December, 2004-A variety of subjects and speakers

 At the recent meeting of the creation society, presentations were made by several speakers.  John Hagerhorst presented a scenario for a type of old age creation, and suggested this might be acceptable in public schools.

Gerry Baker, a retired project engineer from NASA, had managed many experiments sent into space.    He spoke on various subjects, one being his stay in a desert in the southern hemisphere where he had a wonderful view of the Milky Way and the Southern Cross.  A huge cloud of stellar dust blocks a large part of the Milky Way from view, and he speculated this may be referenced in a Bible verse that God veils his glory.  He discussed an article that said the "Big Bang" was uniform and serene in contrast to what one would expect in an explosion.  Jerry then talked about experiences in his spiritual walk.

Jay Auxt briefly reviewed two books.  He was enthusiastic about “Reasonable Faith" by Jay Wile, which gives a good discussion of scientific subjects and a clear case for creation. The other is Random Designer by Richard Colling, a microbiologist who teaches at Olivet Nazarene University.  Essentially this book commends "Theistic Evolution."  Jay wrote the president of the university who replied that he supports teaching this view.

Dr. Per Houmann discussed a newspaper article about a popular book presenting a speculative idea that super intelligent creatures made the universe.  With scarce scientific evidence to support this view, the book has been praised by prominent scientists who would disavow the idea that God created.

Bob Scovner mentioned the current, generally accepted view that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate, which has introduced an unknown force that counters gravity.  Explosions would decelerate over time. This brings up new problems for the "Big Bang Theory."  He presented a segment of a book that tells of the finding of living but dormant bacteria in the intestines of supposed 20 to 40 million year old bees imbedded in amber.  It seems impossible that bacteria would live more than several thousand years.   

 

November, 2004-Art Manning

Science versus Evolution

At the last creation society meeting, Art Manning spoke on "Science versus Evolution. He has been a school teacher, and now lectures about  evolution-creation and leads tours of geological sites and museums.

Scientific evidence in large part contradicts evolutionary postulates.  The biggest obstacle for evolution is the origin of life. Some of the reasons are: 1) the laws of thermodynamics oppose the development of complexity and order. 2) The chance origin of proteins is for practical purposes impossible according to probability calculations. 3) It is generally believed that oxygen was present in the early atmosphere which would have destroyed precursors of life.  4) Aside from living cells, amino acids occur in equal amounts of right and left handed types that are  mirror images of each other, but only left handed amino acids exist in living organisms. Interestingly, DNA contains only right handed sugars.  The probabilities of  complex molecules such as proteins forming by chance from just one of these types is essentially zero.  5)The claimed earliest life forms were two phylum of bacteria,  one of which has only right and the other only left handed molecules in the cell membrane.  It is speculated that these two forms of life arose separately, since the evolution of one into the other is inconceivable. Another huge obstacle for evolution is the development of cells without nuclei into those with nuclei.

Mr. Manning spoke of other observations seemingly incompatible with evolution. One is the migration of birds. An example is the plover that flies nonstop over thousands of miles of water.  Anything less than the bird's many abilities would prohibit migration or cause the destruction of the species. Precise navigation, the preservation of fuel by flying in formation at the most efficient speed, and large feeding before they start are essential.    

He showed the weakness of the idea that embryology reveals the evolutionary history of an organism and other false claims for evolution.  Finally, insects were found imbedded in amber for purportedly 200 million years.  In their intestines bacteria were essentially identical biochemically to present living bacteria. The report on this finding said it revealed how gradual evolution is. You can't get more gradual than that, said Mr. Manning.

 

October 2004-Jay Auxt

God's Design for Music

At the October 12 meeting, Jay Auxt discussed "God's Design for Music and the Incredible Human Ear."  Jay showed from a fundamental physics point of view that "music" and "noise" are mathematically significantly different.  "Music" is not "music" just because we are used to hearing it.  Musical chords have very precise mathematical relationships.  On the other hand, "noise" consists of arbitrary, mathematically unrelated sounds.  The mathematical relationship of chords has always existed. The recent discovery (300 years ago) of this relationship greatly enhanced the design of musical instruments and orchestral music.

Jay then discussed the "incredible ear."  God has designed human hearing to be so sensitive that it seems to defy physics.  Obviously it doesn't.  The sense of hearing involves numerous processors in the brain and numerous additional sound receptors including the skull and rib cage!  No one seems to know how our sense of hearing can tell "front" from "back" or "up" from "down."  Our sense of hearing can outperform any computer chip.  Our sense of hearing can also shut out undesirable or harmful sounds.  Our incredible sense of hearing requires so much multiprocessing of data that it makes our modern day high speed computers look like an ancient abacus.

 

September 2004-Mike Riddle

“Origin of Life”

At the last creation meeting, Michael Riddle from the Institute of Creation Research gave a very informative talk on “The Origin of Life."

