Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

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Xanxus
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Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Xanxus » 2011-10-04 11:29am

I'm sure this argument has been severely debunked, but a creationist that I'm debating with brought it up. He used excerpts from a book called "In Six Days"(ha) by John F. Ashton

Two of the most basic laws in science is the first law of Thermodynamic that states energy is conserved or constant at all time. Energy, in whichever of its many forms, absolutely can be neither created nor destroyed. This rule ensures a dependable and predictable universe, whether for stars or for humans life. Energy conservation likely was established at the completion of the creation week. At this time the Creator ceased the input of energy into the physical universe from his infinite reserves. This fundamental energy law cannot be disobeyed like a man made-law. Only the creator has the power to lay His law aside, for examples with miracles.

(my favorite)
The second law describes unavoidable losses in any process whatsoever which involves the transfer of energy. The energy does not disappear, but some always becomes unavailable, often as unusable heat. Stated in another way, everything deteriorates, breaks down, and becomes less ordered with thermodynamics. This law is directly related to the Curse which was placed upon nature at the fall of mankind in Eden.

Energy conservation implies that the universe did not start up by itself. Energy decay further implies that the universe cannot last forever. Secular science has no satisfactory explanation for such laws of nature. These principles simply transcend natural science. Their origin is supernatural, which by definition does not require a long and confusing complication. Instead, these laws are entirely consistent with the biblical, six day creation.

excepts from “In Six Days” by John Ashton PHD


Anyone mind helping me find the flaws? Thanks in advance.

Samuel
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Re: Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Samuel » 2011-10-04 02:06pm

Energy, in whichever of its many forms, absolutely can be neither created nor destroyed. This rule ensures a dependable and predictable universe, whether for stars or for humans life. Energy conservation likely was established at the completion of the creation week. At this time the Creator ceased the input of energy into the physical universe from his infinite reserves. This fundamental energy law cannot be disobeyed like a man made-law. Only the creator has the power to lay His law aside, for examples with miracles.


e=mc2
Energy can be transformed into matter and vice versa. It is what happens in the heart of stars and is why the sun is a beacon of light, heat and firey atomic death for Earth.

Energy conservation implies that the universe did not start up by itself.


No, what it means is that the universe has had increasing entropy over time. It says nothing about the begining of the universe.

Energy decay further implies that the universe cannot last forever.


Even if the universe suffers a heat death, it will still exist. It will just be very boring and at maximum entropy.

Secular science has no satisfactory explanation for such laws of nature. These principles simply transcend natural science.


Given that these principles were discovered by "secular science" I'm going to have to disagree.

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Re: Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Number Theoretic » 2011-10-04 02:09pm

How does "There definitely is a supernatural explanation" follow from "Science has no satisfactory explanation for this"? Either mine or his logic is broken here.

And while it is true that conservation of energy prohibits creating anything ex nihilo in our universe, concluding from that, that the universe didn't start by itself is another point in his reasoning i don't get. Because conservation of energy is a property of our universe: how does it apply to anything outside of our universe?

Oh and maybe there is an explanation (or at least a hint of an explanation) for the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Some people link it to the arrow of time and the reason why the entropy of the universe increases (or seems to increase, since a decrase of the global entropy of the universe can never be observed. See this paper for details on this hypothesis).
Apparently, the Second Law and the Arrow of Time are connected somehow, but little is known on how this connetion looks like. Of course, this doesn't mean that there is any connection at all, because if that would be the case with anything that defies an obvious explanation, nobody would do science and we would know nothing.

Oh and i don't see the connection between the Second Law and the creation of the universe in 6 days either.

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Re: Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Samuel » 2011-10-04 05:57pm

How does "There definitely is a supernatural explanation" follow from "Science has no satisfactory explanation for this"? Either mine or his logic is broken here.


If there is no natural explanation and there is an explanation then it must be a supernatural explanation (if natural and supernatural are the only two categories).

I think you missed it because it was phrased poorly and the logic chain is based on false premises.

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Re: Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Number Theoretic » 2011-10-04 06:48pm

I see. Sounds, like "unknown" or "not yet known/explained" isn't a category in his mindset.

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Dave
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Re: Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Dave » 2011-10-04 09:02pm

Samuel wrote:e=mc2
Energy can be transformed into matter and vice versa. It is what happens in the heart of stars and is why the sun is a beacon of light, heat and firey atomic death for Earth.

OP's debater already technically covered this when he said:
Energy, in whichever of its many forms, absolutely can be neither created nor destroyed.


This rule ensures a dependable and predictable universe, whether for stars or for humans life.

This assumes that the laws of the universe were created for our benefit. This phenomenon is also adequately explained by the anthropic principle -- we managed to survive long enough to observe the universe, but that doesn't mean the universe was created for us. "Douglas Adams used the metaphor of a living puddle examining its own shape, since, to those living creatures, the universe may appear to fit them perfectly (while in fact, they simply fit the universe perfectly)." (wikipedia)


Secular science has no satisfactory explanation for such laws of nature. These principles simply transcend natural science. Their origin is supernatural, which by definition does not require a long and confusing complication.

If science cannot explain it, that doesn't mean that superstition can. One might as well say "I can't explain why the moon is round, and I don't believe anyone else can explain it, so I'm going to say it must be the Flying Spaghetti Monster making a dinner plate. And you can't prove me wrong."

Further, if you look closer, saying that "god did it" doesn't actually explain anything, it just ends the argument with a statement (without any proof, either). Saying that something happens because god did it doesn't actually tell you anything about how or why the event occurred. Science, crucially, goes on to make testable predictions about how the world will work in the future, which is very useful. The predictions can be disproven by having a prediction not come true, which is how you discover that a theory or law is wrong.

The "god did it" statement can be used to justify anything, and it tells you nothing about how something will behave in the future. If you say lightning happens because Zeus threw it, I don't actually know anything more about the composition or behavior of lightning strikes than I did before, nor can I guess where lightning will strike in the future. Nor can anyone disprove it was Zeus because you have to search every place in the heavens to find him.

This law is directly related to the Curse which was placed upon nature at the fall of mankind in Eden.
Occam's Razor strikes, saying that the Law works perfectly well enough without asserting that some supernatural being changed the entire makeup of the universe while he was having a temper tantrum.

Xanxus
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Re: Creationist using Laws of Thermodynamics

Postby Xanxus » 2011-10-04 10:30pm

So what I'm getting from the replies, so far, is that besides him using fallacious false dilemmas, the information is actually correct for the most part?


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