This is the written transcript for Lesson 5 in this series of presentations on evidence for the existence of God — (it is likely that transcripts will vary somewhat from the actual video recordings).
This is the fifth lesson in our series in which we’re considering “relatively” simple scientific evidence for the existence of God. We are considering the “cosmological” viewpoint—that is, evidence from the creation. In lesson three we took a quick look at the 1st and 2nd Laws of Thermodynamics and the concept of “entropy.” In this lesson, we’re going to consider the simple:
Law of Biogenesis:
There is probably no simpler or better understood law in all of science. The scientific principle of biogenesis is simply this: all life originates from preexisting life; or, in other words, life comes only from life. All life forms within our universe, from the bottom of our deepest seas, to the heights of our tallest mountain peaks, to the most obscure life-sustaining planets in the most ancient and distant galaxies of the universe (assuming such planets exist), owe their existence to preexisting life forms. Science has never observed any form of life coming into existence from any source other than preexisting life.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that some scientists haven’t tried to disprove the fundamental concept of biogenesis. It is almost comical to consider the words of my friend and colleague, Bill Smith (2012), as he notes:
Several scientists have tried desperately, with all of the accumulated knowledge of science, to recreate life in a test-tube. In every attempt they have failed. Two scientists are best known for their attempts to recreate life in the laboratory, Dr. Stanley Miller and Dr. Sydney Fox. In their experiments they put some substances in an oxygen free environment and passed electricity to recreate the effect of lightning strikes. Did they produce life? Not only did they fail to create any life form; they actually strengthened the case for an intelligent creator. During the experiment several amino acids combined – something that must happen for life to form. Unfortunately they formed in the wrong gender combination. Amino acids are distinctly left-handed or right-handed. All life forms contain only left-handed amino acids. The Miller-Fox attempt combined an even mix of both amino acid configurations.
There are at least three other things to add about this vain endeavor. Smith goes on to note:
First, even if they had combined single-gender amino acids they are still a long way from creating life. Second, it’s a bit absurd to think that these exact components would be present in the perfect laboratory environment and then get struck by lightning at just the right time and power level. Third, oxygen had to be excluded from the experiment because it prevents the binding of amino acids. But wait! Oxygen is necessary to sustain life. Therefore the same environment needed to sustain life would prevent the creation of it. (Smith, 2012, p. 3)
I would like to add a fourth observation to the Miller-Fox experiment, and all others like it. Had they succeeded in creating the appropriate amino acids within an appropriate, life-sustaining environment, and had they, or should they one day actually manage to create life from non-living material in a test tube, will that not only prove our point that life must be “created”? Even if their experiments one day succeed, all it will confirm is that life in this physical universe, as we know it, does not spontaneously arise from non-living material, but that life must be engineered by some higher intelligence. Ironically, it could be said that the scientists, themselves, would have become the “life-forms” from which the new life arose. Am I the only one who finds this funny?
May the Lord continue to bless your sojourn toward eternity!
Resources and References:
Smith, B. (2012). Argument by creation: The cosmological argument. Retrieved from the knowtruth.com website at: http://www.knowtruth.com/god/existence/creation_argument_1.php
Scripture taken from:
NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright (c) 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972, 1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
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