Nothing But Genius:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son our Lord, who was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried...And I believe that same God worked by evolution.

All the Evidence You Need

Easy Proofs of Evolution:

The last couple of decades have seen many new and convincing proofs of evolution coming in from around the globe, including of course genetics and even recent fossil finds.   


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Proof of Evolution: Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs)

Need proof that God really worked by evolution?  Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs) are exactly that: irrefutable evidence that God working through evolution is what is the phenomenon responsible for the lion's share of what we see here biologically on planet earth.  Of course, the field of genetics has just exploded in the last twenty years.  It is difficult for even the dedicated scientist to follow all the information pouring out of laboratories around the globe.  So is it any wonder that these profound proofs have escaped the public debate until recently?The beauty of genetics is that it is largely mathematical.  There is a certain amount of ambiguity in interpretations of fossil findings, for example.  But with genetics naysayers are stopped dead in their tracks by the hard wall of numeric certainty.

Something that no one anticipated, least of all the Young Earth Creationists, was the frantic race and ensuing success in mapping the human genome.  The astonishing speed of this landmark event in human history left mankind with a complete set of DNA us humans.  We then could compare our genome to that of a mouse, another animal that had a nearly complete genome mapped.

This death blow to traditional creationism - I would argue that evolution is a kind of creation however - came from something Ancient Repetive Elements, or "Jumping Genes".  And, interestingly enough, it was a Christian who recently championed one of this new powerful genetically-based arguments in the public arena.  Francis Collins, head of the Human Genome Project, explained how these Ancient Repetitive Elements conclusively proved evolution in his bestselling book The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief.

To understand AREs, we have to do a little review first.  First of all, chromosomes are composed of many genes, which describe a certain individual trait or characteristic.  Secondly, we have to realize that genes do not normally butt up against each other:  there is generally substantial "space" between genes filled by so called "junk DNA".  Thus, junk DNA is not part of the genetic material of the chromosome.

Much of this junk DNA is composed of Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs).  These are very widespread in our DNA and Francis Collins estimates that almost of our genetic material is composed of Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs).  What are Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs)?  They are basically a set of instructions, or amino acids if you remember from you high school biology, that are copied and then inserted into a new spot in our genome.  This inadvertant copying usually occurs without any effect whatsoever on the organism. 

This "copy and insert" process explains why Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs) are sometimes called transposons or "Jumping Genes", because a copy of themselves literally jumps from one part of the gene to another. 

Now here is where Francis Collins points out that it gets really interesting: some of these Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs) become truncated, which basically means non-functional or damaged.  And truncated Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs) thus become a perfect marker to track our genetic history, a kind of bread crumb trail to our past.

This was exactly what researchers did when the compared the genomes of mouse and men:  they found that truncated a large number of AREs occur in the exact same spots in mouse and human DNA.  Many of the genes in mice and men and identical.  Scientists were actually able to find many cases where the same truncated Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs) lay in the same spot between two of the same genes.

Keep in mind that the human genome is composed of literally billions of amino acid sequences.  This forces a traditional or Young Earth creationist to assert that God inserted, when he created man and mouse, damaged amino acid sequences in the exact same spots in both organisms.  In fact, that is the only conclusion that a creationist could draw because the likelihood of Ancient Repetitive Elements (AREs) showing up in the exact same spots amoung billions of base pairs is SO unlikely.

Francis Collins basically asks the question, "Why would God that deceptive?"  After all, why would God make it look evolution had occurred if it really hadn't?  Well, of course, he didn't do either of those things.  God worked by evolution in creating this beautiful life and existence here on Planet Earth.

 

REFERENCES

The Language of God, Francis Collins, Free Press, 2006, p. 135-136.