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William Lane Craig takes on Adam and Eve

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About Dr. Craig
William Lane Craig

It’s risky. The church splitter (fundamentalism) vs. the church closer (theistic evolution). William Lane Craig writes:

Two challenges to this doctrine arise from modern science, one fairly old and the other very recent.

I am currently exploring the genetic evidence that is said to rule out an original pair of modern humans. In talking with genetic scientists, I’ve found that there is enormous confusion about this question today. Popularizers have misrepresented the arguments, thereby inviting misguided responses. The issues are very technical and difficult to understand. I’m just beginning to get my feet wet and don’t want to misrepresent the science. I want to know how firm the evidence is and what it would cost intellectually to maintain the traditional view. For example, one scientist estimates that for the entire human race to have originated from an isolated pair 100,000 years ago, the mutation rate would have to be five times what it is observed today. Is that too outlandish to affirm? More.

He should talk with Richard Buggs and Ann Gauger, among other people.

See also: Geneticist defends possible Adam and Eve in Nature: Ecology and Evolution

Adam, Eve, Richard Buggs, and Dennis Venema: Could Adam and Eve have existed?

Are Adam and Eve genetically possible? The latest: Richard Buggs (yes) replies to Dennis Venema (no)

Adam and Eve and Ann Gauger

and

Ann Gauger on stacking the deck against Eve

9 Replies to “William Lane Craig takes on Adam and Eve

  1. 1
    Silver Asiatic says:

    For example, one scientist estimates that for the entire human race to have originated from an isolated pair 100,000 years ago

    Assuming that humans originated from pre-human animals by mutations.

  2. 2
    caleb says:

    A bottleneck of two individuals does not necessarily imply common descent. They can be a unique creation as well. Starting from two whether by common dissent or by special creation will give the same results with population genetics statistics, assuming genetic diversity is present in the first two and they are not assumed to be the same genetically. That is what is surprising, that we can generate Enough genetic diverse city going from two to a population of tens of thousands in just a few hundred thousand years. So far the results indicate 500,000 years or earlier or possible times for the first parents. With further work the time may change to a more recent time.

  3. 3
    caleb says:

    This is actually good news, because it refutes the claim that we had to come from a population of 10,000. This was the claim that Venema made in his book Adam And the Genome. It’s the claim that Richard Buggs challenged, and on the Biologos forum was shown to be false. Even if the date is 500,000 years old, that is still better than no first pair at all.

    Read Gauger‘s stuff. She summarizes it well.

  4. 4
    Allan Keith says:

    Caleb,

    Even if the date is 500,000 years old, that is still better than no first pair at all.

    Better for what? Or who?

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    In post 1, Silver Asiatic states:

    “Assuming that humans originated from pre-human animals by mutations”, (to DNA).

    And that is precisely the unspoken assumption behind the entire neo-Darwinian edifice.

    Yet that assumption is false.

    As Stephen Meyer noted in the following video, ““you can mutate DNA indefinitely. 80 million years, 100 million years, til the cows come home. It doesn’t matter,,,, You are not, by mutating DNA alone, going to generate higher order structures that are necessary to building a body plan.”

    “you can mutate DNA indefinitely. 80 million years, 100 million years, til the cows come home. It doesn’t matter, because in the best case you are just going to find a new protein some place out there in that vast combinatorial sequence space. You are not, by mutating DNA alone, going to generate higher order structures that are necessary to building a body plan. So what we can conclude from that is that the neo-Darwinian mechanism is grossly inadequate to explain the origin of information necessary to build new genes and proteins, and it is also grossly inadequate to explain the origination of novel biological form.”
    – Stephen Meyer – Functional Proteins and Information for Body Plans – video – 5:55 minute mark
    https://youtu.be/hs4y4XLGQ-Y?t=354

    And as Jonathan Wells states in the following article(s), “Studies using saturation mutagenesis in the embryos of fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice also provide evidence against the idea that DNA specifies the basic form of an organism. Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.”

