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Evolution vs Creationism

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Voting Style: Open with Elo Restrictions Point System: Select Winner
Started: 5/26/2015 Category: Science
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,701 times Debate No: 75810
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (22)
Votes (2)




Full resolution: Evolution is a more plausible explanation for the origin of species than Creationism.

First round is acceptance.


I accept!

Since Pro didn't provide any defintions, I will.

[1] Evolution- the process by which different kinds of living organisms are thought to have developed and diversified from earlier forms during the history of the earth.

[2] Creationism- the belief that the universe and living organisms originate from specific acts of divine creation, as in the biblical account, rather than by natural processes such as evolution.

I hope you agree upon theese definitions.

Good luck! ;)

Debate Round No. 1


== Evolution ==

It's undeniable that evolution is true, so it's perplexing that people deny that it explains the origin of species. Evolution is simply the combination of two mechanisms: genetic mutations + selection. We know both exist.

(1) Genetic mutations

Genetic mutations occur when mistakes are made in transcribing DNA. [1] Mutations can occur in both hereditary cells (eggs and sperm) and in somatic cells. [1] We know mutations occur because mutations are what cause cancer. [2]

(2) Selection

Selection is the process whereby certain mutations are favored and thereby become more prevalent in a population. There are two types of mutations that are selected for in nature: survival characteristics and sexual advantages.

(A) Survival characteristics are ones that help an individual survive, maximizing the chances that the individual survives to reproductive age and reproduces, passing on its genes. An example is the polar bear's white fur. White fur blends in more with the surrounding snow, making the polar bear less conspicuous to its prey. Bears with white fur would have been more able to hunt in the snow than bears with darker fur and would have been less likely to starve to death.

(B) Sexual characteristics are ones that females of the species prefer, so they are selected for. The male peacock's colorful plumage is the classic example. [3] Female peafowl prefer males with more colorful tails. The female of the species is more of a dull brown color, allowing her to blend in with the environment better and making it harder for predators to spot her. But because females so prefer colorful males, the advantages of being colorful for the male outweigh the increased risk of predation. People often forget that to have an evolutionary advantage, one need only survive to reproductive age. You can die right after passing on your genes and still "win" from an evolutionary perspective.

There is also a third type of selection called artificial selection, which results from human intervention. Cows were created when humans domesticated aurochs and bred them for certain traits (e.g. producing lots of milk, which is why they have such big udders). [4] The original aurochs are now extinct [4], but we can still see domestication happen before our eyes with, for example, the breeding of domesticated foxes. Simply selecting for the trait of "tameness" also happened to cause the foxes to look and behave more like dogs over time, suggesting that certain traits are linked to "tameness" (e.g. tail wagging to show happiness). [5]

Combining the two

So we know mutations exist and we know selection occurs in nature. The combination of the two explains the origin of species. The first species was a single celled organism that managed to internalize certain proteins and encase them in a membrane (similar to modern bacteria). Eventually, mutations resulted in simple multicellular organisms. Over time, these simple multicellular organisms evolved into more complex organisms. This added complexity conferred enormous survival and reproductive advantages, resulting in something called the "Cambrian explosion," which was an enormous and rapid increase in the number of diverse species. [6] These early species were invertebrates, but over time evolved a backbone, which allowed even more species diversification to occur. Enormous dinosaurs evolved, then died off when a massive asteroid hit the Earth in Mexico, setting off earthquakes, tsunamis, acid rain, and kicking up dust that blotted out the sun. [7] As cold blooded creatures that cannot regulate their internal body temperatures, dinosaurs had a hard time living in such conditions and because they are so large and needed lots of food, they couldn't survive when their food sources were severely impacted. The death of the dinosaurs paved the way for the evolution of modern mammals and eventually early human-like species (hominids). Early hominids evolved from ancient (now extinct) apes because they were better adapted to the drier climates outside the equatorial belt. Hominids evolved to walk upright to give them a better view over the high grass and evolved greater intelligence to allow them to hunt new species of prey (e.g. antelopes) that apes were unable to catch. We have found many different species of hominid fossils: Homo habilis, Homo rudolfensis, Homo ergaster, Homo erectus. We know these are not modern humans because of their shorter stature, larger brow ridges, and smaller brains. Some were even still covered in fur. We have also found fossils from Neanderthals, which actually co-existed with humans for about 75,000 years. [6]

It's pretty basic and undeniable that mutations occur and that selection for certain mutations also occurs. Over a long enough period of time, if a species acquires enough mutations, it will be so distinct that it will no longer be able to interbreed with its ancestors. Its DNA will just be too different. If the two species tried to interbreed, the mixing of genes that are too different will result in such a messed up fetus that it will not be able to survive until birth. In mammals, if the offspring is completely nonviable, it will result in a miscarriage. Even in humans, there are enough genetic mutations that 20 percent of pregnancies are nonviable and result in miscarriages. Two species that are far more different from each other than two humans will have a much higher rate of nonviability. Even if two species had a nonviablity rate of 80 percent for their offspring, they would not be able to effectively interbreed anymore. It wouldn't even require 100 percent nonviability before the species diverged.

