100 episodes

RTB's mission is to spread the Christian Gospel by demonstrating that sound reason and scientific research—including the very latest discoveries—consistently support, rather than erode, confidence in the truth of the Bible. For more information please visit our website at reasons.org/monthlypartners

Reasons to Believe Podcast Reasons To Believe

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.3 • 9 Ratings

RTB's mission is to spread the Christian Gospel by demonstrating that sound reason and scientific research—including the very latest discoveries—consistently support, rather than erode, confidence in the truth of the Bible. For more information please visit our website at reasons.org/monthlypartners

    Clear Thinking | Chemistry & Origin of Life: Interview with Steve Baertschi

    Clear Thinking | Chemistry & Origin of Life: Interview with Steve Baertschi

    • 38 min
    Stars, Cells, and God | Growing Human Organs in Pigs and Mitigating Air Pollution

    Stars, Cells, and God | Growing Human Organs in Pigs and Mitigating Air Pollution

    Join Fazale “Fuz” Rana and Hugh Ross as they discuss new discoveries taking place at the frontiers of science that have theological and philosophical implications, including the reality of God’s existence.
     
    Growing Human Organs in Pigs
    In the fall of 2023, a team of researchers from China published the results of a proof-of-principle study that demonstrated for the first time that it’s possible to grow humanized kidneys in a fetal pig. This work provides the means to study the process of organogenesis that may also alleviate the shortage of organs available for human transplant procedures. However, this research raises all sorts of questions that could be summarized with a single question: “Should we play God?”
     
    In this episode, biochemist Fuz Rana describes the work of the Chinese researchers and offers a Christian perspective on the creation of human-animal chimeras.
    Mitigating Air Pollution
    Air pollution level in India’s capital territory of Delhi is more than 25 times greater than the maximum human tolerable level set by the World Health Organization (WHO). This pollution is called PM2.5 (inhalable particles with diameters of 2.5 micrometers or less) and is almost entirely composed of black carbon soot, mineral dust, sulfates, nitrates, ammonia, and sodium chloride. Scientists at WHO have determined that the average Indian living in Delhi would live 11.9 years longer if the PM2.5 level there were reduced to WHO’s maximum limit. Nearly all of India’s PM2.5 air pollution comes from the burning of coal, wood, biomass, diesel, gasoline, and oil, in that order. Replacing these fuel sources with natural gas would eliminate all of India’s PM2.5 except for the small contribution from road and construction dust. This replacement would also immediately reduce carbon greenhouse gas emissions by nearly half.      
     
    PODCAST LINKS:
     
    Generation of a Humanized Mesonephros in Pigs from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells via Embryo Complementation
     
    Additional Resources:
     
    A Theology for Synthetic Biology, Part 1
     
    A Theology for Synthetic Biology, Part 2
     
    YOUTUBE LINKS:
     
    Jiaowei Wang et al., “Generation of a Humanized Mesonephros in Pigs from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells via Embryo Complementation,” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/37683604/
     
    Additional Resources:
     
    Fazale Rana, “A Theology for Synthetic Biology, Part 1,”
    https://reasons.org/explore/publications/articles/a-theology-for-synthetic-biology-part-1-of-2
     
    Fazale Rana, “A Theology for Synthetic Biology, Part 2,” https://reasons.org/explore/publications/articles/a-theology-for-synthetic-biology-part-2-of-2
     
    PODCAST LINKS:
     
    Air Quality Life Index 2023: Annual Update (August 2023)
    Air Quality Life Index, India Fact Sheet (2023)
    The Relationship between Fine Particle Matter (PM2.5) Exposure and Upper Respiratory Tract Diseases
     
    YOUTUBE LINKS:
     
