Monday, August 18, 2014

UNICORNS IN THE BIBLE??

Hi everyone!

How are all you fine people out there? I am well, enjoying all the rain we are having for this monsoon season. I think I like the stormy and overcast skies as much as I like the thunder and rain because cloudy skies are more like an anomaly rather than the norm here where I live. 

And that is what I want to share with you this week and probably for a few more weeks too. Bible anomalies. We have already gone over a few, in particular UFO’s and giants. But there is at least one more….unicorns!
Notice the cloven hooves and beard

Many people don’t even have a clue that unicorns are written about in the Holy Scriptures, but believe it or not, they are. So lets not just put our heads into a hole or look the other way! Let’s grab the bull by the horns and delve into this. After all, it must be important since God wrote about it.

What picture comes to your mind at the mention of unicorns? Is it the goatish horse like creature with a beard and mane and long fur on its legs? Or is it the majestic white stallion with flowing mane and tale and a single spiral spike growing from its forehead. That, of course is my favorite since I am a horse lover. But let’s see what scripture tells us unicorns really are.

The unicorn is mentioned nine times in the Bible. Numbers 23:22 (God brought them out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn.) and again in Numbers 24:8 (God brought him forth out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn: he shall eat up the nations his enemies, and shall break their bones, and pierce them through with his arrows.) Deuteronomy 33:17 (His glory is like the firstling of his bullock, and his horns are like the horns of unicorns: with them he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth: and they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh.) Job 39:9 and 10 (Will the unicorn be willing to serve thee, or abide by thy crib? Canst thou bind the unicorn with his band in the furrow? or will he harrow the valleys after thee?) Psalms 22:21 (Save me from the lion's mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.) Psalms 29:6 (He maketh them also to skip like a calf; Lebanon and Sirion like a young unicorn.) Psalms 92:10 (But my horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of an unicorn: I shall be anointed with fresh oil.) And Isaiah 34:7 (And the unicorns shall come down with them, and the bullocks with the bulls; and their land shall be soaked with blood, and their dust made fat with fatness.)

Now let’s put together what the Bible means. First we can deduct unicorns are very strong and that they are fierce. Then we see that the unicorn is not likely to be tamed, at least to pull a plow. Horses are domestic animals that train well (so scratch the beautiful, white, unicorn-horsey creature). It also seems this animal is fairly large. And lastly the Bible lets us know that it is a real animal, not a fairytale. Many commentators think it was the giant wild ox, or aurochs. Psalms 92:10 indicates, however, that it did have a “horn”, not two that may have looked like one horn from a distance. But Deuteronomy 33:17 speaks of the “horns of unicorns,” which could mean several one-horned animals or two-horned animals. 

pictograph from a cave painting
We can thus safely reason that the unicorns mentioned in the Bible were real animals, not an imaginary horse-like creature. Also all of the verses in scripture that refer to unicorns do so in the context of familiar animals—peacocks and eagles, lambs and lions, bullocks and goats, donkeys and horses, dogs and calves. In addition, the biblical unicorns behave like ordinary animals—skipping like calves (Psalm 29:6) and bleeding when they die (Isaiah 34:7). 

Then the question becomes...exactly what is a unicorn?

So does the Bible contain the only documentation of this unique animal? Let’s look into other historical resources. The famous

explorer Marco Polo traveled into the far east in the 12th century. In his travels to Sumatra, he encountered an animal with one horn. However his description of unicorns in Sumatra sounds like a rhinoceros: “They have wild elephants and plenty of unicorns, which are scarcely smaller than elephants. They have the hair of a buffalo and feet like an elephant’s. They have a single large black horn in the middle of the forehead . . . They are very ugly brutes to look at. They are not at all such as we describe them when we relate that they let themselves be captured by virgins, but clean contrary to our notions.”

It could be that Marco Polo had stumbled upon the elasmotherium, an extinct giant rhinoceros. “The elasmotherium’s 33-inch-long skull has a huge bony protuberance on the frontal bone consistent with the support structure for a massive horn. In fact, archaeologist Austen Henry Layard, in his 1849 book Nineveh and Its Remains, sketched a single-horned creature from an obelisk in company with two-horned bovine animals; he identified the single-horned animal as an Indian rhinoceros. The biblical unicorn could have been the elasmotherium.”1

Fossil of an elasmotherium


“Eighteenth century reports from southern Africa described rock drawings and eyewitness accounts of fierce, single-horned, equine-like animals. One such report describes “a single horn, directly in front, about as long as one’s arm, and at the base about as thick . . . . [It] had a sharp point; it was not attached to the bone of the forehead, but fixed only in the skin.”2

