JW Science Quote (1-22)

by TD 6 Replies latest jw friends

  • TD
    TD

    This week's installment in the science quotes of "Celebrated JW scholars" concerns one of their perennial claims. Based on a literal reading of Genesis 1:30, Jehovah's Witnesses believe and teach that all animals were orginally designed to be vegetarians and that the restoration prophecies of Isaiah foretell a return to this state. This has been stated many times in JW literature:.

    "He made them to be at peace with the animals, with no violence or killing for food among animals or man."

    "The animals -- who had a vegetarian die in Eden, as did humans -- began to live off one another, some even eating humans when possible."

    "Then will begin the restoration of Edenic conditions -- of Paradise. (Luke 23:43) That will mean the restoring of peace and harmony between humans and animals, they no longer using one another for food." (Awake! October 8, 1982)

    This particular claim is particularly egregious, not just because because it betrays a knowledge of animal life somewhere below that of the average farm-boy, but because it is a complete repudiation of the argument of intelligent design. Consider what is required to be a vegetarian:

    Plant material used as food is loosely classed by its "Quality." The highest quality vegetation would be the fruits and seeds of the plant. Many animals are able to eat fruits and seeds. Green leaves and stems are lower in quality and not all animals are capable of digesting these. The lowest quality vegetation of all would be the biologically inactive, dried-out stems of grass plants (e.g. Straw) Even ruminants cannot subsist on straw alone.

    The problem for vegetarians is that higher quality vegetation is not available year-round. (A further problem for Jehovah's Witnesses, is that whereas God gave vegetation bearing seed to mankind, He only gave green vegetation to the animals.) Strict vegetarians must be able to subsist on low quality fibrous roughages for prolonged periods of time.

    This presents a special challenge, because in order to gain access to the proteins within, a vegetarian must rupture the cell walls of the plant material it consumes. In plants, the cell wall is a fairly rigid structure reinforced by cellulose. The more rigid the structure of the plant (e.g. Stalks, stems, canes etc.) the higher the cellulose content will be. Cellulose is a polymeric carbohydrate not directly digestable by any animal life on earth. Every animal that exclusively consumes plant material, from the termite to the buffalo, does so in a two stage process involving both mechanical and bacterial breakdown.

    The process starts with mechanical breakdown. The teeth of mammalian vegetarians are usually "High-crowned." Unlike our teeth, (Which are Low-crowned) high-crowned teeth are not fully enclosed by the enamel. Instead, the enamel ends in numerous sharp edges making the tooth similar to a kitchen grater.

    Grazers and browsers have long rows of these teeth, usually with at least three molars and three molar-form premolars:

    Because these teeth are subject to rapid wear from abrasive silica particles adhereing to plant materials at or near ground level, these teeth also grow continuously throughout the life of the animal. These are called, "Ever-growing" teeth.

    The chemical element of digestion occurs in special structures like multi-chambered stomachs (e.g. Bovids, Cervids, Camelids) enlarged hind-guts (e.g. Equines) and parietal blind sacs (Hippopotamids) where billions of symbiotic bacteria and protozoa secret enzymes that break down cellulose.

    In contrast, a carnivore does not grind it's food. Carnivores essentially swallow their food whole. The function of a carnivore's teeth is simply to cut the food into pieces small enough to be swallowed. Carnivores therefore never have high-crowned, ever-growing teeth. They typically have low-crowned teeth with elongated, interlocking cusps that do not directly occlude. Instead, these cusps slip past each other like shears. The pairs of teeth performing this function are called, "Carnaissials."

    You can see in the picture above, that carnivores do not need a lot of molars. In the cat, for example, the cheek teeth are not even molar-form; they form carnassial pairs. A carnivore's teeth might look formidable in the sense that you would not want to be bit by them, but a more woefully inadequete design for consuming vegetation can hardly be conceived.

    Carnivores also lack the specialized digestive apparatus for the breakdown of cellulose. Medium and low-quality vegetation causes most carivores severe gastric upset and usually induces vomiting. Further, no member of the cat family is able to synthesize the amino acid, Taurine which is not found in plant material. Taurine is an essential amino acid, and an animal deprived of it will die in short order.

