Bad science?

Could it be that scientists are playing the game of statistics when it comes to the number of papers published instead of the quality of their research? Is it likely that the more a system is inundated with information, whether obtained rigorously or sloppily, the entries will become too numerous to be properly examined and vetted? Does bad science happen to good scientists?

Unfortunately, yes. New research continues to demonstrate that the pressures of science academia may be causing some to act unethically, on the off-chance that they may get caught. The race to the printing press is often boosted by careless or biased peer review. Once published, some papers get scrutinized when the news press releases bold headlines, calling attention to certain claims, methods, assumptions or conclusions presented in said paper. In too few cases is there close inspection and attempts at reproducibility, followed by the realization that the study was flawed and that the interpretations are all wrong, creating a need for said paper to be retracted or at least revised. However, by that time the news headlines have already had their desired effect. There have been too many careers built up on nothing but sensationalism and bad science, all because of man’s innate inability to be content, fair and honest.

While this phenomenon may not be rampant yet, it is ever increasing in academia today. Just a couple weeks ago another research paper mill was exposed in Iran, highlighting yet again the temptation to use fraudulent research in order to secure grants, positions, and other bragging rights. The science community is becoming aware of this and there are some who have the unenviable task of keeping a record of the phony research and how many times it may have been cited as supporting “evidence” in other research papers. These can be seen here and I highly suggest the serious and concerned reader bookmark the website. One would be amazed how often faulty or fraudulent data can be found, if only looked for.

Why do some scientists do it?

The problem that we face is that the incentive system is focused almost entirely on getting research published, rather than on getting research right.

Real evaluation of scientific quality is as hard as doing the science in the first place.

With the wrong incentives you can make anyone behave unethically, and academia is no different.

These confessions alone should be enough for any rational, logical and honest scientist to not only question the so-called establishment, but to be skeptical to the degree that he or she should perhaps not cite or refer to any paper unless the reproducibility of the experiment has been tested and confirmed. No bad science should be cited as supporting evidence, and those papers that allude to them should be immediately suspect.

If the goal of science is to enlighten mankind and to truly discover novel, wonderful things about the natural world, then it must be performed with such dutiful, exhaustive and transparent methods as if the author’s very life depends on getting the assumption, data, interpretation and conclusions correct and beyond reproach. Unfortunately, we live in a world where greed and envy are rife and where no industry, nor any other undertaking of man is ever completely free from lies, fraud, corruption and avarice. For such is the condition of man.

Evolution flunks, again

Contrary to what one might hear from the geology and paleontology communities, the study of fossils is far from an exact science. Creationists have long touted the basic allegation that fossils are dated based on the geologic strata they are found in, while rocks are dated based on the fossils that they may contain. This is known as circular reasoning.

While the testing methods used to determine the unbelievably long ages of time are complex, they are based on assumptions of atmospheric conditions, quantities of various elements and other variables which cannot ever be corroborated or verified under real-world conditions of the distant past. Add to this the fact that the known samples of fossils represent perhaps 1% of the total fossils still in the ground all over the world and one can see how many problems a paleontologist faces when trying to sell his or her story of hundreds of millions of years of evolution.

Not even repeated plain, observable findings of soft tissues and genetic material, including protein residues, is sufficient to shake their belief in the long eons of time they have come to profess as “fact”, even though it has been repeatedly demonstrated that organic matter such as soft tissues and genetic material cannot possibly resist degradation even under ideal conditions for hundreds of thousands of years, let alone hundreds of millions.

Their blind faith notwithstanding, this week a paper was published detailing how the basic assumptions in most of the research that has been done over the last decade is more than likely wrong in its conclusions, and the roughly 150 papers published on the subject would likely fail the test. The researchers remark:

The core assumption is that any portion of fossil diversity that can be explained by variations in rock volume should be explained by variations in rock volume. This assumption is based on no evidence. At the extreme, if you have no rock you get no fossils. However, there are many cases where two time intervals are represented by the same amount of rock worldwide, and yet fossil diversity varies massively. Explain that.

Indeed.

Further proof that paleontology and geology are full of holes and assumptions which generate faulty conclusions and leads to the entire field going astray while singing the same tune. This apparently faulty method,

assumes that variations in the number of different fossils at any given time are a reflection of how much rock was available. It has been used in more than 150 published research papers since it was first used in 2007.

By using the corrected test method for the interpretation of the data,

the researchers ran thousands of simulations to test the data correction method, but found it failed to return correct results in as much as 100% of the simulated cases.”

If I were a paleontologist or a geologist, these findings would put me between a rock and a hard place.

 

Unknown unknowns

As former U.S. defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld once aptly stated:

There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns – the ones we don’t know we don’t know.

These statements bear true in many instances where the intelligence and ingenuity of man has revealed some, but not all, of the facts or only observations about a given subject. One such instance is astronomy, another is physics. Scientists have been gazing at the stars above with evermore powerful and sophisticated equipment, both on land and out in Earth orbit. We spend countless hours theorizing on the standard cosmological model and the standard model of physics, without realizing that there will always be events and anomalies that are not explainable using the current models and assumptions. Even more important, there will continue to be observations that defy the accepted models and perhaps overturn them due to the growing body of evidence against an established paradigm.

