Ordered thoughts regarding important stuff like God, Science, and the Universe. The author will endeavor to answer all sincere questions in these matters, including help with math homework, genuine questions about God, etc.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

No, Virginia, There Is No Santa Claus

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
"Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
"Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
"Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrongright. There is no Santa Claus.  But there is truth.  I, on the other hand, shall commit a series of logical fallacies to justify a lie in order to preserve my paper’s advertising revenue that spikes during the Christmas season.  Let me begin with the ever-effective ad hominem fallacy and claim something about your friends for which I have gathered no evidence whatsoever: They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. [Of course, this is simply attacking the source rather than providing a legitimate argument.  But it often works.  Now to commit logical suicide by making use of something known as the self-destructing argument:] All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.  [The reason that such an argument is self-destructing is because I, myself, am a mere man.  If men’s intellects are little and “insect”-like, then I have disqualified myself from making any truth claims whatsoever, including the particular truth claim that Santa Claus lives.]

[Now to repeat the unsupported conjecture (repetition of a false or unsupported claim is an important device in propaganda):] Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. [I now continue with a false logical device known as the non-sequitur:] He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.  [Whether any of the previous statements are true or false is actually immaterial because no argument has been proposed that connects the existence of Santa Claus to the existence of love, or generosity, etc.]

[Here is another non-sequitur:]Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! [And now to introduce the fallacy of the affirming the negative:] You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world. [Lack of observation does not constitute a proof.]

[Now for a string of unsupported conjectures and non-sequiturs:] You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

[And another restatement of the unproved thesis:] No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. [And a final unsupported conjecture:] A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

[The moral of the story?  Don’t believe everything you read in the papers.]

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Saving Leonardo by Nancy Pearcy/Book Review by J. Colannino

Saving Leonardo is Nancy Pearson's magnum opus and furthers the thought she articulated in Total Truth. Building on the work of the great theologian, Francis Schaeffer, Nancy continues her analysis of secularism and asks a simple question: Is secularism a positive force in the modern world?

The book is beautifully written and illustrated in 328 pages on heavy gloss paper, and after a brief introduction (Why Americans Hate Politics) it is organized into two main parts comprising nine chapters and an epilogue. Part 1, The Threat of Global Secularism, comprises three chapters: 1.) Are You an Easy Mark? 2.) Truth and Tyranny 3.)Sex, Lies, and Secularism. Part 2, Two Paths to Secularism, comprises the remaining six chapters and an epilogue: 4.) Crash Course on Art and Worldview 5.) Beauty in the Eye of the Machine (The Enlightenment Heritage) 6.) Art Red in Tooth and Claw (The Enlightenment Heritage) 7. Romancing the Canvas (The Romantic Heritage) 8.) Escape from Nihilism (The Romantic Heritage) 9.) Morality at the Movies; and an Epilogue, Bach School of Apologetics. The book is heavily annotated and referenced with acknowledgments, a list of notes, and list of images; but unfortunately this scholarly work has no index.

By surveying art and philosophy from Aristotle, Descartes, and onward, Pearcy weaves together a coherent, cogent, and convincing case that secularism is an abject failure both as a worldview and as a positive force in art, science, and the modern world. To do this, she builds on Schaeffer's fact/value split -- a theme she thoroughly introduced in Total Truth and amplifies further via example in Saving Leonardo. Basically, the argument is this: secular thought has devolved to the following. When it comes to scientific facts, what's true is true. That is, 1 + 1 = 2 for everyone everywhere every time. However, when it comes to values, i.e., morality in its various expressions (e.g., abortion, euthanasia, embryonic stem cell research, homosexuality, etc.), what's true for you is true and what's true for me is true -- even if such "truths" are mutually contradictory. Thus, with respect to facts, secularists are modernists but with respect to values, secularists are post-modernists.

This schizophrenia continues in worldview. That is, a worldview should explain the world, not fall apart when the focus shifts. Yet those secularists who genuinely believe that life evolved from a prebiotic soup do not treat their loved ones as if they were mere rearrangements of carbon atoms. They do not behave as if their love is an evolutionary trick foisted upon them by their genes. They genuinely love.

However, the fact/value split has more serious issues than being schizophrenic; it commits suicide. That is, if there is no absolute truth, then any statement affirming such is self-destructive reducing to an absolute truth claim that absolute truth does not exist. If all thought is ultimately the result of evolution, then so is the thought that all thought is the result of evolution, and we have just lost any objective basis to affirm that all thought is a result of evolution.

One may argue that not all seemingly coherent worldviews are true, but one cannot properly argue that an incoherent worldview is true, and secularism offers an incoherent worldview. But that is not all. As Pearcy shows, secularism has had a debilitating effect on art and science. It destroys any basis for science -- if absolute truth does not exist why study it in the particular? It also corrupts art, which Pearcy shows via numerous examples in her text.

Christian theism stands in stark contrast to secularism; it is a coherent worldview: because we were created by a loving God, love is not illusory but genuine. Because God is a truthful moral agent, true morality exists. Because the Christian God is a rational God, a rational world is not only allowed but expected; indeed, historically it was Christianity that motivated science while secularism (in the form of modernism and later post-modernism) among other "isms" (such as fatalism, paganism, animism, and mysticism) militated against it.

But is Christianity true? That is the question worthy of debate and the one that is tacitly dismissed without due consideration by the fact/value split. Christian apologetics have affirmed a rational and emphatic yes to that question that has withstood millennia of destructive criticism. How remarkable that two millennia after its introduction by the most common of folk, and after continued opposition by the greatest world empires, that we continue to name our children Peter and Paul and our dogs Nero and Caesar.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The Devil's Delusion. Atheism and Its Scientific Pretentions/ Book Review, J. Colannino

Link to book here

Everyone knows that scientists engage in a dispassionate republic of ideas where truth holds sway and raw intellect leads to a benevolent atheism. Of course, that's a load of crap; but it has been the party line for some decades now. Thank heaven for David Berlinski who refreshingly exposes both scientists and science for who and what they are.

Berlinski is a secular Jew and agnostic who knows science as it really is. He has taught university level math, philosophy, and English. His post doc was at Columbia in mathematics and molecular genetics. American born, he speaks fluent English, German, and French. He is an amazing intellect. He has made a career of outing naked emperors. Next to Melville, Berlinski's prose is about the best in print. Witness: "While science has nothing of value to say on the great and aching questions of life, death, love, and meaning, what the religious traditions of mankind have said forms a coherent body of thought" (page xvi). "[P]hysical theories having said nothing about God, say nothing about right or wrong, good or bad. [T]he physical sciences offer a grossly inadequate view of reality" (p 35). " 'We feel' Wittgenstein wrote, 'that even when all possible scientific questions have been answered, the problems of of life remain completely untouched ' " (p 151).

Here's another zinger.

"For scientists persuaded that there is no God, there is no finer pleasure than recounting the history of religious brutality and persecution" (p 19). [but] "What Hitler did not believe and what Stalin did
not believe and what Mao did not believe and what the SS did not believe and what the Gestapo did not believe and what the NKVD did not believe and what the commissars, functionaries, swaggering executioners, Nazi doctors, Communist Party theoreticians, intellectuals, Brown Shirts, Black Shirts, gauleiters, and a thousand party hacks did not believe was that God was watching what they were doing" (p 26).

Hammering away at the incoherency of what passes for quantum cosmology, Darwinian evolution, the scientific method, and the rubbish comprising so much of big science, Berlinski tells it like it is: "No less than the doctrines of religious belief, the doctrines of quantum cosmology are what they seem: biased, partial, inconclusive, and largely in the service of passionate but unexamined conviction" (p 104). "Quantum cosmology is a branch of mathematical metaphysics" (p 107). "If the mystification induced by its modest mathematics were removed from the subject, what remains would not appear appreciably different in kind from various creation myths in which the origin of the universe is attributed to sexual congress between primordial deities" (p 108). "The claim that the human mind is the product of evolution is not unassailable fact. It is barely coherent. The idea that man was created in the image of God remains what it has always been: And that is the instinctive default of the human race" (p 179).

The point is not anti-intellectualism. Far from it. The point is that intellect is precisely what has been abandoned. "Did you imagine that science was a disinterested pursuit of truth? Well, you were wrong" (p 112).

Berlinski rightly decries "Evidence so compelling that no part of it need be produced" (p 128). Although he is here referencing the Anthropic Principle, his comment would just as easily apply to global warming or junk "science" of any sort. In true science, one man with the truth is a majority. In junk science, a consensus of the Illuminati supersedes reason. Or, as Berlinski puts it "The Landscape and the Anthropic Principle represent the ascendancy of moral relativism in physical thought" (p 134).

