I have every sympathy with those who find this question difficult to answer. In my teens I believed that creation was true, but during my University years and afterwards I began to compromise.
I became a theoretical creationist
on Sundays, and a practical evolutionist for the rest of the week. In practice
I thought little about the matter, although it remained a mild irritant in the
background. Later I worked out a fairly comfortable position as a theistic evolutionist—that
is, I accepted the evolutionary theory as true, but wherever an atheist would
write “chance,” I would substitute “God”
or “Providence.” How man and animals evolved, I did not know,
but I was certain that whatever means had been used, God was in control. Recently,
however, the evidence has compelled me to become a creationist. I say compelled
because my whole medical training and indeed all that I hear from day to day
in books and the media, shouts evolution at me. It is hard to abandon the thought
processes of a lifetime.
Even convinced evolutionists find it difficult to account for the origin of the worlds from nothing and of life from primordial slime.
This recent change of opinion has not occurred because I discovered
creation to be more scientifically credible than evolution. Even convinced evolutionists
find it difficult to account for the origin of the worlds from nothing and of
life from primordial slime; they wonder at the complexity and beauty of design
in nature, as they often acknowledge by giving the word a capital “N”—Nature.
I am a creationist because I believe that Creation alone conforms to the total
thrust of Scripture as it is unfolded from Genesis to Revelation, and particularly
as the Gospel is revealed in the New Testament.
Most devout Christians ask, “But does it matter? Why
rock the boat? The battle, creation versus evolution, was fought (and lost)
by previous generations of Christians. Why bring it up now?” But it
does matter, for the following reasons:
(If you are a Christian please ponder this deeply with an open
Bible and prayer.)
- Genesis 1-9 purports to be history rather than poetry or mythology. Writers
throughout Scripture, particularly in the Psalms and the New Testament,
treat it as history, as did our Lord. Genesis is more quoted in the rest
of the Bible than any other book. If the early chapters of Genesis are allegory,
what about the walls of Jericho, Jonah and the great fish, the virgin birth,
and the resurrection of Christ? At what point do you say, “But that
I can’t believe?”
- Unless the world was originally created “good” it is difficult
to see how man could “fall” From what state did he fall? If
Adam was derived from some pre-existing hominoid what is the significance
of sin? If there was no historic fall, why is there need of a Saviour?
- Adam was told that the penalty for sin would be death, but what thrust
had that if millions of animals, including hominoids, had died over thousands
of years? In both Old and New Testaments sin is repeatedly coupled with
death: “The wages of sin is death,”
Romans 6:23. Adam’s sin is specifically linked with death in
Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15.
In the latter passage it is certain that physical death is intended.
If death occurred before Adam sinned the total Gospel is negated, including
our hope of the resurrection.
- The evolutionary method involving violence, pain and death is totally
out of keeping with the character of God as revealed in Scripture. Our God
is a God of joy, peace and love. He destroyed the Earth at the time of Noah
because it was filled with violence. The Lord said, “I
will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land from man
to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that
I have made them” (Genesis 6:7). It is noteworthy that it was
the violence of animals as well as man that God deplored.
- Atheistic evolutionists have difficulty accounting for altruism. Where
do love and philanthropy come from in a world evolving by chance mutation
and natural selection? Theistic evolutionists have a problem too. If God
used the evolutionary method, then He is the author of pain and suffering
and evil. God becomes a devil. Only an initially perfect world, created
by a loving God but ruined by the entrance of sin can account for both
the good and evil which we find around us.
- The origin of many basic doctrines can be traced to the first chapters
of Genesis. For example, it is impossible for the narrative of the creation
of Eve and out of Adam—woman out of man—to be anything other
than fanciful mythology or historic truth. At least seven fundamental Biblical
doctrines are linked with the last three verses of Genesis 2,
the passage which recounts the creation of Eve:
|The headship of man over woman||1 Cor. 11:3, 8-9; Eph. 5:22-24
|Woman in the church||1 Tim. 2:11-13
|Sexual immorality||1 Cor. 6:16
|Husbands to love their wives||Eph. 5:28-29, 31
|Christ’s love for His body the Church||Eph. 5:25-32; 1:22-23; Col. 1:15-18, 24
If Eve was born per via naturalis, from some pre-existing
animal, then all these doctrines are based on a misleading myth.
- The Judeo-Christian pattern of one day’s rest in seven follows directly
on the fact that the world was created in six days and God rested on the
seventh (Genesis 2:2, Exodus 20:11).
- Evolution (including presumably theistic evolution) is a continuing process.
Darwin’s book, The Origin of Species, was subtitled, The preservation
of favoured races in the struggle for life. Evolution provides the scientific
orthodoxy for the philosophies of Marxism, fascism, racism, apartheid and
- Evolution lowers man from the “image of God” to the level
of an animal. Why then should he not behave as one, in his own life and
- The longevity of Adam, Seth and others (Genesis 5) can be nothing but mythology if evolution is true. Primitive man
rarely lived much beyond forty years.
A Christian has the following options:
- To assume that Genesis 1-9
is allegory, myth or poetry not to be taken literally. But if so,
what do we do with the rest of the Bible? Why stop there?
- To hold on to both creation and evolution and try to reconcile the two.
This state is unstable and readily leads to liberalism.
- To ignore the Old Testament and make an existential leap to a shallow
- To accept that “by faith we understand that
the worlds were made by the word of God” (Hebrews 11:3). Only
in this, the Scriptural way, do we find release from the tensions of the
Q&A Genesis—Theistic Evolution