    Jonathan Wells: Far from being all-powerful, DNA does not wholly determine biological form – March 31, 2014
    Excerpt: Studies using saturation mutagenesis in the embryos of fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice also provide evidence against the idea that DNA specifies the basic form of an organism. Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/jonathan-wells-far-from-being-all-powerful-dna-does-not-wholly-determine-biological-form/

    Response to John Wise – October 2010
    Excerpt: But there are solid empirical grounds for arguing that changes in DNA alone cannot produce new organs or body plans. A technique called “saturation mutagenesis”1,2 has been used to produce every possible developmental mutation in fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster),3,4,5 roundworms (Caenorhabditis elegans),6,7 and zebrafish (Danio rerio),8,9,10 and the same technique is now being applied to mice (Mus musculus).11,12. None of the evidence from these and numerous other studies of developmental mutations supports the neo-Darwinian dogma that DNA mutations can lead to new organs or body plans–,,,
    (As Jonathan Wells states),,, We can modify the DNA of a fruit fly embryo in any way we want, and there are only three possible outcomes:
    A normal fruit fly;
    A defective fruit fly; or
    A dead fruit fly.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....38811.html

    Moreover, to further drive the point home that the sequences in DNA cannot explain how any particular kind of organism achieves its basic form, in the following article Dr. Jonathan Wells states, “I now know as an embryologist,,,Tissues and cells, as they differentiate, modify their DNA to suit their needs. It’s the organism controlling the DNA, not the DNA controlling the organism.”

    Ask an Embryologist: Genomic Mosaicism – Jonathan Wells – February 23, 2015
    Excerpt: humans have a “few thousand” different cell types. Here is my simple question: Does the DNA sequence in one cell type differ from the sequence in another cell type in the same person?,,,
    The simple answer is: We now know that there is considerable variation in DNA sequences among tissues, and even among cells in the same tissue. It’s called genomic mosaicism.
    In the early days of developmental genetics, some people thought that parts of the embryo became different from each other because they acquired different pieces of the DNA from the fertilized egg. That theory was abandoned,,,
    ,,,(then) “genomic equivalence” — the idea that all the cells of an organism (with a few exceptions, such as cells of the immune system) contain the same DNA — became the accepted view.
    I taught genomic equivalence for many years. A few years ago, however, everything changed. With the development of more sophisticated techniques and the sampling of more tissues and cells, it became clear that genetic mosaicism is common.
    I now know as an embryologist,,,Tissues and cells, as they differentiate, modify their DNA to suit their needs. It’s the organism controlling the DNA, not the DNA controlling the organism.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....93851.html

    Contrary to expectations, genes are constantly rearranged by cells – July 7, 2017
    Excerpt: Contrary to expectations, this latest study reveals that each gene doesn’t have an ideal location in the cell nucleus. Instead, genes are always on the move. Published in the journal Nature, researchers examined the organisation of genes in stem cells from mice. They revealed that these cells continually remix their genes, changing their positions as they progress through different stages.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/researchers-contrary-to-expectations-genes-are-constantly-rearranged-by-cells/

    In fact, in direct contradiction to the neo-Darwinian model, it is now known that the vast majority of mutations to DNA are not truly random mutations but are ‘directed mutations’.

    James Shapiro weighs in here and states, ‘Research dating back to the 1930s has shown that genetic change is the result of cell-mediated processes, not simply accidents or damage to the DNA. This cell-active view of genome change applies to all scales of DNA sequence variation, from point mutations to large-scale genome rearrangements and whole genome duplications (WGDs).’