Berlinski ends his tome with a refreshingly frank discussion of Darwinian evolution: "Within the English speaking world, Darwin's theory of evolution remains the only scientific theory to be widely championed by the scientific community and widely disbelieved by everyone else" (p 186). "Suspicious about Darwin's theory arise for two reasons. The first: the theory makes little sense. The second: it is supported by little evidence" (p 187). "If Darwin's theory of evolution has little to contribute to the content of the sciences, it has much to offer their ideology. It serves as the creation myth of our time, assigning properties to nature previously assigned to God. It thus demands an especially ardent form of advocacy" (pp 190, 191).

One might think that as a researcher and engineer, I would be appalled at Berlinski's deft dismemberment of the modern scientific edifice. On the contrary, I am refreshed. Theists invented science -- sorry for any embarrassment this might cause -- but it was moral relativists who turned it into a religion. It is time to take science back. The Devil's delusion is a powerful step in the right direction.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Evolution and Smelling Water/J. Colannino

If Darwinian evolution is true, why can't humans smell water?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


The American Statistical Association's Statement on Intelligent Design

Post Script (from the executive director):
In addition to having endorsed the AAAS resolution regarding science curricula (see my Board Highlights, Amstat News, May 2006), the Board of Directors recently adopted the following statement and resolution: It is the mission of the American Statistical Association to promote excellence in statistical practice and to work for the improvement of statistical education at all levels. Statistics, as the science of data, is embedded within the broader scientific enterprise, and as statisticians, we have a responsibility to help safeguard its integrity and that of science education generally. ASA takes no position on whether intelligent design is right or wrong. Nevertheless, it is clear that intelligent design is not a scientific theory subject to empirical testing, and thus has no place in science education. Therefore, the Board of Directors of ASA adopts the following resolution:

Intelligent design should not be taught as part of any science curriculum. Further, the Association urges its members to continue to support vigorously those principles of inquiry and verification that characterize sound scientific practice.

To the editor,

ASA has erred in its resolution regarding intelligent design. In its preface, ASA stated that “intelligent design … is not subject to empirical testing and thus has no place in science education.” In fact, intelligent design is critical to well established sciences such as forensic science and archeology, to name two. An archeologist examining a pot shard or arrowhead artifact must determine whether the candidate object was formed by an intelligent process or a natural one. Likewise, a detective or coroner investigating a homicide must judge whether a death was the result of natural cause or one requiring deliberation and intelligence. As statisticians, we have an opportunity to provide expertise about the likelihood of random events. This includes events in the life sciences. An a priori rejection of possible nonrandom events without recourse to evidence is what has no place in science education.

Joseph Colannino, P.E.
Chemical Engineer
Manager, Knowledge Systems

ASA's Reply

From: Smith, William B. [mailto:williambsmith@amstat.org]
Sent: Thursday, September 14, 2006 12:45 PM
To: joecolannino@sbcglobal.net
Cc: Executive Committee
Subject: FW: Your message to ASA

Re: Your message concerning the ASA Board of Director’s resolution on regarding teaching intelligent design in the science curriculum.

Dear colleague,

I am responding for the ASA Board of Director’s Executive Committee regarding your message concerning the Board’s resolution on teaching intelligent design in the science curriculum of our nation’s schools. Thank you for your input. The Executive Committee has discussed this response to the resolution and by this note expresses its appreciation.

The Board resolution was the result of draft documents being submitted by two ASA committees. The Board discussed the drafts at length and eventually endorsed the AAAS resolution of 2002 on the same topic, as well as adopting the much shortened resolution that appeared in AMSTAT News (July 2006 issue, a copy of relevant page is attached).

Please know that these decisions neither were made hastily nor with unanimity. Again, the Executive Committee thanks you for your input.

With best regards,


William B. Smith,
Executive Director, American Statistical Association
732 North Washington Street
Alexandria, Virginia 22314-1943 U.S.A.
Tel: (703) 684-1221
Fax: (703) 684-6456

Your Response
What do you think?

Thursday, July 13, 2006


Would you like to see your post on this website? Do you have something interesting you would like to say regarding non-random behavior? If so, leave your comment here.

Friday, March 31, 2006


For sometime now, evolutionists have charged that complex outcomes (including biological life) may be generated from simple instructions. This was asserted by Dawkins [1] long ago (1986) when he was amazed to find that simple instructions led to complex looking “biomorphs.” And what were biomorphs? They were sets of branching lines that superficially resembled insects. The instructions to create them were written on an Apple computer in a relatively simple BASIC computer program. Small “mutations” in the rules would lead to complex line drawings that delightfully surprised Dawkins. When he self-selected certain rules (thereby simulating a micro-evolutionary selective breeding pressure) he could produce relatively complicated looking “bugs” [my description]. Of course, if one looked carefully, one could see they were merely branching lines – ink on paper. Yet as a whole, the biomorphs did bear a gross resemblance to insect life due to rules coding for bilateral symmetry, the numbers and kinds of branching allowed, and rules for stopping the branching. Dawkins’ argument was that such rules were analogous to genes – the biological instructions that code for hereditary traits like hair and eye color, or more fundamentally, body plan. More recently (2002), Wolfram[2] published his magnum opus “A New Kind of Science,” which asserted the same. Woven throughout this interesting book was the tale of “cellular automata” – simple computer rules that generated fancy looking fractal pictures. The claim being reiterated was that simple rules can lead to the expression of complicated outcomes.

Now, on its face, the claim is irrefutable. That is, in general, simple rules or instructions do code for complex outcomes. Otherwise, why have the rules? That is, the blueprint is simple compared to the house, the electrical schematic is simple compared to the radio. But such an argument overlooks two things. First, there are the ancillary structures needed to express such rules, and second, intelligence underlies the rules themselves.

To take the last point first, in the examples of Dawkins and Wolfram, no one is claiming that anything but intelligence created the rules in the first place. The intelligence came from the programmer. The tacit assertion is that the rules are so simple, they could have developed by chance, but that is mere conjecture and without demonstrable example unless one begs the question. (It is also philosphically untenable – see “The Religion of Evolution” in this blog.)

Some have argued that ice crystals exhibit order without intelligence or information. (This ignores the possibility of a Grand Intelligence, which seems to be the point of the whole exercize to begin with, but more fundamentally) what separates information from snowflakes is specified complexity[3]. That is, information is complex, but in a particular way that makes sense to a sender and receiver. For example, the text on this page conforms to rules for syntax, grammar, vocabulary, punctuation, and the like. If one wanted to communicate using snowflakes, one would need to interrupt the regular monotony with specified complexity. Specified complexity is easy to distinguish from natural causes. This is the paradigm behind the SETI project (search for extraterrestrial intelligence): radio telescopes scan the sky for specicified complexity, though they have yet to find it. This is a hallmark of any message. If you found a page from a book in the dirt, you would not presume that it was some chance combination of wind and wood. Rather, you would presume someone of some intelligence penned it.

And so, on to my main objection against simple rules originating the most complex thing of all – life. Simple rules require complicated ancillary structures. Rules do not exist in a vacuum. Rules are first coded by a sender. They are transmitted and preserved in a medium. They are decoded by a receiver. And finally, they are expressed by a builder. Again, we shall use the analogy of instructions for building a house. An architect codes the design onto a paper – a blueprint. He does so using accepted rules and conventions and with symbols having shared meaning. These he expresses with general arrangement and detail drawings. A receiver, skilled in the art, interprets them. He dispatches and coordinates builders and suppliers to requisition the materials, pour the foundation, erect the frame, put in the plumbing, add the electrical, and finish the interior and exterior – all according to the rules, i.e., the blueprints.

Now in the case of cellular automata, a programmer encodes the rules. The rule is the product of intelligence, but even if it were to magically appear out of thin air, it is useless by itself. It needs a computer program to house and empower it. It needs some media such as CD-ROM or magnetic memory to store it for future retrieval. It requires magnificently designed computer hardware to empower software that decodes the program. It needs a supply of electricity. It needs a printer or screen to express the final result. The point is that the rule is the tip of the iceberg. No matter how simple it is, all the ancillary structures – media, builder, encoder, decoder, supply, and the like – are all remarkably complex, intelligently designed and interconnected, and absolutely essential to express the final goal of the design.

If simple rules generating complex life are to be taken seriously, we need to imagine not only the natural genesis for “simple” rules (already a conundrum); we need also to imagine a highly interconnected set of processes that decode, store and transmit, receive and build; and which arose from nothingness. In the final analysis, whether the rules are simple or complex is ultimately insufficient to a naturalistic explanation of complex biological life. For it is not the merely the rules that show themselves formidable and refractory to their random genesis. Indeed, these are dwarfed by the need for a whole set of ancillary structures that are infinitely more complex.


