First, a note to my readers. A revised manuscript of Living Right in a World of Woe has been submitted and processed by the publisher. It corrects some citing errors that got past the proofers. Also, the price of the eBook version has been dropped to 99 cents in an effort to get more people to read it.
It has been about eight months since my last post. It is not because I have been idle; it is because I have been involved. We traveled back to Florida this past November to spend two months at the missionary homes where we have stayed when in the States for about twenty years. The same day we arrived the announcement was made that the homes had already been sold and were closing down. However, they were honoring the reservations already booked so we were able to stay there for one last time.
To make a real long story much shorter, it did not seem right to us that the 55 homes and eight acres of land that had been donated for missionary housing should be sold before any indication was given by the President or Board that this was going to happen. I fell back on to my old CPA skills and started investigating. After about three months of investigating, I found out that the President and Executive Director of this ministry made false statements to its supporters and missionary beneficiaries; they colluded with Pinellas County, Florida to sell the property to the county in secret and in apparent violation of the Florida Sunshine Laws; and they apparently violated the Charitable Trust Doctrine by selling the houses which were donated for specific charitable purposes.
A formal complaint with documented evidence was filed with the Florida Attorney General, Pam Bondi. The Florida Attorney General has declined to act on behalf of this Florida Charitable Trust. On June 7, my AP news app had an article about Pam Bondi. She personally solicited a political contribution from Donald Trump at the same time her office was considering investigating alleged fraud at Trump University. She received a $25,000 donation and her office decided not to pursue the investigation.
The President of the missionary homes ministry is a well-known Florida attorney who claims to be a Christian but apparently doesn’t read the Bible the way I do. Just last month a judge disqualified him from a sex-abuse case for trying to represent both sides.
There was a time when this type of self-serving behavior by public servants and ministry leaders would not be tolerated. If prison was not sentenced, at least they would lose their position. But as my previous blog post stated: “The Times They Are A-Changin’”. The societal changes that began in the 1960’s have resulted in the absence of moral judgments. About the only Bible command society wants to obey is, “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” Illegal and immoral behavior is practiced with impunity.
I want to deal briefly in this blog with an article that appeared on the Business Insider website. The site provides and analyzes business news as well as other articles of interest to the editors. The CEO and Editor-in-Chief is Henry Blodget. He worked on Wall Street until he was charged with securities fraud. He agreed to a permanent ban from the securities industry and payments of $4 million in fines and disgorgement, but no prison. Not a problem – this man is now giving business advice to millions of people from a web-based company that last year sold 88% of its stock to a German publisher for a reported $343 million.
Now to the Business Insider article at hand. It shows, I believe, that not only is society morally bankrupt, it is intellectually bankrupt as well. You would think that Harvard University would be a hotbed of intellectuals, and that physicists might lead the pack. However, after reading the article posted on November 14, 2015 about the book, Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs written by Lisa Randall, a theoretical physicist at Harvard, I am sure that is not the case.
In that book she puts forth the theory that the extinction of the dinosaurs was necessary for the emergence of humans on the planet and the whole process was brought about by dark matter. What, in the name of what is, is dark matter you may ask. Randall describes it as “a dark, pancake-shaped patty of densely packed dark matter within our galaxy” which she says exerts gravitational influence.
OK, she has propounded a theory on the existence of dark matter and like a good scientist she must test it. Right? Not anymore. She goes on to say, “Dark matter has never been directly detected. However, there is enough evidence for its immense gravitational influence on our universe that the vast majority of the scientific community agrees that dark matter is a form of mysterious matter that we can neither see or touch, but that nevertheless must permeate the cosmos.”
The article goes on to state, “We have a dozen or so functioning detectors underground, on Earth’s surface, and in space – and none of them has yet managed to sniff out a dark-matter particle.” There you have it. The testing that can be done does not prove the theory, but that does not stop Harvard University from teaching the theory and it did not stop her from finding a publisher.
