Creationist Wisdom #425: The Missing Link

Today’s letter-to-the-editor brings us back to the Muskogee Phoenix of Muskogee, Oklahoma, where we find God’s plan of creation is still at work.

The letter-writer is a preacher — Rev. Barret Vanlandingham of the Fort Gibson Church of Christ. If his name seems familiar, it’s because we recently wrote about one of his letters to that newspaper — see Creationist Wisdom #400: Preacher with Proof.

We’ll give you a few excerpts from the rev’s latest letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. To make the rev’s text even more readable than it already is, we’ll omit his scriptural citations. Here we go:

Every day we see evidence of God’s power and ancient plan for the inhabitants of earth, still in effect today after 6,000 years of recorded history, right down to how animals continue to reproduce after their own kinds. It is interesting that the phrase “according to their own kinds” is mentioned at least seven times in the Genesis creation story in reference to animal reproduction.

Wow — it’s mentioned seven times! The first time we encountered that kind of argument was here: WorldNetDaily: Thomas Jefferson, Theocrat, where we named it Arithmetical Theology. Then the rev tells us:

After that, God created man and woman, and told them to be fruitful and increase in number, and to rule over all the animals God had created that were also to reproduce after their own kinds. There is nothing to indicate God caused or even allowed one animal species to evolve from a different species. That statement is also true of humans.

The rev claims that there’s no mention of evolution in scripture, so according to the principles of Arithmetical Theology, evolution scores a big fat zero, and that’s all we need to know. But wait — we’ve previously pointed out a couple of evolution-friendly passages — see Is Evolution in the Bible?, and also Is Evolution in the Bible? (Part 2). Now we’re confused, so we return to the rev for guidance. Let’s read on:

Scientific proof would have to agree with that today as well since there is still no evidence, fossil or otherwise, that one species has ever evolved into another. ALL scientific evidence is consistent with a Biblical view of how we all got here.

The rev made that same “no evidence” claim in his earlier letter, and we referred you to our Common Creationist Claims Confuted (CCCC) where claims such as that are debunked. There’s no need to repeat ourselves, so we’ll continue with his letter:

I say this because there have been [no?] witnesses, no tests and certainly no repeatable tests that can prove the Big Bang Theory of how the universe supposedly began 13.8 billion years ago, or the Theory of Evolution (how Charles Darwin believed life began).

Hey, Rev: Darwin’s theory of evolution isn’t about the Big Bang or the origin of life. But you’re right, rev — we can’t re-create the universe in the lab. Here’s more:

The reason a “missing link” or “ape-man” set of bones or even a fossil of one has never been found is because there isn’t one. That’s why science calls it the “missing link.”

Aaaargh!! The rev has found our weak spot. We were so desperate to find the missing link that we fraudulently fabricated Piltdown Man. That fiasco was so embarrassing that to conceal it, we’ve stopped talking about the Theory of the Missing Link. It now exists only in creationist literature. [*End creationist fantasy mode*] For a more rational treatment of the missing link, see Piltdown Man: The Creationists’ Savior. As we always do, we’ll link to Wikipedia’s List of transitional fossils, and we’ll add their List of human evolution fossils.

Then the rev refers to that recent public opinion poll that we wrote about here: New Opinion Poll on Evolution, Big Bang, etc., about which he says:

An Associated Press survey in March of more than a thousand adults reveals that when it comes to the theory of evolution, Americans are only somewhat confident (24 percent), or not too confident (16 percent), or not at all confident (27 percent). … To this, I would add that since something cannot come from nothing, something would have always had to exist. That “something” is God. Have a great week!

That’s how the letter ends. What can we say? The rev seems supremely confident that his thinking is correct, and the public is with him. The public is always right when it comes to science, so that settles the matter. Think about it, dear reader — while there’s still time.

Copyright © 2014. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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11 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #425: The Missing Link

  1. Jim Thomerson

    I have come to understand that most creationist comments represent a mixture of ignorance, stupidity, and dishonesty. The mix can vary throughout the statement, and sometimes it is difficult to tell which factor is ascendent. For example, does the comment about no ape-man fossils represent ignorance or dishonesty?

  2. waldteufel

    The rev appears to be a common garden variety creationist twit. No knowledge at all of what science is or how it works. I don’t think I would accuse this preacher of lying, because I think he’s just stupid and too god-soaked to know the difference between reality and the oogity boogity world that rattles around in his head.

  3. Eddie Janssen

    If “something cannot come from nothing”, everything has to be eternal. Or is my understanding of the English language failing me?

  4. What gripes me even more about these numbskulls is that they don’t even know the basics of their own “religion” and I use that term loosely around these Bible-thumping, uneducated grifters.

  5. according to their own kinds never appears in the Bible.
    The word commonly translated as “kind” is always in the singular. And, by the way, only appears the set phrase “according to his/their kind”.
    I ask the reader to imagine what that phrase would mean in any context other than the Bible, without all of the presuppositions that we bring to that.
    I don’t get much meaning out of it. Maybe, “they were they way you’d expect”? Probably no one would take it to mean, “they were totally unrelated to any others”, or “and nothing will ever change thereafter”

  6. But the good reverend forgets the “Cardiff Giant” episode where fundamentalists were in a tizzy and how they were amazed with the giant from biblical times.

  7. While mentioning Wikipedia articles, Transitional fossil has, under “Misunderstandings”, a section called “Missing link”.

  8. “It is interesting that the phrase “according to their own kinds” is mentioned at least seven times”
    What’s even more interesting is what a fundie explained to me recently: Canaanites and Israelites were also created according to their own kinds; the OT god hadn’t given the first “personhood” and hence it was “not really genocide” when the latter killed them off.
    If this sounds like nazi-logic to you I won’t contradict you.

    @Waldteufel: all nice and well, but Exodus 20:16 doesn’t accept such excuses. As I still have to meet the first creacrapper who does not violate this commandment the only possible conclusion is that according to their own belief system they, including the rev, must expect to go to hell.

  9. Garnetstar

    Anti-science types always get this wrong: it’s not, for example, the Big Bang itself that has to be repeatable and observable, it’s the evidence for it that does.

    Certainly cosmic background radiation is repeatable and observable, it’s always there and can be observed by anyone with the right kind of radio dish. Same with evolution: evidence from the study of fossils, radiometric dataing,etc., is always “observable” and repeatable.

    It’s not the event itself, it’s the evidence for the event.

  10. @Garnetstar
    More things that are not repeatable: The Solar System, Antarctica, World War I, …
    More things that are not observable: the center of the Sun, electrons, World War I (nobody saw more than a part of it), …
    Actually, science is most important in what it tells us about things that are not immediately perceived.

  11. Techreseller

    Yet another face plant in the palm.