“I don’t believe in evolution because there are so few transitional forms.”

I had a conversation with a guy who explains why he rejects Common Descent:

“Where I’m not buying evolution in large scale, again goes back to the collection (or lack) of “transitionals” to prove this happened on a grander scale. All need to be in place for the large scale to have existed.

It’s one thing to make claims on microorganisms (and I can see it justified). It’s a far greater stretch to make the other areas fit.

This is not to say they can’t (God has that intellect), but proof that they did is very sparse at best call.”

My reply:

There are few transitional forms because they don’t exist. That’s because evolution is not usually gradual. Just like in human technologies, it’s almost instantaneous.

The proof of evolution is not the fossil record, it’s in the lab.

We can and do observe new species in real time – in the lab and in the field, in micro organisms and plants and animals. This happens through large leaps where you get a new species in 1-2 generations (through Horizontal Gene Transfer, Whole Genome Duplication and Inter-Species Hybridization). These mechanisms are well understood today, and they are very much purposefully adaptive and quite non-Darwinian.

Darwinists are in no hurry to tell you about any of this stuff, because once you take this into account they’re no closer to getting rid of God than they were 200 years ago. (These things don’t prove God, but what they do prove is that evolution is teleological. None of these things occur through random copying errors of DNA – far from it!)

And sadly, ID people aren’t in a hurry to tell you about these mechanisms either, because many of them deny common descent. The truth is in the middle, and the truth is 100% compatible with a theistic view. I submit to you that a God who creates an entire evolutionary process is far more impressive and inspiring than a God who merely creates a plant or an animal.

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17 Responses

  1. Nicolás says:

    It’s true that creating a mecanism for inteligent evolution would in no way diminish God, but I honestly can’t see how exactly the mechanisms you propose can really inteligently drive evolution in order for it to accomplish long-term objectives (not merely adapting to their enviroment).

    Although it’s true that I haven’t read your book, I read a very similar book called “Intelligent evolution” by Canadian PhD molecular biologist Claire Quinn. She, like you, talked about how epigenetics, HGT, etc.. drive adaptation in a non-random way, but certainly didn’t provide an explanation for how those mechanisms can achieve long-term objectives. Does your book adress this?

    Interestingly, she also talked about how bacteria were designed to transform the hostile early earth into am enviroment more suitable to higher life-forms.

    • The book addresses this as best as I think anybody knows how to address it at the present time. It describes how these various mechanisms combine together to produce coordinated overall progress. More importantly it highlights the questions we still don’t know answers to.

    • James Brutus says:

      Look, much of what EVOLUTION / Darwinism claims – especially regarding Natural selection through Mutation – has been debunked. Its Mathematically impossible and on many fronts, much of what EVOLUTION claims has to be taken on FAITH. The very thing Evolutionists disclaim religious belief!
      Science does not disprove Christianity – on the contrary, many of the discoverers of so many theories in science that you take for granted, did not have any problems believing in the Bible. You have to ask your self, what changed between then and now?
      Another interesting fact: More scientific discoveries important to todays technology happened more frequently then than now. Perhaps God gave them due grace for their belief, rather than their own academic brilliance.
      Remember, man did not invent SCIENCE, but has simply discovered the principles – the cogs that bring meaning to WHY, HOW and WHEN things happen.
      What most scientists do not ask them themselves is this: The scientific framework that seems orderly and full of explanatory laws and axioms – who was responsible for it?
      After all, if you dropped a heap of letters from a great height, it hardly creates great expectations that all letters will land meaningfully on the ground creating an amazing Shakespearean story! This happens in Biological systems, and we recognise this as information – but we do not attribute it to random mutations to bring about meaning: such is the dilemma for Evolutionists.
      Darwin set out to answer the origin of Species – and their evolutionary ladder into other species, ie the diversity of life on the planet.
      In the end, he was unable to answer either question – especially as the presence of DNA has gone a long way to debunk his theories. He could not account for DNA, and frankly he did not anticipate its presence either. So now scientists are finding plasters to patch up the wholes left behind from the nuclear fallout of scientific discoveries in micro-biology.
      Face it:
      Evolutionary theory is an alternative religious idea – which is why its at odds so much with the Bible. But you will never get a hardened Atheist to admit the existence of God, until they die and meet with Him face to face – by which time its too late.

      There is mounting evidence, from SCIENTISTS that no longer care about stunting their career progression just because they provide contrary evidence to DARWINISM.

