Origin of Life Reveals a Transcendent Creator

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The probability of an RNA spontaneously forming from simple organic compounds in the primordial soup is essentially zero.

There’s so much evidence for fine-tuning in the origin of the universe, pointing to a transcendent Creator, that scientists had to come up with the far-fetched multiverse theory to try to get around a Creator (even though a multiverse would need a Creator, too).

Now, they’re doing a similar thing vis-a-vis the origin of life. There’s so much evidence that life could not have originated through random chance, implying that it had to have been designed by a transcendent Creator, that (some) scientists are resorting to quantum physics as a possible explanation.

In their book Life on the Edge, Johnjoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili (the latter a science popularizer frequently seen on science television shows) discuss the impossibility of life ever originating on its own in the “primordial soup”. When in 1952 Stanley Miller and Harold Urey tried to replicate that primordial soup in the famous Miller-Urey experiment, all they came up with were some amino acids. Such acids are what proteins are made of.

Proteins are the components of cells. (They’re not just nutrients found in meat. They’re so much more than that.) They are molecular structures that take multitudes of shapes, which carry out multitudes of functions within the cell. They are akin to the components of your car engine – i.e. mostly made of metal, but in a variety of shapes and forms (e.g. piston, fan, spark plug, etc.)

Proteins are needed for life to form. Also needed are nucleotides – which form DNA and RNA, the blueprints which instruct amino acids to form the millions of varieties of proteins. The authors cite the Scottish chemist Graham Cairns-Smith, who estimated that just to form an RNA from simple organic compounds in the primordial soup, there are some 140 steps involved. For each step there are about six reactions that have to be avoided. “So the odds of any starting molecule eventually being converted into RNA is equivalent to throwing a six 140 times in a row.” The chances of this happening are roughly one in six to the power of 140.

But six to the power of 140 is far more than there are particles in the universe! McFadden and Al-Khalili write that the earth simply did not have enough molecules or enough time to enable anything like that to happen. And that’s just the first step – random chance also needs to make ribozymes (a certain type of RNA) capable of self-replication. Random chance additionally needs to make proteins. “Clearly, we cannot rely on pure chance alone,” declare the authors.

That points to obvious evidence of a transcendent Creator.

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But McFadden and Al-Khalili are scientists, and the job of scientists is to find natural explanations to things, not supernatural explanations to things – even when the evidence screams supernatural.

So McFadden and Al-Khalili resort to quantum physics to try to come up with an explanation – and quantum physics is very supernatural-like. They suggest that quantum tunnelling (akin to going through solid walls) and quantum superposition (where a proto-enzyme can exist in all of its possible configurations simultaneously) played a role.

Scientists often use the terms “weird” and “strange” to describe quantum physics, because things happen therein that from a classical physics perspective are like little miracles. In quantum physics, subatomic particles can be move through solid walls. They can be invisible. They can communicate instantaneously with a twin particle a billion light years away. And a single particle can be in many different, distinct places and configurations simultaneously.

Scientists have no idea how these phenomena happen. They just know that they happen.

They are stumped enough trying to explain how the natural physical world arose on its own. They certainly have no idea whatsoever how the quantum physical world arose, or how it works.

It’s yet more evidence of a transcendent Creator.

Seeing Divinity in Biology

Divinity in biology. Cross - DNA. Cell structure, collogen.

Studying biology is a religious experience. That’s especially the case today, with the advent of 3D animated videos (available on YouTube) depicting what goes on inside and outside our cells. Such videos display the wonderous engineering within our bodies – engineering vastly more sophisticated than any human-engineered phenomena (such as a car engine). The fingerprints of God are everywhere.

Too bad those videos weren’t available when this reporter was in high school; I bet I would have taken biology a lot more seriously. I only was able to try to visualize what was going on by reading the printed word and looking at some pictures. My visualization efforts fell woefully short.

To say everything arose by chance is insulting to one’s intelligence. If it did arise by chance, where are all the 3D animated videos depicting how that chance process played out?

As associate professor of medicine and chief of scientific visualization at Yale University, Alexander Tsiaras and colleagues used new scanning technologies to see things about the human body “that just made one marvel,” he said in a TED talk. They were looking at collagen, which comprises much of the human body, a kind of rope-like structure that twirls and swirls. Collagen changes its structure in the cornea of the eye, becoming a grid formation in order to be transparent, as opposed to opaque. “So perfectly organized a structure, it was hard not to attribute divinity to it,” said he.

He also scanned the development of the fetus from conception to birth. The human heart at 25 days, he said

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Alexander Tsiaras (screen grab via YouTube)

, is like a magnificent origami. “I look at this with marvel of how do these instruction sets not make these mistakes as they build what is us? It’s a mystery, it’s magic, it’s divinity.”

Regarding capillaries, “The complexity of building that within a single system is, again, beyond any comprehension or any existing mathematics today.”

He adds, “How does the woman’s body understand to have genetic structure that not only builds her own, but then has the understanding that allows her to become a walking immunological, cardiovascular system that basically is a mobile system that can actually nurture, treat this child with a kind of marvel that is beyond, again, our comprehension – the magic that is existence, that is us?”

That’s a strong case for the existence of God.

It’s also a strong case against abortion. How could anyone so unceremoniously snuff out such a marvel of Divine engineering?

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