How Richard Dawkins’ (ir-)religion hinders scientific progress

See Jonathan Wells on his book, The Myth of Junk DNA – yes, it is a Darwinist myth and he nails it as such.  As I read the article I thought of how bias can get in the way of scientific discoveries.

The conventional wisdom is that religion and science are at odds or are at least “non-overlapping magesteria.”  Philosophical naturalists like to posit that religion impedes scientific progress.  That is a false dilemma, of course, because the notion that God is orderly and that we can think his thoughts after him drove early science and is still logical.

But look what happens when atheistic assumptions get in the way of science:

“The amount of DNA in organisms,” neo-Darwinist Richard Dawkins wrote in 1976, “is more than is strictly necessary for building them: A large fraction of the DNA is never translated into protein. From the point of view of the individual organism this seems paradoxical. If the ‘purpose’ of DNA is to supervise the building of bodies, it is surprising to find a large quantity of DNA which does no such thing. Biologists are racking their brains trying to think what useful task this apparently surplus DNA is doing. But from the point of view of the selfish genes themselves, there is no paradox. The true ‘purpose’ of DNA is to survive, no more and no less. The simplest way to explain the surplus DNA is to suppose that it is a parasite, or at best a harmless but useless passenger, hitching a ride in the survival machines created by the other DNA.” (The Selfish Gene, p. 47)

Dawkins’ worldview caused him and many others to “know” that this must have been “junk” DNA. Who knows how many important scientific advancements were delayed because of bias like this? Christians know that there are natural and supernatural forces in the world, and that the composition of the universe screams out design. Even Dawkins concedes that it appears to be designed.

More from the link:

Collins also wrote that intelligent design is a “God of the gaps” position that is doomed to collapse with further advances in science (p. 193). But Collins has it exactly backwards: He and other promoters of the myth of junk DNA have put their faith in a “Darwin of the gaps” argument that must now retreat in the face of new advances in genome research.

Truly open-minded scientists wouldn’t assume that the “junk” DNA was evolutionary baggage.  They would have considered that perhaps it had another function put there by an intelligent designer.

Scientific progress can be negatively impacted by bad philosophy — just not always the kind people assume.  How many other discoveries are hindered by the false Darwinian worldview?

P.S. This topic always reminds me of a funny bit in an episode of The Simpsons where Lisa finds a phony fossil of what appears to be an angel.  The episode cleverly skewered both sides of the debate – though mostly against Christians. (Sadly, this is one of the last episodes Phil Hartman did before he was killed. He played the attorney Lionel Hutz).  I loved this line from the judge presiding over the trial:

As for science versus religion, I’m issuing a restraining order: Religion must stay 500 yards from science at all times.

If only the (ir-)religious bias of Dawkins et al had a restraining order against it!

Adults vs. children

If the Republicans can’t capitalize on the Wisconsin / Indiana lawmakers fleeing their states and the union schemes to destroy our economy, then they need to fire their marketing department.

We heard a lot about Wisconsin but not as much about Indiana, where the Democratic Fleebaggers were even less effective:

Although far less publicized than the Wisconsin Democrat Temper-Tantrum, Indiana State Dems have staged a walkout that far exceeded the Wisconsin walkout both in terms of time wasted and ultimate futility. Last night, the Indiana Democrats staged an ignominious return in which they were forced to explain why they accomplished absolutely nothing after wasting half a million dollars in taxpayer money.

See, unlike in Wisconsin, when the Dems left town, the Republicans took the opportunity to shelve the right-to-work legislation (the stated reason for the Great Democrat Flight) and get down to passing the rest of their legislative agenda sans Democrats, including the budget (balanced) and redistricting. As the Indianapolis Star put it:

. . .

Well, the Democrats are now back, and they are more unpopular than ever. And they are in the unenviable position of having to explain to the voters why, in these economically troubled times, with Hoosiers everywhere fighting for their jobs, the Indiana taxpayers had to foot the massive bill for their out-of-state jaunt, with absolutely nothing to show for it in return. In this fight, the IN GOP has scored a near-total victory.

via Indiana Democrats: Total Capitulation | RedState.

 

“Either of us could be wrong, so let’s call it a tie”

Twice this week I encountered commenters who ran out of arguments and resorted to claiming that either of us could be wrong.  The implication was that it made the discussion a toss-up and we should just end the debate – with them getting their way, of course.

