Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels
A unique new book and DVD expose evolution’s fatal flaws
As part of a ground-breaking new project, in July 2014, CMI released a book called Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels (EAH). A 96-minute documentary of the same name subsequently premiered on 17 October. Using real science, the project aimed to highlight fatal flaws in what are the perceived ‘pillars’ of evolutionary theory.
From the beginning, co-producer Dr Robert Carter envisioned this project making a unique contribution to CMI’s range of resources. He says, “We are often responding to evolutionary claims and having to defend attacks on biblical creation. But I thought, ‘Why not move the ball into their court and challenge evolution’s most basic tenets?’ What we show is that the alleged strengths of evolution utterly fail at a foundational level.”
CEO and fellow co-producer Gary Bates explains, “Most people blindly accept these assumptions as being true because it is all they are ever taught. It’s very easy to convince someone of something when you only give them one side of the story. EAH is about correcting these half-truths.”
A groundbreaking book
CMI has more Ph.D. scientists than any other Christian ministry we know of. So Robert and Dr Carl Wieland selected seven subject areas that underpin evolutionism (Natural Selection, Genetics, the Origin of Life, the Fossil Record, the Geologic Record, Radiometric Dating, Cosmology), and added an eighth, the area of Ethics. They then chose Ph.D. scientists in the ministry who were well-qualified to submit chapters for the book. This high-quality paperback is printed in full colour with beautiful photographs and diagrams. It received an unprecedented reaction from creationists worldwide before it was even printed, with close to 2,000 pre-orders. Only days after it was released, positive feedback started pouring in. H.D. from Australia wrote:
“I just finished reading Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels and wish to congratulate the writers of this outstanding book. It is a comprehensive strike against the evolutionary paradigm, yet in a precise and concisely written manner.”
A massive collaboration
The EAH documentary was a challenge on a larger scale than any in-house project CMI has undertaken to date. Producers Gary Bates and Robert Carter flew a team to Australia to interview CMI scientists. They also brought in specialists from outside the ministry, as well as using previously-unseen footage from CMI’s last major documentary The Voyage That Shook the World. In total, 15 Ph.D. scientists from 7 countries appear in EAH.
Aside from presenting powerful arguments, they demonstrate that scientists can be Bible-believing Christians, who can do real science while rejecting evolution. For example, John Sanford, a retired professor from Cornell University, invented the biolistic gene gun that has been used in creating many genetically modified crops.1
Physicist and cosmologist John Hartnett designed the world’s most super-precise atomic clocks for use in satellites.2 And Horace Skipper developed several products for a major agriculture company and was head of faculty at an American university.3
Gary explains, “The average person tends to be intimidated by the evolutionary arguments of Ph.D. scientists, because who are we to judge the experts? This is why it is so effective to have creationist Ph.D. scientists exposing evolution’s fatal flaws. And these are people with doctorates from secular universities, just like their evolutionary colleagues. It also demonstrates that believing in evolution is not about the scientific evidence, because we’ve shown that science does not support it.”
For example, evolutionists must believe that simple chemicals somehow spontaneously formed themselves into complex molecules and eventually the first cell from which all life on earth evolved. But EAH uses stunning animations to show that everything we do know about science shows this to be impossible.
EAH also takes on cosmological evolution—the untenable idea that the universe came out of nothing. The scientists interviewed show that the big bang is fatally flawed and invokes concepts that are actually unscientific. For example, the ‘inflationary period’ has to begin for no reason, stop for no reason, and the inflation itself violates the known laws of physics. And to try to make today’s big bang model work, scientists have to say that 96% of the universe is composed of mysterious ‘dark matter’ and ‘dark energy’—entities which have never been observed.
Our hope is that this book and documentary will find their way into the hands of college students and other scientifically-minded young people. As Gary says, “By the time a teenager goes to college, they will have been exposed to hundreds of hours of evolutionary propaganda in school and via the media. It is vital that they hear the whole story, including the weaknesses of evolution and the creationist alternative.”
Because EAH covers many complex concepts, good illustrations are important to make the concepts understandable. In addition to the unused Voyage nature shots mentioned above, and purchasing stock footage, we engaged a professional 3D animator to create 25 brand-new animations of things such as DNA breakage and the nuclear decay that occurs within zircon crystals (if you don’t know why this is significant, read the book or watch the movie!).
