The Horseshoe Crab – a “Living Fossil”

Posted on Jan 11, 2013 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  Recently while walking along a Florida beach on the Gulf of Mexico, I found the remains of several horseshoe crabs. I was quite excited, because just a week before I had been able to observe live horseshoe crabs at the Florida Aquarium in Tampa. Here on the beach I had an opportunity to actually hold and study them. The outer body of the horseshoe crab consists of a hard shell in three sections. The front section protects the soft parts on the underside – the eyes (2 primary compound eyes, and 7 secondary “simple eyes”, 2 of which are on the underside), legs (5 pair used for walking, swimming or moving food into the mouth), pincers, mouth, brain, and heart. The middle section is hinged to the front section and protects the gills and reproductive organs. The third section is the long, straight, rigid tail it uses to flip itself over when turned upside down. Horseshoe Crab Trivia: It is not a “true crab” (it’s not a crustacean), but an arthropod and is classified with scorpions, spiders, and extinct trilobites. Although they scurry around on the shallow ocean floor, they swim upside down, inclined at about 30° to the horizontal. They find their food (worms, mollusks, crustaceans and small fish) on the soft and sandy or muddy bottom. Rather than hemoglobin in their blood, they have hemocyanin, which contains copper, making their blood blue in color. Their blood contains a protein used to screen drugs and vaccines for contaminants.   Evolutionary scientists call the horseshoe crab a “living fossil” because fossils of the horseshoe crab (supposedly 450 million years old) have been found that are identical to the living horseshoe crab we find today. Hmmm?  Supposedly millions upon millions of years of mutations and natural selection and yet there is no evidence for evolutionary change in this critter. The horseshoe crab is not a unique “living fossil”. We also find hundreds of other animals and plants that have stayed the same over supposed millions of years. A few examples are sharks, crinoids, Wollemi pine trees, ginkgo trees, tuataras, crocodiles, alligators, coelocanth fish, squids, shrimp, chambered nautiloids, brachiopods, clams and dragonflies. The evidence of “living fossils” shows very little to no change in these living creatures. “Living fossils” make no sense for the evolutionary model or the long ages required for evolution.   Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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Extreme Low Tide on the Gulf Coast

Posted on Jan 2, 2013 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  My wife and I are collectors. We love to collect seashells and fossils. So when we were in Fort Myers Beach, Florida, we hit the beach almost every day looking for new types of seashells we have not found on other beaches in our travels. Early one morning, my wife met another collector who shared that there would be an extremely low tide in two days time. Because more of the beach is exposed during low tides, we find that is the best time to find shells. What we found during the extreme low tide was absolutely amazing. We found Florida fighting conchs lying all over the beach … alive. I guess I had always thought they were like snails and just crawled around on the ocean floor, but it turns out they are like clams and live buried in the bottom. During low tides, they dig out of the sand and lie on the top of the sand until the next high tide covers them with water. One of the shells I always like to find are Lettered Olives, and again I thought they just crawled along on the seafloor. But seeing them in action, I learned they are also burrowers. The tidal pools left by the very low tide were a wealth of new discoveries. By wading very slowly through the shallow water, we were able to see many sea creatures that you normally don’t get to see during normal tides. We saw 5 different kinds of crabs, sea anemones, sea urchins (disguised with shells and leaves stuck to its spines), sea worms, sea stars, baby flounder, baby sand dollars, and many other sea critters. On the beach that day was a great diversity of life, yet it was such a small, minute part of God’s overall creation. It brings to mind Psalm 40:15 – Many, O LORD my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.   Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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Seed of Salvation at Epcot

