Creationist Wisdom #1,021: The Designer

Today’s letter-to-the-editor — it’s actually a column — appears in the Herald-Leader of Siloam Springs, Arkansas. The title is Who’s the Designer?, and the newspaper 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 — at least a part-time preacher. It’s Gene Linzey, described at the end as: “a speaker, author and mentor.” We never encountered a mentor before, so we Googled around and found what appears to be his website. The About page says that he is: “a former bi-vocational pastor and music minister. He has served as president of the Siloam Springs Writers Guild in Siloam Springs, AR., and as chaplain for the USS Yorktown CV-5 Survivors Club.” He qualifies for full name treatment, and we’ll refer to him as the mentor. Here are some excerpts from his column, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:

While I openly admit that my knowledge is limited, others who oppose my views get upset or frustrated if I declare their knowledge to be limited or based on faulty premises. Let’s look at a few ideas logically and scientifically. To start, faith is required to believe in what has not been proven. For example, I had faith that the chair would support me. I sat on it to test my theory. It is holding me, so faith is no longer required. Let’s continue.

Are you sitting in a chair, dear reader? Then you too acted on faith. The mentor’s column is very long, so we’ll have to skip a lot and be very selective in our excerpts. He says:

We cannot know what is incorrect or wrong unless we have a standard of what is correct to judge it against. To know what’s wrong, we must know what is right. Therefore, since we know it is evil to murder, we instinctively understand the intrinsic value of life. Since we know that lying is wrong, we instinctively understand the moral value of truth. The principle of right and wrong is imbedded [sic] in everyone’s conscience.

If right and wrong weren’t embedded in your conscience, then if someone kidnaps you, tortures you, rapes you, and threatens to kill you, you wouldn’t have any idea that you were being mistreated. After that truism, the mentor tells us:

How about the concept of truth? Some people emphatically declare that since everything is relative, there is no absolute truth. But is that statement correct? Is it absolutely true that there are no absolute truths? Think before you answer.

By now you’ve probably realized that the mentor is your intellectual superior, so you’re ready for what follows:

Some people affirm that Biblical Creation is not true [Gasp!], but then claim that the mythical and unprovable Big Bang created the well-organized cosmos with logical and scientific precision with no intellect or mind to guide anything. That’s absurd! [Yeah!] I don’t care how it’s explained, it is scientifically and physically impossible for matter to self-generate out of nothingness. The Big Bang hypothesis is science fiction, and is a way to get away from the concept that God created the heavens and the earth.

Creationists always say that about the big bang, and we always say that the theory doesn’t claim that the universe magically appeared ex nihilo. No one knows what existed before the great expansion of the universe. Anyway, the mentor continues:

I’ve never received an intelligent answer to my question: If evolution were true, how did rock particles turn into living organisms? [Brilliant question!] By the way, have you ever looked at a one-celled amoeba using a microscope? I have. Those critters are just as complex as the human anatomy. [Right!] And if you ever stop and think about it, there’s no intelligent rationale as to how amoebas evolved into other life-forms. In reality, evolution is not scientific. It’s a hypothesis, we call it a theory, and teach it as fact. But that’s not science. At best, it is science fiction based on faith.

Yup — evolution is “science fiction based on faith.” Let’s read on:

To believe billions of galaxies came into existence due to an explosion of absolutely nothing takes more faith than to believe our Creator — God — spoke the cosmos into being.

Okay. Here’s another excerpt:

In order for people (agnostics, atheists, higher critics, skeptics, non-believers) to persuade me that Biblical Creation is wrong, they should give me a viable alternative. But they can’t. … That’s why many who believed in (had faith in) evolution have gravitated toward the Intelligent Design concept. But they still have a problem: if there’s no God, who is the intelligent designer?

Ooooooooooooh! Who is the designer — blessed be he? The answer is right at the end of the mentor’s column:

Understanding that ALL concepts of creation are intrinsically religious, the only logical approach is Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning, God….” God is the designer of it all.

