examinescience

A personal journey into the world of Science and Human History

Category: Evolution

Eric Metaxas and the Unprovable Theory

Even the most ardent evolutionary biologist would probably admit that finding that one moment in time where life suddenly happened from non-life is almost impossible. I know a few atheist apologists out there who might be willing to weigh in on the issue in the comments, and if they do, I’ll try to keep up.

I’ve used the argument before that we cannot know when the first cell developed. I’ve also asked the question, “where did the material come from for the Big Bang? Apparently, the answer to that one is that it came from a previously existing universe. Honestly, I can see how that might have happened. Of course, it doesn’t explain where the material from THAT universe came from, but this becomes a pretty circular argument and doesn’t prove creation any more than saying “God did it” and not having a better answer proves evolution.

Eric Metaxas, a writer I trust and enjoy (especially his biography of Bonhoeffer), wrote a piece on Break Point about how evolution is now even more difficult to prove since a discovery in Australia has shed some light on the earliest signs of life. In essence, the article suggests that life started further back than evolutionists currently claim. In Metaxas’ mind, this signifies a problem for evolutionists because it forces them to do two things.

  1. It throws off their numbers, beginning with when things first came to life. If it happened a few hundred million years before they originally thought, then they have to redo all of the other numbers too, and that presents problems.
  2. According to Metaxas, life started too early in the evolutionary timeline to allow for evolution. At the time of these living rocks, Earth was still too hot to really hold life. How could evolution have really happened?

So a few issues. First, evolutionists will quickly point out that life has been created in a lab. I disagree slightly with the idea that this equals life, since it was really a modification of an already existing bacteria. Still, it is life, as it were. Metaxas makes the argument that life cannot be created. That’s a side project in his article, and honestly I wish it wasn’t even there. It’s not relevant to his actual point.

Second, disproving evolution doesn’t prove God. This is something Christians have to stop doing. I’ll give you the atheist answer: We understand that this evidence disproves what we believed was true about life’s timeline. We’ll go back to the drawing board on that note and figure it out. You see, an evolutionist never stops trying to figure out the science of the issue.

Third, proving that life started earlier than scientists first imagined doesn’t prove creation because IT’S STILL HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF YEARS AGO! By making his claim against evolution, that it started so much earlier than scientists first thought and that therefore evolution can’t be correct, Metaxas is saying that God created these living organisms millions of years before Christians accept his creation. It’s a horrible circular argument and a byproduct of trying to find the smoking gun against evolution.

Too many Christians think they can find evolution’s achilles heel. There isn’t one. Each obstacle in science merely produces a new direction for research.

Look, it’s hopefully become very clear over the last few months that I’ve tipped my hat toward creation. I am a Christian and I believe God created the world. I believe scientific thought can show us how that happened, not that I need to have it proven by science. Still, it’s so vitally important that we not shut the door to those doing this research for us because we need their research to understand God more. We’ve got to stop thinking that we have the smoking gun, especially when all we end up doing is alienating ourselves.

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Should a Christian Study Evolution?

I hesitate to even write this post. What if I sound fake? What if I sound like I’m throwing my conservative upbringing aside? What if I’m labeled a heretic and never get to minister in theologically conservative churches again?

Yes, Christians should study evolution. Here’s why: Your kids are in school! My son is in advanced biology. He brought home an assignment a few days ago that detailed a certain aspect of evolution. I talked with him about it, and it became clear that, while he rejected the notion because of what he was taught in church, he was still being fed evolution in the classroom. Our kids may not be able to differentiate the issue enough to know that they actually are the same. Instead of realizing that teachers are trying to tell him his God didn’t create the world, he’s compartmentalizing school and church.

And I don’t know that our church is teaching him this either. Not that it’s really my church’s purpose. I am his father. It is my job. Time to get busy. What I learn over time I will be teaching you.

As an involved father, at least as involved as I can be my navy career notwithstanding, I need to be a part of my children’s learning process. I can’t just say, “Well, it’s not true,” when they bring home an assignment. Why? Because their grade depends on them writing papers and doing projects that support evolutionary theory! So what do I do? I study the issues so I can arm my kids with facts.

