Proof of God in the Palm of Your Hand!
haha !! Finally, mainstream scientific papers " getting " it !!
Congrats to PLOS ONE !!
Biomechanical Characteristics of Hand Coordination in Grasping Activities of Daily Living
The explicit functional link indicates that the biomechanical characteristic of tendinous connective architecture between muscles and articulations is the proper design by the Creator to perform a multitude of daily tasks in a comfortable way.
Following publication, readers raised concerns about language in the article that makes references to a 'Creator', and about the overall rationale and findings of the study.
Upon receiving these concerns, the PLOS ONE editors have carried out an evaluation of the manuscript and the pre-publication process, and they sought further advice on the work from experts in the editorial board. This evaluation confirmed concerns with the scientific rationale, presentation and language, which were not adequately addressed during peer review.
Consequently, the PLOS ONE editors consider that the work cannot be relied upon and retract this publication. The editors apologize to readers for the inappropriate language in the article and the errors during the evaluation process.
4 Mar 2016: The PLOS ONE Staff (2016) Retraction: Biomechanical Characteristics of Hand Coordination in Grasping Activities of Daily Living. PLoS ONE 11(3): e0151685. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0151685 View retraction
Hand coordination can allow humans to have dexterous control with many degrees of freedom to perform various tasks in daily living. An important contributing factor to this important ability is the complex biomechanical architecture of the human hand. However, drawing a clear functional link between biomechanical architecture and hand coordination is challenging. It is not understood which biomechanical characteristics are responsible for hand coordination and what specific effect each biomechanical characteristic has. To explore this link, we first inspected the characteristics of hand coordination during daily tasks through a statistical analysis of the kinematic data, which were collected from thirty right-handed subjects during a multitude of grasping tasks. Then, the functional link between biomechanical architecture and hand coordination was drawn by establishing the clear corresponding causality between the tendinous connective characteristics of the human hand and the coordinated characteristics during daily grasping activities. The explicit functional link indicates that the biomechanical characteristic of tendinous connective architecture between muscles and articulations is the proper design by the Creator to perform a multitude of daily tasks in a comfortable way. The clear link between the structure and the function of the human hand also suggests that the design of a multifunctional robotic hand should be able to better imitate such basic architecture.
The reaction ?
Notification from PLOS Staffhttp://journals.plos.org/plosone/article/comment?id=info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fannotation%2F234ef7cc-d89a-4a9e-92d6-9070b175620d
The article should be retracted and the handling editor should be dismissed.
If the experimental results are solid, then the authors should be given an opportunity to remove the questionable statements and Republish with an erratum. The creationist conclusion does not appear to be critical to the interpretation of the study.
I think that pretending to defend a creationist argument (non-science) in a science journal raises serious doubts about the whole enterprise.
In this case I am ashamed that the journal staff, the editor responsable for the paper, the reviewers, all ignored this more than obvious red flag resulting on a creationist argument embedded on a scientific paper.
They should be ashamed of such a discriminating attitude.
As others have noted, utilization of an intelligent design creationism framework for explaining human anatomy is not acceptable for a scientific journal.
I find the use of religious language in a scietific paper totally unacceptable.
Paper on PLOS ONE creates a firestorm by referencing "the Creator"
March 4, 2016 by Bob Yirka report
Credit: PLOS ONE
A trio of researchers from China has caused a stir in the technical publishing arena by including some verbiage in a paper published in the open-source journal PLOS ONE that appears to mention creationism as a part of their scientific endeavor. Due to an extremely negative response, PLOS ONE has retracted the article.
At its core, the paper is a report on an examination the researchers conducted of the human hand—how it is that it is so dexterous and offers so much freedom of control, etc. But in their abstract, they included these words: "…is the proper design by the Creator…"
The mention of "the Creator" has been interpreted by many as an allusion to God and creationism, which most in the scientific community see as scientifically invalid. Many have taken to social media to voice their displeasure regarding the apparent "mistake" by the editors, some suggesting that it appeared that the paper had not been peer-reviewed as is supposed to be the case with PLOS ONE, which adds credence to arguments suggesting open-access sites are not offering readers the same degree of quality as pay-wall sites. Others suggest that it might perhaps have been nothing more than a language problem—the authors and editors of the paper are all native Chinese speakers, and indeed, a report suggests that the authors meant to use a synonym for "nature" but somehow found "creator" instead.
