Re: [asa] Laminin

From: David Opderbeck <>
Date: Mon Jan 05 2009 - 08:42:41 EST

I saw that video, and honestly I thought it was a little silly and that the
preacher was milking it. Sure, it could be a useful little illustration,
but I just felt like the whole thing was over the top. But maybe that's
just me.

David W. Opderbeck
Associate Professor of Law
Seton Hall University Law School
Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology

On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 8:31 AM, Jon Tandy <> wrote:

> Did a little research on laminin, and found a few things.
> (see
> comment #8 for an interesting point. And then there's the strange comment
> in #11: "I love laminin?" How weird is that?)
> On the other hand, there is
> I sort of have mixed feelings on this. In some ways, I can see it used as
> a
> parable of sorts, using a physical illustration to point to a greater
> spiritual reality. If that's where it stops, and if the subject matter and
> devotional aspect are immediately shifted to Christ and the cross, then it
> could be a valuable, faith-affirming illustration. In fact, this
> illustration holds even WITHOUT the emblematic cross shape of the molecule.
> I.e., even without its shape, we can give a "preacher analogy" of "Just
> like
> laminin is a fundamental part of the connective tissue throughout our
> bodies, so Christ holds us and all Creation together." Like all parables
> though, it has its limits.
> Once we take it further and say that this "cross shape" with its biological
> properties are actually testimonies of Christ that were "built in" to the
> biological molecules, and so on, then the case become weaker, the stronger
> we try to make it. This is a prime example where we may be set up for a
> fall of faith, once it's shown the person that the actual molecules aren't
> necessarily cross-shaped in practice, and other scientific questions. I
> haven't searched far enough to find anything like this, but what if (for
> instance) laminin or other cross-shaped molecules help in the spread of
> cancer as well as sustaining life? Would it hold such a special place in
> Christian apologetics, if it turns out to be partially responsible for
> death
> as well as life? Biology, like life itself, is a messy business unlike the
> sanitized textbook versions.
> And then there's the question of, why laminin? What about all the other
> amazing parts of our bodies that hold us together, and "bear witness" of a
> Creator? It seems an inordinate elevation of one particular molecule,
> simply because textbooks describe it with a cross shape. Shall we look for
> molecules that have a dove shape (representative of the Holy Spirit), or
> molecules that have the outline of the land of Israel, or are in the shape
> of the letter 'C' (for Christ) or 'X' (for Christ in Greek), ad infinitum?
> Shall we give these structures special relevance, just because of a
> presumed
> likeness? I've seen cloud formations that looked like certain things, but
> that doesn't mean they were "designed as a testimony" of anything. The
> physical analogy is in my perception -- I may see the face of Christ in a
> cloud, and the next guy may see a bowl of oatmeal. It seems a losing
> proposition, and in fact a fallacy of associating two things that look
> similar and calling them related.
> Not only are there questions biologically and logically, but there is the
> question of placing an inordinate affection on biology to "hold us
> together"
> -- but what about Christ? Is it Christ that holds us together, or is it
> laminin? Well, at least Christians would be happey to say, "both". But
> for
> those who want a nice, neat testimony of Christ, the statement "Christ and
> laminin hold us together" sounds remarkably un-Christ-centric (kind of like
> "faith plus works" for many Protestants). But if the real answer is given
> as, "Christ holds us together spiritually, and laminin (plus 100,000 other
> quarks, atoms, enzymes, proteins, ligaments, skin cells, etc., etc.) hold
> us
> together physically," then laminin quickly loses its primacy and returns to
> its original place as one small piece of a large biological puzzle. Again,
> why the special emphasis on one component? I go back to the "parable"
> argument as the only reason to talk about it at all.
> Jon Tandy
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [] On
> Behalf Of Iain Strachan
> Sent: Monday, January 05, 2009 2:03 AM
> To: Dehler, Bernie
> Cc:
> Subject: Re: [asa] Is Science an enemy of faith? (Laminin too)
> On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 4:52 AM, Dehler, Bernie <>
> wrote:
> >
> > We were going to watch the famous laminen video. Have you seen it?
> > The "cross in the molecules" . holding everything together just as
> > the Bible says (Col. 1:17). The video wasn't available, so we'll
> > watch it next time likely. Sorry to say, I have a lot of rebuttals for
> it.
> >
> >
> Bernie,
> I'd be interested if you could point me to a web-site with a clear rebuttal
> of this claim. I've a colleague who describes himself as a "diehard
> Creationist" who keeps passing me material from his church.
> One of these was the laminin claim, but I didn't at the time have a clear
> rebuttal to make a response, and to say "you must be incredibly gullible to
> believe that" seemed not to be a charitable response, so I left it with a
> "hmm".
> Iain
> --
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Received on Mon Jan 5 08:43:28 2009

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