The seeming impossibilities of life originating from purely naturalistic forces was discussed. One of the great difficulties is that in living cells all the amino acids are  left handed amino acids (rotate light to the left) and all the sugar in DNA is right handed. In all other natural circumstances these molecules are present in equally in right and left handed forms. The laws of thermodynamics are a great problem for evolutionary theories. Also, the generally admitted presence of oxygen in the early atmosphere would destroy organic molecules exposed to the air, and hydrolysis would destroy organic molecules in water. Life has not been created in laboratories as was claimed years ago.

 

 

July, 2004-Dr. Tom Stackhouse

"RNA"

At the last meeting, Dr. Tom Stackhouse, a cell biologist from Fort Detrick, spoke on RNA.  Some of the highlights of his talk are that DNA in the cell nucleus is arranged in a long linear series of different specific sequences called genes, which with exceptions, represents a particular protein. When the body needs a particular protein, the information in genes is translated to transport RNA which goes out of the nucleus and is decoded by a part of the cell into the specific protein.

The thousands of different proteins are long strings of  amino acids and each protein folds into a specific elaborate three dimensional arrangement, which gives the protein its unique function.

As pointed out in other talks about cells, proteins such as enzymes and transporter molecules are necessary for these elaborate procedures, but protein is only derived through DNA and RNA.  It appears impossible, logically and from observation, that  this wonderful process could originate except from an intelligent creator. 

 

June 2004-Dr. Charmaine Richman

DNA

At the last meeting, Dr. Charmaine Richman presented a very interesting talk about DNA, on which is encrypted almost all of the information for the building and functioning of living organisms. The DNA consists of rather simple molecules arranged in a linear series of thousands of different sequences (genes), which are arranged in a double helix. If the DNA in a cell was stretched out, it would be 100,000 times longer than the cell. There are  mechanisms by which DNA is wound around special proteins and these in turn are wound in another helix and which by further means fit in the cell.  There are proteins that split the double helix or perform other functions vital for DNA to work.  Also there are proteins that repair mutations in genes which function seems essential for life.

Proteins are only derived from the information on DNA (through an elaborate translation mechanism), and DNA cannot function without proteins.  The proteins and DNA had to be there when earthly life first started, and there is no plausible naturalistic explanation how this could have happened.       

 

May, 2004-Art Manning

Dinosaurs     

In our May creation meeting, we had almost 40 people, including many children, at the lecture by Art Manning, field study guide, creation lecturer and former school teacher.  He told of discoveries of dinosaurs over the past 150 years, and showed slides of fossils of many of these often enormous animals. Using puppets, he gave humorous speculations on why dinosaurs disappeared.  He noted the lack of transitional forms of dinosaurs among themselves and with other animals. He said the most important question is not, "Where did the dinosaurs go?" but, "where did they come from?"    

Art spoke about alleged historical sightings, and showed pictures of possible dinosaurs living in modern days.   There are accounts of dinosaur like animals in the Bible and other historical sources.  A woman from Kenya in our audience told of her experience as a girl with an unusual creature, possibly a dinosaur, which is well known in her native area. 

 

April, 2004-Jay Auxt

Radiometric Dating

At the meeting on April 13, Jay Auxt presented Part 2 of a series on "The Age of the Earth." Radiometric rock dating gives the "appearance" of being millions and billions of years old.

The presentation included:

a) The theory behind radiometric dating and why it should be reliable,

b) Problems associated with the methods proving that they are NOT reliable, and

c) A young earth solution from a creation perspective.

 

The "Young Earth Solution" included:

a) Carbon 14 data indicating that trilobites, dinosaurs, and humans all walked on the earth a few thousand years ago (not millions or billions.)

b) Data showing that a minor 10% change in the "well depth" of an atom's nucleus can cause a change in the half life by a factor of 100,000!

c) Data from the Oklo natural reactor (a mine in Africa) that proves that something about the nucleus is significantly different from what it was in the past.

 

March, 2004-Jay Auxt

Starlight and the Age of the Universe

In our last meeting, Jay presented Part 1 of a two part series on the age of the earth.  Part 1 dealt with starlight.  Distant stars give the "appearance" of being millions and billions of years old.  However, Jay illustrated how "time" itself is not constant, and how general relativity can explain how 6000 year old stars could "appear" to be millions and billions of years old.  For a more in depth discussion on this subject, Jay recommends Dr. R Humphrey's book, Starlight and Time.

 

January 2004-Dr. Per Houmann

Mountain Gorillas

In our last meeting, Dr. Per Houmann talked about a trip he made to Africa where he worked at a dental clinic in Rawanda. He related his interest and some experiences in nature since he was a boy.  Videos he made showed mountain gorillas in their natural environment and unique to that part of the world as well as other interesting creatures.  He stated his belief that these wonders show the reality of God “by the things that are made," as mentioned in Romans 1:20.   We had a good interchange of ideas from the audience.