On 16 June, 2008, Scientific American web site carried a report titled “Were Meteorites the Origin of Life on Earth?” The article in question reported the results of chemical analyses performed on the Murchison meteorite that fell to earth in Australia in 1969. A team led by Zita Martins, an astrobiologist from Imperial College in London, identified certain organic compounds in the meteorite, which contribute to the production of DNA and RNA and are known as “nucleobases.”
Scientific American reported that this research, published in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters, had determined the first example of genetic material beyond Earth, and suggested that the finding would shed light on the subject of evolution.
The fact is, however, that the research in question sheds light on nothing at all apart from the dogmatic stance of Scientific American itself. Evolutionists have for years espoused the myth that life on earth developed spontaneously from a primordial prebiotic soup; however, when the scientific impossibility of this was exposed they resorted to talking about space as a tactic designed to cover up the hopeless position in which they found themselves. They are now attempting to deceive the public by sleight of hand laced with expressions along the lines of the “secret of evolution” lying in the boundless darkness of space. In other words, they are merely resorting to the same old demagogic tactics and attempting to give the impression that evolution might have developed with the help of molecules in space.
But these accounts contain not the slightest scientific evidence. And such stale Darwinist demagoguery no longer has the same impact on people that Darwinists hope for.
But what are these compounds identified by Martins’ team, that in fact contribute nothing at all to the idea of evolution?
The organic compounds discovered by Martins’ team are the nucleobases “xanthine” and “uracil.” Xanthine is a metabolic product and an antecedent of uric acid. It is found in the structure of RNA and plays a role in RNA’s chemical processes (RNA is a nucleotide chain existing in various forms and that plays a major role in the synthesis of cellular protein). Uracil is one of the bases constituting RNA.
Researchers investigating whether or not xanthine and uracil combined together as a result of coming into contact with the earth after the meteorite had landed examined the isotopes of these nucleobases’ carbon atoms (isotope: the various forms of an element based on differing numbers of neutrons in the nucleus though the number o protons remains the same). The carbon isotopes investigated belonged to Carbon 13, Carbon 12 being the commonest form of the element on Earth, and this heightened the possibility that organic compounds could have travelled to Earth with the meteorite. However, this information regarding the arrival of compounds from space certainly does not mean that a living thing spontaneously emerged from them.
The existence of its building blocks does not mean that life emerged by chance
The fundamental deception apparent in Scientific American is the illogical idea that “the meteorite contains the necessary genetic material for life, and life must therefore have begun spontaneously with the help of molecules from space.”
In order to see how false this is, let us imagine the construction of a building. Let us assume that the skeleton is largely complete and that the bricks for the walls are currently being laid. Let us also imagine that the bricks for the walls have been placed together in large heaps.
There is clearly no basis for saying “the building blocks are all present, so the building itself must have risen spontaneously, in a manner we are as yet unable to understand, as a result of these blocks combining together in some way.” It is just as nonsensical for evolutionists to point to the presence in the meteorite of certain organic molecules and claim that “this means that the first cell emerged through the spontaneous combination of molecules from space.
There is an extraordinary gulf between these molecules and what we refer to as “life,” and this totally invalidates all evolutionist scenarios
There is a huge difference in terms of functional complexity between organic compounds in a meteorite and “life.” Tens of thousands of proteins inside the living cell – most of which combine together in such a way as to constitute larger and more complex molecular machines – both make up the structure of the cell itself and also, in an example of perfect harmony and co-ordination, contribute to functions essential for life. The information regarding all these biochemical processes is stored, in absolutely vast quantities and using a special code, in DNA. What makes it impossible for such mechanisms, every stage of which points to a sublime intelligence and planning, to come about by chance is the way they constitute inter-related and mutually dependent hierarchical systems, with the integral complexity they display completely refuting the idea of blind coincidence on which the theory of evolution is based. DNA and proteins must enter the picture at exactly the same time if cellular machines are to function. There is absolutely no possibility of both DNA and even a single protein forming by chance. Even if they were to co-exist, they would still serve no purpose in the absence of the cell membrane. And even if the cell membrane exists, the cellular machines will still not work in the absence of the genetic code… The list goes on for ever. Each one of the stages we have cited is by itself a mathematical impossibility, and modern science shows that there is absolutely no chance of a cell forming by chance.