Here’s one of them, in context of a discussion on Romans 1 and natural functions.

In context with the idol worship we see what comes next. I could be wrong, can you admit that you could be wrong?

My response:

You are wrong and should stop teaching falsely. Whether we could be wrong is irrelevant. I say people shouldn’t beat up gays. Could I be wrong? Maybe, but I don’t think I am. But using your “logic” I could be wrong so I shouldn’t debate the point. That is stupid logic.

Here’s the other example:

So, Neil, the Bible and the [Methodist] Book of Discipline are never wrong?

My response:

The “we might both be wrong, so let’s call it a tie” philosophy is silly. Fred Phelps could use the same approach but I hope that wouldn’t stifle anyone’s criticism of him.

The Bible is never wrong. It is capable of being misunderstood, but never wrong. It is remarkably clear on this topic, and the BoD [Methodist Book of Discipline] is in sync:

100% of the verses addressing homosexual behavior denounce it as sin in the clearest and strongest possible terms. 100% of the verses referring to God’s ideal for marriage involve one man and one woman. 100% of the verses referencing parenting involve moms and dads with unique roles (or at least a set of male and female parents guiding the children). 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to homosexual behavior in a positive or even benign way or even hint at the acceptability of homosexual unions.

Could I be wrong?  In a hyper-technical sense, of course I could be.  Hey, maybe this is all just an illusion and I didn’t really type this.  That isn’t supported by the evidence and we don’t live our lives that way, but there is always some extreme scenario where we could be mistaken.

But that isn’t what the other party is aiming at.  They think they are right, and are using this argument to avoid conceding a point where they know they are out of ammunition.

One of the most insidious ways the pro-gay lobby in the Methodist Church does this is to press for resolutions noting that we don’t have full agreement on the topic.  They make it sound innocent, as if we are just stating the obvious.  But of course they are trying to generate an official document that implies that there just isn’t enough biblical guidance on the topic to make an assessment.  Therefore, we should relax our standards.

The lesson here: Don’t let them get away with it.  Just point out how they obviously think they are right and have the burden of proof to back up their claims.

Care Net Walk for Life – April 16

Savings lives today . . . and for eternity

Care Net Pregnancy Center of Northwest Houston’s 7th Annual Walk for Life is a two-mile family-friendly walk in Matzke Park, adjacent to registration at the Metropolitan Baptist Church.

Click here to register or sponsor a walker – such as me!  The website makes it really easy to do either.  If you want to walk, all you have to do is fill out the form and then people can sponsor you directly from a link.  You don’t have to collect any money.  You can click buttons to post it on Facebook, Twitter and add it to your calendar.

It is a great way to get a little exercise, have some fun with a terrific group of people and help a ministry that provides many free resources to women and families in need:

  • Pregnancy Testing 
  • Peer Counseling: Women & Men
  • Ultrasound Imaging
  • Adoption Referrals
  • Post Abortion Counseling
  • Abstinence Education
  • Classes related to:
    • Pregnancy & Baby Care
    • Life Skills
    • Biblical Principles

These free services open the door to establish relationships and to share the gospel as we work with the Lord to meet spiritual & physical needs. As a result, we have seen many abortion-minded and abortion-vulnerable women decide to carry their child to term after receiving counseling and seeing an ultrasound image of their baby.

Date and Time

Saturday, April 16, 2011
Registration 8:15 – 8:45am
Walk 9:00 – 10:30am

Location

Metropolitan Baptist Church
13001 Jones Road
Houston, TX 77070

 

Walk for Life

A conversation with a false teacher, the movie

I used the Xtranormal site to make this movie.  You can make one yourself for free, then it costs you to make more (the cost is low).

It isn’t as polished as I’d like, but editing was a little cumbersome and it was one of those things that I was either going to publish this way or never got around to it.

Hope you enjoy it!  Feedback is welcome, and as always, feel free to share it on your blog or Facebook page.  If you like this sort of thing I urge you to try one yourself.  They can be clever ways to convey key truths.

—–

There are many false teachers in the Christian church. They teach the opposite of what the Bible does. I respect their religious freedom to say what they wish, but it would be more honest if they called themselves something other than Christians. Their views mock the cross and the blood of the martyrs. The lines I used here are from actual dialog and teachings of these people.

