News to Note, January 12, 2008

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint

Featured in News to Know

Read this week’s News to Note to find out why America is doomed, whether or not evolutionists are grasping at feathers, bone ice skates, an “inconvenient” galaxy, and a new Christian travel guide.

1. US Doomed If Creationist President Elected: Scientists

There will be trouble if the United States elects a creation-believing president, according to a scientist representing the National Academy of Sciences (NAS).

2. BBC News: “Flesh Wound Reveals Dino Secrets

A new fossil found in China is giving paleontologists “unprecedented understanding” of dinosaur skin—which, some paleontologists are quick to note, just might have been covered in feathers.

Coming from an area of China that is renowned for “uniquely-preserved fossils,” the fossilized Psittacosaurus discussed in the (British) Royal Society’s journal Proceedings B offers “the first detailed picture of what dinosaurs were like deep under the skin,” reports BBC News.

“The plant-eating Psittacosaurus had a thick layer of shark-like skin hidden under scales or feathers,” the story reports—thick skin that likely supported the dinosaur’s organs and protected it from predators. The article adds that the the tough, scaly skin had more than 25 layers of collagen, similar to modern sharks, reptiles, and dolphins. Of course, it is notable that though there is no presented evidence of feathers on this dinosaur, the reporting scientists (and thus the BBC News article) hasten to add that the skin just might have been covered by feathers.

Psittacosaurus was a gazelle-sized, plant-eating dinosaur that the University of Portsmouth’s Mark Witton describes as “a tubby little animal walking around on its back legs.” Witton likens the Psittacosaurus’s eating habits to a pig’s.

In the case of this particular Psittacosaurus, the skin was punctured before fossilization—probably by a scavenger, the tooth marks suggest. The article reports:

Tooth marks and fractures in the skin suggest it was attacked by another dinosaur, and then covered by sediment rapidly after its demise, allowing soft tissue to be preserved in remarkable detail.

“Covered by sediment rapidly after its demise?” Does that sound familiar?

3. PhysOrg: “Astronomers Describe New Evidence of ‘Inconvenient’ Galaxy

An entire galaxy stands in the way of the general understanding of galactic spiral arms, according to research presented this week to the American Astronomical Society at a meeting in Austin, Texas.

Scientists from the University of Alabama, Bevill Community College, and (formerly) the U.S. Naval Observatory presented a “puzzling” conclusion from their astronomical observations: a spiral galaxy whose arms wind in the opposite direction from most galaxies—something the University of Alabama’s Gene Byrd calls “an inconvenient truth to many . . . [but] nonetheless, a reality.” The conclusion is based on observations of two components within the galaxy, NGC4622, which is some 200 million light-years from earth in the constellation Centaurus.

Byrd explained, “Contrary to conventional wisdom, with both an inner counter-clockwise pair and an outer clockwise pair of spiral arms, NGC4622 must have a pair of leading arms.” Since the galaxy must rotate one way, one of the pairs of arms—either the inner counter-clockwise pair or the outer clockwise pair—must be in the same direction as the galaxy’s rotation.

The team’s results will be published in Astronomical Journal.

This finding reminds us that “well-established science,” even when intuitive, is frequently contradicted by unexpected observations and data-crunching. Theories that were lauded as undeniably true by yesterday’s scientists often turn up in the dustbin of science history as observations expand and new hypotheses accumulate. Knowing this, which would you rather put your faith in: current science theories that change from decade to decade or the inerrant, unchanging Word of the Creator God?

4. Bone Ice Skates Invented for Travel

Human travelers from five millennia ago raced across icy lakes on skates made from animal bones, reports National Geographic News on research appearing in this month’s Linnean Society of London Biological Journal.

5. The Christian Travel Planner, a New Travel Guide, Includes the Creation Museum

Nelson Ministry Services will be releasing Kevin J. Wright’s Christian Travel Planner next month, and the travel guide includes a mention of AiG’s Creation Museum.

Within the more than 400 pages of travel information is a small section (just over two pages) on the Creation Museum. The author writes, under “Why should I visit”:

The Creation Museum presents a unique and unparalleled experience—a walk through time that portrays significant, life-altering events from the past, illuminating the effects of biblical history on our present and future world.

Wright adds, “Be prepared to experience history in a completely unprecedented way.” We couldn’t agree with him more! Whatever your age, familiarity with the Bible, or experience with museums, we know you’ll be impressed with the state-of-the-art exhibits in our walk through the Bible’s history. For more information on the Creation Museum, be sure to visit For more information on the Christian Travel Planner, visit

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