Chapter 13. “EYES,” “SEX,” AND “SPECIALIZED ORGANS”
NEXT TO THE BRAIN, the eye is the most wonderful of all God’s gifts to His creatures. Were all creatures doomed to live in perpetual darkness, life — if it were possible at all — would be a dismal and boring experience of prosaic emptiness. After a survey, even though limited, of the eyes of animals and man, one is impressed with this: each creature has been given eyes, by the Creator, that best suits its needs and station in life.
A hare’s eyes are so placed that it can look backward as well as forward without turning its head. It needs eyes like that, for it is the victim of predators, and must be able to see them to have a chance to escape. It has a complete 3600 circle of vision.
Hawks — day animals — can see the slightest movement of a tiny animal far below them in the grass. Hawks need keen sight to spot and catch their food.
Birds generally “have a sense of vision that enables them to see with greater precision than any other living creature. Sight is their dominant sense, helping them to catch the tiny darting insects that so often form their diet.”
The visual acuity of some birds’ eyes is from eight to ten times that of the human eye. The eyes of hawks, eagles and vultures that dive toward their prey, have a peculiar ability to change focus rapidly. This speedy change of focus enables birds to catch insects on the wing, and to keep a tiny rodent spotted in the few seconds of a rapid power dive. “Birds’ eyes are the finest and most remarkable of all the eyes of earth, being often both telescope and microscope.” (Thomas Shastid, ophthalmologist).
The very large eyes of the owl are admirably adapted to seeing in semi-darkness, so that the owl can catch insects that fly after dark. “the sensitivity of the owl’s eye in conditions of low light intensity has been shown experimentally to be about ten times that of the human eye.”
The owl, as well as other birds, has an extra eyelid — a complete transparent membrane that sweeps down across the surface of the eye, starting from the inner corner. It not only moistens the eyeball (making it unnecessary for the large feathered eyelids to blink shut), but also protects the eye when its owner is forced to fly through such hazards as wind blown dust and the closely laced branches of trees. This transparent nictitating membrane is drawn across the eyes of many birds whenever they are in flight, as it was designed to give protection.
This transparent membrane that serves such a useful purpose MUST of necessity be a complete and entire piece of equipment to serve its intended purpose. IT IS UTTERLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR SUCH A PRACTICAL ORGAN TO DEVELOP GRADUALLY. Hence, the only solution to the problem of how, why and when this “transparent membrane” originated, is in the fact of instantaneous creation.
The MUD-SKIPPER of the tropics, which spends part of its life in water and part on land, “has moveable, bulbous eyes which are adjustable to vision in the air as well as in the water. The fish has a special muscle which enables it to shift the lens close to the retina, so it can even produce a sharp image of distant objects.”
Instead of having a thin transparent membrane, as birds have, to cover the eye while in flight, a whale has another highly specialized adaptation. A whale is able to dive to great depths in the ocean. Its whole body is adjusted to and adapted for this purpose. At a depth of 100 feet, the pressure of the water is 60 pounds to the square inch; but at 4,000 feet it is 1830 pounds! The result is, deep-water fish can not come to the surface: some will actually explode! Nor can most surface fish dive to great depths: they would be pressured to death! But a whale is “at home” in both surface waters and in great depths of the ocean. The eye would be the first organ to suffer from such exposure to terrible pressure; so the Creator equipped the eyes of whales with “a sclerotic coat, very thick and strong,” to protect the eye when the whale goes into a deep dive.
When attacked by shark or sword-fish, the whale has only one effective defense: it dives to great depths — and if its pursuing enemies persist in accompanying the whale in its sudden plunge, they are killed by the pressure.
QUESTION: Since observation proves that most other inhabitants of the sea dare not leave their depth element, but will perish if they do, how can one explain the phenomenon of the whale’s ability to plunge to great depths and live? If it had to develop this ability through long ages, it certainly would have perished in every attempt. This unique ability had to be given to the whale when it was created. And how is one to explain that extra strong, heavy coating for the eye? Obviously the eye of the whale was made to withstand the pressure of great depths — and at the same time function near the surface!
