When a false god is called upon to solve gaps in knowledge, this is sometimes referred to as “god of the gaps.” For example, if someone did not know that ice is formed when water freezes and proposed that there was an “ice god” that occasionally causes ice to spontaneously appear, then they would be guilty of using a god-of-the-gaps explanation.
Atheists have often accused Christians of invoking God to fill in a gap in scientific knowledge. Even the great scientist Isaac Newton has been accused by atheists of using a god-of-the-gaps explanation when he said that the universe reveals evidence of design.1 But creationists like Newton do not believe in a god of gaps, but a God of absolute necessity. Newton recognized that the universe could not exist without the supernatural creative power of an almighty Creator.
Newton and most of the other founding fathers of science could see that the universe can only be fully explained with a combination of natural and supernatural explanations. Creationists only invoke God in origins when a supernatural action is necessary according to the laws of science. For example, according to the conservation of matter and energy (the first law of thermodynamics), it is impossible for a universe to come into existence without the supernatural intervention of an all-powerful being.
The Bible is scientifically correct when it states that divine supernatural power is required to create the universe (Genesis 1:1) and life (Genesis 2:7) and different kinds of creatures (Genesis 1:24). The Bible is also scientifically accurate that divine supernatural power is required to uphold all things (Colossians 1:17). Rather than being accused of superstition, the Bible should be commended for correctly identifying the areas of origins where a supernatural Creator is necessary.
Creationists are sometimes accused of ignoring scientific evidence and being anti-science. But belief in God in no way diminishes zeal for how life works. The great pioneer scientists of the 17th to 20th centuries were inspired by their belief in God. Likewise, modern-day scientists who are biblical creationists find their belief in a purposeful universe to be a help in their work.
Biblical creationists are always eager to learn from real scientific discoveries in every area of science. I personally have designed rockets and spacecraft for the European Space Agency and NASA using the latest scientific knowledge in physics and engineering. I have a patent on a special gearbox that was used on the world’s largest civilian spacecraft and have been awarded three national prizes for the development of technology for spacecraft.
The only “science” that creationists do not use is the speculative science of evolution that has nothing to do with useful operational science. Evolutionary ideas like “monkey-to-man charts” that supposedly chart human evolution are based on pure speculation and not useful to science and technology in any way.
Ironically, it is actually evolution that is blatantly guilty of god-of-the-gaps explanations. When secular biology books attempt to explain why creatures or plants have a certain design, the answer is almost always “evolution did it” or “natural selection did it” without any explanation as to how the design feature could evolve by chance.
This is what Dawkins has written about the origin of life:
We have no evidence about what the first step in making life was, but we do know the kind of step it must have been. It must have been whatever it took to get natural selection started . . . by some process as yet unknown.2
The above quote is a classic example of evolution being a god-of-the-gaps explanation. There is a total gap in what evolution can explain about the origin of life, and Dawkins invokes the god of evolution to fill in the gap and asserts that natural selection “must” have gotten started somehow. But natural selection by itself cannot create anything; it can only select from things already created.
When my daughters did a two-year advanced biology course at high school in the UK, the teachers kept saying that “evolution did this” and “natural selection did that” for the origin of features like fins and wings and hearts and lungs. Near the end of the course, one of my daughters challenged the teacher and said, “Miss, you keep saying ‘evolution did it,’ but you never actually explain how evolution did it.” The teacher had to confess that my daughter made a valid criticism, and the rest of class agreed.
Since evolution has no credible evidence, biology books use examples of adaptation as supposed examples of evolution. Darwin’s finches and resistant bacteria are held up as classic examples of evolution even though they are not evolution at all. These adaptations involve no new information, but simply a shuffling of existing genes.
Ironically, it is evolutionists, not creationists, who are guilty of ignoring scientific evidence.3 Over the last 70 years there have been many thousands of experiments with sophisticated equipment trying to create life in the laboratory from dead matter and energy.4 However, all of these experiments have clearly demonstrated that life cannot come about by chance. Evolutionists have a choice. Either they accept the laboratory experiments or ignore them and put faith in the god of evolution. They have chosen to ignore the evidence and exercise blind faith in chance.