Posted on Dec 18, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

My mother, wife and I have just gotten back from a wonderful 2 week vacation to Florida. While there, my mother treated my wife and I to a day trip to the theme park Epcot, part of Walt Disney World, near Orlando, Florida. We began the day by visiting several attractions in what is called ‘Future World’.  As we traveled through a ride/exhibit called Spaceship Earth, I was saddened, but not really surprised that we were presented with our “evolutionary” beginnings. It is very hard to go anywhere in the secular world without hints, suggestions, or declarations of the evolutionary worldview. Therefore, when it came to the next attraction, Universe of Energy – “a ride with Ellen DeGeneres as she goes back to the dinosaur era “, I decided to pass … after all, I have seen almost all of the stuff Disney has put out about dinosaurs, and it sure does not fit with what I believe. After several more ride/exhibits through ‘Future World’, we traveled on to ‘World Showcase’, where the cultures of many different countries are portrayed. We were able to see several well done presentations, learning a little more about each culture; however, I found the main focus at each area seemed to be to get people to spend lots of money on trinkets, food, and drink.  But it is very easy not to spend money if you don’t have any, and the good news … the drinking fountains and toilets were free. The real highlight of Epcot had to be the evening “Candlelight Processional” at an outdoor amphitheater. There a full orchestra (complete with strings, winds and drum), accompanied with a splendidly robed choir of 300 wonderful voices, gave an hour long musical rendition of the favorite Christmas carols. Between each song, Andy Garcia, a well known Cuban/American Hollywood actor, read from the gospel of Luke about the birth of Jesus. Near the end of the presentation, Mr. Garcia shared the gospel message (a very watered down version, but still the gospel message). The grand finale was Handel’s Messiah (also known as the Hallelujah Chorus). This great song of praise had the crowd of at least a 1000+ standing to their feet. I know that it is tradition to stand for this song, but no one is forced to sing along … yet the vast majority of the spectators were singing along with the choir, loud and strong! So, was the seed of salvation planted on any fertile hearts that evening? That is a question only God can answer, but I do know that even with a watered down message, seeds were planted. And for that I give praise!   Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page...

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Not a Minority After All

Posted on Dec 5, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  Because I believe in God as the Creator, I must be in a very small minority. At least that might be a conclusion one arrives at if you were to believe everything the textbooks, the media, the Hollywood movies and television portray – that mindless evolution has made everything! However, a recent 2012 Gallup Poll (a division of Gallup that regularly conducts public opinion polls in more than 140 countries – see wikipedia for more information on Gallup Inc.) revealed that a majority of the populace believes that God created people in their present form. Those who believe in God as the Creator are larger in number than those who believe in atheistic evolution or theistic evolution (evolution directed by God). See their site for more information on the poll. It is encouraging knowing that the battle has not been lost, and those who are on the battleground of the Creation/Evolution issue are making a difference.   Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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Those Important Ants

Posted on Nov 21, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  My wife has a real problem with ants that move into the house. She has ant traps tucked all over the house (hiding them as best she can from the grandkids) and anti-ant powder sprinkled next to the foundation wherever she suspects they might sneak inside. It is not that she dislikes ants … she just doesn’t like them getting into our food supply. I am not an ant expert, but I have identified 5 different varieties of ants on our property. Four of these live in the ground … very tiny black ants (these are the ones that like to move into the house), medium size black ants, large black ants and large red ants. We also have at least one variety that is very large and lives in our globe willow tree (carpenter ant?). The sheer number of ants in the world is truly amazing. Scientists have estimated that there are about 10 million billion ants in the world – more than there are amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals combined.1 God created ants with important useful functions.  Here are just a few those skills: They can be gardeners, scattering and planting more seeds than any other creature. They dispose of 90% of small dead animals. They turn, drain, and enrich most of the earth’s soil (more than earthworms). We might think ants are pests most of the time, but they have a very significant role in maintaining a healthy earth. 1Most information in this blog from   Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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Posted on Nov 15, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  Note: after recently having computer problems and talking with several computer service technicians, I was reminded of this parody I had stored in my files … thought I would share it with you. Remember, God is Love! Customer: I’m not very technical, but I think I am ready to install now. What do I do first? CS Rep: The first step is to open your HEART. Have you located your HEART ma’am? Customer: Yes I have, but there are several programs running right now.  Is it okay to install while they are running? CS Rep: What programs are running ma’am? Customer: Let me see … I have PASTHURT.EXE, LOWESTEEM.EXE, GRUDGE.EXE, and RESENTMENT.COM running right now. CS Rep: No problem. LOVE will automatically erase PASTHURT.EXE from your current operating system. It may remain in your permanent memory, but it will no longer disrupt other programs. LOVE will eventually overwrite LOWESTEEM.EXE with a module of its own called HIGHESTEEM.EXE.  However, you have to completely turn off GRUDGE.EXE and RESENTMENT.COM. Those programs prevent LOVE from being properly installed. Can you turn those off ma’am? Customer: I don’t know how to turn them off. Can you tell me how? CS Rep: My pleasure.  Go to your Start menu and invoke FORGIVENESS.EXE.  Do this as many times as necessary until GRUDGE.EXE and RESENTMENT.COM have been completely erased. Customer: Okay, I’m done. LOVE has started installing itself automatically. Is that normal? CS Rep: Yes it is. You should receive a message that says it will reinstall for the life of your HEART.  Do you see that message? Customer: Yes I do. Is it completely installed? CS Rep: Yes, but remember that you have only the base program.  You need to begin connecting to other HEART’s in order to get the upgrades. Customer: Oops…I have an error message already. What should I do? CS Rep: What does the message say? Customer: It says “ERROR 412 – PROGRAM NOT RUN ON INTERNAL COMPONENTS”.  What does that mean? CS Rep: Don’t worry ma’am, that’s a common problem.  It means that the LOVE program is set up to run on external HEARTS but has not yet been run on your HEART.  It is one of those complicated programming things, but in non-technical terms it means you have to “LOVE” your own machine before it can “LOVE” others. Customer: So what should I do? CS Rep: Can you find the directory called “SELF-ACCEPTANCE”? Customer: Yes, I have it. CS Rep: Excellent, you are getting good at this. Customer: Thank you. CS Rep: You’re welcome.  Click on the following files and then copy them to the “MYHEART” directory: FORGIVESELF.DOC, SELFESTEEM.TXT, REALIZEWORTH.TXT, and GOODNESS.DOC.  The system will overwrite any conflicting files and begin patching any faulty programming.  Also, you need to delete SELFCRITIC.EXE from all directories, and then empty your recycle bin afterwards to make sure it is completely gone and never comes back. Customer: Got it. Hey! My HEART is filling up with really neat files. SMILE.MPG is playing on my monitor right now and it shows that WARMTH.COM, PEACE.EXE, and CONTENTMENT.COM are copying themselves all over My...

