Italy Heading for “Demographic Crisis” Because Couples Aren’t Having Children

As birth rates across the West are declining largely because of secularist ideas, the Italian government is now incentivizing families to have more children.

It’s the same across the West (and many other nations as well): birth rates are rapidly declining. Italy reportedly has the lowest birth rate in Europe, and according to a new report, is headed for a “‘demographic’ crisis” due to the lack of children being born. Nearly one-quarter of the population is 65 or older, and deaths have surpassed births in Italy for well over a decade . . . and that’s just expected to continue to rise.

The report states:

The age structure of the population already shows a high imbalance in favor of the older generations and there are currently no factors that might suggest a reversal of this trend . . .

Demographic forecasts show that there is little likelihood of a turnaround in the number of births in the years to come.

The Italian government is trying to increase the birth rate by offering financial incentives to families with children, but will this help? Perhaps a little, but likely not much because the ultimate reason many couples are choosing not to have children isn’t economic—it’s religious!

You see, generations have been raised with man’s word as their foundation rather than God’s Word. By and large, the younger generations now hold to the religion of secular humanism. And in this religion, man is the authority (“god”) and man sets the rules. As part of indoctrinating generations into humanism, children and young people have been taught that their happiness is paramount, that children hold you back from education and a successful career, that children are expensive, that catastrophic climate change supposedly paints a bleak future, and that abortion is an essential human right. It’s a focus on self—selfishness. In other words, children aren’t gifts to be treasured—they’re a disposable “choice” some people will make.

It’s thinking like this that likely has resulted in the declining birth rate in Italy, as well as here in America (where only 18% of households are a married mother and father with children). But it’s not surprising! Satan hates the family.

The family is the first and most fundamental of all human institutions ordained by God. It is the unit God uses to transmit a spiritual legacy to coming generations and to impact the world with the message of God’s Word and the gospel.

The family is the first and most fundamental of all human institutions ordained by God. It is the unit God uses to transmit a spiritual legacy to coming generations and to impact the world with the message of God’s Word and the gospel. God made the first family (a true family) when he created the first male and female and told them to be fruitful and multiply (Genesis 1:28). The family has come under immense attack by abortion and the LGBTQ movement as so many politicians pass policies that are destructive to families.

As Christians, we should have a very different view of children. They are gifts, given to us by God, for us to teach and train in the way of righteousness.

And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:28)

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! (Psalm 127:3–5)

Get More Answers on Answers News

This item was discussed today on Answers News with cohosts Dr. Gabriela Haynes, Patricia Engler, and Bryan Osborne. Answers News is our twice-weekly news program filmed live before a studio audience and broadcast on my Facebook page and the Answers in Genesis Facebook page. We also covered the following topics:

  • Man smashes women’s sports records . . . again.
  • Can cancer research be replicated?
  • Quetzalcoatlus—what was it like?
  • And more!

Source: Answers in Genesis

Did a “Human Ancestor” Walk like Us but Climb like Apes?

Paleontologist Dr. Gabriela Haynes reviews a recent study on Australopithecus sediba and debunks the claim that it’s a “missing link” between apes and humans.

Australopithecus sediba—did it walk like a human but climb like an ape? According to a recent study, new lower back fossils of this so-called “human ancestor” supposedly “settles a decades old debate proving early hominins used their upper limbs to climb like apes and their lower limbs to walk like humans.” Now, we’ve said for years that A. sediba was just an ape. But does this new study show it was indeed a “missing link,” as the article claims?

Paleontologist Dr. Gabriela Haynes, one of the members of our research team, shares this about A. sebiba and the new study:

The new paper argues that Issa, the name given to the skeleton of this Australopithecus sediba specimen, walked somewhat like a human. However, just because it supposedly could have walked like a human does not make it a human or human ancestor. But because of the researchers’ evolutionary worldview, any slight resemblance, or sign of resemblance, leads them to conclude that man and ape shared a common ancestor.

