Hug Evolution, Further Evangelism


WORLD editor-in-chief Marvin Olasky asks, “Should we hug evolution to further evangelism?”

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Framing his question in the biblical narrative of Queen Esther, Olasky writes, “In every generation moments of truth arise” and names abortion, same-sex marriage, and evolution as today’s “three great cultural flashpoints.” He goes on, “We can hedge on them and justify our hedging: Playing it cool here will help me gain for Christ people who would otherwise walk away.”

Should Christians bow to popular views on such issues in the hopes of making Christianity more “seeker friendly”? (Most readers should know the view of Answers in Genesis, which we’ll note shortly.) If “God’s call to deliver the message of the gospel, individually and collectively” is truly part of our mission, shouldn’t we avoid needless controversy over esoteric issues like whether mutations can lead to new genetic information?

Continuing with a focus on the “flash point” of evolution, Olasky writes,

[A]ttempts to unify antitheses generally defy logic. . . . How can Creation be a sovereignly guided sequence and at the same time a sequence of chance, with random mutations and survival of the fittest? . . . [T]heistic evolution contradicts the biblical account. . . .

Theistic evolutionists logically have to discount other parts of the Bible as well. It’s not just that when we de-historicize parts it's hard to stop. (Were Noah, Abraham, and Moses also metaphors?) We also have to discredit Paul the apostle, who cited early Genesis as fact (see Romans 5, 1 Corinthians 11 and [1 Corinthians 15], and 1 Timothy 2). . . . For that matter, Jesus also saw it that way (Matthew 23, Luke 11).

Olasky concludes, “For such a time as this we must learn to trust God to change hearts without our having to back away from the Bible.” This lines up well with the view of Answers in Genesis: compromise on Genesis ultimately undermines God’s Word completely, forcing a domino effect of de-historicization and “metaphorization” that crashes straight through the gospel. Too much of the church has mistakenly thought it can abandon Genesis and continue to evangelize without abandoning the rest of Scripture. But history (e.g., survey data from church denominations) has shown that the ultimate result of such compromise is to show the world that all of Scripture, like Genesis, can be safely reinterpreted as helpful moral tales and parables—but not the Truth.

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