Book review: “An Appeal to Reason” by Jim Gibson

“An Appeal to Reason” is subtitled “Examining the evidence of origins in the evolution verses creation debate”. The author, Jim Gibson, employs a witty and, in some cases, sarcastic style. He intends the book to appeal to the younger generation, who have little knowledge of the facts surrounding the story that is now taught universally in the education system of the origin of life on this planet. Evolution is marketed as a fact—as the true history of life on Earth. The author points to many scientific discoveries that contradict that story. Published by Tate Publishing, Oklahoma, USA (2014) and available from Amazon.com.

The book is wide-ranging in its subject matter, yet does not load the reader with too many or superfluous details, yet provides sufficient explanation to show that the biblical creation model of understanding the history of the universe and life on Earth is a far better explanation than that offered by the evolution story.

Jim Gibson’s approach to the subject is different to the approach I have read in many other creationist publications that deal with similar material. It is fresh, insightful and challenging to anyone willing to open their mind and use commonsense and reason in understanding the evidence—both present day observations and accounts from history as recorded by scientific observers over the past few hundred years. Therefore I recommend it to everyone.

See video promo from Tate Publishing. But note the book is no longer available at Tate Publishing. See update below. Continue reading

Book Review: “Setting Aside All Authority” by Christopher M. Graney

The book “Setting Aside All Authority” comprises 10 chapters, 270 pages. The last half of the book is largely made up of two appendices: (A) the first English translation of Monsignor Francesco Ingoli’s essay to Galileo (disputing the Copernican system on the eve of the Inquisition’s condemnation of it in 1616) and (B) excerpts from the Italian Jesuit astronomer Giovanni Battista Riccioli’s reports on his experiments with falling bodies. The book is published by the University of Notre Dame, 2015.

Cover of the book. The cover image is taken from Riccioli’s New Almagest (1651). Note the heliocentric system (top left) compared to the Tychonic hybrid geocentric system (bottom right).

The main thesis of the book challenges the notion that around the time of Galileo, and the beginning of the Copernican revolution, opponents of the heliocentric worldview, championed by Galileo, were primarily motivated by religion or dictates from the authority of the Roman Catholic Church.

The author, Christopher M. Graney, uses newly translated works by anti-Copernican writers of the time to demonstrate that they predominantly used scientific arguments and not religion in their opposition to the Copernican system. Graney argues that it was largely a science-versus-science debate, rather than church authority-versus-science as often incorrectly portrayed.

In the 1651, the Jesuit Giovanni Battista Riccioli published his book the New Almagest wherein he outlined 77 arguments against the Copernican system (pro-geocentrism) and 49 arguments in favour of it. Most arguments against the Copernican heliocentric system could be answered, at that time, but Riccioli, using the then available telescopic observations of the size of stars, was able to construct a powerful scientific argument that the pro-Copernican astronomers could not answer without an appeal to the greatness of God.

Graney largely uses Riccioli’s New Almagest, which argues in favour not of the Ptolemaic system but of the hybrid Tychonic system, where the Earth is immobile at the centre of the universe, the sun, the moon and the stars circle the earth; but the planets circle the sun. Riccioli built on the work of the Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe, and built a strong scientific case against the heliocentric system, at least through the middle of the seventeenth century, which was several decades after the advent of the telescope.

The main two arguments presented in the book, both scientific, are the size of stars and the effect on falling bodies.

Falling bodies

If the earth were rotating, then a falling body should hit a point on the surface of the earth at a definite distance from a vertical line to the surface, if dropped vertically. The same argument could be made for cannon balls fired in different directions on the earth’s surface. These type of discussions and arguments carried on for a century, and even Isaac Newton got involved. What we now know as the Coriolis force, a ‘fictitious’ force, resulting from the rotation of the planet on the fired or dropped objects could not be measured with the required precision in the 17th century.

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Dark matter caused the demise of the dinosaurs?

Dark matter has been invoked to solve many vexing problems in astrophysics and cosmology.1 Now it seems it has been invoked to solve the evolutionists’ problem of extinction of the dinosaurs.2

lisa-randall-at-ted-cropped

Lisa Randall Credit: Wikipedia Public Domain

American theoretical physicist and cosmologist Dr Lisa Randall has developed a breakthrough five dimensional warped geometry theory. About two years ago she proposed a new hypothesis on dark matter which suggests the mysterious invisible substance that allegedly dominates the universe played a role in killing the dinosaurs.3 She even has written a book on it—Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs. In the book her new theory is summarised as follows.

[A]bout 66 million years ago, gravitational perturbations caused by a thin pancake-shaped disc of dark matter in the Milky Way galaxy dislodged icy comets in the Oort cloud at the very edge of the known solar system, resulting in the fiery meteoroid that eventually crash-landed in the Yucatan, leading to the mass extinction of more than 75 per cent of life on the planet in the process.3

Her radical new theory even posits mass extinctions every 35 million years or so.

“I am fully aware that it is speculative,” she says.4

Dinosaurs sell books and she has written a book that needs to be sold.

I’d call it a fairytale, except that might be insulting to fairies. To believe that it could even be true takes a lot of faith, which apparently describes Randall. She is reported to be unfazed by the panoply of uncertainties that her new theory incorporates.4 Continue reading

The world is not yet even 6000 years old

Two years ago I wrote a post with a Table derived mostly from biblical texts showing that the world was a little over 6000 years old, or in 2014 precisely 6188 years old. Since then I have learned that one of those biblical periods I used was incorrect and as a result the age of the earth and the whole Universe, in fact, as of 2016, is only 5975 years. That is less than 6000 years and gives us only 25 years to the 6000th birthday for the whole creation. That would be worth celebrating! It would be so nice if that is when our Father in heaven has decided to send back His beloved Son in the Day of the Lord, when judgment comes upon the whole world (Revelation 20:11). But watch and pray!

