Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Harvard-Educated Biologist Re-opens Shut Case in Provocative New Book ‘Replacing Darwin’

Nathaniel Jeanson, Ph.D., challenges 150 years of thinking on the origin of species with new scientific discoveries

 PETERSBURG, Ky., Sept. 26, 2017 – Since Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species” was published in 1859, entirely new fields of science have been born and matured – fields which hold the keys to the origin of species. With a Ph.D. in cell and developmental biology from Harvard, Dr. Nathaniel Jeanson is uniquely qualified to investigate what genetics reveals about origins, and has released his findings in the book “Replacing Darwin: The New Origin of Species.” Due from Master Books next month, “Replacing Darwin” offers a revolutionary approach to the study of origins with a potential impact as big as Darwin’s.

replacing_darwin_cover_small“On the Origin of Species” is considered one of history’s most influential books and has become the foundation of evolutionary biology. This new work asks readers to consider: If Darwin was looking at the same evidence today using modern science, would his conclusions be the same?

“Since 1859, we’ve had time to reevaluate [Darwin’s] picture. A global community of millions of scientists can pool their resources and build on one another’s work,” Jeanson states. “The cumulative observations of these scientists have built an unprecedented body of knowledge on the diversity and operation of life.” In “Replacing Darwin,” Jeanson argues that this knowledge has rewritten the long-standing explanation for the origin of species.

Though a work of scholarship, “Replacing Darwin” is accessible. Jeanson uses an analogy to which all readers can relate – a jigsaw puzzle – to illustrate the quest for the answer to the mystery of the origin of species. He contends that Darwin reached his conclusions with only 15 percent – or less – of the total pieces of the puzzle. In addition, Jeanson argues that Darwin tried to piece together his findings without the constraints of edge pieces and corner pieces. If an actual jigsaw puzzle were put together under these conditions, would the participants have had any chance of success?

Jeanson’s book begins its account after the publication of the first edition of Darwin’s book in 1859. Several years after Darwin made his bold claims, the Austrian monk Gregor Mendel, who studied inheritance and the origin of traits, published his discoveries, which remain textbook science to this day. In the early 1900s, American scientist Walter Sutton connected chromosomes to Mendel’s decades’ old discoveries. The next question for the scientific community was how specifically the chromosomes contained the information for traits. The search led to DNA and James Watson’s and Francis Crick’s famous discovery of the double helix in 1953.

“The physical basis for heredity – the nature of the code of life – was not uncovered until nearly 100 years after Darwin wrote ‘On the Origin of Species,’” Jeanson writes. “Without this genetic knowledge, could Darwin have speculated intelligently on the origin of species? If he had no idea how traits were coded and inherited each generation, could he have identified the origin of a particular trait? Before the advent of genetics, would his explanation have had any hope of being accurate? When Darwin wrote his most famous work, he took a scientific risk of massive proportions.”

Jeanson argues that Darwin’s risk was magnified by several developments outside the field of genetics. Darwin’s original arguments leaned heavily on the fossil record, on the geographic distribution of species, and on comparisons of these species at the anatomical and embryological levels. Jeanson chronicles advances in each of these fields that recast Darwin’s original conclusions.

These advances served to underscore the significance of recent genetic findings. When the human genome was finally sequenced in 2001, it became possible for the first time to reach the answer to the bigger origins question. “Since traits are ultimately encoded by DNA, the origin of species is a question of the origin of DNA differences within and between species,” Jeanson explains. “The answer to this question reveals whether a fish can spawn a spider – and whether it ever did… In other words, the answer to the origin of species can be uncovered for the first time right now.”

Building on this groundwork, Jeanson goes on to explore how DNA works, modifying traits from generation to generation until a new species appears. By studying the timing of this rate of change for a variety of species whose DNA has been sequenced, he developed mathematical formulas to predict how long before a new species would develop, as well as the number of DNA changes we should have been able to observe in the millions of years (according to the evolutionary timetable) since humans appeared on the scene.

Again and again, his calculations, based on observable, quantifiable change, failed to fit what we see in the world today when multiplied over millions of years. However, when computed according to a new timescale, the numbers matched.

