Friday, March 29, 2013

Wonders of Nature

As a Christian theist I believe that God created all the diversity of life on earth. Exactly HOW God created them I don't know. I'm open to all the possible ways God could have created life on earth, from a theistic evolutionary view [i.e. one extreme] all the way  to a young earth creationist view [the other extreme]. At the present time, I lean more toward the Old Earth Creationist views presented by the Reasons To Believe organization headed by Hugh Ross ( RTB's views seem to me to harmonize the Bible's teaching and the data from nature better than the alternatives.

In this post I'll be gradually collecting videos that show the wonders of God's creation in order to exhibit amazing apparent design in nature. Apparent design that I would content should be interpreted as evidence (not "proof") of actual design by an intelligent designer.

Arguments against intelligent design often point to apparent flaws or non-optimal design features. But if we're dealing with a Christian understanding of intelligent design, we have to factor in certain features of Christianity's understanding of God that will affect the evidence we see in nature. They include things like:

1. the effects that the Fall had on creatures.

2. in keeping with #1, the fact that in a world of change things tend to move from a more organized state to a less organized state. Therefore both DNA and designs will tend to get corrupted. That's why the overwhelming majority of mutations are harmful to creatures. This is why the the process of oxidation which produces rust on a car doesn't prove that the car wasn't design. The same thing goes for a flat tire or worn out break pads.

3. because of the Christian understanding of God's omniscience and omnisapience (attribute of possessing all wisdom) God's plans could account for apparent non-optimal designs. For example, if a predatory species that atheistic sceptics think has a design flaw were more optimally designed, then it might kill off too many prey too quickly and thereby affect an ecosystem in a detrimental way. Optimality of design would require knowledge of the purposes of the designer. The Christian God would  have been looking for what's optimal for each species in light of other species, and ecosystems, and changing environmental factors (e.g. ice ages, volcanic eruptions, meteor strikes, earthquakes, etc)  for the entire history of planet Earth in conjunction with His redemptive plan for mankind.

Having given those preliminary qualifications, I admit that theists have a tendency to commit the fallacy popularly called the argument from incredulity. This happens with a theists is unable to imagine how natural selection working on random mutation could account for a particular feature in nature and then makes a leap of logic in assuming that God's direct involvement is the only possible explanation. However, on the other hand, the naturalist must also realize that if the Christian God exists, then by His overarching comprehensive and meticulous providence, He could have guided seemingly natural processes to produce certain results.

The following videos will include amazing adaptations which, in my opinion, should cause naturalists to ponder the possibility that an intelligent designer may have be involved in their formation. Especially if the adaptations use principles that anticipate technological and scientific discoveries and innovations which we're only now possess in our modern world.

Here are the first few videos:

Raptor Force (by Nature on PBS)

Snakes That Fly (by National Geographic)

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