The table of generations

In this new calculation, only the period of time, derived from Exodus 12:40, for the children of Israel entering Egypt to their exodus has been changed, based on new information. Then I derive a new creation date where I get 3959 B.C. for the year of the beginning. Continue reading

Dragons are not mythological creatures

Dragons are mentioned in the Bible many times, especially in the oldest English translations. Like giants, unicorns, satyrs and cockatrices these are not mythological creatures. I believe, the notion that they are mythological stems from two sources. One is the assumption, born from disbelief, that the Bible is not an accurate record of either history nor of science. The second is related to the first, that evolution is a fact, and therefore the only possible candidate for real dragons, dinosaurs, must be ruled out because “as everyone knows the dinosaurs died out 65 million years ago and therefore could not have lived in recent times with mankind.” I have already examined the claim that giants are mythological. Here I will examine the claim that dragons are mythological. (Others will be examined in future articles).

Dragons today

dragon and knight

Figure 1: Dragon-slaying knight wins heart of damsel.

Nowadays atheist skeptics use the mythology of the dragon-slayer in their attempts to discredit belief in the Bible. For example,1

“We tend to think of tales of dragons as mere fairy stories, but they were once integral to the Christian faith, and featured heavily in factual accounts of the lives of saints, including the prime authority on them, The Golden Legend.

“In medieval times people gave credence to the dozens of saints who owed their position to the slaying of dragons. These huge damsel-eating, fire-breathing, scaly, flying creatures seem a little improbable now, even to the most devout Christians. But these stories were not originally presented as figurative. They were presented as factual, and were to be interpreted literally.”

I am convinced the Roman Catholic Church, as it rose to political power during the 4th and 5th centuries, developed bogus methods to delude the populace into their counterfeit religion.  So it is no wonder that such practices continued for the following thousand of years or more. That is an indictment not on the veracity of the Bible but on the deceptiveness of the corrupt heart of man. Continue reading

Giants are not mythological creatures

I have been told that the Bible mentions several mythological creatures. These include giants, unicorns, satyrs, cockatrices and dragons. But are they mythological? Or is the assumption that they are only due to a prejudice born from a disbelief that the Bible is an accurate record of not only history but also of science? Let’s examine one of the claims that giants are a myth. (Others will be examined in future articles).

Giants today

jackbean

Figure 1: Children’s story of Jack and the beanstalk with the giant descending the beanstalk.

When people hear the word giant they are immediately drawn to the likes of “Jack and the beanstalk” (see Fig. 1) and other such fairy stories. But real life giants do exist today.

macaskill

Figure 2: Angus MacAskill was born in 1825 on the Isle of Berneray in the Sound of Harris, Scotland. His height was 7 foot 10 inches (238.8 cm).

There are records of true giants in modern times. In 1981 the Guinness Book of World Records recognized Angus MacAskill as the largest true giant to have ever lived, the strongest man who ever lived and the man with the largest chest measurements of any non-obese man.

In adulthood, MacAskill stood 239 cm (7 ft 10 in) tall and weighed an astonishing 263 kg (580 lbs). His shoulders measured 112 cm (44 in) wide, the palm of his hand was nearly 30 cm (1 ft) wide and his shoes measured 48 cm (19 in) in length.1

MacAskill was able to lift a 1.27 tonne (2800 lb) ship’s anchor to chest height. Was known to carry barrels weighing over 136 kg (300 lbs) under each arm, was able to singlehandedly set a 12-metre (40-foot) mast into a schooner deck and was also known to lift a full-grown horse over a 1.2-metre (4-foot) fence.1 Continue reading

Three books worth taking the time to read

Over the past two months I have read a few excellent books, which I recommend to you. Of the three, my top choice read is Jerry 10-2-601_8Bergman’s book “Hitler and  the Nazi Darwinian Worldview” (Joshua Press)

How the Nazi eugenic crusade for a superior race caused the greatest Holocaust in world history.

This book takes a fresh look at Germany’s most influential Nazi leaders, examining their backgrounds, education and convictions. It provides compelling evidence that the rising influence of Darwinism, eugenics and race theory in early twentieth-century society set the foundation for the Nazi pursuit of engineering a German “master race”—and exterminating European Jews, Gypsies, Blacks, most Slavs and the Christian religion in the ensuing madness of the Holocaust of World War II.

The effect of social Darwinism, eugenics and anti-Semitism, and their relative acceptance in the scientific and medical communities of Germany and many other countries worldwide, opened the door to mass murder, medical experimentation and military conquest. This title examines the roots of Nazi ideology and unmasks the Darwinian “survival of the fittest” theory behind it.

A review is found here

For a long time there has been speculation about Adolf Hitler’s alleged Jewish ancestry. On page 53 Bergman writes in regards to this:

Genetic research indicates the possibility that Hitler had Jewish background, which makes his inferiority concerns somewhat ironic. … Geneticists identified groups of genes called haplogroups that define populations. Hitler’s dominant haplogroup, E1b1b, is relatively rare in Western Europe, but between 50 to 80 per cent of North Africans share Hitler’s dominant group, which is especially prevalent among in (sic) the Berber tribes of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Somalia. Hitler’s second most dominant haplogroup is the most common in Ashkenazi Jews.  “The findings are fascinating if you look at them in terms of the Nazi worldview, which ascribed such an extreme priority to notions of blood and race. This pure type of ‘superman’ and the [Nazi] breeding programs to perfect ‘purity’ were sheer fabrications.” (The author cites Haaretz Service, “DNA test reveal Hitler’s Jewish and African roots,” Jewish World (August 4, 2010): 1.) (emphasis added)

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