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Synthesizing Life in the Laboratory: Why is it not Happening?

Laboratory abiogenesis is one of the ultimate goals of experimental biology. The most formidable barrier to create living matter in the laboratory is not the complexity of the cell, rather the absolute requirement for non-equilibrium steady state for all chemical reactions. Current synthetic biology technologies cannot yet produce cells, which harbor chemical systems in non-equilibrium steady-states.

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Is There Biological Evidence of Life's Recent Creation?

During one of my frequent visits to the office of my high school headmaster, his individual tutelage yielded a life lesson that I’ve never forgotten. His exact words were, “You think you’re right!” Of course I thought I was right, wouldn’t anyone who thought they were wrong change their mind and then immediately think they are right? Now that I’m an adult biologist, I still think that I’m right. Inevitably…

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DNA and Design

Imagine walking down the beach and coming across the words “Romeo loves Juliet” written in the sand. Most of us have experienced something like this and would not be surprised, but most people would be surprised to find the entire text of William Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet written in sand. Why is this? The obvious reason is that sand is the wrong material for large writing projects. Sand grains…

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Where Did Life Come From?

Among those who reject the Biblical record of God’s action in creating everything, including all living things, the process of chemical evolution from atoms to the first cell is usually explained something like this: elements reacted with each other spontaneously forming simple molecules. These simple molecules continued to react forming larger and more complex molecules such as the nucleotide building…

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Traces of Life from Archean Rocks: Evidence and Challenges

The rocks found on the surface of the Earth did not form all at the same time. Geologists schematize this different order of formation using a column, of which the lower layers represent older rocks and top layers represent younger rocks. Archean rocks are the ones at the very bottom of this geologic column, and are therefore interpreted as the oldest rocks. They are often heavily deformed and altered…

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How Do We Know What is True?

To understand how human beings acquire and evaluate knowledge, and how to determine what is true involves consideration of the relationships between data, interpretations, assumptions, and worldviews. All of these contribute to the scholarly search for truth, and none can be safely ignored.

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Curriculum and Faith in Tension

There is a great need for teachers to educate students for evaluation of ideas, problem solving, cultural sensitivity, and interpersonal skills. This educative process will introduce challenging issues and perspectives, some of which may clash with certain students’ personal beliefs. If teachers use appropriate teaching methodologies, these challenges will help their students to understand why there are different perspectives and equip them with the tools to use in evaluating them.

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Teaching About Scientific Origins: Taking Account of Creationism

A review of the book, Teaching About Scientific Origins. Provides science teachers with a strategy for teaching evolutionary science without creating too much resistance from students and parents. Published in Origins, n. 63.

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Son of Panda

A review of the book, The Design of Life: Discovering Signs of Intelligence in Biological Systems. High school biology text uncommitted to materialistic Darwinism. Published in Origins, n. 63.

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A Conversation Starter

A review of the book, Explore Evolution. This is written as a supplemental Classroom textbook exploring the controversies surrounding neo-Darwinism. Published in Origins, n. 63.

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When Faith and Knowledge Clash

How should we, as Adventist educators, relate to such dissonance between Christian belief and secular knowledge?

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The Godfather of Intelligent Design

A review of the book, Darwin's Nemesis: Phillip Johnson and the Intelligent Design Movement. Published in Origins n. 61.

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Annotations from the Literature

A collection of short commentaries on scientific papers published in 2005, covering topics such as debris flows, origin of life, Mesozoic fossil birds, fossil proteins, and dinosaurs. Published in Origins n. 59.

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Inherit the Wind: Myth vs Reality

A review of the book Monkey Business: The True Story of the Scopes Trial. Published in Origins n. 59.

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Reactions

Reaction to the editorial, Chicken Soup, and the article, Recent Developments in Near Eastern Chronology and Radiocarbon Dating, Self-organization and the Origin of Life. Even if biomolecules self-assembled into cellular organization, that would not produce life because life requires non-equilibrium chemical reactions. The editorial by Jim Gibson did not address this point. Correlation of carbon-14 dates with the biblical time scale favors the younger archaeological dates discussed in the article by Michael Hasel.

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Teach the Controversy

A review of the book, Darwinism, Design and Public Education. Published in Origins, n. 57.

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Chicken Soup, Self-Organization and the Origin of Life: A Test

Life is proposed to have originated by random processes in a chemical soup. The validity of this idea can be tested by looking for life ini cans of chicken soup, which contain all the chemicals needed and so ought to provide an ideal environment for life to originate, if the theory is valid. Published in Origins n. 58.

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Intelligent Design: The Biochemical Challenge to Darwinian Evolution?

While Christians may be convinced that design in nature points to a Creator-God, the general scientific community has not been persuaded. Perhaps more scientifically respectable work on intelligent design of the kind done by Behe and Dembski will encourage evolutionary scientists to look beyond purely naturalistic mechanisms to explain the complexity and meaning of life.

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Bits and Particles: Information and Machines Sufficient to Infer an Intelligent Designer

The molecules of life suggest no need for Christians to become sycophants to materialistic philosophy posing as science. On the contrary, science liberated from the artificial constraints of materialism provides an elegant mechanism for study of the creation and logically points to a wonderful Creator.

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Integrating Faith and Learning in the Teaching of Biology

The Intelligent Design movement is crucially important for all Adventist educators, especially for those in science, in the integration of faith and learning in their classrooms.

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