Who Wrote the DNA Code?

Recently I watched an episode of “Bang Goes the Theory,” a British popular science program. One segment featured Richard Dawkins, a famous militant evolutionist and atheist, explaining the evolution of the eye to one of the presenters. He described the beginnings and evolution of vision using light-sensitive spots on ancient worms as the beginning. The presenter lapped up the story he gave her like a happy puppy. The problem is that she was being conned by a slick fraud.

The fraudulence of evolution is not my idea. Malcolm Muggeridge, a renowned British journalist and broadcaster, after a speech in 1980, answered a question concerning evolution as follows. “I myself am convinced that the theory of evolution, especially the extent to which it has been applied, will be one of the great jokes in the history books in the future. Posterity will marvel that so very flimsy and dubious an hypothesis could be accepted with the incredible credulity that it has.”

Dawkins spoke as if genetic biology does not exist. Thus he avoided current questions regarding the development of sight such as How are photo-reactive chemicals biologically produced? What places the chemicals at a given spot just under the worm’s skin? How is the nerve function made, then connected to the light-reactive spot, and thus able to sense the change in the chemical molecules? How is the change in light level sent to a muscle function that acts to move the worm in a way that is beneficial to it so it can be naturally selected to continue its existence. Dawkins’ mythology is that the worms decided that it would be good to be able to sense where light was and so they decided to evolve a way to do it.

A French philosopher, Etienne Gilson, wrote in 1975 that evolution was “bad science and worse philosophy.” If intelligent people like Muggeridge and Gilson saw more than 30 years ago that evolution was defective, why has it claimed a larger and larger role in popular culture? While it is true that evolution appears to push God out of biology, there are probably not enough atheists to account for its wide acceptance, so other reasons must be sought.

There seem to be two aspects, that are diametrically opposed features of evolution, that have given it its strength. One feature is that it eliminates human responsibility. If we are products of primeval slime arriving at what we are by way of primates, how can we be held accountable for doing anything other than eating, drinking, sleeping, copulating, along with some war, child care, and recreational pleasures thrown in. There is no reason for any larger loyalty than to our own selves. Certainly there is no need for responsibility to a community, a nation, or to the rest of the people in the world. As for passing along our genes or our culture, all that can be forgotten.

I think the other appeal of evolution is that it makes what Satan told Eve in the Garden of Eden appear true. Satan said, “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:5, NIV). By eliminating God from human culture, evolution allows people to decide for themselves what is good and what is evil. However, Satan is a liar, and Eve quickly became one when she told herself she had disobeyed God because the fruit was good for food, pleasing to the eye, and provided wisdom (Genesis 3:6, NIV). There was other good fruit in the Garden but what she wanted from eating that particular fruit was to decide for herself what was right and wrong. Evolution supports the tendency we inherited from Eve of thinking we can make our own rules for our lives. However, thinking that we can invent right rules is as wrong now as it was when Eve first thought it.

The appeal of evolution has in our culture allowed evolutionists to claim all of biology as their own. However, evolution and genetic science are basically incompatible. The theory of evolution came into existence about 100 years before the DNA code was deciphered, and it would have taken something like divine inspiration for evolutionists to have correctly understood how life works. Evolution’s story in fact has been altered several times since Darwin, and there are now even different sects under the evolutionary umbrella. It is thus not surprising that evolutionists are joining themselves to molecular biology and hoping nobody is going to notice that a paradigm shift has taken place.

I think Christians need to use this paradigm shift very carefully. There is an obvious temptation to answer the question, “Who wrote the DNA code?” by stating it was God. However, creationist explanations do not work for secular scientists nor, remembering the attractiveness of evolution to our culture, are they likely to inspire immediate acceptance among the media or the general population. What we can do as Christians, though, is to keep the lies and mythology of evolution out of molecular biology so we can ensure genetic science is done with integrity.

Part of the reformation of American Christianity must include our arriving at a common and true understanding of what science tells us about the physical world. Then when nonbelievers come to us, we can show them what physical reality is like and how it makes sense to those who believe in God to accept that it is all created by God.

People of a Higher Reality

In a previous post I wrote that Christians are a people of a higher reality. I think I need to explain what I meant.

We can start with our physical reality. This we share with everyone. The evolutionists tell us we are physically descended from primates. I prefer to think we are descended from our ancestors and ascended from primates. It seems to clarify our actual situation. In any case, we are told by atheists, materialists, humanists and secularists that our existence and lives can be entirely explained physically. Fortunately, Christians, and most of the rest of the human species, are not deceived by this claim.

Most people think there is a spirit, a soul or something else immaterial in us. We have, it is thought, a ghost in our electro/chemical/mechanical machines. Further, this ghost is thought to be associated with our minds. The federal government has begun a Brain Mapping Project to learn all that can be known about the function of our minds. I suspect that for some people it is also an attempt to exorcize the ghost and thus justify the materialist explanation.

