Re: [asa] How big a deal is homology?

From: Jim Armstrong <>
Date: Tue Mar 27 2007 - 22:35:32 EDT

I think this is still too technical for a great many who are skeptical,
but who might still be open to good plausibility (and non-technical)
argument. JimA

David Opderbeck wrote:

> Jim -- isn't the usual reply -- "yes, but the commonalities include
> things like bits of viral DNA and pseudogenes that strongly suggest
> inheritance of genes over time, rather than the plunking-in of
> reusable modules. If these are just reusable modules, they have the
> appearance of age, much like the fossil record." Of course, a
> sur-reply might be, "yes, and assuming psuedogenes really aren't
> functional (which isn't clear), God may have developed stretches of
> the genome over time and then puncuated that with new acts of special
> creation into which he asserted the components he had developed." It
> seem to me that sur-reply is indeed reasonable as far as it goes, but
> that the discussion then has passed into theological questions
> concerning secondary causes and hermeneutical questions concerning
> whether any acts of separate creation are implied in scripture.
> On 3/27/07, Jim Armstrong <
> <>> wrote:
> The problem, as I see it, is that there is a very plausible
> non-technical retort. "If God had a successful recipe, it makes
> perfect
> sense to use and reuse the same formula with slight variations in all
> living creations. There's no need for an evolutionary explanation for
> such commonalities."
> It's very difficult to respond to that in kind. If anyone has a good
> response, requiring only a comparably slight understanding of the
> science, I for one would sure welcome it. JimA
> Brent Foster wrote:
> >This is a question for those on the list who know more molecular
> genetics than I do (almost everyone!). Now that the human genome
> has been sequenced, as well as that of several other organisms,
> sequences can be compared and checked for similarity. Much has
> been made of the 95 odd percent similarity between the genomes of
> humans and chimps. And of course the 80 odd percent similarity
> between mice and humans. Anti-evolutiuonists point out that the
> similarity is only 95 or so percent, not the 98% once claimed. Ha!
> And of course mice are even less similar. But isn't the problem
> that there is any similarity at all? Aren't family relationships
> demonstrated by matching identical sequences of DNA that are long
> enough to rule out coincidence? And aren't these same types of
> similarities found linking different species, genera, families
> etc, such as humans, chimps and mice? Maybe I'm demonstrating my
> ignorance of molecular genetics. Does 95% similarity between human
> and chimp DNA mean!
> !
> > that 95% of the sequences are similar? I ask because I am
> involved in discussion with someone who is skeptical of DNA
> comparisons.
> >
> >Brent
> >
> >
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Received on Tue Mar 27 22:36:08 2007

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