God Said Man Said

CRISPR: No New Thing

Biomimicry is foundational to man’s inventions, and would include all of today’s modern accomplishments: from harnessing electricity, to the vaunted digital world, to faux flower centerpieces on the dining room table.
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CRISPR: No New Thing

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The balance of the Book must be maintained if I am to walk a balanced Christian life.  I was once accused of preaching out of the Old Testament.  In my defense, I was in good company: The New Testament, from the very first chapter, references the Old Testament.  I have not counted the references to the Old in the New, but I have seen estimates of around 300 times. 

The balance of God’s Word is demonstrated in Romans 11:21-22:

21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.

22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.

The goodness and severity is demonstrated in the Great Commission, where Jesus states in Mark 16:15-16:

15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

As Brother Ollie once said, “God did not get saved in the New Testament.  Much of the feel-good doctrine espoused today needs Godly balance.”  Consider Hebrews 10:31:

It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Hebrews 12:28-29:

28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:

29 For our God is a consuming fire.

Philippians 2:12:

Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

God did not get saved in the New Testament, but something pivotal—absolutely central to the Bible’s entire narrative—did, in fact, usher in the New Testament—or, should I say is the New Testament.  I Corinthians 11:25 speaks of Jesus Christ:

After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

God’s grace, God’s forgiveness, God’s love and way of escape is found in the Cross of Jesus Christ.  The absolute expungement of every evil deed and its shame is discovered in Christ’s cleansing and saving blood.  Have you been born again?  Will today be the day you are born a second time—this time of the Spirit of God?  Will today be the day you participate in II Timothy 2:19:

Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.

Today, you can participate in the beautiful balance of the Book.  Click onto “Further With Jesus” for childlike instructions and immediate entry into the Kingdom of God.  NOW FOR TODAY’S SUBJECT.

GOD SAID, Ecclesiastes 1:9-10:

9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.

GOD SAID, Ecclesiastes 3:15:

That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.

MAN SAID: We are trailblazers!  We are the creators of all that is new and exciting.  The future is ours—a future where there is no God.  We don’t need Him! 

Now THE RECORD:  Welcome to GodSaidManSaid feature article 845 that will once again certify the inerrancy of Holy Writ.  All of these powerful features are archived here in text and streaming audio for the edification of the blood-bought and as a platform from which to convince the gainsayers.  Every Thursday eve, God willing, they grow by one.  Thank you for visiting.  May God’s face shine upon you with Light and Truth. 

They call it biomimicry—simply the mimicking, attempting to duplicate, or to follow the pattern of God’s created biology.  Keep in mind, there really is no new thing under the sun. 

The first law of thermodynamics states that energy cannot be created or destroyed.  God created a fixed amount of energy—which is life’s force—and it cannot be added to or subtracted from.  This scientific understanding is found in Ecclesiastes 3:14:

I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.

Today’s feature addressing “no new thing” also fits well into the reality of the primacy of the God of all creation.  We are sheep; we must follow.  Try as we may, we cannot lead. 

Biomimicry is foundational to man’s inventions, and would include all of today’s modern accomplishments: from harnessing electricity, to the vaunted digital world, to faux flower centerpieces on the dining room table. 

Donald DeYoung made several interesting observations in his book Fascinating Facts from the World of Discovery that address the concept of biomimicry:

November 15, 1719:  Paper was a rare commodity in past centuries.  On this date, a French scientist, Rene-Antoine Reaumur, shared with the French Royal Academy his important observation from a walk in the woods:

The American wasps form very fine paper… They teach us that paper can be made from the fibers of plants without the use of rags and linens, and seem to invite us to try whether we cannot make fine and good paper from the use of certain woods. 

Wasps build their paper nests by processing wood fibers in their stomachs.  Today, the similar chemical processing of fibers is the main source of our paper products.  There is obviously much to learn from studying the details of creation. 

October 20, 1948: Swiss engineer Georges de Mestral doesn’t remember the exact date this October when he walked his hunting dog in the woods.  Arriving back home, he noticed cockleburs in his socks and also in his dog’s fur coat.  These are round seed pods with a prickly surface which readily clings to fur or clothing.  Closer inspection showed tiny hooks on the ends of the burs which firmly attached to many surfaces.  In this way, their seeds are dispersed.  From this finding, de Mestral invented the Velcro fastener made of tiny nylon hooks and loops.  Velcro is listed as one of the most useful inventions of the past century.  The fastener is widely used in clothing, industry, and even medicine.  Actually, the Velcro idea has been around as long as the created cockleburs.  Bird feathers also show this same fastener design in their connecting side vanes. 

