Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Darwin's Children

Commenter Escovado links to a rather profound article exploring the moral wasteland of the philosophy derived from natural selection.

Charles Darwin and the Children of the Evolution

Knowing how Bob loves to cite the certainty of evolutionary evidence, note these selection from the article and keep an eye out for the use of "scientific":

For many years after his death, Darwin’s racial theories remained the consensus position of the international scientific community. In 1906, the director of the Bronx Zoo decided to give New Yorkers an object lesson in human evolution by putting a 23-year-old Congolese pygmy on public display in his monkey house. The pygmy, Ota Benga, shared his cage with an orang-utan. The spectacle drew enormous crowds. Before long, they were asking the questions the exhibitors hoped they would: was Ota Benga an ape or a man? Or, as the zoo-keeper himself speculated, was this perhaps a transitional form between the two, the elusive missing link?

Darwinian ideas, eugenics and its ugly sister, eugenic euthanasia, were accepted by the mainstream of the German scientific and medical professions. Indeed, so convinced were the staff of the clinic at Kaufbeuren-Irsee in Bavaria that they were acting rationally that, even after Germany’s surrender in 1945, they carried on killing handicapped people under the American occupation, until a US officer led a squad of GIs to the hospital and ordered them to desist.

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Blogger fredsgirl said...

Dare we even bring up the relationship between abortion and eugenics here in the US?

1:18 PM, November 12, 2009  
Blogger Siarlys Jenkins said...

The operative word here is "derived." Darwin was a reasonably insightful little man who picked up on a few facts only a few people had noticed before, and managed to have connections to present them in circles where they would be noticed. Most biologists disagreed, Bishop Wilberforce offered a modest and well reasoned critique, mostly on grounds of science, not theology, and Darwin knew he was missing a whole lot. Over the next 150 years, thousands of people collected millions of bits of information which filled in some of the gaps and rendered the whole theory more and more substantial and sound.

Meantime, everyone with an ax to grind ran off with their own self-serving agenda, twisting the theory to show that there could not be a God (not sustainable from the evidence), twisting it another way to introduce the bastard Social Darwinism, and of course there were eugenics, and the Master Race, and all that horse manure.

Evolutionary biology isn't true because Darwin said so. Darwin is significant because he noticed a bit of truth amid a lot of dross, and others more insightful than he have filled in what he missed, also disproving what he had wrong. There is no "missing link" because life doesn't work like that. We all emerged from a genetic bottleneck, probably within the last 50,000 years. What use the Nazis made of the theory, they brought to it themselves. It wasn't there waiting for them. Ditto that misbegotten Baptist Sunday School teacher and foremost practitioner of social darwinism, John D. Rockefeller.

5:56 PM, November 13, 2009  
Blogger Escovado said...

@Siarlys Jenkins

Despite the “millions of bits of information” discovered in the 150 years since Origin of Species, none of the gaps Darwin mentioned have ever been filled—at least, they haven’t been filled with any sort of hard empirical evidence. If the pond scum-to-people story of macro evolution is true, then there should have been a myriad of transitional forms found in the fossil record. They don’t exist and never have. Therefore, evolutionists resorted to a series of ad hoc rationalizations, like punctuated equilibrium and genetic bottlenecks, to paper over the complete lack of incontrovertible evidence for their hypothesis. They have even resorted to playing semantic games by replacing the term “missing link” with “common ancestor.” There is no water-tight evidence for any of the proposed common ancestors, either.

Genetic bottlenecks destroy information, not increase it. They’re not a magic wand that provides the massive increase in information required for an ape to be transformed into a human being—let alone the goo-to-you-by-way-of-the-zoo story of macro evolution. However, genetic bottlenecking fits wonderfully into the neo –catastrophism of biblical creation.

Evolution (read: macro-evolution) is not some benign scientific law like the law of gravity. Evolution is an atheistic religious dogma that is, at its heart, the scientific justification for dialectical materialism. It is a comprehensive world view with its own mythology of just-so stories masquerading as “science.”

Theodosius Dobzhansky wrote,

“Evolution comprises all the stages of the development of the universe: the cosmic, biological, and human or cultural developments. Attempts to restrict the concept of evolution to biology are gratuitous. Life is the product of the evolution of inorganic nature, and man is a product of the evolution of life.” ( from "Changing Man", Science, Vol. 155, Jan. 27, 1967, p. 409).