One such possibility is in the case of the currently accepted “accelerating expansion of the universe,” which is now widely accepted and was proposed by Einstein in his works of general relativity. This official “discovery” was apparently made about 25 years ago but only recently was awarded the Nobel prize in physics, further entrenching its authority and influence over the topic of astrophysics. As a result of this, new theories emerged that proposed dark matter and dark energy, which are the supposed counterparts to observable matter (galaxies, stars, planets, moons, comets, asteroids, people, plants, microbes, etc.) and observable, measurable energy (atomic, ultraviolet, etc.).

Since then, the hunt has been on for the discovery of dark energy and dark matter, which would be proof that the theories borne out of the ever-accelerating universal expansion theory are correct and that by default, the universe is indeed expanding. The amount of research funds going into these projects is astounding.  Yet, with all evidence to the contrary, most scientists remain convinced that an unseen form of matter exists.  Isn’t it interesting how empirically-driven, proof-searching intelligent being continue to believe something that has not been (and possibly cannot be) detected, even using such sensitive instruments that they could detect a sneezing ant located 5 miles underground.

It seems, though, that the wheel of “scientific progress” has had some sticks stuck in its spokes. Several studies are contradicting the accelerating universal expansion idea and some are even contradicting its expansion at all, proposing that it is the lack of sufficient data and/or incorrect interpretation of existing data with respect to the redshift of light given off by distant stars or galaxies.  One researcher proposes:

…it is quite possible that we are being misled and that the apparent manifestation of dark energy is a consequence of analyzing the data in an oversimplified theoretical model – one that was in fact constructed in the 1930s, long before there was any real data. A more sophisticated theoretical framework accounting for the observation that the universe is not exactly homogeneous and that its matter content may not behave as an ideal gas – two key assumptions of standard cosmology – may well be able to account for all observations without requiring dark energy.

The implications here are enormous. The fact that we are constantly gathering new data but keep forcing it through antiquated models (Darwinism, anyone?) is not helping to advance neither our understanding of the universe, nor improving the future education of hopeful physicists and astronomers who cannot be allowed to think outside the “Big Bang” box. Instead, it stifles growth and new discoveries and causes any critics who voice doubt about the validity of these models to be discredited or disregarded. The problems are not going away though; the data keeps piling up and keeps causing problems for the models that materialists have worked so hard to prop up.

In another study, scientists were able to show the deficiencies of the assumptions of redshift when applied to universal expansion. They discovered:

Contrary to the prediction of the Big Bang theory, the surface brightnesses of the near and far galaxies are identical. These results are consistent with what would be expected from ordinary geometry if the Universe was not expanding, and are in contradiction with the drastic dimming of surface brightness predicted by the expanding Universe hypothesis.

The researchers hypothesize that the redshift of light is possibly caused by other phenomena not currently observed, but perhaps may be discovered in the near future. The point here is that even the astronomy and physics communities are at odds as to what exactly we are observing in the vast sky above our heads. There is no universal consensus on the subject and it is still far from even being a “known unknown”, but still presented and taught as FACTS in most science textbooks.

Then we get into the “unknown unknowns”. Planet 9 is a good example of this, since we have not located it and cannot be sure it is even a planet. What if it’s a smaller black hole? It may be many more years before we find out more. Another example is vacuum energy, or “zero-point energy”, which is the type of energy some assume aliens use. No kidding, there are scientists who would rather believe in aliens than in an all-powerful Being (ie, God) and that they are waiting for us to develop higher as a species before making contact. Their excitement is tempered by some skepticism, which is hopeful, but it does seem they wish it to be true and that it won’t be long until we make contact. Interesting reading here.

In all our endeavors, mankind has always looked up at the sky and wondered what it would be like to get there. We built hot-air balloons, Hydrogen-filled blimps (oops, let’s go with Helium instead), propeller planes, jet turbine planes, liquid and solid oxygen booster rockets, all of which have progressively taken us higher and farther into space. We have flown higher and faster with every decade in the last century. We have sent probes to the edge of known solar system that are still sending back data 40 years later. Our fascination with the stars above is not because we are made of “star dust”, as Carl Sagan poetically waxed; it is because man was made a little lower than angels, who travel to and from heaven and because the God of heaven instilled in us a longing of being with Him, whether we admit it or not. And so we search, albeit misguided and misled. The God of the universe invites man to seek and if we seek with all our hearts, we will find Him. Not with telescopes and particle accelerators, but with humble hearts and inquisitive minds growing in faith and in service to our fellow man, day by day.

Walk like a man

A new article deals with revisions to the oft misquoted history of the human species. What is particularly interesting in this latest draft (always subject to change) is that the footprints found around this volcano in Tanzania, named ‘Mountain of God’ are not as old as once thought.

Originally, the scientists thought the mud was formed directly from an ash cloud, which would date the prints at around 120,000 years old.

In fact, that age has been wrongly estimated as off by as much as a factor of ten. The latest figure puts the footsteps anywhere from 5,800 – 19,100 years; still a large gap of uncertainty but on the whole, averages out to 12,400 years (hence the factor of 10 revision).

What prompted this revision of clearly egregious assumptions?

Now, the hypothesis is that the ash was carried down by water, which means the footprints probably aren’t quite so ancient.