Wowie — the mentor has solved one of the greatest scientific mysteries of all time! Someone should tell the Discoveroids.

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22 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #1,021: The Designer

  1. Well, if Gene told me that the reason he doesn’t fall through his chair, despite the fact that his chair and his ass are mostly empty space, is some mystical mythology from the bronze age, rather than the interaction of electrons, I wouldn’t believe him either.

  2. Michael Fugate

    Think carefully Gene before you answer….
    God is the designer of it all.
    including God?

  3. Laurette McGovern

    Actually, I am rather impressed as he is chaplain of the CV-5 Survivors Club. The aircraft carrier USS Yorktown was damaged during the Battle of the Coral Sea and quickly repaired at Pearl Harbor, in time to be included in the Battle of Midway where she played a pivotal role. Sunk at the end of that battle.

    Can’t be too many survivors left.

    Otherwise, the chaplain’s account leaves me VERY unimpressed

  4. … they should give me a viable alternative
    how did rock particles turn into living organisms
    OK, tell me your viable alternative. How do living organisms appear?

  5. And once again we have a gawd-bot illustrating how easy it is to be st00pid!

  6. Michael Fugate

    He has an independently published book…

  7. Preachy Gene is in for a Nobel Prize for physics:

    “it is scientifically and physically impossible for matter to self-generate out of nothingness.”
    Electron-positron pair production, according to quantum physics, is generated out of physical nothingness.
    Oh wait, Preachy Gene is talking philosophical nothingness! But that’s exactly what he believes – that his god created our natural reality out of philosophical nothingness. First there was nothing, then his god spoke and voila – our natural reality.
    So what will it be? Is Preachy Gene saying that quantum mechanics and its offspring are scientifically and physically impossible? Or is he providing an argument against his own god?

    Foggedabouddid – Preachy Gene has no clue what he’s talking about anyway. This

    “due to an explosion of absolutely nothing”
    says it all – whatever the Big Bang was, an explosion it was not.

    “they should give me a viable alternative”
    Waste of effort given Preachy Gene’s lack of scientific understanding.

  8. @Michael Fugate
    I’d like to hear about the design principles that God follows. And about the design problems that God had to solve.

  9. Michael Fugate

    I want to know how God was able design God – how else, according to Gene, did it happen? How did a potential intelligence become an actual intelligence?

  10. ….have you ever looked at a one-celled amoeba using a microscope?
    I haven’t, but if I had witnessed an ameoba using a microscope I’d be plenty impressed.

  11. Michael Fugate

    Seems the designer put another planet in a star’s near orbit…
    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-00014-7
    “Earth-sized exoplanet ‘habitable zone’ is one of closest yet to our world”

  12. Who is the designer?

    I am Spartacus!

  13. Somebody should mentor the mentor about the Big Bang: That concept was postulated by a Belgian priest.

  14. Paul S:
    Did you shoot that elephant in your pajamas?

  15. Gene tells us:

    In order for people (agnostics, atheists, higher critics, skeptics, non-believers) to persuade me that Biblical Creation is wrong, they should give me a viable alternative.

    But what does he say to true believers of other ‘holy’ scripture? They think they do have a ‘viable alternative’; no doubt Gene thinks they’re worshippers of false gods…

  16. Michael Fugate

    “I’ve never received an intelligent answer to my question: If evolution were true, how did rock particles turn into living organisms? ”

    If an intelligent answer were provided, would he know it was either intelligent or an answer?
    If a person had rock particles instead of a brain, would that person know they did?