Thus far, most media outlets have sided with the outraged readership, insisting that such papers have no place in the science arena, though some have joked about the pitchfork mentally of the virtual mob, looking for proper vengeance. What appears to be still missing, however, are the few small voices that find such outrage by science fanatics as ominous; those that call for the persecution of heretics like people of a former time; or those noting that many papers are published in respected journals that rely to some degree on improbable reasoning—Einstein and his "spooky action at a distance," for example. And other papers make their points by citing the existence of dark matter or dark energy as possible explanations for whatever they are studying, which for now at least, must be taken on faith.
Intelligent design makes it into Plos One
Paper that says human hand was 'designed by Creator' sparks concern
Mob with Pitchforks Forms as Science Journal PLOS ONE Acknowledges "Proper Design by the Creator"http://www.evolutionnews.org/2016/03/mob_with_pitchf102658.html
Panne bei Fachblatt: Forscher erklären menschliche Hand zum Werk Gotteshttp://www.spiegel.de/wissenschaft/mensch/panne-bei-plos-one-menschen-hand-soll-werk-gottes-sein-a-1080718.html
Scientific paper credits ‘the Creator’ for human hand design
Journal is forced to retract after outcry
Controversy is raging after a peer-reviewed open-access scientific journal, PLOS ONE, published a paper1 recently by a team of four Chinese researchers (three in China, one in Massachusetts).2 The paper dealt with everyday topics such as how human hands grasp objects, and showed these actions that we take for granted require “complex biomechanical architecture”. But this would hardly have been controversial if not for its ‘unfortunate’ use of some extremely taboo language: the researchers in multiple places referred to the Creator. E.g., the Abstract states:
The explicit functional link indicates that the biomechanical characteristic of tendinous connective architecture between muscles and articulations is the proper design by the Creator to perform a multitude of daily tasks in a comfortable way.1
The Introduction includes:
Thus, hand coordination affords humans the ability to flexibly and comfortably control the complex structure to perform numerous tasks. Hand coordination should indicate the mystery of the Creator’s invention.1
Backlash!The public outcry was swift and fierce! One editor at the journal posted, “Just found out @PLOSONE published a paper with ‘evidence’ about some ‘creator’. If not retracted immediately, I will resign as editor.” Buckling to the pressure, the journal did exactly that shortly afterward, with the following statement:
In light of the concerns identified, the PLOS ONE editors have decided to retract the article, the retraction is being processed and will be posted as soon as possible. We apologize for the errors and oversight leading to the publication of this paper.3
Perhaps even sadder than the public response to this paper, however, was that even the authors of the paper themselves seem to have backed down. They attempted to blame references to the Creator on errors in translation, rather than a belief in intelligent design. E.g. the first author wrote in the Comments:
We are sorry for drawing the debates about creationism. Our study has no relationship with creationism. English is not our native language. Our understanding of the word ‘Creator’ was not actually as a native English speaker expected. Now we realized that we had misunderstood the word ‘Creator’. What we would like to express is that the biomechanical characteristic of tendious connective architecture between muscles and articulations is a proper ‘design’ by the ‘nature’ (result of evolution) to perform a multitude of daily grasping tasks. We will change the ‘Creator’ to ‘nature’ in the revised manuscript. We apologize for any troubles may have caused by this misunderstanding.1
But one must wonder if they really mean this, as even one of their critics responded:
We would take this defense seriously if it were the only creationist phrase in the article. But it isn’t. You also talk about hand coordination as evidence of “the mystery of the Creator’s invention.” What mystery is that? Is there a mystery how evolution by natural selection could produce the coordination in question?1
Perhaps they don’t want to be blacklisted from ever being published again?
Fallacy: “Why don’t creationists publish in peer reviewed journals?”Misotheists and their churchian allies (‘useful idiots’), when they can’t refute a creationist argument, often taunt biblical creationists (and Intelligent Designtheorists) with the following challenge:
If there’s really good evidence for Design, then why don’t you submit papers to a secular peer-reviewed scientific journal and gain the support of the mainstream scientific community?