Bipedalism is thought to have evolved gradually. Since evolutionists have the idea of things evolving over time, they need to find a transition process to fit in this story. But despite their hope, many details of this fossil find bring challenges to their evolutionary assumptions to the table.

The data points to A. sediba being an ape, but their forced interpretation on the feet and legs means that upright walking evolved in different ways during human evolution because they point to a very odd way of walking. An explanation for why walking evolved that way is a challenge for them.

Here are a few things to consider regarding this claim:

The pelvis of this genus, Australophitecus, was modified by a scientist in his lab, taking the shape of a humanlike hip, despite being an apelike hip.

The bones of the hand are very similar to those of orangutans, and dental analysis from Malapa Hominin 1 (MH1), an A. sediba specimen, shows similarities to chimpanzees.

The valgus angle (the angle at which the femur and the tibia meet at the knee) is not good evidence for bipedal locomotion since both orangutans and spider monkeys have the same valgus angle within the range of humans. That is a feature related to the way they walk on tree branches. As the study authors state: “However, other aspects of the bones’ shape suggest that as well as walking, A. sediba probably spent a significant amount of time climbing in tree.”

The fossil material—skull, cranial capacity, body proportions, teeth, and thorax (narrow upper chest)—for this species, Australopithecus sediba, is very apelike, and they all resemble other australopithecines (apes).

The inward curve of the lumbar spine was shown as one of the evidences that this animal could have walked upright, since this feature is typically used to demonstrate adaptations to bipedalism. However, the lumbar lordosis was based on a reconstruction of the pelvis. One prediction based on the lumbar vertebrae produced a strong lumbar lordosis (hyperlordosis). Another reconstruction done produced a less lordotic lumbar (hypolordotic), and a new reconstruction showed a humanlike one. “Therefore, current interpretations of lumbar curvature of A. sediba range from hyperlordotic to hypolordotic.” In other words, anything can fit in this parameter which shows there is a problem.

The new finds “suggest that MH2 (Australopithecus sediba specimen) was probably neither hypolordotic nor hyperlordotic and produces a combined wedging angles value more similar to modern humans than great apes.”

So, the data is hardly conclusive that this creature walked upright—let alone that it’s some kind of human ancestor! From a biblical worldview, we understand that creatures were created according to their kinds, so A. sediba isn’t some kind of missing link between apelike creatures and humans. Like other australopithecines, A. sediba is just an example of variety within the ape kind, and it likely spent much of its time climbing or walking around in trees, like apes do today. It’s only the evolutionists’ interpretations, based on their worldview, that creates an upright walking ancestor to man. They are so desperate to find a supposed missing link!

Get More Answers on Answers News

I discussed this item yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Patricia Engler and Dr. Georgia Purdom. Answers News is our twice-weekly news program filmed live before a studio audience and broadcast on my Facebook page and the Answers in Genesis Facebook page. We also covered the following topics:

  • More American adults say they aren’t having children.
  • Thanksgiving . . . time to celebrate creation?
  • Did human canine teeth shrink millions of years ago?
  • And more!

Source: Answers in Genesis

Are the Rules of Evolution Universal?

Evolutionists mistake natural selection for “amoeba to amphibian” evolution yet again in the tortured logic of a popular science article.

Evolution—will it happen in basically the same way, no matter where in the universe it occurs? An article from New Scientist argues yes, saying it doesn’t matter what “operating system” (e.g., DNA) that life uses: it will evolve via natural selection regardless. But what assumptions are going into such an assertion?

Well, the article describes evolution, which it calls “a fact of life,” in this way:

Here on Earth, organisms that just so happen to be better adapted, or “fit”, for their environment, perhaps by virtue of a fortuitous mutation, tend to survive longer and leave more offspring. The less fit leave fewer descendants and the unfit none at all. Whatever it was that made the winners fit thus accumulates in the next generation. . .

[For example,] if a gene in a colony of woodlice living under a dead log becomes more or less common for some reason, evolution has happened.