These footprints were laid down around the time that a volcanic eruption took place, which lead to an ash cloud being deposited around the base of the volcano. The article mentions that many of the footsteps indicate a hurried departure, complete with confusion and frenzy that led to many footsteps in all directions. This implies an agitation which would be expected if the volcano had suddenly roared to life and people were trying to escape for their lives.

Be that as it may, water is seen as the critical factor in that it turned the ash into mud, which allowed the footsteps to be recorded. Once the mud dried out, only the footsteps and some seashells remained as a testament to the sudden destruction and chaos that took place. Exactly how the seashell remnants made their appearance that far inland was not explained. I could interpret it as fitting a flood scenario, which is plausible but we’ve already covered that topic in previous discussions.

I find it somewhat ironic that a serious geologist should have an emotional experience upon visiting the site, since emotions and feelings cannot be scientifically quantified or explained. It would seem that, in search of Origins, some scientists rely on less-than-scientific means in order to create a narrative that fits their worldview. According to one researcher:

The first time we went out there, I remember getting out of the vehicle, and I teared up a little bit… Human origins is a huge interest of mine: where we came from, and why we are who we are. It was definitely emotional to see our own history in this.

Tears and emotion notwithstanding, it should be noted that the age estimates were revised not necessarily based on new evidence, such as the physical rock samples that had once been mud, but rather on a new interpretation and study of the data and based on a new scenario that had not been previously considered. In their previous work presented in 2011 there were no issues with the stated age estimates of 120,000 years. They were considered accurate based on the geochronology tests they employed. What was different now is that they have identified the youngest crystals to date in the existing rock sample. From finding the site in 2008 to this latest publication it has been 8 years. That is quite some time to be wrong, and not just wrong but off by a factor of ten.

Now, we could speculate that there might be even younger crystals to be found in the rock sample, since they are tiny but abundant. Even if not, and we just accept that based on their geologic radiometric tests, the ages of those footsteps are ten times younger than previously believed, it is yet another validation of my assertion that radiometric dating methods are subjectively used to support long ages of geologic time. The narrative lays down the expectation and the data is twisted or tortured to support that narrative. For some reason, in this instance a revision had to be made and possibly more may be necessary. However, we can only wonder how many other findings would require revision and correction by a factor of ten or more, upon closer inspection and considering alternate scenarios.

For more information see:

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031018216305090
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/10/ancient-human-footprints-africa-volcano-science/
http://www.sciencealert.com/these-amazingly-preserved-footprints-were-left-19-000-years-ago
https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/fossil-footprints-of-early-modern-humans-found-in-tanzania/

Plants evolved or were intelligently created?

Among the first stories that students in college introductory Biology classes are taught is the supposed story of how plants appeared on planet Earth. It is repeated often enough that most people are now able to quote it with a glazed look in their eyes and their minds effectively turned off. The short version goes something like this: a long, long time ago for reasons unclear and without any purpose, some bacterium evolved to survive in water, became algae and other water-based plants rooted in watery soil, which then slowly crept up out of the water for reasons unexplained.

Exactly how a immobile plant with roots in the ground decides to “get up and move” is not explained, nor questioned. Maybe the water they were in simply evaporated or otherwise dried out, leaving the plant on dry land. Whatever ad hoc rescue device one chooses to employ, the idea is that plants began to colonize dry land and over several hundred millions of years have evolved into tens of thousands of distinct families, each with countless individual species that are specific to the region they are found in.

Eventually, students that are genuinely interested in the biology of plants will sign up for more advanced classes that include plant anatomy, physiology, molecular and cellular development, morphology, ecology, genetics and genomics, and many other detailed disciplines about plant life. In these classes there is much more emphasis placed on the known information about plants, including their reproduction mechanisms and roles in overall ecology of the planet. However, as the paper above explains, it is amazing how little scientists actually know about plants. They remain “a mystery”.

So how appropriate is it, then, to keep repeating the same mantra that evolutionists profess – which has not been proven to work in any laboratory– to explain the complexity and diversity of plants on earth? For example, why do plants have several complete genomes? Humans have 46 chromosomes. Why do some plants have 1260? How can we identify which set of genomic data is being expressed? Obviously not all of a plant’s DNA is expressed at the same time, so why would plants keep two or three sets of DNA around for hundreds of millions of years? Or, to pose the question differently, if animals and humans are supposedly derived from plants, why don’t humans have additional sets of genomes? Was it not advantageous to our evolution to keep a spare genome or three? If not, why do plants still have them? Do we not share the same environment?

In addition to complete sets of genomes, plants also contain millions of fragments of other DNA from viruses as well as bacteria. These are thought to help play a role in plants’ ability to fight off invaders or disease. One would think that with the addition of a few extra genomes on hand, at least one of them would also contain genetic information to produce proteins for the plant’s defense, therefore it wouldn’t need fragments of DNA from other organisms.

