Is Evolution the Foundation of Biology?

by on

One of the most-repeated evolutionary mantras is that supposedly “nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.” In a recent article, a biology professor (who is an ardent evolutionist) at the University of Kentucky, Dr. James Krupa, explains that he teaches his non-major undergrad biology students evolution “at the beginning of a course, and as a recurring theme throughout the semester” because “evolution is the foundation upon which all biology rests.”

Two Kinds of Science

But is it really impossible to understand biology without understanding evolution? Well, the many PhD scientists who study biology but reject evolution—like anatomist Dr. David Menton and molecular geneticist Dr. Georgia Purdom (both on our staff)—would certainly disagree with this statement! You see, there are two different kinds of science: observational and historical science. Observational science deals directly with the present and is testable, observable, and repeatable. It’s what builds our technology and makes medical innovations.

Evolutionary ideas have little to do with observational science. Most scientists engaged in observational science rarely reference or refer to evolutionary ideas. However, there are instances where beliefs about evolution have actually held observational science back. For example, since researchers assumed evolution happened, they assumed that our bodies would be full of junk and useless leftovers from our evolutionary past. So many evolutionists didn’t bother to investigate the purposes of seemingly useless organs and structures like the appendix or the coccyx. But we now know that the organs and structures once labelled as vestigial have been found to have an important purpose. This is the same thing that happened with large sections of DNA. This DNA was labelled leftover junk because it didn't appear to do anything and the idea of genetic junk makes sense from an evolutionary perspective. However, we now know that these sections of DNA have a vital purpose—they are far from junk! So belief in evolution has held observational science back from making discoveries that contradicted evolutionary predictions. But, by and large, evolution really has little if anything to do with observational science. Since my debate with Bill Nye "the Science Guy" in 2014, I’ve been challenging evolutionists to name one piece of technology that could only have been developed starting with a belief in molecules-to-man evolution, and they (even Bill Nye) still haven’t named one. And they won’t, because there aren’t any!

Now the other kind of science is historical science. Historical science deals with the past and is therefore not directly testable, repeatable, or observable. Thus, what you believe about the past directly determines how you interpret the evidence. Evolutionary ideas fall into the realm of historical science, because they represent a way of thinking about the past. However, evolutionary ideas do not explain the evidence well, and they fail to make accurate predictions (as shown above!).

Isn’t Evolution Just a Theory?

Many well-meaning creationists will say “evolution is just a theory” when they are arguing with an evolutionist who presents evolution as a die-hard fact of nature. But, while well-intentioned, this is actually an argument that we think creationists shouldn’t use. You see, calling evolution a “theory” raises it to a level is really doesn’t deserve!

As Krupa notes in his article, there is a difference between how the general population views the idea of “theory” and how this word is used in scientific circles. Krupa defines a scientific theory as “a comprehensive explanation of some aspect of nature that is supported by a vast body of evidence generating testable and falsifiable predictions.” As we state in “Evolution: Not Even a Theory,” “A theory has its genesis in a hypothesis, which is a working assumption as to why we observe something—an educated guess. To test this assumption, scientists conduct experiments that either disprove or correlate with the hypothesis.”

Over time, if a hypothesis continues to stand up to scrutiny and many different experiments, the scientific community may begin referring to it as a “theory.” In essence, this means that because the hypothesis has not been disproved over many years and no other known hypothesis works, then we can be reasonably sure that it’s accurate.

Theories, however, are not irreproachable. If new technology allows better experimentation, for example, a theory may need to be discarded.

Krupa states, “In science, something can be both theory and fact. We know the existence of pathogens is a fact; germ theory provides testable explanations concerning the nature of disease. We know the existence of cells is a fact and that cell theory provides testable explanations of how cells function. Similarly, we know evolution is a fact and that evolutionary theories explain biological patterns and mechanisms.” Now, it is true that in science something can be both theory and fact, but it is not true that evolutionary ideas are both fact and theory. Ultimately, evolution really doesn’t even deserve to be called a theory.

You see, scientific theories are supposed to be the best explanation for the evidence as well as make successful predictions. Evolution rarely, if ever, does either. For example, if evolution were true we should expect to find thousands of transitional forms in the fossil record, and yet evolutionists can only produce a handful of highly controversial speculations. Also, evolution predicts a gradual change from simple to complex, and yet one of the lowest layers in the rock record, the Cambrian rock layer, records a veritable explosion of life and complexity with no ancestral fossils beneath that layer. There’s no gradual change from simple to complex!

Evolution doesn’t explain what we see in the world and it doesn’t make successful predictions, so really, according to Krupa’s definition of theory, evolution isn’t even a theory. Evolution is simply a way of explaining life naturalistically (or atheistically). It’s a worldview system through which evolutionists interpret the evidence, but it is the wrong worldview. Evolutionists need to start with God’s Word for the foundation for their thinking.

What Has Evolution Actually Done?

Krupa states, “I continue to teach biology as I do, because biology makes sense only in the light of evolution.” But what has evolution really done to further our understanding of biology? According to evolutionary ideas about the past, life originated from non-life at some point in the past. However, evolutionists have no plausible mechanism for how this could happen. Everything we see in nature confirms the law of biogenesis—life only comes from other life. Life never comes from non-life.

Evolution predicts that one kind slowly turns into another kind over millions of years. Evolutionists point to natural selection—an observable process in today’s world—as one of the main factors that brings about this upward-and-onward change. But does molecules-to-man evolution really contribute anything to our understanding of natural selection? No, it doesn’t. Natural selection results in a great deal of variety that allows different creatures to survive in different and changing environments. We can have lions living on the plains in Africa, tigers living in the jungles of India, cougars prowling our forests here in North America, and house cats sunning themselves on our porches. A lot of variety, but cats always produce cats. We never see one kind of creature changing into another kind. For one kind to change into another requires an addition of brand-new information into the genome—this is what evolution absolutely requires. And yet there is no known mechanism that can add this type of information into the genome! Natural selection typically results in a loss, not a gain of information. So evolution doesn’t help us understand the diversity we see in nature. Actually, evolution is the opposite of what we observe!

Biology certainly makes sense without Darwin. Creationists were doing biology before Darwin, and creationists continue to do biology without Darwin today. Instead of starting with man’s ideas about the past, we need to start with God’s infallible Word. God was the only one who was there in the very beginning, and He recorded for us what happened and how He did it. We can trust God’s Word over man’s ideas. Instead of starting our thinking about Earth’s history from an evolutionary perspective, we need to think biblically and develop our models based on the unchanging truth of the history recorded in God’s Word.

Our ministry friend Ray Comfort recently received some encouraging feedback on Facebook, and he shared it with us. This brief story highlights how those blinded from the truth by evolutionary ideas can be shown the problems with evolution and be shown how biblical creation does explain the evidence, and then be pointed to the Creator, our Savior, Jesus Christ. The person said, “One of my brother's biggest hang ups for believing the Bible was Evolution. He just couldn't accept the Bible as truth with the indoctrination of Evolution in his head. He watched one of Ken Ham's videos showing how Creation is not only plausible, but that it's necessary for life to exist. He was able to let evolution go and come to Christ! It was awesome! I love seeing road blocks fall away and people able to move on and give their life to Jesus!”

To learn more about this topic, I encourage you to watch Dr. David Menton’s educational yet humorous presentation Does Biology Make Sense Without Darwin? You can purchase this resource in our store or view it online for free.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,

This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

Ken Ham’s Daily Email

Email me with Ken’s daily email:

Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Learn more

  • Customer Service 800.778.3390