      Darwins Black box : an amazing read…
      20 Questions against Evolution: another mighty read…
      Mathematical Impossibilities to the Evolutionary Theory…
      I can come up with at least 10 more books, but the 1st one alone is enough to convince me….

  2. “There are few transitional forms because they don’t exist”? Piffle. The fossil record is awash with transitional forms, many of which have literally been predicted in advance, such as the double-jaw-joint probainognathids in the reptile-mammal transition case and the wasp-ant sphecomyrmids. Now it is true that antievolutionists do not allow transitional forms to exist, in principle, and engage in positively gymnastic maneuvers to do that, while never quite explaining what a form would need to look like to satisfy their never-clarified standards. But that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. I’ve explored the fossil transition case in my #TIP project at http://www.tortucan.wordpress.com, and covered the reptile-mammal transition case (and all antievolutionary counter claimants) in my current book “Evolution Slam Dunk” (including the broad supporting developmental and genetic data that are constantly being utilized by the paleontological community). Your statement here leaves me wondering what of the paleontological record you have bumped into to have thought as you do.

    • Michael Bellamy says:

      Hello James.. I must say I have missed your rallying cries against God and the overwhelming case for a recent creation. Perry has thrown a big spanner in the works with his $10 million challenge by actually defining INFORMATION rigorously and correctly in contrast to your associates who muddle the term to hide the truth. The predictable fact no one will ever win that prize simply confirms the truth that digital communications systems can only be designed because they all require a language which cannot arise from nature.. QED.

    • James Brutus says:

      Hello,

      What intrigues me is when fossil records have to be falsified to give a fitting account to your evolutionary framework.
      Its like investigators only looking at evidence that supports the pre-defined conclusion, rather than reaching a given conclusion because that is what the evidence dictates. I dont know if you appreciate the difference?

      You ever watch: In the Heat of the Night.
      Scientific investigation should be like Officer Virgil Tibbs and not like the Chief Officer of the town. Prejudice should not blind you to facts!!! Frankly, I suppose that is what prejudice does anyway – so why would we expect an impartial conclusion.

      Then again, EVOLUTIONARY theory has been used by modern generations to justify evil acts of one race upon another – why should that be so surprising.
      It perfectly justifies COLONIALISM / IMPERIALISM and its agenda. It most certainly justified NAZISM and for that matter FACISM. You will find these camps bask in Darwinistic ideologies like we rely on our SUN for life on this planet.
      The crimes in Russian revolution, The genocide in Cambodia, The colonisation of Africa, the capturing of other races as slaves – all have their foundations in Evolutionary Theory – which has certainly profited the pursuers immensely – so why give it up now? Especially when it entails having to confess to other of your mistakes and apologise. We cant have that!!! Evolution is not concerned with ETHICS…
      That is another interesting story: Perhaps you can start explaining where you get your Ethical laws from DARWINISM?
      Take your time…!

      • We get that you believe all this quite fervently, but just know that the paleontological community regards such sentiments as claptrap. True, there are believers like Gunter Bechly over in the ID camp, who sort of accepts common descent but goes into waffle mode on all manner of specifics, not even disputing the reality of the reptile-mammal transition, but the working field paleontologists find evolutionary theory too useful to their work to indulge in the fantasy of ignoring it.

        • James Brutus says:

          James,
          You make a very poor assumption, that just because I believe the Bible fervently – its on sentiments only. You make the poor assumption that there is lack of evidence for the Bible claims. And therefore also, that Believers are incapable of rational thought or indeed understanding scientific endeavours.

          I can see why you find Richard Dawkins so appealing – such a rational Human being!

          What is also interesting is how Darwinists / Evolutionists trivialise conflicting evidence to their theories – ignoring much scientific evidence that does not fit their scope of ideology.

          Lets recall some lessons in History:
          Well Einstein was ridiculed by other Scientists when he first proposed the Theory of Relativity. Until he started to demonstrate it Mathematically… but to begin with he was a laughing stock. Often the first Human behaviour, when we meet with evidence so new and far removed from anything we are comfortable with.

          This irrational Human response does not devalue hard evidence, not even ignoring it will do…

          Another case was that of Galileo and Copernicus, who through observation disputed the widely held view that the Earth was the centre of our Solar system.
          It wasnt just the church that took this flawed view, but many scientists roasted Galileo and Copernicus for their views.
          By the way – the Earth being the centre originated from Greek myths of Aristostle. So adapting views built on false foundations often proves the downfall.

