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Discovery Magazine 3/1/2007

Bone Repair

It was a nice summer day. I was seven years old, enjoying playing with my brother. He was steering the bike and peddling hard, while I was riding on the handlebars. With the wind in my hair, the sun on my face, and all day to play, things were looking good. But then, for some reason, my brother suddenly stopped—I didn’t. I kept going forward, but not on the handlebars. I soared through the air and landed on my shoulder, breaking my left collar bone.

It was the first bone I had ever broken, and, oh, how it hurt! The doctor gave me a kind of harness to wear over my shoulders, and said that in about eight weeks my collar bone should be good as new, maybe even stronger.

As good as new? Even stronger than before? In just eight weeks? How could a bone that I had just broken grow back together by itself? The reason: God designed the human body so that when we break a bone, it has the ability to heal itself. Doctors may assist in this healing procedure by setting bones back in place, but your intelligently designed body does the rest.

The bone-healing process begins as soon as the bone is broken (which is one reason why, if you have to get a broken bone set by a doctor, it needs to be done as soon as possible). When a bone breaks (or fractures), blood vessels within the bone and the surrounding tissue burst, causing a blood clot at the fracture site. Over the next few days, your body works around the clock to heal itself (without you even thinking about it).

As blood vessels bring proteins to the fracture site, cartilage begins to form in place of the blood clot and acts as a splint for the broken bone. Your body also sends tiny crystals of calcium through your blood stream to the fracture. A few days later, a bony deposit forms and replaces the cartilage with spongy bone. Blood cells continue to provide the fracture site with the proper nutrients. Within 6-8 weeks, the spongy, bony deposit turns into a strong, stable “patch” of bone that can last a lifetime.

This new bone, like the old one, is strong and lightweight. Amazingly, your body does all of this “automatically.” Just imagine seeing a car door dented, scratched, and out of order, following a wreck. What if, over the next eight weeks, as the car continued to be driven, it “automatically” repaired itself without any help from an automotive body shop? Such a feat would be amazing. No one would believe that the door simply had evolved the ability to repair itself. We would rightly conclude that the car door had been skillfully programmed to perform its job.

Unlike dented, broken car doors, your body really does have the ability to heal its broken bones. When my dad was 65 years old, he was hit by a car while he was walking across the street. The crash fractured his left hip, left leg, and his left wrist (in two places). However, it only took a few months before he was walking around and wrestling with his grandchildren. Even at age 65, his bones had healed themselves. Was this action merely the result of time and chance? Or, did an intelligent Being (God) create our bones with this ability?

Evolutionists cannot logically explain how bones obtained the ability to repair themselves. Try to imagine the first time a vertebrate (an animal with a backbone) or a human broke a bone. What tells the blood to clot at the fracture site? Why do some cells travel through the blood vessels to work on repairing the bone, while others continue working in other parts of the body? Why does new bone begin growing at the fracture site? Why not skin, or hair, or something else? Any answer that depends on time and chance, rather than an intelligent Designer, is doomed to fail.

We should praise the Lord, not evolution, for our amazing bodies (Psalm 139:14). “Know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves” (Psalm 100:3).

Copyright © 2007 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

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