[1] Dawkins, Richard., The Blind Watchmaker :Why Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe Without Design, W.W. Norton & Co., New York, 1986

2] Wolfram, Stephen, A New Kind of Science, Wolfram Media, Inc., Champagne, IL, 2002.

[3] Dembski, William, http://www.uncommondescent.com/

Sunday, January 29, 2006


Evolution is currently a theory in crisis owing to a poverty of evidence. As proposed by Darwin, evolution was a gradual transition of one kind of creature to another. However, no evidence exists for any suych gradual transitions, and the problem grows worse the more we look in detail. [1] The term evolution is usually equivocated to obfuscate the distinction between microevolution and macroevolution. Microevolution is not controversial. It is an increase in the gene pool frequency caused by a selective breeding pressure. That is, any environmental condition that favors one characteristic over another will lead over time to an increase in the expression of that characteristic. Microevolution is demonstrable and stands up to the four pillars of the scientific method – it is observable, testable, repeatable, and falsifiable. Microevolution can lead to great diversity within creature categories and may cause species to diverge so far apart that they can no longer interbreed. However, birds remain birds, moths remain moths, etc. We do not have lizards becoming birds or one kind of creature morphing into another.

Macroevolution and Chemical Evolution
In contrast, macroevolution postulates reptiles evolving into birds or sharing a common ancestor; likewise for apes and men and all of life as we know it. Chemical evolution extrapolates even further, postulating that chemicals in a primordial "soup" blanketed by some presumed atmosphere combined to form self-replicating molecules and the beginning of life. For the “Church of Darwin,” evolution incorporates all these concepts in a metaphysical “goo-to-you” scheme as a matter of faith. None of these latter conjectures are science because they are not testable, repeatable, or falsifiable. When evolutionists are asked for proof of goo-to-you evolution (which they simply call “evolution”) they equivocate and cite microevolution (which they also call evolution). This bait and switch tactic is so common that most evolutionists do not even know that they are doing it. Thus, evolutionists give their religion an air of credibility by associating it with science. In this sense, it is like other religions birthed after the scientific revolution such as Christian Science; The Church of Christ, Scientist; or, the Church of Scientology.

Creedal Statements of the Church of Darwin
Christianity has various creeds and paradigms (e.g., the golden rule, resurrection of the dead, substitutionary atonement, etc.). Not to be outdone, the Church of Darwin endorses certain creeds or mantras such as descent with modification (that is, the concept of continual and gradual change), time and chance as causative agents, life from chemicals, etc.

Perhaps the best known creedal statement is “survival of the fittest.” With apologies in advance to Binney & Smith, “survival of the fittest” is the Silly Putty™ of creedal statements because it can stretch itself into any desired special pleading. Why is the swift leopard favored evolutionarily? Because of its swiftness. Why is the slow sloth favored evolutionarily? Because of its slowness. Why is the large elephant favored, or the small mouse, or warm-blooded mammals, or cold-blooded reptiles? Because of their respective largeness, or smallness, or warm-bloodedness, or cold-bloodedness, or whatever. Swiftness is an advantage in catching prey, slowness is an advantage in conserving energy. Largeness is an advantage in resisting attack. Smallness is an advantage in avoiding capture and detection. Cold-bloodedness confers energy efficiency. Warm-bloodedness allows motility in cold. Survival of the fittest is merely circular reasoning. Those that survive are fittest. Those that are fittest, survive. These are mere tautologies, and as all tautologies, have no predictive or explanatory power whatsoever.

There is nothing that cannot be explained by evolution because evolution explains everything, even contradictory things. Consider “descent with modification –” the concept of continual change. Yet, supposedly the crocodile has not evolved for millions of years and is a “living fossil.” If evolution is so unrelenting, if time is so coercive, why has the crocodile stayed so refractory a creature? The same can be asked of some plants (e.g., the Ginkgo Biloba tree), mammals (e.g., the okapi), fish (e.g., the coelacanth), insects (e.g., army ants, cockroaches) or amphibians (e.g., the salamander). All are “living fossils.” Apparently, evolution is relentless except when it is not.

Religious Stories
All religions have their stories. Christians take Bible stories quite literally. The Church of Darwin is similar to Christianity in that it believes its stories, but with far less warrant. The Church of Darwin teaches that long ago in a land not so far away, the ancient atmosphere comprised ammonia, methane, and water vapor blanketing a primoridal soup. One day, an energetic event produced amino acids, which led to the first self-replicating molecule. Then these self-replicating molecules assembled into the first life – protozoa. [2] Ultimately, protozoa evolved to plums, platypuses, and people.

However, history gives us a different picture: the proposition of evolution came first, and afterward, when proponents realized that oxygen atmospheres were an embarrassment for evolution, the atmosphere was changed to a reducing one. Not now or ever has there been any evidence to support the seminal requirements of a reducing atmosphere or a primordial pre-biotic soup. [3] It is a just-so story created to bolster the possibility of evolution. Moreover, even the most favorable reducing atmosphere and fairy tale scenario creates only chemicals from chemicals. In fact, such simulations testify in the opposite direction, that the synthesis of organic chemicals requires intelligent design, because such experiments cannot produce any detectable quantity of amino acids except by finely tuned starting chemistry and elaborately designed apparatuses to trap organic chemicals as they form. Without intelligent intervention, the rate of destruction dwarfs and overwhelms the rate of formation.

Another oxymoronic mantra is that “time makes the impossible possible.” Unfortunately, all of the necessary reactions proceed in the wrong direction – from you to goo, not from goo to you. Given enough time, all you becomes goo, not the other way around. When your driving in the wrong direction, neither speed nor time are your ally. It is a bit like trying to reach your destination by averaging a million steps backward for every step forward. Actually, this is a gross understatement, and so far we have only considered amino acids. One is still unbelievably far removed from a single protein, and still farther removed from a single cell, and still farther removed from the distinction between “live cell” and “dead cell,” such distinction being all but opaque to modern biological science.

The metaphysics of evolution
Strictly speaking, evolution is metaphysics. It is a belief system. In a word, it is religion, though mythology is a better moniker. Therefore, it needs to be countered not with scientific data (which evolutionists routinely ignore,[4] distort,[5] or invent[6]) but with metaphysical arguments.

Evolution is a worldview. Ironically, the worldview embraces materialism, which states that nothing exists but matter. Obviously, this is a self-destructive argument. It reasons that only matter exists. However, reason is not a material entity. Materialism also disavows the supernatural, but without foundation. Ask the evolutionist “What created life?” and he will answer “Matter.” What created matter? "The Big Bang." What created the Big Bang?

The current mythology goes like this: “15 billion years ago a singularity exploded and the universe leapt into existence.” Nice try, but what caused the singularity? Was it self-caused? A self-caused entity is formally impossible because nothing can predate itself. Was it an infinite regress of causes? This too is a philosophical disaster. It is a bit like the king who asks his wise men “What supports the world?” The reply – two elephants. And what supports the elephants? Giant turtles. And what supports the giant turtles? More turtles. When the king begins to ask what supports these turtles he is interrupted: “No use asking sire, it’s turtles all the way down!”[7] An infinite regress solves nothing, it merely compounds the problem infinitely. If there is no first cause then the entire system collapses without foundation. Was the first cause uncaused? Then we arrive at an Uncaused Cause, and this leads inexorably to an Almighty God (see A Proof of God, in a previous blog.)

Evolution, like all religions, primarily concerns man and his relationship to God. Historically, it was not creationists (main stream scientists of the time) that invoked religious or metaphysical arguments to bolster their claims, but rather evolutionists.[8] This trend continues today. Rarely do Christians make reference to God in their scientific works, except perhaps in passing. On the other hand, defenders of evolution almost always do.[9] This is because evolution is not a science but a religious movement. To be sure, Christians do earnestly contend for the faith, but they do so in the course of apologetics, not science. In other words, evolutionists treat evolution the way Christians treat Christianity. One may consider this as hostile evidence for evolution as primarily religious, not scientific.

Religious Iconography of the Church of Darwin
Like all religions, the Church of Darwin has its iconography. Eastern philosophy has the yin and yang symbol. Christianity has the cross (an icon for the crucifixion) and the dove (an icon for the Holy Spirit and His gracious work). However, the icon of Christianity itself may well be the fish. It calls to mind the supernatural in the miracle of the loaves and fishes[10], Christ's promise to make the apostles "fishers of men,"[10a] and originates from the Greek acronym for “Jesus Christ, God’s Son – Savior.” In Greek, these letters transliterate to “ichthys,” the Greek word for fish.