Here are a few other reasons we should study evolution:

  1.  Some of it is probably true: I’ll be writing a post in the next few weeks about dating methods
  2. Evolutionary theory can show us how God created the world.
  3. Most importantly, studying evolution and realizing points 1 and 2 can help the conservative church restore humanity to God.

I don’t often agree with the strategy flavor of the week. I don’t think that churches should be marketing themselves (more than simply making themselves known in the community), I don’t think things are really “purpose” driven, or driven in any other way (Gospel, Community, whatever). I think churches should be places where the sick are cared for, the poor are elevated, where women and children are equals, and things like this.

However, after reading some of the book The Next Christians, by Gabe Lyons, I realized an unsettling truth…I’ve spent a lot of my life trying to be separate from the world, and from less-conservative (theologically) churches. Lyons calls it restoring the world to a relationship with God, and that’s true. If our faith story starts in a perfect garden, but science doesn’t teach that, then we have an issue. My work on this project seeks to find the truth so we can restore the unbelieving world to a relationship with God.

So we study.

What’s faith got to do with Science?

In my estimation, the average atheist scientist has as much or more faith than the average Christian. 

I’ve been studying the ideas of evolution and creation for almost a year now. My reason for examining science has been many fold, and will be covered in a different post. I’ve researched cystic fibrosis, which is something near and dear to me as it runs in my family. From there I started studying human origins. To that end, I’ve written about Neanderthals and I’ve got a post in the works on Lucy, thought to be one of the first human ancestors.

In doing this research, with what I believe are now proper motivations, I’ve started feeling pretty good about myself. After all, I want to find out how God did it. How did he design the whole thing? Did he use a long time? How did he move one species to another? While sometimes I admit that the process gets me down, overall I’m quite excited about the research.

Until recently when I read Hebrews 11. Of course, as a person who grew up in the church, I have read the faith “hall of fame” many times. Hebrews 11:1 is a verse that (in KJV) I know by heart to this day.

The verse that got me thinking was the third verse: “By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.”

Suddenly, I was unnerved by the Word of God. I do still believe in the Bible, don’t I? even if I’m willing to admit that Genesis 1 may not be the whole story, don’t I believe in the first verse? As I write this post, yes, I do believe that, in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Scientifically speaking, this is the big bang. Whether the point of singularity was God-created (for Christians) or a dense piece of matter (evolutionists), the heavens and the earth were created at some point.

But do I believe that it was God? and if I do, isn’t that as far as I need to go? Shouldn’t it spell the end of the blog/research project?

 

I don’t think so, although the situation reminded me to keep this research project in perspective. I do believe it is important, from a purely apologetical perspective, to discover as much about science as we can. But more important than that, studying how this all came about helps us reach the lost. It helps us understand the average Joe’s base mindset going in to a discussion.

To answer the question posed in the title of this post, faith has everything to do with it. An evolutionary scientist does not know how everything came about, but he or she believes with great faith that science will betray the answers of the universe in time. In my estimation, the average atheist scientist has as much or more faith than the average Christian.

I don’t mean that flippantly, like some Christian apologists do when they say, “It takes more faith to believe in evolution than it does the Bible.” I don’t think that’s a true statement. I mean that, for the gaps that still exist in science (and there are plenty), the average scientist believes with an amazing amount of faith that the answers will be found and that those answers will continue to prove out the modified theory of evolution.

Yet I also have faith…faith that their research will give me answers in my research!

Because I’m convinced that this research project holds value as a tool to understand how God created everything, I will continue it, albeit at a slower rate than I had been going. Human evolution, or whatever it is, intrigues me, as does the overall age of the universe. I expect to learn a great deal while studying these things.

Until next time…

Dr. Ken Miller and the Missing Chromosome

A friend of mine suggested I listen to a YouTube video about evolution by Dr. Ken Miller. I had never heard of him before, so I gave it a look (took me too long to agree to that, by the way). Anyway, I listened to it and, if you dare, you can too:

So there are four points about the video I want to point out. First, Dr. Miller calls himself a believer in God toward the end. I thought that was most intriguing, though I had heard of Catholics doing that in the past. I think other non-evangelical sects do that too. Anyway, what I got from that is that it is possible to be a Christian and believe evolution occurred as a pathway to how we got here. I discuss the flip side of this situation in point four.