“Assyrian archaeology provides one other possible solution to the unicorn identity crisis. The biblical unicorn could have been an aurochs (a kind of wild ox known to the Assyrians as rimu). The aurochs’s horns were very symmetrical and often appeared as one in profile, as can be seen on Ashurnasirpal II’s palace relief and Esarhaddon’s stone prism. Fighting rimu (the Hebrew name) was a popular sport
 

for Assyrian kings. On a broken obelisk, for instance, Tiglath-Pileser I boasted of slaying them in the Lebanon mountains. Extinct since about 1627, aurochs, Bos primigenius, were huge bovine creatures. Julius Caesar described them in his Gallic Wars as: ‘a little below the elephant in size, and of the appearance, color, and shape of a bull. Their strength and speed are extraordinary; they spare neither man nor wild beast which they have espied . . . . Not even when taken very young can they be rendered familiar to men and tamed. The size, shape, and appearance of their horns differ much from the horns of our oxen. These they anxiously seek after, and bind at the tips with silver, and use as cups at their most sumptuous entertainments.’”

Egyptian carvings, and cave painting also depict animals with one horn or if the beast turned its head slightly, could look like one horn.

Some scientist have even suggested that the unicorn could be a type of dinosaur! We will continue next week… 

Until then, take care and God bless!
Willow Dressel

This week in the night skies for the northern latitudes “Saturday, August 23, August is prime Milky Way time. After dark, the Milky Way runs from Sagittarius and Scorpius in the south-southwest, up and left across Aquila and through the big Summer Triangle very high in the southeast and east, and on down through Cassiopeia to Perseus rising low in the north-northeast.”5

For the southern latitudes… “Evening sky on Thursday August 21 looking north-west as seen from Adelaide at 22:00 (10:00 pm) ACST in South Australia. Mars and Saturn are close together under the head of  Scorpius. Similar views will be seen elsewhere at the equivalent local time.”6



References:

Monday, August 11, 2014

MOVIE REVIEW, GOD’S NOT DEAD, ARGUMENTS, SCIENTIFIC OBJECTIONS TO GOD, MORAL OBJECTIONS, SKEPTICS

GODS NOT DEAD!

(SORRYTHE BLOG SIGHT IS NOT LETTING ME POST PICTURES.ILL TRY AGAIN TOMORROW!)

Good day everyone! And a fine one it has been today. And this week will get even better when both of my daughters are coming to visits with the grandkids! Yeah! One of the things we like to do best is go see a good movie.

If you haven’t already watched the movie “God’s Not Dead”, I highly recommend it. The movie went over some critical issue Christians face today. It is about a young freshman college student who stood up to his philosophy professor, and really the rest of the class too, to pronounce that God is not dead. Many arguments 
ensued from the professor that the student had to refute. I am not going into any more detail for the sake of those who haven’t seen it. I just want to point out that though we covered in quite a bit of detail the different skeptics, I neglected to mention one thing. That is that skeptics often overlap in their arguments. In this case the professor started out with scientific objections, but the real cause was moral objections because he had suffered a great deal of pain. 
If you get a chance to watch it you should recognize some of the objections that were used. It is a great movie to use for your own growth in answering the skeptic. Try to formulate your own response to the objections, then see how close they are to the college students explanations. Are your descriptions sound? Would they make the skeptic think?

Roger Patterson wrote for Answers In Genesis in their movie review section; “I trust that you can use God’s Not Dead...to equip yourself and others to stand boldly for Christ. Whether challenges come from other Christians or those who stand against Christ, I pray that you will look to Scripture as your absolute authority in every area of life and not be taken captive by old-earth, evolutionary views—whether cosmological, biological, or geological—that are based on the elementary principles of the world and the traditions of men (Colossians 2:1–10). Rather, look to Christ and rely on the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to carefully evaluate the arguments being offered to you, taking every
thought captive to the obedience of Christ, holding fast to the good and using it to spread the hope of salvation found in Jesus Christ—our Creator and Savior.” I couldn’t agree more.

