years

Laid down over millions of years

Laid down during the Flood

Noah's Flood

Local

Local

Global

Races

Evolved from a common ancestor

Created at Babel

Microevolved from Adam

The Hebrew word translated day in Gen 1:14-19 is yom as shown below:

14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day <3117> from the night and let them be for signs, and for seasons and for days <3117> , and years.

15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.

16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day <3117> , and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.

17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,

18 And to rule over the day <3117> and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.

19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day <3117> (day or span of millions of years?).

Gen 1:14-19 (KJV w/ Strong s Numbers from Englishman s Greek and Hebrew Concordances) <3117> = yom

The contexts in verses 14-18 unambiguously indicate that yom means an ordinary 24 hour day in those verses.

Progressive creationists would say that the meaning of yom in verse 19 must be a long period of time, but it is clear from the passage that the meaning remains in accord with the previous uses: an ordinary 24 hour day; to say otherwise is simply poor exegesis. Progressive creationists also claim that Noah s Flood was a local rather than global event, but scripture teaches otherwise:

And the waters prevailed, and were increased greatly upon the earth; and the ark went upon the face of the waters. And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered. Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains were covered. And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. Gen 7:19-22 (KJV)

A local flood also invites many questions: Why did Noah build the Ark? Why did God send every kind of animal to the Ark? Why was the Ark large enough to hold all the land vertebrates that have ever existed? Why were birds sent on board? How could the waters rise eight meters above the mountains if the Flood were local? If the Flood had been local, some people would have survived. Jesus said his second coming would be like the days of Noah (Matt 23:37, 2 Pet 3:3-7). Will God s judgment at the end of history be only partial? God would have broken his promise never to destroy the earth again by a flood (Gen 9:11-16) if the Flood had only been local.

The first and second laws of thermodynamics tell us that the amount of matter-energy in the universe is a constant and that the amount of useful energy is irreversibly decreasing. The expansion of the universe suggests that it began as a singularity. These facts, taken together, require that the universe had a beginning and therefore a cause which existed before time and the universe itself. The God of the Bible is a logical possibility.

Since the universe had a beginning, questions naturally arise: What was the origin of matter/energy? Why was there an excess of matter over antimatter? Why are the four fundamental forces (gravity, electromagnetism, the weak and strong nuclear forces) finely tuned so that human life can exist? If these forces were only varied slightly, stars would burn differently (too hot or too cold), the chemical properties of the elements would be different; indeed, the periodic table of the elements would be different. Organic chemistry and therefore life as we know it would be impossible. There are no easy naturalistic explanations for these questions. A finely tuned universe that had a beginning suggests an intelligent cause.

More fine tuning is evident in the earth s distance from the sun (we live in a narrow habitable zone of solar heat), the type of star the sun is (burns with the needed heat and light), the earth s magnetic field (which protects us from the solar wind), the size of the moon (stabilizes the earth s climate by maintaining the tilt of the earth s axis; allows for perfect solar eclipses which facilitated confirmation of Einstein s theory of relativity and study of the sun s atmosphere), earth s position in the Milky Way (which is relatively safe from supernovae and radiation compared to the galactic core and facilitates study of extragalactic phenomena), the presence of Jupiter (which protects the inner solar system from comets), the composition of the earth s atmosphere (protects us from UV light, is transparent), and the properties of water (its high heat capacity helps maintain the earth s climate; its solvent properties ideal for biochemistry). All these facts taken together strongly suggest design with a purpose rather than mere coincidence and chance.

There are other observations which suggest design: quantized galactic redshifts and the polarization of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation. Quantized galactic redshifts suggest the Milky Way galaxy is near the center of a series of concentric shells of galaxies. The redshifts would not appear quantized from any other location except the center. The polarization of the 4 CMB can be interpreted as the result of the universe rotating about an axis. A universe with a center and an axis of rotation is very different from that envisioned by the big bang theory and the cosmological principle. The cosmological principle says there are no special places in the universe no center, edge, or axis of rotation. If this unproved assumption turns out to be wrong, the big bang cosmology collapses. The probability we would be near the center of the universe by chance is extremely low. Once again design makes sense; evolution does not.

