Can A Christian Believe in the Bible and the Theory of Evolution?
Introduction. Everywhere that you turn in our world today
the Christian confronts the theory of evolution. In movies, television shows,
books, school and in the thinking of friends we encounter in the world. Not
simply in considerations of science, but in children‘s shows, in television
comedies, in novels and elsewhere. Many Christians have accepted what the world
has to say about this subject because it is presented as if there is no
question about the truth of the theory. Seldom is it pointed out that there are
really two types of evolution that must be considered: macroevolution &
Microevolution- Species make adaptations to their environment
over time. (E.g. Insects change to imitate the color of trees or plants they
are around - birds beaks may grow long or short given feeding conditions.) This
type of evolution is a fact.
Macroevolution- Species can change from species to species over time. (E.g.
Monkeys can become men.) This has never been proven and in fact runs contrary
to certain facts of science.
Even so, some Christians have accepted not only
microevolution but macro evolution as well. The question is whether this can
really be done on reasonable grounds by those who accept the Bible as the
inspired word of God. (Note: By “inspired of God” I mean that it is rational
communication from Deity to humanity regarding real people and places and
events - not simply something that is wholly metaphorical or allegorical). In
this lesson we will consider whether this can be done or not.
I. Time Problems.
Macro-evolution depends upon one necessary factor
- time. There would have to be time for the millions of changes that could even
by the farthest stretch of the imagination explan life as it now exists. I
would argue that even if you had billions of years it wouldn‘t resolve the
problems. There are scientific reasons to question the theories that say the
universe is billions or millions of years old. But regardless of this the Bible
makes some clear assertions regarding the age of the earth and certain events
that do not harmonize with macro-evolutionary theories.
- Six days of creation. Genesis 1:31-2:2;
Note: the comparison is God‘s work in 6
days & man‘s work. If 1 day =10,000 then two different things are
- The flood. In order for there to be anywhere
near enough time for macro-evolution to even be imaginable the earth has
to have existed for millions of years. Geologists used to explain much of
the geological changes on earth in light of the worldwide flood recorded
in Genesis. Modern evolutionary geologists deny a worldwide flood and try
to explain changes in terms of slow change of a long time. Genesis
7:17-20,24; Matthew 24:37,38
- Bible timelines. Genesis 5 (look at example).
An examination of the timelines & genealogies of the Bible can be
figured to bring the age of the earth to 6-7000 years old. There is
physical evidence which supports this dating. If we are to accept the
Bible we cannot simply ignore these claims.
II. Species Problems.
Marco-evolutionary theory contends that all life
came from single cell organisms that evolved into multi-cellular creatures that
then changed into the complex life that exists now. In this view the
distinctions between species are really artificial. They come about only
through minor adaptations multiplied over time. A scientific problem with this
is the fact that species cannot cross breed. When near species do this the
offspring is incapable of reproducing.
- Each after its own kind. Genesis 1:21,24-25;
6:20; 7:14 Note: word for “kind” Hebrew mien same word that is used in modern Hebrew for the word “species.”
- Distinct creation of man. Macro-Evolutionary
theory has no distinct origin of man as opposed to that of animal life.
The Bible clearly does. Genesis 1:26-28; 2:7; 21,22
III. People Problems.
Macro-evolutionary theories are quite diverse but
all rest on the basic premise that mankind evolved as a species. While some
genetics studies suggest that all humans are related to a single mother, they
contend that this one woman came to exists from a development of a species as a
group. The Bible presents the origin of humanity from one man and one woman.
- Adam & Eve. Genesis 3:20; 4:3
- One man. Roman 5:12-19 Here Adam is pictured
as typical of Christ. If there was not one man Adam - then why believe
there was one man Christ?