by Bill Nugent
What does an atheist do when he sees convincing scientific proof that evolution could not have given rise to life in all its varied forms? Does he “get religion?” Or does he continue his denial of God and search for another naturalistic explanation for life? Where is the last refuge of the damned? Perhaps it’s a bizarre new idea called Complexity Theory, but I’ll explain that later.
Biochemist Michael Behe, author of Darwin’s Black Box has written that cells typically have between 300 to 400 organelles called mitochondria that act as cellular factories and they have microscopic “railroad tracks” that run inside cells between mitochondria. Cells such as bacteria have miniature “outboard motors” composed of protein machine parts. To say that the first living cell could form by random processes in the prebiotic earth stretches credulity beyond the breaking point. In the last 50 years advances in electron microscopes have led to advances in cellular microbiology that have revealed a complexity of the cell far beyond what any scientist would have imagined.
Here’s a quote from a New York Times article written by Michael Behe:
“In 1998 an issue of the journal Cell was devoted to molecular machines, with articles like ‘The Cell as a Collection of Protein Machines’ and ‘Mechanical Devices of the Spliceosome: Motors, Clocks, Springs and Things.’ Referring to his student days in the 1960’s, Bruce Alberts, president of the National Academy of Sciences, wrote that ‘the chemistry that makes life possible is much more elaborate and sophisticated than anything we students had ever considered.’ In fact, Dr. Alberts remarked, the entire cell can be viewed as a factory with an elaborate network of interlocking assembly lines, each of which is composed of a set of . . . protein machines. He emphasized that the term machine was not some fuzzy analogy; it was meant literally.” From “The Basis for a Design Theory of Origins” by Michael Behe, The New York Times 2/7/05.
Such evidence screams that there is a God who created all things! As such mountains of evidence pile up against naturalistic evolution certain hard line evolutionists seem to be getting more desperate. The hard liners’ whole secular edifice is undergirded by Darwinism.
It is well known in psychology that people form opinions early in life during their impressionable youth. During the time of late adolescence to young adulthood, roughly the ages 18 to 22 years old, is a time when a young person comes of age and seeks to develop a platform of conclusions about the meaning of life. The young person develops these opinions about various aspects of life and makes an intense emotional commitment to these opinions. It is during these years that most genuine conversions to Christ occur. It is also during these years that most conversions to atheistic naturalism occur.
The raft of opinions adopted by the young person during late adolescence becomes the young person’s worldview. The worldview is the framework of fundamental ideas about the world, existence and destiny by which a person understands life. The worldview is the grid through which a person filters all knowledge and truth claims. It is therefore the set of presuppositions through which a person understands all data he or she encounters throughout life.
If a person has made a strong psycho-emotional commitment to naturalistic Darwinian evolution at an early age then every bit of data that would objectively seem to disprove this theory is either set aside or turned on its head. For instance when such a person reads of evidence of the immense complexity of single celled organisms he or she isn’t shaken from belief in evolution but simply says “Isn’t evolution grand!” This is the fortress of denial with which we must contend. Such ignorance on the part of those who refuse to abandon evolution can be overcome if we, with meekness and patience, continue to persuade them with the facts.
I don’t wish to leave the impression that all evolutionists are outrageously stubborn. I do commend the many fine scientists who have openly embraced Intelligent Design often at the risk of being turned out of their jobs. The Seattle based Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture is an organization of scientists who believe that an intelligent designer designed all living things.
There is, however, a radical core of hard line atheists who, while seeing the mounting evidence against evolution, have not turned to God. Some have clung desperately to the sinking ship of Darwinian evolution to defend it vigorously on all fronts.
Others have taken a different and disturbing course. They have rejected evolution yet still cling to naturalistic explanations for life. This it what could be called the last refuge of the damned. One such non-Darwinistic theory for the origin and development of life is called Complexity Theory which claims that life is self organizing in the same way that a hurricane self-organizes in a place of atmospheric low pressure. This sounds like a variant of the old discredited Affinity Theory that claimed that proteins could form in the primordial soup because the amino acids had an attraction or affinity for each other. Experiments soon showed the futility of such a notion when it was shown that the amino acids had no such affinity but had to be assembled or synthesized because they lacked affinity for each other. Walter L. Bradley Ph. D. has said that other molecules react more easily with amino acids than amino acids react with each other.
It is a pathetic sight to see fine scientific minds fleeing the clear evidence that points to the reality of the Creator. These otherwise intelligent people cling to Complexity Theory or some other similar last refuge in a vain attempt to prop up their secular worldview.
It all goes to show that we’ve got to reach people when they’re young. That fact makes it all the more disturbing that evolution is taught in schools at taxpayer expense. We are a multicultural society. Secularism is just one small subculture. There is no good reason why our educational system should bend over backwards to accommodate this one small subculture whose origins myth, evolution, is increasingly discredited by scientific evidence.