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Reproductive Habits

Hall of Life—Origins of Life Exhibits

on December 21, 2015

How did sexual reproduction come about?

Richard Dawkins, a leading evolutionary proponent, says:

To say, as I have, that good genes can benefit from the existence of sex whereas bad genes can benefit from its absence, is not the same thing as explaining why sex is there at all. There are many theories of why sex exists, and none of them is knock-down convincing. (Richard Dawkins, Climbing Mount Improbable. Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin Books, 1997, p. 75.)

Consider the scenario required for sexual reproduction to develop. Two individuals of the same species need to acquire the mutations that lead to each only passing on half of their chromosomes (in a very complex process known as meiosis) at the same time and place in history. They need to develop male and female sex organs, and everything associated with these complex reproductive organs. These two individuals then need to find each other and mate. The two cells need to be able to combine together to form a new life.

While the advantages to sexual reproduction are often provided as evidence for evolution, the mechanism is rarely explained. A seeming advantage does not require that it develop in the first place. Additionally, sexual reproduction is more costly and less efficient than asexual reproduction—so how can sexual reproduction be an advantage?

The ability to reproduce sexually or asexually is difficult to explain within a non-biblical worldview. Of course, we know from the Bible that God created things to produce “after their kind” (see Genesis 1).

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