Ultimately, denying evolution as the origin of species is implausible if we know that mutations occur and that selection occurs as well. We've seen evolution happen on a human timescale with domestication, e.g. of cows. There's no reason to think it didn't happen over a longer time scale as well.

== Creationism is implausible ==

(1) The Bible is not inerrant

Creationism relies on a key assumption: that every word of the Bible is absolute fact. There are a number of things that prove the Bible is not inerrant and that it contains falsities. If I prove a falsity in the Bible, I prove the entire basis for Creationism is a faulty assumption.

(a) the Earth is not 6000 years old

The Bible traces a genealogy from Genesis to 1 Kings that estimates the age of the Earth at about 6000 years. However, using various radioactive dating methods to test sedimentary Earth rocks and meteorites, scientists have estimated the age of our solar system at 4.5 billion years. [8] In addition, the Universe is 13.7 billion years old -- which is established by measuring how fast other galaxies are moving away from us and is confirmed by the redshifting of light from the Big Bang. [9] Even humans have existed more than 6000 years: the oldest human fossil has been dated as being 195,000 years old. [10]

(b) Mythical creatures

The people who wrote the Bible thought that mythical creatures existed. They said that there was a fire-breathing leviathan in the ocean and unicorns that came out of Egypt. [11] These creatures do not and have never existed. The more plausible explanation is that the Bible contains "oral tradition" myths passed down through generations, including the Creation story. The Leviathan comes from Sumerian pre-bible mythology about the god Ninurta overcoming a Leviathan.

(c) Basic physics

The people who wrote the Bible also lacked a basic understanding of physics, which is why they wrote that the Earth was flat (Job 38:13; Isaiah 11:12; Rev. 7:1), stationary (Eccles. 1:5; Psalms 93:1, 96:10, 104:5; Joshua 10:12; 1 Chron. 16:30) and rested on pillars (1 Sam. 2:8; Job 9:6, 38:4).

(2) Creationism is illogical

There are so many basic logical questions Creationism cannot answer (but my opponent must to win this debate):

How did God communicate the Creation story to humans?

Why did the Bible not mention giant dinosaurs that used to eat humans (if we were created at the same time)?

Why did the Bible not mention all these other weird human-like species that used to co-exist with us (if we were all created together)?

Why haven't modern animal fossils been found in ancient rock layers where they don't belong, e.g. a rabbit in the pre-Cambrian rock layer (if we were all created at the same time)?

Without logical and *good* answers to these questions, Creationism is not plausible.



Rebuttal #1

== Creationism is implausible ==

My opponent claims that "There are a number of things that prove the Bible is not inerrant and that it contains falsities". Yet, he fails to show any evidence to back up his claims. This is more of a personal opinion, you say this because you personally agree with evolution over creationism. Let's take evolution for example. There are my people who disapprove and don't believe in Evolution because it's just another thought of how we, our world and mammals have evolved.

So, since you claimed the bible is false, and everything in it, there are many things that prove Evolution to be wrong. Here is a detailed example about eggs and sperms.

[1] Human Egg and Sperm Proves Evolution is Wrong

The evolutionist ignores the problem surrounding the human female egg and the male sperm in the evolutionary theory. The female egg contains the X-chromosome and the male sperm contains either an X-chromosome for the reproduction of a male or a Y-chromosome for the reproduction of a female. The female eggs all develop within the ovaries while she is a baby (fetus) within her mother's womb. Evolutionists claim environmental factors cause small changes in the offspring in the evolutionary chain. However, the environmental experience of the female cannot change the chromosomes within her eggs and cannot have any effect upon her offspring. Her body cannot go into the eggs contained within her ovaries at her birth to make an intelligent change. Females cannot be a part of the evolutionary theory for these reasons.

Rebuttal #2

The Bible is not inerrant

Creationism relies on a key assumption: that every word of the Bible is absolute fact. There are a number of things that prove the Bible is not inerrant and that it contains falsities. If I prove a falsity in the Bible, I prove the entire basis for Creationism is a faulty assumption.

There has been many prophecies that prove the bible to be correct. We can look around today, and see that all of these things that have been prophesized are true.

Roundness of the earth (Isaiah 40:22)
Almost infinite extent of the sidereal universe (Isaiah 55:9)
Law of conservation of mass and energy (II Peter 3:7)
Hydrologic cycle (Ecclesiastes 1:7)
Vast number of stars (Jeremiah 33:22)

Now, we know from teachings of History and Evolution that, Pythagoras was the first to predict that the earth was round. Pythagoras was born in 571 B.C and died at the age of 75. The book if Isaiah, which prophesized the roundness of the earth was written in 150 100 BCE. [3] "The oldest surviving manuscripts of Isaiah are two scrolls found among the Dead Sea Scrolls; dating from about 150 to 100 BCE, they are substantially identical with the Masoretic version which forms the basis of most modern English-language versions of the book.

