At the dawn of evolutionary theory, scientists considered bacteria to be quite simple. They are the most “primitive” of living organisms, after all. Bacteria were the closest, scientists said, to that first life that sprang out of the muck of prehistoric earth. But discoveries in the ensuing centuries would reveal startling complexity in the tiniest forms of life. One of these was the bacterial flagellum.

Flagella are used for locomotion, propelling many bacteria through their watery world. A flagellum is composed of a filament and an electrical motor. This true rotary motor is capable of over 1000 revolutions per second, yet it is as tiny as a virus, thus smaller than any motor man has ever invented. Its structure requires more than forty different kinds of proteins; if it is missing just one, it cannot function. Furthermore, electricity is supplied to the motor by a process on the cell’s plasma membrane.

The way that flagella operate also differs among bacteria. A bacterium may have one flagellum that can rotate in opposite directions, depending on which direction the cell wants to travel. Or a bacterium may have two flagella at opposite ends of the cell, each one used to move in a certain direction. Some cells have flagella all over them. When the bacterium wants to go somewhere, these flagella filaments form a “helical bundle” at either end of the cell and rotate uniformly.

There is just no way that flagella can be created through evolution. Would anyone believe that a man-made engine was formed from natural forces? Could you point to an electrical motor and convince someone that the wind shaped its parts with sand over millions of years? They would say that you are a fool. But a motor invisible to the unaided eye, which would be useless without a set number of parts, is said to be the product of chance, a motor whose workings still baffle biologists. They praise mechanical engineers, but scoff at the very existence of the greatest Engineer of all the universe. They should be ashamed of themselves. “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.” Romans 1:22.



Note: Information from “The Amazing Cell” by Dr. Dudley Eirich and “Design in living organisms (motors)” by Jonathan Sarfati, all found at