What Darwin Didn't Know (Is What Some Folks Believe)

By Vaccaro, Jenna | The Humanist, January-February 2009 | Go to article overview
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What Darwin Didn't Know (Is What Some Folks Believe)


Vaccaro, Jenna, The Humanist


DID YOU KNOW that the existence of the Judeo Christian God is easily proved through a number of scientific laws and well-placed quotations from the Old Testament? Dr. Hugh Ross, an astrophysicist who is also an Old Earth creationist and the president of the organization Reasons to Believe, presented this theory at American University in Washington, DC, on October 23 at a lecture titled, "What Darwin Didn't Know."

I was extremely excited to see what this astrophysicist had to say to a room full of liberal arts students (myself included), but quickly felt awkward when members of the Chi Alpha Christian Life Fellowship handed out index cards with model questions and answers between atheists and Ross' followers. "Can humans design a perfect universe?" one asked. "FACT: The Bible reveals multiple purposes for the way God made this universe ... it serves as the perfect preparation for our entrance to the perfect 'new creation" yet to come" was the answer. Honestly, I got more factual information from pamphlet titled "Evolution in a Nutshell" handed out by a dissenter in front of the building! What Ross calls a "scientific model" is really just a statement of his faith.

Ross began the lecture by discussing general laws of physics, including the general law of relativity and the space-time theorem. He argued that evidence of God can be shown through a cosmic singular beginning, continual expansion, and continual cooling. He then quoted certain passages from the Old Testament that can be interpreted as "predicting" these laws of physics. For example, Isaiah 42:5 states: "This is what the Lord says--He who created the heavens and stretched them out." To Ross this is a symbol of the Big Bang having a "transcendent cosmic beginning" and a universe that is constantly expanding. He is confident that the Bible accurately predicts laws of physics more than any other religious text and that this is the evidence that proves Christianity is the right religion. Ross doesn't bother to acknowledge that the translation of the Bible that we have today is probably far different than the one that its original writers intended; the phrasing of the Bible passages Ross mentions could be entirely coincidental. It was no great shock to realize this isn't science, but an untestable theory.

Ross next moved into the areas of dark energy and gravity on earth. He breezed over some of the more complicated elements, leaving most of the audience a little confused. The essence of what followed was a laundry list of how the conditions that permit life to exist are too improbable to have happened randomly. We need the perfect sun, moon, earth, chemical content, and so forth to create life, the argument goes, so it must have been hand picked for us, right?

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