Evolutionary philosophy holds back scientific progress by seeking false evolutionary explanations of origins. If you refuse to believe that a jumbo jet was designed, it will affect the way you investigate the complexity of the aircraft. If you believe that the aircraft evolved by chance, you will not have your mind open to possibilities of coordinated design. When the human genome was discovered to have far more information than expected, evolutionists immediately jumped to the conclusion that it was “junk” DNA because evolution predicts bad design not sophisticated design. However, subsequent work showed that the junk DNA was not junk at all, but highly coordinated information with important functions. That example shows how evolution holds back science.
A few years ago I spoke to a senior professor of microbiology at my university (who is an agnostic) and asked what he thought of the theory of abiogenesis—the theory that life can evolve from dead matter. He said the concept was a type of superstitious black magic. The biology professor had no religious bias and had been taught the dogma of evolution for decades, but he could still see that abiogenesis was not real science but so speculative that it could be called black magic.
When Darwin published his Origin of Species more than 150 years ago, one of the problems with his theory was that there was a missing link between man and apes. That missing link is still missing today despite extensive searches for fossil evidence of evolution all over the world. Fossil evidence shows that humans have always been strikingly different from apes. Humans walk on two legs, whereas apes walk on all four limbs. Humans have an arched foot, whereas apes have a flexible foot like a hand. Fossil evidence shows that no ape-like creature has ever had an arched foot for walking upright. As with every other aspect of evolution, the evolutionist ignores the gaps and encourages everyone to put their faith in the god of evolution.
I recently talked with another senior professor of microbiology at my university (another agnostic), and he made a surprisingly frank admission about evolution being a “god of the gaps.” He is not a creationist but like many biologists can see the serious weaknesses in the theory of evolution (although he keeps his views discreet for fear of losing his job). This microbiologist told me that evolution can be described as a “magic wand.” He said that he has noticed how even the experts say “evolution did this” and “natural selection did that” without any actual explanation being given and no demonstration in the laboratory. He said that the evolutionist can explain any aspect of origins by simply waving a magic wand and saying “evolution did it.”
Evolution makes no useful contribution to scientific and technological advances. However, there is an unwritten rule in the modern secular biology community that after completing a scientific study (on a topic not linked to evolution), evolution is mentioned in the write-up as being the explanation for the origin of features of design. In the same way that a religious essay is finished by paying homage to a particular god, so in modern secular biology essays are finished by paying homage to evolution. I have personally worked on biology-related projects where this is exactly what has happened. The end result is that the community blindly believes that the god of evolution must be true.
Biblical creation versus evolution is not “faith versus science,” but a worldview that includes God versus a worldview that has excluded God. Evolution is not a scientific theory because it has an unjustified assumption that God was not involved in origins. It is wrong for Christians to be accused of having a hidden religious agenda because biblical creation openly declares its worldview. Ironically, it is actually evolution that hides its atheistic agenda by pretending to be just science. If Isaac Newton and the other great scientists were here today, they would be astonished and saddened at the atheistic bias in modern secular science.
In modern society, a scientist is not allowed to say “God did it” for any aspect of creation, whether it is ultimate origins or the origin of any detailed design feature. The phrase “God did it” is seen as anti-scientific. But if God is the author of creation, then He deserves acknowledgement and credit for His work. And if God is the author of creation, then scientific investigation can only be helped by recognizing God as Creator.
If you refused to believe that a jumbo jet had been designed, then that would be dishonoring to the designers. How much more dishonoring it is when secular science and the secular media refuse to acknowledge that creation has a Designer. Thankfully there are many scientists today who are prepared to acknowledge the Creator despite the risk to their jobs and careers. Such scientists can have the satisfaction of knowing they stand shoulder to shoulder with the greatest scientists that ever lived such as Newton, Kepler, Pascal, Faraday, Maxwell, Kelvin, and Flemming. And by the way, the last three great scientists in this list knew of Darwin’s theory and rejected it—a fact that secular science has never publicized.