By Editorial Staff
Published April 22, 2008
The fundamental laws of probability answer, “Yes, you do!”
by Dave Bovenmyer
“ACTUALLY NO ONE CAN PROVE THAT GOD EXISTS,” MY UNCLE BOLDLY STATED TO THE ENTIRE SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASS. “IN FACT, WE REALLY CAN’T PROVE ANYTHING, NOT EVEN THAT WE EXIST.”
“That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard,” our pastor responded.
Suddenly my uncle jumped out of his seat with a yell. Our pastor had kicked him in the shin under the table.
My uncle decided to drop the argument. He had had enough proof for one day.
Although some people may require more evidence than others to reach a conclusion, the fact that we exist is so obvious that most of us never question it. Yet just as there is an abundance of evidence to prove our existence, so there is an abundance of evidence to convince any open-minded person that God exists.
Of the many evidences for the existence of God, one of the most convincing is the existence of life as we know it. The incredible complexity that we find in living things demands the existence of a master designer.
Even the smallest unit of life, the cell, is amazingly complex: According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, “The information content of a simply cell has been estimated at around one trillion bits or pieces of information.” That, according to Cosmos television series host Carl Sagan, is equivalent to the total number of letters in all of the books in the world’s largest library.
How do scientists who believe that God had no part in the origin of the universe postulate that such complexity could arise by chance? They resort to their hero — time. “Time is the hero on the plot,” Nobel prize winner George Wald has said. “Given enough time anything could happen — the impossible becomes probable; the improbable becomes certain.”
Prominent evolutionist Julian Huxley has stated that — given enough time — monkeys typing on typewriters could eventually type out the complete works of Shakespeare.
Such statements may seem plausible at first glance, but upon closer examination they become ludicrous. In his book Darwin’s Enigma, author and international lecturer Luther Sunderland calculated the statistical probability that thousands of monkeys – enough to cover every square foot of the Earth’s surface – typing on typewriters could produce a specific five-word sentence. Even if each one typed at the fantastic rate of 10 characters a second for 30 billion years, “there would not be the slightest reasonable chance that a single one would type out a single specific five-word sentence of 31 characters,” Sunderland concluded. In fact, the actual probability that any one monkey would type that sentence in 30 billion years is less than once chance in a trillion.
If a single five-word sentence could not be formed by chance in 30 billion years, it is utterly inconceivable that a cell – containing more data than all of the letters in all of the volumes of the world’s largest library – could have formed by random processes.
In 1981, famous British mathematician and astronomer Sir Fred Hoyle, in his book Evolution from Space, reversed his position on the origin of life. Although he had been an atheist all of his life, he came to the conclusion that the high degree of order in the universe demanded pre-existing intelligence “even to the limit of God.”
According to his calculations, the probability of life as we know it originating by random processes is one chance in 1040000 – that is 10 multiplied by itself 40,000 times.
Since the number 1040000 is so large that it is difficult to illustrate, let us try to visualize a much smaller number, 10157, using an illustration from astronomer and mathematician Peter Stoner’s book Science Speaks.
For his illustration, Stoner chose one of the smallest particles that we know of, the electron. The electron is so small that you can lay 2.5 × 1015 of them side by side to make a line one inch long. If we were to count the electrons in this one-inch line, counting 250 per minute, it would take 19 million years to finish.
Now let’s take 10157 electrons and put them in a pile. Since electrons are so incredibly small, it would seem that our pile of electrons would easily fit within a few square miles. However, the number 10157 is so large that such a pile would actually be inconceivably big.
To help us comprehend the volume of a pile of 10157 electrons, let’s first imagine a solid ball of electrons extending in all directions from the earth 1.5 million light-years, the distance from our galaxy to the next nearest one. (A light year is almost 6 trillion miles.) Would such a ball use up our 10157 electrons? No, it would be extremely tiny in comparison. Our pile of 10157 electrons would be 2 × 1024 times the size of this ball.
Imagine that we took this utterly humongous pile of 10157 electrons, somehow marked one electron, stirred up the whole mess, blindfolded a man, and had him pick one electron at random. His chances of picking the marked one would be one in 10157. And yet, according to Sir Fred Hoyle, the chance of life originating by random processes is not one in 10157, but an almost infinitely less probable chance of one in 1040000.
The figures speak for themselves. There is absolutely no reasonable chance of life originating through random processes.
If someone claimed that a fountain pen had originated over thousands of years through different pressures and forces of nature, we would consider his statement ridiculous. We all know that even something as simple as a fountain pen had to have a designer. How much more so with the incredible complexity of life.
If the evidence for a master designer is so obvious, why do many people still refuse to believe in God? Chapter one of the book of Romans gives the answer, “Although they knew about God,” it says, “they refused to honor Him as God or to give thanks.”