But what they’re describing isn’t evolution—it’s natural selection, the supposed mechanism for evolution. The process and the supposed mechanism are not the same thing! Natural selection is an observable process that works on information that’s already present; evolution requires the addition of brand-new genetic information to create new forms and features to turn an amoeba into an amphibian. And that’s the big (actually, impossible) problem they completely overlook in this article!

But what they’re describing isn’t evolution—it’s natural selection, the supposed mechanism for evolution. The process and the supposed mechanism are not the same thing!

The article states that for “spontaneous, sustained accumulation of complexity in a system” to occur, there must be three things present:

There must be variation, to give raw material for change in the first place; there must be differences in fitness, to give an advantage to change; and there must be heritability, to consolidate and pass on change over time. These three things are nothing more than the preconditions for natural selection – and wherever they come together, natural selection inevitably follows. [emphasis added]

They completely overlook where variation comes from! There’s no known naturalistic mechanism that can create brand-new genetic information. Natural selection doesn’t do it (after all, as they state, you need the “raw material,” i.e., variation in DNA, in order for natural selection to happen!), and they can’t just appeal to random mutations. Mutations are mistakes in already-existing DNA and are nearly always harmful or neutral.

Natural selection is an observable process. Creatures, using the incredible amount of genetic diversity God put into their DNA at the beginning, adapt to their environment. It has nothing whatsoever to do with evolution!

Get More Answers on Answers News

This item was discussed yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Bryan Osborne, Bodie Hodge, and Tim Chaffey. Answers News is our twice-weekly news program filmed live before a studio audience and broadcast on my Facebook page and the Answers in Genesis Facebook page. We also covered the following topics:

  • FBI raids house of mom who protested school board.
  • How does the human brain navigate?
  • Another attack on freedom of religion?
  • And more!

Source: Answers in Genesis

Good News! Abortions Reduced by Half in Texas in September

Texas enacted the “heartbeat bill,” and ~2,000 unborn babies were saved in September 2021.

It’s nice to be able to report some good news! In September, the state of Texas enacted a “heartbeat bill” that bans abortion after a baby’s heartbeat can be detected (usually around 6–8 weeks gestational age). Now while this bill certainly doesn’t go far enough—a heartbeat does not determine personhood—the bill has likely saved over 2,000 babies’ lives as abortion rates were slashed in half in the state during September!

We need to continue fighting for life in this nation—the lives of unborn children are depending on it. Taking a human life is murder.

We need to continue fighting for life in this nation—the lives of unborn children are depending on it. Taking a human life is murder. One way we can fight is by legislative change, but such changes are difficult, often don’t last long (a new administration can come in and reverse the policies), and rarely go far enough in protecting unborn lives (biblically and scientifically, a human life begins at the moment of fertilization). That doesn’t mean such changes are not worthwhile, but it’s not all we should be doing. We should be working to change hearts and minds on the issue with the truth of God’s Word (which is confirmed by observational science) and the gospel.

Here are three resources you can use to do just that:

  • Start conversations with our Fearfully & Wonderfully Made book. This beautiful coffee-table–style book features a detailed timeline alongside striking photographs of the life-like baby models in our powerful Fearfully and Wonderfully Made exhibit here at the Creation Museum. It’s a wonderful way to start engaging conversations with your children and others who visit your home—it’s a very eye-catching book! You, and those you engage with, will be fascinated by the miracle of life—from fertilization through birth.
  • Engage children in your church and community with the truth about the sanctity of life with our Zoomerang VBS. Our powerfully evangelistic Vacation Bible School program for 2022 is a sanctity of life VBS outreach! This fun-filled program, with a wonderful message of how each and every life is precious, is a great way to engage children regarding the sanctity of life.
  • Attend our upcoming Life Is Precious Conference—and bring others with you to challenge them with biblical and scientific truths! On January 28, our Life Is Precious Conference is taking place in the Answers Center at the Ark Encounter, south of Cincinnati. Get equipped with answers so you can stand for life. Registration is now open.