If this ability to dive to great depths was gradually “evolved” why did not sharks and swordfish obtain the same ability?
“The fish with the ‘Built-in Bifocals’ “ — the Anableps dowei. This unusual fish lives in the quiet rivers and estuaries of the Caribbean. He feeds on titbits which float on the surface of the water; therefore it is necessary for him to see in the air as well as in the water: and God made him with that marvelous ability. Anableps dowei has only two eyes (not four), but each of his eyes has two pupils. As Anableps swims along the surface, he can see clearly both above and below the surface — through air and through water at the same time! This highly complicated arrangement must have been so designed!
The Anableps dowei is not the only animal that has “built-in bifocals.” The WHIRLIGIG BEETLE, which we may see on the surface of quiet water, is equipped to look up and down at the same time! Its eyes are divided so that the upper part sees the surface of the water and the lower part sees below the surface. There is a black layer of pigment between the two parts so that light from one does not affect the other. The entire arrangement is so highly complex, so practical for its intended purpose, so efficient, one must admit IT WAS DESIGNED AND MADE THAT WAY.
The eyes of the WOOD TURTLE are tipped downward to help it see what it is eating.
The camel — and other animals — have special built-in wind glasses! This desert animal, created for life and service on the desert, is equipped with a transparent third eyelid, which may be drawn at will over the eyeball without significantly impairing the sight. This protects the eye from sharp bits of sand in desert storms.
Most DEEP-SEA CREATURES possess luminous organs which they flash on and off as occasion demands, and so, though they live in total darkness, they have eyes, and are able to make use of them! This special arrangement was manifestly DESIGNED for them by the Creator. Such miracles in nature do not “just happen” nor “evolve through chance mutations.” What proof have we for that statement? This analogy: every complicated, working machine in the world today — such as the telephone, the radio, the camera, the typewriter, the automobile, the electric motor — was designed and made by some man; that is, by an outside intelligence. Complicated, complex working machines (whether living or inanimate) DO NOT “JUST HAPPEN” but in all instances are DESIGNED AND MADE BY AN INTELLIGENCE SUPERIOR TO THAT OF THE “MACHINE.”
Most land vertebrates have perfectly adapted and well-functioning eyelids that blink several times each minute to keep the eyeball clear and moist. Of all land vertebrates, only snakes have no eyelids at all. Their eyes are fixed in a permanent glassy stare. To protect the delicate, lidless eyes of the snake, there is a transparent shield permanently in place over the entire eye opening.
The position of the eyes in the head of an animal may show great specialization. The alligator (a reptile) and the hippopotamus (a mammal) both have their eyes set in a raised position on the tops of their heads. With these “periscope eyes” they can float in the water, almost entirely submerged, and still keep an eye on their surroundings. Clearly, this was so DESIGNED for them.
Different TYPES OF EYES
Not only do we observe in nature the phenomenon of perfect “adaptability” in the eyes of animals, but also we see great versatility in TYPES and KINDS of eyes.
Almost every one of the more than 38,000 species of vertebrate animals known to zoologists (4,000 mammals, 14,000 birds, 4,000 reptiles, 2,000 amphibians, and 14,000 fish) is born with functional camera-style eyes. There are a few of these animals, (mostly fish and salamanders) that live in total darkness (in the pools and streams of deep subterranean caves) that lose their sight as they mature.
Herein is a perfect argument against evolution: “Many thousands of years ago the ancestors of these blind cave species must have been carried in from the outer world by a surface stream.” Even though thousands of generations have come and gone, these fish are still born with eyes! The old Lamarckian idea of loss of characters through disuse has been exploded a thousand times. Through lack of use, the new-born fish soon lose their sight; but the essential nature of these fish to have eyes PERSISTS despite the fact that they have no use for their eyes.
The animal kingdom as a whole presents many different plans and styles of eyes. None however can compare with the wonderful “camera eye” possessed by all vertebrates.
“All vertebrate eyes are built much along the lines of a modern camera, but the all around precision and adaptability of the eye far surpasses our most modern and expensive cameras.” (Nature’s Wonders). (For a discussion of the marvels of the human eye, “camera” type — see Chapter 11, The Body of Man).
Beside the “camera” type eye possessed by all vertebrates, there are other methods used by the Creator to give sight to His creatures. *
* It is interesting to observe that the cuttlefish, squid, and octopus, closely related to the nautilus, have eyes equipped with true lenses, the most specialized eyes of any of the invertebrates.
This strange fact presents a powerful argument against evolution, for WHY should these three marine mollusks have such highly developed eyes, similar to those of the higher vertebrates, when they are far below the organizational status of the vertebrates? Admitting that GOD made them so, the problem is solved; but to evolution it remains unsolved.
We list the following types of eyes.
(1) The eye of the chambered nautilus lacks a lens, but functions well on the principle of the “pinhole camera,” where a very tiny opening gives a universal focus.
In the anthropods (which include all the insects, spiders, crabs, centipedes and millipedes), by far the largest and “most successful” group of invertebrates, is a fascinating variety of both “simple” and “compound” eyes.
(2) The spider’s eyes are known as “SIMPLE” eyes, because each has but ONE transparent lens to focus light rays on the sensitive nerve cells beneath it. If it be not as elaborate as the compound eye, the Creator has compensated spiders by giving them eight of these simple eyes. They are placed strategically in two rows at the front of the head.
Most millepedes have one or more simple eyes on each side of the head.
The CYCLOPS, a fresh-water copepod, has one simple median eye.
(3) In the insects that have COMPOUND eyes, there is great variety. Some insects have enormous eyes that nearly encompass their heads. The common housefly has large compound eyes. The dragonfly represents the extreme, as it needs the best sight possible to capture flying insects on the wing. The compound eyes of the dragonfly have 30,000 facets! Each of these 30,000 units has its own light condensing apparatus! Next to the camera eye, the compound eye is most efficient. However, no man knows the exact nature of the image an insect gets from its elaborate compound eyes.
(4) Most insects have a combination of both simple and compound eyes. For example, the GRASSHOPPER has five separate and distinct eyes, three small simple eyes and two large compound eyes prominently placed at the sides of the head.
(5) Some animals (crustaceans) like the crayfish and the lobster have compound eyes that are on stalks. These eyes can be moved around for better vision.
(6) The sphendon (lizard-like reptile of Australia, about two feet long) has a third eye, or pineal eye, on the top of its head!
(7) There is also great variety in the way the pupils of eyes contract. In man’s eyes there is a round pupil, and the opening automatically expands or contracts to let more or less light into the retina. In the domestic cat the enormous pupil opening will close to a vertical slit in the presence of bright light. On the other hand, the pupil opening in the eye of a horse takes the shape of a horizontal bar. Lizards and other lower vertebrates reduce their pupil openings “to a great variety of odd shapes and patterns.”
Blind evolution would not be able to develop all of these various styles of eyes, all of which function perfectly.
MORE MIRACLES — AND MORE PROBLEMS FOR THE EVOLUTIONIST
Let us contemplate a few more “miracles” about “eyes” in nature, and the problems they present to the evolutionist.
(1) Who can explain why the eyes of the Star-gazer (a fish of the Weever species) are placed horizontally on the upper part of its head, “in a position with but few parallels in nature,” so that it is always looking up at the sky? Because of this, it is given its scientific name Uranoscopus.
The Star-gazer completely buries itself in the sand on the ocean floor, so that only its eyes are visible.
