This book, Rational Conclusions, is an experience!! The top front of the hardback cover has (with white lettering and blue background) the title and author's name. Below this is an attention-grabbing multicolored mélange of about two dozen topics considered in the text, e.g. reason, faith, physics, embryology, credibility and microbiology.
In Addition to the above-named topics the CONTENTS includes Ancient History, Science, Archaeology, Ancient Manuscripts, Cosmology, Biogenesis, Genetics, The Fossil Record, and Authentic Christianity. With such a breadth of topics we are tempted to suspect a superficial coverage. Yet to my amazement Agresti has done an astonishing job of supporting his conclusions, citing 2,556 references. Talk about documentation!! However, the Citations and Searchable Electronic Index are not in the book, but may be obtained at [...]. There are hundreds of pages of references and additional comments.
Author Agresti is a Brown University graduate and "a former atheist who became a Christian after reading the Bible over the course of a year and finding objective evidence for its accuracy" (back cover). This was at a time in his life when he "was looking for flaws and contradictions" because he thought that the Bible was just fiction (p. 306).
Agresti now clearly is opposed to large scale evolution and says that the "fossil evidence is mangled by evolutionary presumptions" (p. 276). He proclaims that "detailed and well-substantiated evidence points to creation, while on the contrary, the case for evolution is built upon murky data and shaky inferences." (p. 277).
I've read a ton of books from both sides of the isle from authors like Mills, Harris, Dawkins, Stroble, Behe, Metcalfe, Larry Azar, Howard Zinn and Philip Yancey. I also recently tried to get through The 5000 year Leap but didn't make it because of the nauseating bias and heavy handed 'you must believe' style. Yes, I am a Christian on a journey with friends (theists and non theists) who tolerate me... and I them :) and found this book to be very objective in it's delivery of data. Towards the end the author's personal passions are more clearly revealed and that's ok with me. The book is written very well; not too heady and delivers a great deal of information that covers many areas of interest and pertinence. There are topics or specific examples that I hoped he would get into but didn't like The Knee of Haydar, Radial Momentum and the Big Bang or more of the 'icons of evolution' but regardless as far as an 'all' encompassing book and resource it is great. He does a very nice job laying it all out and bringing it back together for a thoughtful appraisal by the reader. I am also a teacher and am intimately familiar with the garbage put forth in academic text books, not because I may or may not agree with it, but rather for how far removed it is from observability, repeatability and what we know to be happening as it does in the real world. Public Education declares that they want kids to be able to think, but sadly... that's a lie too. Get the book, give a read and decide for yourself.
This is one of the most thoroughly researched and referenced apologetic materials I have come across! It will fascinate the believer and make the unbeliever question his stand! I highly recommend this book!!
My son used this book to write an addendum to his science teacher's "prove evolution is true" assignment (yes, she's teaching it as fact with no other options). He even gave her a copy of the book in the hope she reads it and perhaps changes her own conclusions. Thank you Mr. Agresti for writing such an amazing book!
Mr. Agresti has an Mechanical Engineering background as I do, and utilizes sound (and rational) analysis applicable to any problem in tackling Evolutionary theory. Non-engineers may object to an engineer writing about the various sciences purported to support evolution. But engineers more so than many other professions must be very thorough and leave no stone unturned, or it comes back to bite them, especially when public safety is involved. (re Product Liability lawsuits). Ability to think, analyze and solve problems accurately is very important. Breadth of knowledge is also important. Agresti was chief engineer involved in helicopter customization... Anything that flies requires MUCH diligence in engineering. Other sciences seem to be fraught with controversy and disagreement (climatology, paleontology, genetics, biology etc. and seems to matter little except for where you get a job or funding. So Agresti convinces me completely with the evidence and approach used- all areas addressed as necessary. He uses over 2000 published references (found online) including those that contradict evolutionary theory, discuss pseudoscience, etc. All areas covered, exposed. Paleontology- even Darwin states in Origin of Species that the geologic record is not complete as he would expect. Gives many examples of hundreds of millions of yr old fossils nearly exactly as existing today, previously thought extinct. Evolution now calls these "persistent types" yet a hallmark of the theory is the change as you go back in time. Dinosaurs were thought to precede grass, but recent dung analysis found modern grass. Coal deposits that would be expected to take millions of years to happen have trees buried, still standing, not rotted as if covered up in a few days. Bacteria do NOT evolve, they adapt- and revert back again- adaption, not evolution... Read the book! He drags out a lot of skeletons. Also covered is the accuracy of the bible- another excellent treatise. This includes use of courtroom legal evidence practices, and opinions of great thinkers in science that also concluded the existence of a creator based on their scientific research. This is a MUST READ book, especially for those that challenge the accuracy of the Bible and/or think evolution is basically a proven theory. There is plenty to disprove it.
This book systematically takes the reader through the major points of evolution, and explains step by step why these points are less believable than creationism. My only criticism of the book is that it leans towards the more technical reader, which I believe will limit it's appeal for the average person. On the other hand, those most swayed by the doctrine of Darwinism should find this book a strong counter to Darwin's theory, and find it's technical base an appealing read. The amount of work Mr. Agresti has invested in his research brings this work from another apologetic pseudo-scientific book, to a hard hitting research publication that blows major holes in the naturalistic worldview.
Rational Conclusions is an outstanding book that not only makes the convincing case for Christianity and Creation as the "First Cause" as argued by Aquinas in his Summa Theologica, but is extremely educational regarding the correlations to the Bible in Ancient Writers such as Tacitus and Josephus, but analyzes evolutionary theory with respect to current science. James Agresti delves into the "Big Bang" theory, inability of scientist to create new life as attempted since Pasteur and the genetics research that has been both fraudulent and incapable of demonstrating that any evidence exists of new forms of life evolving from other forms. Mutations tend to reduce genetic scope, not produce new form of life.. The frauds for the past century-and-a-half regarding evolution are identical to the fraud perpetrated today such as AGW and Mann's "Hockey Stick" fraud. The book is logical and methodical, chock-full of educational material and meticulously researched. I highly recommend it to Christians, Creationists and those who seek truth regarding science.
Just finished my copy of "Rational Conclusions" given to me by a friend. I was blown away by the immense amount of research which has gone into this work! The plethora of citations only serve to reinforce the profound statements and conclusions which the author proposes. I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the search for Truth, be it the casual inspector or the thorough investigator, with the only negative being the lack of response from the academic world in general. I suppose it is indeed easier to bury one's head in the sand then to critically face one's own biases.