2.7 The So-Called “Fundamental Law of Biogenetics” (OB7)

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Some people are of the opinion that, after God had created everything, He did not interfere with the operation of this “wound-up clock.” This idea is definitely not found in the Bible.

Evolution: Of all Darwin’s (1809–1882) contemporaries, Ernst Haeckel (1834–1919) was the most vehement German adherent of evolution. He formulated the “fundamental law of biogenetics,” which states that animals and man reflect all stages of their evolutionary descent during their embryonic development. He and his successors proclaimed this “law” as one of the strongest arguments in support of evolution. This line of reasoning still crops up in present-day school textbooks.

Scientific Objections: Even the convinced evolutionist Bernhard Rensch accedes [R1, p. 89–90], “The ‘basic biogenetic law’ formulated by Haeckel states that the development of individuals provides a brief recapitulation of their descent. This view is not valid, because one cannot equate embryonic stages with the adult stages of their predecessors.” D.S. Peters of the Senckenberg Institute (Frankfurt/Main; Germany) makes it even clearer [P3, p. 67]: “The basic biogenetic law as well as all similar statements lead to only one conclusion: Forget it. This sounds radical, but it is the only measure that will prevent phylogenetics to be practiced in the future with false and irrelevant arguments.” He pleads that “we should now lay the fundamental law of biogenetics to rest in the archives of history.” Erich Blechschmidt of Göttingen, a well-known authority on human embryology, based his “law of the conservation of individuality” on decades of research. This law is just as important for biology as the law of the conservation of energy is for physics [B4]. He exposed Haeckel’s basic law as one of the most profound fallacies. The so-called gill slits appearing early in the development of the human fetus was seen as providing historical proof of the development of man, as a kind of recapitulation. Blechschmidt’s research enabled him to refute this assumption, because the “gill slits” are simply folds lying between the forehead and the heart clump at one stage of this purposeful and dynamic growth process. (See [J3] for further particulars.)

The Bible: Some people are of the opinion that, after God had created everything, He did not interfere with the operation of this “wound-up clock.” This idea (deism), which originated in England in the time of the “Enlightenment,” is definitely not found in the Bible. God is the ever-active Lord who rules history, as is emphatically clear from the example of the Israelites. In particular, He intervened when His Son Jesus Christ was sent to the world. And even the embryonic development of every single person implies a direct act of the Creator: “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Ps. 139:13–14). When Jeremiah was called, God told him that this assignment had been planned for him before his conception: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations” (Jer. 1:5). The Psalmist also knew of these creative acts of God performed long before his birth (Ps. 139:16).

If our present-day laws were based on the Bible and not on evolutionistic views, abortion would not have become commonplace. In Germany, mothers’ bodies have become the prime site for committing murder, since the number of lives snuffed out in one year is equal to the entire population of the German town of Braunschweig. There is one abortion for every three births. This is happening in many of the richest countries of the world and it is motivated by “social convenience.” The sin of lying is added to the sin of murder.

Did God Use Evolution?

According to the view of theistic evolution, God started the process of evolution and guided and steered it over millions of years. As an information scientist, Werner Gitt critically analyzes and rejects the assumptions and consequences of the doctrine of theistic evolution.

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