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Does the Perot Museum of Nature & Science Argue Against the Existence of God?

Brad’s been at home sick the last couple days, which is why you’ve heard relatively little from him on FrontBurner. He did manage to crawl out of bed long enough yesterday to post about a fellow who’s been calling the Perot Museum’s exhibits “fairy tale propaganda.”

Brad sent this fellow, a “street preacher” named Jesse Morrell, several follow-up questions. Morrell has taken it upon himself to post his responses on his own website, so I’d like to address a couple of the highlights. He writes:

And for the Big Bang to be promoted as an argument against God, as the Perot Museum present it is itself a fallacious argument. Even if all of the universe existed in a single molecule that exploded, this does not necessarily exclude the existence of a Creator and Designer at all. They are trying to explain the “how” but the “how” does not necessarily exclude the “who” that was behind the “how.”

I don’t believe the museum is arguing against God’s existence by explaining the Big Bang theory, but other than that, I agree with this point. And I say that as someone who knows that evolution is as much a fact (not a theory) as anything in the realm of scientific knowledge is fact, and someone who doesn’t doubt that something along the lines of the Big Bang correctly explains the development of our universe.

But the “how” doesn’t necessarily exclude the “who.” I’d bet many of the people responsible for the creation of the Perot’s exhibits would agree with that sentiment as well.  If Morrell would only listen to his own point, he might not consider his religious faith so terribly under attack by the museum’s presentation of scientific knowledge and wouldn’t wrongly accuse them of pushing a purely atheistic agenda.

Brad asked him whether he considers only Christians who believe solely in Creationism as “rational” people. He basically says yes, and explains:

First, we know logically by law of cause and effect that anything that had a beginning had a cause. Anything finite had a beginning. Therefore, anything finite had a cause. Finite cause and effect necessarily implies the first cause. The first cause, by definition, must be self-existent. If the first cause had a cause, it wouldn’t be the first cause. Therefore, the existence of anything finite is absolute proof of the existence of the infinite. The finite could not exist apart from the infinite. Our finite existence is absolute proof that there is a Creator …

The existence of the Perot Museum itself is proof that there is a God. The Perot Museum had a beginning and is therefore finite. The existence of finite cause and infinite necessarily implies the first great and infinite cause. Therefore, the existence of the Perot Museum proves the existence of God. In the same way, the existence of an atheist and of any argument presented by an atheist against God, in fact, proves that there is a God.

This reminds me of a bit of rational reasoning that my best friend in seventh grade taught me.

1) God is love.

2) Love is blind.

3) Ray Charles is blind.

4) As Euclid taught us, things which are equal to the same thing are equal to one another.

5) Therefore, Ray Charles is God.

27 comments on “Does the Perot Museum of Nature & Science Argue Against the Existence of God?

  1. Did he also see Life of Pi and catch that story’s atheist message or was it too subtle for this idiot?

  2. If he can prove that creationism is viable using the scientific model(or does he think that the scientific model is just inherently atheistic?), and then get it peer reviewed to test itself. Then, I wouldn’t see why the ‘Perot Museum of Science’ would be against developing an exhibit to showcase his theory. The only hindrance to him, then, at this point is the scientific method……so get to it, Mr.Morrell! I’ll definitely purchase a ticket to the first days viewing of your work! Should be enlightening. :)

  3. First, The Perot Museum’s presentation on the Big Bang specifically mentioned and criticized “Creationists” by name. So my statement on the matter is correct. Secondly, you fail to distinguish between a logical syllogism and fallacious reasoning.

  4. You’ve just used the “gods of the gaps” fallacy, and have explained nothing at all. Your premise is bogus and we are all dumber now to have read it. Thank you and good day, sir. :)

  5. Every time I see someone use “fallacious” all I can think is that they think it’s penis related. I giggle. I become an 8 year old boy. Mr. Morrell up on his piney woods soapbox tossing out all the big words he can get from thesaurus.com to support his fantastical ridiculousness makes me giggle. Keep at it Lindale and God bless.

  6. He doesn’t have to prove creationism. The museum has the burden of proof since it is claiming to be founded upon science.