Plants are amazingly complex, unbelievably resilient and yet they are fragile at the same time. Without light, they die. Without water, eventually they die. If their environment changes suddenly, they die. And yet they resist weed killers, they fight off bacterial and viral infections, and they repeatedly spring up through iron and concrete. They are masters of efficiency and chemical transformation. They absorb sunlight and create their own food. They take up carbon dioxide and release oxygen back into the air. Without plants, there would be no animal life and no human life. We cannot imagine a world without plants; without trees, grass, flowers, fruits, veggies, and legumes. Taking into account how little we admittedly know about bacterial life and plant life, how can mainstream Science contend so arrogantly that evolution is the only answer? The fact that we can alter a plant’s biology by gene editing or hybridization is not evidence for evolution. What little we know stirs in us amazement and awe, yet the only explanation offered is “evolution did it”, stuff happens. As Dr. Zhu concluded:

I continue to be amazed at how ‘smart’ and advanced these immobile organisms can be. A few billion years of evolution really resulted in things we can’t intuitively imagine.

I continue to be amazed at our willful blindness of the obvious: nature continues to speak of its intelligent Creator, it is man who has turned deaf.

http://phys.org/news/2016-10-harsh-conditions-major.html

The Flood (final part)

As for mankind’s diversification, this is a more involved process because people are more complicated than animals. I realize that is an assumption, but made rightly so, since we are the species in control of most affairs on this planet. We were made to rule the earth and we are certainly doing so today, to the point where we are exhausting and abusing it due to our selfish tendencies and greed. That’s a topic for another day however. What cannot be denied is that, regardless of how many varieties or cultures of people there are on this planet, we all share the same DNA, at more than 99.9% similarity. This is evidence that we are all, indeed, related and likely come from the same original family line, namely that of Noah and his descendants. I believe that in 4746 years roughly and 120 generations on average, mankind has had ample time to diversify into the current sample of people today; from Asian to Nordic, from Native American to the white man, from Middle Eastern to Slavs, we have adapted to the regions of the earth that we occupy today which includes the varieties of crops, domesticated animals, and other natural resources that work together with the climate and surrounding environment to shape our lives and features.

This is no small feat of nature and nurture; this is rapid change and adaptation which flies in the face of all currently accepted evolutionary tales of the slow and gradual evolution of man from primitive knuckle-dragging apes to modern man. The only reason for this slow, gradual development is the assumed millions of years of required human evolution, which has to be taken together with the geologic landscape of long ages. Yet, mankind has shown amazing adaptability and genetic flexibility within several generations which should not surprise us. It does not require millions of years to achieve, just like oil and coal deposits. It only requires sufficient pressures and environmental conditions. I am not suggesting a Lamarckian viewpoint as to what created the slanted-eye Asians, the blond and blue-eyed Nordics or the black Africans; but I am certainly stating my opinion and belief that the differences in these cultures’ diets, what they experience in terms of temperature and exposure to the elements, the demands that their environment placed on them regarding agriculture and herding, and what their offspring are capable of expressing genetically after numerous generations of living isolated, for the most part, is what contributes to their distinct differences in appearance. And yet, on a genetic level, we are all still more than 99.9% similar. We all express one of the four blood types; there is no fifth.

Our biological systems work in exactly the same way. Organ donors and accepters can be from opposite corners of the world, provided a few serological parameters align. We all desire mostly the same things in life: food, safety, freedom, health, being part of a family or community, happiness, and others. To an extent we all acknowledge a void in our souls that cannot be filled except outside of ourselves. Whether that is in the search for God, or SETI, or universal enlightenment, or nirvana, call it what you will, there is always a search for “something else” that most of us have not quite yet identified. Yet we are searching all the same, just possibly not in the right place. Life gives us ample opportunities to find what we are looking for, if we are open to it and accept it when we come face to face with it: that we are not our own, that we were bought with a price because we were created in the image of God. Our destiny was not to die on this earth, but to live forever as God’s creatures in a perfect world, exercising free will and willfully obeying His principles for a perfect happy life, which is to love God with all our heart, mind, power and soul and our neighbors as ourselves.

People are at their best when acting in the service of others, just as Christ set the example for us. No honest person is truly happy just living for their own interests. This is a common theme in humans, where hospitality and self-sacrifice are unexplainable in terms of evolutionary advantages. Morality and free will cannot be explained by evolutionary principles. The fact that all cultures share a version of a worldwide cataclysmic destruction of the world by water is no coincidence; it was a true story and one which was taken to the ends of the earth by mankind and survives to this day, even if the details are sometimes murky. The fact that all cultures share a belief in supernatural powers, both benevolent and malevolent, are clear indicators that man has indeed learned and experienced both good and evil. These are not cultural crutches nor delusions devised by man to fill a certain void in their understanding. This explanation by today’s intelligentsia is shameful in its conceit for common man, as well as in denying man’s divine origins, supplanting it with Self as the center of all that matters. This was Lucifer’s problem too. Through the literal event of a global flood, God gave humanity another chance to live long enough for the Seed of Eve to come, who would save man from sin by taking upon Himself the death penalty that we all deserve and instead impart to us His perfect life and to provide redemption back into the Father’s household. Those who choose not to accept these truths that all humanity attests to are doing themselves and others a terrible disservice. God graciously grants us time to search for Him, and we will find Him, if we search for Him with all our hearts.