Jesus told Nicodemus that he must be born again, not physically but spiritually, if he was to understand the things of God. It is this, let me call it, spiritual enhancement that allows Christians to be in more complete communication and relationship with God the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. It is not that the Godhead does not speak to non-Christians but that their ability to hear and understand is very limited. This is why unbelievers find it hard to get much out of reading the Bible while people like John Calvin, Thomas Aquinas, Matthew Henry and many others get so much out of it they can write multivolume commentaries.

Malcolm Muggeridge wrote in The End of Christendom, “I am certain that in eternity when we understand, and no longer see through a glass darkly but face to face, we shall find that all our efforts to convey the reality of our existence are just so much children’s scribble in the light of what it really is.” Muggeridge perfectly expressed my problem in conveying to you the higher reality in which we Christians live. Nonetheless I think I must make a stab at it.

We are told in the book of Revelation of millions and millions of Christians surrounding the throne of God and singing praises to him. These are the people the Son has made for the Father and presented to him as a love gift. We who are still on earth are brought by Christ and the Holy Spirit into this saintly multitude and so become members of the family of God. A part of our higher reality is that we have relatives all over the world and throughout the past. These are our spiritual brothers and sisters to whom we are linked by our relationship to Christ.

Another higher reality for Christians is being able to know the truth of things. Truth, which contemporary philosophy denies even exists, allows us to embrace (symbolically) the lovely woman Wisdom. It is evident those who have help in acquiring wisdom have a better chance of understanding the world we live in. Although, I must admit, Christians have not done as well as we should have in this regard.

Since we have access to truth, we are free to know the untruths in human ideologies. Whatever the social or political pressures to conform to the “spirit of the age,” we are internally emancipated and thus cannot be enslaved by the culture around us. We are not citizens of the city of man but those people who live in the city of God. In this we too are people of a higher reality.

Charles Spurgeon wrote concerning the work of the Holy Spirit in his life, “I trust Him to curb my temper, to subdue my will, to enlighten my understanding, to check my passions, to comfort my despondency, to help my weaknesses, and to illuminate my darkness.” Each Christian has his or her own list of the help needed from the Holy Spirit and each of us receive help as we are made able to incorporate it into our individual lives.

If you want to send a humanist into orbit, tell him or her that Christians are better people than non-Christians. The truth is we cannot legitimately make that claim, but we can say with certainty that each of us is a better person than we would have been without the help of the Holy Spirit. That is, other than our personal relationship with the Trinity, perhaps the best aspect of our higher reality. We are better than we could possibly be if we only had our own efforts to aid us.

If there is a reformation of American Christianity, it will be, in part, because many Christians enter and live in this higher reality. This extra-life is one of God’s many gifts that we receive as a result of his grace and love.

Partisanship and Unity

I think I should begin this post by apologizing to my followers and others for my previous post “Selling Citizenship” (which I removed). Flogging both American political parties is not the same as being nonpartisan so I need improvement in my own thinking. There are, though, two things I might raise in my own defense; I was attempting to write something that would be humorous and interesting being inspired by Word Press’ “Snark Bombs, Away!” Also, it seems that partisanship may be innate in human nature. There are some who think it is in our genes. However, note I wrote “innate” not “determined.” We have a choice in the matter and that is what I am going to consider as part of my thinking concerning the reformation of American Christianity.

Partisanship entered Christianity very early in its history. The story is told in Acts 15:1–35. Although the apostles and elders in Jerusalem agreed with Paul and Barnabas that circumcision and the Mosaic law were not required for salvation, the circumcision party remained. They were still active when Paul wrote the letter to the Galatians about the middle of the first century.

Another instance of partisanship shows up in the church of Corinth. Paul (1 Corinthians 3:1–4) takes the people there to task because they were arguing over his teachings and those of Apollos, apparently quite a gifted preacher. As Christianity continued to expand over space and time, there were endless divisions and quite bitter partisanship lasting until the present and presumably continuing. How did that happen?

As in my own case, partisanship, even in the service of nonpartisanship, is a case of losing objectivity and allowing our ego to grow too large to see the other person’s position. This is particularly the case when we think we are on the right side of a “moral” issue. Thus reformation is a cause that could easily lead us into partisanship. However if reformation is to be more than simply the creation of another “church,” it must be as inclusive as possible. People from all different Christian understandings should be welcome to join us in looking up to Christ.

The opposite of partisanship is unity. Just as there is danger for reformation in partisanship, there are also hazards in unity. The cost of unity in a reformation can be the loss of core values. Some churches maintain their institutional unity while losing the respect of the society they are meant to serve.

So where should we who seek a reformation of American Christianity be on the spectrum of partisanship versus unity. It seems we could start by removing from the partisanship those issues that result from our personal preferences. For example, there have probably been more contemporary churches divided over the worship music than over any understanding of the person of Christ. On the unity end of the spectrum, we need to remember that the coming together we seek is spiritual not institutional nor in the manner in which we worship.

A revival of the idea that Christianity is the kingdom of God, a spiritual realm containing all believers, can allow us to see where we should go in our efforts to reform American Christianity. It will free us not only from the attractions of the world, the flesh and the devil but from the temptation to make churches the be all and end all of Christian experience. We are people of a higher reality.