Here it is on the Xtranormal site.

Roundup

Methodist pastor fired for teaching false doctrines. Yea!

“The people at my church are good, decent people,” he told FoxNews.com. “They’re simply feeling a little threatened by a pastor who is asking questions that they don’t want to ask right now. I hope some seeds are planted and that God will bring some good about it.”

Here’s another angle, sport: These good, decent people aren’t stupid.  They aren’t threatened by your lack of belief in God, they just want a pastor who actually worships the one true God who inspired the original texts of the Bible.  God already did bring some good about it: He got rid of a false teacher.

I pray that many other churches will follow suit.  It would be better to be led by some authentic lay people than a false teacher with a seminary degree.

“We do these somersaults to justify the monster god we believe in,” he said. “But confronting my own sinfulness, that’s when things started to topple for me. Am I really going to be saved just because I believe something, when all these good people in the world aren’t?”

Gee, the “pastor” called the God of a the Bible a monster.  How could someone like that possibly offend the authentic Christians paying his salary?  And his assessment that all these other people are “good” (on God’s terms) is further proof of his bad theology.

Obama’s favorite CEO gets GE out from paying any U.S taxes – hope and change, baby!

A review of company filings and Congressional records shows that one of the most striking advantages of General Electric is its ability to lobby for, win and take advantage of tax breaks.

Over the last decade, G.E. has spent tens of millions of dollars to push for changes in tax law, from more generous depreciation schedules on jet engines to “green energy” credits for its wind turbines. But the most lucrative of these measures allows G.E. to operate a vast leasing and lending business abroad with profits that face little foreign taxes and no American taxes as long as the money remains overseas.

Apple Pulls Ex-’Gay’ iPhone App after Lobbying Campaign by Hateful Homosexual Activists – Yet they leave the Grindr gay hook-up app.  Considering that the rate of syphilis and HIV for gays is more than forty times the rest of us, it seems like the truly hateful thing would be giving people tools to indulge their fix of anonymous sex.

They are “grinding,” the latest verb in the gay lexicon, which refers to the new gay dating app for the iPhone called Grindr. A revolutionary way to meet gay men, Grindr has eliminated the need for “gay-dar”; it uses GPS technology to download hundreds of pictures of available men within walking distance.

Alex and Sean can click on a man’s picture to start a text conversation, send pictures and, if they so desire, make arrangements for a rendezvous. There’s a number on each man’s photo, indicating how many feet away they are at that instant.

Keep Grindr in mind when the mainstream media is telling you how most gays just want to have “traditional” marriages.

Apples’s rejection of Christian apps like the Manhattan Declaration and the Ex-Gay app is just another example of how thin-skinned the LGBTQ lobby is.  Deep down they know they are wrong, so they have to fight to silence every last criticism of their worldview.  But it still won’t work.

Another thorough review of Rob Bell’s false teachings on Hell in his book “Love Wins” – An Open Letter to Rob Bell – after noting the hypocrisy of Bell’s defenders, he explains how Bell cheats in saying the New Testament “only” mentions Hell 14 times.  Bell was being a literalist in only including passages where the word is mentioned while ignoring it when it was clearly described.

He wants a Weiner waiver (to Obamacare) – Could someone be more hypocritical than to take responsibility for the Obamacare debacle and then ask for a waiver to it?

An open letter to Brian McLaren (a Rob Bell-type false teacher)

Arizona Republicans ban race-selection and sex-selection abortions – Yea!  Elections count, people.  Abortions kill innocent but “unwanted” human beings and are a moral evil.  We need a three-pronged approach on the pro-life issue:

  1. Support Pregnancy Resource Centers – volunteer at, pray for or donate to them to help save lives today and for eternity.  They help women and families in their time of need, all for free.
  2. Educate people in the art of pro-life reasoning.
  3. Elect pro-life politicians who will reduce abortions, protect women and children (i.e., parental notification laws) and ultimately make them illegal.

Great – and accurate – send up of Liberal hypocrisy on Libya.  Hat tip: Ironic Surrealism

Handy Iraq vs. Libya chart

Courtesy of Casting Pearls Before Swine. Read each line carefully.

If that doesn’t tell you enough, consider this video of Joe Biden, where he says that Presidents who do such things without Congressional approval should be impeached.  Hey, I agree with Joe for once!