An expanding universe with a center and an edge would have unfolded very differently than in a big bang scenario. Russell Humphreys, starting with the assumptions of a center and edge, has developed a white hole cosmology which explains how we can see starlight from billions of light years away on a 6,000 year old earth. Einstein s general theory of relativity predicts that the rates at which clocks tick (as well as all other physical processes) are governed by the amount of gravity they experience: the more gravity, the slower the clock. This effect, known as gravity-time dilation, has been experimentally verified and must be taken into account for the proper functioning of the GPS system. Dr. Humphreys shows how different places in the universe would have experienced very different gravity fields during creation week. The earth, being near the center of gravity, would have experienced the greatest gravity field, and would have the slowest ticking clocks. The majority of the expanding universe, would have been in a relatively low gravity field where clocks would have ticked more rapidly. Thus while only days transpired on the earth, billions of years worth of physical processes took place in the expanding universe, providing plenty of time for the starlight to travel billions of light years.

Next we discuss the origin of life. It is well known that probability calculations give essentially no chance that proteins or nucleic acids of modest molecular weight could have formed by chance and natural processes, even over billions of years. Worse still, by standard geological dating there was at most only a few hundred million years. We now know from geochemistry and experiment that the early earth did not have the correct environment to facilitate the production of amino acids, one of the basic building blocks of all life. But even if conditions had been right, there would have still been many problems: the concentration problem (the primordial soup would have been too dilute to produce polymers), the chirality problem (only one of two possible three dimensional structures of amino acids are found in life, but both are formed in equal amounts in all known chemical processes outside of biology), the problem of side reactions (the same reactions that make amino acids and proteins also make unwanted amino acids and proteins), the oxygen problem (with oxygen, ozone forms and the UV light required to promote the reactions for formation of amino acids is blocked; without oxygen, the UV light which helps make the building blocks also destroys them), and the hydrolysis problem (proteins are cleaved by water to there constituent amino acids). To be sure, evolutionists continue to hold out hope they will find a naturalistic mechanism for the origin of life, but there is little cause for optimism given our current knowledge. No life has been found on Mars, on Titan, or by SETI. No earth-like planets have been found. Belief in abiogenesis is definitely faith based, as there is no scientific evidence to support it. At present, all the evidence suggests that the missing piece of the puzzle is intelligence, the one ingredient naturalism cannot admit.

Now lets turn to the origin of species. Direct observation has confirmed microevolution, but not macroevolution. The adaptations observed in microevolution are reversible and often associated with information loss, but never information gain. Most genetic mutations are harmful. Even the few positive mutations usually have a harmful component (for example, the same mutation which gives resistance to malaria also causes sickle cell anemia). There are several examples of adaptations emerging in just a few generations (faster than any known evolutionary process could operate) which were apparently builtin and triggered by the environment. Similar morphologies and chemical structures found when comparing organisms are evidence for a common creator, not necessarily a common ancestor. We now know that there are countless irreducibly complex biochemical systems (such as the bacterial flagellum) which defy evolutionary explanation. These systems require all their parts, properly fabricated, in order to function, and here is the dilemma: how could an evolutionary precursor have been selected if it lacked an essential part or a properly fabricated part?

The fossil evidence is the opposite of what Darwinism predicts. The Cambrian Explosion refers to the fact that essentially all known phyla appear at the base of the geologic column in a relatively thin band of sedimentary strata. There are almost no fossil precursors leading up to the abrupt appearance of these fossils. Since the Cambrian, no new phyla appear, but some vanish. This pattern of phyla in the fossil record has been referred to as the inverted cone of diversity because it is upside down from Darwinian expectations. The fossil record is characterized by stasis and extinction with very few (if any) intermediate forms. Attempts to explain the lack of intermediates such as the theory of punctuated equilibrium require several positive chance mutations occurring over brief intervals, very unlikely events.

