Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Featured Article: Evidence for God from Design: The Teleological Argument


Hello everyone! This week's featured article comes from PleaseConvinceMe.com entitled Evidence for God from the Design: The Teleological Argument. I thought this article would be great to build on yesterday's flash video dealing with the Design Argument for God's Existence.

This article is more of a summary of the evidence available for design in our universe. As the website itself states:

"The information on this web page is a simple consolidation of the work of some great Christian thinkers, philosophers and scientists!"

Hence, this website is a great resource for those just getting a start in apologetics.

For those who are interested in exploring the Design Argument more in-depth, I highly recommend Dr. William Lane Craig's article, The Teleological Argument and the Anthropic Principle.

Finally, here is a great links page for those desiring to explore Creation, Intelligent Design, and/or Evolution more in-depth.

Hope these resources are helpful!

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

10 comments:

bobxxxx said...

Hello. I get google email alerts for intelligent design, creationism, evolution, and darwinism, because one of my hobbies is giving evolution deniers a hard time. You're my next victim (ha ha). I often get censored because Christians generally don't like it when their childish beliefs are not respected.

I've been studying evolutionary biology for several years, and I continue to be amazed at the massive evidence for evolution. I keep finding more reasons to love evolution and I have never found any reason to doubt the truth of evolution. I've also been reading the garbage put out by creationists, including creationists who call their childish belief in supernatural magic "intelligent design". I've seen all their misconceptions (intentional lying?).

Creationists have many things in common, especially their willful ignorance. They refuse to study the discoveries of real scientists as explained by those scientists. Instead they prefer to get all their science information filtered by professional liars for Jeebus. They read only what they already agree with, which is the best way possible to learn nothing.

There's millions of proofs for evolution. One of my favorite proofs for evolution is the powerful evidence molecular biologists can see with their own eyes when they compare human chromosome number two to the 2 corresponding chromosomes in chimpanzees. After our ancestors split from the ancestors of chimps, one of our ancient ancestors was born with two chromosomes fused together, and eventually this fusion spread throughout what was probably a very small population of the pre-human race. Biologists predicted there must be a fused chromosome in humans to explain why chimps and other ape species have one more pair of chromosomes than we do. The fused chromosome was found (human chromosome two) and when they got the complete genome of chimps, they found the matching chromosomes there, with everything perfectly lining up. Evolution was tested and it passed.

A molecular biologist could spend years explaining the millions of other proofs for evolution from just their one branch of science. That's how massive this evidence is and it's still growing every day.

The religious implications are your problem. You're going to have to deal with those implications because today in the 21st century it's totally ridiculous to continue denying what every biologist knows. We share an ancestor with chimps, and more distant ancestors with every other life form on earth. We are part of nature, not magically created to be separate from nature.

I suggest study reality instead of denying it. It's a terrible waste of a life to not understand how your species developed.

Good luck and have a nice day. Click my name if you want to learn more about our 2nd chromosome.

Chad said...

Bobxxxx,

Yes, I am aware of who you are.

You have visited Truthbomb before:

http://truthbomb.blogspot.com/2008/11/idea-intelligent-design-and-evolution.html

A very similar comment.

At any rate, on to your recent comments…

You labeling my beliefs as “childish” is irrelevant. The questions is, “Are my beliefs true?”

As I have seen “garbage” put out by Creationists, Evolutionists, and IDers, I would rather focus on an actual argument.

You wrote that “there are millions of proofs of evolution,” but then go on to offer one (chromosome fusion) that could just as easily be interrupted as evidence for a Creator, if one is open-minded enough to consider that possibility. Genetic and morphological similarities are no more evidence of common descent than a common Designer. Both foresee and predict commonalities.

It is one’s philosophical pre-suppositions that leads him to the belief that “evolution was tested and passed.”

Please see the following links, which may prove helpful in providing a more balanced viewpoint:

1. http://www.ideacenter.org/contentmgr/showdetails.php/id/1392

2. http://lukeplant.me.uk/blog.php?id=1107301656

I’m sure someone like yourself, who is so well-studied, will have already considered the arguments presented in the above articles; after all, you would not want to “read only what you agree with.”

