By Babu G. Ranganathan
Bill Nye, in his debate with Ken Ham, alleged that science does not support belief in creation. Nye is wrong.
What really is science? There are two types of science. Empirical science is the knowledge of an event or a thing witnessed through our senses. You know that the moon exists. You can see it! You know that the chair exists because you can see it or feel its support.
The other type of science is forensic science. Forensic science is not direct knowledge but indirect knowledge of something. You didn't witness the person's death and you didn't see how he died, but through careful collection and analysis of evidence you are able to determine how the death occurred.
The scientific method is used every day in forensic science to determine whether an event in a crime scene was an accident or by design and intention. Mathematical probability is a scientific argument and is frequently used in determining many issues of scientific inquiry.
The scientific method cannot be used to prove events that occurred outside of human observation. No one observed the origin of the universe by either chance or design (so neither can be proved by science), but scientific evidence via mathematical probability can be used to support either a chance or design origins for the universe.
Some things don't need experiment or scientific proof. In law there is a dictum called prima facie evidence. It means "evidence that speaks for itself." Of course, in the complexities of human society and relationships, prima facie may not always be what it seems.
An example of a true prima facie would be if you discovered an elaborate sand castle on the beach. You don't have to experiment to know that it came by design and not by the chance forces of wind and water.
If you discovered a romantic letter or message written in the sand, you don't have to experiment to know that it was by design and not because a stick randomly carried by wind sketched it there. You naturally assume that an intelligent and rational being was responsible.
Mathematicians have said that any event with odds of 10 to the 50th power or over is impossible even within the entire time frame of the supposed billions of years popularly assigned for the age of the universe.
The odds of an average protein molecule coming into existence by chance are 10 to the 65th power. That's just one protein molecule! Even the simplest cell is composed of millions of them.
The late great British scientist Sir Frederick Hoyle calculated that the odds of the simplest cell forming by chance are 10 to the 40,000th power! How big is this? Consider that the number of atoms in the whole known universe is only 10 to the 23rd power.
It has been shown that amino acids can come into existence by chance, but it has never been shown that these basic building blocks can come together into a sequence by chance to form protein molecules.
An amazing fact is that there are left-handed and right-handed amino acids. In life all the protein molecules have to be made up of left-handed amino acids as well as be in the right sequence. If a right-handed amino acid gets into the mix the protein won't work.
DNA, the genetic code, also is made up of various smaller molecules (nucleic acids) that have to be together in a precise sequence in order for the DNA to work. There are left-handed and right-handed sugar molecules making-up nucleic acids. In order to get a working DNA molecule the various nucleic acids have to be not only in a precise sequence but they also have to contain only right-handed sugar molecules. If a nucleic acid with a left-handed sugar molecule gets into the mix then the DNA won't work.
Information, in any form, is positive evidence for intelligent origin. That's what DNA (the genetic code) is, information. Even Carl Sagan said sequential radio signals from space would be evidence of intelligent origin. What about the sequence of molecules in the genetic code? The sequence of molecules in DNA, that make it a code, is powerful prima facie evidence for an intelligent origin and cause.
What about "Junk DNA"? It isn't junk! Recent research published in scientific journals such as Nature and RNA has revealed that the "non-coding" segments of DNA are essential in regulating gene expression (i.e. when, where, and how genes are expressed in the body).
Explaining how an airplane works doesn't mean no one made the airplane. Explaining how life or the universe works doesn't mean there was no Maker behind them. Science and natural laws merely explain how the order in the universe works and operates, but mere undirected natural laws can never explain the ultimate origin of that order.
Once you have a complete and living cell then the genetic code and biological machinery exist to direct the formation of more cells, but how could life or the cell have naturally originated when no directing code and mechanisms existed in nature?
Time is no help to chance. For every good accident there will be thousands of bad ones with the net result, over time, being deleterious, not beneficial. A partially evolved cell (an oxymoron) that is unprotected by a fully functioning cell membrane would disintegrate in the open environment long before it could evolve into a complete and living cell.
True science shows it's not rational to believe we're here by chance, even within the evolutionary time frame of billions of years. True science shows that the universe is not eternal and could not have come from nothing by natural processes.
The author, Babu G. Ranganathan, has his bachelor's degree with concentrations in theology and biology and has been recognized for his writings on religion and science in the 24th edition of Marquis "Who's Who in The East."