In August, Electronics Weekly, a UK trade journal, ran a front-page item on the ‘eye’ of the brittlestar (a kind of starfish), a network of calcite lenses distributed through its five arms.
The article on crustacean eyes (Creation 23(3):12-13) had an inset on the lens of the lobster eye, explaining how it could be used to focus x-rays. Seeing an opportunity to publicise Answers in Genesis, I wrote a letter with the internet link to the article, and a comment explaining a possible relevance to the semiconductor industry. The letter was published, and I pray it bears fruit in putting people in touch with your ministry.
Another good way of spreading creation truth is through books. In Britain, schools are usually grateful for donations of library books.
Your article about the Navajo code talkers (23(4):44-46) mentions that the whole idea came about because of a missionary. A few years ago, Ben Yazzie, a Navajo who had become a missionary to his own people after the war, spoke at our church.
During later conversation, it emerged that he had been a code talker—for our pastor’s Marine unit. Ben has since passed away, but his son, Ben Jr, has carried on his missions work on the Navajo reservation.
Lion down with the lamb
We cannot find anywhere in Scripture a description of the lion and the lamb, as illustrated on page 20 with Russell Grigg’s article (23(3):20-22). Many, many times we have heard this illustration used.
Isaiah 11:6 states (KJV) ‘the wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.’ Isaiah 65:25 says, ‘The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock …’.
Are we overlooking something? Or is this so common a misconception it has been accepted as fact?
TOM AND WIN WISE
New South Wales, Australia.
We would have preferred the picture to be of a wolf and a lamb, but the photo libraries were presumably influenced by, and seeking to illustrate, the common English lion/lamb idiom, which is only loosely based on the Biblical text, but is alliterative.
Since a lion and a lamb together at peace is consistent with the state of affairs in the Restoration, we were happy to use it, especially since our text nowhere referred to ‘the lion and the lamb’. Your letter is a useful reminder, though—Ed.
Jones on bones
Two responses to our review (Creation 23(4):10-14) of Professor Steve Jones’ book Almost like a Whale:
1. By far my favourite quotation from the Professor was in the Daily Telegraph (UK national newspaper) dated Wednesday 13 September 1995, p. 14: ‘The evidence for human evolution is, in fact, still extraordinarily weak (I look forward to seeing that quoted out of context). There are no more fossils than would cover a decent-sized table and we know almost nothing about what propelled a hairy and rather stupid ape into a bald and mildly intelligent human being.’
There is an expression for such belief in the face of only circumstantial evidence: blind faith. What a pity that faith, which rightly rests in our Creator, has been so misplaced.
2. I recently heard Professor Steve Jones speak at the University of Sydney. I was astounded at his ridiculing and very derogatory, hostile attacks on creation/creationists, which, sadly, drew roars of approval from the (largely student) crowd.
The group I was in left no room for discussion of any other point of view, and it made me appreciate so much more the unreasonable pressures and opposition—almost like terror tactics—that AiG staff have to face in trying to present the creation viewpoint.
I didn’t hear one proof or piece of evidence to justify Jones’ evolutionary belief, and I was astounded to hear him still use the peppered moth to support evolution [see Goodbye, peppered moths Creation 21(3):56].
New South Wales, Australia.
I read the short item ‘Blindingly obvious?’ (Creation 23(3):29). It describes a blind shrimp which lives in an Australian cave. It is said by the guides that it has ‘evolved the ability not to see’.
It occurred to me that the theory of evolution has evolved that ‘ability’ rather well too. Thank you for your very enjoyable and informative magazine.
In the article ‘Life from life … or not?’ (23(1):36-41), the author says: ‘Nowadays most scientists and teachers take a somewhat "schizophrenic" approach.’ Presumably the implication meant was that they seem to hold two minds on the matter. I would like to point out that, although popularly confused, schizophrenia is not multiple personality disorder. It may not seem like a big deal to make a distinction, but mental illness has such a stigma in the community already that it seems unfair to perpetuate fallacies about (in this case) schizophrenia.
The New Shorter Oxford Dictionary indicates that ‘schizophrenic’ and ‘schizophrenia’ may refer to not only the mental illness in question, but also to the holding of apparently conflicting opinions.