The End

The Flood (part 5)

We have previously identified that roughly 4746 years have passed since the Flood. For most of us, this is still quite an incomprehensible number, given that the longest anyone has lived since then is about 120 years. Most of us live into our 80s or 90s at most. During that time, the human body undergoes a myriad of degenerative changes, both structurally and at the genetic level. We lose height, strength, body mass and density, our chromosomes become degraded especially at their ends (the telomeres) and generally, the various body organ systems become less capable of regeneration and carrying out the vital tasks that keep us alive. This is in a best case scenario, where there is no sickness or cancer involved. In those instances, lives can be cut short even in childhood. The point is that humans don’t live very long, yet experience much in our short time on earth, and we are the products of both nature and nurture. Our genes are constantly being mixed (hopefully) which confers on some people beneficial traits such as increased resiliency in the immune system, athleticism, photographic memory and others.

Since the environment was drastically changed after the Flood, including available food sources, weather patterns and population displacement after the Babel incident, mankind also began to diversify. First came the different languages and dialects, which led to the grouping of people into camps that could understand each other. They set out in various directions out of Mesopotamia, taking with them animals that were domesticated as well as various tools, materials and supplies they had gathered in the several generations immediately following the Flood. They also took with them the knowledge of building and craftsmanship, including ships and buildings, and more importantly, they took with them the oral tradition of the Flood story. In this manner, they built ships and sailed out from the Middle East through the Mediterranean Sea, along the coast of Africa and west towards North and South America, as well as east and towards Asia. There is abundant evidence that the western coast of North America was settled by ocean-sailing people and not Eskimo nomads. The same is true of the northeastern coast that revealed Viking settlements, along with remains of sailing vessels, long before Christopher Columbus “discovered” the New World. Many more people traveled by ground, spreading in all directions until they had dispersed into modern-day Europe, including the islands of Britain and Scotland, and also east into Russia and China. Some would then set sail for the continent of Australia. In all cases, people that could understand each other traveled to a certain part of the world that would become their own, where they would raise certain crops and have access to specific natural resources and where their offspring would adapt to the environment around them.

The animals they took with them also adapted to their surroundings and eventually became sub-species of the original kinds that had been preserved on the Ark. Notice, I said they are the same kind, just different sub-species. That means they are in essence the same as the original kind, but merely adapted to the different environments. This is not evidence for evolution, rather adaptation that is a trait afforded by the genetic flexibility inherent in each original kind. An example of sub-species that are really still the same animal is the giraffe. Scientists have so far identified 4 different sub-species of giraffe, yet biologically they are all giraffes and if needed to, would be able to procreate. Another example is the elephant, of which there are at least a dozen different sub-species. The main difference between them is their location or environment. From a biology point of view, these different sub-species would be able to procreate and are in essence the same “kind”.

There are many other kinds of animals that we could discuss, for example the bear. While there are several variety of bears, they are biologically the same and would be able to procreate. The reason for their variety is their environment and how they adapted to it. Polar bears adapted to the frozen regions of the poles, their preference for cold weather, or their white fur made possible by an expression of the genes that control internal temperature or the color of hair follicles, for example. These were not adaptations made necessary for survival or for increased fitness, rather as a consequence of the cold temperature and lower sunlight exposure that eventually turned off the genes for determining what their internal homeostasis temperature was prior or what color their fur would be (black, brown, gray, etc.). As traits are heritable, they were passed on to offspring down through the generations. The implication here, and one that I subscribe to, is that polar bears would not necessarily go extinct if their natural frozen environment were to thaw and grow green. I believe they would adapt to their new surroundings and different genetic features would be expressed while others would be turned off. Perhaps they would go back to being brown or black or some other color. The only real threat to their existence is humans hunting them or the lack of food. While their preferred food source is young seal pups, if the environment turned green and different plants or berries sprouted up, there would be no shortage of food for them. Some may perish, but others would adapt to the new environment and the species would survive. Of course, if the world should last another thousand years and polar bears become brown or black, surely mankind would create yet another classification to assign them to the category we think they fit into. But this is the whole point of classification: it is merely a human endeavor that is imperfect and does not appropriately reflect the mixture and flexibility of nature. I believe we have much to learn in this regard.

End of Part 5

For additional info see:

http://phys.org/news/2016-10-technique-glimpse-human-evolution-action.html
http://phys.org/news/2016-10-ancient-britons-teeth-reveal-people.html
http://en.prothom-alo.com/science-technology/news/123783/Pacific-islanders-descended-from-Asians-study
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/03/160331-viking-discovery-north-america-canada-archaeology/
http://westerndigs.org/11000-year-old-seafaring-indian-sites-discovered-on-california-island/
https://www.sciencerecorder.com/news/2016/10/06/human-lifespan-limited-115-years-new-study-says/

The Flood (part 4)

In total, from the time Noah entered the ark and the Flood suddenly burst forth, to the time that the waters receded and Noah came out safely from the Ark, a period of one year and one month of time is recorded as having passed. This would make the Flood the single largest cataclysmic event in Biblical history, since it resulted in the death of all land animals as well as most marine life, with the exception of those in the Ark. That the earth has been repopulated by man, plant, and animal life in such a seemingly short span of time should not be an issue. A human generation comes about every 40 years or so; Bible scholars put the time estimate for the Flood at around 2730 BC, which when added to the current year we find ourselves in (2016 at the time of this writing), is 4,746 years. That is roughly 120 human generations, including Noah, since the Biblical Flood to present day. For other life forms’ gestation requirements, this calculation results in far greater multiplication of sub-species from their original kinds.