          Strange that the Bible never ever gave this Aristotle view – and if the Church had kept to scriptures, they would have been spot on…
          But recall that scientists alike were not prepared to be corrected on this view. Rather, they wanted Galileo and Copernicus imprisoned and lashed for their outlandish views.

          Equally, when Darwin made many accounts of Evolution – he was lacking much in the knowledge of Micro Biology – especially about DNA (the keys to life). Thus his explanations came way short of even explaining life itself, nevermind its origins.

          Ever since the invention of the Electron microscope that started to reveal the marvels of the Microscopic World – and especially how-it-works – which by the way is sufficient to debunk Evolutionary Theory…
          But Humans just dont like giving up their traditions that easily no matter what scientific evidence reveals. Tough having to drop Darwinism and starting again…!

          On the other hand, in 5000 years – the Bible has not been wrong once! I find that an uncanning stats – it gets my attention.
          Compare that to scientists that have had to correct so many mistakes in the short history of science (400 years).

          You really have to hate God to ignore observable evidence in creation.
          You Evolutionists behave like: Just because you understand the composition of a painting – you dont need to account for the painter.
          Unless as you believe, that paintings self sustain and paint themselves – so we never have to account for a painter…

        • Michael Bellamy says:

          Hello again James..
          I am surprised how you keep coming back and quoting your much loved reptile – mammal transition story when you can’t even identify the first mammal? Ok but lets take a simpler approach and get one single fact straight or not whatever turns out to be the case. Because to falsify a theory you should know we only need one example. Here it comes.. are you ready?

          Snakes with fixed fangs are called “primitive” .. no, and snakes with folding fangs are a more recent upgrade right? So please give us all a link to a reference that explains how fixed fangs ‘evolved’ gradually into folding fangs? And I will tell you why it’s claptrap ok!

          • I keep returning to the RMT to remind everyone how creationists like you have no explanation for them. You certainly offered none yet again. You continue to illustrate why creationism is so irrelevant to modern science.

            Make no mistake about it: absolutely nothing said here changes the facts, nor alters the thinking of any of the professionals in the field. It’s all wheel-spinning.

            By all means write your own monograph and persuade someone who matters, a notable paleontologist for instance, instead of dithering in venues like this.

            You jump away from RMT to bring up snake fangs. We’ll await your monograph that there is a problem there to begin with, but you’d better get at least as detailed as PZ Myers did 13 years ago when he discussed the subject https://pandasthumb.org/archives/2008/07/evolving-snake.html regarding Vonk’s paper:

            Vonk, Freek J., Jeroen F. Admiraal, Kate Jackson, Ram Reshef, Merijn A. G. de Bakker, Kim Vanderschoot, Iris van den Berge, Marit van Atten, Erik Burgerhout, Andrew Beck, Peter J. Mirtschin, Elazar Kochva, Frans Witte, Bryan G. Fry, Anthony E. Woods, & Michael K. Richardson. 2008. “Evolutionary origin and development of snake fangs.” Nature 454 (31 July): 630-633.

            • Michael Bellamy says:

              Quotes from your ‘Pandas Thumb’ anti creation motivated pseudoscience blog..
              “Now here’s a lovely piece of work that uses snake embryology to come to some interesting conclusions about how venomous fangs evolved.” WHAT!!

              How does looking at a fully formed creatures embryonic development controlled by it’s DNA tell you how it evolved from something else in the distant past? On the basis of “imagined” relationships because of similarities in appearance..!! Its about the same as imagining a Lycoming flat four aero engine was developed from a Volkswagon engine. Superficial similarities are insufficient to conclude anything definite about their past.

              “We can imagine all kinds of scenarios that would produce that condition” and there it is just IMAGINE.. no actual evidence shown or required.

              “Subsequently, the posterior teeth and venom gland could have become modified and formed the fang-gland complex” on the other hand if you took account of the details they ignored you might think ‘could not have become modified’ by random messing around!

              “The fang/venom gland complex probably evolved once in the common ancestor of these groups, but the elapids and vipers independently stumbled on a secondary change” why only once? So it looks too complicated too low a probability to stumble accross in a billion of so DNA bases of instruction. Why not apply the same logic to the whole creature which has no common ancestor with anything,

              To top this all off the pictures have been removed and the text nowhere answers the question I actually asked!

              James when are you going realize that “imagining” stuff is not science at all.. that’s fairyland..
              So what about those FOLDING FANGS?

  3. Derek Smith says:

    Intelligence, Long Term objectives, Adaptation – these are terms that have no place in the understanding of evolution.

