News to Note, February 10, 2007

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint


1. AP: “New exhibit details human origins

In New York City, a new 9,000-square-foot (836 m2) exhibit hall at the American Museum of Natural History is the latest effort to woo the public into accepting evolution. The exhibit focuses on bringing together pro-evolution interpretations of the fossil record and of genomic science.

In addition, the new exhibit, which replaces the “Hall of Human Biology and Evolution,” includes casts of more than 200 fossils and artifacts and lures visitors in with “a host of technology and interactive features” in addition to dioramas. The exhibit “introduces genomics concepts and shows how close our DNA is to that of other primates such as bonobos and chimpanzees,” and will showcase a vial containing the actual DNA extracted from a Neandertal fossil.

Although the exhibit will certainly go a long way toward indoctrinating students and adults, it is, in a way, a compliment to the rising creation movement and the soon-to-open Creation Museum; major secular museums may now feel an increased need to expand their pro-evolution operations in an attempt to counter this rise and the Creation Museum that will open this May.

2. LiveScience: “Charles Darwin's Big Blunder Revealed

We’ve got to admit it: the headline of this article had us curious for a minute—which of Darwin’s “big blunders” would be revealed? As it turns out, the so-called “big blunder” was simply his omission of a preface for the original edition of On the Origin of Species (1859), an omission which some interpreted as Darwin’s refusal to acknowledge his intellectual predecessors.

And indeed Darwin, whose name is nearly synonymous with evolutionary theory, owed much to scientists and non-scientists who went ahead of him.

Interestingly, the article references Charles Lyell, the lawyer-turned-geologist who advanced uniformitarian ideas of long ages and slow, gradual processes that are crucial within evolutionary theory. Strangely, Lyell was not acknowledged by Darwin, who later claimed he simply “forgot all about” Lyell’s ideas. The article quotes historian Curtis Johnson, who explains that Lyell’s book Principles of Geology “anticipates evolutionary thought” and argues that Lyell should have been at the top of Darwin’s list to thank. We agree; evolutionary theory owes a great deal to old-earth ideas, and creation compromises are very often linked hand-in-hand with unbiblical, evolutionary ideas.

3. Logic With and Behind Creationism

There’s usually little doubt, when an opinion piece is headlined as this one is, that the author is no friend of creation research. This article, from USA TODAY, upholds the trend.

4. “3-D model shows big body of water in Earth’s mantle

A new 3-D model of the earth’s interior indicates that there could be a significant underground water reservoir, perhaps as large as the Arctic Ocean, in the earth’s mantle. The new model, developed by Washington University professor Michael E. Wysession and a former student, analyzed seismogram data and determined that there is “a large area in Earth’s lower mantle beneath eastern Asia where water is damping out, or attenuating, seismic waves from earthquakes.”

This interesting discovery may further our knowledge of exactly what the “fountains of the great deep” (Genesis 7:11) unleashed. For further details, see Flood topic page.

5. AP: “Ancient boy’s skeleton sparks evolution debate”

In an ongoing battle covered in previous editions of News to Note (see "August 19, 2006, item and "September 16, 2006, item ), Kenyan bishop Boniface Adoyo is vocally opposing a new display at the National Museum of Kenya that will display supposed apeman fossils, such as that of “Turkana Boy.” As we previously said, we understand—and agree with—Bishop Adoyo’s opposition to evolutionary indoctrination. However, we strongly disagree with the idea that so-called “missing link” fossils should be censored or hidden away; rather, our goal would be that a biblical explanation of origins (including the truth about “apemen”) accompany the fossils.

In an odd revelation, this AP story reveals that Bishop Adoyo “believes the world was created 12,000 years ago, with man appearing 6,000 years later. He says each biblical day was equivalent to 1,000 Earth years.” It seems Adoyo is applying 2 Peter 3:8 to the interpretation of Genesis 1, yielding a strange reading that is neither plain nor lengthy enough to accommodate evolutionary ideas.

6. ScienceDaily: “Conscience, Religion Alter How Doctors Tell Patients About Options

A University of Chicago study, published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine, discovered (or perhaps merely confirmed) that “[m]any physicians feel no obligation to tell patients about legal but morally controversial medical treatments or to refer patients to doctors who do not object to those treatments.” The study, which examines such issues as doctors’ willingness to suggest abortion and distribute contraceptives, raises an important question: if a naturalistic, evolutionary origin of humans is continually taught to tomorrow’s doctors, and if these doctors accept these views and adopt “evolutionary morality,” what solutions will they be prescribing?

Remember, if you see a news story that might merit some attention, let us know about it! And thanks to all of our readers who have submitted great news tips to us. If you didn’t catch last week’s News to Note, why not take a look at it now? See you next week!


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