This leads me to point two. If evolution occurred, and if the 48 verses 46 chromosome issue is a fact (I’m still researching it), and if God does exist, then at what point did he first talk to humans? Was Lucy (Australopithecus Afarensis) God’s friend? What about Neanderthal? Or just Homo Sapiens like Abraham? This is a working thesis of mine, but it’s taking so long to develop it that I’m afraid it’s going to burn on the back burner where I’m letting it simmer way too long.

Third, and this actually struck me earlier in the video, he speaks about losing a pair of chromosomes. I appreciate him looking into it enough to realize that we didn’t just lose the chromosomes. In fact, any time a person is born without a Chromosome, it’s called monosomy, which is how we get females with Turner’s Syndrome. Humans can be born with an extra chromosome as well, and that is called trisomy, which is what causes Down’s Syndrome.

I’ve always held that mutations are bad, however they occur in nature. My daughter’s disease (cystic fibrosis) is a prime example. There is nothing good about the disease, yet plenty good about the individual (Samantha). In our quest for understanding science and the Bible, we cannot just assume that the chromosome issue (or genetics in general) has an easy answer or that it fits easily in the overall story. Dr. Miller is correct on that issue, though it was on of his least-labored points.

Fourth, Dr. Miller also inadvertently brings up the issue I’m most concerned about. In this one video, he purports to essentially destroy intelligent design and prove that we are descendants of apes. Yet at the end he calls himself a Catholic and believes in a God that wouldn’t mislead us. This seems to be the ultimate contradiction. It’s also one of the reasons I am very close to closing the door on the Gap Theory…it looks like a doctrine that would come from a God trying to trick us.

But what kind of God does Dr. Miller believe in then? And who is this god? The God I believe in led his original followers to write about him in a way that made him out to be the creator of everything. Dr. Miller’s god does not seem to be this being.

Of course my research is not complete. Dr. Miller’s argument, though seemingly rock solid, is but one area of research for me. Until next time…

Ussher was Wrong

800px-James_Ussher_by_Sir_Peter_LelyOutside of truly fundamentalist circles, very few people believe that the earth is only 6,000 years old. AIG and ICR still hold to the idea that the earth was created on or about October 23, 4004BC. The AIG article I linked to is much more extensive in its declaration that Ussher was right.

I grew up believing the data that Ussher calculated. I also grew up with the misconception that he calculated the data only based on the Bible. This gives the indication that, if the Bible is proved false in its interpretation of historical events, then Ussher’s calculation is automatically void. However, he based his calculations on much more data than just what is in the generational account of the scriptures. In fact, Ussher used sources from the Greek regarding the ages of the Babylonian rulers. The reason for this is because the Biblical account becomes somewhat muddy concerning generations and timeframes after that period. I suppose it’s hard to keep track when you’re a slave.

Ok, so what? Well, I want to present two facts about this.

  1.  Ussher did the best research he could considering what he had available. As a scholar, Bishop Ussher managed to cross connect a variety of sources. His efforts are to be commended. In fact, I would call it (without resorting too much to heresy) the third revelation of God in our lives. I will explain them in a future post.
  2. Ussher was wrong. Just because it was the best scholarship of the day does not mean that he was correct. He was just correct for his time. I don’t think I believe the six literal days of Genesis are correct, but they were correct for their time and for the purpose God intended.* It is not different for Ussher. He may have been on to something, such as delineating the generations since Hebrew civilization took hold, but he did not know the age of the earth.

Ussher did not have the benefit of radiocarbon dating, which in itself allows for things to be dated to around 50,000 years, almost ten times as old as Ussher would have ever allowed. Yes, the dating method has some issues, but it is far more accurate than it is not.

Further, we have other methods of dating objects and fossils. I will undoubtedly delve deeper into this at some point, but some of the accurate ones are radiometric dating and argon, etc. Almost all dating methods (outside of Ussher’s genealogy dating and tree-ring dating, etc) use half-life measurements of various isotopes (such as argon from potassium), which break down into other elements over time. These dating methods suggest the earth is very much older than Ussher thought (and Newton, Kepler, and others, by the way). A good, basic primer on dating can be found at this website.

Ussher was wrong, almost by any measurement of time. This doesn’t even account for the age of light coming from distant stars, which is a topic unto itself.