So, what does all this have to do with society being intellectually bankrupt? Going back to Randall’s statement: “dark matter is a form of mysterious matter that we can neither see or touch, but that nevertheless must permeate the cosmos”, we see a basic assumption (must permeate the cosmos) that is not really a product of intellect but of ignorance. Nothing is said of how gravitational influence brought about the existence of humans that, because of gravity, walk on the earth, but did not influence the development of birds and bees that defy gravity. Even that is not the ignorance I am talking about.
The assumption is made that dark matter “must” exist because at present there is no other scientific explanation for the existence of humans in the universe even though there is no evidence for dark matter’s existence. If an assumption is going to be made, why not make an intelligent assumption. In all of intellectual science’s theories and assumptions, the intellectuals have never been able to explain the existence of order in the universe or how a single human cell operates the way it does with its irreducible biochemical complexity, or the origin of the material universe. There are only unproven theories that do not account for everything that is or account for why things are the way they are. Only ignorance would hang its hat on these theories.
The alternative, and I believe the intelligent assumption, is to believe what the original scientists believed. They believed in the existence of a God who created the universe with intelligent order and with certain natural laws functioning within the universe. They believed the job of the scientist is to discover those natural laws. The list of scientists who believed in God include Copernicus, Bacon, Kepler, Galileo, Newton, Boyle, Faraday, Mendel, Kelvin, Planck and Einstein. Einstein recognized the impossibility of a non-created universe. These men were the intellectuals of their day, and unlike the intellectuals of today, their theories have not been disproved.
Here is an excerpt from the Introduction to the Apologetics volume of my School of Christianity which is waiting to be published:
Evidence, Proof, and Certainty
As we begin this section some definitions are in order. Evidence is anything which provides grounds for belief or disbelief of a proposition. Evidence appeals to the mind. Proof is evidence that establishes the truth of a proposition beyond any doubt. Certainty is the mental state of being positive and confident about an event or the truth of a proposition. Since certainty is a state of the mind it is possible to have certainty even without absolute proof. But you can have neither certainty nor proof without evidence. Christian Apologetics seeks to provide evidences for the Christian faith that will lead to certainty, but not proof, of its truths. We can take propositions about Christianity to be certain when we have no doubt about their truth. When the absence of doubt is justifiable we can be certain, and evidences justify the absence of doubt.
Contrary to popular opinion, proof is not available in science, and certainly not in religion. The scientific process consists of observation of some natural phenomenon (occurrence); the formulation of a theory based on that observation; testing of the theory by repeating the phenomenon a number of times; and based upon the test results, rejecting the theory or accepting it as a scientific fact. However, it is not fact, it remains a theory with a high probability of being fact. Science deals with measurements and averages since the same occurrence of an event cannot be repeated. Only a similar event can be made to happen and the similar event cannot be the exact duplicate of the original because, if nothing else, the time has changed. So measurements are taken and those measurements are averaged to get a result. They do not produce facts or proof of the original theory, only the probability (it may be very high) that the theory is correct. Proof is limited to mathematics (3 eggs times 4 equals 12 eggs and the eggs can be counted to prove it), and logic (If A equals B in all respects, and B equals C in all respects, then A equals C in all respects, and A and C can be compared to prove it).
We live in a world in which much of what we believe and do is based upon probability rather than proof. You normally do not sit in a chair full of anxiety that it may break at any time. You cannot be certain that it will not break, but you can sit with a high degree of probability that it will not break. You only have proof that the chair will not break after you have finished with the chair and gotten up. It did what you, by faith, trusted it to do and it proved itself to be true to your expectations.
I am willing to go with probabilities. You can do your own research, but I find the most frequent scientific estimate of the probability of life formed by natural process to be around 1 chance in 10 to the 40,000 power, that is 1 with 40,000 zeros after it. The atheistic scientist would say that no matter how small the probability is, life exists. That is like looking at a man on top of a 10-story building and saying, “No matter how small the probabilities are that he jumped up there from the ground, he is up there, so he must have jumped.” The conclusion does not take into account other possible and more likely (or more probable) explanations of what is. More on this subject in the next post.