    In large scale life forms (as distinct from single cellular), hybridisation is the engine of diversity and ‘Natural Selection’ is the engine of change.

    The formation of an F1 hybrid is a matter of geography, compatability and luck. For F1s to be formed, there needs to exist a hybridisation zone, a geographical area cohabited by both interbreeding species, which are sufficiently compatable as to be able to engage in sexual activity and produce a viable F1 offspring (wild herds of mules are a classic example).

    The F1 has a complete copy of the genome from each parent, and when the F1 comes to produce its sexual gametes for its own reproduction, then a mismatch occures between those two genomes, causing a storm of random change. Consequently, effective fertility is critically reduced with most gametes being simply non viable. But when the F1s back breed sufficiently often, luck comes into play and eventually a viable F1 gamete is produced and fertilised, creating the start of a potentially new species.

    This new hybrid will suffer from all the problems of genetic chaos typical of new hybrids, and it is this diversity which is the fuel for the relentless culling of natural selection. Together, hybrid instability coupled with natural selection, sculpt a new life form able to utilise an available niche. The ultimate ‘luck’ situation – no planning, no intelligence, no objectives – just luck of the draw.

    • Derek,

      Prove that the changes you describe as random are really random.

      This is much harder than you probably think. If you have evidence, present it. And gird your loins.

      And by the way Natural Selection is not an engine of change. It is only a source of elimination.

    • Greg Williams says:

      Derek it sounds like there needs to be quite a few favourable parameters in place for the magic “luck” to produce anything. Your faith is misplaced perhaps? Its like saying if I gave you a bag of letters with 2 vowels (let’s say O and U) and one consonant (lets say R) that if you threw the letters on the floor its pure luck when it forms the work “OUR”(eventually). When we all know that the one who packed the bag stacked the odds, and luck has little to do with it. If you isolate the “luck moment” from the obviously arranged and designed informational elements that dictate certain outcomes, you’re more like a religious zealot who want to sweep aside certain facts and put your faith in the thing that comforts you most: in this case, the conceit that there is no God. But it’s been a while since 2017. Perhaps things have changed for you.

    • James Brutus says:

      Hello Derek,

      With the luck that Evolution needs to succeed, it is no wonder you do not believe in miracles. Evolution needs more miracles than people of religious faith – because much of the luck you rely on for Evolutionary processes to be successful are way beyond Mathematical probabilities.

      This LUCK is as close to impossible as the Moon is to Earth in relation to where the star Bettleguise in relation to Earth. Think about that alone – and you will still insist that that amount of luck can still account for the diversity of life on this planet.

      Consider just this one aspect of Life:
      All living things, with the exception of plants, breathe oxygen for sustinance / life. They all exhale carbon dioxide.

      Plants on the other hand do this process in reverse.

      What a convinient spark in the equation, for if this were not the case – no living thing on the planet would survive.
      So plants re-cycle the atmosphere for all other living things to even have a chance at life – do you think that was also a cosmic accident?

      Just exactly, when did the evolutionary process make the choice of supporting oxygen molecules as opposed to carbon dioxide just as the plants do it. For just a matter of debate – can you explain why oxygen was chosen as a preference to Nitrogen – after all: Nitrogen has the bigger percentage. Your evolutionary process should really have naturally taken Nitrogen to make full advantage of availability.
      Of all the gases available – can you give an evolutionary account of why oxygen was favoured by all living animals in preference to all other gases.
      Why did the biological system even develop to work with Oxygen, why specifically oxygen? Dont just think of convinience, because that alone does not constitute a scientific answer.
      While you are at it – consider that there are bacteria that live under a pure environment of sulphur and can survive temperatures of 200 degrees C – so OXYGEN was not their 1st choice. How did that even happen on your evolutionary ladder?

      Take all the time you need to come up with an adequate explanation: you need to pursuade me with much more than just LUCK!

      The fact that plants reverse the carbon dioxide / oxygen cycle is enough to emphasize a designed system to specifically support life!
      Not a cosmic accident as you would like us to believe of EVOLUTION!

  4. Tim Constable says:

    It doesn’t matter how watertight a system of ideas is, it doesn’t prove that’s what happened.

  5. James Brutus says:

    To all Evolutionists that state that God does not exist:

    Here is a quote from Psalm 14:1

    Only fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, and their actions are evil; not one of them does good! (New Living Translation)

    This was stated over 3000 years ago – and it holds true today and will hold true tomorrow until Jesus makes his 2nd appearance to put this debate beyond discussion!

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