Monday, April 19, 2004

Hey, my computer works!

Several brothers in Christ, in their comments to the recent science posts, mentioned or linked the preeminent creation-science website.

It is hard for me to be gracious to the creation scientists, it really is. I'll do my best. (They also have trouble with grace, the word "heretic" is not ever far from their lips when discussing old-earthers.)

The creation scientists, many with impressive academic credentials, argue that the scientific evidence, including the fossil record, when properly interpreted—supports a young (~10,000 year old) earth.

They limit their support of the scientific intelligent design movement (IDM) to the biological front. They love to use Behe's arguments for irreducible complexity, but turn around and trash him because he believes in an old earth.

Their insistence on six day literalism as a test of orthodoxy is annoying, not because they hold it, but because they do not offer any explanation as to why creedal 144 hour creation was not popularized until the advent of Darwinism. Widespread insistence on literal six twenty-four hour days creation as cardinal truth is about the same age as dispensationalism. And while the two are often linked, there is also (and most distressingly) a critical mass in the PCA that demands acceptance of a young earth.

I would like to ask Ken Ham and his colleagues a few questions:
  1. How is it that the computer you use to write your articles works? How is it that the copper wire and fiber optic links that transmit the data to your website work? How is that the satellite links used by some of your readers to download the articles work? After all, these technologies all are, in large part, made possible by the same quantum mechanics that, according to you, not only fails but fails conspiratorially (different isotopes giving the same wrong answers) when it comes to carbon, uranium, and thorium dating. It surprises me that you would ever trust (even to the point of trusting your life if you ever had an X-ray or MRI) any device based on quantum mechanics (which today is essentially anything that contains electronics.)

  2. OK, suppose geological (of several varieties), radiological (of several varieties), cosmological (of several varieties), astronomical (of several varieties), and astrophysical dating all are in error. Why do they give the same wrong answer? They all say the universe is billions of years old. None gives a result in the thousands, millions, hundreds of millions, hundreds of billions, or trillions. Each different method tells us that the earth and the universe are billions of years old.

  3. Why did God fine tune the Universe for life if He simply materialized the earth in situ? No need for the amazing, inexplicable and precise balance of energy levels inside stars. That balancing, if slightly altered, would leave us without (through super nova explosions) the elements we need for planet formation and life. But in light of the fact the God created the earth intact, and that no stars have ever actually exploded, why the amazing and fortuitous nuclear chemistry?

The above line of questioning could go on ad nauseum. The point is, creation scientists accept and champion the biological design arguments, yet disdain all the incredible cosmological design arguments that so beautifully demonstrate Romans 1:20. Cosmological intelligent-design is only meaningful when viewed against the backdrop of an old universe. When taken in the context of a young universe it is something of an embarrassment; it is inexplicable to the point where it is better to ignore it altogether, lest you insult God's character by positing that science has no other purpose than to test the faith of the scientists.

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