Site Map

 The Cross of Freedom

Intelligent Design vs Gradual Evolution

You published in OpEx (Oct 2, 2005) an article by Kenneth Keller and an open letter to the Kansas School Board by Bobby Henderson, both of which addressed the gradual evolution/intelligent design question.  I'd like to respond to those articles.

Let’s compare gradual evolution and intelligent design using scientific evidence.  Most folks who argue for gradual evolution trust scientific evidence and many folks who argue for intelligent design have come to realize that science can be a tool for them as well.

Related to gradual evolution, 145 years have passed since Darwin published his theory, and there is more than 100 times more evidence in the fossil record today than there was then, yet there is still no evidence, not a single piece, to show that any species ever evolved into a different species.  Darwin was not convinced of his own theory, but published it anyway because another scientist, Alfred Russel Wallace, was planning to publish a similar theory and Darwin wanted to be first.   Darwin figured that evidence to prove his theory would appear in time, but this has not occurred.   In fact, in 1980 it was declared by science that “The pattern that we were told to find for the last one hundred and twenty years does not exist”.  By 1990 there was overwhelming evidence that life could not have started on Earth by a series of random chemical reactions.   It was also accepted that the finds of early microfossils essentially disprove the possibility of randomness as the answer for life on Earth.  The evidence of the fossil record implies that life either was brought to Earth or was manufactured here by non-conventional forces.

Related to intelligent design, science indicates one or two “one-time occurrences not explained by known physics” (known in scientific jargon as a ‘singularity’) and several “fortuitous occurrences” in the formation of the universe and our solar system that makes even many scientists wonder how the universe came to be the way it is without help from outside our universe.  There isn’t room here for details, but these include the following:

  • The need for a force to start motion on the single point of matter prior to the “big bang” (a super black hole – which could not expand on it’s own)
  • The balancing, or “homogenizing”, of the early matter of the universe in the tiniest fraction of a second after the big bang (science calls this the “inflationary epoch”)
  • The precise timing of the cooling of the early universe to 3000 degrees Kelvin (to allow for the proper balance of nuclei of hydrogen and nuclei of helium before photons cooled below the point where they could knock electrons out of orbit around atomic nuclei, thus ensuring a balance between enough hydrogen to fuel stars and enough helium to form heavier elements)
  • The coordination of the formation of our planet with the occurrence of our sun’s T-Tauri phase (too early and earth is blown apart, too late and the oceans and atmosphere are blown away)
  • The combination of Earth’s size, distance from the sun, and nearly circular orbit (all needed to be within very precise specifications for life to exist here)
  • The formation of a magnetic field around our planet to deflect cosmic rays (Earth’s molten core maintains it, but is not sufficient to have initiated it)

Given these “coincidences”, and factoring in the laws of entropy (all systems left unattended - whether inert or living, complex or simple - tend toward ever-increasing disorder), it becomes pretty clear that what we see around us didn’t just “happen”.  To believe that it did is like owning an intricately carved piece of woodworking but believing craftsmen don’t exist and the beautiful piece of craftsmanship just happened on it’s own.

Additionally, the universe didn’t need to be created with a built-in aging factor as is often cited.  The stretching of space due to the expansion of the universe causes several things to occur, one of them being the stretching of time.  Matter, space, and time are inextricably linked.  If one were to calculate the effect of the stretching of space on time as science measures geologic time, and then compare this to the sequence of events revealed in Genesis, they would match so close it would surprise the devil out of you (literally).

So, in other words, we have something that cannot logically be defended: The theory of evolution has no evidence to support it (as a matter of fact, there is evidence to refute it), intelligent design has several scientific factors to support it, yet schools are forced to teach gradual evolution as fact and are barred from even mentioning intelligent design.  This doesn’t make sense.  (One thing I didn't include in my letter, but that is worth mentioning, is that Darwin's "Origin of Species" makes many references to intelligent design.  Isn't it puzzling that schools can teach Darwin's theory as fact, but must censor his work and conveniently ignore some of what he wrote?)

Here is something very interesting - in fact it defies logic.  Scientists who have done the calculations have shown that there has not been enough time in the lifespan of the universe for even single-celled life to have evolved on its own, much less for any life to have become sophisticated enough for inter-galactic space travel.  In other words, it couldn’t have come from somewhere else in the universe.  Yet, while many folks have no trouble believing in aliens, despite the evidence to the contrary, many of these same folks scoff at the notion of a supreme being who was already here.

The theory of intelligent design, and the problems with the theory of gradual evolution, should both be part of any science curriculum dealing with the formation of our universe for several reasons:

  1. There is scientific evidence to indicate that our universe would not look like it does without help from outside our universe.
  2. There is a glaring lack of evidence for gradual evolution, even given the size and scope of the fossil record.   In fact, the fossil record shows gradual evolution to be impossible.
  3. The earliest discussions of intelligent design are recorded in some of the oldest written material known to mankind, in a book that has a wider distribution and has sold more copies than it’s next 3 or 4 competitors combined.
  4. Intelligent design has been taught and debated by humans for millennia.  While there is no incontrovertible proof (neither is there for gradual evolution), there is scientific evidence (which gradual evolution cannot claim).

Bobby Henderson’s letter to the Kansas school board, where he proposed his own theory of intelligent design, was entertaining but hardly informative. While his Flying Spaghetti Monster is cute, it has about as much relevance to the formation of the universe as Wile E. Coyote has to the history of fowl hunting in the southwestern United States.   Any theory to be presented in any educational environment should have a verifiable history, no scientific evidence to disprove it, leading minds to support it, and should be presented as a well thought out and reasonable hypotheses rather than a Saturday morning cartoon.  Does his theory meet these requirements?  The one he’s trying to keep out of the school system does.

Back to "Origins"

Site built by LutzGen