    Both vegetarians and carnivores have digestive designs that are perfect for the types of food they consume. To claim that complex interdependent design like this is the result of adaptation rather than the deliberate actions of a Designer is to repudiate the argument of intelligent design entirely. It's hard to imagine anyone who advocates creation doing this, yet that is exactly what celebrated JW scholars do.

  • AllTimeJeff
    AllTimeJeff

    In other words, they went ahead and propagated a claim as fact, only to learn that science doesn't back up their BS at all.

    This was fascinating. Yup, meat eating animals who originally were only going to eat Caesers salad all their life had those big sharp teeth created by the almighty Jehovah to maul a radish. Gotta love the GB and their insightful, spirit directed, (not spirit inspired) research.

  • Mad Sweeney
    Mad Sweeney

    Great info. For the ridiculous WT assertion that all animals used to be herbivores to be true, they would have to have evolved to their current state quickly after the fall of Adam and Eve. The WTS is pro-evolution, LOL. Who'd 'a thunk it?

  • Open mind
    Open mind

    Excellent post TD.

    I don't remember ever reading that Awake! article when it came out. I just read it in it's entirety and it is amazingly stupefying. I don't ever recall hearing such an extended Watchtower explanation of the Edenic ecosystem (tm).

    For those wanting to check it out, it's called "When All Nature Will Be in Harmony", Awake! 10/8/82, pg 9-13.

    Here's a couple more doozies from it:

    *******************

    Yet, what about the features of animals and humans that are used for maiming and killing? Since God created a vast variety of different features, many of them could be adapted to the new situation to help in survival.

    ********************

    An example of how God can subdue the violence in animals was the peace that existed among beasts and humans for about a year in Noah’s ark.
    Keep in mind that what exists today is not what it was like in the paradise of Eden. That environment was vastly different. Many foods were likely different. Probably the animals with hardier teeth had rougher food. Their teeth were designed for that.

    *********************

    If anyone wants the whole thing, with TD's permission, I can throw it up here. (pun fully intended)

    Thanks again TD.

    om

  • TD
    TD
    If anyone wants the whole thing, with TD's permission, I can throw it up here. (pun fully intended)

    LOL!

    Absolutely. It would be good for people to see exactly what level of scholarship we are talking about.

    The claim in the same article that gorillas have "Fangs" or that these "Fangs" have anything to do with the gathering and consumption of food is also priceless.

    • Snakes and spiders have fangs. Mammals don't have fangs, they have canines.
    • The elongated canines occur in the male gorilla only. The female subsists on the same diet as the male with canines that are greatly reduced in size.
    • Gorillas don't "...rip and consume heavy vegetation" with their canines, they gather and prepare food with their hands. No other creature except man puts more manual preparation into the act of eating.
  • Open mind
    Open mind

    *** g82 10/8 pp. 9-13 When All Nature Will Be in Harmony ***

    When All Nature Will Be in Harmony

    DESPITE the abundant evidence showing that the design in nature requires an intelligent Designer, many persons do not believe that God exists. They feel that a loving Creator would not have designed the violence, killing and wickedness so prevalent on earth.
    However, what if God did NOT design the violence and killing? What if he is NOT responsible for the gross wickedness among humans? Instead, what if he detests these things and promises that he will absolutely put them to an end in his own due time?

    Who Is Responsible?

    A company may manufacture a knife for cutting vegetables. If someone uses this knife to kill another person, who is responsible? Is the manufacturer of the knife condemned? No, the one who misused the knife is guilty.
    The human hand is used wonderfully for ever so many constructive tasks. It builds houses, plants trees, picks up needles, tenderly holds babies. But if a man uses his hands to strangle another person, could we charge that the hand was improperly designed? No, it is not the designer who is to blame but the owner.
    If a builder constructs a beautiful home and gives it to tenants who vandalize it, who is at fault? Would you charge the builder with the crime? No, you would hold the vandalizers responsible for the wrong. And surely you would not deny that the builder existed just because the tenants were delinquent.
    It is contrary to reason and to justice to condemn the innocent. It is contrary to reason to condemn body parts or organs that God designed for a good purpose if they are used differently at present.
    In the Bible we have a clear record of God’s purpose for human and animal life on earth, and why they are in chaos today. Further, that record tells us how all nature will soon come into complete peace and harmony.