And please stop with the “every biologist knows” line. Real science, in my view, should not have to resort to this type of argumentation. If I, or even a creationist (gasp), raises an argument worth considering, the argument should be dealt with. Simply saying, “You are a lying (fill in your desired insult here) creationist” is not an answer. In fact, when one appeals to this type of argumentation, it’s most likely because he hasn‘t dealt with the arguments or can‘t.

Thank you for stopping by and, as with your last visit, any comments with senseless name-calling, vulgarity, or personal attacks, will not be published.

Thank you

bobxxxx said...

You wrote that "there are millions of proofs of evolution,” but then go on to offer one (chromosome fusion) that could just as easily be interrupted as evidence for a Creator, if one is open-minded enough to consider that possibility.Molecular biologists made a prediction. They said there must be a chromosome in humans that is a fusion of two chromosomes. Also, this fused chromosome must match up perfectly with two different chromosomes in chimps.

Did creationists make a similar prediction? No, of course not.

Did these predictions turn out to be correct? Yes, they were correct. They were perfectly correct.

Biologists have been testing evolution for 150 years and evolution has passed every test.

You want more examples?

ERVs, many ERVs, are found in the exact identical locations in the genome of people and chimps. ERVs are inherited. The only possible explanation is those ERVs were inherited from a common ancestor of chimps and people.

You can't use the common designer idea for that one because ERVs were inserted long after your magic fairy would have created those two species.

Want more examples? The complete genome of people and chimps are available online. Anyone can go online and compare DNA sequences for themselves.

This evidence is not just for primates. Molecular biologists have been and continue to compare DNA sequences of different living species every single day, always adding to the huge mountains of powerful evidence for evolution.

Meanwhile thousands of other scientists from many different branches of science contribute even more to the huge amount of evidence for evolution. Fossils are being found and other discoveries are being made every single day. The evidence is growing so rapidly it would be impossible for any one person to keep up with it.

Meanwhile how much evidence has been found which contradicts evolution?

In the past 150 years: nothing. Not one piece of evidence ever found has ever been against evolution. The basic facts of evolution have become the strongest facts of science.

Is there more than one way to interpret evidence from molecular biology?

The answer is NO, unless you think you know more about molecular biology than molecular biologists.

It's interesting to me that people who know absolutely nothing about science think they know more about science than the entire scientific community.

You are one of those people, sir, and you insult every scientist when you make claims they know are false. You insult their integrity and their hard work.

Would you tell your brain surgeon, if you needed one, how to do his job? Probably not. So why do you think you know more about science than scientists?

Click my name to learn about ERVs.

Or would you rather go running to your favorite Liar for Jeebus?

Earlier today I was curious what the Christian creationist Discovery Institute would say about Human Chromosome Two. What I found was some extremely obvious dishonesty, written by a lawyer who had no idea what he was talking about.

The creationists need better liars because they aren't fooling anyone.

I'd like to remind you that this is the year 2009. We are not living in the Dark Ages. When, for goodness sakes, are you ever going to join the rest of us here in the 21st century?

Chad said...

Bobxxxx,

I am curious as to how you have come to the conclusion that the Christian God is “a magic fairy.”

I know that in American Universities there are numerous highly educated philosophers who are Christians. They have the highest academic credentials. Some are even philosophers of science. If I tried to convince you that Christianity was true because many highly educated philosophers say so, you would most likely reply, “So what?;” and I wouldn’t blame you. Nor would I try to imply that you believed you knew more than contemporary philosophers do. You would want to weigh the arguments for yourself and draw your own conclusions.

Further, I of course believe it’s helpful to refer to and read authoritative sources from whatever discipline I am studying; however, I am not going to simply believe what they say because they hold degrees in the topic. I am going to do my best to critically analyze the arguments they present or do not present and draw my own conclusions.

You seem to be implying the following: “The scientists say it, I believe it, which settles it.” Sorry, but that is not a persuasive argument. If you want to treat evolutionary biologists as infallible, you have that right. However, don’t criticize those of us who strive to think for ourselves.

It is interesting that you would mention ERV’s. Labeled by scientists as “junk DNA,” it was the creationists and IDers who predicted that they would have a purpose. Guess what? More and more research is being uncovered that reveals that “junk DNA” is not junk after all. Now, if I apply the same argument you used in your prior comment regarding chromosome fusion, the discovery that some ERV’s have a purpose, as predicted by Creationists and IDers, would be evidence for a Intelligent Design, would it not?