The Church of Darwin now has its own symbol – a fish with legs, reflecting the evolutionary creed "descent with modification." In lieu of the Greek letters, the fish encapsulates the word “DARWIN.” In mocking the ichthys, the clear idea is that Darwinism is a rival worldview to Christianity and antagonistic toward it. Some versions display the Darwinian fish eating the Christian ichthys. This conveys the important Darwinian creed “survival of the fittest.” The clear message is that Darwinism is both hostile to and superior to Christianity. It appears that once one becomes a member of the Church of Darwin, there is neither room nor need for Jesus Christ, God, or a Savior – a concept that evolutionists comprehend all too quickly and Christians apprehend all too slowly.

Evolution as a Competing Religion
The church has withstood various philosophical attacks throughout history including many heresies and persecutions. However, the theory of evolution has been, by far, the most devastating and is responsible for more people abandoning their faith or failing to come to faith than any other single factor.[11] For example, a 2004 study by UCLA reported that more than 80 percent of college freshman said they attended church services frequently or occasionally during the latter years of high school. By their freshman year in college, that number plummeted to 52%, and by their junior year, only 29% continued in church attendance.[12]

The Legacy of Evolution
All religions have had moments that they would rather forget. The Crusades and Inquisitions[13] are a genuine embarrassment to Christians for several reasons; first because about 5,000 persons were murdered over the course of 300 years,[14] in violation of the Biblical dictum “You shall not murder,” and Jesus’ clear teaching: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” In this case, one can make a distinction between nominal Christianity and Christianity. Though it does not ameliorate the casualties, we can confidently declare that nominal Christianity imitates the name but not the practice. The paranoia surrounding Moslem conquest spawned the Inquisition. However, the words of Christianity's author, Jesus Christ, cannot rationally be stretched to condone it.

Nominal Christians have also advocated slavery and racism. And the Bible admits that there are always some who have no regard for context, preferring instead to distort scripture to a self-serving end.[15] The Bible even records Satan misquoting scripture,[16] but the point is that nothing paradigmatic to Christianity can fairly or rationally be stretched to justify such practices. That is not to say that all religions are equal in this regard.[17] However, in its capacity for violence, no religion can even come close to the legacy of Darwinism, whose atheology is responsible for tens of millions of murders.[18] There is nothing remotely like it anywhere else in the history of religion.

However, unlike the Inquisition, there is no possible appeal to contradiction in what the Church of Darwin taught and what its practitioners applied. The roots of racism, oppression, and murder are inherent in its creeds. If the fittest survive, it is normative for the strong to oppress the weak – an antithesis of Christian practice and its influence in civilized law. This is not to say that modern proponents of evolution believe in racism or genocide, or the murder of innocents. The horror of the Nazi death camps shook evolutionists from their historic positions. However, nothing within evolution itself offered any such restraint because such attitudes were foundational. Charles Darwin, himself, held that “At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage races throughout the world.”[19] Thomas Huxley (a.k.a, “Darwin’s Bulldog”) stated “No rational man, cognizant of the facts, believes that the average Negro is the equal, still less the superior, of the white man. [H]e will [not] be able to compete successfully with his bigger-brained and smaller-jawed rival, in a contest which is to be carried on by thoughts and not by bites.”[20] As regards racism and genocide, modern evolutionists are thankfully inconsistent with logical deductions from evolutionary creeds and with evolution's founders. Christianity stands in stark contrast, declaring that all men are of one race physically,[21] and in Christ.[22]

A Matter of Faith
Religions have certain articles which they take on faith and without conclusive evidence. For example, Christianity believes in a God that is spirit and cannot be seen in the ordinary sense. We believe it because we have been told so – that is, we believe on the basis of authority. For that matter, much of what all persons believe, they believe by authority. For example, most of us believe in electrons, the rotation of the earth, its orbit around the sun, etc., without ever having independently verified these via sensory perception or independent investigation. That is, we have placed our faith in an authority. An important reason Christians believe the Bible to be the word of God is because where we can verify the Bible, we find it to be highly accurate. That is, as to matters of history, genealogy, linguistics, geography, fulfilled prophecy, anthropology, etc., the Bible has shown itself to be highly accurate, even with the minor corruptions we have in today’s copies.[23] That is, Christian faith is an informed faith, not a blind faith. In the case of evolution, the opposite is true.

Evolution demands tens of thousands of transitional forms, yet the fossil record has yielded none unequivocally. The fossil record shows us that various kinds of creatures appear suddenly and fully formed without any transition between them. Indeed, advances in microbiology all but rule out even the possibility of transitional forms. That is, transitional forms appear to be formally impossible, even by conjecture, due to heretofore unimagined complexities found in even the “simplest” life forms and unbridgeable gulfs betwixt them.[24] The evidence is so devastating, even Francis Crick, co-founder of the DNA double helix no longer believes in undirected evolution.[24]

No evidence exists for a pre-biotic soup, or an atmosphere that was any different from our present one, or a different kind of earth than we know today. Evolution demands all of these but obtains none of them, and ultimately reduces to unsupported conjecture and metaphysics. Judging by the hostile evidence, the only reason to believe in evolution appears to be to avoid believing in a personal God who will hold us all accountable at the judgment seat of Christ for our actions now. Unlike the informed faith of Christianity, the faith of evolution is blind, impotent, reactionary, and irrational.

The Conclusion of the Matter
So what is the conclusion of the matter.
1. Evolution is a religion, having all its attributes including
___a. creedal statements,
___b. iconography,
___c. metaphysical beliefs,
___d. religious stories, and
___e. competition with Christianity on a religious basis.

2. It is not scientific because
___a. it consists mainly of special pleadings that are neither testable, repeatable, nor falsifiable,
___b. it lacks evidence, and
___c. is contradicted by living fossils and well established principles of kinetics, equilibrium, and thermodynamics. These establish you-to-goo devolution, not goo-to-you evolution

3. It is philosophically untenable and formally false, requiring effects without a cause and other self-destructing metaphysics.

4. It is demonstrably racist and genocidal as shown by its historical record and by logical deductions from its creedal statements and paradigms.

5. It requires a blind and irrational faith.

So then the conclusion of the matter is that evolution is not science, but a religion, and in that matter, grossly inferior to Christianity.

[1]According to agnostic, Michael Denton, “every aspect of evolutionary theory is being debated with an intensity which has rarely been seen recently in any other branch of science.” Denton, Michael, Evolution, A Theory in Crisis, Adler & Adler, 1986.

[2]In Greek, Protozoa literally means “first life.”

[3]The 1953 Urey/Miller experiment, proved that biologists could make amino acids from a mythological atmosphere, but little else (http://www.answersingenesis.org/docs2001/0105news.asp ). Nonetheless, it has been heralded as proof of chemical evolution. My college biology professor even went so far as to say that Stanley L. Miller was God. Hubert P. Yockey, the author of Information Theory and Molecular Biology, put it this way: “Although at the beginning the paradigm was worth consideration, now the entire effort in the primeval soup paradigm is self-deception on the ideology of its champions.” Yockey, Hubert P., Information Theory and Molecular Biology , p 336, Cambridge University Press, UK, 1992, as reported at http://www.answersingenesis.org/docs/3972.asp .

[4]With respect to now discredited Java man, two human skulls were found in the same vicinity by the same discoverer and downplayed for more than 30 years. The later Selanka expedition discredited Java man as a human ancestor. Yet, Time magazine still went ahead with its published cover story “How Man Began,” citing Java man as a bona fide link in evolutionary history. For details, see Hanegraaph, Hank, “The Face the Demonstrates the Farce of Evolution,” W Publishing Group, Nashville, TN, 1998.

[5] Archaeopteryx was immediately hailed as a flying species intermediate between lizards and birds. Later evidence showed clearly, however, that archaeopteryx was a full-fledged bird and nothing of a missing link.

Pithecanthropus erectus a.k.a. homo erectus a.k.a. Java man, is an example of another famous distortion. With so many references in the literature, one would think that such fossils abound, though they do not. In the case of Java man, it comprised nothing more than a piece of skullcap and three teeth. A year and fifty feet later, a thighbone was added to the concocted assemblage, and voila – Java man. Such scarcity of evidence is the rule.

[6] For example, pro-avis is an invention of evolutionists. It is the supposed link between lizard and birds, yet it is pure conjecture without a shred of evidence.

The entire pictorial anthropoid series ubiquitous to most high school and college biology classrooms is fantasy.

Many of us have also seen embryos of various species and marveled at the similarity between fish, rabbits, frogs, and humans, for example. Unfortunately, these famous drawings were deliberate frauds. Many will be surprised to know that the frauds were publicly exposed in 1911 but still taught long afterward.