My research on the age of the earth will continue, as will the work on the evolution/creation of man. I have learned some things about Lucy that I’m particularly interested in getting your thoughts on. Until the next post…

 

*Some reading this, and perhaps someday if I ever get this data published, may say that I have flipflopped, or that I started with preconceived ideas about the age of the earth, man’s evolution, etc. That is the detrimental thing about a blog. As my impression of the evidence changes over time, I appear to flipflop like a politician. I am merely trying to make sense of the data, just like you might. In fact, I hope you will seriously look into this issue, wrestle with it, and see just how much you flipflop yourself.

This Day in History: Scopes Monkey Trial

In the small town of Dayton, Tennessee, in some of the hottest weather of the year, two heavyweights or oration and law met over the teaching of a quiet teacher of slight build named John Thomas Scopes. It was one of the worst events in the church’s collective history. While it did not kill people like the Salem witch trials or the Inquisition, it effectively alienated the religious institution from the scientific community.

To be fair to my fundamentalist forefathers, it was a circus show to begin with. The ALCU staged most of it by picking a fight through the likes of Scopes. I rather think that Scopes had no idea what the ALCU had cooked up for him, but such is life.

Still, even though baited and prodded by the ALCU and others, Scopes did indeed break the law (Butler Act of 1925), by teaching evolution in his classroom. The funny thing is that no one ever thought that the law would be enforced. Not even the governor of Tennessee planned to actually enforce the law he signed.

Yet the stage was set and the big guns came in to town for a trial starting on the 1oth of July, 1925. I think that Bryan thought he was winning (indeed he did get the ruling as a fine was levied against Scopes), but in hindsight, he lost before he started, just like the modern evangelicals are losing with the issue of homosexual marriage.

The Scopes Monkey Trial ended in the death of Bryan (he passed five days after the trial), the end of Scopes’ teaching career (he went on to study geology), and almost zero pressure on evolutionary scientists while it further alienated Christianity from science. It was not worth it.

We must be better…do better. And we will.

Neanderthal: The Other Human

sting

Copyright: http://www.sting.com. All rights reserved.

I’m a big Sting fan. Ok, I have one of his albums and part of a Police greatest collection. Still, I love his music. It’s soothing, complicated, deep, and yet fun. Very good stuff. One song in particular makes gives me a giggle. It’s called Seven Days and it’s about a woman who has given her man seven days to make a decision about her before she moves on to another man. In that song, Sting sings about his rival and his situation. Here’s a few lines from the song:

Ask if I’m a mouse or man
The mirror squeaked, away I ran
He’ll murder me
In time for his tea
Does it bother me at all?
My rival is Neanderthal

neanderthal-national-geo_front-300x199

Picture from National Geographic.

We all have that one guy at work who acts like he drags his knuckles down the hall as he walks. He’s rather obtuse at times and he’d be more at home pounding something into something else than delicate repair work on something like electronics. Sting’s song is cute, but it belays a foundational problem for us: We treat Neanderthals like they’re a joke, but they are not. Not only is Neanderthal not a joke for Christians, but he’s someone that we have to truly come to terms with.

Here’s why:  Christians tend to explain Neanderthals away by saying that they were just humans who had diseases or deformities. They say this because of the unique bone structure and walking gait, among a few other things. If you have that mindset, you are partially correct. Neanderthal and human DNA is pretty close, differing at some 3 million points among billions. That seems pretty close, especially if you consider that the Chimpanzee is close enough to be 30 million points off of ours. Unfortunately, those 3 million are pretty important differences.

This is why Christians must wrestle with the issue of Neanderthals, and other humanoids for that matter. It would seem that we have more than one species of human on our hands, and Neanderthals is just the most famous of them. He certainly isn’t the only one. Anyone remember Lucy? Now that scientists have mapped some of the genetic code for Neanderthals, we know that they were different enough to be human-like, but not human as we are.

Not only must we wrestle with the issue, but we will…on this blog and in the coming book. It’s too important not too. And I have a theory brewing in the back of my mind about how it all relates to Genesis One.

To keep up with the research, click HERE.

Dearest Mother mtDNA Eve

My mother came from Africa…well, if you trace the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) back far enough. Science generally accepts this theory as having enough evidence to call a fact, or as much of a fact as scientists can without contradicting scientific dogma.