Take care and God  bless,
Willow Dressel

This week in the night skies; for the norther hemisphere⎯“Tuesday, August 12 Peak Perseid meteor [shower] night late tonight. But the Moon, just two days after full, compromises the view. See our article, Perseids vs. Moonlight: Which Will Prevail?.”2

For the southern lats⎯“The Perseid Meteor Shower runs from July 17–August 24, and peaks on the morning of Wednesday August 13 between 11 am-2:00 pm AEST (00h to 03h on August 13 UT).  Despite this being a quite reasonable meteor shower in the northern hemisphere, for most of Australia the radiant is below the horizon, and only the very occasional meteor will be seen shooting up from the northern horizon.
This year is particularly bad, not only does the peak occur after sunrise, but the nearly full Moon is not far from the radiant on the best nights.
Anyone south of Brisbane will see only the occasional meteor, say maybe one or two per hour (or less), the further north of Brisbane you are, the more meteors you will see.
You can check predictions for your local area at the NASA meteor flux estimator (choose 7 Perseids and 12-13 August 2014). People around the latitude of Darwin have the best chance of seeing meteors, possibly as many as one every 10 minutes at the peak (see table below). Next is places with the latitude of Cairns, then with the latitude of Mackay (like Port Headland and Mt Isa), and the places with the latitude of Alice Springs (again,see table below). 
To see the meteors, you will need to be up from around 3:00 am local time on the 13th (yes, a really horrible hour of the morning), with best views 4:00 am-5:30 am. The meteor shower will be located due North, with the radiant just above the northern horizon. Cloud cover predictions can be found at SkippySky.
When you get up, allow at least 5 minutes for your eyes to adjust, and be patient, it may be several minutes before you are rewarded with you first meteor, then a couple will come along in quick succession. Choose a viewing spot where you can see a large swathe of sky without trees or buildings getting in the way, or with streetlights getting in your eyes. The darker the spot the better (but do be sensible, don't choose a spot in an unsalubrious park for example).”3

References:

Monday, August 4, 2014

2014.08.04.MORAL SKEPTICISM, PEACE, BROTHERLY LOVE, COEXIST, RIGHT, WRONG, DECIDE FOR YOURSELF, STANDARDS, TRUTH, ABSOLUTE TRUTH, NEUTRAL, ABORTION, MARRIAGE, SUBJECTIVE STANDARDS, OBJECTIVE STANDARDS, INTERNAL STANDARDS, EXTERNAL STANDARDS, LOVE, JUDGING, INTOLERANT, DISAGREE, HATE, DOGMA, FUNDAMENTALIST

MORAL SKEPTICISM

Hi ya’ll! We have been having wonderful rain here. I love to see the woods come alive with all the moisture. It’s such a blessing. It is peaceful and very calm to walk in the forest and smell the wet undergrowth and see so many plants and flowers appearing. 
Speaking of peace I realized I forgot to write about the moral skeptic. Moral skepticism appears to promote peace and brotherly love. Perhaps you have seen the universal bumper sticker coexist with each letter a symbol for a different religion. Moral skepticism deals with relativism and the real message behind this sticker is not that all religions should just get along, but that they are all equally true. This is an impossibility. How can Allah and Jesus both be