Piltdown man was another deliberate fraud. Such frauds are inexcusable and should be obvious to anyone skilled in the art if indeed such art were really science.

[7]This is likely an apocryphal story. For a different version see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turtles_all_the_way_down.

[8] “The concept of the continuity of nature has existed in the mind of man, never in the facts of nature. In a very real sense, therefore, advocacy of the doctrine of continuity has always necessitated a retreat from pure empiricism, and contrary to what is widely assumed by evolutionary biologists today, it has always been the anti-evolutionists, not the evolutionists, in the scientific community who have stuck rigidly to the facts and adhered to a more strictly empirical approach.” (Ibid 1, pp 353-354).

[9]Virtually every book on evolution for the lay market seems to go out of its way to denigrate God. For example, Dawkins makes the point that “To explain the origin of the DNA/protein machine by invoking a supernatural Designer is to explain precisely nothing for it leaves unexplained the origin of the Designer.” p 141, Dawkins, Richard, The Blind Watchmaker, W.W. Norton & Co., New York, 1986.

Similarly, Gould remarks that “If God had designed a beautiful machine to reflect his wisdom and power, surely he would not have used a collection of parts generally fashioned for other purposes. Orchids were not made by an ideal engineer; they are jury-rigged from a limited set of available components.” p20, Gould, Stephen Jay, The Pandas Thumb: More Reflections in Natural History, W.W. Norton & Co., New York, 1992.

To these I will reply briefly. Dawkins remark is absurd on its face and a non sequitur. God is an eternally existing and Necessary Being. Dawkins alternative requires an infinite regress of material causes and is formally impossible.

With respect to Gould’s argument from inferiority, I would humbly suggest that he is in no position to critique the Designer of the orchid considering that he has not designed any life forms lately. In my experience, most biologists are notoriously poor engineers, and understand little about the principles of economy and optimization. “Jury rigged” is nothing but a gross distortion when we consider that the orchid, like all life, requires self-assembling molecular machinery for effecting its own production and self-replication, and such is accomplished with a ribosome weighing less than 0.0000000000000001 of a gram. (see Denton, Ibid 1).

[10]Matthew 14.19.

[10a] Matthew 4.19, Mark 1.17.

[11]To again quote Denton “… the decline in religious belief can probably be attributed more to the propagation and advocacy by the intellectual and scientific community of the Darwinian version of evolution than to any other single factor.” Ibid 1, p 66.

[12] http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/11/152005a.asp

[13] http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04543c.htm

[14] http://www.bede.org.uk/inquisition.htm

[15] 2 Peter 3.15

[16] Matthew 4.6

[17] For example, Islam is a religion without clear ethics, see Sproul, R.C., and Saleeb, Abdul, “The Dark Side of Islam,” Crossway Books, Wheaton, Illinois, 2003

[18] The communist and fascist regimes of the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, China, and Cambodia amassed 54 million murders, collectively, from 1915 to 1979 according to Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Milwaukee WI. All of these despots embraced evolution, Darwin, and atheism as a fundamental tenets of their ideology. According to Raymond Hall, “Darwin’s Impact – The Bloodstained Legacy of Evolution,” http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v27/i2/darwin.asp, Karl Marx, Leon Trotsky, Joseph Stalin, and Adolph Hitler to name several, were all converts to the Church of Darwin. Marx wrote that Darwin’s book ‘contain[ed] the basis” for communism and Lenin was his disciple. Leon Trotsky claimed that Darwin stood “…like a mighty doorkeeper at the entrance to the temple of the universe.” Joseph Stalin became an atheist after embracing Darwin. Adolph Hitler viewed Darwinism as a seminal reason for extermination of Jews and other “inferiors.” Mao Tse Tung held Darwin in high esteem as one of his favorite authors.

[19] Darwin, Charles Robert, “The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex”, Chapter 6, Elibron Classics, UK, 2005.

[20] Huxley, Thomas H., “Lay Sermons, Addresses and Reviews,” p. 20., Appleton, New York, 1871.

[21] Romans, Chapter 5.

[22] Galatians 3.28.

[23] The principle of inerrancy extends only to the autographa – the original words penned by the apostles and prophets. Extant copies show minor variations and we know that some phrases have been inserted at later dates that were not part of the original manuscripts. Probably the most famous interpolation is the addendum to the Lord’s prayer “For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever, amen.”

However, in no case do such variations subvert any tenet of Christianity. Though there is some uncertainty in word usage, we know with greater certainty the words of the New Testament than of those of much later works (e.g., the writings of William Shakespeare came more than a millennium after the New Testament and are less certain than the New Testament text). Most ancient works such as Homer’s writings and historical writings of the first century or earlier have only one or several surviving manuscript copies. In contrast, the New Testament has roughly a thousand manuscript copies in whole or in part, separated in the extreme by roughly a millennia, and accurate nearly word for word, as well as many external citations. There is nothing like the manuscript evidence for the Bible in any other historical document, and it is not without warrant that one may say that its integrity is something of a miracle.

By way of contrast, consider the Book of Mormon. It comprised hundreds of errors, distortions, plagiarisms, anachronisms, and contradictions. It was revised numerous times by the Mormon church including approximately 4000 word changes. Even in its present "corrected" form it is unsupported or flatly contradicted by modern archaeology, geography, and history. For documentation, see Martin, Walter, Kingdom of the Cults, Bethany House Publishers, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1997.

[24] Ibid, 1.

[25] Francis Crick alternatively advocates “directed panspermia,” which holds that the seeds of life were deliberately spread by extraterrestrial intelligence, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panspermia.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


The God of Christianity is God in three persons – Father, Son, and Spirit. The God of Christianity is compatible with a God of all possible perfections (love, truth, mercy, etc.) and therefore worthy of our praise, worship, and adoration. However, god-in-one-person is not worthy of worship. Likewise, there have been historical conceptions of God. However, none but the God of Christianity is worthy to be loved, worshiped, and adored.[*]

Brief Definitions of Various Conceptions of God.
Historically, there have been seven major ways of thinking about God.

D1 Theism – There is a single ontological entity – God – who possess all possible perfections including love, wisdom, (see previous post – A Proof of God – for a fuller definition). These include love and caring for His creation, and therefore, He is involved in the daily affairs of men and nations.

D2 Deism – there is a single personality who does not care about nor involve himself in the daily affairs of men. He set the worlds in motion, he is responsible for a rational universe, but he does not now intervene in worldly affairs.

D3 Pantheism – All is god. We are part of god in life, and in a different way, in death – god is not an individual but a cosmic concept or entity.

D4 Panentheism – god is in everything. It is in the rock, in the water, in people and in dogs for example. It is the spiritual force behind all matter and life but not a personal entity. “God” includes the world in himself. It is a changeable being, growing in time.

D5 Polytheism – there are many gods of lesser and greater power vying for control of the universe.

D6 Agnosticism – God may or may not exist, but either I don’t know (soft agnosticism) or I can’t know (hard agnosticism).

D7 Atheism – there is no God.

A previous post showed that God exists and that He is worthy of our love, worship, praise, and adoration (see "A Proof of God"). He created time and all that is in the temporal universe. He is a single ontological being. This eliminates D3 through D7 and by reference, virtually all religions except for the monotheistic religions: Islam, Judaism, and Orthodox Christianity. However, Islam and historical deism (D2) assert that “God” is a single person, by His nature.[1] However, as we shall show, this is untenable.

P1 — “God” in one person is not God.
From D1, God is a being who possesses all perfections including love, wisdom, truth, etc. However, “god-in-one-person” is imperfect.

P1.1 Loneliness – For if god-in-one-person possesses love – a perfection – he had no one to share it with, at least before the creation of man. Then he was lonely. If he was lonely, he had need of others. Therefore, he lacks self-sufficiency. He does not possess all possible perfections. He is imperfect.

P1.2 Dependency – If god-in-one-person created man to accept and return his love and be its object, then he depends on man for his happiness. He needs man to accept and return his love. He is dependent and not self-sufficient. He is imperfect.

P1.3 Mutability – If man met his need for expressing and accepting love, god-in-one-person is mutable. For he has something – love – that he did not have before. What is mutable is not transcendent but changes with time and cannot transcend time. If god-in-one-person is mutable, then he is imperfect.

P1.4 Lovelessness – If he was not lonely, he did not have love, for love must be expressed and love unexpressed leads to longing and loneliness. If he lacks love then he is imperfect.

P1.5 Narcissism – If god-in-one-person, being one person, loves only himself then he is narcissistic. If he is narcissistic then he is imperfect.

In any case, god-in-one-person is imperfect. Therefore, by D1, god-in-one-person is not God.