    Not Designed That Way

    Did the human and animal creations always behave the way they do now? Have they always hurt and maimed and killed? Were they designed to do that?
    The answer to these questions is: NO, not at all!
    Indeed, is God even the ruler of this present system of things? Is he guiding the nations in their dealings with one another? Again, the answer to these questions is: NO, not at all!
    Well, then, just how was it long ago? Why are things the way they are now? Who, indeed, does rule this world? And just how will God bring all nature into complete peace and harmony?

    The Way It Was

    When God created humans and animals to live on this earth, he did not purpose for them to be killers. They were created to have peaceful relations with one another. Thus conditions were altogether different from what they are today. The record tells us that “God saw everything he had made and, look! it was very good.”—Genesis 1:31.
    The human creation was to have in loving subjection “the fish of the sea and the flying creatures of the heavens and every living creature that is moving upon the earth.” (Verse 28) None of the animals in the garden of Eden were killers. They were not a threat to man, nor was man a threat to any animal.
    God’s Word clearly says regarding the first humans: “I have given to you all vegetation bearing seed which is on the surface of the whole earth and every tree on which there is the fruit of a tree bearing seed. To you let it serve as food.” (Genesis 1:29) Hence, man did not use animals for food.
    What was the food of the animals? The inspired record states: “To every wild beast of the earth and to every flying creature of the heavens and to everything moving upon the earth in which there is life as a soul I have given all green vegetation for food.” Or, as Today’s English Version of the Bible puts it: “For all the wild animals and for all the birds I have provided grass and leafy plants for food.”—Genesis 1:30.
    So when God designed humans, he put them in a peaceful paradise called Eden. He made them to be at peace with the animals, with no violence or killing for food among animals or man. And humans were to keep it that way by caring for themselves, the animals and the garden paradise that they and their offspring would spread to encompass eventually the entire earth.—Genesis 1:27, 28.

    The Key

    How could humans keep this peaceful paradise and live forever on earth, as was their prospect? By obeying God’s laws. That was the key. Why was that so important? Because God did not design humans to be independent of their Maker and still be successful. The Bible clearly says: “To earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step.”—Jeremiah 10:23.
    Mankind’s problems began when our first parents misused their free moral agency. They were seduced by a rebellious spirit creature to believe that they could determine right and wrong without God’s help. They chose independence from God. But that was not the Designer’s fault. “Perfect is his activity, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness, with whom there is no injustice; righteous and upright is he,” the Bible says. The responsibility for the consequences of rebellion lies with the rebels: “They have acted ruinously on their own part; they are not his children, the defect is their own.”—Deuteronomy 32:4, 5; Genesis 2:15–3:24.
    Since humans wanted independence, God gave it to them. However, no longer would he sustain them in perfection. So imperfection and death came into being. (Romans 5:12) And God permitted this—for a period of time—so that all could see what the course of independence would cost mankind, the animals and the earth. For these thousands of years God has allowed this so that once and for all time the sad consequences of rebellion would be manifest.
    Thus, independence from God and his laws is what turned man into the way of imperfection, violence and death. Also, as man turned toward lawlessness, the earthly creation, too, became chaotic. Man lost his loving dominion over the animals. Since humans could not control themselves peacefully, it is no surprise that the animals are in the same condition.
    The animals—who had a vegetarian diet in Eden, as did humans—began to live off one another, some even eating humans when possible. (Genesis 1:30) And, as a concession for his survival, man was authorized to eat animal flesh for food after the Flood.—Genesis 9:2-4.

    Not Designed to Kill

    Yet, what about the features of animals and humans that are used for maiming and killing? Since God created a vast variety of different features, many of them could be adapted to the new situation to help in survival.
    For instance, most animals would continue to eat vegetation, as is the case down to this day. An example is the powerful gorilla, with its awesome fangs—fangs still used to rip and consume heavy vegetation. But others adapted themselves to eating flesh. Yet predators make up only a very small percent of the animals.
    Man, too, has adapted. In his imperfection and waywardness, he often uses his mind and hands to maim and kill. He has even cannibalized other humans for food. And his teeth can be adapted to eating meat, though that was not included in his diet in Eden.
    But what of the “balance of nature”? If there was no killing, how would this be maintained? For one thing, it was man who was to live forever on earth. That promise was not given to animals. They would die when their life span was completed.
    Also, many animals have built-in mechanisms that reduce their fertility when overcrowding occurs. And this is without God’s direct intercession now. Surely, when God’s time comes for all the earth to be brought back into that peaceful Edenic condition, it will be no great thing for the Grand Designer of animals and humans to control their numbers without violence.
    An example of how God can subdue the violence in animals was the peace that existed among beasts and humans for about a year in Noah’s ark.
    Keep in mind that what exists today is not what it was like in the paradise of Eden. That environment was vastly different. Many foods were likely different. Probably the animals with hardier teeth had rougher food. Their teeth were designed for that.
    Certainly there are questions that cannot now be answered about the exact conditions in Eden. But this does not argue that there was no Designer.