god/God? 
What relativism does is allow a person to avoid moral judgements. Often these people appear thoughtful, nonjudgmental, and neutral because they say right and wrong are things people should decide for themselves. This is the root idea behind moral skepticism. So from their point of view, someone who holds to absolute truths--Jesus is the only way; a “choice” is really a baby; marriage is between one man and one woman--is an enemy of peace even though Jesus brought peace between God and man and between mankind….but not at the expense of truth. Truth often involves making hard decisions and choosing a side--something relativists do not want, like, and avoid. Relativism is quite seductive because it hides in plain sight. It seems tolerant, inclusive, and plays to the public’s emotions and sense of morality, so its inherent self-defeating nature slips by unnoticed. The probing question to confront these people with is “What is your standard for right and wrong?” With a simple followup question of why?”. The point is to make the skeptic aware that he/she is not really neutral. 
For example the skeptic might say in answer to your viewpoint that abortion is wrong, “I think people should respect each other’s opinions.” You can answer “Why, is it wrong not to do that?” Most likely they will will be shocked an say, “Of course it is.” Then you can ask, “What’s your standard for right and wrong.” You will probably hear an answer similar to, “Myself; my heart; I do what I feel is right; etc.” That’s the catch….you see they are imposing on you what they feel is right, but if they actually did respect your opinion, you would be free to do what you feel is right with out criticism. Here the skeptic attempts to be morally neutral by saying that all opinions should be equally respected, yet he/she goes on to say that your opinion is wrong. Similarly, if they say God is not good or kind or He wouldn’t send any one to hell, you can ask the probing question. They will probably answer something like, “I know in my heart it’s true.” You can then inform them of their not so neutral opinion by asking, “So, you think God should do what you feel is right? What if other people feel differently? Who should God follow?” In this case, the skeptic objects to God’s standards but then he/she plays God by judging God by his/her own standard. 
In both cases, you have made the skeptic aware that they are not as neutral as they believe. Because exposing the flaws of moral objections relies greatly on turning the skeptic’s words against them, be careful not to be confrontational. A way to avoid that is to say, “What I hear you saying is…”
It is good with all skeptics to clarify red flag words. Truth is the biggest for the moral skeptic. What they mean is what ever is true for me goes. This is subjective truth. Moral skeptics attempt to use internal (subjective) preferences as the standard for deciding truth in the external world. For example, the skeptic may believe gummy worms are the best candy ever. To the skeptic it is true as far as  taste (internal) goes, but everything else about gummy worms, their shape, size, color, texture, etc., is external. Beliefs can contradict each other but not physical, external evidence. We need to look for the reality (outside evidence) to shed light on moral decisions. Objective truth on the other hand, does not take into consideration anyones feelings or beliefs. Objective truths are proven true when external reality backs them up no matter what our opinion of them is. Whatever is real is true.
Here are a few red flag words to watch out for:
Should(n’t): the skeptic means conforming to his or her idea of right or wrong. Example; Christians shouldn’t talk about absolute truths. The skeptic’s personal goal is to escape the word should or ought so he/she can avoid moral absolutes and behave any way they choose. What they really believe is that “should” should apply to everyone but him/herself.
Love: the skeptic means affection toward another that makes both parties feel good. The highest form of love is agape and isn’t based on feelings. Instead it desires the greatest good for another person regardless of how it makes them feel. Tough love is unpopular because it initiates growth, which can be uncomfortable.
Judging: they mean being judgmental; unable to accept an idea or person who is different from the one doing the judging. But the moral relativist’s charge that others are “judging” him or her for merely opposing his ideas is in itself a judgement!
Intolerant: their meaning is disagreeing with their point of view. When these people labels  someone as being “intolerant”, they miss the fact that disagreement is the basis of true tolerance. You are expressing true tolerance when a person disagrees with your point of view, yet respects that person’s right to express it. You can always ask them, “why are you being intolerant of of my alleged intolerance?” They get intolerance and disagreement mixed up.
Hate: the skeptic means speaking against a person’s right to do what they want to do. Mere disagreement doesn’t rise to the level of hate. As with intolerance, the skeptic who declares that you are preaching “hate” or “hate speech” mischaracterizes your opposition to an idea as being opposition to the person expressing the idea. 
Dogma: they mean unbending, narrow thoughts about the world that “fundamentalists” believe because their sacred book says so. Today dogma is associated with someone who is certain about their beliefs. Skeptics often complain that Christians “force their beliefs down other people’s throats,” but sometimes even when a gentle manner is used to deliver truth, it can be hard to swallow. 
Fundamentalist: the skeptic means someone who gives easy answers to difficult questions; someone who is certain about their beliefs. Today fundamentalist denotes someone who is too closed-minded to consider other views. To be certain about one’s view is to be uneducated and dangerous. Often a fundamentalist is judged according to the certainty with which they hold their beliefs, not according to the substance of those beliefs. Point out the irony that if he or she is so certain about you being a fundamentalist, then according to his own criteria, he too is a fundamentalist.
There are other red flag words too but these are the most common. A relativist’s (moral skeptic) argument stands or falls on his or her ability to reshape words. So our ability to clarify words is the key to defusing relativism.
The moral skeptic preaches against absolutes and judgments but they must use absolutes and judgments to determine that not using them is better. What they don’t see is that relativism is enslaving, not liberating. If everyone decides for themselves what is right or wrong, standards will eventually conflict and chaos will follow. If all standards are equal, then who decides what is right? The only alternative is that  those with the most power will decide. A relativistic world is ultimately governed by one absolute principle--might determines right. And that’s what Hitler believed

This week in the night skies:For the northern hemisphere"Look northeast as the stars come out for W-shaped Cassiopeia. It's still not as high as the Big Dipper is in the northwest, but the two are on their way to their dusk balance point week by week.1
For the southern lats"on the evening of Monday 4 August Saturn is occulted by the Moon as seen from the most of Australia. This is the third and best of these rare occultations, it is under reasonable dark skies, with Saturn slipping behind the dark limb of the Last Quarter Moon. Saturn reappears while the Moon is still reasonably high.2 

References:
Foster, Bill. “Meet the Skeptic, A Field Guide to Faith Conversations.” Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2012. Pp 57-82.
1.http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/weeks-sky-glance-august-1-9/
2.http://astroblogger.blogspot.com



Monday, July 28, 2014

MILLER-UREK EXPERIMENT, STANLEY MILLER, OPALINE, HAROLD UREY, 1953, UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO, LIFE FROM NON-LIFE, ABIOGENSIS, SPONTANEOUS GENERATION, AMINO ACIDS, BUILDING BLOCKS OF LIFE, LEFT HANDED AMINO ACIDS, PROTEIN, OXYGEN, METHANE, EARLY EARTH ATOMOSPHERE

THE MILLER-UREK EXPERIMENT 

Hello everyone! How are all of you doing? We are well here, working our way through the hot and stormy summer months. One of the activities I do is teach the youth at my church creation science. The subject of the famous Miller-Urey experiment came up and so I want to enlighten all of you the same as I informed my students about this experiment. 