Praise the Lord for the 2,000 babies that have been saved from death in Texas, and continue to pray that parents would choose life, that our leaders would make decisions that protect the most vulnerable, and that pregnancy care centers would continue to flourish around the nation, offering hope and help in Christ’s name.

Open your mouth for the mute,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
Open your mouth, judge righteously,
defend the rights of the poor and needy.

Proverbs 31:8–9

Source: Answers in Genesis

Who Twists God’s Word for Abortion?

Washington Post columnist’s attempt to dehumanize preborn people by twisting Scripture and ignoring millennia of Christian teaching against abortion.

It’s amazing the way that those who want to justify immorality will use the Bible to do so! Often such people will take a passage that teaches one thing and twist it to “mean” the opposite of what the text clearly teaches. And a recent commentary in The Washington Post is a perfect example of such twisting of the Scriptures.

The authors argue that Christians are against “abortion rights” (there is no such thing—rights are endowed by our Creator, who said, “Thou shalt not murder,” Exodus 20:13) because of two verses from the Law (Exodus 21:22–23), which they believe are often mistranslated.

How absurd. Christians who believe the Bible are against abortion because of the totality of Scripture, which teaches that (1) humans are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14) in God’s image (Genesis 1:27); (2) murder is wrong (Genesis 9:6); (3) we’re to speak up for those who have no voice (Proverbs 31:8); (4) God hates those who shed innocent blood (Proverbs 6:16–17); (5) human life in the womb is described with the same terminology as children already born (Luke 1:41, 18:15); and (6) a human life has so much value that the Creator of the world stepped into history to pay the price for our sin so we might be saved from its consequences! While abortion advocates say we should sacrifice the life of a child for the desires of the mother, father, or others, the gospel says lay down your life for the good of another. That’s just the short version of why so many Christians are (or should be!) vehemently opposed to the slaughter of unborn children in their mother’s wombs!

But what about their argument that there’s a mistranslation in Exodus 21? AiG’s Tim Chaffey, the content manager for our attractions, thoroughly debunks that claim:

Put simply, The Washington Post commentary focuses on the wrong word in Exodus 21:22–23 and betrays an ignorance of Christianity. Since it’s in The Washington Post, we can have little doubt that they aren’t going to handle Scripture faithfully. In fact, I would go so far as to say that this paper wouldn’t publish a commentary supportive of pro-life using Scripture!

So, the argument in the article is that Christians cite only these two verses in Exodus to make a case against abortion:

When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out, but there is no harm, the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman’s husband shall impose on him, and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life.

Apparently, they’ve never heard of Genesis 1:27, Psalm 139, Luke 1, etc. Never mind the biological fact that the baby is a living human being from fertilization!

Apparently, they’ve never heard of Genesis 1:27, Psalm 139, Luke 1, etc. Never mind the biological fact that the baby is a living human being from fertilization!

Back to the commentary: the authors claim that the keyword in Exodus 21:22–23 is the Hebrew ‘ason, translated as “serious injury” (NET), “harm” (NKJV, ESV), “injury” (NASB), etc. The LXX (Greek Old Testament) translators, who were generally very good in the Pentateuch, chose the word exeikonizomai, which The Washington Post authors say should be translated as “from the image” (ek as “out of, from” and eikon as “image”). While, as they say, that is a literal rendering, we need to look at the context to see what it means. The various LXX versions in English that I have each translate it as “not fully formed” or “imperfectly formed.” In other words, the idea is that the child who is born has some sort of deformity (“not in the form of”). This is obvious given the imposition of the lex talionis (law of retribution, i.e., eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, etc.) in the following verses.

There really is no difference in meaning between the Hebrew and Greek. The Hebrew says that if the mother gives birth and the child has been seriously harmed, then the man who hit her shall pay eye for an eye, limb for limb, etc. The LXX says that if the mother gives birth and the child is deformed (meaning not fully formed), then the man who hit her will pay eye for an eye, limb for limb.