This incident should serve as a perfect response to any such challenge, and a ‘test case’ for what happens in such a circumstance. Far from giving due consideration, the so-called scientific community does the exact opposite: they scorn and bully anyone who would dare attempt to suggest a Creator, and do their best to prevent any such evidence from seeing the light of day. There would be pressure to remove any editor who allowed this to be published.
This is the same type of behavior documented in Ben Stein’s movie Expelled, as well as the book Slaughter of the Dissidents by Dr Jerry Bergman. The simple truth is, the secular academic world is not open to considering evidence for a Divine Creator. The very concept of intelligent design is anathema to them, and they will stop at nothing to prevent any hint of such a Creator from breaking through the pages of secular scientific literature. The oft-cited ‘amazing admission’ by Dr Richard Lewontin once again is relevant here.
The Hand: evidence for designIn reality, the human hand is great evidence for the design of our Creator. For those who have not stubbornly rejected the truth, this simple fact seems obvious! One calls to mind the revulsion of Charles Darwin himself upon viewing the beauty of a peacock feather,4 which he knew he could not explain away by naturalistic means.5 I wonder– do today’s misotheists, such as the editor atPLOS ONE who threatened to resign his position over the mere mention of a ‘Creator’, experience a similar revulsion at the sight of their own hands?
Sir Isaac Newton once said, “In the absence of any other proof, the thumb alone would convince me of God’s existence.” How is this possible?
The question of how the universe began and living creatures came to be is the subject of intense debate. Atheist cosmologists believe the universe popped into existence out of nothing—the result of a “quantum fluctuation” that occurred by chance. Atheist biologists say that life, in all of its variety and complexity, evolved from non-living matter by chance.
To them, chance is the god of atheism, and evolution is the handmaiden of chance.
According to the theory of evolution, over a billion years ago, life began in a primordial soup. Over time, “higher” (more complex) life forms “evolved” from “lower” (less complicated) forms by an unguided process of natural selection and random genetic changes, called mutations. Natural selection supposedly “chose” mutations better suited for survival, ultimately producing all living creatures.
After decades of nearly unchallenged supremacy, this view of reality is under serious attack. Discoveries in fields as diverse as biochemistry and astrophysics portray a finely tuned universe containing amazingly complex life forms. These discoveries have cast much doubt on the assertion that the universe exists by chance and that life randomly evolved from non-living matter.
Not surprisingly, despite mounting evidence to the contrary, atheists still defend evolution with a ferocity that casts them more as cheerleaders for their cause than impartial seekers of truth. They simply will not accept that, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1).
In contrast to the mantra of atheism, the explanation offered by people of faith is that God created the universe and all life forms on Earth. As expressed in the Bible, man was created not by a lengthy process of evolution, but rather, “the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (Gen. 2:7).
From the order and complexity found in the universe and in living creatures, philosophers and theologians reach the conclusion that God exists. This is known as the design argument. As the writer of the book of Psalms expressed it, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork” (Psa. 19:1).
In the book of Romans, the apostle Paul expresses the argument as follows: “For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse” (Rom. 1:20).
Evidence of design can be found as far away as the most distant stars, and as close as the palm of your hand. Familiar and seemingly simple, the human hand is a marvel of functional utility and complexity that provides powerful evidence for the existence of God.
Anatomy of the Human HandThe hand consists of 27 bones, including eight in the wrist, five in the palm, and 14 in the fingers and thumb. The narrow wrist bones form two rows of four bones that fit into a socket in the forearm bones. The hand moves by a sophisticated and coordinated relationship between bone, muscle, tendons, nerves and the brain.
Bones have no power to move themselves; they are moved by muscular exertion through tough cord-like fibers called tendons. One end of a tendon comes from the end of a muscle. The other end attaches to a bone.
Tendons attach the muscles of your forearm to the bones of your fingers. When the brain signals muscles in the arm, wrist and hand to move the hand, some muscles contract while others relax. Extensor muscles straighten the fingers. Flexors permit the fingers to bend and grip. The thumb has two flexors that help us to hold objects.
In comparison to primates (such as great apes or monkeys), humans have a longer opposable thumb. Partly because of this appendage, humans have a greater ability to manipulate and firmly grasp objects of various shapes.
“Compared to animals, human behavior with hand tools is fundamentally distinct. Exclusive elements of hand movement are attained only when the unique human hand’s muscular configuration and the brain’s disproportionately large hand sensory and motor function centers are integrated together” (Randy R. Guliuzza, Made in His Image: The Connecting Power of Hands).