I suggest the illness was originally mislabelled, as the words come from Greek ones meaning ‘split mind’. We agree that this is not an appropriate way to describe a sufferer from this debilitating condition, and it is unfortunate that the use of the term in its correct sense now serves to perpetuate public misunderstanding of this disease—Ed.
The article on ‘Rape and Evolution’ had an overwhelming response, almost all positive. But two readers expressed concern that any article on that subject would not be suitable for a family magazine. When deciding to run it, we noted that the article was not really about rape, with no descriptions of any sort, let alone prurient or graphic, but merely used the issue as a teaching framework for powerfully demonstrating the bankruptcy of evolutionary thinking. We suggested to one of the complainants that they would not want the Bible (which also talks about the way the world really is, often far more graphically) censored from their children. Scripture does not glorify sin, but does not wrap it in cotton wool as our church culture sometimes tends to do. For what it’s worth, though, we don’t have any similar items in the pipeline.
Nancy Linnenberger of Colorado, USA, read our article on rapid cave growths in the Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine (23(3):44-46), and she and her husband then descended 300 m (1,000 ft) on a tour into the mine. However, they saw none of the formations shown in our photos. Their 83-year-old guide said he had been working there for many years, knew of no such formations, and said, holding his hands one foot apart, ‘Besides, it takes about 1,000 years to form something like that this long. Some people just tend to exaggerate.’
On reaching home, they phoned the mine for an explanation—they were told that the part of the mine described in our article was not open to the public, and yes, the formations did still exist there. Nancy wrote, ‘We will never know why the tour guide denied that the formations existed or could exist anywhere in the mine.’ Texan Sarah Bennett, who visited the same mine with her husband, was told (by a young mine guide) that the formations had ‘been removed’. She added, ‘We have toured many caves in Texas with groups of boys from our church and have noticed the stalactites under the handrails as we have walked through the caves. The boys have even questioned the tour guides about their message of "hundreds of years to form one inch", but they have been ignored many times. It is sad that evolutionists claim to be openminded yet they are really unwilling to explore other schools of thought.’
Danny Hopping from Florida, USA, was disappointed that we would publish something on reports of a living dinosaur in one region when it was only a ‘maybe’. We suggested that we had made it very clear that this was only a possibility. Many finds of animals previously unknown to science (e.g. the Nepalese giant mammoth-elephants—see ‘Lost world’ animals—found! Creation 19(1):10-13) were made only because someone followed through on eyewitness accounts. We think we therefore have a duty to publish, with appropriate caution, reports of any relevant eyewitness sightings unless from unreliable sources. Such reports also give a valid opportunity to tell people that finds with exactly the same significance as finding a live dinosaur (e.g. the ‘dinosaur tree’, Creation 17(2):13) have already occurred.
Millilitres, not miles
Several astute readers pointed out the fuel economy error in ref. 10 of the bird migration article (23(4):16-23). It should have read ‘0.33 ml per 100 km,’ rather than what it somehow mutated to, ‘0.33 miles per 100 km’. The non-metric equivalent of 720,000 miles per US gallon (from ref. 1, p. 11) was correct.
Some expressed concern about the ad <70 date for Revelation in our ‘AFK’ timeline, strongly defending the more usual date of ad 96. We were not trying to take sides in any eschatology debate. J.A.T. Robinson, in his Redating the New Testament, offered evidence that all the NT books were written earlier than previously believed, even though he, as a liberal, would be motivated to date them as long after the Gospel events as possible. Despite reservations about the Revelation date, in the end, we went with all of Robinson’s earlier dates as at least defensible. But we did say, and would point out again, that these dates were meant to be tentative.
Alaska’s Lisa Welch alerted us to the fact that the editorial Living (and eating) like a caveman? (23(3):6), referring to man’s permission to eat meat, said this was ‘after the Fall’, when the passage we cited, Genesis 9:3, says it was after the Flood. Though a sophist’s defence might be that our statement was inclusively true, it was an unintentional boo-boo that somehow got by all reviewers. It might account for the fact that the editorial was interpreted by some as an attack on vegetarianism, which it was not (see also ‘Eating out in Eden’ Creation 18(2):10-13).