Tuesday, July 25, 2017

No Creation Errors

A look at the creation of Planet Earth, our Solar System, the Milky Way galaxy, and our entire cosmos reveals a creation with no divine errors. If we believe in an omniscient and omnipotent Creator, we posit that his works of creation are mistake-free. From a human perspective, however, we may errantly identify many “errors.” As we talk with friends concerning the reality of God and his characteristics, a common thread sometimes runs through our discussions: Why didn’t God…..? Why doesn’t God reveal himself by…..? According to our friends’ human reckoning, they believe an answer to these questions according to their personal viewpoint might affirm the reality of God’s existence or reveal his attributes. We believe human answers to these questions would do little to affirm the Creator’s existence or reveal his characteristics.

We are tempted to ask our friends, “What would be the characteristics of a perfect world?” Descriptions of our “perfect world” may be interminably long. Some folks may realize the futility of their project. Countless volumes have been produced describing the physical world as it currently exists. Most secular books describe our world with detailed accounts of an ordered and well-designed physical system. Most people would be unable to deny the existence of a lengthy collection of orderly characteristics and designs. Fanciful proposals of a human designed “perfect world,” however, would descend into triviality and ignorance. 

Would we change any of the dozens of physical constants by which our world currently operates in a predictable and orderly manner? Does anyone wish to change the predictable force of gravity on Planet Earth? Would we consider modifying the virtually unlimited manifestations of electromagnetic energy by which light and heat are transferred and by which modern communications are enabled? Personal studies may reveal precise empirical facts about charges, masses, and sizes of atomic particles which compose the matter of our physical existence. These are just several of dozens of characteristics of matter known as physical constants. They are the immutable design characteristics of our cosmos. Not even one of these constants could vary and still permit life to exist anywhere in the universe. Moreover, altering any of the constants would plunge the cosmic system into chaos.

In more specific areas of life science, secular scientist Fred Hoyle in his 1984 volume Intelligent Universe compared “the chance of obtaining even a single functioning protein by chance combination of amino acids to a star system full of blind men solving Rubik’s Cube simultaneously.” Intuitively, when we examine the millions of different Earth species, we perceive that there were no mistakes by the Creator in their production, physical design, and behavioral manifestations.  

Modern skeptics of intelligent design select the human “inverted retina,” as an example of errant design. They claim the cells in the vertebrate retina are oriented functionally sub-optimally because retinal photoreceptors are oriented away from incoming light. We must pass over many pages of detailed scientific evidence and claim that “if the human retina were (not inverted), we have no evidence that vision would be better. Most likely, it would be worse.” (ASA fellow Jerry Bergman, in “Perspectives on Science and the Christian Faith,” March 2000.) 

Some non-theistic scientists dwell on other fanciful ideals for their proposals of a “perfect world” of living creatures—different from our current one. The Creator’s “mistakes” are supposedly demonstrated by the human esophagus, the panda’s thumb, the human appendix, and pseudogenes, all pronounced to be wasteful or unnecessary. These famous objections have been debunked many times.

As we examine our universe, the life forms within it, and the unique visual beauty and physical organization of several million species of life forms, we caution our readers that any effort to identify errant designs or inefficient processes in our physical planetary system, including its living systems is doomed to fail. God has made no errors in his personal creative actions, but he may have a purpose in allowing error in the behavior of his redeemed people. Such error by humanity is the result of God’s gift of free will.

We conclude our discussion of the absence of errors in God’s creation with Psalm 145:3 (ESV): “Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable.”