Janice Boekhoff
 

Chickenasaurus?

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

For years, scientists have been trying to “prove” that dinosaurs evolved into birds by tinkering with the DNA of existing birds.

In May 2015, researchers announced they created the first chicken embryos with longer, flatter snouts, instead of beaks. The scientists say these snouts are a throwback to the evolutionary ancestor of birds, the dinosaurs, but are they really?

To create these embryos, researchers focused on two genes that control the development of the middle of the face in chickens. Now, I bet you’re thinking they modified these genes, but no, they didn’t. They used special molecules to suppress the activity of the proteins these genes produce. The resulting embryos had flatter snouts where the premaxillae (small bones of the upper jaw) were not fused like they are in bird beaks. The scientists referred to these embryos as the ancestral dinosaur state of the chicken.

Although the scientists did not allow the embryos to hatch, they have used the CT scans to claim that it would have been easy for evolution to change a dinosaur snout into a bird beak.

Easy? The scientists themselves admit they are not capable of genetically modifying an embryo into a dinosaur at this point. In fact, their easy method didn’t alter the genes of the chicken at all, just the proteins those genes produced.

Do these experiments really give us any information about evolution? All they tell us is that humans (as intelligent beings) can experimentally change through purposeful actions the complex workings of another creature. In this experiment, the scientists didn’t create anything. They were only able to change what was already there, and not even through random selective pressures, but by design.

What do you think? Can you make a Chickenasaurus in a lab? Would it really be a dinosaur?

 

Reference: http://www.foxnews.com/science/2015/05/13/chicken-embryos-with-dinosaur-snouts-created-in-lab/

Photo Credit: ID 20749999 © Mr1805 | Dreamstime.com

Where Did Our DNA Come From?

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Have you ever wondered about your DNA? Maybe you’ve even thought about getting a DNA test just to see what’s hanging out in your genes. Then again, maybe that’s just me.

But if you’re curious about where your DNA might have come from (other than your parents, I mean), I’ll tell you the real answer. Nobody knows.

Evolutionists say that a primitive form of RNA formed in a primordial soup of elements and then modified itself into DNA. This scenario is speculation because no one has ever seen it happen, even in a lab. But for arguments sake, let’s just say it’s possible the nucleotides that make up DNA formed that way. It still doesn’t explain how the information came to be inside our DNA.

For instance, if I see a rock with ancient pictographs on it, I can explain how the rock came to be by natural processes. The minerals crystallized in a specific shape according to their chemistry. But the pictographs are different. They contain information, which implies an intelligence to impart that information. Our DNA is the rock, but encoded within it are volumes of information, basically the recipe for a complete human being.

I recently attended an event where Dr. Charles Jackson spoke and he framed the problem is a creative way. He had us imagine that we were lying on our backs, gazing at the clouds in the sky when one passes by in the rough shape of an “H.” Most people would assume this was a chance occurrence and rightly so. But what if you then saw an “E,” “L,” and “P” following the first letter?

dreamstime_s_36109587Now, HELP is spelled in the clouds. Would you still believe that’s a chance pairing of the clouds or something more?

Most of us would think it’s something more because we recognize this as information and we know that it must come from some intelligent source. As Dr. Jackson continued, he sang the Beattles song “Help” and asked us to imagine that we saw all the lyrics up in the clouds. Would anyone believe that was a random event? Not likely.

So, what is the threshold for discerning when something is random or not. Scientists usually use numbers in the 1 out of 1080 range, but even this is hypothetical. In the 1980’s, two scientists, Sir Fred Hoyle (PhD, astronomy) and Chandra Wickramasinghe (professor of applied math and astronomy), calculated the probability of getting an amino acid to from into a protein randomly, which is something DNA accomplishes on a regular basis.  They determined this would happen 1 out of 10191 times. A number that is well beyond what scientists would accept as randomly possible.

Intuitively, this makes sense to us. As I said, DNA is a recipe for a human being. If we ran across an apple pie, we wouldn’t think it created itself by chance and an apple pie is much less complicated than a human being.