P2 – god-in-one-person is unworthy of worship, praise, or adoration. He cannot be God for he does not possess all possible perfections. Therefore, god-in-one-person is unworthy of worship, praise, or adoration.

D8 The triune God of Christianity is one in essence and three in persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, coeternal and co-distinct.[2]

D8.1 God is eternally loving. There is a subject-object distinction among the members of the Godhead – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – and mutual adoration. The Father loves the Son,[3] the Son loves the Father,[4] the members of the Godhead coexist in eternal perfection.

D8.2 God created man according to His eternal purpose, His good pleasure, and His lovingkindness.[5]

D8.3. God did not create man out of need, nor had He any necessity for man to accept and return His love for He is eternally self-sufficient. But according to His great mercy, God created man to enjoy Him forever.[5]

P3 – The triune God of Christianity (D8) is perfectly consistent with D1. From the foregoing, the triune God suffers from none of the logical problems or contradictions inherent in the concept of god-in-one-person. The triune God is perfectly fulfilled, wholly self-sufficient, immutable, and loving. He possesses all perfections. The triune God of the Bible is perfectly consistent with D1.

[*]In fact, Christians would view the God of Old Testament (Jewish canon) as praiseworthy since they believe that He is the same God of three persons that inhabits the New Testament of the Bible. Although the trinity is not fully illuminated in the Jewish canon, God in more than one person is specifically noted there (see for example, Genesis 1.26, Isaiah 6.3,8; 11.2,3; 42.1; 48.16).

[1]The Koran specifically denies the trinity and further states that Allah is singular in person: “believe therefore in Allah and his apostles, and say not, “Three.” Desist, it is better for you; Allah is only one god; far be it from his glory that he should have a son...” [4.171].

[2]Triunity is the orthodox Christian position and the only logically allowable choice the Bible presents. See for example Mt 28.19, 2 Co 13.14; see also Ex 20.2 with Jn 20.28 and Ac 5.3-4; see also Mt 23.63, 64 and Jn 5:18. Many more passages could be quoted as well as various orthodox Christian creeds, confessions, and catechisms, such as the Apostle’s Creed, the Heidelberg and Westminster Catechisms, etc.

[3]Jn 3.35, 5.20, 8.54, 10.15,17.

[4]Mt 6.9, 11.25; Lk 11.13; Jn 8.49, 10.15, 14.13, 31; 17.5.

[5]These are affirmed in historic Christian creeds and the Biblical text itself. As a representative example of the latter, consider the Westminster Confession of Faith.

Thursday, January 05, 2006


Neither the scientific method nor statistics requires formally unknowable events. Random error is the result of physical realities and follows logically via mathematical rigor. In no case does the concept of randomness demand or allow for uncaused effects.

The Scientific Method
The scientific method is a systematic search for regularity confined to subject matter that is observable, testable, repeatable, and falsifiable.[1] This much seems uncontroversial among scientists of various stripes. However, the reason for this normative view differs dramatically among theists and non-theists. Theists believe that that an all-wise, all-powerful, and rational Creator – in a word, God – formed the heavens and the earth. Modern theists therefore expect that God’s works unmistakably bear the mark of their Author. Since God is rational, so is the universe. God knows His work certainly and intimately, and the consequence of every event that may or may not transpire[2] is completely determined and foreknown in His mind. This is the theistic scientist’s raison d’etre for science, substantiated by God’s word.[3] Historians generally credit the origin of the scientific method to Francis Bacon and Christianity.[4]

Non-theists (e.g., materialists) admit to no transcendent cause beyond the physical universe. As such, they believe that strict rules (physics) govern the universe, but without any a priori reason for such a belief, only a pragmatic view that the scientific method corroborates their experience. Today some advocates overstate the scientific method as a philosophy about everything, which it certainly is not.[5] Notwithstanding, for those subjects that science is qualified to speak about, it has much to say.

All scientists believe in a cause-and-effect universe, otherwise, there is no point to any aspect of a scientific investigation. Without cause and effect, observation is futile because it correlates with nothing in particular. Experimentation is pointless if effects have no causes. For the same reason, repeating an experiment would have no confirmatory value. If there is no meaning to observation, testing, or repetition, then nothing is falsifiable or provable. In short, science subsumes a cause-and-effect universe and cannot exist without it.

A deterministic universe
Despite the inconsistency, and in contrast to a cause-and-effect (or a deterministic) universe, some scientists theorize that absolute knowability is impossible in principle. This is a self-defeating argument because it makes a certain and absolute truth claim that one can certainly never know absolute truth. Some base their claim (incorrectly) on scientific postulates of uncertainty, randomness, or chance (used synonymously here)[6] as embodied in the statistical sciences. As I will show, this is a result of an incorrect or equivocal understanding of the statistical concept of randomness.

On Impossibility
Some things are impossible even for God. For example, it is impossible for God to lie[7] or to err[8] due to His very nature. However, if it is impossible in this same way for God to determine the outcome of a random trial then God cannot be all-knowing. Once we admit that there is knowledge about the universe that God cannot apprehend, then history as a whole is impossible to predict, even for God. The theist will at once see the seriousness of this accusation and the conflict with God’s revealed will.[9] I shall refer to the concept of something being unknowable in principle as that which is formally unknowable.

In a book length treatment, Sproul[10] has pointed out that the idea of randomness or chance as a causative agent is philosophically impossible and relies on equivocation of the term chance. As Sproul notes, when a person says I met my spouse by chance, this does not imply an uncaused union, but an unanticipated one. Neither partner spontaneously appears on the scene. Planes, trains, and automobiles transport them to their destination. They are there for a reason – perhaps a business meeting or conference. Nothing about the union is uncaused, but because neither party is clairvoyant, they are delightfully surprised to meet one another. As I will show, neither may an antagonist take refuge in the formal statistical concept of random error as a device to prove the existence of a formally unknowable event.

On random error
At this point, we must ask, if the scientific method presumes a rational cause-and-effect (deterministic) universe, then what is random error and how is it compatible with science? We presume to live in a universe governed by rules and laws, i.e., physics. Yet, experience shows that whenever we repeat a well-executed, well-planned experiment we obtain slightly different results each time. Scientists call this experimental error; statisticians term it random error; but how can random error be compatible with a cause-and-effect universe?

We do indeed live in a universe governed by rules, law, and physics, but we never perform exactly the same experiment twice. We cannot set our input conditions perfectly. We cannot measure our output exactly. As a practical matter, we fail to account fully for all possible influential factors. As an example, let us consider the timed flight of a ball dropped from a given height.

We may derive an equation from Newtonian physics such as t = √(h/g) where t is the time, h is the height, and g is the acceleration due to gravity (9.8 m/s^2). In other words, if we drop a ball from 9.8 meters then it will take 1 second to hit the floor [t = √(9.8/9.8 m/s^2) = 1 s]. A ball dropped from 39.2 meters will take 2 seconds [√39.2/9.8 = 2]. But in fact, when we perform an experiment, we never obtain exactly the theoretical result. Why not? The equation is wrong! It only accounts for gravitational acceleration. It does not account for errors in measurement such as when I start and stop the stopwatch, or exactly when I release the ball, or other factors such as air friction, variations in the local gravitational constant, the Corriolis effect (rotational effect of the earth), wind currents and air movements, gravitational effects of nearby bodies, relativistic effects, etc. There is a good reason for not including these in the model. Their effects are real but vanishingly small for the matter at hand. To account for them, we can lump all of these in an error term (e). Then our model becomes t = √(h/g) + e.

What can we deduce about e? Let us presume that e aggregates many factors, and that on average, some of these factors slightly decrease our time, and some of them slightly lengthen it. Then e will distribute around some mean according to a normal (bell-shaped) distribution. This is what we call random error. Why can we expect a normal distribution? Because aggregating responses from identically distributed factors gives a bell-shaped curve as matter of a mathematical certainty. The theorem is known as the central limit theorem of statistics.

However, never does this imply that a ball’s motion is uncaused, or that God would somehow be confused about the time of flight for trial. Therefore, randomness does not mean unpredictable in principle or formally unknowable. It would be better to say that out of ignorance and convenience we must model the universe as a stochastic system comprising deterministic and random factors. By a stochastic universe I mean a universe with significant influential factors which we account for individually (so-called deterministic factors) and a large number of less influential factors which we account for in aggregate (so-called random factors) by means of the probability distribution and its properties. In no case does a stochastic universe imply a causeless or formally unknowable universe.

