By: Dr. John Ankerberg and Dr. John Weldon; ©2002 |
“Faith Beyond Reason” The authors point out that even secular scientists have trouble dealing with the overwhelming odds against “the so-called neo-Darwinian Theory” of evolution. |
Dr. Harry Rimmer (SC.D., D.D.) was allegedly one of only 12 men around 1940 capable of understanding Einstein’s theory of relativity. He was precisely correct when he wrote the following: “I fail to see how the natural man can scoff at the faith of a Christian who believes in one miracle of creation, when the unbeliever accepts multiplied millions of miracles to justify his violation of every known law of biology and every evidence of paleontology, and to cling to the exploded myth of evolution.”^{[1]}
To this point in our discussion we have cited mostly creation scientists or theists. Evolutionists may respond that creationists have a bias to uphold and thus our methodology or conclusions are suspect. So next will continue and amplify our probability argument exclusively from the writings of evolutionists.
The esteemed late Carl Sagan and other prominent scientists have estimated the chance of man evolving at roughly 1 chance in 10^{2,000,000,000}.^{[2]} This is a figure with two billion zeros after it and would require about 2,000 books to write out. This number is so infinitely small it is not even conceivable. So, for argument’s sake, let’s take an infinitely more favorable view toward the chance that evolution might occur.
What if the chances are only 1 in 10^{1000} the figure that a prestigious symposium of evolutionary scientists used computers to arrive at? This figure involved only a mechanism necessary to abiogenesis and not the evolution of actual primitive life. Regardless, this figure is also infinitely above Borél’s single law of chance—(1 chance in 10^{50})—beyond which, put simply, events never occur.^{[3]}
On April 25 and 26, 1962, a scientific symposium was held at the Wistar Institute of Anatomy and Biology in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in which some of the most distinguished evolutionist scientists were gathered.
At the beginning of this Symposium, which was entitled, “Mathematical Challenges to the Neo-Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution,” the Chairman, Sir Peter Medawar of the National Institute for Medical Research in London, England, stated the reasons why they had gathered:
In his paper, “Inadequacies of Neo-Darwinian Evolution as a Scientific Theory,” Dr. Murray Eden, Professor of Electrical Engineering at MIT, emphasized the following: “It is our contention that if “random” [chance] is given a serious and crucial interpretation from a probabilistic point of view, the randomness postulate is highly implausible and that an adequate scientific theory of evolution must await the discovery and elucidation of new natural laws, physical, chemical and biological.”^{[5]}
In “Algorithms and the Neo-Darwinian Theory of Evolution” Marcel P. Schutzenberger of the University of Paris, France, calculated the probability of evolution based on mutation and natural selection. Like many other noted scientists, he concluded that it was “not conceivable” because the probability of a chance process accomplishing this is zero:
Evolutionary scientists have called just 1 chance in 10^{15} “a virtual impossibility.”^{[7]} So, how can they believe in something that has less than 1 chance in 10^{1000}? After all, how small is one chance in 10^{1000}? It’s incredibly small—1 chance in 10^{12} is only one chance in a trillion.
We can further gauge the size of 1 in 10^{1000} (a figure with a thousand zeros) by considering the sample figure 10^{171}. How large is this figure? First, consider that the number of atoms in the period at the end of this sentence is approximately 3,000 trillion. Now, in 10^{171} years an amoeba could actually transport all the atoms, one at a time, in six hundred thousand, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion universes, each universe the size of ours, from one end of the universe to the other (assuming a distance of 30 billion light years) going at the dismally slow traveling speed of 1 inch every 15 billion years.^{[8]} The amoeba could do all this in 10^{171} years. Yet this figure of one chance in 10^{171}, quite literally, cannot even scratch the surface of one chance in 10^{1000}—the “chance” that a certain mechanism necessary to the beginning of life might supposedly evolve. Again, who can believe in something whose odds are 1 “chance” in 10^{1000} to 1 “chance” in 10^{2,000,000,000} or even far beyond this? As we saw previously, Yale University physicist Harold Morowitz once calculated the odds of a single bacteria reassembling its components after being superheated to break down its chemicals into their basic building blocks at 1 chance in 10^{100,000,000,000}.^{[9]} And, in fact, when you add up all the different odds for all the millions of miracles necessary for evolution, the actual “chances” that life could evolve probably couldn’t even be adequately expressed mathematically.
Please note that in exponential notation, every time we add a single number in the exponent, we multiply the number itself by a factor of ten. Thus, one chance in 10^{172} is ten times larger than one chance in 10^{171}. One chance in 10^{177} is one million times larger than one chance in 10^{171}. And one chance in 10^{183} is one trillion times larger than one chance in 10^{171}. So where do you think we end up with odds like one chance in 10^{100,000,000,000}? In fact, the dimensions of the entire known universe can be packed full by 10^{50} planets—but the odds of probability theory indicate that not on even a single planet would evolution ever occur.^{[10]}