Not so long ago I received this very powerful emailer from Greg Hinnant Ministries. He delves into the biology of humans and the incredible way in which we are made, from our intelligence right down to our flesh and skin. It’s most certainly worth the read…
Stunned! That was my reaction to Amsterdam’s Dutch National Museum of art when, as a rather incurious sixteen year old, I wandered through it, noting the brilliant contrasts of light and dark and exquisitely fine detail in every painting. Young, inexperienced, and uninformed as I was, even I knew there must be a master artist somewhere. There was: his name was Rembrandt.
Rapt! That was my reaction when during my days in Appalachian State’s music school I first heard a top-flight professional orchestra and chorus releasing the gloriously woven melodies, chords, and counterpoint of one “Ninth Symphony.” For such a complicated piece to have come into being, notes could not have leapt from nowhere onto the musical score from which the conductor and musicians were performing. There must have been a master composer. There was: his name was Beethoven.
Overawed! That was my reaction when, in my twenties, I first drove through the last turn in the long, winding driveway and suddenly saw before me the stunning specter of the Biltmore Estate with its regal lawn and fountains and mountain backdrop. After exploring the palatial grounds and interior I didn’t know who, but I knew there must have been a master architect who planned George Vanderbilt’s dream chateau. There was: his name was Hunt.
Blown away! That’s been my reaction as, well, no longer in my twenties, I’ve recently taken a long, deep gaze at the exquisite detail of the human body. The amazing layers of intelligent operation and coordination of body parts and systems make me realize, again, all this smart stuff can’t be accidental. But the smart people, secular academics and the intelligentsia alike, who are unquestionably well educated, say I’m all wrong. The human body looks well planned, but it’s not. It’s the masterwork of chance.
If so, let’s push this to its logical conclusion by asking a few simple, reasonable questions.
What if our bodies were not covered with skin? We would absorb water and bacteria like a sponge and, defenceless, die within days. What if our brains were not in our skulls, encased by hair, skin, dense bone, membrane and fluid? We would easily harm or kill ourselves with the slightest bump or fall. What if we had no skeletal system? We would be large worms. What if we didn’t have two of so many key parts (eyes, ears, arms, hands, legs, feet, kidneys, lungs) enabling us to survive the loss of one? We would be much less durable and easily totally disabled.
What if our spine didn’t have numerous vertebrae allowing it to flex in all directions? We’d be as stiff as a stick man, rendering the simplest activities, much less work and athletics, impossible. What if we didn’t have a complex central and peripheral nervous system? We wouldn’t realize it if we placed our hand on a burning stove, or know when we were hungry, or detect symptoms of illness. What if our bodies took in liquid and solid nourishment but were unable to filter and expel waste material and toxins? Though nourished adequately, we’d die within days. What if our skin didn’t renew itself every month? We wouldn’t be as beautiful as (we think) we are! What if our hands didn’t have five durable, multi-flexing, closely situated fingers capable of multiple uses? We couldn’t work, hunt, feed, cleanse, or protect ourselves. What if our vital, sensitive organs (heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, stomach, intestines) were not inside a highly protected central region, surrounded by layers of muscles and ribs? Our heart under our foot? Our lungs on the surface of our backs? Our stomach in our necks? They would be exposed to harm, and we to death, constantly.
What if copulation was painful instead of a very pleasurable experience? The human race would quickly become extinct. What if we had bones and muscles but no tendons? Our muscles wouldn’t be able to move our bones or appendages, making standing, walking, and virtually all movement impossible. What if we had no ligaments? The parts of our bodies bearing the greatest loads (hips, knees, ankles) would quickly fail. What if we had no teeth or taste buds in our mouths? We couldn’t discern safe from unsafe foods, enjoy eating, or prepare our food for digestion by chewing. What if our stomachs weren’t lined with thick mucus? The hydrochloric acid in them would eat though our bodies, quickly killing us. What if we had no immune system or our blood didn’t clot? The slightest sickness, laceration, or contusion would be mortal. What if our primary bodily systems (circulatory, respiratory, glandular, digestive) didn’t interact with perfect synchronization? We couldn’t sustain life. Think I’m silly for posing these questions?
However ludicrous they seem, all these possibilities are logical and valid, and countless others, if random force created us. Thus these musings concerning our amazing anatomy and physiology, like those I experienced in art, music, architecture, can lead to only one honest conclusion. The strength, intelligence, skill, dexterity, beauty, functionality, endurance, and longevity of this monumental, computerized, flesh-and-bone machine we call the body cannot be the product of chance. There must be a masterful Intelligent Designer, a Creator. There is: His name is Jesus: “By him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible” (Col. 1:16; cf. Jn. 1:1-3, 10; Heb. 1:1-2). And what about the things surrounding us?
Why is earth in the small “habitable zone” of our solar system, a mere 5 % of its mass having temperatures warm enough to sustain liquid water and yet cool enough to not boil it? Why does our water cycle perpetually retain the same total amount of water worldwide, despite constant freezing, evaporation, and condensation? Why do our oceans have currents (rivers) of warmer water running through them that help regulate our weather and temperature? Why are our continents teeming with game for food, our fields rich in nutrients for agriculture, our mountains full of precious metals, and our seas stocked with an abundance of edible creatures? Why do migratory birds instinctively sense it’s time to fly south or north? Who put the astonishing amount of information and organization in every living cell? Why do humans alone, of all beings, have the capability and inclination to consider, appreciate, and worship God? My humble queries haven’t even scratched the surface of this immense topic.
Since Charles Darwin’s seminal work The Origin of Species in 1859, the secular Western world has increasingly convinced itself that the cosmos and all life forms on earth came about by random force, undirected mutation, and natural selection. But nowhere do we see evidence of random force creating a higher order of things. Instead we see everywhere human creators using their intelligence, materials, and energies to create well-ordered things. And, conversely, whenever forces act randomly upon them, disintegration, not integration, occurs. Thus to claim random forces create order is a dishonest denial of truth—which is the real problem.
God considers our well-ordered creation sufficient proof of His existence and creatorship and declares it a damnable offense to deny them (Rom. 1:18-22). David affirmed, “The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship” (Ps. 19:1-2, NLT). Darwin’s disciples know well enough everything stated above, but won’t admit it, because to acknowledge the existence of a Creator is to admit moral accountability to Him. And that’s something they’re not willing to do. For now…
What if, instead of mocking or hating we pray for them? Might this facilitate a new creation—the Creator’s Spirit moving on the dark disorder of their unbelieving souls to command light, life, and divine order in them—when, softened by our prayers and humbled by God’s plow, they hear and receive the seed of the gospel? So let’s have mercy and pray. But never, oh never, please never, say, however mocked you may be for refusing to do so, that you believe random force created all this exquisite order within and around us. Confidently confess, it was Redeemer force.