A 45-minute science documentary can easily cost around $1.5 million. We strove for the quality of such a ‘big-budget’ production, but produced EAH for a fraction of that cost. One cost-saving measure was to do most of the work in-house, including the filming, recording, and editing of the documentary.
When the pre-release trailer appeared on YouTube, it attracted thousands of ‘dislikes’ after being mentioned on Richard Dawkins’s website. The producers saw this as a good thing: “It shows that people are paying attention to it. Hopefully, if their curiosity is piqued enough to watch it, they will be challenged when they hear real scientists blowing holes in their cherished belief system.”
One atheist blogger offered to pay for his readers to go to the world premiere in Atlanta, in return for providing a review of EAH for his website. That premiere was sold out, including some tables sponsored by donors for pastors to come and view the documentary. Attendees enjoyed a banquet dinner and heard from the producers about the project. EAH also had premieres in the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. The attendees were overwhelmingly positive about the documentary, and the film’s powerful closing Gospel presentation actually moved some to tears.
The documentary also received the Dove Foundation’s ‘Faith Friendly’ seal and highest ranking; the reviewer noted, “If we could award Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels more than five Doves, our best rating, we would! This is an intelligent and remarkable look at the holes in the theory of evolution”.
A humbling experience
Gary and Rob both stressed the vital importance of those who supported the EAH project at all stages of production. Gary said:
“It’s often very difficult to convey to our brothers and sisters in Christ just how much we need their support for projects like EAH. For example, the brilliant animations used in the film to convey some of the more difficult concepts would reasonably have cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. However, a very talented Christian animator worked sacrificially with us because he believed in the aims of the project. It still cost many thousands of dollars, but due to donor support we were able to look for such outstanding, professional outside help. Quite simply, without their generous support, EAH would never have seen the light of day.”
Other important contributors to the project were of course the scientists who wrote chapters for the book and appeared in the documentary. Robert said:
“Without the cooperation of my colleagues at CMI and the other scientists who gave their time to collaborate with us, this idea would never have become reality. I am amazed at the talent and dedication that so many put into producing Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels. Their participation helped make it a resource that I believe will have a huge impact in removing the evolutionary barriers to the Gospel for many.”
In short, we hope that this becomes a widely used tool for the advancement of the Gospel; that by showing the scientific and moral bankruptcy of evolution, it will make people more willing to listen to the real explanation of the universe—the Creator’s account in Genesis. Gary concluded, “It’s been a huge emotional investment for all of us. But finishing the project is actually just the beginning. Because we’ve taken the game to a new level, now watch the sparks fly!”
References and notes
- See creation.com/sanford. Return to text
- He is also a research professor at Adelaide University in South Australia; see creation.com/hartnett. Return to text
- Clemson University in South Carolina; see creation.com/skipper. Return to text
I have been one of the firsts to order a copy of EAH and I devoured it. There are no words to comment adequately the value and importance of such a piece of ART. I like scientific arguments particularly when they are emphasizing the Hand of our God and Creator and EAH has done its job. I made it to be read by my friends and they have been satisfied. Evolution is boasting from many secular pulpits, but God does have His weapons and EAH is one of them. Thank you CMI for your mission to counter the lie of evolution. May God bless you all! Thank you Gary Bates and Robert Carter.
Unless this movie is not made available for free, to few will see it and it will then miss it objective. I hope that this will happen.
Thanks for your email as it provides an opportunity to comment on the idea that everything should be free. Now I am not suggesting that you are claiming all of the points below but I will just cover all them while I am going so that it may be helpful to others also.
It is not just about money for sales. That’s not the point, although, obviously, it is simply not practical for any ministry to just give things away. Over the years, we have found that things provided freely are often received with no tangible value. The book and DVD were made possible by the faithful giving of our supporters. May I ask, did you financially support the production or are financially supporting your local CMI office so they can hit the road and disseminate such life-changing resources ?
