Genetics

On the Origin of Humans

April, 2015

One of the key issues in the creation-evolution debate is the origin of humans, Homo sapiens.

What we think about the origin of our own species has a dramatic impact on our morality and wordlview because it answers the questions of who and what we are and why we exist. The secular and biblical views of our origins are diametrically opposed and must come to totally different conclusions about our place in the universe. Secular scientists tell us that the evidence that we evolved from a common ancestor with primates is “overwhelming.” But just how good is that evidence? The Bible teaches we were made in God’s image and designed to have fellowship with Him both now and forever. Recent results in the field of genetics have been remarkably in accord with the biblical model for human origins and inimical to evolutionary scenarios. Here we will compare the biblical and secular models for human origins and discuss recent science that supports the biblical view and/or discredits the evolutionary view. Specifically, we will discuss “junk DNA” as “evidence” for common ancestry, the real percent similarity of the human and chimpanzee genomes, the alleged historical fusion of two primate chromosomes that “prove” humans share common ancestry with primates, genetic evidence that Homo sapiens and Neanderthals interbred and were hence the same species, and genetic evidence that is consistent with Adam and Eve as well as Noah and his family.

Creation Ministries Creation 2015 International Superconference

October, 2015

Dr. Dan Reynolds attended the recent Creation Superconference held in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina July 13-17. Dr. Reynolds has provided us a summary of each of the sessions at the conference.

My wife, Cassie, and I recently spent a week in Myrtle Beach where I attended 19 of 20 talks on creation and related topics given at the Creation Ministry International (CMI) Creation 2015 Family Superconference. Cassie, while supporting my interest in creation, only attended one session and spent the rest of her time sewing on her portable sewing machine in our hotel room! The conference was held at the Springmaid Beach Resort located right next to the ocean. The accommodations, food, and staff were excellent. Mornings and evenings were filled with talks while afternoons had options for free time, a tour of a nearby aquarium with Dr. Robert Carter of CMI, or playing chess with Jonathan Sarfati, former chess champion of New Zealand. And as usual, there was an extensive bookstore offering hundreds of books and videos, often at reduced prices. I came home with a couple of bags full!

Materialism and Abiogenesis

March, 2016

By Bdna.gif: Spiffistan derivative work: Jahobr (Bdna.gif) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Figure 1 - DNA

The TASC newsletter article Fossils examined the fossil record as evidence in support of the theory of evolution. 1 The conclusion of that article, as well as of several evolutionists themselves, was that the fossil record did not provide evidence to support the theory of evolution. We might think, "Well, that doesn't matter, since evolution is so strongly supported by the genetic evidence." However, is it really? Let's look and see. We will look primarily at the genetic evidence. 

Is abiogenesis irrelevant?

The idea of life arising from non-life is known as abiogenesis. It might be argued that abiogenesis is not evolution and thus is irrelevant in a discussion of evolution. The line of reasoning is that evolution deals with how life evolves from pre-existing life via natural selection, or how more complex life arises from simpler life, which does not involve the origin of life. This is still life giving rise to more complex life, not life arising from non-life. Therefore, the argument goes, the question of how life arose from non-life is not part of evolution, and is therefore excluded from any discussion of evolution as not being relevant.

Creation Versus Evolution: TASC Question and Answer Panel

September, 2016

From time to time we find it beneficial to invite our members and guests of TASC to a question and answer panel on creation versus evolution. We believe it will help your faith and your ability to “give an answer for your faith.” We did this at our recent August, 2016, meeting. Several of our TASC board members participated including Mark Stephens, MCS, moderator of the panel, and panel members, Joe Spears, MS; Gerald Van Dyke, Ph.D.; Jeff Gift, Ph.D.; and Dan Reynolds, Ph.D., who was out of town but graciously submitted written answers to questions for all our benefit.

Evidences for a Recent Creation: Part 2

November, 2005

Part I mentioned helium retention in zircons and young carbon 14 dates as evidences for a recent creation and for an acceleration of decay rates in the past. Such an increase in decay rates should have more of an effect on ages computed from isotopes with long half-lives than elements with short half-lives.

