Dear Professor Louis:
You have presented the view that from a theological perspective evolution is not objectionable. You explained, for instance, that we ought not to confuse mechanism with meaning. If the creator used evolution as a creation tool, that need not detract from the meaning of the creation. And you thoughtfully defended Leibniz’s arguments that occasional divine intervention demeans God’s craftsmanship and that God doesn’t do miracles to satisfy the wants of nature, but rather those of grace.
But have you considered what theology has to say about scientific realism? Solomon, for example, wrote that “It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, But the glory of kings is to search out a matter.” Is there not a theological mandate that science ought to adhere to the evidence and data?
I ask the question because evolution is so often at odds with the scientific evidence. For instance, science suggests that the evolution of even a single protein is highly unlikely. One study concluded that the number of evolutionary experiments required to evolve a protein is 10^70 while another study concluded that the maximum number of evolutionary experiments possible is only 10^43. So the number of evolutionary experiments required is 27 orders of magnitude greater than the number of evolutionary experiments possible.
By any reasonable measure a 27 order of magnitude shortfall is at least tantamount to “highly unlikely.” In fact, this estimate is conservative for several reasons. First, these studies were performed not by skeptics but by evolutionists.
Second, these studies were not carefully selected to magnify the problem but on the contrary, are optimistic. The conclusion that the number of evolutionary experiments required to evolve a protein is 10^70 was arrived at using only part of a protein and only part of its function was considered. Also, other pre existing proteins were used in the experiment.
And the conclusion that the number of evolutionary experiments possible is 10^43 was computed by making every assumption as optimistic as possible. The evolutionists computed a range of values, and 10^43 was the upper end of their range. It was computed assuming a four billion year time frame and assuming the preexistence of an earth full of bacteria. The time frame is two to three orders of magnitude too large (proteins must have evolved in a matter of millions, not billions, of years). And bacteria need thousands of, yes, proteins. So even to compute the number of evolutionary experiments available to evolve a protein, it was again necessary to assume the pre existence of proteins.
The evolutionists did provide a more conservative estimate of the number of evolutionary experiments possible, reducing the number from 10^43 to 10^21. This increases the evolutionary shortfall from 27 orders of magnitude to 49 orders of magnitude. But even in this more conservative estimate the evolutionists continued to use the four billion year time frame and the pre existence of bacteria (with their many thousands of pre existing proteins).
Therefore according to today’s science the evolution of even a single protein, by the evolutionist’s own reckoning, is unworkable. This is, of course, one particular example in a consistent trend. Science presents substantial problems with the theory of evolution. Is this not a matter we should search out?