Calvary Church

4216 West 204th St, Matteson, IL – 708-481-8300
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  • Nephrons

    I am amazed by human anatomy. Recently, I studied nephrons, the functional unit of the kidney, each of which contains millions of these structures. The structures and their functions are too complex to explain here and a Google search on “glomerulus” will suffice to demonstrate the extreme complexity of these arrangements.

    It bothers some folks that I can study science, whether it be anatomy, ornithology or physics and end up stronger in my conviction about my belief in the Supreme Being that we call God, who sent his son, Jesus, to begin the process of setting our hearts back on the track for which they were originally intended through his death in our place. I have been told that I deny clear evidence if I can study science and come away with my faith intact, if not stronger.

    I would hold that I actually consider the physical realm with deepest regard but see it through a very different lens, which of course will lead to different conclusions. The atheist can look at the micro-structures of kidneys (nephrons) and ponder the wonders of evolutionary genetic modifications over hundreds of millions of years. But as I look at its design, I have to pause and worship. It is amazing in complexity and function and I see a wonderful intentionality to the structure that the atheist must deny. An evolutionary scheme must account for every structure and function of these microscopic networks having developed over millions of years of positive genetic mutations. I see this as an absurdity and that even with infinite time such complexity could not have been shaped by random “survival of the fittest” pressures. We are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made!

    I posted on Facebook, “I wonder how kidneys evolved?” Here’s one response: “Apparently, kidneys evolved once we came out of the sea, after we had bladders, as a gill mutation that benefitted filtering seawater for vertebrates.”  I called my friend on this, and he responded that kidneys are soft tissue that does not fossilize well.  They have no idea on this and can cite no evidence at all.  All that they have is bias conjecture because there can be no allowance for design.

    So anyway, why does any of this really matter?  It matters because design shows intended function, revealing a “the way it ought to be” mentality.  Once we admit design, we have to understand that “This was meant to function thusly,” which demands a designer who intended the function.  This intent or design goes way beyond mere nephrons to human society on the individual and corporate basis.  we were designed to function in certain ways and not in others.  Change the structure of a nephron and you ruin its function.  Change the base structure of people, and you ruin their function. 

    This is what sin has done.  It has changed the nature of our being and hence, our function is ruined and the outcome is ever more dysfunctional.  Society was not supposed to work like it now does with the constant struggle to keep us from succumbing to the law of the jungle.  

    It there is a design in our physical structure and a “way it ought to be” pertaining to our social/moral outworkings, then there is a standard, an absolute to by which right and wrong may be understood.  If the loop of Henle (part of the nephron structure) fails to operate correctly, we understand that there is something “wrong” with it because we know how it ought to operate.

    When we see the societal decay all around us, from the growth of the number of fatherless children to the increase of single teen pregnancy to the housing collapse, we innately know that something is wrong.  We know this because we have a standard, if only that which is written on our hearts.  Turning from this standard places us into the decay of the second half of Romans 1.   Without a standard, ethics become whatever the biggest thug says they are.  We have seen this before in the Stalinist USSR and the inner city streets of any city.

    We are broken and we barely function at all.  There is no solution in sight that will counter the unrestrained will that we desire.  We have no clothes and ridicule those who inform us of our naked display.  We hold our heads high, shaking our corporate fist at the very notion that we are accountable for the nakedness that we deny.

    If we are indeed “fearfully and wonderfully made,” then there is a standard, a blueprint  that applies to more than just nephrons and all of the other complex structures of our bodies.  The standard applies to the way we live our lives (our “peripatew,” for you Greekers) and we fall far short.  As a skilled doctor is able to correct defects in our bodies, so Christ can correct the defect of sin in our souls, so long as we submit.  Unless you tell the doctor that he can work on you, he cannot.  Unless you intentionally consent to let Jesus cure your sin caused demise, he will not. 

    We often speak of the consequences of sin as being confined to being cast into the Lake of Fire at the end, but we need to understand that sin effects far more than mere eternity.  It affects the quality of your work efforts as well as the rationale for them.  Sin affects the quality of your marriage, your family and all of your relationships.  Turning from it and to Christ brings one back to the standard of our being, which is the base for all relationships.  In Christ, the “fearfully and wonderfully made” aspect can apply to even marriages as husbands and wives learn the secret and habit of co-submission.

    When I look at the pattern of veins on the back of my hand or consider the stars or nephrons, I fully understand that there is a design and a purpose to all of this, and that I need to be aligned with it.  I need Christ and his fullness to be the standard of my life.

     

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