Information always implies an information giver. We have no example of information (like that contained in DNA) that arises without a language, idea, mind or intention. As Albert Einstein said it:

“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”

What if the reason we can’t solve the puzzle of our origins is because it’s outside of our consciousness? As in, outside of our sphere of comprehension.

Evolutionists say the appearance of designed information in DNA is only an illusion. What makes it an illusion? The fact that they believe God doesn’t exist.

But what if He does? Maybe DNA appears designed because it is.

What do you think? Is design an illusion? Where did the information come from?

 

Reference: https://answersingenesis.org/origin-of-life/can-natural-processes-explain-the-origin-of-life/

Photo Credit:DNA: ID 14506000 © Milan Martaus | Dreamstime.com

Photo Credit: Clouds: ID 36109587 © Hulv850627 | Dreamstime.com

Life comes from Life

dreamstime_s_32464791

Have you ever heard the term abiogenesis? It refers to the possibility of life coming from non-life. Not exactly like your iPad popping out eyeballs and asking for lunch, but similar.

In the 1800’s, people used to believe in abiogenesis (also known as spontaneous generation) mainly because of fruit flies. One minute their house was free of the little pests and the next they were swarming all over the fruit. The common wisdom was that fruit flies generated themselves spontaneously.

2551040609_f8a150b10f_sKind of crazy, I know, but people really believed this until Louis Pasteur completed his famous experiment in 1859 showing microorganisms existed and that some were airborne. He conclusively demonstrated that life comes from life, at the same time falsifying the idea of abiogenesis (life from non-life).

Every scientist today believes abiogenesis (this kind of spontaneous generation) is false … unless we’re taking about evolution. Even though, we’ve never seen an example of spontaneous generation, many people believe in it as the source of life because evolution demands it. Obviously, life had to come from somewhere. Either you believe a living creator breathed life into inanimate materials or you believe in abiogenesis—a principle proven false over a hundred years ago.

Is the idea of a living creator somehow more crazy than the idea of spontaneous generation? What do you believe?

 

Photo Credit: Cells: ID 32464791 © Michael Manzano | Dreamstime.com

Photo Credit: Louis Pasteur: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/25053835@N03/2551040609″>Portrait of Louis Pasteur (1822-1895), Chemist</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/commons/usage/”>(license)</a>

The Grand Designer

???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

If evolution is so grand a designer, I want to ask it a question. I want to know why I don’t have massive teeth like a T-Rex (I wouldn’t need steak knives any more) or why I can’t carry five times my body weight like an ant (that would really help with the laundry). But seriously, why didn’t humans get more advantages like the other animals?

If evolution is so grand a designer, why are species disappearing at an alarming rate? I find it hard to believe it’s all because of us, humans. Species have gone extinct for thousands of years (some would say millions) and was that always us?

If evolution is so grand a designer, why do I see the same old animals? Why aren’t any animals evolving extra appendages or new abilities? It’s not because all the animals are perfectly adapted to their niches. It that were true, we wouldn’t see much extinction of species at all.

If evolution is so grand a designer, why did it use random processes? Oh wait, if something is designed it’s not random. So, how could evolution design things at random? Isn’t that kind of like me throwing a bunch of Legos together in a bin and calling the parts that stick together randomly designed?

If evolution is so grand a designer, couldn’t God have used it? Yep, He could have, but He didn’t. How do I know? Because the Bible says He created us whole. Not little by little, but as whole functioning human beings.

Evolution is no grand designer. Why believe in a theory that has only assumptions with no evidence? And yet, scientists want to convince you, it’s true. Why?

Because it’s the only way to take God out of the design.

You are a masterfully built biological machine run by a dual core processor that’s out of this world, and hidden inside of you, like the special prize in a cereal box, is an eternal soul. How can we downgrade the miracle of one human being’s existence by calling it random?

There is nothing haphazard in your perfect, intricate body plan. You appear designed because God is your designer.