I remember talking to an atheist about this issue once. While he made various arguments about human evolution, I countered with the idea that, once upon a time, there had to be an eve. There had to be one human who was different enough from the apes around her that she was Eve. And there had to be a male who could mate with her, so once upon a time there had to be an Adam too.

My friend accepted my argument, but only despairingly. He certainly accepted that there had to be an original evolved couple that was different as to be called human, but of course he couldn’t accept the names Adam and Eve.

nwswk8I had no idea then, because I had just started my journey, but this is really an old argument in scientific circles. My friend and I just hadn’t learnt about it! In the 11 January, 1998 issue of Newsweek, an African-American-looking couple graced the cover. It wasn’t a normal shot of a couple, however. Instead, it mirrored the normally Caucasian version of Adam and Eve we see in older children’s Bible storybooks.

There was a time when scientists thought that the different races of homo sapiens sprung up individually in different regions. This is called the multiregionalism and while not completely disproven, it looks rather obsolete as a theory. I plan to write about that in some detail later on in the journey.

Ironically, the Eve of science isn’t all that old. She was probably alive around 200,000 years ago, and most likely in Africa.[1] With evolution’s timeframe consisting of some billions of years or more, it’s interesting to note that the evolution of human really took a foothold so recently.

But where does this leave us? I think this puts us in a great place! Unfortunately, many, many of my brothers and sisters in fundamentalist camps (read: evangelical) will reject the idea because it’s more than a 6,000 year timeline and science still holds that it required evolutionary movement from an ape-like animal to human.

Yet the journey isn’t about finding a magical bullet. Rather, I am trying to investigate science for what it might show me about God’s creative process. In that the “Our of Africa” model, with it’s beginning point at mtDNA Eve, I find a great common point between creation and evolution. And now that there is also a way to trace the Adam Y chromosome as well, a truly common point of emphasis is starting to form.[2]

I used to be caught up in the fight against Peking Man, Java Man, Lucy, and the rest. I rejected a common ancestor because I thought that scientists were trying to show that all of them were on my ancestral timeline. Once Eve became a reality, however, a clearer picture formed.

There is still much work to do, and much more research to sift through. But I am excitedly celebrating the idea of mitochondrial Eve and look forward to learning more about “mom.”

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[1] Oppenheimer, Stephen. The Real Eve: Modern Man’s Journey Out of Africa, Carroll and Graf Publishers, New York. 2003. Pg 37.

[2] Ibid, pg 41.

Transition to the next Topic

Your children, as you already know, are inundated with ages of the earth that are astronomically different than most evangelical estimates. This can cause some confusion and leave evangelical children outside looking in socially and educationally in public schools. The goal of this blog is to keep that from happening by arming you with real data in as unbiased a manner as possible.

The central question to be asked in order to combat his issue is this: Can Genesis and evolutionary science reside together? I hope so, but I have concerns that must be addressed. This post attempts to do so while providing a path ahead.

We know, in general terms, what evolutionary science tells us about the “creation” of everything. Most notably, it takes a very, very long time and like doesn’t always give way to like. Creation accounts from Genesis, however, suggest that creation was fairly short, certainly not billions upon billions of years, and that God created everything, “after its kind.”

This is the problem: If God created everything, and evolution says everything happened by chance, how could they coexist?

We must always go back to the beginning. Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” We can debate timeframes later. The important thing to understand is that it doesn’t allow for macro forms of evolution. “Read literally, this precludes evolution of one “kind” of plant or animal to another.”[1]

Genesis isn’t the only place that this occurs. John 1:1-3 tells the same story, but introduces Jesus as the co-creator with the Father. Here is the passage:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.”

My concern is that both of these passages, if read literally, remove the allowance of any macroevolution of any kind into the mind of the faithful follower of Christ. It probably doesn’t remove the idea of microevolution, as my daughter’s cystic fibrosis (CF) didn’t create a different kind of humanoid, but just a mutation that is at least hypothesized to defeat tuberculosis.

The Bible says that God created all of the “kinds” of animals, plants, fish, etc on this planet and left no place for the creation of one “kind” from another by chance. If evolution were proven correct, then, it would leave little place for the Bible. At best, it would remain as a testament to an older time of myth. At worst, it would be a relic of ignorant fools.