Men do not reject God because of a lack of evidence. We reject Him because, not wanting anyone to tell us how we should live, we refuse to submit to God. Or because deep inside, we know that we have violated the commands of a holy God and cannot bear to face the possibility of His judgment.
But God has provided forgiveness through His Son, Jesus Christ. When Jesus suffered on the cross, He paid the severe penalty for our violation of God’s commands. If we put our trust in Him and accept this payment for our sins, we will not only know intellectually that God exists, but will experience Him personally as we see Him working daily in our lives.
Reprinted from Potential Magazine
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Foundations in Biblical Eschatology
By Jay Rogers, Larry Waugh, Rodney Stortz, Joseph Meiring. High quality paperback, 167 pages.
All Christians believe that their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will one day return. Although we cannot know the exact time of His return, what exactly did Jesus mean when he spoke of the signs of His coming (Mat. 24)? How are we to interpret the prophecies in Isaiah regarding the time when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:19)? Should we expect a time of great tribulation and apostasy or revival and reformation before the Lord returns? Is the devil bound now, and are the saints reigning with Christ? Did you know that there are four hermeneutical approaches to the book of Daniel and Revelation?
These and many more questions are dealt with by four authors as they present the four views on the millennium. Each view is then critiqued by the other three authors.
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“Give me liberty or give me death!”
Patrick Henry’s famous declaration not only helped launch the War for Independence, it also perfectly summarized the mindset that gave birth to, and sustained, the unprecedented experiment in Christian liberty that was America.
The freedom our Founders envisioned was not freedom from suffering, want, or hard work. Nor was it freedom to indulge every appetite or whim without restraint—that would merely be servitude to a different master. No, the Founders’ passion was to live free before God, unfettered by the chains of autocracy, shackles that slowly but inexorably bind men when the governments they fashion fail to recognize and uphold freedom’s singular, foundational truth: that all men are created in the image of God, and are thereby co-equally endowed with the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
This presentation is a similar call, not to one but many. By reintroducing the principles of freedom that gave birth to America, it is our prayer that Jesus, the true and only ruler over the nations, will once again be our acknowledged Sovereign, that we may again know and exult in the great truth that “where the Spirit of the LORD is, there is liberty” (2 Cor. 3:17).
Welcome to the Second American Revolution!
This DVD features “Liberty: The Model of Christian Liberty” along with “Dawn’s Early Light: A Brief History of America’s Christian Foundations.” Bonus features include a humorous but instructive collection of campaign ads and Eric Holmberg’s controversial YouTube challenge concerning Mitt Romney’s campaign for president.
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A Reasonable Response to Christian Postmodernism
Includes a response to the book Christian Jihad by Colonel V. Doner
The title of this book is a misnomer. In reality, I am not trying to get anyone to shut up, but rather to provoke a discussion. This book is a warning about the philosophy of “Christian postmodernism” and the threat that it poses not only to Christian orthodoxy, but to the peace and prosperity our culture as well. The purpose is to equip the reader with some basic principles that can be used to refute their arguments.
Part 1 is a response to some of the recent writings by Frank Schaeffer, the son of the late Francis Schaeffer. This was originally written as a defense against Frank’s attacks on pro-life street activism – a movement that his father helped bring into being through his books, A Christian Manifesto, How Should We Then Live? and Whatever Happened to the Human Race? These works have impacted literally hundreds of thousands of Christian activists.
Part 2 is a response to Colonel Doner and his book, Christian Jihad: Neo-Fundamentalists and the Polarization of America. Doner was one of the key architects of the Christian Right that emerged in the 1980s, who now represents the disillusionment and defection many Christian activists experienced in the 1990s and 2000s. There is still great hope for America to be reformed according to biblical principles. As a new generation is emerging, it is important to recognize the mistakes that Christian activists have made in the past even while holding to a vision for the future.
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Exposing The Occult Roots of Abortion
This presentation looks at the spiritual roots of abortion and exposes the myths surrounding child killing. Little known historical facts about abortion and how they relate to modern feminism are presented logically and accurately. Has been effective in converting many to a pro-life position.
Massacre of Innocence goes where no pro-life presentation has gone before in “tearing the lid off abortion” to reveal the spiritual realities we must battle if we will bring an end to this crime. The presentation is absorbing, fast-paced, informative and incredibly devastating to any attempt to justify abortion.
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Running time: 85 minutes
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“Here I stand … I can do no other!”
With these immortal words, an unknown German monk sparked a spiritual revolution that changed the world.
The dramatic classic film of Martin Luther’s life was released in theaters worldwide in the 1950s and was nominated for two Oscars. A magnificent depiction of Luther and the forces at work in the surrounding society that resulted in his historic reform efforts, this film traces Luther’s life from a guilt-burdened monk to his eventual break with the Roman Catholic Church.
Running time: 105 minutes
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Watch a clip from Martin Luther.
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