The Signature of Life and The Law of Large Numbers

By Geoffrey Rowe (Electrical Engineer, Kennedy Space Center)


Imagine a wife had to go on a sudden trip and left her husband a note on the front-porch saying, “Please feed the cats each day when you get home from work.”  But ten days later when she got back, he had not fed the cats at all.  He said, “I did not know that note was from you!  I thought a crow picked up the note from a neighbor’s house and dropped it on our door step.  After all, it had bird droppings on it."

It is true that birds exist, and they sometimes pick up items and drop them at other places, but the chance of this wife believing her husband’s excuse is zero.  Likewise, the excuses that mankind makes to avoid the obvious evidences of design (by God) seem to be getting more and more ridiculous.  God has left mankind with so much evidence that mankind is without excuse (Rom. 1:18-20).  He has also left us a message that we can prove is from Him (see  Like the husband, the evolutionist says to God, “I did not know that message was from you.  I thought everything got here by an accident.  After all, men were able to make up Just So Stories (as Rudyard Kipling did) that explain where many things could have come from."

Making up excuses for not believing in God is nothing new.  Evolutionists have been inventing and then changing their “just so stories” for thousands of years just to avoid the obvious.  In the mid-1800s the famous scientist Louis Pasteur was ridiculed for not believing in upward evolution.  Yet he is the one who found the signature of life in his tartaric acid experiments of 1849.  Only the molecules from living materials have this unusual arrangement (signature), which is one of the many proofs that life had to start as a design by God—not random chance over billions of years.

Even with this signature proof, the evolutionists were not silenced until Mr. Pasteur showed the public his famous swan neck flask experiments (1862).  Then the “common” people easily understood what has now become called the Fundamental Law of Biology: “Life only comes from preceding life and that of its own kind.”  The public’s understanding of this law finally silenced the evolutionists.  Why didn’t the evidence itself convince them?  Just like today, until the public understands the impossibility of evolution, the evolutionists (who control most of the sources of information in our culture – TV, newspapers, public schools, universities, etc.) will not give up their theories.

Before we can understand this signature, we must obtain a grasp on two things: 1) the fundamental law of statistics, called the “Law of Large Numbers”; and 2) amino acid chirality.  Please don’t get turned off by thinking you are going to get some dry lesson in statistics.  You already understand this fundamental law, which can be shown by an example from the immoral system of gambling.  The state lottery demonstrates your understanding of large numbers.

Imagine your next-door neighbor won the lottery grand prize two weeks in a row.  That would make the national news.  What if he then won it the third week in a row?  The police would be showing up at his doorstep.  Why?  Because the chances of winning three weeks in a row is so incredibly small that the police and lottery officials would know that someone must be using intelligence instead of randomness to win.  Nobody in the world has that much luck! chance of winning the state lottery grand prize three weeks in a row (choosing the exact 6 numbers out of 49) is about one chance out of 2700—times a billion times a billion!  You may not know the exact probability, but you know it would be impossible.  Yet evolutionists claim something far more impossible to obtain even one “simple” protein.  But before showing these details, more information is needed about point number 2, amino acid chirality.

Although chirality may be a foreign-sounding word, its definition is simple.  It just means that most amino acids come in left-handed and right-handed forms (chirality).  But what does this have to do with the signature of life?  In high school biology you were probably taught that each of life’s proteins is made up of a long chain of amino acids.  A typical protein contains about 300 amino acids.  Louis Pasteur discovered the amazing fact (signature of life) that all of life’s proteins contain only one chiral form of amino acids (left-handed).  So are most amino acids left-handed?  No.  That is what makes Pasteur’s discovery so important.