A world view like evolution has consequences when you follow it to its logical conclusion and apply that conclusion to how we govern our lives. Under evolution, life has no intrinsic value; it is just the result of a series of accidents. It comes as no surprise, then, that the genocidal horrors of the 20th century’s atheistic dictators, who slaughtered more human beings in a few decades than all the genocides combined over the last 2000 years, would happen in the shadow of evolutionary materialism.

This is no coincidence and nobody is “twisting” Darwin to fit “their own self-serving agenda.”

The children mentioned in the Times story and in the Columbine shootings are the products of a generation of evolutionary brainwashing. They understand all too well the lessons learned from Darwinism and then the adults wonder why they behave the way they do. As I have said before on this blog, evolution is the pagan creation myth for modern man. Darwin did not come up with anything new as this article from Wall Builders so aptly points out: The Founding Fathers on Creation and Evolution. Modern society is simply reaping what it has sown.

6:20 AM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger Escovado said...

Bah! The links I posted got filterd by the server. Let me try again:


The Founding Fathers on Creation and Evolution

6:25 AM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger Siarlys Jenkins said...

Escovado, that is a long-winded way of showing off your own ignorance and prejudice. I don't say that lightly, because I've dealt with many narcissistic loud-mouthed atheists, and by comparison, believe me, conversing with you is a real pleasure. It is almost impossible on a web site to "prove" questions of fact. Some manage a good number of footnotes, but then, there are a million points of view in print, and as Joseph Stalin said, paper will put up with whatever you print on it. If you really want to convince me or anyone not already of your persuasion that there is "no evidence" for life evolving from single cells to human bodies, I suggest you read one complete book of evolutionary biology, not a highly technical one, but something informed which a lay person like me can understand. The one I rely on is Richard Fortey,s LIFE: The History of the First Forty Billion Years of Life on Earth. I don't ask you to accept it as true, but read it, and then refute, point for point, everything in there, all the evidence relied upon, show me it isn't true.

I find the "creationist" musings to be a lot of wishful thinking. "Oh, I have to deny this, because its against the Bible, and then I'd have to give up on God." Bob the Atheist believes that too. There is plenty that is not fully known about the mechanisms and transitions of evolution, but what IS well established is the period of geological time, and the succession of different life forms. There are, in fact, more missing transitional forms being turned up all the time. The process is quite clear. The details are not. I would be surprised if there is not some subtle divine intervention, but I don't ever expect to prove it by finding God's thumbprint fossilized in the rock somewhere.

It is all so unnecessary. I find evolution reaffirmed every time I look at Genesis. What I wonder is, how did Moses know that 3000 years before Darwin figured out a little bit of it? Someone who saw the whole thing happen must have revealed it to him. Now that is a foundation for faith.

11:45 AM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger Fred Butler said...


Evidence has to be interpreted. It isn't self defined and brute. And just like Bob the atheist, you assume the "consensus" of scientists are interpreting the evidence correctly when such is sorely not the case, hence the reason they are so bitter against anyone who demonstrates they are wrong.

I can read biology book after biology book, both technical and lay level, and all of them have a specific interpretation of the evidence that will always attempt to prove life on earth from pure naturalistic, materialistic means sans a creator. This isn't proof, but merely the articulation of a specific philosophy built around particular presuppositions.

As for your claim Moses talks about biological evolution, the biblical record shows no such thing. In order for you to substantiate such a claim, I need you to provide specific exegesis of the relevant texts. Saying that on the 5th day animals came forth in the water is proof shows a severe misunderstanding of what the text is stating. If you want to claim as such, I need you to provide me with some data that supports your conclusion. This is what I have yet to see.

12:39 PM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger Escovado said...

@Siarlys Jenkins:
Unfortunately, you responded in the manner of a typical evolutionist who has not thought the issues through. In your mind, I must be ignorant and stupid, because if I had only managed to read one complete book of evolutionary biology I would be singing Darwin’s praises. Repeating over and over again as you have that you believe evolution to be true does not in fact make it so. This is a classic case of psychological projection, but I’m not going to attempt to unravel it all here. However, I will attempt to make you deal with some specifics about Darwinism rather than the usual glittering generalities.

Regarding transitional forms, you said, “There are, in fact, more missing transitional forms being turned up all the time.” I request that you please name just one for me—please be very careful before you answer this.

I see that you have read the “Bob” threads, so I will ask you to answer the question our friend Bob refused to answer: The origin of information is the Achilles heel of evolution. In DNA we have information storage and retrieval system that is base-4 digital, self-replicating, error-correcting and most likely multiplexed. Please explain to this poor, ignorant soul the origin of genetic information from a naturalistic perspective. On, in other words, show me some convincing evidence for how coded information can arise by chance.

