Joshua and Cornelius get to know each other

So how is it that these, which I posted earlier, not qualify?

Here is the Table of Contents of Cornelius’s collection of failed Evolutionary predictions…

Image of the the Contents below…

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@Cornelius_Hunter… you did yourself no favor by burying all those failed predictions into a single link…

… with no commentary, no title, no examples… just a word with a light blue highlighting …

But never fear… as you see above… I took care of the heavy lifting of providing the details to the readers…

George Brooks

If this is the case that you are relying on, then it’s simply a case of someone taking the time to explain to you why you are misunderstanding the data. For example - one claim is called “similar species share similar genes”. To claim this as a failed prediction takes quite a bit of hutzpah, but, there it is.

A brief scan of your article claiming this as a failed prediction reveals that you are both cherry picking exceptions, and misunderstanding the data of other papers. There isn’t a paper more recent than 2013 in there, and most of the papers come from an even earlier time when genomes were being newly annotated, and many false positives for “genes found in species X but not in species Y” were being reported - but understood to perhaps be false positives pending further work.

Beyond that, we expect that a few de novo genes should be lineage specific. This isn’t surprising. It doesn’t even come close to swamping the clear signal of common ancestry.

Even back then there was an overwhelming correspondence known between the genes of related species. Humans and chimpanzees have 29% of their proteins that are identical at the amino acid level, for goodness sake - and the average amino acid divergence between our species is only two amino acids per protein. This was reported in 2010. The entire genome sequence of humans and chimpanzees is 95% identical to each other (also reported in 2010). You make no mention of these data in your article.

Similar problems abound in your other articles claiming that evolution has failed.

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Hello Dr. Hunter,

Our friend @DennisVenema did not provide the full argument, so I can understand how you might take it as purely rhetorical. My understanding of the argument is this: embryonic development shows us how the genomes of different species take similar structures (inherited via common descent) and shape them in different ways (via divergent regulatory gene networks).

The interesting thing about this argument is that it is confirmed by DNA analysis. Anyone with some math aptitude and about $20 can use BLAST to compare the DNA of a blue whale with that of other mammals to verify the similarities. Moreover, the role of HOX genes in articulating limb development across the animal kingdom (fish, mammals, reptiles) has been an outstanding advance in biology over the past two decades or so.

@DennisVenema - please feel free to correct to correct any misstatements or elaborate to fill in any gaps.

Ultimately, of course, there is a philosophy of science at work in the development of any scientific theory. The Baconian motivation for the theory of evolution is also the underlying philosophy that undergirds relativity, quantum mechanics, the big bang theory, plate tectonics, organic chemistry, etc. You have a mobile phone in your pocket because of Baconian-motivated science. Your ability to post comments in this thread with a computing device is the fruit of Baconian-motivated science. Your ability to drive a motor vehicle over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house is the fruit of Baconian-motivated geology, which allows us to find and exploit petroleum reserves.

As you attack the Baconian roots of biological research, you are living on the fruits of Baconian science conducted by millions of scientists and engineers over several centuries. Maybe you do not appreciate the irony of your stance, but the rest of us here do.

Of course, there are even more important things that we agree on in faith, and I don’t want us to lose sight of that common ground.

Blessings,

Chris Falter

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Like my friend @AMWolfe, I am a non-specialist following the discussion. In regard to (i), I assume that by “naturalistic origins” you mean origins that are the product of time+chance alone, disallowing the involvement of God in the process.

First, I would simply note that everyone already recognizes that evolution does not explain everything. Pointing out those areas where explanations are lacking may impress some people, but to me, it just highlights the need for further research. Your efforts here are counterproductive. The fact that the “holes” you struggle so mightily to find are so few compared to the vast amount of data that the theory does explain is remarkable. In the end, focusing so heavily on these “scientific issues with naturalistic origins” detracts from your position rather than adding to it. It is very similar to the arguments of people who reject the authority and inspiration of Scripture on the basis of a handful of perceived errors and inconsistencies. In other words, you are making the same type of argument, just coming from the opposite direction.

Second, everyone here affirms God as creator. None of us believe in purely naturalistic origins, if by that you mean time+chance is a sufficient explanation. As Christians, we may disagree exactly how and to what extent God was involved in evolution, but none of us denies that he was involved, including those of us here who actually work in the field.

In regard to (ii), if by “naturalistic origins thinking” you mean “thinking that God was not involved in our origins,” then you are correct that it is a metaphysical position. On the other hand, if you are implying that science, because it is based on methodological naturalism, is inherently atheistic and therefore biased, I would humbly suggest that you are barking up the wrong tree. Science – even evolutionary biology – is silent on metaphysics. All that it does is describe the physical world in physical terms. Our role as Christians is to keep science in its proper place and not allow it to overstep its bounds by making metaphysical claims, as per Dawkins and his ilk. That is where the problem occurs, not in the laboratory.

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Dr. Hunter,

I see two really serious issues in this passage. I want to raise them so that you can have a chance to clarify, if you care to do so.

(1) These statements imply that Christian scientists who believe in evolution are buying into an anti-theist, Epicurean worldview. Evolutionary thinking “has an Epicurean component;” therefore, if you agree with evolution, you are agreeing with Epicureanism.