(a) the Earth is not 6000 years old

Scientist seem to believe that the earth is some billions of years old, proved by their dating method. But, another method they use "Radio-active" dating methods. But, scientist also use " Carbon-14 dating methods. Radiocarbon in Diamonds

[4] Far from proving evolution, carbon-14 dating actually provides some of the strongest evidence for creation and a young earth. Radiocarbon (carbon-14) cannot remain naturally in substances for millions of years because it decays relatively rapidly. For this reason, it can only be used to obtain “ages” in the range of tens of thousands of years.

As shown, dating methods confuse with how old the earth actually is.

Radioactive dating isn't reliable either.

[5] 'Radioactive isotopes are unstable and will decay into more stable isotopes of other elements. One common radiometric dating method is the Uranium-Lead method. This involves uranium isotopes with an atomic mass of 238. This is the most common form of uranium. It decays by a 14-step process into lead-206, which is stable. Each step involves the elimination of either an alpha or a beta particle. Therefore the process is:

Each individual atom has a chance of decaying by this process. If you were able to examine just one atom, you would not know whether or not it would decay. The chance of it decaying is not definite, by human standards, and is similar to the chance of rolling a particular number on a dice. Although we cannot determine what will happen to an individual atom, we can determine what will happen to a few million atoms....What happens statistically is that half of the available atoms will have decayed in a given period, specific to each radioactive species, called the half-life. For example, if element Aa had a half-life of 1 day and we had 1,000 lbs. of it on Monday, then we would have 500 lbs. on Tuesday, 250 lbs. (half of 500) on Wednesday and 125 lbs. on Thursday.....The radioactive decay process above can be seen to produce 8 alpha-particles for each one atom of U-238. Each Ã"±-particle could gain new electrons and become an atom of helium. The rate of diffusion of helium from a zircon crustal can be measured. It turns out that this rate of diffusion of helium is compatible with the crystals being about 5,000 years old, not 1.5 billion years old.

Obviously, we can't depend on Radioactive dating to determine how old our Earth actually is. We have Carbon, used by scientist that shows us we have a young Earth, then we have Radioactive dating which shows us we have an old Earth. Seems like science has a major conflict.

(b) Mythical creatures

Many creatures described in the bible were very unusual and bizarre. [5] There are certainly many strange creatures mentioned in the Bible. Some descriptions are symbolic and are simply meant to represent certain nations, people, or ideas in prophetic visions; these creatures were never intended to be taken literally. Other passages are indeed describing a real beast, although the names provided by translators were sometimes taken from mythology. The King James Version, translated in 1611, contains several mentions of mythological creatures, including the unicorn, the dragon, and the fearsome cockatrice.

Now, this doesn't mean that all of these animals talked about in the bible were fake.



Hebrew word re'em, signifies a horned animal similar to the aurochs, a now-extinct ancestor of today’s domestic cattle. For some unknown reason, the translators of the KJV chose to substitute “unicorn” for the name of this horned animal each time it occurred: e.g., Deuteronomy 33:17; Psalm 22:21; and Isaiah 34:7. The Bible, in its original languages, never actually mentions unicorns.

The cockatrice is a legendary monster, half-rooster and half-snake, with the ability to turn people to stone at a glance. It may not be so well known as other mythological beings today, but, at the time the KJV translation was made, the cockatrice was a pervasive myth in Britain. The word cockatrice was used to translate the Hebrew tsepha`, which properly means “poisonous serpent or viper,” in four of its five occurrences: Isaiah 11:8; 14:29; 59:5; and Jeremiah 8:17. John Wycliffe used cockatrice in his 1382 Bible translation, and the KJV translators retained the term.

How can we believe this is not, of the bible?

(c) Basic physics

Yet, as mentioned in the begging of my argument, the prediction of the roundness of earth was written in the book if Isaiah, chapter 40, verse 22, which is accurate today.

(Sadly, I'm running out of characters, it will not give me enough characters to write my argument. So I shall write my argument in the next round since Pro didnt state any rules!)








Debate Round No. 2


== Rebuttal ==

R1) Claim: sperm and eggs disprove evolution

Fact: there are a few key problems with this argument.

(1) Even if the argument were true that mutations cannot occur in eggs, mutations in sperm cells caused by environmental factors (like gamma radiation) would be sufficient to explain evolution. For evolution to happen, an individual only needs to inherit a mutated gene from one parent. If the trait is dominant, it will be expressed in the individual. If the trait is recessive, the individual"s offspring will have a survival advantage over time.

(2) The argument wrongly assumes that environmental factors are the only ones that can cause mutations. There are actually two ways that genes can mutate: (a) environmental factors (e.g. radiation, carcinogens) and (b) transcription errors. My source #1 from the previous round says that the vast majority of mutations are from transcription errors, not environmental causes. And transcription errors can and will occur even in the oocytes that are formed in a human female prior to birth. The DNA transcriptase simply makes a mistake when creating the oocytes.