  17. @FrankB: Preachy Gene is talking philosophical nothingness! But that’s exactly what he believes – that his god created our natural reality out of philosophical nothingness.
    In philosophical nothingness there is no rule that that forbids a god (or anything else) to spontaneously appear. Once a god begins to exist, it can make a rule that nothing else happens without its approval, and that it can do whatever it likes. But, if it isn’t quick enough, another god might pop into existence too. Thus both creation myths of Genesis 1 and 2 might be true, Elohim and JHVH both pop out of philosophical nothingness, one of them, or they agree to, create the primordial earth, and so on. This would also explain where Cain got his wife, and where he found enough people to populate the city he founded: he was a son of JHVH’s Adam, but, as Gen 1:27 tells us, Elohim made lots of people (and told them to breed, which JHVH forgot to suggest to Adam and Eve).

  18. Mentor Gene Linzey asks, “If evolution were true, how did rock particles turn into living organisms?”
    Assuming evolution to be true, carbon-based life forms didn’t arise from silicon-based rocks. If the Bible is true, “God formed man of the dust of the ground”, which would be largely silicon dioxide and other compounds of silicon and aluminium. Should I suspect that the Biblical account is maybe not totally accurate?

  19. [The Mentor:] “I don’t care how it’s explained, […]”

    Problably the most accurate part of his message. Gene is not like other creationists, who try to look more educated about science than thay really are. He never bothered to learn what scientists say and he is proud of it.

    It may explain why he never heard answers, intelligent or not, to his questions.

    “By the way, have you ever looked at a one-celled amoeba using a microscope? I have. Those critters are just as complex as the human anatomy.”

    It is a strange comparison: an organism vs. a scientific field (anatomy). But, Rev. Lindsey, if an amoeba is just as complex as a human being, and other lifeforms, why evolution would be impossible? If they are of equal complexity, what’s the real difficulty of changing one lifeform into another?

    However, it is pretty easy to differentiate amoebas from human beings. For one, humans could not be placed in toto under the microscope whereas you can have a lot of amoebas on a slide. That is because humans are composed of a lot of cells, each one at least as complex as an amoeba, but with more overall diversity.

  20. Michael Fugate

    When you need a laugh after this
    https://www.jesusandmo.net/
    Today is resurrection of one on theodicy – apologetics anyone?

  21. Dave Luckett

    Let us not descend into the tortured realms of apologetics. That way lies madness, and jesusandmo, as usual, hits the nail on the head. As has already been said in this august blog, even Aquinas knew perfectly well that his arguments for the existence of God were not watertight, and only provided some reinforcement for an already existing faith. Faith is required, as the Christian church has always said. And there, alas, we come to grief.

    As has the preacher here. I gain the very strong impression that, like many of his kidney, he has carefully kept his knowledge limited so as not to intrude upon his faith. That is, his ignorance is actually cultivated. Anybody who thinks that an amoeba is “as complex as a human being” on the strength of looking at one in a microscope has no clue about complexity; and as jimroberts points out, that does not lead to the conclusion that either is unique – which is what Gene wants to believe.

    As Chaplain of the CV-5 survivors’ association, I don’t assume that Gene is a survivor himself. He’d have to be in his nineties, at least. But honour from an Australian for that connection. USS Yorktown, USS Lexington and the US Navy fought the Japanese to a standstill at the Battle of the Coral Sea, and turned a Japanese troop convoy around that was bound for Port Moresby and the annihilation of Australians fighting on the Kokoda Track. USS Yorktown was badly damaged and USS Lexington, “Lady Lex”, was sunk. Admiral Nimitz didn’t have to send two of his four carriers to do that, but we will never forget that he did.

  22. @Hans is not incorrect but incomplete: “That concept was postulated by a Belgian priest”, likely independently some three years after atheist soviet-commie Alexander Friedman did the same.

    @JimR: “In philosophical nothingness there is no rule that that forbids a god (or anything else) to spontaneously appear.”
    Aplogists counter this with “everything that begins to exist must have a cause.” I’m on your side. TomS’ objections to a supernatural version of design are general – we humans cannot reasonably argue about rules in a supposed supernatural domain. This is over and over again confirmed by creacrappers who continuously contradict themselves, contradict each other and are incapable of clearing them up. I refer to Wittgenstein’s famous quote again.