Starting with the average fish with its eyes on the sides of its head, evolution has to explain why and how the peculiar eyes of the Star-gazer were evolved. With eyes normally placed, the Star-gazer would not be able to bury itself in the sand and see; in fact it would have no inclination to act as the Star-gazer now acts. And, one must conclude, the only reason the Star-gazer acts as it does, and buries itself, is because it has eyes on the top of its head! In other words, “evolution” didn’t make the Star-gazer as it is; the Star-gazer acts as it does because it was made that way in the beginning!
(2) The Starfish is an oddity if ever there was one. WHY would any sea creature “evolve” into such an apparently absurd shape — as far as “sea-life” shapes go — as a Starfish?
The common species of Starfish have five arms or “rays,” on the under side of which are hundreds of tube feet; and on the end of each arm is an eye! The Starfish is unable to swim but it walks along the bottom very slowly, over sand and shells, through a most ingenius system. It can go in any of the five directions its arms point to.
What did this strange creature evolve from? And WHY? The evolutionist has no logical answer. What was the starting point from which finally came the Starfish? Who could possibly trace the sequence of “chance mutations” that finally brought to pass the Starfish with an eye at the end of each of its arms? It is far more reasonable to believe the Starfish was made as it is, and has always been as it is!
(3) Many snails have eyes at the ends of tentacles, which they can extend or compress, much as a telescope is lengthened or shortened. With these eyes at the ends of tentacles a snail can “look around a corner” without exposing its body. (Nature Magazine).
This unusual ability to see with eyes at the end of stalks is no doubt a great advantage to the snail. But how could such an ingenius device be brought into existence in such a lowly animal by “chance mutations?” It is as easy to believe that the 100-inch telescope on Mt. Wilson “just happened” as to believe that such miracles, and such well-planned devices in nature, are the result of blind chance. Any one who has focused a telescope knows how careful the adjustment must be before the image is clear. Who gave the lowly snail the uncanny ability to see with its adjustable eyes, that can be lengthened or shortened at will? The successful use of such eyes involves optical and engineering principles that can be solved only by the Master Workman!
(4) The eye of a Pigmy shrew is little larger than the head of a pin; but it has the same camera-like eye arrangement as the grapefruit-sized eye of a great blue whale! Such an eye (as the Pigmy shrew has) must have been made by a mechanical Genius!
(5) The sole, or turbot, like the Stargazer, has its eyes directed upward. The fish lies in the sand at the ocean bottom in the daytime.
“They have extraordinary eyes that move in all directions, as though mounted on a universal swivel. Their eyes, with a rotary movement, will follow the movements (of an enemy above them); and those movements very often betray their presence.” (The Underwater Naturalist; p. 219).
“Only at night do these fish search the surface of the mud, looking for worms. As this takes place at night and as their eyes are directed upwards, vision plays no role in their search, which is conducted purely by a sense of smell and by a sense of touch, from. . . .special filaments on the under surface of the head.” (The Underwater Naturalist; p. 219).
Question: if evolution is responsible for this state of affairs, didn’t it make a serious mistake in placing this fish’s eyes where it could not see the food it needs? Until it developed those special “smell” and “touch” filaments, the poor fish would starve to death! Who designed the “swivel” eyes of the sole? And Who gave it the sensitive “smell” and “touch” filaments?
(6) A Chameleon’s eye “is one of the most remarkable organs exhibited by any terrestrial animal.” And yet it is strangely limited.
“The Chameleon has large protuberant eyes, covered with thick granular lids, perforated only by minute apertures for the pupils. THE TWO EYES CAN BE MOVED INDEPENDENTLY OF EACH OTHER. One can look straight ahead, while the other looks backward or up. . . .Why this doubling of the field of vision should accompany such excessively minute openings to the lids is a mystery.”