The real mistranslation in this verse occurs just a couple words earlier. (This is what I focused on in a 2011 article I wrote.) Some English translations (RSV, NRSV, and Amplified are the only ones I found) use the word “miscarriage” instead of referring to premature birth. By doing this, they make it seem as if it’s the mother’s injuries or life that are in view in the following verses. But this is not the meaning of the word or the point of the passage. It all has to do with what happens to the child. If there is no injury, then the man pays a fine. If the child is injured or dies, then the attacker pays eye for eye, life for life. You will notice that The Washington Post piece uses “miscarriage” in both “translations” of the passage, even though the word does not refer to miscarriage. The Hebrew and Greek both have a meaning of something like “the child(ren) go out.”

Think about how foolish the argument is in their article. The authors claim that Exodus 21:22 states either of the following:

Hebrew: If a man hits a pregnant woman so that she miscarries but there is no further harm (to the mother), then the man pays a fine imposed by the judges. (My 2011 article rebuts this view.)

Greek: If a man hits a pregnant woman so that she miscarries but the child is not deformed, then the man pays a fine. But if the (dead) child is deformed, then the man dies.

What? How ridiculous is that argument? If the child is already dead, why would it matter if the child is deformed or not? Obviously, the verse is not talking about a dead child (unless caused by the attacker). It is talking about a child who is born prematurely and may or may not be injured/fully formed as a result. Rather than being a verse that could be used in favor of abortion, this passage teaches that the unborn has identical value to the one already born.

How ridiculous is that argument? If the child is already dead, why would it matter if the child is deformed or not?

The writers of the article make other egregious errors. For example, they write:

Theology, based on that translation, soon followed. It’s easy to see how Saint Augustine, working out of the Septuagint, could develop his theory of ensoulment from here; a fetus early in formation, or in the early stages of gestation, did not have a soul, and thus it was not considered manslaughter to cause its accidental miscarriage. A fetus that was more “formed” did have a soul, so a person who caused its miscarriage would be, indeed, liable as though they had killed a fully formed person. Saint Thomas Aquinas, too, pointed to the moment of “quickening” — the moment at which fetal movement could be detected by the pregnant person — as the point of ensoulment.

Sorry, but Augustine wasn’t “working out of the Septuagint.” He struggled with Greek and didn’t know Hebrew. He may have been commenting on the LXX here, but he certainly wasn’t “working out of it” as his preferred translation. Later in life, he became a little better with Greek, but it is well known that he worked out of the Vetus Latina (the Old Latin prior to the Vulgate). The Vetus Latina was based on the LXX, so the statement isn’t necessarily 100% wrong, but notice how they are trying to connect a supposed mistranslation in the LXX (when really it means the same thing) to Christian theology, as though the church is basing its views on Augustine. In the Fearfully and Wonderfully Made exhibit at the Creation Museum, which makes a biblical and scientific case for the sanctity of unborn life from the moment of fertilization, we don’t ever cite Augustine or Aquinas. We cite Psalm 139; Genesis 1:26–27 and 9:6; Luke 1:43–44; Matthew 1:23; and Exodus 21:22–25.

Besides, three hundred years prior to Augustine, the Didache (Teaching of the Apostles, late first–early second century) stated, “[Y]ou shall not murder a child by abortion nor kill them when born” (Didache 2:2). The Epistle of Barnabas (late first century–early second—not the 16th century pseudepigraphal Gospel of Barnabas) states:

Thou shalt not doubt whether a thing shall be or not be. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord in vain. Thou shalt love thy neighbor more than thine own soul. Thou shalt not murder a child by abortion, nor again shalt thou kill it when it is born. Thou shalt not withhold thy hand from thy son or daughter, but from their youth thou shalt teach them the fear of God. (19:5)

But never mind those details! Christians are supposedly against abortion, the columnists argue, because Augustine supposedly relied upon a supposedly unreliable translation of Exodus 21:22, and if we were to just listen to the liberal theologians’ non-sensical understanding of the passage, then we would “see” that the Bible doesn’t speak against abortion at all.

It’s so sad that people are so willing to twist Scripture in a way that leads to the murder of babies.