Photo Credit: © Dukepope | Dreamstime.com – Creation Of Adam Photo

Shocking Eel

small_1285873218

Have you always wanted an electric personality? People are attracted to others with energy, but somehow that hasn’t helped to make the electric eel more popular. Even so, God gave this animal what it needed to survive.

Electric eels are both electroreceptive and electrogenic in that they can detect electrical fields and generate them. An eel can hunt its prey undetected by measuring subtle changes in its own electrically generated field (electroreceptive). It then immobilizes the prey with a powerful electric shock (electrogenic).

Most of an eel’s body is made up of organs involved in making and storing the electrical charge. Using separate organs, it generates electricity from food by charging cells called electrocytes, in much the same way that muscles generate energy, and then stores it for later zapping of prey.

Just about everyone has the same questions about electric eels. How does the eel keep from electrocuting itself while it shocks its food?

Scientists aren’t exactly sure, but they have some theories. First, the eel’s brain is located far away from the electric-producing organs and is insulated with fatty tissue. The animal’s skin also seems to have insulating properties. Some scientists also think there might be an internal switching mechanism for the eel to turn off its own electricity during mating.

Are the complex electrical organs in this animal the result of random chance mutations? It’s hard for me to believe that mutations would have come about simultaneously to generate electricity, store it in a specialized organ and develop measures to protect the eel from shocking itself. For supposedly random mutations, that sounds pretty purposeful. When I look at the electric eel, I see a perfectly designed creature made by God, even if we don’t completely understand it.

What do you think? Is the electrical system of the eel evidence of design? Or did small mutations add up to one shocking creature?

 

 

Reference: Stratham, Dominic. “Stunning and Stealthy: the amazing electric eel.” Creation 36(1), 2014, p.29.

Photo Credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/table4five/1285873218/”>Elizabeth/Table4Five</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>

As Young as a Fossil?

small_15114114118

Most of us over forty would love to look younger than we are. Although being called a fossil certainly wouldn’t make me feel young, more and more studies are coming out with evidence that fossils are younger than we think. Dead creatures are being found that are still soft and still contain organic molecules, after supposedly millions of years have passed. These discoveries are hard to explain using a long-age view of earth’s history.

The most recent line of evidence for young fossils comes from worms. At Uppsala University in Sweden, researchers have found that the tube casings of the seabed worm Sabellidites cambriensis were still soft and flexible in rock which had been dated to 550 million years ago. The scientists say the organic compounds are original and the fossils show no evidence of mineralization. They further examined the worms and concluded the structure of the fossil worm tube is consistent with the tubes of modern seabed worms, like beard worms.

So, the worms are still soft and flexible and they look exactly like worms today, but we’re supposed to believe they are 550 million years old? Why? Because that’s how old they must be to get the long time scale needed for evolution to have happened.

Could even one million years go by without complete deterioration of these organic compounds? Much less 550 million years?

I find it hard to believe. How do the scientists themselves explain this supposedly incredible preservation?

They don’t. To them, it remains a mystery.

But if the rocks are much younger than millions of years, then there is no mystery. So, why not go with the simplest explanation?

At this point, you might be asking, why are researchers finding this stuff now and not thirty years ago?

The answer is two-fold: 1) researchers today have better equipment to test for these organic molecules, and 2) they are just now looking for them. To some extent, these discoveries could have been made thirty years ago, but scientists didn’t think this type of preservation was possible.

The sad truth is that you won’t find what you don’t seek.

What do you think? Is this unexplainable? How far would this kind of evidence go to convince you of the young age of fossils?

 

 

References: Catchpoole, David. “Seabed worm fossils still soft after 500 million years?” Creation 36(4), 2014, p. 22-23.

Photo Credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/jsjgeology/15114114118/”>jsj1771</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>

Join Boekhoff Books

Join ... or die!

Uh, just kidding, I only kill off the characters in my books (as far as you know).

So, no danger, just free books and fun stuff. And of course, I value your privacy and would never spam you.

You will receive updates on free and discounted books, an insider's look into my writing world, plus gift card giveaways. Enter your email below to receive your first FREE book!

 

Thank you for subscribing! Please look for an e-mail to confirm your subscription.