    How life changes itself: the Read-Write (RW) genome. – 2013
    Excerpt: Research dating back to the 1930s has shown that genetic change is the result of cell-mediated processes, not simply accidents or damage to the DNA. This cell-active view of genome change applies to all scales of DNA sequence variation, from point mutations to large-scale genome rearrangements and whole genome duplications (WGDs). This conceptual change to active cell inscriptions controlling RW genome functions has profound implications for all areas of the life sciences.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23876611

    WHAT SCIENTIFIC IDEA IS READY FOR RETIREMENT? Fully Random Mutations – Kevin Kelly – 2014
    Excerpt: What is commonly called “random mutation” does not in fact occur in a mathematically random pattern. The process of genetic mutation is extremely complex, with multiple pathways, involving more than one system. Current research suggests most spontaneous mutations occur as errors in the repair process for damaged DNA. Neither the damage nor the errors in repair have been shown to be random in where they occur, how they occur, or when they occur. Rather, the idea that mutations are random is simply a widely held assumption by non-specialists and even many teachers of biology. There is no direct evidence for it.
    On the contrary, there’s much evidence that genetic mutation vary in patterns. For instance it is pretty much accepted that mutation rates increase or decrease as stress on the cells increases or decreases. These variable rates of mutation include mutations induced by stress from an organism’s predators and competition, and as well as increased mutations brought on by environmental and epigenetic factors. Mutations have also been shown to have a higher chance of occurring near a place in DNA where mutations have already occurred, creating mutation hotspot clusters—a non-random pattern.
    http://edge.org/response-detail/25264

    Even more crushing to Darwinian presuppositions, ‘randomness’ itself is far less prevalent within life than was originally presupposed by Darwinists. In fact, advances in quantum biology have now proven that Darwinists, with their reductive materialistic framework, are not even on the correct theoretical framework in order to properly understand molecular biology in the first place.

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – video
    https://youtu.be/LHdD2Am1g5Y

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    And here is a particularly crystal clear example of the ‘organism controlling the DNA, and not the DNA controlling the organism’, as is presupposed in Darwinian thinking. Specifically, a bacterium, ‘after shattering of its 3.2 Mb genome into 20–30 kb pieces,,, miraculously reassembles its genome such that only 3 hr later fully reconstituted nonrearranged chromosomes are present, and the cells carry on, alive as normal.,,,’

    Extreme Genome Repair – 2009
    Excerpt: If its naming had followed, rather than preceded, molecular analyses of its DNA, the extremophile bacterium Deinococcus radiodurans might have been called Lazarus. After shattering of its 3.2 Mb genome into 20–30 kb pieces by desiccation or a high dose of ionizing radiation, D. radiodurans miraculously reassembles its genome such that only 3 hr later fully reconstituted nonrearranged chromosomes are present, and the cells carry on, alive as normal.,,,
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pm.....MC3319128/

    In the lab, scientists coax E. coli to resist radiation damage – March 17, 2014
    Excerpt: ,,, John R. Battista, a professor of biological sciences at Louisiana State University, showed that E. coli could evolve to resist ionizing radiation by exposing cultures of the bacterium to the highly radioactive isotope cobalt-60. “We blasted the cultures until 99 percent of the bacteria were dead. Then we’d grow up the survivors and blast them again. We did that twenty times,” explains Cox.
    The result were E. coli capable of enduring as much as four orders of magnitude more ionizing radiation, making them similar to Deinococcus radiodurans, a desert-dwelling bacterium found in the 1950s to be remarkably resistant to radiation. That bacterium is capable of surviving more than one thousand times the radiation dose that would kill a human.
    http://www.news.wisc.edu/22641

    Darwinists simply have no evidence supporting their claim that mutations to DNA, (random or directed mutations,) can produce radical transformations to the basic body plan of any particular type of organism.