This article may help you: The Problem of Information for the Theory of Evolution

3:35 PM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger Siarlys Jenkins said...

Escovado, I don't in the least expect you to be singing Darwin's praises. I do want to know exactly what your point by point response would be if you DID read an entire book, cover to cover, particularly the one I recommended, but there are others.

Like I said, it is almost impossible to "prove" a factual question on a site like this. You can say, "there is no evidence," I can say "there is a mountain of evidence," but it takes whole books to even begin to sustain either side of that argument.

Transitional forms: without putting my hands on the last book I read, there was an expedition in Argentina digging up fossilized dinosaur eggs, which had a good discussion of cladistics, and how it established connections between theropod dinosaurs and birds.

You will find another example discussed at
Yeah, that's my site. If you look around, you'll also find comments on why it was common sense that New York's highest court did NOT find a constitutional right to gay marriage the same year.

Now, what makes you think I have a "naturalistic perspective"? What exactly is that anyway? If you mean, explain to you how it just happened, randomly, without divine intervention, I believe that is highly unlikely. Ask Fred about our mutual friend Boris, who took a greater dislike to me than Fred, because I kept insisting that God had something to do with evolution. God is, in fact, the author of the entire process.

Fred raises a more serious point. He says I have a severe misunderstanding of Genesis. I must note that, in the spirit of John Wycliffe, there is no earthly authority who can dictate to me what the Bible says or means. I have to read it for myself, guided by the Holy Spirit. In congregational churches, those who recognize Jesus as Lord, voting is not a democratic process for deciding what is true, but a process for bringing together what the Holy Spirit has imparted to each individual member's Bible study.

But I will try to explain again what the Holy Spirit led me to understand. My copy of the King James translation says "God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after his kind, and God saw that it was good. That would be Genesis 1:20-21.

Now, what has been revealed to me from this passage is that God commanded, not "let there be fish," but let life come forth in the seas, and, that God continued to "make every living creature which the waters brought forth." That is a continuing process of creation and further creation. God was at work, but in a more subtle manner than most humans were prepared to recognize. Our ancestors understood the Bible in a limited way, based on their own limited understanding. God knew it all along, of course.

I think the best science pertaining to this is in Simon Conway Morris's work on convergence, the fact that somehow the same basic structure of the eye has evolved eight different times in animals whose last common ancestor was sightless. If it was all random, why didn't each eye come out in a totally different way, or why did so many species have eyes at all?

Now again, you don't have to agree with me, but, that's not because you have The Truth From God and I'm out partying with Bob. That's because we both read the same Scripture, and somehow came to a different understanding. Which of us is right? God knows, and he isn't telling. But the natural evidence doesn't lie. As Galileo wrote, God's creation cannot be contrary to his Word.

8:11 PM, November 16, 2009  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

Fred raises a more serious point. He says I have a severe misunderstanding of Genesis. I must note that, in the spirit of John Wycliffe, there is no earthly authority who can dictate to me what the Bible says or means. I have to read it for myself, guided by the Holy Spirit. In congregational churches, those who recognize Jesus as Lord, voting is not a democratic process for deciding what is true, but a process for bringing together what the Holy Spirit has imparted to each individual member's Bible study.

Herein lies the foundation of our radical disagreement. You claim that your interpretation of Genesis is correct because "the Holy Spirit has guided you." But I don't believe you see the dangerous problems lurking with your claim.

This is interpretation by personal experience. In other words, "It must be true because God told me." This is a neo-orthodox approach to reading the Bible at best, a postmodern, relativistic approach at worse. You're really no different than say Harold Camping, or Benny Hinn, or any other number of cranks who say the Bible means this because God told me. This is how cults are formed.

Genesis has to mean something, and God has provided men with the ability to use exegesis to understand a passage. Granted, the Holy Spirit aids our understanding of the text, but God is not going to tell us something that is contrary to the meaning of the original text. What you see here in Genesis about "evolution in the sea" is not what Moses is telling us about creation. The exegetical data does not and cannot provide that conclusion.

Here's a nice little article on Genesis from a like-mind fellow.

6:49 AM, November 17, 2009  
Blogger Escovado said...

Siarlys Jenkins,

Tiktaalik (a.k.a. “fishapod”) fails as any sort of a transitional form. It has no true finger or toe bones--or anything else to suggest that it “evolved” from a walking land animal. It’s 100% boney fish. Tiktaalik is yet another example of scientists interpreting evidence in the light of their own biases. These same claims were made by evolutionists about the coelacanth decades ago. This is no different.