(3) The argument is wrong as a matter of fact. Prior to being born, a woman has all of the primary oocytes in her ovaries that she will ever have. [1] However, during estrus each month, the primary oocytes undergo two more divisions before they form a mature ovum. [1] During these two divisions, additional transcription errors can occur. [1]

(4) Lastly, the argument misunderstands how environmental mutations work. This type of mutation causes changes in *already formed* cells" DNA, without the need for cell division. For example, scientists have used radiation on already formed seeds (the analog to an already formed human ovum) to induce mutations for plant breeding (called "radiation breeding"). It doesn't matter that the seeds have already undergone cell division (meiosis) at this stage and are fully formed. Radiation can still induce mutations.

R2) Claim 2: Biblical "prophecies" prove that the Bible is inerrant

(1) First of all, we need to remember what Con needs to prove here, i.e. that *every word* in the Bible is true. I never claimed that the *entire* Bible is false. My argument was that if the Bible contains falsities, it is not the inerrant word of God, so there is no plausible reason to believe the Creation story over evolution. Some things in the Bible may be true, and Con tries to point to some of them. That doesn"t prove that every word in the Bible is true. Con fails the BOP on that. So there"s no reason to believe that the Creation story is one of the true parts.

(2) Nothing Con said is really a prophecy. The Bible is an enormous work that makes a variety of claims. If you claim enough things, you're bound to be right about some of them (even a broken clock is right twice a day). For example, if you claim both that the Earth is flat (as in the three passages I cited in the previous round) and that the Earth is a sphere (as Con claims of Isaiah 40:22), *one* of those has to be right. That"s not really impressive enough to prove the Bible had knowledge that was ahead of its time.

(3) Now, let's parse these passages. Isaiah 40:22 says the Earth is a "circle," not a sphere. A circle is a two dimensional object, meaning it can still be flat. Isaiah 55:9 says, "the heavens are higher than the earth." That doesn't come close to predicting an infinitely expanding universe. 2 Peter 3:7 says, "the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment." That hardly predicts conservation of energy. That passage is actually saying that on judgment day, the known world will be burned (i.e. a fiery version of the rapture). Jeremiah 33:22's statement about "countless" stars is not impressive given that the vast number of stars is observable with the naked eye.

R3) Claim: Radioactive dating is inaccurate

I'm not sure what Con's argument is here. Carbon dating is used to accurately date objects that are less than 50,000 years old. [2] Uranium-lead dating is used to date older objects because uranium has a slower rate of decay, as Con's own source points out. Con's source also seems to claim that radioactive dating is inaccurate because the decay rate of a single molecule is not known, but the same source concedes that the half life of an entire sample of uranium or carbon is known. So we do known how long it will take half of the radioactive isotopes in a given sample to decay. That's the law of averages.

The accuracy of carbon dating is confirmed by dendrochronology, which uses the size and shape of trees rings to date the age of a tree. Tree rings from a particular year have a particular size and shape based on environmental factors, like rainfall patterns that year. [3] Rings from different trees can be matched together and used to date forests going back more than 8,000 years (which itself disproves that the Earth is 6,000 years old). [3] In addition, using carbon dating on the trees and getting the same result as through dendrochronology proves that carbon dating is accurate. [4]

Lastly, Con described a single experiment done by a creationist on zircon crystals. Basically, scientists had already dated the zircon crystals using uranium-lead dating as being 1.5 million years old. [4] A creationist calculated the age of the crystals based on the amount of helium they had in them as being only 6,000 years old. [4] However, there's a reason scientists don't use helium as a dating method. The diffusion rate of helium out of a crystal varies with temperature and pressure [4], so the diffusion rate assumed in the creationist's calculations was completely wrong. [4] In addition, Creationists all point to this one zircon crystal experiment to disprove radioactive dating. But if radioactive dating were wrong, there should be more than one simple calculation proving that everything we know about chemistry, radioactive decay, and half lives is wrong. It's just *one* experiment, whereas thousands of experiments have shown that uranium-lead dating can date objects between 1 million and 4.5 billion years old with an accuracy of +/- .1%. [5] We generally demand more proof than a single experiment before we jettison an entire scientific field.

R4) Mythical creatures are just allegories

Con says, "Some descriptions are symbolic and . . . were never intended to be taken literally."

(1) The same thing could be said about the Creation story. Perhaps it is also just an allegory that is not meant to be taken literally. If some parts of the Bible are mythical works of fiction (e.g. Leviathans), then there's no reason to believe that the Creation story is not also just a myth passed down through oral tradition. Con's concession here that some parts of the bible are symbolic myths is an enormous concession for this debate.

(2) At the very least, the description of the Leviathan was *not* a mistranslation and *was* meant to be taken literally. Job 41 describes the Leviathan in painstaking detail over the course of 34 sentences as a real creature that is too strong to be caught by a fishing hook, has a double coat of armor, and rows of fearsome teeth. Job 41:12 suggests that the passage is written as a firsthand account from someone who has witnessed a Leviathan.

