A Scientific Challenge to Darwin

These questions have been around for at least two decades — and have gone through many incarnations and reviews. I have used them to open up some memorable discussions with scientists and researchers; some ardent Darwin supporters and some who gave only tacit support, and had enjoyable exchanges each time. The purpose of the questions is to determine whether, after careful analysis of each of the points presented, the reader is still as confident about the Darwinian explanation for the origin of life.

Note that some of these questions deal with the Creationists view that the earth was made in six literal, 24-hour days.

  1. Which would you say evolved first, RNA or protein?
  2. If RNA molecules came first, how did they develop without preexisting protein?
  3. If protein, how did it develop without preexisting RNA?
  4. If you provided an explanation for the above questions, where is the scientific support (demonstrable proof) for your answer?
  5. As mutations do not build complexity, why are they used as examples of “progressive evolution”?
  6. Where is the evidence that any complex organ (e.g. the human eye or liver) arrived by mutation?
  7. Where is the evidence for the evolution of biochemical/cellular systems?
  8. Why have new species appeared in the fossil record suddenly, without ancestral connections, in contrast to Darwinian explanations for gradual change?
  9. In contrast to the Darwinian “Tree of Life,” why do so many genes tell “contradictory evolutionary stories”? (For example, according to eminent microbiologist Carl Woese: “phylogenetic conflicts can be seen everywhere in the universal tree, from its root to the major branchings within and among the various taxa to the makeup of the primary groupings themselves.”)
  10. If life arose by a series of chance events, why is it that scientists — using the world’s available accumulated knowledge, advanced laboratory equipment, and computers — are unable to duplicate the event?
  11. In view of man’s short life-span (compared to some animals and even trees), why did he develop a brain that could last for “billions of lifetimes”? By way of illustration, would a corporation spend billions of dollars developing and building a powerful, computer-controlled, high speed motor vehicle if it was only ever going to be used just to play the stereo music system?
  12. According to recent findings (Science, August 1, 2013) all humans originated from one pair, i.e. one man and one woman. Why has this scientific evidence been sidelined in preference to the Tree of Life?
  13. In recent decades, paleontologists have found soft tissue on fossilised dinosaur bones. Why have these findings not been used to influence the traditional ages (prehistoric periods) given for these creatures?
  14. Why do many scientists refer to the documented age of prehistoric creatures with such confidence, when the accuracy of the dating methods used to refer to such ancient time periods is untestable?
  15. Why do some scientific textbooks alter the relative sizes (in textbook illustrations) of some skull fossils, giving the appearance of close species relationships?
  16. Why did some unscrupulous scientists feel the need to “doctor” evidence as in the examples of Piltdown Man and Java Man?
  17. Why do some researchers stipulate that the “days,” referred to in the Genesis account of creation, were 24 hours in length?
  18. Where, in the biblical Genesis account, is there any reference to a “24 hour” period?
  19. If the creative “days” were literally 24 hours in length, why does Genesis 2:4 say that the entire creative process, including all 6 “days” of Genesis chapter 1, occurred in “one day”?
  20. What events are covered in the “one day” of Genesis 2:4?
  21. As the first “day” of creation only begins with Genesis 1:3, how long is the period that verses 1 & 2 refer to?
  22. If the earth was supposed to have been “made” within these six literal days, why does Genesis 1:1 say that the earth was made, along with the heavens, “in the beginning,” prior to the start of the six-day period?
  23. Does the word “day” always refer to a period of 24 hours?
  24. How long is a day as used in the expression “night and day”?
  25. How long is a day as used in the expression “in my grandfather’s day” or “the day of the dinosaurs“?
  26. As the term day is clearly used here to express a very long but undetermined period of time, in Genesis chapter 1, how did the ancient writer of Genesis manage to find agreement with up to date scientific theory as to the events of each step and the chronological order in which these events occurred?
  27. With regard to the evolution of the human body, did this occur in one go or did it occur gradually over considerable time?
  28. Did the various body systems (e.g. muscular, nerve network, digestive, lymphatic, pulmonary, circulatory, respiratory, immune, skeletal, excretory, urinary, endocrine, and reproductive) evolve gradually over millions of years?
  29. How did these mutually dependent systems function whilst they or their dependencies were only partly evolved?
  30. Where is the evidence for the successful partially developed body system with its appropriate connections to functional related systems?
  31. Which evolved first, the brain or the heart?
  32. If “heart,” what purpose did it perform without the presence of other systems that require a blood supply?
  33. If “brain,” how did it survive without a blood supply?
  34. As nerve tissue also requires a blood supply, which evolved first, blood vessels or nerve fibers?
  35. If “nerve fibers,” how were they sustained without a blood supply?
  36. If “blood vessels,” how did vital information travel through the body as a whole?
  37. Did major organs such as the liver evolve before the other organs and chambers of the body that have multiple dependencies on such major organs; if so, what purpose or function would they perform at this point?
  38. If organs that have many dependents evolved at a later time, how would their dependents be able to function?
  39. If they managed to function without these dependencies, what use would the organs be that had yet to evolve?
  40. Which do you think evolved first, the skeleton or blood vessels?
  41. If bone came first, how is it that there are neatly formed channels in some bones perfectly suited, even specifically mapped, for blood vessel chanelling?
  42. If blood vessels came first, how would large creatures become ambulant without a firm skeletal structure?
  43. If they somehow managed to achieve ambulance without a skeleton, why and how would bones have ever evolved?
  44. Which evolved first: the heart, or the network of blood vessels?
  45. If blood vessels, then what purpose did they serve?
  46. Did you know that the heart itself contains many blood vessels for its own blood supply? If the heart evolved first, how did it function without blood vessels?
  47. If both the heart and the blood vessels somehow evolved at the same time, how can evolution explain the complete arrival of approx. 100,000 miles of intricately placed blood vessels throughout the body?