The example I can’t shake is the Mammoth, which is a cousin to the Asian elephant via some ancient, prehistoric elephant. If AiG and ICR are correct, then the Mammoth and the Asian elephant were together on the ark. Presumably the African elephant as well. Genetics suggest a different story.

I read a good book on this subject called How to Clone a Mammoth, by Dr. Beth Shapiro. It’s an excellent book on cloning, genetics, evolution, and extinction. The problem is that it lays out a good case for how the mammoth and other elephants evolved, and that wasn’t even the goal of the book!

The biggest issue is the genetics connection between the mammoth and the Asian elephant. Geographically, it makes sense that the two are related because Asian elephants could have been a natural southern cousin to the northern mammoths. But the problem is that they’re different species, yet have so much concurrent genetic code that we can use Asian elephants (someday) to clone a mammoth (or something close to it).

I don’t want to be too forward in invoking the dad card here, but we’ve simply got to figure out this stuff. First, does the Bible allow for this sort of evolution? I’m not sure it does. Genesis 1:1+ and John 1:1-3 seem to allow only for God in creating actual species. I don’t think the Bible cares how long we’ve been here, but I do think it wants us to know that He created all of the species.

Unfortunately, naturalists have known for a long time that not all species lived together at the same time. As early as the 1820s, long before Darwin sailed to the Galapagos Islands, naturalists and paleontologists knew that different strata in the geological record had different specimens. More than that, the specimens appeared and disappeared, indicating different creations and extinctions.[2] This idea had sprung up around the same time in England with a fellow named William Smith, who, as a canal digger, realized that different strata along his canals contained very different specimens. While Smith never made a conclusion against faith, and as far as we know stayed true to his religious stance, he did realize that something wasn’t as traditionally taught.[3]

But there were no other creations, at least not without a gap theory, and we’ve looked into that and found that theory lacking, unfortunately, though more research is needed.

So I’m going to turn my attention from cystic fibrosis (as a research project) to the fossil record, particularly with the mammoth, to see if I can find an answer to the issue at hand.

Your comments are welcome below, as is your subscription to this blog, which you can get by clicking HERE.

[1] Larson, Edward J. Evolution: The Remarkable History of a Scientific Theory. Random House. New York, NY, 2004. Pg 11.

[2] Ibid, pg 29

[3] Prothero, Donald R. Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why it Matters. Columbia University Press, 2007. pg 55.

Creation, Evolution, and Cystic Fibrosis (Part Five)

May is the month for cystic fibrosis awareness. It is also the month we conduct our annual Great Strides walk, which seeks to raise funds and awareness to combat this deadly disease. As I am a husband and a father before I am an amateur scientist, my loyalty is always going to be to my family.

I’ve said it before…we all have our biases. These are the presumptions that we bring to a particular issue. This can apply to everything from how we handle conflict at work to how we approach a research project. It also comes with us as part of our morality. Flawed though I am, I carry a certain moral code in me, just like you do, that I bring to the issue of cystic fibrosis.

At first, I was intrigued about the decline of cystic fibrosis in Brittany, a region of France. I’m not a mathematician, so wrapping my head about a formula that could show the increase or decrease in cases in any region just about blows my mind. I just don’t see how two people who haven’t been tested for a disease can prevent the future chances (roughly 1 in 4 according to Mendelian genetics) of the mutations being passed down. So when the cases were being reported in a decline in Brittany, I looked into it.

“We show, in this study, that the birth incidence of CF has dropped in our area following the implementation of prenatal diagnosis.”[1] It’s so clinical…so sterile. We have found a drop in CF since we learned how to predict if a baby in the womb has CF. Well, there’s only one way that ends, isn’t there? So here are the numbers according to the Scotet study: A full 35.8% of CF children were aborted on the sole basis of them having CF. Not allowed to live. Killed in the womb. Let it sink in for a minute.

This is evolution at its finest. Humans, the current evolutionary peak in nature, have decided to conduct evolution for themselves. After all, in mid-century 1900s and before, people with CF didn’t usually live into their teenage years anyway. This is just speeding up the process. And why have a child who suffers when you don’t have to?

This doesn’t just apply to CF either. “They both now take part in both premarital and prenatal testing, and even though every one in five pregnancies is abnormal, they can determine which embryos carry two copies of the same mutation and choose to terminate.”[2] This is in regards to Samaritans who can suffer from a wide array of genetic conditions. Yes, that’s the same Samaritans that Jesus talked about as being a good neighbor.