Some of you may remember mention of this experiment in your science classes in regards to “proof” that amino acids--the building blocks of life--had been generated from this experiment. But for those of you who don’t remember let me refresh your minds…

In 1953 Harold Urey an advisor from the University of Chicago, and his 23 year old graduate student Stanley Miller, conducted what became a famous  biochemistry experiment. “The Miller-Urey experiments involved filling a sealed glass apparatus with the gases that Opaline (a Russian scientist) had speculated were necessary to form life—namely methane, ammonia and hydrogen (to mimic the conditions that they thought were in the early atmosphere) and water vapor (to simulate the ocean). Next, while a heating coil kept the water boiling, they struck the gases in the flask with a high-voltage (60,000 volts-an excessive energy input) tungsten spark-discharge device to simulate lightning. Below this was a water-cooled condenser that cooled and condensed the mixture, allowing it to fall into a water trap below.”1





But this begs the very logical question of how did Miller know what the atmosphere was like billions of years ago? It is easy to see that Miller assumed the early earth’s atmosphere was different from today. He based his starting chemical mixture on the belief that the early earth had an atmosphere that contains no free oxygen. Why? Because it is well known in the field of science that biological molecules (specifically amino acid bonds) are destroyed in the presence of oxygen, making it impossible for life to evolve. Oxygen is a poisonous gas that oxidizes organic and inorganic materials here on earth. It would be lethal to any organisms that has no protection against it. So unless protection against oxygen “evolved” the same time that the amino acids formed, the bonds would have been immediately broken. Therefore, in order to avoid this problem, evolutionists, including Opaline, Urey and Miller,  propose that earth’s first atmosphere did not contain any freestanding oxygen. But is there any evidence at all to support this, or is it all based on the assumption that evolution must be true? No, there isn’t any evidence. There is no proof that
Earth ever had a non-oxygen atmosphere. As a matter of fact, earth’s oldest rocks contain evidence of being formed in an oxygen rich atmosphere. Recent literature suggests there is far more oxygen in the early atmosphere than anyone imagined. H-m-m….this is the first problem with Miller’s experiment. Lets go on….

“Within a few days, the water and gas mix produced a pink stain on the sides of the flask trap. As the experiment progressed and the chemical products accumulated, the stain turned deep red, then turbid. After a week, the researchers analyzed the substances in the U-shaped water trap used to collect the reaction products. The primary substances in the gaseous phase were carbon monoxide (CO) and nitrogen (N2). The dominant solid material was an insoluble toxic carcinogenic mixture called ‘tar’ or ‘resin’, a common product in organic reactions, including burning tobacco.”2 This is the second problem; and intelligent being altered the process. In later experiments Miller removed the tar because he knew nothing could survive in this cancer producing mixture.

But in the first experiment the tar was analyzed by chromatographic techniques that revealed a number of substances had been produced. However no amino acids were detected during this first attempt, so Miller modified the experiment (removed the carcinogenic) and tried again. “In time, trace amounts of several of the simplest biologically useful amino acids were formed—mostly glycine and alanine. The yield of glycine was a mere 1.05%, of alanine only 0.75% and the next most common amino acid produced amounted to only 0.026% of the total—so small as to be largely insignificant. In Miller’s words, ‘The total yield was small for the energy expended.’ The side group for glycine is a lone hydrogen and for alanine, a simple methyl (-CH3) group. 
“Miller was attempting to illustrate how life’s building blocks (amino acids) could have formed by natural processes. However, throughout the experiment Miller relied on years of intelligent research in chemistry. He purposely chose which gases to include and which to exclude. Next, he had to isolate the biochemicals (amino acids) from the environment he had created them in because it would have destroyed them. No such system would have existed on the so-called primitive earth. It appears Miller used intelligent design throughout the experiment rather than chance processes.”3 Problem number two continues.