Tiktaalik roseae—a fishy ‘missing link’

Tiktaalik and the Fishy Story of Walking Fish

Tiktaalik and the Fishy Story of Walking Fish, Part 2

News to Note, October 18, 2008

You spent the next six paragraphs of your post not answering my central question. All the just-so stories about how the Tiktaalik got its legs are fine for the Discovery Channel, but it won’t fly (or swim) with me. The generation of information programmed into the DNA is the nuts-and-bolts of evolution. I gave you the link to the article from True Origins so you can begin doing your homework.

Either answer the question or stop wasting my time: Please explain the origin of information and how evolutionary mechanisms generate new information.

6:59 AM, November 17, 2009  
Blogger Siarlys Jenkins said...

Now we're getting down to substance Fred. Actually, we're not so far apart on the authority. I'm no fan of Benny Hinn. One of the few things I've written that has been picked up and reposted by other sites was "Good Night, Benny Hinn,"
But here are the extremes of any reliance on Scriptural authority:
(1) The Church will tell us what it means, and we better all accept that.
(2) I have to read it for myself, and nobody but God can tell me what it means.
In between, there is nothing but a messy balancing act.

True, God has provided men with the ability to use exegesis to understand a passage. In truth, I don't have blinding revelations in 3-D from God. I may, if I'm lucky, hear a small quiet voice. But, that could just be my own mind making up what it wants to hear. So, what do we do if my exegesis and your exegesis come to different conclusions? They have. I've written a whole book on this.
You don't have to agree with me, nor I with you. What you can't say is that I reject the Bible or God. All that I reject is your exegesis.

Now Escovado is resorting to a dreary tit for tat. I say tomato, he says tomato. (Pronunciation to be inferred). To say that the skeleton under discussion "fails as any sort of transitional form" is your opinion. Everybody has an opinion. And whoever said it "evolved" from a land animal? That's whales that evolved from land animals, a swimming mammal, not a fish. The so-called fishapod shows the bare beginnings of how an odd descendant of fish acquired the bare beginnings of something a little more like limbs. Just a little. God had all the time in the world, and took it, because time is no limitation at all on God.

I drop in on Answers in Genesis now and then to see what they've come up with. It's pathetic, and not even very devout. They have to go to all the trouble to contrive this propaganda, just to sustain their faith? What weak faith they must have in the first place. Anyone who really trusted God could accept any fact and say "Glory to God" instead of fighting it. Basically, AIG strips away 70-90% of the data, then puts together the most absurd misapplication of what is left, in order to twist and squirm and somehow make it all fit their own preconceived notion.

There are lots of errors made in science. I can't figure out why archaeologists are so intent about rejecting the very thoroughly done excavations at Easter Island by Thor Heyerdahl. I don't know why Egyptologists keep saying there is no evidence for the Exodus in the New Kingdom, when it more likely happened at the end of the Middle Kingdom. I'm tired of anyone claiming that science can show evidence of God, or of no God, or test for the efficacy of prayer. But the evidence for a succession of life forms over 3 billion years is both plain and overwhelming, and it is Biblical to boot.

10:37 AM, November 17, 2009  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

So, what do we do if my exegesis and your exegesis come to different conclusions?

Exegesis is just mining the facts of the biblical text. You can't come to different conclusions with exegesis. It's like saying a person can come to different conclusions with the use of the law of non-contradiction.

Its the application the exegesis that is at stake. Where you are radically different from me, as I have already inferred in other posts along this theme of evolution, is the influence you allow upon your interpretation of the exegetical data. You assume, a priori, that the so-called evidence for evolution is plain and overwhelming in and of itself. Where as I have pointed out again and again that any and all evidence has to be interpreted. Those interpretations are biased according to a specific presupposition brought to bear upon it by the individual interpreter.

Interpreting the Genesis record according to the construct of Darwinian evolution is an example of bringing an outside presupposition upon the interpretation of the exegetical data. Thus, the disagreement comes down to governing authorities. Do we allow the exegesis of Genesis stand alone in its revelation of what it tells us about God creating, or do we allow it to be subservient to an additional outside authority.

Though you claim to have a high view of scripture, in reality, your position of the text is what has classically led people to embrace liberalism and then ultimately unbelief.

10:53 AM, November 17, 2009  
Blogger Escovado said...

