About Duane Caldwell

Duane has served in many different capacities including pastor, elder, project coordinator and flight instructor. He is an ordained minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ by the Evangelical Church Alliance and holds a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, a Trinity International University school and a BS in Aeronautics from Parks College, St. Louis University.

Evolution and Software – A Fundamental Misunderstanding – or an Outright Fraud?

“Digital Snake Oil”

MIT Technology review published an online article titled, “Evolutionary algorithm outperforms deep-learning machines at video games[1] I wondered to myself what do they mean by “evolutionary”?  Though it’s impossible, could they really mean evolution as in Darwinian evolution, or were they just using evolution to mean successive changes in design, the way we might say something like “the evolution of the car has gone from the Model T to the Mustang”, in which case we don’t really mean Darwinian evolution – we’re really just talking about successive changes in the design of an item.

But as I read on, I was amazed to read that they were really talking about Darwinian processes: “This technique is based on the process that created the human brain—evolution.” (Darwinists believe the most complex biological organ known to man came about by ignorant, random, purposeless forces.) The technique they’re referring to is a new approach to computer programming, and the evolution they are referring to is in fact Darwinian evolution. They make that clear in the next sentences:
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Young earth or Old? The Wrong Approach to the debate that divides Christians

In the beginning… Gen 1.1

Editor’s note:  This is in response to Tom Gilson’s article “Young Earth or Old? The Debate That Divides Christians — But Shouldn’t[1] Normally I wouldn’t bother posting a comment on an article I’ve read to this site, but I’m making an exception here because 1. This is a topic I’ve written on a number of times on this site, so it’s fitting here and 2. For some reason my comment remains marked as “spam” and thus is not visible under Tom’s article, though I’ve indicated it’s not spam. And rather that speculate why it remains unpublished as of this writing I offer it to you here in its entirety, with a few added notes for clarification.
– Duane

Tom, you’re usually right on the mark, but here you’re advocating a very dangerous position. You’re basically advocating “leave it to the experts.” You’re stating this issue is so complex it requires “a high level of expertise in multiple fields, including biblical Hebrew, Ancient Near East literature and culture, and four or five major branches of science.” Continue Reading

Proteins, Panspermia, Predictions and Pavlov’s Scientists

Complex Organics Bubble up from Ocean-world Enceladus

Pavlov and his Scientists
“In the Spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love” Alfred, Lord Tennyson famously wrote.[1]
Likewise the hearts of scientists involved in origin of life studies turn to hopes of finding life somewhere in the universe other than earth. But theirs is not a “lightly turning” – it’s more like a conditioned response – the type of response you get from Pavlov’s dogs.
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Hell is for liars Part 2: The Heart of the Lie

Satan’s advice: Be proud

In part 1 of this series, I pointed out that God will not allow liars into heaven (Rev 21.8), and then pointed out some of the lies that will keep you from heaven. Some wanted to make a distinction between those actively lying by trying to deceive, and those duped by the lies.  But those who read closely understood that objection was answered implicitly with the analogy of poison: It doesn’t matter if you drink poison because someone lied to you and told you it was a harmless soft drink; Or because you’ve deceived yourself and are now convinced that the poison – say arsenic – is not really poison at all, and it won’t harm you, in fact it’s good for you so you consume lots of it. (Think “did God really say…” Gen 3.1) – regardless of what causes you to drink the poison whether you’re actively deceiving (yourself) or are merely deceived and believe the lie, if you drink it, you will die. Continue Reading

Hell is for liars

The Christian doctrine of hell:  conscious, painful, separation from God for all eternity for those who refuse God’s salvation. Perhaps the most difficult doctrine to deal with – for both Christians and non-Christians alike. This is such a difficult teaching there are plenty of people, cults and religions who outright deny it. After the denial of the deity of Christ, the doctrine of  hell is one of the first Biblical teachings to go.  In its place – everything from annihilation of the soul to universal salvation. Apparently the doctrine of hell is so scary even annihilation – eternal nonexistence –  is preferable to the Biblical doctrine of hell. According to one account, the Catholic doctrine of purgatory (a temporary place of punishment to pay for any un-forgiven sins) came about because punishment consisting of eternal wrath could not be countenanced by at least one early church father[1]. But the doctrine of purgatory is strictly a Catholic add on teaching – it’s not in the Bible. And it’s not what we’re talking about. Let’s be clear about what we are talking about. Continue Reading