The human primary motor cortex in the brain (which controls voluntary movements) is four times larger than a chimpanzee’s.
RoboticsDespite all of the advances in engineering and computer technology, the development of a robotic hand that is as dexterous as a human hand still exceeds the grasp of modern science.
“‘A robotic hand which can perform tasks with the dexterity of a human hand is one of the holy grails of science,’ said Dr Honghai Liu, who lectures [about] artificial intelligence at the [Portsmouth] University Institute of Industrial Research. The Institute specialises in artificial intelligence including intelligent robotics, image processing and intelligent data analysis.” He adds, “Nothing which exists today even comes close” (ScienceDaily).
What is so amazing, so complex, about the human hand that makes it difficult for scientists and engineers to effectively replicate it in a robot or mechanical device of some kind?
Finger Movements: The astounding dexterity of human fingers is made possible primarily by the coordinated actions of seven muscles that control the index finger, five muscles unique to the thumb, and three other muscles that move the little finger.
Doctor Randy Guliuzza, national representative of the Institute for Creation Research, notes that neuromuscular control of the hand is so optimized that using your fingertips, you can “squeeze to crack an egg with about ten pounds of force and abruptly stop within the distance of the shell’s thickness—about 1/100 of an inch.” He adds, “Evidence shows that the central nervous system predicts the best outcome of every finger movement several movements ahead of its current state.”
An example provided by Dr. Guliuzza illustrates the point: “…skilled typists will visually process up to eight characters in advance and then—in anticipation—the forward plan for muscle movements will commit the finger muscles to an action about three characters in advance of actually striking the keys. Times between keystrokes are commonly as low as 60 milliseconds. Interestingly, speed is fastest if successive keystrokes are between fingers on opposite hands.”
“Thinking” Tendons: The bulky muscles that move the hand and fingers are located in the forearm, where they do not impede the dexterity of the fingers. The power of those muscles is transmitted to the hand through a complex network of tendons. For years, doctors and scientists believed that the central nervous system alone controlled muscle movements. Recently, however, researchers have learned otherwise.
A 2007 article authored by scientists with the Neuromuscular Biomechanics Laboratory at Cornell University stated, “Current thinking attributes information processing for neuromuscular control exclusively to the nervous system. Our cadaveric experiments and computer simulations show, however, that the tendon network of the fingers performs logic computation to preferentially change torque production capabilities [the power to rotate or twist].”
Carefully follow this next quote. What computer models and studies on cadavers have shown is “that the distribution of input tensions in the tendon network itself regulates how tensions propagate to the finger joints, acting like a switching function of a logic gate that nonlinearly enables different torque production capabilities” (ibid.).
The authors go on to state, “Moreover, this form of information processing at the macroscopic scale is a new instance of the emerging principle of nonneural ‘somatic logic’ found to perform logic computation such as in cellular networks.” They add that their “results highlight the biomechanical uniqueness and versatility of human fingers by showing that the nervous system and tendon network work synergistically to reach different regions of torque actuation” (ibid.).
What this technical language tells us is that the tendons connecting muscles to our fingers perform “logic computations” that actually regulate the degree of tension in fingers, and permit “a rich repertoire of finger joint [movement] not possible with simpler tendon paths” (Journal of Neurophysiology).
This research raises a question: Is this degree of complexity the result of blind chance and random mutation over millions of years, or does it make more sense to conclude that the hand was created “as is” by God?
Grip Strength: Human grip strength is powerful evidence of design. The hand is structured such that it is capable of three basic grips: crushing, pinching and supporting.
According to the Institute for Creation Research, “Gripping involves three tendencies for the hand to twist on an axis, and six mechanical variables for each finger. Thanks to the sophistication of the hand/brain relationship and the size of brain capacity, grip combinations are nearly infinite and amazingly versatile.”
Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee found that on average, adult males between the ages of 20 and 24 generate 121 pounds of “crushing” grip strength (similar to a handshake) in their right hands, and women in that same age group had 70.4 pounds of grip strength in their right hand (Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation).
But that does not even begin to describe the level of strength that human hands are capable of demonstrating. Over the centuries, the strongest of men have performed amazing feats of hand strength, including Samson, who slew a thousand men with the jawbone of a donkey (Judg. 15:16).
