Thursday, April 24, 2008



This past weekend the film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed opened in theaters around the country. The documentary, hosted by Ben Stein, takes a look at the debate – or lack thereof – and the controversy surrounding the theory of intelligent design. Expelled examines how many scientists have been chastised, denied tenured positions, or even fired for suggesting that Darwin's theory of evolution may not be the best explanation for life on earth. The film argues that "big science" is using intimidation and censorship to stifle academic and scientific debate. Instead of encouraging scientists to ask questions, examine the facts, and follow the evidence wherever it may lead, our universities and scientific institutions are using their influence to suppress those who are bold enough to question the accepted evolutionary theology.

Expelled did well at the box office, despite being almost universally panned by mainstream media critics (a rather hostile review by the New York Times actually described the film as a sleazy "conspiracy theory rant"). Expelled took in $3.2 million in its opening weekend. It managed to break into the top 10 at the box office, despite only showing on about 1,000 screens nationwide (wide release films typically show on 2,000+ screens). While $3.2 million certainly isn't spectacular for a mainstream movie, it is quite good for a documentary. In fact, Expelled had the third best opening in history for a documentary, and could end up as one of the top 10 highest-grossing documentaries of all time.

Darwin's Wall

Expelled opens with documentary footage of the Berlin going up and ends with it coming down. The idea is that a similar wall has been built in the scientific community. It is a wall meant to protect the sacred cow of modern science and the cornerstone of secular humanism. Expelled argues that scientists should be able to take an objective look at intelligent design without fear of reprisal. The film includes interviews with scientists on both sides of the debate, including Stephen C. Meyer of the Discovery Institute and well-known atheist Richard Dawkins.

If intelligent design isn't real science, if indeed it is merely religious propaganda, what are scientists like Dawkins so afraid of? The truth is that the more we learn about universe, the more obvious it becomes that we are not the result of random chance. The discovery of DNA, in particular, has radically transformed modern science and changed how many look at the origin of life. DNA is a digital, error-correcting, and self-replicating code; and within its complicated and elegant structure are the blueprints of every living thing on the planet. According to Dr. Jerry Bergman, a professor of science at Northwest College, "At the moment of conception, a fertilized human egg is about the size of a pinhead, yet it contains information equivalent to about six billion chemical letters. This is enough information to fill 1000 books, 500 pages thick with print so small you would need a microscope to read it! If all the chemical letters in the human body were printed in books, it is estimated they would fill the Grand Canyon fifty times!"

Random chance cannot account for the complex design of DNA. It is statistically and mathematically impossible. The chances of winning the state lottery every week of your life from the age of 18 to 99 are better than the odds of a single-celled organism being formed by random chance. Likewise, the probability of spontaneous generation is about the same as the probability that a tornado sweeping through a junkyard could assemble a 747 from the contents therein. It is impossible. The evidence all points to the unavoidable conclusion that we not the product of chance, but the result of intelligent design.

To learn more about this topic click on the links below. For a more in-depth look at the origins of life check out The Creator Series (this series contains four excellent briefings on various topics related to the creation/evolution debate).

Related Links:
• The Creator Series on CD-Rom - Special Offer!
• Study Resources: Creation/Evolution - Koinonia House
• Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed - Official Movie Website
• 'Expelled' Enjoys Top 10 Opening - BP
• 'Expelled' Review - New York Times
• Stein Turns the Tables on Darwinists - LA Daily News


No comments: