Evolution V. Creation
It’s time to talk about one of the most sensitive debates in modern memory. Elements of which we see in almost all facets of life. Direct reference and undertones in so many different mediums. The mere mention of God or of evolution will always perk someone in the room’s ears. I myself have been very involved in study on this topic and I do, in my capacity as a Bible teacher, often get into conversations with people about their strongly held belief in evolution and how they cannot commit to belief in God because of it. I have been on the receiving end of the hostile debaters and seen many fellow Christians do the same so I think it’s about time we demystified this situation. This article won’t be what you might think it is but this information I believe needs to be read and shared for both believers and no believers alike. It’s time to have some peace.
This may be hard for some to read because it will paint both believers and non-believers in a somewhat unflattering light in some cases, I would ask you to hear me out.
I had a conversation recently with a young man in a grocery store of all places about this topic which brought to my mind many other similar conversations I have had personally, read about, and even seen on video. This has been a debate since evolution because a popular and accepted idea. We all know Charles Darwin and his famous voyage and study in the Galapagos islands. He observed the difference in beak shapes in fiches there and formulated a theory that actually wasn’t so much his but had been floating around in some manner or another for a while. Darwin’s grandfather as a matter of fact did have some part to play in the early foundations of what eventually became his own grandson’s theory. Charles Darwin’s father himself was a medical doctor and with this lineage of scientific men in his family it isn’t hard to see how he followed the in that field. Charles was originally going to follow his father and become a doctor but as that seemed out of reach because he was passionate about nature and couldn’t concentrate on his medical training. This is what led him to study animal life and of course then to put together the evolutionary theory. Darwin did not end his life as a Christian however he did in his younger years. He was baptized and attended church and as a matter of fact when he failed out of medical training and before he went on his famous voyage he considered on his father recommendation becoming a clergy member himself.
So why do I say all this about Darwin? I mention this to give you, the reader, a little visual of the emergence of this man whom we can sometimes think of as evil. I use the word evil because that is the extent of passion I see in people who speak against evolution. They do so as though evolution is a disproof of God. This man Darwin was not the seed of evil and destruction that we sometimes think of him as.
I realize that many forgo this part of the though and jump right into which side they believe is right and which is wrong but myself, I look at issues a little deferentially. This is the part where things might start being a little unpleasant. The unfortunate fact is that a lot of people, on both sides, don’t really know anything about the truth or the facts, they only know what side they like. I have had debates with strong supporters of evolution whom literally had no idea what evolution was about. all they knew is that they thought it was “cool” that some animals might turn into other animals. It seems hard to understand why a person would make a choice for something they don’t care enough to know about but they will happily argue to their last breath for it. I have of course spoken to Christian people who use the stereotypical “God did it” stance which of course is the same thing from the other side. This article will be a longer one and I hope that you will join me on this journey.
I leave you with this parting thought to ponder before the next installment is available.
You might be wondering why I would say that evolution and creation aren’t enemies, I know that is the popular view especially with the growing number of websites, book, and video online that show the debate between the two. Scientifically and philosophically the points for either side are argued and most the time just as in a sporting event there are those cheering for their favorite. Here however is the issue with it.
Creationism, as suggested by its name is an explanation for creation. In other words, no matter how much further this a person takes it in their debating, creationism is the term given to the theological view that God created life. Evolution on the other hand has specifically to do with what happens once there is life. In other words, these two ideas don’t exactly cross one another, sure they both have to do with life on our planet and possibly even other planets but the fact is one is about how it came to be and the other is about what happened once it already was.
It might surprise you to know that there are evolutionists whom are also Christians. They believe God created the life and the biological mechanism for evolution as well and that once he created life this mechanism took over shaped the future of that organism. There are evolutionary scientists whom while they may not be Christians do recognize in writings that there is a missing element and even Charles Darwin himself has made comments about his own theory that show that he himself knew that there was a big gap between the creation of life and its evolution.
Most people have heard of the “primordial soup” theory. This is the theory that before there was life there where pools of various chemicals on earth in the extreme ancient past. The theory suggests that the chemicals needed to produce the building blocks of life were present and in similar to the way we believe stars’ form, some spark of energy triggered a chemical reaction resulting in simple life. Some theorize it was lightning, some say it may have been geothermal or radiation and I’m sure there are even more theories about it out there. In the 1950s a famous experiment was conducted by 2 scientists named Stanley Miller and Harold Urey. They took the chemical conditions they believed to be present at the time that scientists theorized this evolutionary process to have begun, and did just as the theory suggested and introduced an energy source in this case electricity. As the atmospheric chemicals traveled through the apparatus they were hit with the electricity and then the resulting resin was collected in the trap at the bottom of the apparatus. This was meant to test whether or not the building blocks of life could be produced by such a process and if so could it be the origin of the evolutionary process.
The results of this experiment is kind of a mixed bag. It wasn’t realized at first but this experiment did produce, not exactly the building block of life but something similar. That seemed like a win for this theory but there’s more to it. For this one positive there were two negatives, one being that the product though similar would have never produced viable life. It was chemically incorrect and unstable. The second issue being that they chemical compounds used to simulate early atmosphere where also found to be incorrect and used in incorrect measure so what was produced, even though it was already insufficient to prove the theory, was also in correctly produced that whole experiment was pretty much a loss.
When I first read about this my thought was, “sure maybe it wasn’t all the way correct but if they refine the experiment and try again maybe they could get it right” I mean this was the process I was familiar with, when you have a partially successful method you refine the viable elements of the process and remove the nonviable and each time you do so you move closer to a fully viable process. To that end I researched this experiment and scientist who had worked on the results of the miller Urey experiment and those whom had taken it father and refined it just as I thought should have been done and what I eventually learned is that the results were changing yes but not really getting any closer to actually producing viable material.
I bring this up for a couple reasons. First of all, there have been a few big scientific breakthroughs in my lifetime that have cause people to assume that science had in fact disproved Gods existence. Evolution is a theory that gets more and more popular every day, I have the privilege of being able to speak with people both adept and novice in this area quite often. I know it’s a stereotype that Christians thing evolution is evil and Godless but I don’t hold that view. As I have outlined in this paper I don’t see that evolution and creation can coexist. Sure there are elements where these two world views will collide and I’m not saying that I myself believe in evolution, I am however saying that there is no need for the hostility in this discussion. Evolution doesn’t eliminate God just like creationism doesn’t eliminate evolution.
Evolution and Creation aren’t enemies.