If some people think not much could have changed in “only” 120 generations, consider how drastically the world has changed in only the last 3 generations: 2 world wars, countless millions of people killed, superpowers on the global stage, the atomic age, the space race and current age, the age of the Internet, the Human Genome Project and other genetics breakthroughs, the landing on and exploration of Mars, as well as the European Space Agency’s landing on a comet and most recently, NASA’s mission to land on an asteroid and bring back a sample. We have increased medical knowledge to levels not dreamed of 100 years ago. We have also lent a hand in creating superbugs, bacteria that are seemingly impervious to almost all antibiotics. We went from steam power to electric power to electromagnetic power to atomic power to hydrogen cells. We built cars that used to burn shameful amounts of fuel in overly large engines to produce anemic levels of power, to now burn precisely pulsed and atomized vapors of fuel in small, lightweight engines that produce hundreds of horsepower. We are now perfecting electric vehicles and solar vehicles. We have tied up the globe with enough cabling to reach to the Moon and back, and as if that weren’t enough, we’ve sent up countless satellites to constantly bounce TV, radio, cellular communications, GPS, military tracking and weather prognosis information all around the planet.

Science can achieve much when talented people are engaged for a greater, unwavering ideal and can repeatedly improve processes and materials by observable and testable hypotheses that are based on trial in real life. This is true science. However, speculating on what might have happened in the distant past and dogmatically sticking to a worldview of billions of years merely for the sake of defending some men’s willful ignorance (Yes, you, Mr. Darwin, Mr. Sagan, Mr. Dawkins, The Science Guy and others) becomes more philosophy of science rather than testable, reproducible, observable methods of analysis in the laboratory or in nature. One might be able to argue in philosophy but one cannot force theories to be accepted without question; they must stand on their own against skepticism, logic, other likely explanations and by letting the evidence speak for itself without a biased worldview. If mainstream Science has the right to use terms such as “could have, may have, possibly, might, puzzling, mysterious, surprising, unexpected,” and the like as proof for evolution, then why should Creationists not employ the same right in presenting an alternative scenario for life’s origins based on their faith? If all life is accidental and everything is relative, then our views on how it all started are just as valid as theirs. Moreover, our scenario does not even require that much faith; it takes a lot more faith to believe that life spontaneously arose over billions of years, completely by chance and blind luck (but what caused the Big Bang?). The odds are astronomically and overwhelmingly against such an occurrence, yet they gloss over the unexplainable details and explain it all way using processes that are unproven.

This is why I don’t believe Christians should be “apologetic”, and even more so, that the term itself is a misnomer and does not apply. We make no apologies for using logic, rationality, the laws of probability, the crucibles of reproducibility and falsification to unequivocally deny that the theory of evolution is “the best there is”. When scientific inquiry is performed in a right manner, the results can be a powerful testimony and evidence for an intelligence beyond our own, leading to a personal discovery of the Architect of this universe and everything it contains. In fact, for an honest and hard-working scientist who is actually looking for the truth, there can be no other result. Next, we will continue the discussion of diversification of life after the Flood.

End of Part 4

The Flood (part 3)

What eventually happened to all that water? In the Flood account God brings a strong wind to eventually dry up the waters, and the Ark soon came safely to rest atop the mountains of Ararat, in what is assumed to be present-day Turkey. Efforts continue to search for evidence of a wooden craft that may or may not be locked in that vast snow-covered mountainous area, most recently using ground radar and satellite imagery. Be that as it may, I believe that both giant polar ice caps and an ensuing so-called Ice Age are products of that wind that God sent to drive away the flood waters. The polar ice caps are more than several miles thick at their thickest points and extend for hundreds of miles. At their edges are glaciers which can be seen slowly retreating towards both poles respectively. We are constantly drilling core samples to bring back for analysis, wherein we find many layers of organic debris and evidence of climate change. Mainstream science interprets these findings as proof of ancient life evolved throughout hundreds of millions of years, yet these are assumptions based on a naturalistic worldview.

Using a Biblical worldview, I argue that whatever organic debris we find has been embedded and frozen by the wind that God sent to dry up the land and the extreme latitudes that this water gathered up in, covered by more snow and ice accumulated since the Flood. The effects we interpret as from climate change could very well have been the result of the entire atmosphere being drastically altered once the vast stores of water in the atmosphere were spilled. The polar regions are not cold because they have extensive ice fields; they have extensive ice fields because they are cold! The sun does not warm the ground or air enough to keep water in liquid form, hence the gigantic shelves of polar ice. Also worth mentioning here is that the polar regions are even more extreme in terms of temperature due to the polar jet streams and the axial tilt of the earth. Scientists agree that earth’s axial tilt is not stationary, but that it wobbles due to the earth’s centrifugal motion, wave and tidal action caused by the moon’s effect on the large bodies of oceanic water, the supposed spinning of the innermost core of the earth and the earth’s elliptical orbit around the sun. They also agree that in some of the many assumed catastrophic extinction level events, the earth’s axis was directly affected likely as a result of meteor impacts. I would submit that the physical effects of a global Flood could have significantly affected the tilt of the earth’s axis, since the entire crustal surface of the earth was likely broken apart and partly liquefied when the vast underground water fountains broke loose. A sudden pole shift also cannot be ruled out. Scientists say there is evidence for this, even if I cautiously lean towards accepting that view. If only the visual images of the movie 2012 were anything close to what may have happened during the Flood, it is a plausible scenario that, with all the crustal liquefaction and upheaval, the poles may have been violently reversed as well. In any case, the destruction was total and worldwide, with the exception of the Ark and its contents.