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Whale Power to Air Power

Posted on Nov 8, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

In our travels around the country, we encounter many wind farms, churning away, generating electrical energy. In an effort to make wind turbines even more aerodynamically efficient, biology professor Dr. Frank Fish and Stephen Dewar (founders of Canadian-based company WhalePower) turned to biomimetrics [copying or being inspired by design solutions from nature]. Dr. Fish noticed that the bumpy, irregular surface on tail fins of the humpback whale and some dolphins increased their aerodynamic efficiency as they travel through water. These bumps, called tubercles, inspired scientists and engineers at WhalePower to come up with what has been named “tubercle design”. One of the problems with wind turbines is their efficiency at different wind speeds. At high wind speeds, most turbines function well. However, turbine blades stall as the wind speeds drop, thereby losing their lift. To compensate for this, most conventional wind turbine blades are arranged well below the optimal angle for generating power. According to Fish, by adding tubercles to the edge of a turbine blade, “You can modulate the pitch of your windmill so that it operates at higher angles of attack without fear of stalling.”1 This in effect increases lift, decreases drag and reduces the risk of a stall. The end result is a 20% increase in generated power compared to conventional turbine blades. So far, WhalePower is selling technology for  highly efficient industrial ceiling fans, with wind turbine blades still in the near future. Whether they acknowledge it or not, many scientists and engineers are looking to God’s designs in nature for solutions to modern day problems.   1   Lanny Johnson   If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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The Riddle of the Freezing Frogs

