In the Bible, King David wrote:
“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky shows His handiwork.” [Psalm 19:2]
In the New Testament, Paul the Apostle wrote:
“His invisible attributes—His eternal power and His divine nature—have been clearly seen ever since the creation of the world, being understood through the things that have been made.” [Romans 1:20]
What exactly did these two Jewish men mean?
When archaeologists discover pottery and clay vessels, they conclude that they couldn’t have been created on their own, but rather were intentionally designed according to a premeditated plan. They conclude (justifiably so) that an intelligent being planned and created these vessels. After all, no one would look upon the Azrieli Towers or the Great Wall of China and conclude that these structures were developed and created at random or as a result of an explosion at a gravel manufacturing plant.
As human beings, we have the innate capability of recognizing intelligent planning. We are surrounded by things which were planned with great creativity and resourcefulness: Robots, houses, computers and vehicles. No one would claim that these are the products of time and random occurrences. Metals don’t spontaneously become engines. So why do we fail to apply the same assumptions to things that are far more intricate and sophisticated, such as plants and animals?
Dr. Michael Denton, a biochemist specializing in molecular biology, wrote: “It is the sheer universality of perfection, the fact that everywhere we look, to whatever depth we look, we find an elegance and ingenuity of an absolute transcendent quality, which so migrates against the idea of chance… Alongside the level of ingenuity and complexity exhibited by the molecular machinery of life, even our most advanced artifacts appear clumsy… It would be an illusion to think that what we are aware of at present is any more than a fraction of the full extent of biological design.”
Life is made up of data. This data is stored in DNA molecules, which contain the genes of every living thing. If evolution is the planner, we should be able to see that it has created genetic codes. Anyone with a basic grasp on biology can understand what Darwin understood: That natural selection is a logical process which can be observed. However, natural selection can only occur based on data which already exists within the genes. That is, natural selection doesn’t create NEW data. Information and data cannot spontaneously appear where there were none.
Or, according to the Head of the IT Department at the German Federal Institute of Physics and Technology, Dr. Werner Gitt: “Mutations can only cause changes in existing information. There can be no increase in information, and in general the results are injurious… Mutations cannot be the source of new (creative) information.”
What is the source of the data in the universe?
Think back on the last time you were on an airplane. A Boeing 747, for instance, is made up of 6 million parts. On its own, none of these parts can fly. But all of them put together form a plane that can lift off and fly. Likewise, every single cell in our body contains thousands of biochemical mechanisms. For example: The mechanism which enables the cell to sense light and convert it into electric currents; a process which requires the compounds in the cell to be of the correct volume, place and moment. In other words, just like all the parts of an aircraft must be assembled in the correct way in order for the plane to take off, all of the parts assembling the biochemical mechanisms in each cell must be in a specific place, order and time in order to carry out their proper functions. And there are THOUSANDS of these biochemical mechanisms in every single cell, of them vital to the cell’s function. If we were so much as to remove a single screw from the plane’s rear, or unplug a single wire from its electrical system, we could disable the entire aircraft.
So, what does this mean? Simply put: Matter with no data cannot become a living thing on its own.
Here is a quote by the biochemist, Prof. Michael Behe: “The simplicity that was once expected to be the foundation of life has proven to be a phantom. Instead, systems of horrendous, irreducible complexity inhabit the cell. The resulting realization that life was designed by an intelligence is a shock to us, in the 20th century, who have gotten used to thinking of life as the result of simple natural laws.”
Every cell, out of the billions which make up the human body, contains an amount of data that could fill thousands of books. How do they perform in such perfect synergy and synchronization with the other cells? And where did all that data come from? Many skeptics suggest their answer through the allegory of the “Professor’s Hat”.
Weaknesses in the allegory of ‘The Professor’s Hat’
The allegory is this: A professor takes a bunch of notes containing all the letters of the alphabet, and places them into a hat. He approaches every student in his classroom and asks each one to pull a note from the hat at random. If the professor should repeat this process again and again and again, there is a chance that, at some point, a series of five letters will be formed which can, for example, spell out the word “hello”. Thus, one can conclude that, given enough time (billions of years, for example) eventually, an entire book could be written randomly. The conclusion is that, when DNA molecules meet, eventually – through random occurrence – life WOULD be formed. On the surface, this argument may sound logical, but it’s far from it.
Firstly, it fails to explain how the “letters” appeared on the “notes” in the first place. After all, the information on the note – the data – had to come from somewhere in the first place. Similarly, with no given factual law of nature, not one single process could occur in the universe.
Secondly, the letter sequence: H E L L O creates a word. But to whom? To someone from France? The Netherlands? China? “Hello” is an English word. In other words, the order of the letters is meaningless unless there are laws and a logical system in place to begin with, which deciphers and translates the letter sequence into something that has meaning. The DNA which exists in our cells contains a molecular sequence that has meaning. The cell’s biochemical structure is what gives this sequence meaning and this biochemical structure is made up of additional molecules. Without this system,the DNA would be entirely meaningless and without the DNA, the system would be senseless.
Thirdly, in order for life to be formed, a mechanism, which can crack the genetic code, must exist. Namely, it’s not enough to have the right data sequence and adequate surroundings. There must also be a mechanism which “knows” how to use the code in its vicinity. Without the inventors of the English language, not only would the information on the notes handed out by the professor (the letters) never exist, but the information itself would have no meaning whatsoever. Therefore, the multitudes of data within all life forms must come from a source with greater, deeper and higher intelligence than the creation itself. A source of eternal wisdom, which is beyond matter, space and time.
The eternal smartphone?
I recently bought a new cell phone. When my little boy first saw it, he probably stared at it and wondered: “How did this thing get here? Did someone put it here? Or maybe it was just always here? How does it work? And how exactly does the phone make calls and do other stuff?” Does the complexity of the processes involved not serve as evidence that there is some entity outside the device, smarter than the actual device? Someone who had to invest thought and planning in order to create it, so that it works in accordance with certain rules, which also had to exist beforehand? If someone were to say that the device was simply “always just there”, they would need to prove it, since everything else in the universe DID have a beginning and an external cause. Therefore, the logical conclusion is that the cell phone also had a beginning and a cause. Likewise, whoever says that the universe was “always just there”, with no creator, needs to prove it.
However, the theory of natural selection raises another issue. The scientist and world’s leading optometrist, Dr. Ming Wang, was made famous for his expertise and research of the human eye, received his MD from Harvard University and his PhD from MIT. He is one of the developers of the popular LASIK eye surgery and a world renowned eye surgeon. Pay attention to what he wrote: “As a medical doctor and a scientist, I can firmly attest to the fact that it is impossible for natural selection to explain the amazing intricacies of the eye”. He further explains that, “The eye contains countless components that focus images, adjust for brightness and process information to create a picture in the mind. In addition, the visual system is coordinated with locomotion and balance. Such a system clearly requires numerous parts to function together properly, to be of any use.” The theory of natural selection explains biological processes, such as the human body, as a slow progress of a series of different procedures. The problem is that, in order for many of them, such as the eye, to work – numerous preliminary conditions are a prerequisite. Varied, complex conditions that all must exist and operate perfectly in advance. That is why Dr. Ming stated that natural selection fails to provide us with a sufficient explanation.
To sum up, many skeptics belittle and disregard what the Apostle Paul and King David perceived thousands of years ago as a testament to God’s existence, but they could see that the universe and all the processes therein are so complex, creative and striking that, to them, they bear witness to a creator who planned and created the world through great wisdom and wondrous creativity.