God’s Word is clear—unborn persons are persons, made in God’s image, with equal value to persons who are further along in their development.

God’s Word is clear—unborn persons are persons, made in God’s image, with equal value to persons who are further along in their development.

You can discover more about the sanctity of each and every human life in our phenomenal pro-life exhibit at the Creation Museum, Fearfully and Wonderfully Made, or in our new book based on that exhibit (featuring stunning photographs of our beautiful models of babies at various stages of development), Fearfully and Wonderfully Made.

Source: Answers in Genesis

New Bank to Support Christian Charities, Not Planned Parenthood

According to Christian evangelist and entrepreneur Nick Vujicic, “90% of banks ‘give philanthropically toward abortion.’” Ninety percent! This means nine out of ten banks are donating towards the murder of unborn children by giving to places such as Planned Parenthood, a company that wants to kill as many children in the womb as they can and celebrate this as a “woman’s choice,” “reproductive freedom,” or “healthcare.” Well, in response to this, Vujicic is co-starting his own bank, potentially to be named ProLifeBank.

The bank’s website reads, “Noah built an ark to save lives. We’re building a bank to do the same.” Rather than supporting hands that shed innocent blood, this new “for-giving” (instead of “for-profit”) bank will donate “50% of net profits to Judeo-Christian-aligned-nonprofit organizations to further the Kingdom of God.”

It’s shocking that such a large percentage of banks chose to put some of their philanthropic monies towards the violent destruction of children in their mother’s wombs—there’s absolutely nothing “philanthropic” about the murder of helpless babies! But it’s a reminder that the broad way (the world) is against God.

And it’s also worth noting that PayPal, a large financial institution, recently announced it will “fight extremism” on their platform. By current definitions, those who believe what the Bible says about life, sexuality, and marriage will quite likely be labeled “extremists” by such anti-God groups.

We are seeing more people recognizing the need to deal with the anti-Christian worldview permeating businesses and companies and do something about it!

Source: Answers in Genesis

Answers News: October 6, 2021

Boston owner sells skinny house; Scans put Turkish Durupinar formation back into the headlines; Western Washington University segregates students based on skin color; Evolutionists argue about meaning of human footprints fossilized in New Mexico; William Lane Craig endorses old mytho-history heresy . . . and other stories reviewed during this October 6, 2021, broadcast of Answers News.

For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.

Matthew 24:37-39

Source: Answers in Genesis

Answers News: April 12, 2021

Saturn’s moons proclaim Jesus’ majestic power; Heidelberg evolutionists wants to change cephelod timeline by 30 million years; Reverend senetor tweets and deletes; Another story about gene transfer smells fishy; Alberta authorities fence off church property and use police to prevent assembly; Students sue US government in effort to defund Christian colleges who refuse to embrace LGBTQIA+ doctrine; Study confirms rapid adaptation in zebras . . . and other stories reviewed during this April 12, 2021, broadcast of Answers News.

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.

John 3:17-19

Source: Answers in Genesis

Who Leads Harvard?

Canadian weatherman’s dog joins broadcast; Booksellers apologize for true books; Palaeontologists spin teeth into three new creatures with backstories; Biologists find even less time for plants to evolve moisture-regulating stomata; President insists Texas abortion limits are “outrageous” and “extreme”; Dozens of Harvard chaplains unanimously elect atheist leader; Team led by graduate student claims that intelligently designed antibiotic treatment follows mindless evolutionary principles . . . and other stories reviewed during this September 8, 2021, broadcast of Answers News.

Source: Answers in Genesis

Who Blends Animal and Human DNA?

Connecticut bear steals package; Lawmakers fail to block research into human-animal hybrids; Survey shows correlation between worldview and belief in alien life; HuffPost tries to marginalize Ken Ham; Geologists try to explain why millions of years of rocks are missing; Harvard biologists publish a statistical model to prop up their evolutionary worldview; Fewer Americans assert a Christian worldview . . . and other stories reviewed during this August 30, 2021, broadcast of Answers News.

Source: Answers in Genesis