    Michael Greenstone and Christa Hasenkopf, Air Quality Life Index 2023: Annual Update (August 2023),https://aqli.epic.uchicago.edu/wp-content/uploads/2023/08/AQLI_2023_Report-Global.pdf
    Air Quality Life Index, India Fact Sheet (2023), https://aqli.epic.uchicago.edu/wp-content/uploads/2023/08/India-FactSheet-2023_Final.pdf
    Łukasz Zaręba et al., “The Relationship between Fine Particle Matter (PM2.5) Exposure and Upper Respiratory Tract Diseases,” https://www.mdpi.com/2075-4426/14/1/98

    • 58 min
    Clear Thinking | Take Up and Read: Ken's Apologetics Books, Part 4

    Clear Thinking | Take Up and Read: Ken's Apologetics Books, Part 4

    • 49 min
    Stars, Cells, and God | CRISPR Update and Two Noteworthy AI Finds

    Stars, Cells, and God | CRISPR Update and Two Noteworthy AI Finds

    Join Fazale “Fuz” Rana and Jeff Zweerink as they discuss new discoveries taking place at the frontiers of science that have theological and philosophical implications, including the reality of God’s existence.
     
    CRISPR Update
    In December of 2023, the FDA approved two revolutionary new treatments for the blood disorders sickle cell anemia and ß-thalassemia, both based on gene-editing technology. This approval represents an important milestone for gene therapy and the treatment of thousands of genetic disorders. It also serves as a stepping stone for human enhancements and adds to the legitimacy of transhumanism.
     
    In this episode, biochemist Fuz Rana describes these new gene therapies and discusses the ethical issues connected to them. He also offers a Christian response to the prospects of human enhancements and transhumanism.
     
    Two Noteworthy AI Finds
    As the field of artificial intelligence (AI) advances, research continues to show both the promise and peril of using AI. For example, most AIs work well within a single domain (e.g., classifying signs, responding to language, playing a game). Recent work in game play resulted in an AI capable of mastering multiple games that in the past required different approaches. However, the AI (called Student of Games) mastered multiple different games using a single algorithm. This development represents a significant step (the promise) on the journey to make an artificial general intelligence. Yet, other research demonstrates that a wide variety of AIs are highly vulnerable to malicious attacks. Specifically, the algorithms AIs use to recognize images are easily exploited and manipulated (the peril). 
    In this episode, astrophysicist Jeff Zweerink explains the breakthrough and why a Christian perspective is needed when considering such advances.  
     
     
    PODCAST LINKS:
     
    FDA Approves First CRISPR Editing Treatment for Sickle Cell Disease
     
    Sickle Cell CRISPR ‘Cure’ Is the Start of a Revolution in Medicine
     
    Additional Resources:
    Fazale Rana, Humans 2.0
     
    PODCAST LINKS:
     
    Student of Games: A Unified Learning Algorithm for Both Perfect and Imperfect Information Games
     
    AI Networks Are More Vulnerable to Malicious Attacks Than Previously Thought
     
    QuadAttack: A Quadratic Programming Approach to Ordered Top-K Attacks
     

    • 1 hr 6 min
    Clear Thinking | Take Up and Read: Ken's Apologetics Books, Part 3

    Clear Thinking | Take Up and Read: Ken's Apologetics Books, Part 3

    • 52 min
    Stars, Cells, and God | God's Hand in Creation

    Stars, Cells, and God | God's Hand in Creation

    In this special episode, we replay a recorded conversation between prominent astronomer Dr. David Block (professor emeritus of mathematics and astronomy at the University of Witwatersrand and the director of RTB Africa) and world-renowned astronomer Giovanni Fazio (senior physicist at the Center for Astrophysics-Harvard & Smithsonian and a lecturer in the department of astronomy at Harvard University). This wide-ranging conversation between two friends includes their collaboration studying the Andromeda galaxy, their perspectives on God’s handiwork in creation, and Dr. Fazio’s groundbreaking contributions to infrared astronomy.                            
     
    References:
     
    PODCAST LINK:
     
    Professor David Block’s YouTube Channel
     
    YOUTUBE LINKS:
     
    Professor David Block’s YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/@professordavidblock5038

    • 58 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
9 Ratings

9 Ratings

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