The analogy of the random number generator
At this point, a useful analogy is the random number generator; the phrase itself is oxymoronic. Generation implies a definite numerical procedure. Random, at least colloquially, implies lack of a formal rule or procedure. Which is it? Knowing the actual algorithm and starting number (seed) of a random number generator permits one to predict the “random” number sequence with absolute certainty. For this reason, the output sequence from such generators is termed a pseudorandom sequence. In the author’s opinion, there is no qualitative distinction. Notwithstanding, one may regard statistically random events (e.g., a coin toss) as completely determined by physics (analogous to the algorithm) and the initial conditions (initial velocity and rotational speed to name two – analogous to the seed). In either case, the ignorance of finite beings makes the outcome unanticipated – one may even say unknowable in a practical sense – but it does not render the matter formally unknowable.

The critical equivocation
Therefore, statistical randomness is equivocated to mean without rule or cause, and this without justification because the normal probability distribution requires order and rule to come to be. In conclusion, the science of statistics in no way demands a formally unknowable universe. The statistical concepts of randomness are the result of the aggregated contribution of many independent causes acting according to physical rules and mathematical dogma to generate a repeatable aggregate behavior – the normal probability distribution. This is as far away from anarchy as a thing can be.

[1] One may remember these four pillars of the scientific method with the acronym “only trust reliable facts.” The method has grown to include a hypothesis/validation cycle, a documentation/publication cycle, and inductive and deductive reasoning. Such a definition of science, pragmatic though it be, has been under challenge for some time, and is no longer fashionable. In my estimation, this is due to a self-defeating denial of absolutes and a confusion of normative science with the politics of science. See for example, Kuhn, Thomas, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, University of Chicago Press, 1962.

[2] See for example 1 Sam 23:11-23, Matt 11:21, 23, and 2 Kings 13:19 for examples of conditional events that God knew were conditionally possible but not actual.

[3] Proverbs 25.2

[4] The Greeks were in a position to develop the scientific method, but were unwilling to consider empirical verification of their philosophy. A polytheistic worldview embraced a universe governed by caprice and whim. This appears to have been a major impediment toward development of science as we know it. Historically, the scientific method would have to wait for belief in a rational universe. By the sixteenth century, the spread of Christianity provided such a worldview. Historians generally credit Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) with the development of the scientific method, emphasizing experimentation and inductive reasoning in addition to deduction from general principles.

[5] The idea that science is explanatory of everything is a philosophical view more properly called scientism.

[6] Although there are technical and mathematical distinctions among these terms, all issue from the concept of an underlying probability distribution. Therefore, for the points I wish to emphasize in this paper, I shall treat the terms as synonymous.

[7] Titus 1.2

[8] Gen 18.25

[9] For example, predictive prophecy would be reduced to probable but not strictly certain events. In contrast, the scripture boldly declares “I declare the end from the beginning.”

[10]Sproul, R.C., Not a Chance: The Myth of Chance in Modern Science and Cosmology, Baker Books, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1994.

A PROOF OF GOD/ J. Colannino

God exists. He is worthy of our love, worship, praise, and adoration. This follows from a single undeniable premise.

D1, God – God is an infinite Being such that there is no greater, possessing all possible perfections,[1] at least.[2] By perfections, I mean noble attributes like wisdom, truth, love, mercy, justice, knowledge, and so forth, in the highest possible degree. That is, with respect to knowledge God is omniscient. With respect to power, God is omnipotent. With respect to existence, He is omnipresent, being self-sufficient and transcending time and space. Collectively, these perfections may be referred to as “good” while “evil” refers to their lack. Such a Being is worthy of praise, adoration, and worship.[3]

P1. I exist. Denying my existence is self-contradictory; it requires a “self” to do the denying.[4]Therefore, I exist. This is self-evident and undeniable.[5]

P2. Now exists. I can only act now. I cannot act in the past, the moment is gone and my opportunity to act is lost. I cannot act in the future. The moment has not yet arrived. But I am acting. I am affirming my existence. Therefore, now exists.

P3. Time began. If time had no beginning then no amount of time would be sufficient to arrive at now, even if the universe were infinitely old.[6] But now exists. Therefore, time began.[7]

P4. Time has a cause. That which has a beginning has a cause. Time exists. Time began. Therefore, time has a cause.[8]

P5. Time cannot be self-caused. Time could not have been self-caused, for then it would have had to precede itself – to have existed before it became existent, a logical impossibility. Therefore, time cannot be self-caused.

P6. The cause of time must transcend time. One cannot logically speak of anything “preceding” time, for precession and succession denote order in time – without time, they have no meaning. Nothing could have happened “before” time to cause time to spring into existence – without time, “before” has no meaning. Without time, one can only speak of a cause transcending time – a cause that eternally exists. Therefore, the cause of time must transcend time.

P7. There is an Uncaused Cause that transcends time. A cause that transcends time must eternally exist.[9] A cause must precede its effect, but a cause transcending time can have no antecedent. Therefore, the cause of time is uncaused and eternally existent. Therefore, there is an Uncaused Cause that transcends time.

P8. The Uncaused Cause possesses all possible perfections. Love, truth, wisdom, etc. – these are perfections. They exist now. Love springs from love, truth from truth, wisdom from wisdom, etc. But no cause in time can precede itself. Therefore, perfections are not temporal but exist as attributes of the Uncaused Cause.


By D1 a Being that possesses all possible perfections is God. Q.E.D., God exists and is worthy of our love, praise, and adoration.

O1 — Such noble attributes are ambiguous.
What one man considers noble another may consider repugnant. Therefore D1 is ambiguous and the proof is void.
R1.1 – A fair evaluation will show that there is no confusion about what constitutes a noble attribute. Consider the antonyms of D1: foolishness, falsehood, hate, vindictiveness, caprice, ignorance and so forth. Can anyone seriously suggest that these are noble attributes?
R1.2 – If so, I am justified to abandon them to their folly. But for the sake of the belligerent among whom I once belonged, consider only three: omniscience, omnipotence, and omnipresence. Those are unarguably unambiguous. They are also sufficient to distinguish God from all pretenders and to validate all the arguments presented herewith.

O2 — Such perfections are self-contradictory. For example, one cannot be both merciful and just. If a crime deserves punishment then mercy will excuse the crime at the expense of justice. If one punishes the crime as justice demands, then where is mercy? Therefore, D1 defines nothing and the proof is void.
R2.1 – There is nothing contradictory in mercy and justice nor among any noble attributes. Can a judge justly release a condemned murderer to society for the sake of mercy? No, he cannot. Notwithstanding, is it a merciful act to release an unrepentant murderer into general society? Is it merciful to the victims, to society at large, to his potential future victims? No, indeed, the judge is being both just and quite merciful to these.
R2.2 – Moreover, the analogy considers only a human judge. God is able to bestow justice and mercy in ways that finite creatures cannot. For example, the thief on the cross is an example of both mercy and justice.[11] The murderous thief died a condemned man, guilty of his crime; he satisfied the law with his death. Yet God admitted this repentant man to his kingdom in an act of mercy. If the thief’s punishment was excessive, an infinite God can rectify even this.
Therefore, such perfections are not contradictory.

O3 — Perhaps not everything that has a beginning has a cause. What if some things (or one thing) began without a cause? Then time could be one of those things. This refutes P4. Just because we have no examples of things beginning without a cause does not mean that it is impossible. Why can’t something happen without a reason?
R3 – On what basis does one believe in something without example? How does something that never existed come to exist without a cause for its existence? It cannot cause itself, for it does not yet exist; and it cannot be caused to exist, for it has no cause. Then there is no logical option but that it does not exist. Q.E.D., something cannot come into existence nor begin without a cause.

O4 – Wisdom, love, truth, etc. do not exist now, at least not in their perfect form. Therefore, P8 is false and God is not shown to be perfect.
– How does one know that perfect wisdom, love, truth, and the like do not exist? One can claim that these perfections do not exist only by referring to a perfect standard of wisdom, love, and truth and contrasting the imperfect with its perfect referent. Evidently they exist, at the very least, in the mind of the one denying their existence. Therefore, the denial is self-defeating.[12] Wisdom, love, and truth, etc. do exist now.

O5 – Wisdom, love, truth, etc. are eternal in and of themselves. Therefore, P8 is false. God need not exist in order for wisdom, love and truth to exist.
R5 – Wisdom, love, and truth etc. are the domain of sentient creatures and cannot even be imagined to exist apart from them. Therefore, they do not exist in and of themselves. Indeed, if they have existed eternally, they can only have existed as attributes of an eternal sentient Being.