If evolution alone were responsible, it would NOT have put a handicap on the otherwise marvelous eyes of the chameleon! WHY WERE SUCH WONDERFUL EYES, “ able to move independently of each other” — thus securing for the owner two entirely different fields of observation — SO DRASTICALLY LIMITED BY PLACING THEM BEHIND HEAVY GRANULAR LIDS WHICH HAVE ONLY “MINUTE OPENINGS?” God, who does all things well, designed both their wonderful eyes and their limiting lids. “Handicaps” like this are so designed by the Creator who works for the welfare of all nature — not just one animal. “Evolution” we are told works for “the survival of the fittest.” Deliberate and well-placed HANDICAPS are perfect evidence that nature is God’s handiwork.
(7) The large eyes of the honeybee make use of the ultraviolet portion of the sun’s spectrum to see with. Man’s eyes are not so made. As this gives a greater vision, why did “evolution” drop this phenomenal ability from the eyes of man? As it is a distinct advantage “natural selection” would have clung to it! Evolution has no adequate explanation of such phenomena.
(8) The eye of the horseshoe crab seems to have a unique feature not found in other animals.
“The eye of the horseshoe crab is amazingly simple. It is a compound eye composed of individual units (ommatidia), similar in type to the eyes of insects. But unlike any other known animal, the horseshoe crab has a separate nerve fiber proceeding from each of these units toward the brain.” (L. J. Milne, in “Scientific American”).
The eye of the horseshoe crab is DIFFERENT from all animals below and above it on the “evolutionary ladder.” This presents a real problem for the evolutionist. From whence did the horseshoe crab get this unique system of vision? The fact is, the Sovereign, Almighty Creator made it so!
(9) The kingfisher and some other birds have a special area in the retina called the “fovea,” in which the cells that line that area each have a private nerve fiber to the brain. This gives maximum visual acuteness to that limited area (the fovea). If a bird desires special visual acuity it turns its head or eyes until the image is focused in the fovea. Some creatures actually have TWO of these fovea in each eye. With this magnificent system, not only can they obtain more acute sight, in a limited area, but also they can actually (by using both fovea areas) get a “bifocal” effect, and gain an accurate impression of both distance and depth. Owls use their eyes binocularly at all times.
“The kingfisher is one of the strangest users of the two-fovea system. Its eyes can notice both an object in the air and the exact position of a fish below the water surface, and also it can follow the fish accurately after its sudden dive into the pond.
“Vision in the air and vision in water are entirely different. When water comes into contact with the clear cornea it takes away all visual functions of the cornea. . . . (Therefore) in water the lens must act alone. Hence an eye that has normal vision in water is pathetically near-sighted in air. . . .The kingfisher (can see well in air and under water) through possession of an egg-shaped lens. When the bird uses its eyes monocularly with one of the two fovea in each eye, any prospective prey is kept in sharp focus through one end of the peculiar lens.
“But when the kingfisher enters the water, and its ‘cornea’ disappears, the image of the fish is formed through another axis of the lens on the second fovea of each eye. The fish is seen binocularly straight ahead of the beak, in good focus, and the bird is able to complete the catch!
“The kingfisher thus has two eye systems in one — an underwater visual arrangement. . . .and an aerial survey system with high visual acuity. . . “ (See June, 1950, “Science Digest,” p.16, 17).
Who can believe that this amazingly intricate and highly ingenious system of sight, granted to the kingfisher to enable it to catch fish for food, is the result of “random mutations?” Here is a highly complex system of sight, involving elements entirely lacking in human sight, that equips this bird for its particular station in life and enables it to keep its prey (moving swiftly in water) in sight and in focus as it dives toward it from the air above!
Drop a penny in a bath tub full of water. Look at it from an angle, then reach for it, and you will miss it! Man’s eyes give a false impression of the exact location of objects under water!
It is clear, the Creator gave each creature eyes suited to its environment and manner of life; and in most instances, the eyes He gave are so complex and vision is obtained through such an involved, complicated mechanism, one must admit this is the work of God!