    Who Rules This World?

    Also, what of the contention, such as Bertrand Russell’s, that anyone who was all-wise and all-powerful should not have made such a mess of this world? He assumed, as do others, that if there is a God he is responsible for this world.
    However, the Creator, Jehovah God, is not this world’s ruler. This present system of things is run by men independent from him, and it is manipulated by that unseen spirit rebel, Satan the Devil. The Bible calls Satan “the god of this system of things.” (2 Corinthians 4:4) Jesus called Satan “the ruler of this world.” (John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11) The oversight of the nations is what Satan offered Jesus in an attempt to get him to rebel against God.—Luke 4:5-8.
    Hence, all the chaos and violence committed by humans is the responsibility of rebellious humans and wicked spirit forces. God is not responsible.
    The Restoration
    The Bible speaks of the “restoration of all things.” (Acts 3:21) It shows unmistakably that the miserable experiment in independence from God will shortly come to an end. Both the wicked spirit forces in heavenly places and rebellious humans on earth will be cleared out, paving the way for “new heavens and a new earth . . . and in these righteousness is to dwell.”—2 Peter 3:13; see also Proverbs 2:21, 22; Revelation 19:11-21.
    Then will begin the restoration of Edenic conditions—of Paradise. (Luke 23:43) That will mean the restoring of peace and harmony between humans and animals, they no longer using one another for food. The Bible states at Isaiah 11:6-9: “The wolf will actually reside for a while with the male lamb, and with the kid the leopard itself will lie down, and the calf and the maned young lion and the well-fed animal all together; and a mere little boy will be leader over them. And the cow and the bear themselves will feed; together their young ones will lie down. And even the lion will eat straw just like the bull. And the sucking child will certainly play upon the hole of the cobra; and upon the light aperture of a poisonous snake will a weaned child actually put his own hand. They will not do any harm or cause any ruin in all my holy mountain.”
    In the human realm, total peace will also be a reality: “He [God] is making wars to cease to the extremity of the earth. The bow he breaks apart and does cut the spear in pieces; the [war] wagons he burns in the fire.”—Psalm 46:9.
    Hence, with good reason does the inspired Bible prophecy say this about the Grand Designer’s soon-to-come new order: “The meek ones themselves will possess the earth, and they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace.”—Psalm 37:11; Matthew 5:5.
    While the consequences of rebellion will thus be erased, the idea that our first parents, Adam and Eve, rebelled against God causes some people to wonder. They have been taught to regard Adam and Eve as mythical characters. So can we have confidence that they really existed?
    [Blurb on page 10]
    If someone uses his hand to hurt another, who is guilty—the hand’s designer or its owner?
    [Blurb on page 11]
    As man turned toward lawlessness, the earthly creation, too, became chaotic
    [Picture on page 11]
    The gorilla’s awesome teeth are used to consume vegetation, not meat
    [Pictures on page 12]
    Adam and Eve were at peace with the animals in Eden—content with vegetation as the food for all
    God will soon restore Edenic conditions in an earth that will be made a paradise

    ****************************

    You just can't make this stuff up! Oh wait. Yes you can.

    om

  • wobble
    wobble

    Dear TD,

    Your posts on here are simply priceless ! they are so valuable to us, the uneducated product of the WT.

    please keep this sort of thing coming,it is truly great.

    I just love to be equipped to show any Dub that they are wrong about any subject. Your post impinges on a question I posed to an elder years ago, about how "Nature red in tooth and claw" seemed to be designed in, so if you believed in a Creator you believed He had made things that way. The Elder could not explain it

    Thanks again,

    love,

    Wobble

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