Posted on Nov 2, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  I have a holding pond for irrigation water on my property. Within a few weeks after the incoming water is shut off in mid-October, the pond drains. What is left is a thick layer of mud that freezes during the winter. I have always wondered what happens to several of my “pet” frogs during the winter. Several years ago, I had to deepen the pond during the winter. As I was digging through the frozen mud, I exposed two of those frogs. They were frozen! I carefully reburied them, and when spring returned, and the pond was once more filled with water, there were the frogs. The pond sits on the point of a hill, and its only source of water is through a 2 inch supply pipe. These frogs are much bigger that the supply line, so these were not new frogs that were carried to the pond through the pipe. The frogs I have were actually transplanted to the pond many years ago by some young boys whose family was borrowing our house for a short time. So how did the frogs survive through the winter? Interestingly, just today I read an article from Creation Moments about freezing frogs …  “… science has a growing list of creatures that do, indeed, freeze in the winter, and thaw and resume life in the spring. Scientists recently added three species of tree frog to that list. As the cool, fall weather sets in, these northern tree frogs usually burrow beneath the forest’s leaf litter. However, if there is little snow, the frogs have no protection from freezing. Scientists assumed that the frogs’ bodies manufacture antifreeze, as do some insects and polar fish. “When scientists collected some tree frogs for laboratory study in the late fall and winter, they received a surprise. Up to 35 percent of the frogs’ body fluids froze when the frogs were cooled to several degrees below freezing. When thawed, the frogs returned to normal activities. Scientists discovered that the frogs’ bodies produced glycerol. This alcohol acts as an antifreeze. What is more important, it prevents ice crystals from forming in a way that destroys cells.” I have not felt inclined to dissect any of my frogs to see if they are packed with glycerol. However, I am awed that, whether it is antifreeze or not, they are able to survive the freezing winter. Scientists can observe what they do, but how that process came to be can only be contemplated upon. One of the questions I could not satisfactorily answer when I believed in evolution would have been, “How many times did they have to die before they learned that neat little trick?” It seems to me that they were created with the right system for survival, rather that the process of chance and accident, because you don’t get a chance to fix things once...

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Computer Woes

Posted on Oct 25, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  Have you ever taken your car to a mechanic to have it repaired, only to have it quit “ailing” as soon as you get it to the shop? The mechanic then has the problem of trying to fix something that isn’t showing symptoms, and has to base his diagnosis on hearsay. I had something similar happen to me just recently with my work computer. It was freezing up and jumping from window to window. I tried several fixes on my own, but to no avail, and so I took it to a computer repair shop. After backing up all the documents, the first thing the technician did was reinstall Windows 7, which meant losing all the downloaded programs on the computer. He then ran the computer, which seemed to be working fine. So I took the computer home, put it to work, only to discover it was still doing the same things as before. So it was back to the shop for another diagnosis. Next try was turning a sensitive motion detector off and resetting the main “bios”. I then took it home to find out it was still not working. So it was back to the shop to replace the memory with some spare memory the technician had on hand. Home again to discover it was still not working. Only thing that hadn’t been changed at this point was the hard drive (that actually tested to be working fine) so we changed it out. Again, everything was working fine at the shop, but as soon as I got it home and hooked everything up … same problem. So back to the shop to put the other hard drive back in (it still had reloaded documents on it) to save time.  After rebooting the computer, it finally showed the ailing symptoms. It took awhile, but we finally traced down the culprit … it was the software of my mouse! After uninstalling the software, and getting a new mouse, the problem was solved. Now I am working on getting several key programs working (that worked before, but not now) to get back up to full speed. I have to admit that computer technology has made it easier for communication and developing and presenting information, but sometimes the stress they produce can be borderline exasperating!   Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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Not Always So Big

Posted on Oct 10, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

  I have found that there are a lot of misconceptions about dinosaurs. I normally always start off each dinosaur talk showing 2 dinosaurs models (see pictures) – a Stegosaurus and a Tyrannosaurus Rex. After identifying the dinosaurs, and holding up the Stegosaurus, I will ask, “How many of you believe that at one time there was a Stegosaurus this exact size walking upon the earth? If you believe that, raise your hand.” Usually only a very few hands will be raised. Then I ask, “Then how many of you believe that there wasn’t a Stegosaurus this exact size walking upon the earth?”  Normally, a majority of those present will raise their hands. I will then hold up the T-Rex and repeat the questions.  Again, the majority will vote that there never was a T-Rex that exact size walking upon the earth. I then hold up a replica (exact copy of the real thing) of an Oviraptor egg, explaining that most scientists today believe that dinosaurs were hatched from eggs. Then I share that a fossilized egg of a Stegosaurus has been found. The scientist knew it was a Stegosaurus because using  x-ray they were able to see the baby Stegosaurus still inside of the egg … and that egg was just a little smaller than my model Stegosaurus. So, yes at one time there was a very small Stegosaurus running around on the earth – when it hatched out of the egg! Even the very large Brachiosaurus, who grew to be about 80 feet long, came from relatively small eggs (two eggs stuck together in lower right corner of the enclosed picture). To date, they have never found an egg of T-Rex that they know for sure was a T-Rex. However, by comparing the size of eggs of other dinosaurs that have been found and identified, and then comparing it to the adult dinosaur’s size, and then comparing it to the size of an adult T-Rex, many scientists now believe that when T-Rex hatched out of an egg it was probably about the size of my T-Rex model. Wow! So if you were able to catch a T-Rex when it hatched out, you could put a collar on it and walk it like a dog … or carry it around on your shoulder like a parrot. But you couldn’t do that for too long, because T-Rex did grow to be a very large dinosaur!   Lanny Johnson   If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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My God

