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How Does a Mouse Trap Point to God?

Posted on: January 05, 2016

Mousetrap points to God.001

IRREDUCIBLE COMPLEXITY IS A POWERFUL ARGUMENT FOR THE EXISTENCE OF GOD

The theory of evolution is just that: a theory. Evolution is called theory because it has not been proved. In fact it cannot be proved. Yet the theory has become so widely embraced and so deeply entrenched in educational circles that anything other than absolute conformity to the theory of evolution is considered heretical and branded as unscientific and unprofessional.

It is widely embraced, however, not because the facts are unquestionable, but rather because the facts can be arranged in a way that fits the presuppositions of those looking at the facts. There are large and serious holes, however, not only in the facts but also in the logic of evolution. The more scientific knowledge we gain, the more improbable the theory of evolution appears. On the macro level, the rather unsophisticated level on which Darwin was looking at science and nature, the odds in favor of the theory are improved. But, when we look at the current micro level, a much more sophisticated level than was available to Darwin in his time, the odds against his theory become overwhelming.

Before we took our holiday hiatus from these worldview issues, we looked at the complexity of DNA and concluded that it was unreasonable to think that “chance” could account for it. Now in this blog post, we look at the irreducible complexity of the individual cell, and conclude that the theory of evolution cannot explain the inner workings of an individual cell.

This can get technical, but scientist Michael Behe coined the term “irreducible complexity” to refer to the minimum level of complexity that must be present before an integrated system can function at all. His favorite illustration is a mouse trap. You cannot start with the wooden base and catch a few mice… Then add the spring and catch a few more mice… Then add a hammer and catch even more mice. Instead, all the parts have to be assembled at once, or you don’t catch any mice at all. You cannot get gradual improvement in mouse catching by adding the pieces one at a time. Instead the entire system has to be in place, from the beginning, in order to work at all.

Yet, in evolution, natural selection is said to work on tiny, random improvements in function. But irreducibly complex systems don’t have any function until all the parts are in place—which means those parts, themselves, cannot be products of natural selection. They must have been designed into place before any of it started functioning. And intelligence is the only reasonable explanation for the design.

Nancy Pearcy, in her book Finding Truth writes:

Today biologists cannot even describe the cell without resorting to the language of machines and engineering. Michael Behe piles example upon example, but consider just one. Each cell has an automated “rapid transit system” in which certain molecules function as tiny monorail trains running along tracks to whisk cargo around from one part of the cell to another. Other molecules act as loading machines, filling up the train cars and attaching address labels. When the train reaches the right “address” in another part of the cell, it is met by other molecules that act as docking machines, opening them up and removing the supplies.

 To frame a mental image of the cell, picture it as a large and complex model train layout, with tracks crisscrossing everywhere, its switches and signals perfectly timed so that no trains collide and the cargo reaches its destination precisely when needed.

 This is a level of complexity Darwin never dreamed of, and his theory utterly fails to account for it. Why? Because a system of coordinated, interlocking parts like this can only operate after all the pieces are in place—which means they must appear simultaneously, not by any gradual, piece-by-piece process (page 185-186).

Like a mousetrap, the parts of a cell cannot have evolved from simple to complex. It takes all parts of the cell to work at all.

So, the profound complexity of DNA along with the irreducible complexity of the individual cell make it inconceivable that they could be accounted for by chance. It is only a divine prejudice that accounts for the unwillingness of scientists to concede the reality of intelligent design.

As disciples of Christ, as we seek to guide our own spiritual development as well as to help guide the spiritual development of others, mastering this information will build our confidence in a Christian worldview and creates a powerful tool that can be used to build up the faith of believers as well as to reach out to unbelievers. Many unbelievers simply have never heard a rational explanation for alternatives to evolution. When evolution is no longer an impediment to believing in God, there are those who will accept Him as a result.

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