Also, alpha decay and beta decay use different processes. Therefore they may not be affected the same amount by an increase in the decay rate. So discordances between alpha and beta decay ages are an evidence of disturbed decay. To sum up, the following are the evidences one would expect from accelerated decay in the past: Carbon 14 ages should be much younger than other isotopic ages like K-Ar, U-Pb, et cetera. Alpha and beta ages should differ. And ages computed from elements with long half-lives should be more affected than ages computed from elements with short half-lives.

Guinea Pigs & Humans - We Have A Lot More In Common Than Evolutionists Would Think

July, 2005

Toxicologists like myself make a living out of evaluating the impact of chemical exposures and other insults on the health of laboratory animals (we can't test humans after all). Rats and mice, members of the evolutionary order Rodentia, make up a large majority of these experimental animals. Ken Boschert, a veterinarian with Washington University's division of comparative medicine and the operator of a Web site called Net Vet (netvet.wustl.edu/) estimates that 99 percent of experimental animals nowadays are rats and mice, which are small, cheap to feed, and reproduce quickly. Rats and mice are also believed to share a closer evolutionary lineage to humans than other non-primate mammals. Yet, another familiar mammal, guinea pigs, are in many ways toxicologically and genetically more like humans than rats, mice and even our closest evolutionary cousins, the chimpanzee. 1 This article will relate evidence from personal experiences and readings that suggest that guinea pigs are more likely to have shared a common designer than a common ancestor with humans.

The Genographic Project: What is it? What does it Mean?

June, 2005

The new Genographic Project came to my attention as I read the USA TODAY, Life section, April 13, 2005. 1 After reading the article describing it, I realized that this new project, analyzing DNA of humans to tell us where we came from, could be of significant interest to creation scientists as well as naturalistic evolution scientists. It could help to provide scientific evidences supporting the Genesis account of the origin of humans and their subsequent migration around the earth or simply provide another version of naturalistic evolution supposedly adding new scientific evidences for that view. As usual, it will be a matter of how new genetic information gained will be interpreted and communicated to the world.

Racism: Human "Races" or "One Blood"?

April, 2004

"There is no way to understand the cultural cancer of racism until we seriously read the Bible. For this breathtaking collection of 66 books is completely silent on our modern concept of "races". Tragically, blacks, Orientals, whites—all of us—have been pushed into "boxes" (the metaphor for which is the stinking, grisly railroad car...of the Holocaust) and we have forgotten that God has "made of one blood all nations of men." (Acts 17:26). 1

"Junk" DNA as Evidence for Evolution?

January, 2003

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment."-Sherlock Holmes in a Study of Scarlet

Back in the 1960s, scientists discovered sections of DNA that did not code for proteins. These non-coding DNA strands were assumed to be non-functional and were referred to as "junk" DNA, the presumed evolutionary remnants of ancestral organisms. 1 Almost 99% of human DNA is known to be non-coding.

A little background will facilitate discussion of non-coding DNA. Information in coding DNA sequences is transcribed into mRNA (Figure 1). mRNA exits the nucleus and attaches to ribosomes, the molecular machines that generate proteins. In the ribosome, the information in the mRNA is translated into an amino acid sequence to form a protein.

Review of Replacing Darwin: The New Origin of Species by Nathaniel T. Jeanson

January, 2018

Dr. Nathaniel Jeanson's new book Replacing Darwin: the New Origin of Species 1 was released in October of 2017. Jeanson holds a doctorate in cell and developmental biology from Harvard (2009). He joined the staff at the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) in 2009 but has since moved to Answers in Genesis (AIG) where he is a research biologist, author, and speaker. Jeanson has written numerous lay articles, book chapters, and technical papers in secular and creationist journals. 2 He has also debated several evolutionists. 3 

In Replacing Darwin, Jeanson shows how the known data and principles of genetics fit biblical history as understood by young earth creationists (YECs). He develops a testable model of speciation consistent with Genesis and makes predictions. Jeason provides sufficient backgrounds in basic biochemistry and genetics for non-specialists to grasp his arguments. He has uncovered interesting relationships between speciation and time for several biological families.

The book includes copious endnotes and graphical illustrations, references, a glossary, but no index.

The following review will cover the book chapter by chapter.

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