  7. If he can prove that creationism is viable using the scientific model(or does he think that the scientific model is just inherently atheistic?), and then get it peer reviewed to test itself. Then, I wouldn’t see why the ‘Perot Museum of Science’ would be against developing an exhibit to showcase his theory. The only hindrance to him, then, at this point is the scientific method……so get to it, Mr.Morrell! I’ll definitely purchase a ticket to the first days viewing of your work! Should be enlightening. :)
    Hey Bill,
    Jesse Morrell does not have to prove “creationism”. Even though he wrote an intelligent letter in response to the questions this museum gave him, he does not have to prove it. However, the museum holds the burden of proof since they are comparing evolution and big-bang “theories” to factual science. BY THE WAY EVERYBODY …..JESSE MORRELL DID RESPOND BACK AND FRONTBURNER IS BEING A COWARD BY NOT POSTING HIS REPSONSE. You can view the questions and lengthy anwers Jesse responded with on this website
    http://biblicaltruthresources.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/a-review-of-the-new-perot-sci-fi-museum-jesse-morrell/

    Enjoy people!!!

  8. So, Jesse has taken on astronomy and the laws of physics in science. I have acouple of questions for him though.
    Is he aware that science is tyhe study of the natural world and does not include magic?
    Does he have a science paper that can disprove evolution, the most heavily documented theory in scince, supported by mountains of evidence and facts, multiple lines of reasoning and scientific research?
    If he has such proof, he should write it down, submit it to a peer reviewed scince journal and collect his Nobel Prize.
    Does Jerry know that multiple mainstream denominational national councils have written statements critical of
    creationism and supportive of science education in evolution, modern geology, paleontology and the myriad other sciences Jerry feels threatened by?These staements are available for him to read at the NCSE website under church statements. Therefore Jerry’s brand of religion is apparently in conflict with mainstream Christianity in America today. No? THen what are these statements about at NCSE? They all support evolution and are from Lutheran, Mehtodist, Presbyterian, Catholic and Episcopalian National Councils speaking for the denominations.
    IF Jery’s objections are not even voiced by fellow Christians shouldn’t he be resolving those problems in church instead of by attacking fatcs, science and logic? He could go to the NCSE website and read about creationism, what it is, and why it simply is not scientific. Can Jerry defne a scientific theory, can he report the defintion of a scince theory? No, he can’t. So, what is Jerry attacking? Why is he afraid of science? The Old Testament is very clear. The earth is flat and rests on pillars. Has Jerry joined the flat earth society? Why isn’t he arguing that the earth is flat as the Old Testament says. Is he a YEC? In other words does he think Jesus fought the dinosaurs, that the Noahs Ark tale is literal and that the earth is 6000 years old? If so then his faith is threatened not by scince, but by logic, reason AND science. Too bad for Jerry and anyone who thinks hes on to something. Jerry’s claims have major scintific, denominational and legal problems. Can Jerry bring a talking sake fossil over to the museum for everyone to look at? How about a talking burning bush fossil or a PreCam,brian bunny rabbit fossil to disprove evolution? I’ll wait up at the dinosaur exhibit for Jerry to prove hes got some scince behind his claims.
    Otherwise, perhaps he might just enjoy the electricity, gasoline, staelitte communications, internet and food that scince has brought to him and shut up. Just sayin Jerry. No ones aftre your faith, believ whatever you want. Scince isn’t about beliefs its about evidence, and testing and proving. Say you’re not a cargo cultists Jerry , okay?
    Reality, try it out.!

  9. Ms. Martinez- We included a link to Mr. Morrell’s site, which includes the responses. How is that cowardly?

  10. Jesse’s bogus syllogism in a nut shell: “Major Premise: The existence of finite cause and effect” (i.e. every tangible thing that we observe in the universe) necessarily implies the great and infinite first cause (i.e. my highly specific magical deity found in my fictional sacred texts). “Minor Premise: The creation of the Perot Museum is an example of finite cause and effect” (i.e. it’s just something). “Conclusion: The existence of the Perot Museum” (i.e. a thing) implies the great and infinite first cause (i.e. my highly specific magical deity, ignoring any possible natural/impersonal first cause, even if my bogus major premise were true).

    Jesse has, in effect, made the argument that “everything” is proof of his magical Levantine deity found in bronze age myths. He as no actual evidence for this deity, so he instead plays games with nonsense syllogisms like this that he cooks up on his couch, rather than doing real research (the thing that the Perot museum actually does). Jesse is a former criminal with no education beyond high school, who merely has learned how to parrot a few cool sounding philosophical terms that he barrows from theologians who are likewise wrong (but slightly smarter) than he is. Jesse should be given as an example in a Philosophy 101 course about how never to do logic, and then the course can commence on real philosophy from there on out.

