Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in both the Rock Island Argus and The Dispatch of Moline, Illinois. The title is Evolution and the eye of reason. The newspapers’ joint website has a comments feature.
Unless the letter-writer is a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name — but today we’ve got a preacher. It’s Pastor Don Goembel. We don’t know where he preaches, but his website says: “I’m 75 year-old American male, currently in Orion, United States. I have 8 friends around the world.” We’ll give you a few excerpts from rev’s letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!
“The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason.” — Benjamin Franklin
That’s a fine quote from one of our favorite Founding Fathers. According to Wikiquote it’s from Poor Richard’s Almanack. But the rev doesn’t like it. He says:
Science deals exclusively with things that can be accurately measured. Many things exist but can’t be measured precisely. You might have heard one could put a million monkeys to work on a million typewriters and, eventually, get all the great works of literature. This 250-word letter, if using only the 26 letters of the alphabet, makes the odds 3.3 followed by 80 zeros to 1. A scientist friend estimates that greater than the number of subatomic particles in the universe. Impossible!
Okay. The odds are against a million monkeys producing the rev’s letter. But somehow, the rev has out-performed all those monkeys. After that amazing fact, he tells us:
Cosmologists now believe the universe to be 13.8 billion years old. 4.3 followed by 16 zeroes seconds — a miniscule fraction of the above number — making Darwinian evolution require many evolutionary iterations per second to bring us to our present state, with most iterations failures. Believing today’s universe “just happened” requires shutting “the eye of reason” much tighter!
Wow — the odds are against everything! Yet here we are. How is this possible? The rev continues with a scripture quote:
“Now without faith it is impossible to please him, for the one who approaches God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6).
That’s very inspirational. Let’s read on:
I posit those who insist there is no God are exercising much more blind faith than those of us who acknowledge the Judeo-Christian God who appears in nature, the Bible and the Holy Spirit. Everyone lives forever.
[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] And now we come to the end:
Whether you live in God’s presence or in the lake of fire is up to you. God is infinitely more credible than human reason alone. Seek Him!
Amazing. Now we’ll have to reconsider our long-held opinion about Ben Franklin. We thought he was a great man, but it seems that he was a fool! Great letter, rev.
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