On cars and science

I had several ideas for posts to write this evening: I was going to write about the haircut I had this morning. I was also going to write about the fact that, after hounding me for months to donate blood, the Red Cross refused this afternoon to take my blood. I also had some Christmas memories and observations to share. All those will have to wait. I have something else to say.

This began as a conversation on a post by InsanityBytes (which you can read here). IB referenced Genesis 1:3—“God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.” John responded that photons did not exist for the first four hundred million years of the history of the universe. John went on to say that the universe is 13.82 billion years old, the Earth is 4.54 billion years old, suggesting that God and his Word have nothing to do with the existence of the universe, the Earth, or light.

I suggested that we could visit the highway and determine the speed of the passing cars; knowing their speed and their direction, we can use a map to find where each car was one hour ago and where it will be one hour from now. The problem with that assumption is, of course, that cars have drivers who make decisions about the motion of the cars. Knowing how fast it is going this minute does not tell me whether that car was sixty miles away an hour ago or was sitting in a nearby parking lot until a few minutes ago.

Science can measure mass and energy in the present and can make predictions about the past and the future, but only with the assumption that the universe is a closed system. If any supernatural being can enter the universe and change things, then science has a problem. Years of observation have determined that on very few occasions do things happen that could not have been predicted by science. Some call these miracles and take them as proof of an intelligent being who is beyond science; others are determined to say that miracles never happen. They insist that every recorded miracle is faulty information, recorded by unscientific people who were tricked by others or by their own imaginations. This leads to circular reasoning, which first defines miracles as impossible and then uses that definition to discredit every record of a miracle.

So let us study cars scientifically. I have seen cars in a parking lot. They are physical objects, hollow metal boxes with some moving parts that I did not take time to study thoroughly. I did not notice any drivers in the parked cars I observed. Now we know that a moving object tends to remain in motion and an object at rest tends to remain at rest, unless outside forces are at work on that object. Therefore, if no drivers were required to keep those cars in the parking lot at rest, I assume that no drivers are required to keep moving cars on the highway in motion. In fact, given my observation of moving cars on the highway, I find it highly unlikely that any intelligent being is in control of the motion of those cars.

Now John (or someone like him) can present me with literature about cars, literature that demonstrates the existence of drivers, but I am free to laugh away his literature as the deluded imaginings of unscientific writers. (Of course they are unscientific—they believe in drivers!)  John can tell me that he has met drivers and has spoken with them—that he has even ridden with them in cars. I cannot test the experiences of John to know whether he has really met a driver or only thinks that it happened. John can try to explain certain irregularities in the behavior of some of those moving cars that reveal the presence of an intelligent driver, but John may be disregarding physical laws and forces that require the cars to move in the way we both observe. John may even try to point out drivers to me as the cars move past us on the highway, but my radar gun only detects moving cars. It cannot tell me anything about drivers inside those cars, and therefore I am free not to believe in them.

I am not at any great risk if I refuse to believe that cars are operated by drivers. I will be sure to keep my distance from any moving cars, all the more so since I don’t expect them to be operated by intelligent beings. People like John are at a greater risk if they refuse to believe that a God created the universe. The God who made all things has the right to tell his creatures how to behave. He has the right to punish those who break his commandments. Ironically, John judges God as wicked and malevolent because the Creator does not follow John’s rules regarding creation and miracles. I suggested to John that God might call John the same things if John does not follow God’s rules. J.

14 thoughts on “On cars and science

  1. Great response, friend, well thought out and a great analogy. By writing it here, people will actually get to read it, rather than your good comment over at IBs place getting buried in John’s repetition and warnings for us to all stay away from children.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I wonder how John would respond if I told him that the children I have raised–Christian, Bible-believing, conservative–have gone on to be honors students and successful graduates at secular, even state-run, colleges and universities. The young-earth theory hasn’t hurt them one bit. J.

      Liked by 1 person

      • He would likely respond the way he does to most facts. Ignore them and repeat his questions over and over, and put certain words in bold face and upper case to prove they are correct.

        He will never be accepting of the clearly provable fact that believing in Creation does not make one a dysfunctional idiot, unable to exist in normal society.


        Liked by 1 person

  2. The absurdity of evolutionists, the naivety of the ignorant, and the misguided angst of atheists always amazes me. I remember when I 1st began my ‘pulpit ministry’ preaching every Sunday to a small congregation about the Creation vs, Evolution debate that, at the time, had not yet led to the removal of scripture from public education. At that time (the early stages of secular-humanism’s rise to prominence), homosexuality was still considered deviant and gay marriage was not even a homosexual dream. The Evolutionists dated the universe @100k years (opposed to a more scriptural 10k), an estimate that had been expressed then from the 1950’s. I commented on an article that was current at the time, in which the author cited a ‘revolutionary scientific discovery’ that ‘proved’ the original estimates to be off by a couple of 100’s of thousands of years.

    By the turn of the century (Y2K) newer estimates leaped into the millions of years. Such progressive revelations in any legitimate science would be met with tremendous criticism and earnest speculative investigation, but not so with the ever growing dissenters of religion. The older the universe – the better to fit their mold of random expansion: design without a designer; morality without godly morals.

    Finally well organized under rainbows (promised by God?) and chants of ‘equal rights’ those opposed to their movement became instant deplorables who were closed-minded bigots, chasing ancient fantasies and imagination dragons, while the 100k age of the universe itself became mere fodder in their intellectual cannons of equality, tolerance, and justice for all (except we loons who continued to disagree).

    I really saw it coming. I warned of its fast approach. As the line between inherent differences was redefined, matters of choice suddenly were ‘traits’ we a given at birth. Oh, really? Given by who?

    Even as the flaws in their reasoning became glaringly more abundant, the more they professed wisdom, the more foolish their rhetoric. That’ll preach Ro. 1:22.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yes–the apostle Paul, guided by the Holy Spirit, described the current state of western civilization with uncanny accuracy. Of course Greek and Roman philosophers also theorized an eternal universe in which gods come and go, and they also accepted homosexuality and the molesting of children as normal. The more things change, it seems, the more they stay the same. J.


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