On the whole, those same supporters have purchased multiple copies of same in an effort to give them to others. Just recently, I received an email from our New Zealand office about a gentleman that purchased 320 copies to give away. And if you look at the testimonies at the bottom of the article there has been high praise for the production. Producing high quality resources comes at a cost. But being high quality means that supporters are more likely to purchase it to give away with confidence. There are a few other things to consider, as follows:
Providing it free on YouTube, for example, does not guarantee success. If you subscribe to our newsletters, you recall the incredible amount of work we had to deal with when our trailers were copied by skeptics because we disabled comments on our trailers. Unfortunately, there is so much misinformation that gets attached to them they end up being an unsavoury source for people to visit, and thus, can be counterproductive. Being a faith funded ministry we simply do not have the resources to manage and edit such entries and it therefore can appear as if we cannot counter the claims. We could be on a lot more such platforms if we could afford the manpower to do so.
From time to time we do offer resources that people can freely copy, and indeed there are free books, hundreds of free videos on our site, and over 9,500 thousand free articles. We offer bulk discounts on all our resources for those that desire to distribute same. Did you inquire about bulk prices?
Of course this raises a bigger question of why isn’t everything free in Christendom? We are a faith funded ministry. That is, our supporters donate funds towards the efforts of producing information like EAH. No one expects a pastor to work for nothing? How are the utility bills paid on a church building? How would I as CEO be able to pay the salaries of those who produced that documentary? My point is that because we are a ministry that sells resources it does not mean that we are able to produce them for nothing and give them away. 1 Timothy 5:18 reminds us that "The laborer deserves his wages."
But most of all, and this is a major point I can vouch for from over 25 years in ministry. That is, just providing things for free does not automatically follow that people will read or watch them. If a Christian has invested something personally into the resource (i.e. purchased it), he is more likely to ensure a target recipient for same. And he is also in a position to follow up with that person to answer questions, whereas in a YouTube situation, the skeptic can merely retreat and feel comfort and reassurance from the uninformed comments that usually accompany anything listed on YT.
At some time in the future, it is possible that we might consider some sort of free circulation of this resource, but presently it is actually gaining a wide audience among believers and non-believers alike as Christians give legs to their faith to ensure a wide circulation.
So, I have taken the time to explain some of the reasoning as to why we have taken this route with EAH and I hope it will encourage you to get behind the work of CMI.
Before we open any book there are pre-conditions such as being able to read and reason. The ethics and morality section in EAH made me realize, if 'absolutes' are rejected, then questions become unreasonable and irrational. Questions about contradictions in God then become irrational because right and wrong are relative and becomes self-refuting opinions by the questioner which ultimately makes no sense without God being real and Who He is, being True! God is not just a God of Love (1 John 4:8), but also a God of Justice and Righteousness (Isaiah 30:18, Psalm 7:11). Which answers the question "Why a God of Love allows bad things to happen?" God sustains all things (Hebrews 1:3), which justifies the absolute principles of reason that science feeds on. Which answers the question "Why there is science?" Unfortunately the blind, who cannot justify these things but use fallacious special pleading or double standards, are leading the seeing in this world. Hopefully repeated use of resources such as EAH will allow the seeing to be lead by the Holy Spirit.
This article does not even begin to describe how immensely important the EAH project is. For any who have not received a copy of the book or DVD please do so immediately. I have watched the documentary 37 times! After viewing the product and seeing its incredible value I encourage all to get the materials and then share them with the world. We are engaging in a great controversy and we are on the winning side! Praise the Lord for the work of CMI and please allow them to be an encouragement. They have deeply encouraged me to continue studying science and the word of the Living Creator Jesus Christ.
Indeed, evolution's most basic tenets should be challenged.
For instance, the universe itself is dying. If evolution is true, why is it (evolution) being so benevolent to all of the inhabitants of the universe (by bestowing survival advantages to creatures, molecules, etc.), but this mystical evolutionary "power" doesn't demonstrate this same benevolence to the universe itself by making it become more alive with the passage of time. Instead, it, the universe is dying with the passage of time. Why? Because evolution is not true, but fallen-ness from a once-perfect creation is.
Without understanding the origin of life, it's impossible to understand the phenomenon of death.
Thanks Lita and the CMI crew for helping me understand these things.