However, extraordinary grip strength is not necessary for mankind to fulfill the will of God. The hand strength of ordinary people is sufficient for them to engage in all those activities necessary to honor God and enjoy life as He intended.
Was this a chance occurrence?
The Marvel of the Human HandIn his book Fearfully and Wonderfully Made, Dr. Paul Brand, who was one of the foremost hand surgeons in the world, testifies to the wonder—the miracle—of the human body.
Dr. Brand explained that although many people think that fat serves no significant purpose, it does on the hand.
“Underneath the skin in the palm of the hand lie globules of fat with the look and consistency of tapioca pudding. Fat globules, so soft as to be almost fluid, cannot hold their own shape, and so they are surrounded by interwoven fibrils of collagen, like balloons caught in a supporting rope net…where stress occurs, such as on the palm of the hand, fat is tightly gathered and enveloped by fibrous tissue in a design resembling fine Belgian lace.”
When you grasp a hammer in the palm of your hand, each “cluster of fat cells changes its shape in response to the pressure. It yields but cannot be pushed aside because of the firm collagen fibers around it. The resulting tissue, constantly shifting and quivering, becomes compliant, fitting its shape and its stress points to the precise shape of the handle of the hammer. Engineers nearly shout when they analyze this amazing property, for they cannot design a material that so perfectly balances elasticity with viscosity.”
The skin of the hand is also well suited to the task of gripping and handling different kinds of objects.
Dr. Brand wrote, “If my skin tissue had been made harder, I might insensitively crush a goblet of fine crystal as I hold it in my hand; if softer, it would not allow a firm grip.”
The structure of human bones also reflects design.
“In 1867, an engineer demonstrated that the arrangement of bone cells forms the lightest structure, made of least material, to support the body’s weight. No one has successfully challenged his findings” (ibid.).
Although people take bone healing for granted, it is remarkable that “the skeleton is a growing organ. When I cut bone, it bleeds. Most amazing of all, when it breaks, it heals itself” (ibid.).
Another remarkable feature of a normal hand is its sensitivity. Dr. Brand states, “A normal hand can distinguish between a smooth plane of glass and one etched with lines only 1/2500 of an inch deep.” The fingertips have the ability to detect a difference of just three milligrams.
How extraordinary it is that the hand should be so well-suited for its purpose through all of these amazing features and abilities. Was this the product of chance or the creation of God?
Fingerprints Designed by GodWhat about fingerprints? If God designed the human hand, why do we have fingerprints? Do they perform a function, and if not, then why would God have created us with them?
Julien Schiebert and his colleagues at the Laboratoire de Physique Statistique de l’Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris have demonstrated that our fingerprints help us to feel objects through vibrations.
As you move your fingers across a surface, you trigger vibrations that are picked up by nerves. Some of these nerves (called Pacinian corpuscles) are embedded relatively deep (about two millimeters under your skin). Yet, our sense of touch is so refined that we can feel texture differences as small as the width of a human hair, about 200 micrometers. Scientists have wondered how deeply embedded nerves could detect the subtle vibrations involved in the perception of fine differences in textures.
Using robotic fingertips designed to detect tactile information, French scientists discovered that the small ridges on the surface of our fingers (fingerprints) amplify and filter vibrations, which help transmit them to the deeply embedded nerves.
How much do fingerprints enhance our ability to detect tactile differences? Do they double it? Triple it? Scientists found that the vibrations from a patterned fingertip were 100 times stronger than vibrations from a smooth fingertip.
Thanks to fingerprints, our sense of touch is 100 times better than it would be if the surface of our fingers was smooth!
Researchers determined that fingerprints only do their vibration-filtering job when the finger is moving perpendicular (at right angles) to the fingerprint ridges. This means that if fingerprints all ran in one direction, filtering would only occur when fingers moved at right angles to the ridges. But because of the swirl and loop pattern of human fingerprints, every direction of movement activates filtering properties.
What about the fact that fingerprint patterns vary from person to person?
According to the leading researcher of the study, G. Debrégeas, “The nice thing is that pattern doesn’t matter. The distinctiveness of fingerprint patterns from one person to the next doesn’t seem to have an effect on filtering capabilities” (Science).