In subsequent experiments Miller was able to produce amino acids. However, “producing amino acids is not the hard part. The difficult part is getting the right type and organization of amino acids. There are over 2,000 types of amino acids, but only 20 are used in life. Furthermore, the atoms that make up each amino acid are assembled in two basic shapes. These are known as left-handed and right-handed. Interestingly, all amino acids that make up proteins in living organisms are 100 percent left-handed. Right-handed amino acids are never found in proteins. If a protein were assembled with just one right-handed amino acid, the protein’s function would be totally lost. As one PhD chemist has said: Life requires polymers with all building blocks having the same ‘handedness’—proteins have only ‘left-handed’ amino acids. . . . But ordinary undirected chemistry, as is the hypothetical primordial soup, would produce equal mixtures of left- and right-handed molecules.”4  And a
introductory chemistry textbook has written in it: “All the proteins that have been investigated, obtained from animals and from plants from higher organisms and from very simple organisms—bacteria, molds, even viruses—are found to have been made of L-amino [left-handed] acids.”5 This is the third problem Miller came up with, the wrong results.

But could there be a chance, however slim, that life could evolve from non-life? “What have scientists calculated the probability of an average-size protein occurring naturally to be? Walter Bradley, PhD, materials science, and Charles Thaxton, PhD, chemistry, calculated that the probability of amino acids forming into a protein is: 4.9 x 10191. This is well beyond the laws of probability [chance] (1x1050), and a protein is not even close to becoming a complete living cell. No matter how large the environment one considers, life cannot have had a random beginning. . . . There are about two thousand enzymes, and the chance of obtaining them all in a random trial is only one part in (1020)2000 = 1040,000, an outrageously small probability that could not be faced (obtained) even if the whole universe consisted of organic soup.”6

Sadly, despite the fact that the Miller experiment did not succeed by producing only left-handed amino acids (the building blocks of life), textbooks that teach our children continue to promote the idea that life could have originated by natural processes (from non-life). “For example, the following statement from a biology textbook misleads students into thinking Miller succeeded: By re-creating the early atmosphere (ammonia, water, hydrogen and methane) and passing an electric spark (lightning) through the mixture, Miller and Urey proved that organic matter such as amino acids could have formed spontaneously. First, note the word proved. Miller and Urey proved nothing except that life’s building blocks could not form in such conditions. Second, the textbook completely ignores other evidence, which shows that the atmosphere always contained oxygen. Third, the textbook ignores the fact that Miller got the wrong type of amino acids—a mixture of left- and right-handed. The Miller experiment (and all experiments since then) failed to produce even a single biological protein by purely naturalistic processes. Only God could have begun life.”7
One other thing I would like to point out. “If we were to grant the evolutionists’ assumption of no oxygen in the original atmosphere, another fatal problem arises. Since the ozone is made of oxygen, it would not exist; and the ultraviolet rays from the sun would destroy any biological molecules. This presents a no-win situation for the evolution model. If there was oxygen, life could not start. If there was no oxygen, life could not start.”8 Problem number four. Wouldn’t that be great to see this information in our public schools!

Until next time,
Willow Dressel

This week in the night skies; for the northern hemisphere; “Friday, August 1. At dusk this evening, the Moon forms the lower-right end of a very long, curving line of celestial objects. Counting to the Moon's upper left, these are Spica, Mars, and Saturn. This day is Lammas Day or Lughnasadh, one of the four traditional "cross-quarter" days midway between the solstices and equinoxes. More or less. The actual midpoint between the June solstice and the September equinox this year comes at 2:40 a.m. August 7th Eastern Daylight Time (6:40 UT). That will be the exact midpoint of astronomical summer.”9

For the southern lats; “The Southern Delta-Aquarids meteor shower runs from from 12 July to 23rd August, peaking on Wednesday July the 30th. The number of meteors you will see depends on how high the radiant is above the horizon, and how dark your sky is. This shower is fairly faint, with the highest rate of around a meteor every 4 minutes.”10 

References:


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

RAPID GROWTH DINOSAUR, ROBERT BAKKER, WARM BLOODED DINOSAURS, DRAGONS, JUVENILE DINOSAUR, DINOSAUR EGG

DOES THE DINOSAUR FIT THE SIZE?

Hi there to all you good people out there! I’ve sure had some hectic days this week, but even so, I was able to spend some quality time with our precious Lord Jesus. It’s awesome that He’s so big He has the time and room for everyone!