April 29, 1913: The common, all-purpose zipper was patented today by Gideon Sudback of Sweden.  One of the first uses for zippers was on snow boots.  Actually, the zipper structure has been present since the creation week itself.  As an example, the DNA molecule replicates or copies itself by “unzipping” along its length and then reattaching both halves to new molecules.  [End of quotes]

The headline in the April 15, 2017, issue of Science News reads, “The Original CRISPR,” with the subhead, “Before becoming a famous tool, the gene editor was a weapon in an unending microscopic war.”  Several paragraphs from this feature follow:

It is the dazzling star of the biotech world: a powerful new tool that can deftly and precisely alter the structure of DNA.  It promises cures for diseases, sturdier crops, malaria-resistant mosquitoes, and more.  Frenzy over the technique—known as CRISPR/Cas9—is in full swing.  Every week, new CRISPR findings are unfurled in scientific journals.  In the courts, universities fight over patents.  The media report on the breakthroughs as well as the ethics of this game-changer almost daily. 

But there is a less sequins-and-glitter side to CRISPR that’s just as alluring to anyone thirsty to understand the natural world.  The biology behind CRISPR technology comes from a battle that has been raging for eons, out of sight and yet all around us (and on us, and in us). 

The CRISPR editing tool has its origins in microbes—bacteria and archaea that live in obscene numbers everywhere from undersea vents to the snot in the human nose.  For billions of years, these single-celled organisms have been at odds with the viruses—known as phages—that attack them, invaders so plentiful that a single drop of seawater can hold 10 million.  And natural CRISPR systems (there are many) play a big part in this tussle.  If a virus shows up again, the cell—and its offspring—can recognize and destroy it.  Studying this system will teach biologists much about ecology, disease, and the overall workings of life on Earth. 

The process works like this:  A virus injects its genetic material into the cell.  Sensing this danger, the cell selects a little strip of that genetic material and adds it to the spacers in the CRISPR cluster.  This step, known as immunization or adaptation, creates a list of encounters a cell has had with viruses, plasmids, or other foreign bits of DNA over time—neatly lined up in reverse chronological order, newest to oldest. 

Older spacers eventually get shed, but a CRISPR cluster can grow to be long—the record holder to date is 587 spacers in Haliangium ochraceum, a salt-loving microbe isolated from a piece of seaweed.  “It’s like looking at the last 600 shots you had in your arm,” says Barrangou.  “Think about that.” 

New spacer in place, the microbe is now immunized.  Later comes targeting.  If that same phage enters the cell again, it’s recognized.  The cell has made RNA copies of the relevant spacer, which bind to the matching spot on the genome of the invading phage.  That “guide RNA” leads Cas proteins to target and snip the phage DNA, defanging the intruder. 

Researchers now know there are a confetti-storm of different CRISPR systems, and the list continues to grow.  Some are simple—such as the CRISPR/Cas9 system that’s been adapted for gene editing in more complex creatures—and some are elaborate, with many protein workhorses deployed to get the job done. 

Perhaps more significantly, Koonin says, almost all the known microbes that live in super-hot environments have CRISPRs.  His group’s math models suggest that CRISPR systems are most useful when microbes encounter a big enough variety of viruses to make adaptive memory worth having.  [End of quotes]

There is no new thing under the sun.  Ecclesiastes 3:14:  

I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.

Childlike faith will never be embarrassed.  Put your faith in the God of the Book—the majority-text Holy Bible. 

GOD SAID, Ecclesiastes 1:9-10:

9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.

GOD SAID, Ecclesiastes 3:15:

That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.

MAN SAID: We are trailblazers!  We are the creators of all that is new and exciting.  The future is ours—a future where there is no God.  We don’t need Him!

Now you have THE RECORD.

 

 

References:

Authorized King James Version

DeYoung, D., Fascinating Facts from the World of Discovery, New Leaf Press, 2000

Mestel, R., “The Original CRISPR,” Science News, April 15, 2017

 

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