    Darwinism vs Biological Form – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JyNzNPgjM4w

    Moreover, this failure of (neo) Darwinian evolution to be able to explain the basic form of any particular organism occurs at a very low level. Much lower than DNA itself.
    In the following article entitled ‘Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable’, which studied the derivation of macroscopic properties from a complete microscopic description, the researchers remark that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,, The researchers further commented that their findings challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”

    Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics – December 9, 2015
    Excerpt: A mathematical problem underlying fundamental questions in particle and quantum physics is provably unsolvable,,,
    It is the first major problem in physics for which such a fundamental limitation could be proven. The findings are important because they show that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,,
    “We knew about the possibility of problems that are undecidable in principle since the works of Turing and Gödel in the 1930s,” added Co-author Professor Michael Wolf from Technical University of Munich. “So far, however, this only concerned the very abstract corners of theoretical computer science and mathematical logic. No one had seriously contemplated this as a possibility right in the heart of theoretical physics before. But our results change this picture. From a more philosophical perspective, they also challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”
    http://phys.org/news/2015-12-q.....godel.html

    To state what should be glaringly obvious, since neo-Darwinian, i.e. reductive materialistic, explanations are grossly inadequate for explaining how any particular organism might achieve its basic form, then neo-Darwinian speculations for how one type of organism might transform into another type of organism, by mutations to DNA, are based on pure fantasy and have no discernible experimental basis in reality.

    Here are a few supplemental notes that help drive the point home that Darwinian arguments for human evolution are not nearly as strong as is currently popularly believed

    (March 2018)
    1. The DNA similarity (between chimps and humans) is not nearly as close to 99% as Darwinists have falsely portrayed it to be.
    2. Even if DNA were as similar as Darwinists have falsely portrayed it to be, the basic ‘form’ that any organism may take is not reducible to DNA, (nor is the basic ‘form’ reducible to any other material particulars in molecular biology, (proteins, RNAs, etc.. etc.. ,,), that Darwinists may wish to invoke. That is to say, ‘you can mutate DNA til the cows come home’ and you will still not achieve a fundamental change in the basic form of an organism. And since the basic ‘form’ of an organism is forever beyond the explanatory power of Darwinian mechanisms, then any belief that Darwinism explains the ‘transformation of forms’ for all of life on earth is purely a pipe dream that has no experimental basis in reality.
    3. To further drive this point home, Dolphins and Kangaroos, although being very different morphologically from humans, are found to have very similar DNA sequences to humans.
    4. Where differences are greatest between chimps and humans are in alternative splicing patterns. In fact ., due to alternative slicing, “Alternatively spliced isoforms,,, appear to behave as if encoded by distinct genes rather than as minor variants of each other.,,,” and “As many as 100,000 distinct isoform transcripts could be produced from the 20,000 human protein-coding genes (Pan et al., 2008), collectively leading to perhaps over a million distinct polypeptides obtained by post-translational modification of products of all possible transcript isoforms,,”
    5. Although the behavioral differences between man and apes are far greater than many Darwinists are willing to concede, the one difference that most dramatically separates man from apes, i.e. our ability to speak, is the one unique attribute that leading Darwinists themselves admit that they have no clue how it could have possibly evolved, and is also the one attribute that most distinctly indicates that we are indeed ‘made in the image of God’.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/comparing-human-and-chimp-dna-using-a-software-analogy/#comment-654633

    Here is a video playlist of Dr. Giem’s recent series reviewing John Sanford’s new book “Contested Bones”. The book “Contested Bones” (by Christopher Rupe and geneticist John Sanford) is the result of four years of intense research into the primary scientific literature concerning those bones that are thought to represent transitional forms between ape and man. This book’s title reflects the surprising reality that all the famous “hominin” bones continue to be fiercely contested today—even within the field of paleoanthropology (The last 3 videos in the series deal with the misleading genetic evidence).

    “Contested Bones” review by Paul Giem – video playlist
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6ZOKj-YaHA&list=PLHDSWJBW3DNU_twNBjopIqyFOwo_bTkXm

  7. 7
    Silver Asiatic says:

    BA77

    As Stephen Meyer noted in the following video, ““you can mutate DNA indefinitely. 80 million years, 100 million years, til the cows come home. It doesn’t matter,,,, You are not, by mutating DNA alone, going to generate higher order structures that are necessary to building a body plan.”

    True, and that’s just talking about a body plan.
    The supposed move from animal to human would require the development of human consciousness, rationality, purpose — all from mutations in DNA.
    And that is impossible.