Posted on Sep 25, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 0 comments

We received the following comment in response to my last blog (Biomimicry – Imitating God’s Design): “It is disingenous [sic] to say that scientists learn from God just because humans have observed and mimicked nature as a way to improve physical items.  No, scientists and humans can learn from animals and nature.  You (and no one to date) have not done anything to prove that animals and nature have come from your God. Please keep that in mind when composing your future blog posts in the “weeks to come”, Lanny. And your closing sentence, which I suspect was intended to be humorous, only underscores your severe lack of understanding of how evolution (a fact that has been accepted by the overwhelming majority of respected scientists from a wide variety of disciplines) works.” I have to disagree with the opening sentence – if disingenuous is meant as, ‘Not straightforward or candid; giving a false appearance of frankness’ – I am very straightforward in my opinion that we can learn from the things that God has made. But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee: Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee. Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the LORD hath wrought this? In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind. Job 12:7-10. So I agree that “scientists and humans can learn from animals and nature.”  Where I disagree is the origins of those animals and nature. In answer to the commenting individual, I would propose, “You (and no one to date) have not done anything to prove that animals and nature have come from your macro-evolution.”  Evolution has not been proved using the scientific method (A method of investigation involving observation and theory to test scientific hypotheses) of observation, demonstration and repeatability. Yes, we have observed changes within the kinds, but never observed (in life or the fossil record) one kind changing into another kind. The evolutionary tree of life is full of dashes and dots – assumptions – of how animals changed into another kind of animal, but it is not FACT based on observation. For 20 some years I also believed in macro-evolution, and as a result did not believe in God. However, when I was really challenged to verify that belief, I could find no scientific evidence to back it up. No, I could not prove God either with science, but I was able to observe design in all living things. Design points to a designer, not to the mindless chance and accident of evolution. It was the design in nature that led me to believe in my God and the truth of His Word. So I think I...

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Biomimicry – Imitating God’s Design

Posted on Sep 12, 2012 in Johnsons from the Front | 2 comments

  While traveling home yesterday, we drove by Denver International Airport and saw many airplanes on their approach to land. As we looked at the underbellies of the large airplanes flying over our heads, Marilyn made the comment, “It’s amazing that something so large can even fly!” It is amazing; especially when you consider that the technology for mechanical flight came about from man observing a part of God’s creation … the birds. Today, scientists and engineers continue to learn from God’s creation through biomimicry. Biomimicry literally translates from the Greek as “imitation of life.” It is the idea that problems can be solved, and humans greatly benefited, by simulating or copying the processes found in biology, chemistry and geology. From biomimicry, engineers were able to solve a problem with the design of the world’s fastest train, Japan’s Shinkansen Bullet Train, which can travel at over 200 miles per hour. The first design had a very serious noise problem – every time it came out of a tunnel at high speeds it would make an extremely loud bang, due to the change in air pressure. To solve this problem, the engineers turned to one of God’s birds, the kingfisher. Because of the design of the kingfisher’s beak and head, there is very little splashing when it dives into the water. The train was redesigned to imitate the aerodynamic shape of the kingfisher’s beak and skull and the result was a train that ran faster, much quieter and uses less energy. Many other countries have “borrowed” similar designs for their trains. In the weeks to come, I will be blogging on more imitated designs from God’s Creation that are being developed and used today. Amazingly, many of the scientists and engineers who study the design in nature still believe it all happened by chance and accident … so why don’t they just sit back and let their problems resolve themselves by mindless evolution?     Lanny Johnson If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your...

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