“But what about the famous Miller-Urey experiment done in 1952?   I thought these guys made amino acids that life could evolve from.”  No.  What they created were an equal amount of right and left-handed amino acids.  This detail was left out by the evolutionists and the biased media.  They knew they needed to produce almost 100% left-handed amino acids, but they only got the usual 50%.  They never told you they made the exact combination of amino acids that life could NOT evolve from.  For more impossibilities (Miller-Urey, 1952) see page 84 in

In other words, how could conditions, on the evolutionist’s imaginary primitive earth (before life got started), randomly assemble 300 left handed amino acids?  Statistically this is like flipping a coin and getting heads 300 times in a row.  If you think winning the lottery three weeks in a row is impossible, just try getting 300 heads in a row!  Even if you flipped coins a million times per year for 4.6 billion years you would still not have a chance of getting 300 heads in a row, and this is just for one protein, not the 260 proteins needed for the “simplest” cell imaginable.

For those interested in the chances of getting heads 300 times in a row after flipping 1 million times per year for 4.6 billion years = [(1x106)*(4.6x109)] / 2300  = 1 / (440 x 1072)  = one chance in 440 times a billion times a billion times a billion times a billion times a billion times a billion times a billion times a billion.

Just to form one protein (that has 300 left-handed amino acids) would be like your neighbor winning the lottery 10 weeks in a row.  Remember, if he did so even 3 weeks in a row, the police would investigate him for suspected dishonesty.  Evolutionists need to be questioned regarding their honesty each time they say random chance produced life from non-life!

[head+tails]The following illustration shows the difference between recognizing intelligent design versus random chance.  Imagine you had two rooms 10 feet by 10 feet.  In each room you took 300 coins, mixed them up, and threw them in the air.  How many heads and how many tails would you expect?  Most of the time you would count about 150 heads and 150 tails.  Would you expect 290 heads and 10 tails?  No.  Now, what if you took a 6-year-old into one of those two rooms and asked him to turn the coins so that they all were heads?  The child could use his intelligence and easily do this.

Now imagine an evolutionist visited you and you took him to both rooms.  You asked him, “Could both of these rooms have their heads and tails explained by pure random chance?  Does either of these two rooms show proof that intelligence was involved (a signature of intelligence)?”  You would be shocked if he said, “After examining both rooms, I have scientifically determined that both rooms got their coin distribution by pure chance.  No intelligence was involved!  But one of the rooms took millions of years for its coins to randomly develop into all heads.”

Then you showed him 259 other rooms, where each of the rooms had 300 coins that were all heads, and he said the same thing.  He would obviously be ignoring the obvious, which is what evolutionists do concerning the formation of even one typical protein (with 300 left-handed amino acids).  It is statistically impossible to have occurred randomly.  Intelligence was required.  Again, it is safe to say that if the evolutionist were to win the state lottery 10 weeks in a row, he would wind up in jail (let alone the 10*260 weeks in a row he claims for forming only the proteins for a “simple” cell).  We need to put evolutionists into an intellectual prison for daring to deny such obvious things as the “Law of Large Numbers,” and the signature of life.  It has been proven since 1849.

Brought to you by South Seminole Church of Christ, Winter Park, FL 32792 (Non-compromised worship)  The Bible has proven itself to be from God (Scientifically, Archaeologically, Historically, etc.). Have you seen the evidences? If we can be of any help, call 407-657-0657, or visit www.WhyBaptism.ORG and press the link “Noah’s Ark Model”, to see pictures of our 16 foot model of Noah’s Ark, or press the “Creation Videos” link for information on Creation versus Evolution and America’s Silencing of God.



Did the media and evolutionists report what Miller & Urey really did find? Or did they hide the real results from the public? Decide for yourself. The following is just a small excerpt from an Apologetics Press article. See the article for much more evidence and the technical references

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following article was written by one of A.P.’s auxiliary staff scientists. Dr. Houts holds a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). Dr. Houts has received numerous awards, including a NASA Certificate of Appreciation for Exceptional Leadership. His professional activities include serving as Chairman of the Symposium on Space Nuclear Power and Propulsion. Dr. Houts was employed by Los Alamos National Laboratory for 11 years, serving in various positions including Deputy Group Leader. He presently serves as the Nuclear Research Manager for NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center.

