Viruses: Originally Created Good?

Posted in Creation/Evolution on August 18th, 2007 by dhawkinsmo

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This is the title of a very interesting article written by Jerry Bergman, a creationist, in 1999. I provide Dr. Bergman’s main points below and one reason this article is significant is because up until very recently, most people including scientists have viewed viruses as “bad”, as the 2006 Nature article below points out. Bergman, on the other hand, being a creationist, apparently realized the truth of the Biblical statements which affirm that God created all things “good” in the beginning. This is a great example of how the Bible is an excellent source for valid scientific hypotheses, often when the rest of science has it wrong.

Here’s the abstract of Bergman’s article …

A review of the structure, function, and role of viruses in ecology is presented. It is concluded that viruses are non-living entities, similar to seeds and spores whose functions include carrying genes from one plant or animal to another. Viruses are a part of a system that helps to produce the variety that is critical for life and, importantly, they carry resistance to disease from one organism to another. Most viruses live in their host without causing problems. Pathogenesis is evidence of something gone wrong, a mutation or the accidental movement of genes, and not evidence of a system deliberately designed to cause human disease and suffering.

And some points Bergman makes which I think are fascinating …

* Bacteria used to be thought of as mostly “bad”, but now they are known to be essential for life
* Viruses seem to be turning out the same way — once thought of as “bad” — it now appears that they are essential for life on the planet
* Pathogenic viruses probably are so because they are either out of place, or mutated
* We may be able to use viruses to treat bacterial infections much more effectively than with antibiotics
* Viruses are essential for molecular biology research Read more »