As I have previously mentioned, you are off the mark in asserting an inherent relationship between Epicureanism and evolution. Yes, neo-Epicureans embraced evolution, but that embrace does not make it wrong. Neo-Epicureans also embrace vaccines, and relativity, and quantum mechanics… Nor does it mean that evolution fails if you reject Epicureanism. The theory of evolution rests quite solidly on a Baconian foundation.

Bacon certainly was not Epicurean; he simply felt that science and theology/philosophy needed boundaries in order to function well (and in a complementary fashion). I trust that this statement is uncontroversial.

(2) You contend that “leading advocates of evolution” (presumably you mean Dawkins, Gould, etc.) should be allowed to frame the terms of inquiry and metaphysical foundation for the theory of evolution.

This is preposterous. Who appointed Dawkins and Gould, rather than Francis Collins or Pope Francis? Why must we pay fealty to Dawkins and Gould and ignore Christian scientists who agree with neo-Epicureans on the science but disagree vehemently when the neo-Epicureans misuse the science?

I hope I am misunderstanding you. But you seem to be of two minds on the relationship between evolution and faith. At times, you speak of conciliation, and advocate letting the evidence lead our scientific conclusions. At other times, you speak of the (supposed) inherent Epicureanism of evolution. I am confused about what you really think.

Best regards,

Chris Falter

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You quote people asking a completely different question. Joshua’s question was a straightforward scientific question with no religious content. It was not metaphysical and it was not rhetorical. It was a typical scientific question which leads to a hypothesis and then a test of the hypothesis through experimentation. I note in passing that you have no answer for the question. Consequently you should defer to those who have a rational and evidence based answer for the question.

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You are mixing up the thread. That was a response to Dennis’s metaphysical points. These points run all through the evolution literature.

They aren’t metaphysical. As I pointed out, they are straightforward scientific questions with no religious content; not metaphysical and not rhetorical. What follows is a hypothesis and then experimentation to test the hypothesis. And I repeat, since you have no answer to them you should defer to those who have a rational and evidence based answer.

Jonathan, your denialism is striking. Rationalists do not view their axioms (or “universal criterion” as Chalmers put it) as anything beyond a straightforward given. There’s just no way there is any metaphysics at work. You see this over and over. Those who are beholden to metaphysics are utterly convinced they are free of metaphysics. Here is a helpful passage from Chalmers:

Hi Jon,

I agree with your stance overall. However, I think this sentence is an overstatement. Dr. Hunter has presented some evidence on his blog and here on the forum. What we can fairly say is that the other biologists on the forum find Hunter’s evidence severely wanting (out of date, well explained by non-cartoon versions of evolutionary models, etc.); that he has never presented a coherent alternative scientific model; and that he has not begun to address large swaths of the most important evidence that points to common descent. None of these considerations mean that he is wrong, per se; they only mean that he has a lot of work to do before he can really make an effective case (in their view).

Does that make sense?

Best Advent wishes,

Chris Falter

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Dr. Hunter,

Are the only choices available to us the Epicureanism of rationalists and the post-modernism of Chalmers? Is there not a way for the scientific community to proceed along the path of methodological naturalism?

Best Advent wishes,

Chris Falter

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You’re not addressing the point. The questions posed were not metaphysical or religious. They were requests to provide an explanation for specific data. Do you deny they were questions which could lead to scientifically testable hypotheses?

I was not commenting on what he’s wrong about, I was pointing out that when you’re asked a question and you don’t have an answer to the question, you should defer to those who have an evidence based answer to the question instead of claiming the answer is unknowable, or unknown, or that people who have an answer which you don’t like, are wrong.

No Chris, that would be circular. It would be perfectly fine in normal science, but of course we’re not doing normal science here, where evolution and CD are givens.

Being the messenger is a hard job :-/

Actually I did address the point.

Oh my, this is tedious. Let me guess Jonathan, you are a legalist. This is incredible denialism.

Please provide some evidence for your claim. I note you haven’t answered the question. Do you deny Dennis’ questions lead to scientifically testable hypotheses?

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Utterly pathetic. What an example of obfuscation. Rhetorical questions are not meant to be answered. They are intended to make a point. Just to review, here is what Dennis wrote:

Dennis was rebutting my point that evolution “makes little sense on the science.” The idea that God made embryonic whales to have four limbs and two nostrils is a non starter for evolutionists. His point, as is always the point in the evolutionary literature (and for which I gave several examples above), is that these examples defeat creationism/design. This is not a positivistic argument. This is a contrastive argument. It is a well known type of argument. There is no secret here.

The fact that I have had to labor through this, repeatedly, on this forum is pathetic. The level of absurd canards, feigned ignorance and obfuscation on display here for all to see is distasteful and tedious. I would have hoped there would at least be some basic level of honest acknowledgment of the premises. Instead we have pathetic denialism.

The question remains. Do you deny Dennis’ questions lead to scientifically testable hypotheses? I say they do. They are not simply rhetorical. Instead of blustering, just answer the question and present your model. Simple. That’s science.

The fact that common ancestry makes excellent sense of these observations is a scientific point, Cornelius, even if it carries rhetorical weight as well. If you say that evolution makes little sense scientifically, I’m wondering how these observations fit into your (as of yet unknown) alternative hypothesis. I am not trying to score rhetorical points - I’m genuinely interested, as all scientists are, in alternative hypotheses that have greater explanatory and predictive power than the current theory in play. Any new hypothesis will, however, at a minimum, have to deal with the body of evidence that is already known.

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