For some time, evolutionists claimed that non-protein coding segments of DNA, known as introns, were remnants of ancestors left over from a wasteful and inefficient evolutionary process. This belief lead to the term junk DNA . Introns were thought to be functionless. Based on these assumptions, evolutionists predicted that in a given evolutionary line, the number of introns would increase in each succeeding generation. Recent studies, however, have shown that alleged ancestors often had as much or more introns than descendants. Moreover, evidence is mounting that junk DNA is able to regulate cell activity and repair genes. Just as evolutionists once incorrectly claimed that vestigial organs proved evolution, so the claims that introns are molecular proof for evolution seem to be falling by the wayside.

Many claim that the inference to design is not science. However, William Dembski has developed an explanatory filter for empirically detecting design. This filter allows empirical detection of intelligent causes. Biomolecules contain quantifiable complex specified information (CSI). Dembski has shown that chance processes can't create complex information and that physical laws can only transmit information but not create it. Chance/law processes (mutation/selection) can't produce CSI either. Dembski has shown that the universe over all its alleged history (from the big bang) until its heat death could not produce more that 500 bits of information (this corresponds to a chance occurrence with a probability of 1 out of 10150). He uses this amount of information as a limit to what nature can do; only intelligent causes can create CSI above this amount. As it turns out, there are thousands of molecules in living things which contain information in excess of this limit, clearly indicating an intelligent origin. Dembski has formulated the Law of Conservation of Information which states that natural processes can transmit or degrade complex specified information, but cannot create it. Despite Dembski s rigor, critics still claim that intelligent design is merely creationism in a cheap tuxedo. Yet SETI, which has the mission of detecting radio signals (read design) from alien civilizations, forensics, cryptology, and archeology enjoy scientific status. Dembski has also shown that evolutionary algorithms, which allegedly show evolution chance/law processes works, actually contain the very information they allegedly create.

We now turn to the final topic: evidence for a young Earth. Creationists have made much progress in the last decade in addressing radiometric dating, primarily through the RATE initiative. RATE has found solid evidence for episodes of rapid radiometric decay in the past (helium retention in zircons and biotite), probably before day 3 and possibly during the Flood. Isochrons of different elements from the same rock gave different ages, suggesting the amount of acceleration depends on the half-life and type of decay (alpha or beta) an element undergoes. The ubiquity of trace levels of radiocarbon (C14) throughout the fossil record, even from coal allegedly hundreds of millions of years old, has provided strong evidence of a recent and global flood which laid down the bulk of the fossil record. The instant formation of granites (a process which allegedly would have taken millions of years of cooling) has been established by the existence of parentless polonium radiohalos in the rocks. The Mount St. Helens volcanic eruption in 1980 has provided strong evidence for rapid geologic processes such as rapid canyon formation, rapid formation of petrified forests, rapid sorted sedimentary layer formation, and rapid peat bed formation, precursor to coal. Double polonium radiohalos found in coal from three geologic periods allegedly spanning in excess of 100 million years demonstrated the precursor trees were laid down by the same event over a brief period, most likely during the Flood. Also now well documented are examples of rapid stalagmite and stalactite formation, rapid fossilization, and rapid deep ice formation. The rate of decay of the earth s magnetic field indicates a young earth. Even if the field periodically reverses, the demonstrated energy decrease of the field through heat loss also disallows an old age for the field. The theory of Catastrophic Plate Tectonics has provided a successful model for how the Flood formed the continents rapidly and recently from an ancient supercontinent (Pangea) as well as an explanation for rapid and erratic reversals in the earth s magnetic field. As mentioned earlier, starlight from billions of light years away is scientifically consistent with a young earth as the white hole cosmology suggests.

A free download with additional information on creation websites, organizations, books, and videos is available at http://www.creationistrue.org/resources/pbc.htm.