  11. Creationism, as I understand it, argues that science can prove that there is a God and that He created the universe. Then it argues that the existence of the universe itself is proof that God exists.
    This is a bit circular, no?
    It’s good theology. St. Thomas used it in one form or another. It might be good philosophy — I’ll leave that to the philosophers; they’ve been arguing it for centuries. But it is neither good science nor bad science; it’s just not science of any kind. It states a proposition that can neither be proved nor disproved by the scientific method, which relies on the accumulation and rigorous examination of physical evidence about the physical universe.
    There are scientists here and there who claim that science has disproved God, or at least rendered Him irrelevant. That’s a very unscientific claim.
    Finally, Mr. Morrell. Don’t equate Creationism with Christianity. One is bogus science. The other is faith in Jesus Christ prompted by Grace. You, as a preacher of the Gospel, should know that.

  12. Yeah, it’s nothing but begging the question. Making an unnecessary presupposition so that he can shoehorn his Mesopotamian fairy tale villain into it.

  13. Yes, I saw that you included a link to the answers in their entirety and really appreciate that

  14. Please do not mistake Brother Morrell’s complaints about the Perot Museum or his assertions about what Creationism does or does not prove as representative in any way of anything broader than a thin slice of an extreme band of believers. Most Christians have no problem believing that God created “all things visible and invisible,” in the words of the Creed and no problem t all with evolution and cosmology as they are currently understood by science.

  15. For starters, the observable finite could follow an unobservable infinite regress of finite causes. Some think that this intuitively unlikely, but there is no logical reason that it can’t exist. Assume, however, that there had to be a self-existant first cause. You beg the questions by assuming that this first cause can only be your Levantine deity invented thousands of years ago in mythical ancient texts. Even if there has to be a self-existent first cause, there is no reason to suppose that it cannot be a natural and impersonal phenomena. In fact, this is far more likely, since any personal thing that we can observe (namely, humans and animals) has always been finite and caused, whereas impersonal facets of nature can be intrinsic. Thus you whole cosmological argument brings you nowhere towards affirming theism or refuting atheism. It is little more than speculation over things that we can’t observe or know to begin with, which you then cook up syllogisms about to create a facsimile of evidence, when you actually have none.

  16. For starters, the observable finite could follow an unobservable infinite regress of finite causes. Some think that this intuitively unlikely, but there is no logical reason that it can’t exist. Assume, however, that there had to be a self-existant first cause. You beg the questions by assuming that this first cause can only be your Levantine deity invented thousands of years ago in mythical ancient texts. Even if there has to be a self-existent first cause, there is no reason to suppose that it cannot be a natural and impersonal phenomena. In fact, this is far more likely, since any personal thing that we can observe (namely, humans and animals) has always been finite and caused, whereas impersonal facets of nature can be intrinsic. Thus your whole cosmological argument brings you nowhere towards affirming theism or refuting atheism. It is little more than speculation over things that we can’t observe or know to begin with, which you then cook up syllogisms about to create a facsimile of evidence, when you actually have none.

  17. For starters, the observable finite could follow an unobservable infinite regress of finite causes. Some think that this is intuitively unlikely, but there is no logical reason that it can’t exist. Assume, however, that there had to be a self-existant first cause. You beg the questions by assuming that this first cause can only be your Levantine deity invented thousands of years ago in mythical ancient texts. Even if there has to be a self-existent first cause, there is no reason to suppose that it cannot be a natural and impersonal phenomena. In fact, this is far more likely, since any personal thing that we can observe (namely, humans and animals) has always been finite and caused, whereas impersonal facets of nature can be intrinsic. Thus your whole cosmological argument brings you nowhere towards affirming theism or refuting atheism. It is little more than speculation over things that we can’t observe or know to begin with, which you then cook up syllogisms about to create a facsimile of evidence, when you actually have none.

  18. Ironically, Jesse himself has taken to deleting rebuttals to his blog post. Any chance you will chastise Jesse for this, Sandra?

  19. Most creationists will settle down when The Perot launches its Jesus in the Time of the Dinosaurs exhibit in April. The story of Jesus and the Raptor should especially answer a lot of questions and cool everyone’s heels.

  20. I sat behind Jesus in my 6th grade math class. He was a nice kid. Somewhat shy, but really nice…..and quite the joker, too, once you peeled back that shell he had constructed around himself.

  21. The problem is when scientists discuss the Bing Bang as the “creation” of the universe — which they do *all the time* — versus the development of it. Even as a non-religious person I have a problem with that, since its fallacious, but I can see how religious people would doubly have a problem with it.