Speaking of large sizes, did you ever wonder how the young of the large dinosaur (dragon) kind ever reached their full size with so many predators? After all, even a small--lets say a sheep or
 
 

horse size--T. rex would be just a nice snack for a full grown, adult Allosaurus. But all the large dinos were once very small, like when they first hatched and shortly there after. Certainly many of the young did succumb to predators. “Many reptiles grow throughout their lifetimes, gradually tapering off with age. An example is the Nile crocodile, the largest of the living reptiles. Some mammals, such as elephants, also grow slowly throughout their lives. The largest dinosaur fossils, therefore, may be from creatures that had lived for centuries.”1 But how did the hatchlings ever survive years of development to finally outgrow the large carnivores? You might be surprised…

“Two evidences suggest a rapid early growth rate for the dinosaurs. First, few half-grown dinosaur fossils have been found. Thus, dinosaurs may have rapidly passed through their juvenile phases. It may also be that specimens having smaller, fragile bones simply did not often survive the burial and fossilization process. Second, dinosaur bone texture, especially for the stegosaurs, shows evidence of rapid youthful growth. Robert Bakker (a paleontologist) estimates that stegosaurs may have grown from an egg to five tons in just one decade (Bakker, 1986)...In general, large dinosaur size also provided defense against attack from smaller foes. In the animal world there is a measure of safety in large size. Predators rarely attack something that is big an strong enough to injure them.”2 It seems God had provided for survival of the large dinosaurs by coding their DNA for rapid juvenile growth.

In addition to that, there is the very real problem of weight vs. volume. For example an animal whose size is doubled (2[length, height, and width]), will only have its bone strength increase about 3/2nd of that (22) because the bone’s supporting strength depends on the cross-sectional area.  So, “Animals much larger than the dinosaurs would require bones too bulky to be practical. Notice that bone size must increase substantially out of proportion to animal size. King Kong and Godzilla can exist only in movies--not in the real world. The same area-volume reasoning also limits the
possible size of trees. Perhaps you have seen the wide trunk needed to support a 350-foot redwood tree.”3

God has thought of every detail so get out there and enjoy His wonderful world!
God bless and take care!
Willow Dressel

This week in the night skies; for the northern lats; “Summer is hardly more than a third over, astronomically speaking. But already the Great Square of Pegasus, symbol of the coming fall, heaves up from behind the east-northeast horizon at dusk and climbs higher in the east through the evening. It's balancing on one corner.”4 

And for the southern lats;  “Comet C/2014 E2 Jacques is bright enough (magnitude 6) to potentially be seen in binoculars, but it is low to the horizon, and the rapidly brightening sky this week soon overwhelms it. Look to the left of the bright star Elnath (the tip of the horn of Taurus the Bull) with strong binoculars (at least 10x50's) for a fuzzy dot in the very early twilight. The New Moon is Sunday July 27. Jupiter is lost in the twilight. Mars and Saturn are prominent in the evening sky. Venus is prominent in the morning sky. The crescent Moon is close to Venus on the 25th, and Mercury on the 26th.”5


References:
1-3DeYoung, Don, PhD. Why Were Dinosaurs so Large? Creation Matters, Volume 19, Number 3, May/June 2014,p 5.

Monday, July 14, 2014

RAINBOWS, SUN DOGS, SUNDOGS, REFRACTION, REFLECTION, RAINDROPS, PRISM

RAINBOWS  AND  SUN DOGS

Hello all my fine friends out there!

How has your week been? We had some mighty thunderstorms here with a lot of great lighting displays. And it has been and answer to many peoples prayer for rain! Then after the rain often there are rainbows! I always love to see rainbows against dark thundery skies, don’t you?


And speaking of rainbows….here are a few things you might not know….

It all has to do with angles. When the sun is lower in the sky (morning and afternoon) the light rays are more horizontal. And when these horizontal rays of sun hit a falling raindrop the light is bent (by refraction [the simple act of bending light]) in two ways. Light entering the upper area of a spherical raindrop bends, is reflected internally, then departs at a 138 degree deviation. This constitutes the red light  spectrum. When sun rays strike the lower end of a droplet, it two is bent by refraction, is reflected internally, then exits at an approximate 232 degree divergence. This is the violet end of the light spectrum. This prism action of each drop of rain water causes the dispersal of the component colors of white light (all the primary and secondary colors). So the light that leaves the drop of water, having been broken down into these two angles, forms the primary and secondary rainbows we often experience after thunderstorms. And that’s how rainbows are formed! 



So what is a sun dog? Sun dogs (also called ice halos or parhelia) are also formed from the prism effect. They are the sometimes colorful or white lights in the sky often making a halo at 22 degrees around the sun or moon. It is not the same as a rainbow because the refraction occurs from hexagonal (six-sided) ice crystals. Because hexagonal ice crystals compose the section of a 60 degree prism, they separate the colors of white light. Often you will see high intensity spots of light on the halo known as the parthelic arc. This occurs because “A portion of the ice crystals are flat hexagonal plates and they tend to orient themselves with flat side horizontal when falling through the air….when the sun is at the horizon, they (parthelic arcs) can appear to be slightly outside it (the halo 22 degree arc) at higher altitudes and will flare into a white tail leading away from the 22° halo. Under appropriate conditions the tail may extend far outward on the horizontal ‘parhelic circle’. This extension of the sun dogs is reflection from the vertical sides of the flat hexagonal ice crystals.”1 Sun dogs got their name from the Arctic people in the far north. Often when a parthelic arc is present it is so bright that the rest of the arch is overlooked, and often there are two parthelic arcs present. Thus they were referred to as sun dogs!