Con's concessions

Con makes a number of key concessions here.

(1) Con concedes that the Bible was wrong to claim in 6 passages that the Earth is stationary. It actually orbits the Sun. So the Bible is not inerrant. That's cold conceded. Con also concedes that redshifting of light proves that the universe is more than 6,000 years old. So another cold conceded argument disproving the Bible's inerrancy.

(2) Con concedes that Creationism is implausible because we don't know where the story came from or how God "told" it to us. It's more plausible that ancient peoples just wrote down an oral myth story.

(3) Con concedes that a fossil has never been found in a layer of rock in which it did not belong based on evolution's predictions, which proves evolution true and Creationism false, because Creationism would predict that all fossils would be evenly disbursed (since everything was created at virtually the same time).

[5] Parrish, Randall R.; Noble, Stephen R., 2003. Zircon U-Th-Pb Geochronology by Isotope Dilution


So, since I have already rebutted in the previous round, I will now present my argument.

Why Creationism Beats Evolution

There are many big holes in the theory of Evolution, that the Bible can even answer.

For instance:

A) Life from non-life: [1]

These are just a few questions that prove Evolution has a major gap in their teachings. In parenthesis are the answers from the bible.

  • How did life develop from non-life? (You can read the answers to this in the Book of Genesis, when god created all living things, such as creatures and Adam and Eve.)
  • Where did the human emotions, such as love, hate and jealousy, come from? [1] ( You can read in Genesis that God gave Adam and Eve the right to rule over the earth and their own lives. We are created in God's image) Also in 2 Timothy Chpt1 Vs.7 "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity [of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear], but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control”.
  • What are the odds that the evolutionary process, proceeding by random changes, would produce human beings, plus millions of species of animals, birds, fish and insects, all with symmetrical features, i.e., one side being a mirror image of the other? We take symmetry in all these creatures for granted, but is that a reasonable outcome for a random process?

Scientist still do NOT have any answers for the following questions, yet the bible can. As you can see, there are many answers here in the bible that evolutionist can't explain. The bible is the only book that can gives us these answers. This book was written way before scientist even began to make claims about how we, and the earth have evolved.

B) Fossil Records Prove Evolution Wrong!

[1] "One of the most powerful pieces of evidence against evolution is the fossil record. If evolution occurred by slow, minute changes in living creatures, there would be thousands of times more transitional forms of these creatures in the fossil beds than complete forms"

Yet, all fossils formed are in complete form, which only leads to one conclusion...Evolution never occurred!

"Though evolutionists have stated that there are many transitional forms, this is simply not true. What evolutionists claim to be transitional forms all have fully functional parts. A true transitional form would have non-functioning parts or appendages, such as the nub of a leg or wing."

Again, there has not been any fossils re-discovered with transitional forms. Yet, the Bible can answer for Evolution...again "The Bible states in Genesis I that all creatures reproduce “after their kind” (no change to another kind, i.e., no transitional forms). So the complete absence of transitional forms in the fossil record supports creationism. Is this scientific evidence for creationism, or isn’t it?" A coincidence? I think not.

C. Putting The Book of Genesis to the Test!

For many years, people have disregard the thought of Genesis and how the earth was exactly made. But now, even NASA can even see that the teachings of how the earth was created is accurate! [2] In recent years however, some have challenged the account and say there is no scientific evidence to support Genesis. It appears now that discoveries made by NASA's scientist are confirming that the Genesis account is scientifically accurate" But the NASA "Spitzer Telescopes" have proved that the earth, in fact is the way it was prophesized about in the book of Genesis. "data from these two telescopes is revealing that planets like the Earth are formed in the exact same fashion as described at Genesis 1:2, 3. According to NASA, planets form inside a proto-planetary disc of dust and debris, starting out in a formless and chaotic state in total darkness, as describe in Genesis verse 2. "Now the earth proved to be formless and waste, and there was darkness upon the surface of the watery deep.... NASA's scientists have discovered that as the planets mature inside their dusty cocoon they suck up all the dust between them and the sun so that the planets slowly emerge from darkness into the light as described in Genesis verse 3. "Let light come to be...... After doing a two year study of the data put together by NASA scientist from these two telescopes, Hutchins says he was astonished to learn how accurately this scientific data lined up with the simple description of planet formation recorded in Genesis."

As you can read, even NASA scientist have agreed that the book of Genesis is correct. It is the closest thing that has ever been prophesized about the earth. What is the excuse for this? That it's just a coincidence that our Earth is so dramatically correct to the book of Genesis which was written more then likely between 1440 and 1400. There is no coincidence or excuse for this.

Finally...I will give you one more reason as to why Evolution is wrong..