Problems with EvolutionThe hand and its various functions provide much evidence in support of the belief that life was created by God. But is there evidence which is directly at odds with the theory that life evolved by chance?
In his book What Is Creation Science? biologist Gary Parker writes, “Using descent from a common ancestor to explain similarities is probably the most logical and appealing idea that evolutionists have. Isaac Asimov, well known science fiction writer, is so pleased with the idea that he says our ability to classify plants and animals on a groups-within-groups hierarchical basis virtually forces scientists to treat evolution as ‘a fact.’ In his enthusiasm, Asimov apparently forgot that we can classify kitchen utensils on a groups-within-groups basis, but that hardly forces anyone to believe that knives evolved into spoons, spoons into forks, or saucers into cups and plates.”
Evolutionist William Fix explains in The Bone Peddlers: Selling Evolution: “The older text-books on evolution make much of the idea of homology, pointing out the obvious resemblances between the skeletons of the limbs of different animals. Thus the ‘pentadactyl’ limb pattern is found in the arm of a man, the wing of a bird, and the flipper of a whale, and this is held to indicate their common origin. Now if these various structures were transmitted by the same gene-complex, varied from time to time by mutations and acted upon by environmental selection, the theory would make good sense. Unfortunately this is not the case. Homologous organs are now known to be produced by totally different gene complexes in the different species. The concept of homology in terms of similar genes handed on from a common ancestor has broken down.”
Thus, to believe in evolution, one would have to believe that separate gene complexes for each of these “similar” limbs all evolved independently by chance. The improbability of evolution is increased beyond comprehension, in light of the greater improbability that not one, but multiple separate gene complexes would have to have evolved independently.
Proteins and EvolutionThe growth and functioning of muscles, including those that move the human hand, depend on proteins.
Did they evolve by chance?
A protein called titin (also known as connectin) is involved in the contraction of striated muscles, such as those in the human forearm which move fingers and generate grip strength. The diversity in the kind and function of proteins results from differences in the number and sequencing of amino acids. Like all proteins, titin is composed of a specific chain of amino acids. The average amino acid chain contains between 300 and 400 amino acids. Titin, the largest protein in the body, is made up of 34,350 amino acids.
Proteins must have the precise shape to accomplish their specific function or functions in the cell. A slight variation in the correct shape of the protein molecule type is detrimental for the cell.
Why should we think that these various amino acid chains did not just evolve?
The answer to that question is provided in part by Cambridge University educated Philosopher of Science, Dr. Stephen C. Meyer in Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design.
Dr. Meyer explains that to form a protein, amino acids must link together by forming a particular chemical bond known as a peptide bond. Otherwise, the amino acids will not fold into proteins. The probability of building a chain of 150 amino acids in which all linkages are peptide bonds is estimated to be 1 in 10 to the 45th power (for the sake of perspective, 10 to the 2nd power is 100, 10 to the 3rd is 1000).
In nature, there are both “left-handed” (L-forms) and “right-handed” amino acids. Each of these two types is produced with roughly equal frequency. A protein will not function unless all of its amino acids are left-handed. The odds that all of the amino acids in a peptide bond chain of 150 amino acids will be “left-handed” are also about 1 in 10 to the 45th power. Thus, the chances of forming a 150 amino acid chain in which all of the bonds are peptide bonds and all of the amino acids are L-forms is roughly 1 chance in 10 to the 90th power.
Proteins will not function unless they fold into stable structures. Among all possible amino acid sequences of 150 amino-acids in length, only 1 in 10 to the 74th power is capable of folding into a stable structure. This means that a random process will result in a functional protein about one time in every 10 to the 74th attempts.
Taking all of this together, the odds of a 150-amino-acid compound randomly assembling into a functional protein in a prebiotic soup is equal to the probability of having only peptide bonds (1 in 10 to the 45th), times the probability of only left-handed amino acids (1 in 10 to the 45th) times the probability of correct amino acid sequencing (1 in 10 to the 74th). The result is 1 in 10 to the 164th power, meaning that the odds of a 150-amino-acid compound randomly assembling into a functional protein in a prebiotic soup is 1 in 10 to the 164th power. How big is 10 to the 164th power?
