News to Note, July 2, 2011

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint

How to take a dino’s temp, multicellularity missing the mark, solar surprises, flapping up the wrong (evolutionary) tree, speciation’s secrets

1. Dinosaur Teeth Hold Clues to Whether Species Was Warm or Cold-Blooded

Warm-blooded, cold-blooded, or none-of-the-above?

2. Multicellular Life Grows In Test Tube

Selecting for snowflakes or evolution of multicellularity?

3. Sun and Planets Built Differently Says Nasa

Genesis captures solar wind and blows a hole in the nebular hypothesis.

4. Flap-Running Considered the Link Between Dinosaurs and Flight

Why fly when you can flap-run up the evolutionary tree?

5. Are Genetic Mechanisms For Speciation Multiple Choice?

Speciation’s secrets are multiple-choice.

And Don’t Miss . . .

  • “Unlike asteroids, which appear point-like in images, the telltale sign that gave [the newly discovered comet] away was its fuzzy appearance.” Comet C/2011 L4 “may be coming around the sun for the first and only time, only to be ejected from the solar system, never to return,” astronomer Wainscoat said. “The current path of the comet is typical of those thought to be originating from the Oort cloud.” Yet the Oort cloud has never been observed. The Oort cloud’s existence was hypothesized as a birthplace for long-period comets. If our solar system were really as old as big bang cosmology asserts, our comets would have fizzled long ago.1
  • Russian astronomer Andrei Finkelstein is confident that “Life exists on other planets and we will find it within 20 years.” Why is he so certain? Because “[t]he genesis of life is as inevitable as the formation of atoms. . . . 10% of the known planets circling suns in the galaxy resemble Earth,” he says. “If water can be found there, then so can life.” His evolutionary presuppositions convince him that, with the right raw materials and enough time, evolution is inevitable. He believes the aliens we encounter will look pretty much like us. While the Bible does not specifically deny the existence of alien life forms, we need to remember that evolutionary presuppositions drive the urgent search for intelligent space neighbors. Furthermore, since the entire creation was corrupted by Adam’s sin (according to Romans 8:21–22) and since Christ died to save Adam’s descendents (according to 1 Corinthians 15:22), humanoid aliens would not be eligible for salvation in Christ. See Don’t Alienate the Aliens.
  • The Supreme Court, striking down a law restricting sales of violent video games to minors, rendered the following interesting pronouncement: “Our cases hold that minors are entitled to a significant degree of First Amendment protection. Government has no free-floating power to restrict the ideas to which they may be exposed.” We only mention this judicial ruling to point out the curious contrast with those who urge lawmakers to protect students from being exposed to the notion that there could be scientifically plausible alternatives to evolutionary dogma.
  • An extinct species of mayfly has been found preserved in amber. Unlike this specimen, modern mayflies do not have ovipositors (an egg-laying mechanism). “This species is now extinct. It probably had to lay its eggs on a certain type of substrate or habitat that disappeared, and the species disappeared with it,” suggests entomologist George Poinar, Jr. Like most fossils encased in amber, this specimen is assigned a particularly ancient date—97–110 million years ago. Read more about the dubious dating of amber fossils at
  • A bone carving of a mammoth or mastodon, the first American “prehistoric art” found depicting a trunk, is pictured in the latest Journal of Archaeological Science. “There was considerable skepticism expressed about the authenticity of the incising on the bone until it was examined exhaustively.” And “it was heavily mineralized, which prevented standard dating.” Archaeologists assume the Florida find is at least 13,000 years old because they believe mammoths became extinct in the Americas by then. Learn more about post-Flood preservation of mammoth fossils at

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  1. More problems for the ‘Oort comet cloud’


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