Origin of Life

Another area where the religious nature of the theory of evolution can be seen is the discussion of the origin of life. From a Christian perspective, the Bible tells us how life was created during the week of Creation. Life is evidence of God’s handiwork. In contrast, humanistic and atheistic religions require that the existence of life somehow be explained without God. In the 21st century, most humanists and atheists have chosen to put their faith in the theory of evolution.

When the theory of evolution was being popularized in the late 1800s, it was easy to speculate about “simple” life forms originating in warm ponds laden with chemicals or in similar locales (Darwin, 1887, p. 202). Leading evolutionists freely speculated or even fabricated “evidence” in support of their religion (Grigg, 1996, 18[2]:33-36). However, advances in science have shown that these speculations and fabrications are nonsense.

For example, we now know that the simplest life form is far more complex than anything humans have ever made. It is far more reasonable to claim that a space shuttle can randomly assemble and launch itself than to claim that a simple life form can arise spontaneously from random chemical interactions.

Hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent on biotechnology. Biotechnology employs some of our brightest Ph.D.s, working in incredibly sophisticated laboratories. However, despite this tremendous investment of money, talent, and equipment, no one ever has come close to making life from non-life. Relatively simple techniques such as cloning (which essentially involves transferring pre-existing DNA from one organism to another) make national headlines when achieved, but to an objective observer do nothing more than show how amazing and complex life truly is (see Butt and Lyons, 2005 for numerous other examples).

In response, many evolutionists (and the textbooks they write) point to experiments such as the Miller-Urey experiment to show that what they call the “building blocks” of life could potentially form spontaneously. However, these so-called “building blocks” are no closer to being a living organism than the atoms they comprise.

A typical textbook discussion (e.g., Miller and Levine, 1998, p. 405) of the Miller-Urey experiment may be summarized as follows.

  1. Stanley Miller and Harold Urey re-created the early atmosphere by mixing methane, ammonia, hydrogen, and water together.
  2. By passing an electric spark through the mixture, they showed that organic compounds could form spontaneously.
  3. The results of this experiment were spectacular and exceeded Miller and Urey’s wildest dreams.

By invoking emotion (“wildest dreams”) and selectively presenting only a very small subset of the relevant information, the student is effectively misled. What most textbooks fail to mention is far more telling. Consider a few examples:

  1. Even most evolutionists now agree that the atmosphere simulated by Miller and Urey could not have existed. Ammonia and methane would have been destroyed by ultraviolet light. Hydrogen could have been present in small amounts only, as it is able to escape earth’s gravity. In the current opinion of evolutionists, carbon dioxide and nitrogen always have been present. Despite this evidence, the textbook boldly asserts, “Stanley Miller and Harold Urey re-created the early atmosphere."
  2. In a watery environment, amino acids do not bind together in long chains, but break apart. In a watery environment, only one in 10200 (one followed by 200 zeroes) of the amino acids can exist in a chain of 100 amino acids, roughly the length of the smallest protein. Biology texts tend to avoid completely this fatal flaw in “primordial soup”-type scenarios. However, evolutionists recognize the problem and have made numerous attempts to address it. These include postulating the presence of condensing agents (inadequate even with optimistic chemical conditions that are impossible given other evolutionary assumptions), postulating a heat source to drive off water (which destroys some vital amino acids and results in highly randomized polymers), and others. All attempts have failed to show a realistic way for spontaneously assembling the long chains of amino acids needed to form even a simple useful protein. [NOTE: An excellent summary of (failed) attempts by evolutionists to address this issue is given in Sarfati, 1998a, 12[3]:281-284.]
  3. Amino acids exist in left- and right-handed forms, and life uses only those that are left-handed. Miller-Urey type experiments result in an even (racemic) mix of left-and right-handed amino acids, incapable of forming proteins. In the incredibly unlikely event that a chain of 100 amino acids could form (see the previous paragraph), the odds that all of those amino acids would be left handed are ~ one in 1030. For more typical protein sizes (400 amino acids), the odds are ~ one in 10120. This fatal flaw is also ignored in biology textbooks, although the authors obviously are aware it exists. For example, Campbell discussed racemization (the slow conversion of the pure L-amino acids in proteins into a mixture of L- and D-amino acids) as a means for determining how long an organism has been dead (1996, p. 457). However, during the book’s extensive discussion on the theory of evolution, the issue is not even mentioned. As with the polymerization issue, desperate attempts have been made to address the chirality (molecular handedness) issue. These include polarization by ultraviolet or other light sources, optically active quartz, the weak force, clay, and numerous other scenarios that, when analyzed or tested, prove far too inefficient to improve significantly the odds of spontaneously forming a left-handed amino acid. [NOTE: An excellent summary of these failed attempts is given in Sarfati, 1998b, 12[3]:263-266.]
  4. Less than two percent of the products formed in the Miller-Urey experiment were amino acids. The major products were carboxylic acids and tar, both of which are toxic to life and also far more likely to bond to amino acids (thus breaking any developing chain) than amino acids themselves.
  5. To form a chain of amino acids, bifunctional monomers are required. If a unifunctional monomer bonds with the chain, the chain is terminated. Miller-Urey type experiments produce at least three times as many unifunctional monomers as bifunctional monomers. This fact also makes the odds of randomly assembling a long chain of amino acids impossibly low. (GKR: Therefore less than 1 in 4 chance of getting a bifunctional monomer. Therefore getting just a short protein of 100 amino acids: less than one in 4100 = 1.6x1060)
  6. Many famous evolutionists have calculated the odds of a cell or even just the proteins in a cell randomly assembling. These odds (again calculated by evolutionists themselves) so discredit the theory that they typically are not mentioned in discussions of the topic. The famous atheistic astronomer Sir Frederick Hoyle calculated the odds of even just the proteins of an amoeba arising by chance at one in 1040,000, i.e., one followed by 40,000 zeroes (Hoyle and Wickramasinghe, 1981, p. 130). Harold Morowitz, former professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry at Yale University, calculated the odds that a simple, single-celled organism might randomly assemble itself from pre-existing building blocks as one in 10100,000,000,000, i.e., one followed by 100 billion zeroes (Morowitz, 1968, p. 98). Carl Sagan and other famous evolutionists (including Nobel Laureate Francis Crick, the co-discoverer of DNA) have come to similar conclusions (Sagan, et al., 1973, pp. 45-46). Calculations such as these were the basis of Sir Fred Hoyle’s famous quote that the probability of spontaneous generation “is about the same as the probability that a tornado sweeping through a junk yard could assemble a 747 from the contents therein” (Hoyle, 1981, 294[5837]:105). Hoyle went on to say that he was at a loss to understand “biologists’ widespread compulsion to deny what seems to me to be obvious” (294[5837]:105).

The suppression of evidence against the theory of evolution is not limited to discussions of Miller-Urey type experiments, but those discussions are revealing. An objective scientist obtains and considers all available evidence. The demonstrated desire of evolutionists to suppress or ignore evidence that contradicts an atheistic worldview provides yet another example of how evolution is religion, not science. This suppression is not isolated, and is obvious in most high school and college level biology textbooks.

True science is the enemy of the atheist and evolutionist. In recent years, many evolutionists have attempted to shift the origin of life debate into areas where it is more difficult to apply operational science. One example is the theory that life somehow arose elsewhere in the Universe, and was then transported to Earth. Although postulating events “elsewhere in the Universe” does nothing to change the fundamental reasons why evolution cannot occur, the postulate fogs the issue enough to comfort those committed to finding an atheistic explanation for life’s origin.