For more on the functions found for supposed ERV’s, see here:

http://creation.com/large-scale-function-for-endogenous-retroviruses

Further, evolutionists like yourself have used shared mistakes in junk DNA as proof that humans and chimps have a common ancestor; But if the similar sequences are functional, which they are gradually proving to be, your argument fails.

I find it interesting that evolutionists are so quick to make snap judgments in order to validate what they hold so dear. I thought science had a tendency to change, grow, and develop; however, you seem to make science an unquestionable dogma which really serves to discourage, not promote, responsible scientific inquiry.

Finally, as quoted in the article above, evolutionist Dr John Mattick, director of the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, was spot on in his assessment of the gravity of the ‘junk DNA’ error:

‘The failure to recognize the full implications of this—particularly the possibility that the intervening non-coding sequences may be transmitting parallel information … may well go down as one of the biggest mistakes in the history of molecular biology.”

Perhaps I’m not the one who is in the “dark ages?”

Thank you

bob said...

Chad - "However, don’t criticize those of us who strive to think for ourselves."

Chad, I love you man, but oh my gosh!

I continue to visit your blog from time to time, and one thing I notice, that I notice with just about every believer, is this-You never have anything critical to say about the beliefs or statements of those you highlight on your blog. What is one to take from this? Either you believe everything they say (which kind of debunks your "think for ourselves" claim, or they are actually always correct.
Since I don't really know anyone who is always correct, I am guessing you don't either, which leaves me to conclude that, with regard to your creationist beliefs, you should not claim to be thinking for yourself.

Shouldn't you admit, as I do, that you glean much (most) of what you believe (conclude), based on the statements of those who are more "learned" than you? And you accept what they say, as I do, largely on presuppositions.

Brian said...

bob:

This seems to be an obviously false dilemma have you proposed.

Are you suggesting that Chad should point out everything he might possibly disagree with when he links to something, or otherwise be branded as an absolute adherent to everything he links to?

Chad said...

Hello Bob! Great to hear from you; really! So glad that you still visit the blog. Hope all is well with you and your family.

Your comment appears in quotes:

“You never have anything critical to say about the beliefs or statements of those you highlight on your blog. What is one to take from this?”

One of the purposes of this blog is to provide resources for those who want to explore the truth claims of Christianity. It is a church ministry, not a platform for my own views.

Although I have written articles numerous times in the past on the blog, there purpose has been to present evidence, to the best of my limited ability, and allow the reader to draw their own conclusion.

In summary, the blog is meant to put resources in the hands of believers and hopefully challenge the thinking of those who don’t believe.

I certainly do not agree with everything each of the authors featured on Truthbomb.

However, the question must be posed: “Do I have to agree with everything someone says in order to feature them?” or “If I do feature them, does that automatically mean that I agree with everything they say?”

If you quote say, Dan Barker, I don’t automatically assume you agree with everything he says; I just assume you believe there is something to the argument presented that is worth listening to or considering.

I believe your last point can be answered by quoting myself (I agree with me!) :-)

“Further, I of course believe it’s helpful to refer to and read authoritative sources from whatever discipline I am studying; however, I am not going to simply believe what they say because they hold degrees in the topic. I am going to do my best to critically analyze the arguments they present or do not present and draw my own conclusions.”

That is all I can do.

Bob, it really is great to hear from you. Hope all is well with you.

Take Care

Chad said...

Correction:

I certainly do not agree with everything each of the authors featured on Truthbomb(presents or teaches).

My apologies

Randy said...

Thanks for the clarification Chad. I guess, from my perspective, it would be healthy to the dialogue if, on occasion, you offered even a tidbit, a small example of a disagreement you might have with those you continually highlight. But, as you say, your blog is not for the purpose of displaying your own views. I understand.

Brian, why would you put words in my mouth? I did not suggest that Chad should point out "every" disagreement he has with those apologists he highlights. I was just wondering why I had never seen even one disagreement.
Did you just turn me into a straw man?

Chad said...

Randy,

Thank you so much for changing your name! :-) I was thinking, "Man, readers are going to get confused with all the bobs!"

I will certainly take your thoughts into consideration. Feedback is always helpful to make the blog better. I greatly appreciate it.

I just want to restate that it's great to hear from you.

Take care