Apologetics Class 11-29-2015

Currently, we are reading the book Unsilenced: How to Voice the Gospel by James Boccardo.  It is a great book about evangelism that also includes some information about Apologetics.

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Hi All,

Very good class today. Since our reading was primarily on evolution, that was pretty much the whole content of what we spoke about!  We read from pages 158 – 163 in the book.  The author’s focus was primarily on the evidence of the DNA in all living things, so that is where we focused.  We started off by watching a 6 ½ minute video with John Lennox (professor of Mathematics at Oxford University in the U.K.).  The video was John’s response to a student’s question during a Q&A session at an event.  He talks primarily about DNA and the information contained therein.

I also handed out a paper copy of an article on “Mutations” from the web site “Darwinism Refuted”.  I would encourage you to read the whole thing if you get a chance.  Here is the section we focused on because the book reading (from the Unsilenced book) mentioned the “famous fruit fly experiment”:

Every effort put into “generating a useful mutation” has resulted in failure. For decades, evolutionists carried out many experiments to produce mutations in fruit flies, as these insects reproduce very rapidly and so mutations would show up quickly. Generation upon generation of these flies were mutated, yet no useful mutation was ever observed. The evolutionist geneticist Gordon Taylor writes thus:

Since the beginning of the twentieth century, evolutionary biologists have sought examples of useful mutations by creating mutant flies. But these efforts have always resulted in sick and deformed creatures. The left picture shows the head of a normal fruit fly, and the picture on the right shows the head of fruit fly with legs coming out of it, the result of mutation.  fly

It is a striking, but not much mentioned fact that, though geneticists have been breeding fruit-flies for sixty years or more in labs all round the world- flies which produce a new generation every eleven days-they have never yet seen the emergence of a new species or even a new enzyme.

After our Unsilenced book reading of the 6 pages, we used the following questions to drive our discussion:

  1. (pg. 158-160) Why does DNA give evidence that God exists?
  2. (pg. 159-160) In order for the first cell to replicate like Darwinists thought it did, what needed to happen with respect to DNA?  Why is that compelling evidence of intelligent design?
  3. (pg. 160) What critical thing is needed to get from a single cell to a more complex organism?
  4. (pg. 162) What is the “famous fruit fly experiment” and why doesn’t it prove Darwinian evolution?
  5. (pg. 162) The big idea to focus on is not just that there is a d_______, but w____ h_____ when you m____ H___.  Your job is not to d______ e______; it’s to l_____ p_____ to J_____ so that their sins can be f_________ and so that they can have e_____ l_____.
  6. (pg. 163) How did the conversation with the college microbiology student go?

It was a very good discussion.  During our conversation, several other topics came up:

  • Irreducible Complexity: http://www.conservapedia.com/Irreducible_complexity
  • Bacterial Flagellum: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRF0HeG-mhM
  • Blood Clotting: The function of the blood clotting system is to prevent the escape of blood from a damaged vessel. To do this, the blood has a special and very complex repair procedure in place. Once initiated by a cut, the first component in the process is activated, which in turn activates the next component, and so on, in a series of cumulative, mutually-dependent steps. This physiological chain of production, or cascade, results in the formation of a solid obstruction (a clot) in order to seal over the damage.  Some of the main components of the clotting cascade are the proteins fibrinogen, prothrombin, Stuart (anti-hemophilic) factor and proaccelerin. None of these are used for any other purpose in the blood. The system is very finely tuned to result in a repair process that achieves just the repair needed at just the right place and time to stop bleeding and begin the process of healing. Importantly, the process is also self-limiting to ensure that coagulation (clotting) of the entire blood supply does not occur.  The Intelligent Design advocate Michael Behe, in his book Darwin’s Black Box, has noted that the clotting cascade is an example of irreducible complexity. The removal or degradation of just one, any one, of the components or steps would cause the cascade to fail. Obviously this would have dire consequences for the organism. It is exceedingly difficult to see how the clotting cascade could have evolved, as any postulated simplified or ‘primitive’ version of the process would result in failure.
  • Micro-evolution vs. Macro-evolution: http://www.gotquestions.org/microevolution-macroevolution.html
  • Ben Stein / Richard Dawkins interview where he talks about aliens (here is a 2 minute clip of that interview): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BoncJBrrdQ8
  • I also mentioned that I’m reading “God’s Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detective Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe”, which has in Chapter 4 (“Signs of Design”) 8 recognizable and detectable signs of intelligent design using the acronym D.E.S.I.G.N.:
    • Dubious Probability
    • Echoes of Familiarity
    • Sophistication and Intricacy
    • Informational Dependency
    • Goal Direction
    • Natural Inexplicability

Next week we will be finishing up the book and discussing where we’ll go next.

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