Both of these phenomena in the heavens declare the glory of God. In chapter nine of the book of Genesis, scripture documents that the rainbow is a symbol of Gods covenant to never again destroy the earth with a world wide flood. And both of these phenomena are highly organized reflecting God sense of an intelligent designer who creates all things with a sense of order (as opposed to an evolutionists explanation of random selection). One other thing I would like to point out in relation to God and rainbows. The Hebrew word used in Genesis nine of the Bible for bow is arch and is the same word utilized elsewhere as in “bow (arch) and arrow”. So not only did God give us his covenant or promise to not flood the planet again, but He also gave us a sign of His protection….the “arch/bow” of the rainbow.

May you look at rainbows with a deeper understanding from now on!
God bless and take care,
Willow Dressel

This week in the night skies; northern hemisphere; “Wednesday, July 16. If you have a dark enough sky, the Milky Way now forms a magnificent arch high across the whole eastern sky after nightfall is complete. It runs all the way from below Cassiopeia in the north-northeast, up and across Cygnus and the Summer Triangle in the east, and down past the spout of the Sagittarius Teapot in the south. Thursday, July 17. The Big Dipper, high in the northwest after dark, is beginning to turn around to "scoop up water" through the nights of summer and early fall.
The waning Moon, nearly at last quarter, rises around 11 or midnight and climbs high in the early-morning hours. Far in its background is Uranus, magnitude 5.8. Locate it with binoculars or a wide-field telescope. Friday, July 18. Last-quarter Moon (exact at 10:08 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, USA). The Moon rises around midnight tonight, shining in Pisces.
Early Saturday morning before dawn, the faint asteroid 611 Valeria will occult an 8.7-magnitude star in Pisces for observers along a track crossing northern Mexico, Texas, the Deep South (including the Atlanta area) and the Carolinas.”2 

In the southern hemisphere; “Saturn is high in the evening sky, and was at opposition on June 11th. Saturn is visible most of the night. Saturn is high enough from around 8 pm for decent telescopic observation and sets around 2:30 am.  Saturn is in Libra near the head of the constellation of the Scorpion and forms a line with the two brightest stars of Libra. Morning sky on Wednesday July 16 looking north-east from Adelaide at 6:30 am ACST.  Venus forms a triangle with the bright red stars Aldebaran and Betelgeuse. Mercury is at its closest with Venus. Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at equivalent local times….Venus was at its furthest distance from the Sun on the 23rd of March, and is slowly sinking towards the horizon. Venus is a clear gibbous Moon shape in a telescope. Venus forms a triangle with the bright red stars Aldebaran and Betelgeuse. During the week Venus comes closer to the horizon, and the rapidly climbing Mercury.”3

References:
O”Quinn, Jonathan, D.P.M., M.S., Creation Matters, Vo. 19 No 1, Jan/Feb 2014, pg. 9, produced by the Creation Research Society:
1http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/HBASE/atmos/halo22.html



Wednesday, July 9, 2014

ANTARTICA, VEGETATION, TREE STUMPS, SURVIVE DARK MONTHS


MYSTERY OF ANTARTICA VEGETATION




Hi guys!
This week is going to be just a short note as I am running behind again but I really want to get a little something out. So here’s some food for thought.

This article is from Creation Matters, Vo. 19 No 1, Jan/Feb 2014, pg. 9, produced by the Creation Research Society:

“Fossilized stumps of tropical trees show that Antarctica was once forested. A photo of a tree stump sticking out of the ice begins a report on LiveScience about “weird forests” that once sprouted in the land of the midnight sun. Leaf impressions and tests of carbon by the university of Kansas show that a mix of deciduous an evergreen trees one grew there. The stumps are estimated to be late Permian in age according to the evolutionary timescale (250 million year old). Researchers can examine the wood cell patterns under the microscope to try to resolve how trees grew without sun for half the year. 
In order fore forests to have grown on this now icy continent, evolutionists surmise that “Some 250 million years ago, during the late Permian and early Triassic, the world was a greenhouse, much hotter than it is today.”

What they are missing is that if a forest had survived for over 250 million years, there would be a lot more evidence of it that what we have found. And it still doesn’t answer how the vegetation survived year after year of 3 + months of almost total darkness.
But God could easily take care of that….

Take care and God bless!

Willow Dressel