  8. 8
    bornagain77 says:

    Yes Silver Asiatic, the reductive materialism that undergirds Darwinian thought, since it denies the reality of the immaterial realm, finds itself in quite an embarrassing situation in regards to requiring validation from the mathematics of population genetics.

    Although it is almost universally acknowledged that mathematics exists in some transcendent “Platonic” realm,

    Platonic World vs Physical World
    https://i2.wp.com/abyss.uoregon.edu/~js/images/platonic_physical.gif

    Mathematical Platonism
    Excerpt: Mathematical platonism enjoys widespread support and is frequently considered the default metaphysical position with respect to mathematics. This is unsurprising given its extremely natural interpretation of mathematical practice.
    http://www.iep.utm.edu/mathplat/

    Mathematical Platonism
    Mathematical platonism is the view on which mathematical objects exist and are abstract (aspatial, atemporal and acausal) and independent of human minds and linguistic practices. According to mathematical platonism, mathematical theories are true in virtue of those objects possessing (or not) certain properties. One important challenge to (of) platonism (to reductive materialism) is explaining how biological organisms such as human beings could have knowledge of such objects. Another is to explain why mathematical theories about such objects should turn out to be applicable in sciences concerned with the physical world.
    https://philpapers.org/browse/mathematical-platonism

    ,,, and although every rigorous theory of science requires verification from mathematics, and experimentation, in order to be considered scientific in the first place,

    “No human investigation can be called real science if it cannot be demonstrated mathematically.”
    – Leonardo da Vinci

    ,,, the reductive materialism that Darwinian evolution is based upon denies the existence of anything beyond the material realm.

    What is the difference between naturalism and materialism?
    Excerpt: Naturalism is the view that the world can be explained entirely by physical, natural phenomena/laws. Naturalists either assert that there is no supernatural (or metaphysical) existence, or that if there is, it has no impact on our physical world.,,,
    Materialism is the related view that all existence is matter, that only matter is real, and so that the world is just physical. It simply describes a view on the nature of the universe, while the different branches of Naturalism focus on applications of effectively the same view.
    Thus, the difference between the two is the purpose of the definition – materialism makes an argument about the ontology of the universe, while naturalism takes a premise (effectively that of materialism) to make an argument on how science/philosophy should function.
    https://philosophy.stackexchange.com/questions/2406/what-is-the-difference-between-naturalism-and-materialism

    There simply is no place for the immaterial realm of mathematics to find grounding for its reality in the reductive materialism that undergirds Darwinian thought.

    What Does It Mean to Say That Science & Religion Conflict? – M. Anthony Mills – April 16, 2018
    Excerpt: In fact, more problematic for the materialist than the non-existence of persons is the existence of mathematics. Why? Although a committed materialist might be perfectly willing to accept that you do not really exist, he will have a harder time accepting that numbers do not exist. The trouble is that numbers — along with other mathematical entities such as classes, sets, and functions — are indispensable for modern science. And yet — here’s the rub — these “abstract objects” are not material. Thus, one cannot take science as the only sure guide to reality and at the same time discount disbelief in all immaterial realities.
    https://www.realclearreligion.org/articles/2018/04/16/what_does_it_mean_to_say_that_science_and_religion_conflict.html

    As David Berlinski states, “There is no argument against religion that is not also an argument against mathematics. Mathematicians are capable of grasping a world of objects that lies beyond space and time….”