Read again the description of the wonders of the human eye, found in Chapter 11; then consider the marvels of the eyesight of the kingfisher, the owl, the dragonfly, the horseshoe crab, the lobster and the grasshopper; then ask yourself if it is reasonable to believe that such marvels came about entirely by “chance mutations” and “natural selection.” It is easier to believe that a Mergenthaler Linotype machine, with its thousands of parts and hundreds of delicate adjustments, “just happened” than to believe such a complex organ as the eye (either simple, compound or camera-type) was gradually developed through “chance mutations.” Evolution is not only merely a theory, unproved and unproveable, but also it is a very illogical theory.
When once a person admits the presence in the Universe of an Almighty Supreme Being, who created all things, all such marvels and miracles as the eye, the brain, the wonders of the atom, the mystery of gravitation, etc., are readily accounted for.
THE FASCINATING MARVELS OF SEX
The primary method of multiplication of unicellular life is by simple cell division, called “binary fission” by biologists. For some unknown reason the cell of a protozoan like the ameba splits in two and makes two identical cells. If all higher forms of life evolved from unicellular forms of life, as evolution teaches, and these original unicellular forms of life were asexual, and cell division of these primordial protozoa invariably produced two duplicates of the original cell, how could sexless forms of unicellular life ever give rise to the higher forms with sex?
True, mutations in sexless forms of life do occur, but they are mutations that stay within narrow bounds. For sexless forms of life ever to evolve by mutations into sexual forms is utterly impossible,
Mutations of organisms which do not reproduce sexually give rise to “clones,” the descendants of a single individual. A gene which mutates in a sexless individual cannot pass outside of the “clone,” and thus can not be as widely distributed as mutations occurring when there is sex.
“The spectacular evolution of plants and animals into myriads of diverse forms probably could not have taken place without the process of sexual reproduction. The living forms that do not reproduce sexually but that carry on the life of their species by dividing, budding, or other means MAINTAIN A FAIRLY CONSTANT HEREDITY.” (The Mystery of Sex, in “Popular Science,” p. 743).
Here then evolution faces an impasse. Evolutionists believe there was a time when there was no reproduction by sex. They teach that reproduction by means other than sex (even though there are mutations) maintains “a fairly constant heredity” — that is, succession of life with very few changes. HOW THEN DID “SEX” EVER GET STARTED? Running in the deep groove of asexual uniformity, there was no chance, through natural causes, ever to get out of that groove.
To believe that both “male” and “female” elements developed concurrently by “chance mutations” is an absurdity. Obviously, sex — the co-ordination of two unlike elements — had to be PLANNED, and DESIGNED, and CREATED that way.
Most cell division in unicellular protozoa, like amebas, goes on generation after generation for endless millennia without any change whatever. In some asexual forms of life, like certain bacteria, we know there are mutants, and “varieties” develop, but the essential nature of the bacteria remains unchanged, generation after generation, and there is NO transformation from one genus into another.
We know there are one-celled organisms that reproduce sexually — but they obviously were made that way in the beginning. An asexual system could never, of itself, develop into a sexual system, WITHOUT THE INTERVENTION OF AN OUTSIDE GUIDING FORCE. The fact of the presence of “sex” in life demands the work of an Intelligent Creator.
All of life that shows “design” and “purpose” is the result of creative Intelligence. Consider an illustration: all will admit that if one were to find a bolt with machine threads on one end, in the iron fields of Michigan, that some one had to mine the ore, smelt it, and then form that bolt and thread it. And then to find near the bolt a threaded nut that exactly matched the size and thread size of the bolt, would give one a complete useful product. For either a threaded bolt or a threaded nut to appear “spontaneously,” without the intervention of outside intelligence would be an unheard of thing. Every highly complicated device in nature that shows design and purpose must of necessity be the work of an Intelligent Designer. The miracle and marvel of sex in life proves the presence of an outside Intelligence who designed and created it all.