Wednesday, April 11, 2012

An addendum to yesterday

Yesterday I did not get very far.

This is frustrating to me, because I want to get on with the things I want to write about, not dabble in science which is not my field, nor do I have any desire for it to become my field.

Just because I believe that God is the creator of all things, that doesn't mean I have to be a scientist. As I said yesterday, the origins of life are outside the scope of what can be studied scientifically, anyway.

Yesterday I tried to explain that this blog is not a scientific forum.

Today I will actually deal with what the anonymous astrophysicist said about my views on evolution, and then I will put this science stuff to rest.

I hope. I sincerely hope.

The anonymous astrophysicist said, "The fact that things crystallize is against the second law of thermodynamics. Molecules in solution come together in an ordered fashion. this[sic] proves that disorder can lead to order."

Really? Now, I am a simple housewife. My experience with crystallization is mainly when my honey crystallizes. Or my maple syrup. Or the cough syrup. They crystallize, and they become unusable, and in the end I have to throw them away. This fits right in with the concept of entropy, as far as I am concerned.

Scientifically speaking, however, I understand that crystallization happens when particles settle into a pattern based on their (the particles') affinities. The particles do not say to one another, "Hey! Let's work together and organize into a structure of order and beauty!" They merely fall into a pattern because that is where their electrons repose most comfortably. In essence, they follow the path of least resistance. In my mind, the path of least resistance is very closely aligned with entropy. If there is beauty in the result, I'd say that's the fingerprints of God; God showing His creative genius in design.

The anonymous astrophysicist also said, "The way the sun works is also against the second law of thermodynamics. Hydrogen atoms fuse together to form helium atoms. The sun will do so for another 4.5 billion years before there is not enough hydrogen around, and then the sun will start to burn helium (making things even less random). Don't tell god, but the things he designed are breaking the second law of thermodynamics. Maybe he already knows this?"

Obviously, God knows everything. Just setting that forth before I go on.

Just because God created the sun with a design that gives it the potential to last a very, very long time, that doesn't disprove the Second Law of Thermodynamics. As far as I know, the sun is a star, like any other star, and it has a life-cycle. It had a beginning and it will someday have an end. Just because right now it may be in a phase of (I don't know what to call it, expansion?) rather than a phase of decline, that doesn't mean it isn't ultimately headed for star death. And that is still entropy.

Likewise, babies (all kinds of babies... human babies, animal babies, even plant babies) grow before they die and decompose. I am surprised that you didn't mention this as one of your arguments. The Life Force that keeps new life rising up... spring after a hard winter, new growth after a forest fire, new babies born as older people pass away. This is contrary to my idea of entropy. I believe that it is the grace of God poured out on earth, a sign of the eternal life He offers us in contrast to the death and destruction that we face without Him. He is not contradicting Himself. He is presenting paradoxes that will lead the searcher to find Him.

When God created, each day after He finished His task for the day, He looked at what He had made and said that it was good. Everything was perfect and beautiful.

We don't know how long Adam and Eve may have lived in the paradise of Eden before the serpent appeared and messed everything up. When you read the Bible, verse follows verse, and on first impression it seems as though they were only there for three or four days. But the Bible never says how long they lived in sinless perfection. It could have been centuries. I think they lived in a world without entropy. A world with no death, no decay, no destruction. And when God said, "When you eat of the fruit, you will surely die," what that meant was: on that day, entropy will enter the world system. And it did. However, I believe that God, in His grace and mercy, left signs of His Life Force amidst the entropy, signs that would reflect His beauty, His order, His love. Signs that would draw the seekers to find Him. These signs are often what an atheist sees as contradictions, but I see as paradoxes, mysteries that can lead us to Christ.

Adam and Eve did not fall down dead on the day they disobeyed, but death entered the world, the Universe... and entropy began. What had been eternal became mortal. All of creation was suddenly caught in a cycle that leads ultimately, inevitably, to death and decay. But in all of it, God did not leave us without hope.

Romans 8:20-21 says, "For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God." (ESV) Creation has been in bondage to decay ever since Adam and Eve sinned. But (also in Romans 8), Paul writes that the creation waits in eager expectation for Jesus to return and make things new, that it has been groaning as with the pains of childbirth throughout these years of waiting.

In Revelation, the Lord's promise is that He will make all things new. (Revelation 21:5) He will create a new heaven and a new earth. A new creation. One without tears, death, decay or entropy.

About my statistical analysis of evolution (I say that tongue-in-cheek; I despise statistical math), the anonymous astrophysicist said this: "Your watch argument is also flawed. The planet/god/mother nature didn't make life this way at all. You bring two things together, then you bring three, and then you bring four .... Each time you make a small addition that takes billions of years. It's called evolution."

So... who brings two things together, and then three and then four? Because as far as I am aware, in a random nebula of particles, nobody is counting out the parts, picking the one he wants and then holding on to it until the next good one comes along.

Each time who makes a small addition? This doesn't sound like a very efficient building process for a sentient God to follow, but I think someone would have to be sentient to be picking and holding and waiting and selecting.

My own son tried to explain to me that evolutionists see it this way. He used some sort of analogy about monkeys drawing cards one at a time. I could sort of see what he was getting at, although I couldn't figure out why you would have faith that the monkeys would hold onto the good cards and not drop them as they waited (and waited and waited and waited) for a desirable sequence to form, so it seemed like quite a stretch to me. As you say, "It's called evolution."

I maintain that whether you have all the particles there at once and expect them to figure out a productive arrangement, or whether somehow you insert some anonymous unconscious (unrecognized) force that takes them one at a time and then adds to them one at a time, the odds are formidably opposed to anything productive ever rising out of the process.

Finally, the anonymous astrophysicist said, "I would love to see your ridiculous argument against carbon dating, or any other atomic dating for that matter."

I'm just saying that carbon dating is based on accepting evolution as a fact, not a theory. And evolution is necessarily a theory because it can never be scientifically proven through observation and experimentation. It can only be pieced together through what we do have in front of us to study, which will never be enough to prove it categorically. Everything I've ever read about carbon dating sounds very circular to me. It all comes back to rest on evolution, and I am not convinced by evolution. Then they use it to "prove" evolution, which is what it rests on in the first place.

This is very frustrating to me, and the way I feel about it makes me think of how someone who does not believe in God would feel if someone tried to use Bible verses to prove to him that there is a god.

In my perspective, there is a lot of internal and external evidence that the Bible is true. It is full of genealogies which can often be documented. There are many internal prophecies that were fulfilled many years after the prophesies were recorded. Many of the historical events in the Bible are corroborated in archaeological findings and secondary sources.

In an evolutionist's perspective, I expect that there is also a lot of evidence that the theory of evolution is logical, probable, and sensible. So perhaps it was not entirely fair for me to say that carbon dating may actually be a more striking example of circular reasoning than is proving the existence of God with the Bible. That's the way I see it, but I can see that to a proponent of carbon dating, the opposite would be the case.

It all depends on your perspective.

Just keep in mind: all perspectives are not created equal, and not all perspectives lead to the discovery of truth.

Ugh, I hate these long posts. I hope we can put this to rest. If you want to be an evolutionist, I suppose your mind is made up and I can't probably convince you of anything else.

I believe that God is the Creator of all things.

1 comment:

  1. You have great insights. Thanks for sharing!