“In at least five independent measurements of the mutation rate – in humans, roundworms, fruit flies, water fleas and yeast – the evolutionary model failed to predict modern DNA differences,” Jeanson’s revolutionary study reveals. “Consequently, the evolutionary failure becomes all the more difficult to dismiss as a statistical or biological anomaly. Instead, the results suggest a systematic problem with the evolutionary model.”

Jeanson concludes that there is much more to be discovered in this field, with the genetics of millions of species yet to be determined and the mutation rates of each of these species to be measured. He expects that connections will be found between many other species within a family (or genus), but that species from different families (or genera) reside in completely different puzzles sharply disconnected from one another, rather than pointing to universal common ancestry.

With this new book, the scientific revolution to overturn Darwin may have begun.

More information is available online at https://www.masterbooks.com/replacing-darwin.

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 NOTE TO EDITORS:  To request an interview with Dr. Jeanson, a review copy, or additional media resources, please contact Melany Ethridge at melany@alarryross.com or via phone at 972-267-1111 ext. 204. 

NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible Equips Christians to Defend their Faith

God’s Word Gives Believer ‘Confidence for Such a Time as This’

 DALLAS, Sept. 7, 2017 — The new NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible (Nov. 7, 2017, Thomas Nelson, ISBN-13 9780310080367, $49.99) unpacks the complex issues of the day within the framework of biblical principles and timely truths of Scripture.

NKJVUSB_cover_magnetmailThe study Bible, subtitled “Confidence for Such a Time as This,” is intended to give readers clear answers to today’s most complicated and controversial questions covering topics ranging from issues of Church and State to the nature of world religions, and from bioethics and environmentalism to prejudice and the state of the family. The New King James Version™ (NKJV) uses contemporary English while maintaining the literary quality of the King James Version.

Features of the study Bible include more than 60 quotations from historical figures that apply to contemporary problems, profiles of giants of the faith who overcame great odds, and articles showing the relevance of Bible passages to life in the 21st century.

The 220-plus articles placed near relevant Scripture passages are gleaned from the Kairos Journal, a website founded by Emmanuel and Camille Kampouris that equips pastors to be voices of moral and spiritual renewal in our country. At a time when studies show most Americans identify themselves as Christians but aren’t biblically literate, the Unapologetic Study Bible promotes a return to biblical values.

“Our world is increasingly hostile to the truth of God’s word, so Christians must be equipped with Scripture and the lessons of church history,” said Dr. Mark Coppenger, managing editor of the Kairos Journal. “This study Bible doesn’t shy away from the tough topics, and Christians shouldn’t either.”

Over 40 giants of the faith are profiled including Harriet Tubman, a Christian who was a conductor on the Underground Railroad; David Wilkerson, whose ministry to troubled youth in New York was chronicled in “The Cross and the Switchblade;” Fred Shuttlesworth, a pastor who was one of the heroes of the Civil Rights Movement; and Eric Liddell, the Olympic champion from the movie “Chariots of Fire” who died on the mission field in China.

“Christians don’t need to apologize for what they believe,” Coppenger said. “Through the prophet Amos, God set a plumb line—a divine standard against which God tests us—amidst his people. That’s what we have tried to do. In an age marked by uncertainty, this study Bible has the tools Christians need to defend their faith.”

In addition to Coppenger, who is a professor of Christian apologetics at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, other contributors to the study Bible include:

  • Dr. Michael McClenahan, professor of systematic theology, Union Theological College, Belfast, Northern Ireland;
  • Dr. C. Ben Mitchell, Graves professor of moral philosophy and provost and vice president for academic affairs, Union University, Jackson, Tennessee;
  • Dr. Gregory Alan Thornbury, president, The King’s College, New York;
  • Emmanuel Kampouris, retired chairman and CEO of American Standard, currently serving on the boards of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of N.J. and Amway Corp.;and
  • Peter Riddell, vice principal (academic) at the Melbourne School of Theology, Australia

The NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible will be available from retailers nationwide November 7, 2017. For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2hQPmhc.

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NOTE TO EDITORS: To arrange an interview, please contact Melany Ethridge at 972.267.1111 or melany@alarryross.com.