    An Interview with David Berlinski – Jonathan Witt
    Berlinski: There is no argument against religion that is not also an argument against mathematics. Mathematicians are capable of grasping a world of objects that lies beyond space and time….
    Interviewer:… Come again(?) …
    Berlinski: No need to come again: I got to where I was going the first time. The number four, after all, did not come into existence at a particular time, and it is not going to go out of existence at another time. It is neither here nor there. Nonetheless we are in some sense able to grasp the number by a faculty of our minds. Mathematical intuition is utterly mysterious. So for that matter is the fact that mathematical objects such as a Lie Group or a differentiable manifold have the power to interact with elementary particles or accelerating forces. But these are precisely the claims that theologians have always made as well – that human beings are capable by an exercise of their devotional abilities to come to some understanding of the deity; and the deity, although beyond space and time, is capable of interacting with material objects.
    http://tofspot.blogspot.com/20.....-here.html

    Therefore, besides Darwinian evolution already being shown to be mathematically impossible (by Sanford, Dembski, Marks, Axe, Behe, Durston etc.. etc..), Darwinian evolution is further falsified by mathematics as being a scientific theory since Darwinism denies the very reality of one the thing it most needs, i.e. mathematics, in order to be considered scientific in the first place.

    Darwinian Evolution vs Mathematics – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3gyx70BHvA

    And as you alluded to Silver Asiatic, the reductive materialism that undergirds Darwinian thought also denies the reality of consciousness, rationality, purpose, etc..

    Basically, because of reductive materialism (and/or methodological naturalism), the atheistic materialist is forced to claim that he is merely a ‘neuronal illusion’ (Coyne, Dennett, etc..), who has the illusion of free will (Harris), who has unreliable beliefs about reality (Plantinga), who has illusory perceptions of reality (Hoffman), who, since he has no real time empirical evidence substantiating his grandiose claims, must make up illusory “just so stories” with the illusory, and impotent, ‘designer substitute’ of natural selection (Behe, Gould, Sternberg), so as to ‘explain away’ the appearance (i.e. illusion) of design (Crick, Dawkins), and who must make up illusory meanings and purposes for his life since the reality of the nihilism inherent in his atheistic worldview is too much for him to bear (Weikart), and who must also hold morality to be subjective and illusory since he has rejected God (Craig).
    Bottom line, nothing is real in the atheist’s worldview, least of all, morality, meaning and purposes for life.
    – References for all preceding claims on page 37
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pAYmZpUWFEi3hu45FbQZEvGKsZ9GULzh8KM0CpqdePk/edit

    Of particular interest in the reductive materialist’s denial of the immaterial realm, it is now found that immaterial information is a ‘physically real entity’ that has, of all things, a ‘thermodynamic content’:

    Demonic device converts information to energy – 2010
    Excerpt: “This is a beautiful experimental demonstration that information has a thermodynamic content,” says Christopher Jarzynski, a statistical chemist at the University of Maryland in College Park. In 1997, Jarzynski formulated an equation to define the amount of energy that could theoretically be converted from a unit of information2; the work by Sano and his team has now confirmed this equation. “This tells us something new about how the laws of thermodynamics work on the microscopic scale,” says Jarzynski.
    http://www.scientificamerican......rts-inform

    Information engine operates with nearly perfect efficiency – Lisa Zyga – January 19, 2018
    Excerpt: Physicists have experimentally demonstrated an information engine—a device that converts information into work—with an efficiency that exceeds the conventional second law of thermodynamics. Instead, the engine’s efficiency is bounded by a recently proposed generalized second law of thermodynamics, and it is the first information engine to approach this new bound.,,,
    By avoiding practically any information loss, the information-to-energy conversion of this process reaches approximately 98.5% of the bound set by the generalized second law. The results lend support for this bound, and illustrate the possibility of extracting the maximum amount of work possible from information.
    – per physorg

  9. 9
    Silver Asiatic says:

    BA77

    Yes, regarding this thread I believe WL Craig is a theistic evolutionist. That’s what will get him in trouble when he tries to reconcile religious teachings. He’ll start with Darwinian assumptions.

    “There is no argument against religion that is not also an argument against mathematics. Mathematicians are capable of grasping a world of objects that lies beyond space and time….”

    Great quote by Berlinski. Mathematics is a structured language and set of rules by which we can understand dimensions that transcend the physical.
    Religion is the same thing but with greater scope and power. Like mathematics, we adhere to religious language and rules and from that, we find truths.
    Before religion we do the same with philosophy where we have rules for right reason.

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