As early as 150 years ago Charles Darwin, along with his 19th century contemporaries, believed that the basic content of a cell was simple “protoplasm” that had the ability to self-replicate. Not only has advancement in science shown that this understanding was wrong, but every day the magnitude of just how wrong such an understanding has grows exponentially.
The cell is one of the most complicated mechanisms we have ever observed. It has centers for energy production and distribution, waste disposal, recycling, import and exporting of materials, communication systems, databases, molecular machines for transport, along with rules and guidelines for operation that make a nuclear power plant seem like child’s play in comparison. This makes a cell more akin to a city shrunk down to a micro scale rather than a simple self-replicating protoplasm.
So how did the people in the past get it so wrong? It is based on a single flawed assumption; that they thought as their understanding of the science would grow that they would find that the systems would become more simplified. The reality is that the opposite is true. The more we learn about life and science the more complex we find things in reality to be.
For instance, years ago the famous Drake Equation attempted to calculate the likeliness of other intelligent life existing in the universe. Based on the knowledge that was available as early as 1961, the equations theorized that not only that intelligent life in the universe must be incredibly common, but that even our own Milky Way Galaxy should be spawning with intelligent life. This optimism caused billions to be spent over decades on the program SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence). Interesting enough, after years of observing the cosmos and finding nothing the argument for the Fermi Paradox was stipulated as a criticism to the Drake Equation, which asked if intelligent life is so ubiquitous why have we heard nothing but silence.
What we know today is that the failure was that the original Drake Equation severely underestimated all the factors that are necessary as a precursor for life to survive, let alone all evolve. Based on the information we know today, not only is the calculation of other intelligent life forming independently through an unguided process so astronomically low eliminating the possibility of us crossing paths with them, but the probability is so low that it put into doubt our own existence in question, making more people ask: how is it possible that we are even here?
Science perpetually shows that as our knowledge increases so does our understanding of the complexity of reality. If as little as 150 years ago the leading scientist of that time thought that a cell was a simple self-replicating protoplasm, or 50 years ago that intelligent life must be booming throughout the universe, then how bold is it that 1400 years ago the Quran makes the following claim.
[22:73] O people, here is a parable that you must ponder carefully: the idols you set up beside GOD can never create a fly, even if they banded together to do so. Furthermore, if the fly steals anything from them, they cannot recover it; weak is the pursuer and the pursued.
يَاأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ ضُرِبَ مَثَلٌ فَاسْتَمِعُوا لَهُ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ تَدْعُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ لَنْ يَخْلُقُوا ذُبَابًا وَلَوِ اجْتَمَعُوا لَهُ وَإِنْ يَسْلُبْهُمُ الذُّبَابُ شَيْئًا لَا يَسْتَنْقِذُوهُ مِنْهُ ضَعُفَ الطَّالِبُ وَالْمَطْلُوبُ
These individuals who idolize scientist not only are unable to create a fly, but even if they are given a dead fly they are unable to bring it back to life. Notice that in such a scenario all the components that make a fly are already provided, yet even the best scientist all working together will be unable to bring the life back into the fly once it is officially dead.
[46:33] Do they not realize that GOD, who created the heavens and the earth without the least effort is able to revive the dead? Yes indeed; He is Omnipotent.
أَوَلَمْ يَرَوْا أَنَّ اللَّهَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ وَلَمْ يَعْيَ بِخَلْقِهِنَّ بِقَادِرٍ عَلَىٰ أَنْ يُحْيِيَ الْمَوْتَىٰ بَلَىٰ إِنَّهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
[42:9] Did they find other lords beside Him? GOD is the only Lord and Master. He is the One who resurrects the dead, and He is the Omnipotent One.
أَمِ اتَّخَذُوا مِنْ دُونِهِ أَوْلِيَاءَ فَاللَّهُ هُوَ الْوَلِيُّ وَهُوَ يُحْيِي الْمَوْتَىٰ وَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
[22:5] O people, if you have any doubt about resurrection, (remember that) we created you from dust, and subsequently from a tiny drop, which turns into a hanging (embryo), then it becomes a fetus that is given life or deemed lifeless. We thus clarify things for you. We settle in the wombs whatever we will for a predetermined period. We then bring you out as infants, then you reach maturity. While some of you die young, others live to the worst age, only to find out that no more knowledge can be attained beyond a certain limit. Also, you look at a land that is dead, then as soon as we shower it with water, it vibrates with life and grows all kinds of beautiful plants.
يَاأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ فِي رَيْبٍ مِنَ الْبَعْثِ فَإِنَّا خَلَقْنَاكُمْ مِنْ تُرَابٍ ثُمَّ مِنْ نُطْفَةٍ ثُمَّ مِنْ عَلَقَةٍ ثُمَّ مِنْ مُضْغَةٍ مُخَلَّقَةٍ وَغَيْرِ مُخَلَّقَةٍ لِنُبَيِّنَ لَكُمْ وَنُقِرُّ فِي الْأَرْحَامِ مَا نَشَاءُ إِلَىٰ أَجَلٍ مُسَمًّى ثُمَّ نُخْرِجُكُمْ طِفْلًا ثُمَّ لِتَبْلُغُوا أَشُدَّكُمْ وَمِنْكُمْ مَنْ يُتَوَفَّىٰ وَمِنْكُمْ مَنْ يُرَدُّ إِلَىٰ أَرْذَلِ الْعُمُرِ لِكَيْلَا يَعْلَمَ مِنْ بَعْدِ عِلْمٍ شَيْئًا وَتَرَى الْأَرْضَ هَامِدَةً فَإِذَا أَنْزَلْنَا عَلَيْهَا الْمَاءَ اهْتَزَّتْ وَرَبَتْ وَأَنْبَتَتْ مِنْ كُلِّ زَوْجٍ بَهِيجٍ
[22:6] This proves that GOD is the Truth, and that He revives the dead, and that He is Omnipotent.
ذَٰلِكَ بِأَنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الْحَقُّ وَأَنَّهُ يُحْيِي الْمَوْتَىٰ وَأَنَّهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
[22:7] And that the Hour is coming, no doubt about it, and that GOD resurrects those who are in the graves.
وَأَنَّ السَّاعَةَ آتِيَةٌ لَا رَيْبَ فِيهَا وَأَنَّ اللَّهَ يَبْعَثُ مَنْ فِي الْقُبُورِ