Intelligent Design, Part 2

God and DNA

By Jim Allen

Intelligent Design, The Series

The Master Designer
God and DNA
The Brain
Imagination and Kingdom Truths
Body and Soul

Part 1 in this series spoke briefly about the organic cell as one proof for Intelligent Design and that the universe, including all life, could only have come from God. Part 2 probes deeper into the living cell by taking a look at Deoxyribonucleic acid or DNA, the control center for cell activity. With the exception of blood cells, cells in living organisms contain DNA, the genetic blueprint for how to build the organism. Every cell in your body contains a complete set of assembly instructions unique to you, which is why "forensic DNA analysis" is so effective for putting people behind bars. DNA goes beyond "just amazing" and is the "shining star" performing wondrous feats within the arena of Intelligent Design.

High school biology teaches DNA is a chemical substance in the cell made from many smaller particles that join to form a flexible compound, becoming the control center for cell duplication. Most everyone has seen the familiar DNA molecule known as the double helix or twisted ladder. Scientist estimate that an entire DNA sequence in a human, known as genome, contains billions of DNA bases (chemical combinations) making up genetic code. Multiply the number of DNA bases times billions of cells in the human body and you begin to sense the enormity and complexity of Intelligent Design. Even more astounding, God has crafted these cells to such a level of complexity and operational precision that they will interact and communicate with each other in perfect unison for years-on-end.

The Governing Authority

DNA is complex stuff and controls what happens in the cell. As a result, we can draw a loose comparison between the purpose of DNA in a cell and that of a program in a computer. A computer program has rules for starting, stopping, and interacting with data and user. The program follows a precise set of rules to ensure it stays within its operational boundaries to achieve the desire outcome, a happy PC user no less. When the program or user fails to follow a rule, for whatever reason, the dreaded error message pops up. So then and in this way, rules are important in a program to keep things working as designed. Likewise, rules in DNA are also important to keep the cell working as designed.

As recently as 1983, scientist learned some genes in cells only trigger things to happen in other genes in other cells and not in themselves. In other words, the purpose of some genes is to control other genes in other cells, like rules in a program control what the user can do. One example is the "growth gene" that, at the appropriate time, sends a message to cells in the organism instructing them to stop duplicating. If it were not for the rules in growth genes to control cellular development, growth would continue unabated producing abnormality. The genes (rules) in DNA are troublesome for antagonists of Intelligent Design because they (the antagonists) find themselves unable to answer: Who or what designed the strict set of complex rules that would govern cell function, to which of the gene bases would the rules apply, and under what conditions would the rules be enforced? Since DNA rules controlling cell function are extremely multifaceted, it is highly improbable these rules evolved from undirected natural processes.

Life Comes from Life

Those who rail at the idea of Intelligent Design would have you believe humanity is nothing more than a life form equal to other life forms having evolved from warm, primordial slime. People embracing the lesser view of humanity place little value on human life, such as abortion of the unborn. The Bible has a different view, a right view, a view declaring "life comes from life" and that man is God's crowning creation (Genesis 1:26). The Bible also says God is the governing authority in the universe and has given man precedence over all life forms (Genesis 1:26).

Ninety-nine percent of all cells in your body have DNA that monitors cell activity. When you multiply the "monitoring activity" of a single cell by the estimated number of human cells (estimated at one trillion), you get a passing glimpse of the enormity and complexity of these cells working in flawless unison for the single purpose of sustaining life. Even more astounding is the trillion-cell body is able to work continuously and in absolute harmony year-after-year for up to one-hundred years without faltering. This is a true marvel of God's divine intelligence! So then, our response to the wonder of Intelligent Design can only be,"I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knows right well (Psalm 139:14).

Image Credit: Richard IJzermans; "Visual DNA, Naturalis Museum, Leiden, The Netherlands"; Creative Commons

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Published 6-28-12