So then, much of the flood waters were eventually blown towards the polar regions by what we today call in general terms the “jet stream”, where they became frozen wastelands, complete with glaciers that carved some of today’s existing lakes, trapping and freezing whatever organic matter had been carried by the water. The rest of that water became what is today our current oceans. That we are now beginning to see these polar regions melt and glaciers retreat year by year should not surprise us; all that water does not belong there. With the climate undergoing warming and cooling trends, along with increased CO2 emissions and the greenhouse gas effect, we are speeding up the melting of those ice shelves. Since the topic of climate change has arisen here, let me just say that while I do not subscribe to the EPA’s (Environmental Protection Agency) or the U.N.’s (United Nations) hype regarding passenger or even heavy-hauling transport emissions, I do believe that since the Industrial Revolution mankind has been gradually contributing to the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. It is accelerated by the swift deforestation of one of the world’s largest lungs, the Amazon rain forest. There is also criminal deforestation on the African continent, the islands of the Pacific and here in North America. And no, the trees we plant do not replace those we cut, because we only plant them to chop them down sooner next time. The largest carbon sink remains the ocean waters on earth, yet how long they will continue to stem the tide (pardon the pun) we can only speculate.

On to the rainbow and the end of the Flood. The simplest explanation for the rainbow is that God used the naturally-occurring phenomenon caused by all the water vapor in the air and made it a sign between Himself and Noah and his descendants, that they were not only to continue retelling the story of the Flood throughout succeeding generations, but that they should also remember that God spared mankind and promised that He would not destroy the whole earth by flood waters ever again. What is important to note about the rainbow sign is that mankind had not seen this effect in the sky before, since before the Flood there was no rain to water the earth, as described earlier. Consequently, for Noah and his family to see this giant colorful banner in the sky after they survived what was arguably their most harrowing life experience yet, the memory of that sign would not soon be forgotten even if it were seen only once. Instead, it can be seen reliably before, during, and after rainstorms, and should be interpreted as a reminder of God’s mercy and promise to sustain life on earth.

End of Part 3

For more information, visit:

http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/education/pd/climate/factsheets/whatcause.pdf

http://nsidc.org/cryosphere/glaciers/gallery/retreating.html

https://www.aip.org/history/climate/cycles.htm

http://www.universetoday.com/47176/earths-axis/

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/jetstream/global/jet.html

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/what-causes-the-high-spee/

http://www.space.com/26318-noah-ark-search-satellite-images.html

The Flood (part 2)

Let’s begin with the rain and where all the water came from. In the Bible account, there is no mention of rain at any time until the Flood. It is explained that earth was refreshed by dew and by underground springs that God created during the Creation week (another topic I will attempt to discuss at some point), along with the rivers and waters that He created. Even today, the largest aquifers and reservoirs of water are still found underground. While not referred to in the Bible account, I do not believe that the planet was covered by oceans as it is today; I believe the dry land was gathered together in one place, as were the seas, and as explained in the Creation account. Similarly, when God separated the waters above from the waters below to create the expanse of sky the result was that God controls the windows of heaven and they could be opened together with the deep fountains of water beneath the earth which would have caused the entire planet to become flooded as described.

There had to have been titanic physical forces associated with the Flood event, but as it was a supernatural event, a real act of God, I believe that no natural laws could explain or contain it. Natural laws are man’s construct, in the sense that we observe things and try to express them mathematically or logically in order to understand them, and to hopefully predict things like the weather or the half-life of a radioactive isotope. What is important to realize is that all natural laws are based on assumptions and limited observations, and on values that cannot be tested under the same conditions of the distant past because NO ONE can access or recreate the distant pass in order to test them. Natural laws are simply our best guesses, based on convention and accepted values, averages and the concept of uniformity in the universe. But since God is not subject to time nor to natural laws, He can act outside of them and I believe He has done so many times throughout history.

The waters below broke through the earth’s crust and spouted upwards while the windows of heaven were opened and the waters fell from above. This was not a gentle summer rain nor a gradually rising flood that could be navigated or survived by holding on to tree branches or other floating materials. This was a sudden, overwhelming and cataclysmic global event, much like a tsunami wave that rolled out in all directions at once. The earth’s crust likely gave way to liquefaction, leading to mudslides that are unimaginable today. Entire plains and meadows were suddenly turned to raging mud flows, complete with debris of rocks, trees, and animal and human remains. This proceeded for 40 days and nights while Noah in the Ark was tossed on the waves, preserved not by his excellent craftsmanship, but by God’s hand alone. Outside the Ark, villages and towns were razed off the surface of the earth, plant life was uprooted and churned into pulp, and animal life perished both on land and in the seas. Many fossil remains have been found of dinosaurs all having died together in large groups. Some died with food in their stomachs, while others were caught unawares sitting on their nest of eggs.