D. Species Without a Link Proves Evolution is Wrong

Many Anthropologist claim that there are many missing links. Yet, scientist are lacking scientific proof that we actually came from certain species such as Apes. [3]There are hundreds of species of extinct monkeys and apes. Petrified skulls and bones exist from these creatures..... Evolutionists line up the most promising choices to present a gradual progression from monkey to modern man. They simply fill in the big gaps with make-believe creatures to fit the picture."

So...we have pictures like this that supposedly show our time line:

But yet, there are many missing links. They make up species, put them in a picture and tell us this is how we evolved. Yet, there are humungous puzzle pieces missing, scientist choose to ignore those pieces, and put together other pieces that are just easier.

As you can see, there are so many missing puzzle pieces from Evolution theory, and yet the bible, has so many of theese awnsers, this means Creationism has to be true.





Debate Round No. 3


== Rebuttal ==

R1) Life from non-life

Con claims evolution cannot explain life coming from non-life (abiogensis). However, scientists have simulated the conditions of the early Earth and seen RNA nucleotides form in these conditions. [1] If RNA could form naturally, it would explain life from non-life. The RNA could encode all of the information necessary to create a living single-celled bacteria. Natural selection would have operated on the RNA molecules so that RNA that coded for a living being would have been more likely to survive and be replicated than RNA that didn't code for anything useful. That was Richard Dawkins' main premise in "The Selfish Gene": that natural selection occurs at the level of the individual gene, which wanted to survive and replicate. We wrongly think of natural selection as operating at the species level.

We know for a fact that RNA arose in the early Earth and that it could survive in non-living things because thats precisely what a virus is: a non-living entity encasing RNA in a protein. It's not a very big leap from a non-living virus to a living bacterium.

R2) Human emotions

Con claims that human emotions cannot be explained by evolution. However, this is a pretty easy one to explain. Emotions serve useful functions for survival and replication. Fear is a basic part of the fight-or-flight response that would have allowed us to escape predators. [2] Love and jealousy were ways to motivate us to find a partner and ensure that we weren't being cuckolded into raising a child that wasn't genetically related to us. [3] Pride and embarrassment are relevant to building and safeguarding our social standing, which is important for any animal that lives in social groups. [2]

R3) Symmetry

Con claims that symmetry could not arise by evolution. However, three responses.

(1) There's a fallacy with working backwards from the improbable when it has already happened. Stephen Hawking noted this in "A Brief History of Time." An Earth capable of sustaining life may seem highly improbable, but there are bound to be some such planets out of the hundred billion galaxies in the universe. There's no point asking how we ended up with an Earth the perfect distance from the Sun, when we already know it happened. Highly improbable events do happen (e.g. someone has to win the lottery). The evolution of symmetry might not have been the only possibility, but it happened. There's no point asking "why."

(2) Symmetry actually makes sense from the standpoint of natural selection. Animals with two legs run faster than those with one leg. Animals with two arms can lift heavy things, whereas animals with one arm cannot. Animals with two eyes have depth perception, whereas animals with only one eye do not.

(3) We're not actually perfectly symmetrical. No one has perfect facial symmetry, for example. And some animals are not symmetrical at all. Pleuronectiformes, for example, have two eyes on the same side of their face.

R4) The fossil record

(1) First, it's important to understand that fossilization is an extremely rare event. When organisms die, they decompose quickly. Only organisms that die in very specific conditions, such as being buried in tar, can fossilize. [4] For this reason, the fossil record only gives us a small snapshot of far less than 1 percent of the species that ever existed. [4] In addition, only hard-matter fossilizes, so fossils of everything except vertebrates are extremely rare. [4] So we don't have anything *near* a complete snapshot of every species that ever existed.

(2) We actually do have fossils from transition forms. The skeletal structure of Australopithecus afarensis demonstrates that it was only partially bipedal (i.e. walked upright but also walked using its hands), so it is part-way in between humans and apes. Pakicetids are a transitional form part-way in between modern horses and whales: they had hooves but had special membranes in their ears making them capable of directional hearing under water. It's important to note that modern cetaceans evolved after mammals *returned* to the water, so pakticetids were a transitional form between hoofed animals and cetaceans. Runcaria are a transitional form between non-seed-plants and seed-plants. Their "seeds" lacked a seed coating and they had no mechanism yet to guide the pollen to the seed.

R5) Genesis 1:2 is confirmed by NASA

Con makes this claim. However, remember my argument that if you make enough vague claims (as the Bible does), it's easy to later find confirmation from science. Con never responds to the fact that three biblical passages say the Earth is flat, six passages say the Earth is stationary (as opposed to orbiting the Sun), and three passages say the Earth is held up by pillars (as opposed to being held in its orbit by gravity). The Bible hardly predicts modern physics.