Siarlys, you, like Bob, steadfastly refuse to deal with the crux of macro-evolution: In order to make evolution even remotely possible (read: “scientific”) you have to demonstrate how the digitally-encoded information in the DNA appeared out of nowhere and then how the information content increased all by itself--never mind how the genetic code was even defined in the first place! As long as one confines himself to its glittering generalities, evolution seems like such a wondrous story. But when you get down to a detailed examination of what needs to happen at the molecular level to make it even remotely possible, macro- evolution utterly fails to explain the complexity seen in nature.

Regarding Tiktaalik…

“And whoever said it "evolved" from a land animal?”

I messed that one up; I was thinking of one of the whale evolution stories that were also discussed in a news article I read on Tiktaalik. My silly mistake; too early in the morning for me to be writing. To continue...

“Now Escovado is resorting to a dreary tit for tat. I say tomato, he says tomato.”

Sorry, Siarlys, it is you who has become dreary.

Your responses bounce all over the place and never focus on the substance of the issues. Instead of presenting a single defense for the alleged transitional form you showcased on your blog, you launch into a nonsensical screed about Answers in Genesis. Tiktaalik possesses fully-formed ordinal characteristics also found in other creatures; the articles I linked to detail this. However, rather than being transitional, it is a mosaic like archaeopteryx or the platypus.

A truly transitional characteristic would be, for example, the discovery of a structure half way between a scale and a feather. Yet nothing of that nature has ever been found. Like everything in evolutionary “science,” all evolutionists have are a series of just-so stories. And if enough people like the story, then the story becomes a “fact.” To claim, as you do, that it all comes down to opinion is really just a cop out that assumes there is no way of determining objective truth.

I have much better things to do with my time than to waste it going around in circles with you. I am through with this thread.

12:37 PM, November 17, 2009  
Blogger Siarlys Jenkins said...

"You can't come to different conclusions with exegesis."

This reminds me of one afternoon when I ran into some Jehovah's Witnesses on the street, witnessing. I courteously explained that I had read some of their literature in the past, thought they had a good Biblical analysis of the Trinity, but found much else I could not accept. One of them asked, "But do you read the Bible?" Of course, I replied, but so do the Roman Catholics, three or four varieties of Lutherans, seven varieties of Methodists, three or four varieties of Presbyterians, the Seventh Day Adventists, the Disciples of Christ, God knows how many varieties of Pentecostals, and many brands of latter day Calvinism. Somehow, they all come to somewhat different conclusions, and I haven't even mentioned all the types of Baptist, from hard shell to soft shell, missionary to free will. They all start with the same text, the same "facts" if you will.

If you want to insist that what you have arrived at through exegesis is The One and Only True Meaning, then you must set yourself up as Pope, and denounce all others as heresy. In history, that has been a good way to turn people away from the faith, until a John Wycliffe, a Martin Luther, a John Calvin, a Jacobus Arminius, a John Wesley, comes along to free us, in part, from such spiritual slavery. Can what I've just said lead to considerable liberalism or individualism as well? Of course it can. But then, we ARE all accountable to God for how we use our time on this earth. I'm just not convinced you have everything exactly as God intended.

In particular, yes, I do take into consideration observable facts, and reasonable interpretation of those facts, concerning the material universe. That is because I know past understanding of, say, Genesis, reflects the limitations of previous human understanding. When I was a child, I pictured a perfectly dark earth sitting in a perfectly dark empty universe, waiting for God to say "Let there be light," ringing up the drama on the waiting stage. But, when I grew older, I realized that Genesis says "the earth was without form and void." Also, Genesis never informs us exactly when on what day or how the earth was created. It apparently wasn't important to God to let us know that.

Those who developed a 6-"day" 6000 year view of creation and earth history didn't find it in the Bible. They shaped their exegesis according to what their little minds thought was possible. As our knowledge of the world expands, our sense of the glory of God can expand also -- always exponentially compared to what little we know.

7:50 PM, November 17, 2009  
Blogger Siarlys Jenkins said...

Escovado, there is indeed little point in continuing this discussion. I won't quibble about who is dreary to who. That is in the eye of the beholder, and God will have the last laugh. I mentioned Answers in Genesis because YOU listed three or four links to the site in your last reply to me. I thought I should address the authorities and references you cited.

You continue to set up straw men like, how did the complex coding of DNA appear out of nowhere. If you google my name and Richard Dawkins, you will find that I always write him off as an author of rather dull and poorly imagined science fiction. We don't know one tenth of where it came from, or one fourth of how it works. I simply find that I don't need to deny the little we do know in order to recognize the divine creator of it all. Apparently, you can't sustain your faith without that denial.

7:56 PM, November 17, 2009  

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