Creatures in the seas perished as well, but not to the extent that their counterparts did on land. There have been reports by sailors since the middle ages of encountering giant creatures in the seas they navigated. Even today creatures such as giant squid and others can be encountered which may have survived the Flood waters. They are isolated in various parts of the world’s oceans and have been known to live at great depths below the surface. However, for the most part, the world’s scientists agree that close to 80% of marine life was destroyed in a climactic event in the distant past. Their fossils can be found in large marine graveyards off the coast of Chile, Greenland and other places. Interestingly, many whale and other marine fossils have been found in what are today deserts, which is evidence that at some point in time these areas were submerged and hosted many kinds of marine life that suddenly perished.

Could the waters have reached even the highest mountains? The Bible says that the waters rose 15 cubits above the tallest mountain. In feet, that is roughly 22 feet. I do not mean to imply that the Flood waters rose 22 feet above Mt. Everest, because I do not believe there was a Mt. Everest before the Flood. I believe there were hills and valleys, rivers and lakes, but not the oxygen-deprived knife-edge massifs and glaciers that we see today when looking at the Alps, the Himalayas, the Rockies and so on. Even geologists agree that these mountains are young by comparison to other geologic features. Exactly how young becomes an issue, but only because they insist on the billions of years scenario, as they must, and on a gradual uniform rising due to tectonic plate collision and friction. All the same, the tallest hills or mountains of the time were covered by more than 7 meters of flood water.

During this violent time many animals were quickly killed and their skeletal remains were fossilized and deposited in the various depths and layers of muddy sediment, driven about by winds, tidal wave action and the constant churning and heaving of the planet’s liquefied crust. It should be noted here that, to date, no verifiable explanation has been put forth and accepted as being capable of preserving soft-tissue remains that have been found within dinosaur fossils. It is a commonly accepted fact that soft tissue such as blood vessels and genetic material, including proteins, cannot be preserved intact for long. I have studied the claims of iron acting as a preservative, but it is wholly incapable of preserving soft tissue for tens of millions of years that otherwise would be degraded in several thousand. The fact is that science cannot explain it, while there are many that continue to doubt its existence and choose to ignore it altogether.

Most of the organic matter not fossilized in the geologic strata sunk deeper and became trapped in much lower layers of the earth’s crust which have formed the natural gas, oil and coal fields we have only discovered a mere few hundred years ago. A seeming problem Creationists need to account for is that the lower strata contain simple life form fossils while the upper strata contain much more complex and larger animal fossils. One reason for this could be that creatures such as shellfish and other arthropod crustaceans could not swim, therefore were buried where they stood effectively, while larger animals capable of swimming and/or floating did their best to tread water or stay afloat by other means, only to succumb to the ever-rising and raging Flood waters. There are, however, entire layers of closed clam shells that can be found above 20,000 feet, in the Himalayas, the Andes and other mountain ranges, indicating that they died quickly at some point on the bottom of a large body of water. Shellfish do not have much motility, they live on the sea floor generally. It is believable that through the churning action of the flood waters and crustal upheaval that the ground on which they lay was violently thrust upwards to create the various mountain ranges we see, once the waters were receded. Geologists attribute the ever-rising mountain ranges to the continual collision and friction of the tectonic plates against each other. While this process is slow today, it could have been violently swift and drastic at the time of the Flood. How else can organic matter be buried so deeply and under such pressures and heat that it turns to oil, coal and gas? This is not a process that requires millions of years; it has been reproduced in the laboratory. All that is needed is sufficient heat and pressure and it can be done in a matter of hours. We have not even touched on the subject of carbon-dating, which has shown that coal and diamonds all contain measurable amounts of the carbon 14 isotope and could not, therefore, be millions of years old.

We have no way of knowing how many species of animals were alive before the Flood. We have not found most of the world’s fossils, therefore much remains to be discovered and for us to learn. We continue to find new species, both live and in fossil remains, to this day. Perhaps most of those that died became the vast natural oil, coal and gas deposits of the earth. What we do know is that many of the world’s features, such as the American Grand Canyon, the Chinese great Yellow River basin and other formations have recently been explained as created by fast-moving, destructive flood scenarios and not slow, constant erosion-based events. Of course, geologists have no problem explaining that a local flood could change the face of the earth here or there, but they only have a problem when one global Flood is claimed to have changed the face of the entire planet. They also have a problem when it comes to explaining the absence of several important strata that are completely absent in the Grand Canyon formation and elsewhere. Instead, they invoke many more catastrophic events and sometimes even “giant localized floods” to explain the strata and the epochs of time (Cambrian, Jurassic, Triassic, etc.). One such example is the creation of the Mediterranean Sea. It is said to have been formed when the Atlantic ocean waters “breached the strait of Gibraltar, sending a massive flood into the basin.” How convenient; a massive, but otherwise local flood, no chance it could have been a global flood. Keep in mind these time epochs are only human terms invented to categorize things of a certain appearance and to help in sorting them. They are not absolutes and we have no way of testing their validity empirically. We must simply accept them as “fact”.

End of part 2

For more information see:

http://www.ngwa.org/Fundamentals/teachers/Pages/information-on-earth-water.aspx
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/12/071210-dinosaur-grave.html
http://www.livescience.com/43676-ancient-mass-die-off-discovered.html
http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/279/1748/4724.short
http://www.livescience.com/54831-jack-horner-dinosaurs-genius-gala.html
http://phys.org/news/2010-06-geologist-canyon-days-texas.html