Fossil Humans and Fossil Apes
The iconic “March of Progress” is misleading
Ancient Near Eastern views should be considered part of the history of the idea of evolution. The biblical Creation account, in describing the divine actions through which God actually brought the cosmos into existence, was likely deconstructing the alternative theories or speculations of origins available in the Ancient Near East. Consequently, the biblical narrative can be used as well to deconstruct contemporary cosmogonies and evolution. This article was originally published on Perspective Digest, v.24/3.
Confirmation that fathers may sometimes pass mitochondrial DNA to their children violates the assumptions used to calculate the age of the most recent female common ancestor of all living humans. Published in Origins v. 21, n. 2.
Two important papers were published in May 2017, warranting an update on the subject of Homo naledi.
The aim of this article is to use the example of Homo naledi to illustrate the distinction between data and interpretations, and to discuss some of the questions a biblical creationist might have in relation to this new discovery.
This article was originally published as a chapter in the book “The Genesis Creation Account and Its Reverberations in the Old Testament."
Picture a ground squirrel who spots a predator and gives an alarm call. The call alerts other squirrels who run for cover, but the call attracts the predator to the one giving the alarm. This unfortunate squirrel may give its life to protect its neighbors. How could this altruistic behavior, assisting other individuals at the expense of the calling squirrel, result from evolution? This seems contrary…
Researchers discuss the role and position of Neanderthals in an alleged evolutionary process and debate whether they went extinct before, during or after anatomically modern humans colonized the northern hemisphere, and if the former interbred with the latter. However, many recent studies, ranging from genetics to the analysis of Neanderthal technology and culture suggest that Neanderthals might be understood within a different scientific framework.
Recent discoveries have shown artistic behaviors in Neanderthals including decoration of their bodies with jewelry and probably pigment. Moreover, these are clear indicators that they made use of language and verbal communication.
For a large part of the 20th century, there was much discussion about evolution’s difficulty in explaining altruism. This was an important, unsolved problem.
Recently, the city buses in my neighborhood gained a new set of brightly-colored advertisements along their sides. In bold letters, they proclaimed that humans and chimpanzees are 98% identical: “Come and meet your relatives.”
A review of the book, A Meaningful World: How the Arts and Sciences Reveal the Genius of Nature. Darwinian reductionism dissolves appreciation of the genius behind masterpieces. In the real world, science and the arts each enrich and complement understanding of the other; both, at their best, are part of and point to the same Truth. Published in Origins, n. 61.
The gift of life is conferred on humankind in an intimate face-to-face encounter. God forms a work of art out of moist clay. A bond with this piece of art begins to grow in the gentle process of making. Then comes that incredible moment.
A review of the book, Agents Under Fire: Materialism and the Rationality of Science. Published in Origins, n. 57.
A collection of short commentaries on scientific papers published in 2003, covering topics such as frog biogeography, moas, the hoatzin, magic bullets in creationism, intelligent design, gene duplication, snail variation, Cambrian lagerstatten, extraterrestrial impacts, hotspots, carbonates, mitochondrial Eve, pseudogene function, mutations in bacteria, fossil diversity patterns, feathered dinosaurs, the fossil Microraptor, intermediate fossil Ichthyostega, problems with the evolutionary tree, and mitochondrial DNA differences. Published in Origins n. 58.
A collection of short commentaries on scientific papers published in 1998, 1999, covering topics such as developmental genes in sea urchins, dinosaur lungs, Archaeopteryx bones, Darwin's finches, parallel evolution, evolutionism, variation in bacteria, genetic load, human origins, Neanderthal DNA, molecular evolution, origin of life, biogeography of Madagascar, fossil record, problems in phylogeny of microbes and whales. Published in Origins n. 51.
During the last decade, several provocative accounts of "morally significant" behavior in animals have been documented on film and in the print media for the general public.
Given the current database on fossil hominids, caution is warranted. Indeed, it would be premature to draw any definitive conclusions with regard to the origins of these organisms and their relationship to the Genesis record.