In addition, if you examine Genesis 1:2 in more depth, it is clearly wrong. Genesis 1:2 says, "The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters." Genesis 1:2 says that the water of the Earth was already formed, but it was "dark," meaning the Sun had not yet formed. However, modern physics establishes that the Sun formed long before the Earth. [5] Genesis 1:2 also claims that the Earth and Sun were formed in 24 hours, which is clearly wrong based on modern physics. [5]

R6) Missing links: revisited

Con throws up a rather crude drawing showing a modern gibbon evolving into a human. First, here's a more accurate picture of all the intermediate hominid fossils we have.

Second, this "missing link" argument is no different than the "fossil record" argument from R4. Cross-apply my answers. Fossilization is rare and is only a small snapshot of every species that ever existed.

Third, Con's drawing is silly. Our common ancestor with apes would have looked nothing like a modern gibbon. It would have most closely resembled Australopithecus afarensis (pictured above) and as explained above, this species was partially bipedal and partially a knuckle-walker (like apes).

== Underview ==

My suggested weighing mechanism for this debate is to evaluate (1) what side provided more plausible explanations and (2) what side left more questions unanswered, leaving more holes in their explanation. I have answered every question that Con put forward. Con has left key questions unanswered:

(a) If God was the only witness to Creation, how the heck did this story get conveyed to humans? Is it not more plausible that we simply made it up and wrote it down? Other parts of the Bible are from ancient mythology, e.g. Leviathans (as Con concedes). There's no reason to think the Creation story was not also just a myth passed down through oral tradition.

(b) If all animals were created at the same time and humans have had the gift of language since our creation (see Genesis 2:23), why didn't any human ever mention the dinosaurs that walked around eating us (e.g. the T-rex) or the other human-like creatures that were walking around (e.g. Homo habilis and Neanderthals)? Those seem worth mentioning.

(c) Each rock layer in geological time is quite distinct. No modern animal has ever been found in a rock layer from a time before mammals evolved (e.g. a rabbit fossil in the pre-Cambrian layer). Creationism would predict that every species would appear in every rock layer because they were all created at virtually the same time. Why don't we see that?

[Sidenote: debate convention dictates that there can be no new arguments or new responses to these questions offered in the last round, since I have no chance to respond.]

Conclusion. I have poked numerous holes in Con's explanation for the origin of species. Con failed to defend the inerrancy of the Bible: dropping numerous biblical passages that defy modern physics. If we can't trust every word in the Bible, the key assumption underlying Creationism is decimated. In contrast, I have proven that mutations exist (something Con essentially concedes) and that selection occurs in nature (something Con cold concedes), so I have proven that the two mechanisms underlying evolution do exist. Evolution is the sum of its parts, and if the parts are true, the whole is true. Because evolution is the most coherent explanation for the origin of species (that was offered in this debate), vote Pro.

[2] Shariff, A. F.; Tracy, J. L. (2011). "What Are Emotion Expressions For?"
[3] Robin Baker, "Sperm Wars"
[4] Prothero, Donald R. (2007). Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why it Matters
[5] A. P. Boss, R. H. Durisen (2005). "Chondrule-forming Shock Fronts in the Solar Nebula



In the last round, Pro doesn't deny the fact that God gave us, humans emotions. He simply states that we do have emotions, then goes on to give their functions. Never once did he explain as to how we got these emotions like I had explained. This is a very big missing piece in the theory of evolution. Emotions and morals had to come up somewhere at some time, yet the only inevitable proof is the bible. The Bible is the only book and piece of Evidence that explains so many different things, that evolutionist can't even explain. The Bible was written in BC/BCE. These accusations and stories and prophesies were told before scientist had even begun to think about evolution.

It is safe to say that scientist only have theories. A theory is [1] "a supposition or a system of ideas intended to explain something, especially one based on general principles independent of the thing to be explained.

It is safe to say, that god had created all things, even the earth. Then scientist began to observe these things and tried to figure out how they came about. Yet, scientist have no scientific idea that is accurate as to how these animals came about, and how the earth was made.

Pro 's response to my NASA argument was "Con makes this claim. However, remember my argument that if you make enough vague claims (as the Bible does), it's easy to later find confirmation from science." Then he goes to say that I never responded to the earth being flat, he never provided any scriptures to prove this. I simply stated a scripture that said the earth was "round". The thing about this assumption made by Pro, is that you can guess at multiple things and some of these guess will be right. It's just kind of dumb statement since so many prophecies in the bible were made, and many of them are correct, such as the following :

  • [2] Roundness of the earth (Isaiah 40:22)

  • Almost infinite extent of the sidereal universe (Isaiah 55:9)

  • Law of conservation of mass and energy (II Peter 3:7)

  • Hydrologic cycle (Ecclesiastes 1:7)

  • Vast number of stars (Jeremiah 33:22)

  • Law of increasing entropy (Psalm 102:25-27)

  • Paramount importance of blood in life processes (Leviticus 17:11)

  • Atmospheric circulation (Ecclesiastes 1:6)

  • Gravitational field (Job 26:7)

  • and many others.