None of us want to pass on bad genes to our children. We want them to have the best of us…we want them to be better than us. So the answer is this: “Doctors can test a fetus early in pregnancy and terminate it if it carries the mutation.” This is in regards to Huntington’s disease.[3] So that’s how we’re going to handle disease…terminate the mass of cells that just happen to be developing into a baby, just like we might cut out a cancer.

Look, it’s clear that I’m not a normal person when it comes to things like this. I’m a Fundamentalist when it comes to abortions. I love babies, though I’ve only fathered three of them myself. And though I am a Fundamentalist, I’m also very flawed. I’m sure everyone is a hypocrite about something, and I have played the role in my life too.

But this is tantamount to the Tower of Babel. We have decided to be gods. If a developing baby (we call it a fetus so that we don’t have to admit that it’s a baby) proves to have a genetic disease, we terminate (KILL) it. We have decided to take evolution into our own hands.

Alicia and I were very surprised to find out she was pregnant with our third child. We had decided long before to stop trying. At first, I was extremely hesitant to have another baby after our daughter was born with cystic fibrosis. I did not want more than one sufferer in our family. We had already dealt with one “tune up” and a minor CF-related surgery with Samantha. My heart couldn’t take another child with that. So I told Alicia I wasn’t going to have another child. We could adopt maybe someday, but that was it.

I came around at some point, but by then we had both gotten a little older and another child would change the dynamics of our family a lot. So even though I wasn’t as worried about the genetics anymore, we decided two children were enough.

Imagine my surprise then, when she told me we were going to have another child! We went in for our first meeting with her OBGYN and wouldn’t you know it, one of the first things we talked about was genetics. I don’t remember the exact conversation word for word, but here’s the gist:

Doctor: So I see you have cystic fibrosis in your family history.

Us: Yes. Our daughter has the disease.

Doctor: Do you want to test your baby for it?

Us: No thanks.

Doctor: It’s a relatively easy test.

Us: That isn’t the point.

Doctor: So I assume you’d keep the baby even if you found out it had CF?

Us: Yes.

Doctor: Ok, then we’ll approach this by checking via ultrasound as the baby develops to check for signs of CF so we’ll know how to handle the baby once he or she is born.

Us: That would be wonderful.

I’m not better than you, and this isn’t an attempt on my part to pretend to be better than you. The sins you struggle with are not the sins I struggle with and vice versa. But ending the life of a baby is not a sin I struggle with.

I am convinced that the vast majority of humans would not kill their newborn babies even if they found out immediately after birth that the child had a crippling disease. They just wouldn’t. So in order to combat that issue, humans kill the baby when it’s a fetus so they don’t have to admit that it was a baby. This is how modern evolution works.

We found out a few weeks after our youngest daughter, Hannah, was born that she carries the same mutation we do, but only from one of us (since we both carry the same cystic fibrosis mutation, we’ll probably never know which parent she got it from). She does not have cystic fibrosis, but she is a carrier. Theoretically, she, like her parents, are protected from tuberculosis, though I’m not going to put her in a position to test that theory.

I just don’t understand how researchers and writers can be so sterile when talking about abortions as if though they are the best way to handle genetic conditions like cystic fibrosis, Tay Sachs, sickle cell anemia, etc. Yet it’s true…staring me right in the face. The research proves it’s a tool being used in many parts of the world now.

This doesn’t mean that people who abort their babies are bad people any more than my sin makes me a bad person. Yet I do believe that it makes a person misguided and maybe shows a weakness on their part to look for the easy way out. Samantha has had three hospitalizations and two procedures since she has been born, all CF-related. And she has gotten off “easy” as it were. Many sufferers have gone through more.

Yet I wouldn’t have given her up for the world if we had known she was going to go through this. Instead, we work to find a cure by supporting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and raise awareness through talking to people about CF, my writing, etc.

To join our fight against cystic fibrosis, click HERE.

To stay up on the latest research on evolution and creation, click HERE.

[1] Scotet et al. Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases 2012, 7:14

[2] Kenneally, Christine. The Invisible History of the Human Race: How DNA and History Shape our Identities and our Futures. Viking Publishing Group, New York, NY. 2014. pg 300.

[3] Ibid – 293