These details have been described in order to show the impossibility of the complexity involved in the cell emerging by chance. But the crucial issue is this: Darwinists have to date been unable to manufacture a single protein. They have failed to obtain even a single functional protein, even under laboratory conditions with all the necessary building blocks and amino acids that constitute proteins ready to hand. This makes the possibility of a single protein forming by chance in the natural environment crystal clear. That possibility has in fact been calculated and the chances of an average protein in a human cell forming by chance has been determined as 1 in 10950. That probability is mathematically “zero.” In the face of this, the evolutionist claim that “we have found the building blocks, so we can also now account for the first cell,” is obviously specious and intended to deceive.
Compared with the extraordinary complexity of the cell, the molecules discovered by Martins and her team clearly constitute no evidence by themselves for evolutionist scenarios.
Paul Davies, an astronomer and also an evolutionist, is one who believes that the presence of the building blocks of life in the meteorite cannot be regarded as evidence for the idea of evolution. Referring to an earlier evolutionist claim, he sets out the error of suggesting that life could have emerged in this way based on the discovery of amino acid in a meteorite:
… just as bricks alone don’t make a house, so it takes more than a random collection of amino acids to make life. Like house bricks, the building blocks of life have to be assembled in a very specific and exceedingly elaborate way before they have the desired function. [i]
Genetic material is meaningless in the absence of a genetic code
The nucleotides in DNA may be compared to the letters in this text. In the same way that these letters represent a means whereby the ideas in a mind can be transmitted, nucleotides constitute a means for encoding and transmitting the information essential for life. Nucleotides are analysed within the cell in groups of three, known as codons, and during protein synthesis a new amino acid is added to the chain for every codon.
But this comparison also implies the presence of a “mind” to interpret this “language.” In the absence of a mind to ascribe meaning to and interpret symbols, they will remain meaningless. For example, a Chinese character has a significance for someone who knows its meaning. But that symbol will mean nothing for people who do not know Chinese.
Similarly, the molecules making up DNA and RNA will have no meaning in the absence of a genetic code or, to put it another way, a “language of life,” determining which codon corresponds to which amino acid. Therefore, the scenario of the organic compounds present in the meteorite giving rise to the cell’s characteristic of genetic transmission is invalid because there is no genetic code anywhere.
The dilemma that the origin of the genetic code poses is not the kind of thing that can be glossed over in a couple of lines with a misleading, simplistic story as occurred in Scientific American. Although evolutionists seek to account for everything in terms of matter and chance, the genetic code goes far, far beyond these. In the words of the researcher Dean Overman:
"[t]he information contained in the genetic code, like all information or messages, is not made of matter ... The meaning is not a property of the arrangement of the symbols or alphabet of the code. The message or meaning in the genetic code is non-material and cannot be reduced to a physical or chemical property."[i]
Sir John Maddox, who edited the British scientific journal Nature in the 20th century, described the fact that “It is disappointing that the origin of the genetic code is still as obscure as the origin of life itself,” thus admitting the defeat of materialism in that area.[ii]
In short, there are no rational or scientific grounds to the claim that the organic compounds in the meteorite represent the beginning of the genetic code, and Martins’ hypothesis is nothing more than unscientific dogma.
The level of molecules in the meteorite fails to satisfy some leading evolutionists. One of these is the University of New York researcher and professor of chemistry Robert Shapiro, who says that because of their low concentration, extraterrestrial nucleobases were unlikely to have played much of a role in kick-starting life. "They"re a subunit of a subunit of DNA," he says.[iii]
On the other hand, evolutionists also disagree about the extent of the contribution of molecules from space to the supposed evolutionary beginnings of life. Conel Alexander, a geochemist from the Carnegie Institute in Washington expresses that uncertainty by saying we need to keep an open mind regarding the source and level of the molecules in question in the absence of greater data on the subject[iv]
This report in Scientific American is the latest example of the way in which Darwinist backing is so blindly given to evolutionist propaganda. The presence of organic compounds in the meteorite represents no evidence for the supposed evolution of life. With its complexity and the extraordinary amount of information it contains, life indicates the existence of a Supreme Creator. Life emerged, not through the chance combination of molecules from space, as Scientific American would have us believe, but by Almighty God commanding to “Be!” and creating it from nothing
[i]Davies P.C.W., "The Fifth Miracle: The Search for the Origin of Life," Penguin: Ringwood , Australia , 1998, pp.57-58
[ii] Dean L. Overman, "A Case Against Accident and Self-Organization" (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 1997
[iii] "The Genesis Code by Numbers," Nature , 367:111, Ocak 1994)
[iv] JR Minkel, Were Meteorites the Origin of Life on Earth?, June 16, 2008, http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=were-meteorites-the-origi
[v] . JR Minkel, Were Meteorites the Origin of Life on Earth?, June 16, 2008, http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=were-meteorites-the-origi