Lies my evolutionist told me

No doubt the first thing someone will ask me is, “what are you talking about ‘my evolutionist’? People don’t have evolutionists!” To which I say sure they do. Everyone does. Perhaps it’s your biology teacher – the one you think is so great, who so diligently teaches the evolutionary line, refusing (perhaps for fear of losing her job) to even mention the problems of evolution, or the alternatives to it. Perhaps he’s that famous author you love to quote because he makes you feel intellectually fulfilled. Or perhaps he’s that smug cosmologist you find so funny because he likes to mock those who don’t toe his materialistic evolutionary line. Well article titles are supposed to be short and attention getting. And “Lies that my favorite evolution promoting – biology teacher, author or science guy – told me” is a bit too long for a title. I trust the title, short as it is, has served its purpose. There’s nothing else to see here so let’s move along to matters of substance.

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If the resurrection is true, why doesn’t everyone believe?

Prefect Mauritius Gallas speaks with the Apostle Paul in “Paul, Apostle of Christ”

A Meditation for Easter

Just-in-time for resurrection day (aka Easter), is the movie Paul, Apostle of Christ. In it, we find the apostle Paul (played by James Faulkner) in the jail of  Roman prefect Mauritius Gallas (played by Olivier Martinez). As I mentioned in my review, this film presents the thinking Christian with many questions to ponder. One of those questions is about the resurrection and is posed by the prefect, which if memory serves, is actually phrased as a statement along these lines: If the resurrection were the truth, then all would believe.  The movie has the apostle answering with a verse from his often quoted chapter on the resurrection (1 Cor 15.1-20):

“… if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless…” (1 Cor 15.14)

But that response answers the question, “is the resurrection true?” It does not really address the deeper issue the prefect appears to be getting at. That question is, Continue Reading

Review: Paul, Apostle of Christ

It’s AD 67,  some 34 to 37 years after the crucifixion of Christ. Nero, emperor of Rome has recently burned half the city in order to rebuild it according to his tastes. To cover his crime Nero scapegoats all Christians, and as the historian Tacitus tells us, Nero arrests, tries and convicts them not of arson, but of “hatred of the human race,” and puts them to death by “methods calculated to provide lurid entertainment for the public.”[1] Paul, the apostle of Christ is a key figure in the Christian faith and community. As such, Nero holds the Apostle Paul directly responsible for the fire, considering him the “chief enemy of Rome.”

Consequently when the movie opens we find the Apostle in prison awaiting his fate.  Luke, the physician and writer of the Gospel of the same name, and the Acts of the Apostles (commonly known as Acts) arrives in the city with a mission to save and retrieve the last of the writings of the apostle, determined that such important words not be lost. Continue Reading

The illogical atheist strikes again

Scientific American recently pondered, Is Lawrence Krauss a Physicist, or Just a Bad  Philosopher?  A very good question indeed considering the fact that the entire premise of Krauss’ recent book “A Universe from Nothing”  apart from being (bad) philosophy masquerading as science[1] is based on the logical fallacy known as “Equivocation.” Equivocation is when you use one word to mean two different things.  This typically results in false and misleading  conclusions – though sometimes the results are ironic and amusing as in Cher’s song “Dark Lady.”    In Cher’s song the fortune teller tells the singer “The man you love is secretly true to someone else who is very close to you.” Normally when you hear the phrase “very close to you” you think of an emotional connection. But by the end of the song, you realize the dark lady was referring to herself, and the “very close” part was physically close – as the two ladies were when the dark lady gave the fortune. The dark lady intentionally misled through the use of an equivocation. Krauss does the same thing – intentionally mislead through an equivocation. Continue Reading

Do Ancient Chronologies Challenge the Bible? Part 3: The Tower of Babel

The construction of the Tower of Babel

In parts 1 and 2, we saw how misunderstandings of ancient texts led to commonly held, but incorrect views.  Part one demonstrated why the early date of the exodus – 1446 BC – is the correct date. Part two demonstrated that commonly held Egyptian chronology is off and identified the amount of the error at the point of the exodus by identifying the pharaoh of the Exodus. (Hint: it’s not Rameses or any of the other commonly suggested pharaohs.) Here in part three we see a more egregious error: An outright denial of Biblical truth. Whereas in parts one and two those who came to the wrong conclusions likely did so honestly – by simply misunderstanding the text.  But there can be no mistake here: it is clear the error here can only be arrived at by an outright denial of the biblical text – and its related teachings – at many levels. Let me give you an illustration of why this must be the case.  Continue Reading