Dr. Meyer says that the total number of all protons, neutrons and electrons in the entire observable universe is 1 in 10 to the 80th power! And if that is not unlikely enough to cast doubt on the evolution of protein, consider that the analysis above was for a protein chain containing 150 amino acids. By comparison, titin, comprised of 34,350 amino acids, is significantly more complex and thus far less likely to have formed by chance than the 150 amino-acid protein considered in the example.
To put this in perspective, the odds of being struck by lightning during your lifetime are 1 in 600,000 while your odds of being struck twice are 1 in 360 billion. Further, the likelihood of your house being hit by a meteor is 1 in 182 trillion—still a miniscule number compared to the chance that proteins evolved!
Undeniable ProofThe human hand attests to the existence of the God who created heaven and Earth, and to His love for mankind. Each and every aspect of the hand serves a purpose, and each of its parts work in concert to produce what modern science cannot—an incredible combination of fluidity, strength, sensitivity and dexterity. The progress of science brings greater awareness of an extraordinary complexity that random processes did not—and could never—produce. To say otherwise is to deny the dictates of common sense and rob God of the glory that is His due.
The pentadactyl pattern and common descent
|The pentadactyl structure—five digits (four fingers and a thumb for humans) at the end of the limb structure—is one of the most celebrated proof texts for evolution. The pentadactyl structure is found throughout the tetrapods and its uses include flying, grasping, climbing and crawling. Such diverse activities, evolutionists reason, should require diverse limbs. There seems to be no reason why all should need a five digit limb. Why not three digits for some, eight for others, 13 for some others, and so forth? And yet they all are endowed with five digits. As Darwin explained, “What can be more curious than that the hand of a man, formed for grasping, that of a mole for digging, the leg of the horse, the paddle of the porpoise, and the wing of the bat, should all be constructed on the same pattern, and should include similar bones, in the same relative positions?” (Darwin, 382)|
Such a suboptimal design must be an artefact of common descent—a suboptimal design that was handed down from a common ancestor rather than specifically designed for each species. And the common descent pattern formed by this structure is often claimed as strong evidence for evolution. (Berra, 21; Campbell et. al., 509; Futuyma, 47; Johnson and Losos, 298; Johnson and Raven, 286; Mayr, 26) One text calls it a “classic example” of evolutionary evidence. (Ridley, 45)
But this prediction is now known to be false as the digit structure in the tetrapods does not conform to the common descent pattern. In fact, appendages have various digit structures and they are distributed across the species in various ways. This is found both in extant species and in the fossil record. As evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould explained, “The conclusion seems inescapable, and an old ‘certainty’ must be starkly reversed.” (Gould)
This means that evolutionists cannot model the observed structures and pattern of distribution merely as a consequence of common descent. Instead, a complicated evolutionary history is required (Brown) where the pentadactyl structure re-evolves in different lineages, and appendages evolve, are lost, and then evolve again. And as one recent study concluded, “Our phylogenetic results support independent instances of complete limb loss as well as multiple instances of digit and external ear opening loss and re-acquisition. Even more striking, we find strong statistical support for the re-acquisition of a pentadactyl body form from a digit-reduced ancestor. … The results of our study join a nascent body of literature showing strong statistical support for character loss, followed by evolutionary re-acquisition of complex structures associated with a generalized pentadactyl body form.” (Siler and Brown)
Berra, Tim. 1990. Evolution and the Myth of Creationism. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
Brown, R., et. al. 2012. “Species delimitation and digit number in a North African skink.” Ecology and Evolution 2:2962-73.
Campbell, Neil, et. al. 2011. Biology. 5th ed. San Francisco: Pearson.
Darwin, Charles. 1872. The Origin of Species. 6th ed. London: John Murray.
Futuyma, Douglas. 1982. Science on Trial: The Case for Evolution. New York: Pantheon Books.
Gould, Steven Jay. 1991. “Eight (or Fewer) Little Piggies.” Natural History 100:22-29.
Johnson, G., J. Losos. 2008. The Living World. 5th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Johnson, G., P. Raven. 2004. Biology. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
Mayr, Ernst. 2001. What Evolution Is. New York: Basic Books.
Ridley, Mark. 1993. Evolution. Boston: Blackwell Scientific.
Siler C., R. Brown. 2011. “Evidence for repeated acquisition and loss of complex body-form characters in an insular clade of Southeast Asian semi-fossorial skinks.” Evolution 65:2641-2663.
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