O6 – Wisdom, love, truth, etc. exist only in the human mind[13] and do not predate it. Therefore, P8 is false. Wisdom, love, truth, etc. are not attributes of the Eternal God.
R6.1 – If wisdom and the like exist only in the human mind, then wisdom began when the human mind began. If the human mind began in time then it was created by God who is the Uncaused Cause, or else it began as some process in time. But all temporal processes have been shown to begin with the Uncaused Cause. Therefore, the Uncaused Cause is the cause of the human mind; He is possessor of wisdom, love, truth, etc.
R6.2 – Now, the Uncaused Cause either created such perfections, or they exist as His eternal attributes. If they were created, then they had a beginning in time. But this is not possible. For an Uncaused Cause who did not possess wisdom could not create it, for the act of creating wisdom is a wise act. The act of creating love is a loving act, and so forth. So then, all perfections must be eternal attributes of the Uncaused Cause. Therefore, the Uncaused Cause possesses all possible perfections.

O7 – Good can come from evil. Wisdom, love, and truth can spring from foolishness, hate, and falsehood. Therefore, P8 is false. From the foolishness of others I may learn to avoid their mistakes and so gain wisdom. From my mistreatment as a child I may resolve to treat my child differently and so become loving. Observing the falsehood of others and its consequences, I may resolve to tell the truth, and so become truthful.
R7.1 – An answer to the problem of evil. Far from disproving the existence of God, the objection is consistent with the notion that evil can be used by a good and loving God who is so wise and so loving so as to bring about good no matter how malevolent the actor or how pernicious his evil. Indeed, this is one solution to the so-called problem of evil[14] (the notion that evil cannot be allowed by a good God).
R7.2 – The superiority of good over evil. The objection proves that wisdom, love, and truth (i.e., good) are greater than foolishness, hate, and falsehood (i.e., evil), for the good overcomes the evil and outlasts it.
R7.3 – The self-conflicting nature of the objection. If the reader honestly believes that ignoble attributes beget noble ones, on what basis does he oppose the former? Let that decide the issue.
R7.4 – The objection is a non sequitur. A careful analysis of the objection will show that wisdom, love, and truth do not come from the person exhibiting these imperfect behaviors. On the contrary, it is the wise, loving, and true person who exhibits goodness despite his exposure to the contrary.

O8 – An evil person can repent and become good. So, someone who was formerly evil has now become good. Evil has morphed into goodness. This refutes P8 which claims good derives from good (and ultimately from God) who possesses all possible perfections (goodness).
– The repentance of an evil man does not refute P8. Evil men can repent. But there are two tacit assumptions in O8. The first is that the evil man’s repentance is strictly internal with no aid from a righteous God. The second is that an evil man has only evil within him and no good within him. However, genuine repentance is not an act of evil. The repentant man may receive aid from a merciful God leading to repentance. Others have claimed that he has enough good to recognize his evil and repent.[15] In either case, good has overcome evil, evil has not begotten good.

O9 – Evil exists now, therefore God is evil. P8 states that wisdom, love, and truth, etc. exist eternally and are therefore attributes of God. But the converse analogy is that evil exists now and it has always existed. Therefore, evil is an eternal attribute of God. God is evil. Predicated on this objection is the next.
O10 – God cannot be both good and evil, therefore, God’s existence is a logical impossibility. P8 proves God is good and O9 asserts that God is evil. If both are true then we have a logical impossibility. God cannot be both good and evil, for what is good is not evil, and what is evil cannot be good. Therefore, God is a logically impossible being. He cannot exist.
R9.1 – Perhaps evil has not always existed. The unproven assumption in O9 is that evil has always existed. But this is far from proven. Indeed the contrary has been affirmed from mankind’s earliest historical records, legends, and myths.[16] Man’s history contains the affirmation that there was a time when evil was not. Therefore, it is presumptive to suggest that evil has always existed. Indeed, it can be disproved (R9.2).
R9.2 – Good, an attribute of God, is necessarily eternal; not so with evil. Evil does exist now. But evil is the absence of good just as dark is the absence of light. Logically, one can arrive at darkness or dimness by obscuring all or some of the light, respectively. However, darkness – the absence of light - cannot beget any amount of light whatsoever. One can arrive at evil in a good universe by obscuring some good. One cannot arrive at good from evil – the absence of good. Only a greater good can thwart evil and cause good to come about (R7.1-R7.4). Evil subsumes some good to obscure while good does not require evil to exist. P8 shows that good is eternal. But the obscuring of good is a process in time. Therefore, good is eternal but evil had a beginning.[17] Therefore, evil has not always existed.
R10 – God’s existence requires no logical impossibilities. D1 affirms that God is good. O9 presumes that God must be evil, but R9.1 and R9.2 have rebutted that presumption. Therefore, there is no unresolvable dilemma regarding the logic of God’s existence.

[1]A God of all possible perfections was presumed by Anselm of Canterbury, 1033-1109, in his so-called ontological argument.

[2]I say “at least” because God, being infinite, cannot be described in any finite way. This includes a finite number of text characters as in this paper, or in the Bible even as inspired by God in the original languages penned by the prophets and apostles were we to have the autographa. There are some things we do not know about God now (1 Cor 2.9) and there are some things we will never know about Him (Rev 19.12). Thus, the definition is necessarily incomplete, but nonetheless sufficient. It distinguishes God from all other possible beings.

[3]What I do not mean is that God can be “supremely ignorant” or an “incontrovertible liar” or any other such oxymoron; for ignorance and duplicity are not noble attributes. The structure of human language is such that it is always possible to couple a depravity with a superlative; this is an artifact of language and a propensity of man, not an attribute of God.

[4]Restatement of Rene Descartes’ now famous maxim “Cogito ergo sum — I think, therefore, I am.”

[5]Some radical skeptics deny the certainty or knowability of anything, especially God. Despite their protests, no other possible and logical conclusion may be drawn about one’s self-existence except that it is so. Notwithstanding, even the radical skeptic is forced to admit that there is virtually nothing of which one may be more certain than his self-existence, even if he is not completely certain of it. Therefore, the radical skeptic is a hypocrite, basing all other beliefs on less certain knowledge yet refusing to believe in his own existence except on the condition of absolute certainty. He is wrong on both counts and his behavior is inexcusable. For the radical skeptic faces the self-destructing dilemma that he is absolutely certain that he cannot be absolutely certain.

[6]For this proof as well as a brief summary of scientific evidence for this position see Geisler, N.L., “Systematic Theology, Vol 1, pp 27, 28, ISBN 0-7642-2551-0, Bethany House, Bloomington MN, 2002.

[7]This is not equivalent to saying “there was a time when time was not.” That is a self-contradictory and inextricably temporal argument; “was,” “time,” and “when” all convey temporal ideas that have no meaning except in a temporal universe. In contrast, “Time began,” refers to the creation of time, defining its first moment.

[8]The development that proceeds is basically a variant of the cosmological argument developed by Bonaventure (c. 1217-1274) and Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274).

[9]That which transcends time is necessarily existent eternally. For whatever is not eternally existing has either a beginning or an end. And whatever has a beginning or an end is not transcendent of time. Likewise, whatever transcends time has neither beginning nor end. Therefore, that which transcends time is necessarily existent eternally.

[10]This is essentially the argument of Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274). See Summa Theologica, 1a 4.1,3.

[11]Lk 23.39-43.

[12]This is standard apologetic fare. For example, see Geisler, Kreeft, or Sproul as cited herewith.

[13]This objection derives from Kant, who more generally espoused the inability of knowing of anything as it objectively exists. Kant, I., “A Critique of Pure Reason,” translated by Meiklejohn, J.M., ISBN 1-4043-0127-5, IndyPublish.com, McLean, VA.
ISBN 1-4043-0126-5.

[14]Kreeft, P. and Tacelli, R.K., “Handbook of Christian Apologetics,” p 128 f, ISBN 0-8308-1774-3, Intervarsity Press, Downer’s Grove, Illinois, 1994.

[15]The former position is held by Calvinists while the latter is held by Arminians. Both are schools of Christian theism. For a fair comparison and contrast of the two positions see Steele, D.N. and Thomas, C.C., “The Five Points of Calvinism Defined, Defended, Documented,” pp 16-19, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, Phillipsburg, New Jersey, 1963. However, the work is a Calvinistic apologetic.

[16]See for example Gn 1.31, also Ez 28.15, 16. Nor is the assertion confined to the Bible or Judeo-Christian heritage. Various pagan myths and legends, assert the same, e.g., the myth of Pandora’s Box. The concept of a sinless past is a very ancient one.

[17]Additional proofs are possible after establishing the divinity of Judeo-Christian scripture. See for example Sproul, R. C. et al, “Classical Apologetics,” esp. Section II, ISBN 0-310-44951-0, Zondervan Corp., Grand Rapids, MI, 1984, together with Ez 28:15 for example.