"These are not stated in the technical jargon of modern science, of course, but in terms of the basic world of man's everyday experience; nevertheless, they are completely in accord with the most modern scientific facts..... It is significant also that no real mistake has ever been demonstrated in the Bible—in science, in history, or in any other subject. Many have been claimed, of course, but conservative Bible scholars have always been able to work out reasonable solutions to all such problems"

But yet, all scientist do is make assumptions and theories. There are so many questions that haven't been answered by scientist, yet the bible can answer the simplest questions scientist cant answer. Such as: [3]

  • How did behavioral modernity develop? Did it develop, or is John Shea right that anatomically modern humans were always behaviorally modern?

  • We have very few hominin fossils from 3-4 million years ago. What were our ancestors who lived then like?

  • It looks like Homo heidelbergensis was the ancestor of Homo sapiens and of Neandertals. We don't know much about H. heidelbergensis.

  • The Denisova hominin: what did it look like? How big was its range? How'd they end up interbreeding with modern humans?

    These are just a few questions that haven't been answered, yet if we read the bible, everything that was made and created all makes sense.





Debate Round No. 4
22 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Daniel_Nemes 2 years ago
How odd that bluesteel would argue for evolution when she is supposedly a Christian...
Posted by tejretics 2 years ago

Do you type out your arguments in Word?
Posted by Deathbydefault 3 years ago
Well for one evolution has been physically observed via bacteria. Source: Kinda hard to argue that evolution doesn't exist when you can physically watch it happen. But, hey, you can still claim we don't share a common ancestor with apes :) I wonder how long it will be before we can prove that too... Question to creationists: Under the assumption that evolution is one day proven completely true in all regards, what will you do? Not trying to be insulting to anyone, just curious. I know what I would do if God is proven real, do you know what you'd do if he was proven false? Honestly, It's only a question, no motives other than curiosity.
Posted by danzchen7 3 years ago
Generally I tend to avoid these arguments because both cases are just way to different. No matter what sort of evidence you hold against Evolution, and no matter what contradictions Evolutionists make in their arguments (such as that gamma radiation thing, which was horribly inaccurate because gamma rays would destroy, causing a very fatal BAD mutation, not a beneficial one), mainstream science will continue to try and shove Creationism down the toilet because the events depicted are evidently miraculous. Evolution is just about as miraculous, just the miracles are hidden, and when you find one, there"s always those kinds of people who tell you that you didn"t find it over and over and over". f*** it. Nobody won this debate, because Evolution is a hole in the wall + pseudo-science, and Creationism is mostly theological, and therefore no one can make a scientific case in which one is right over the other.
Posted by Lee001 3 years ago
Posted by bluesteel 3 years ago
You said carbon dating was inaccurate tho...
Posted by Lee001 3 years ago
Exactly, it goes to prove the bible was written way before scientist had claimed how the earth became about.
Posted by bluesteel 3 years ago
Also just realized this, fyi.

This ("The oldest surviving manuscripts of Isaiah are two scrolls found among the Dead Sea Scrolls; dating from about 150 to 100 BCE") is based on carbon dating the documents. []
Posted by tejretics 3 years ago
Plz remind me to vote on this ....
Posted by Lee001 3 years ago
Well I sure hope
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by tejretics 3 years ago
Who won the debate:Vote Checkmark-
Reasons for voting decision: Sources to Pro as Con copied major portions of her arguments from AiG and (the entire sperm cell argument). First, Pro uses genetic mutations and selection via. development of survival characteristics and sexual characteristics. Con completely drops this, and moves on to her rebuttal via. ova and sperm proving "evolution is wrong". Pro responds to this by an explanation using mutations in sperm influenced by environmental factors. Pro also shows transcription errors can cause mutations. Con then questions abiogenesis and uses fossil records in favor of creationism, which fail because RNA nucleotides can form in those conditions, as well as amino acids, as Pro shows. Pro shows that fossilization is very rare, and it's impossible to nonetheless find complete fossils, and uses evolutionary examples of fossils. As for the inerrancy of the Bible, Con concedes there are some errors, e.g. the earth being stationary, so upholding Pro's case. As always, happy to clarify this RFD.
Vote Placed by Envisage 3 years ago
Who won the debate:Vote Checkmark-
Reasons for voting decision: If this was a 7 point debate I would have also granted Pro conduct, since Con C/P portions of her opening round verbatim (especially regarding radiometric dating) from AiG and Creationtoday. I noted that the majority of her round was original, but plagiarism on any level is a surefire way to immediately enter my bad books on voting. Regarding Args - Pro laid down a straightforward case of mutations & natural selection for evolution to occur - Con never challenged this concept, and her only argument against mutations regarding environmental mutations in the female 'X' chromosome was soundly refuted by Pro & dropped by Con. Pro's substantive argument against creationism regarding the age of the Earth was sustained by Pro, and dropped by Con in R3 and R4 (which amounts to a concession in a debate). Cons argument affirming the Creationism's validity with life from non-life, emotions, morals and Biblical prophecies met too much mitigation from Pro to hold any weight. Clear Pro win.