How old is the universe? How did it come into existence? Did organic life come from inorganic particles? Are bacteria distant relatives of humans? Is the theory of evolution correct, or is creationism the truth? These are questions that the sciences wrestle, and many scientists argue, often with conviction, that the answers are both known and proven. But this debate really has little to do with scientific observation or evidence. The real question at the heart of the debate is this: Do you believe in God?
Let’s first explore some of the science. Charles Darwin’s observation from the mid-19th century, recorded in “On the Origin of Species”, does not in any way prove (macro)evolution. He even states in his book there is a major problem with his theory: the fossil layer has no “intermediate forms” of species to support his theory. In the last 100-plus years of digging-up fossils around the world, no progress has been made to support his theory. This is such a problem for these scientists that many do not stand by Darwin’s theory and have created amendments (see “punctuated equilibrium”).
Another problem for Darwin’s famous theory is the “simple” cell. Over 100 years ago, the cell appeared simple and thought easy to have evolved. However, it was not that the smallest unit of life was ever simple, but our knowledge of it at the time was. Move forward and we now see the cell as a fully functional machine, with multiple units that code DNA and assemble specific proteins for specific jobs. These scientific observations clearly show that the cell could not have evolved from a simpler entity (see “irreducible complexity).
Many scientists who support evolution see these scientific observations, yet do not change their opinions. Why? Because it has nothing to do with scientific observations, but has everything to do with whether or not they want to see God. This is nothing new, as Paul wrote in his letter to the early Christians in Rome. “For although they know God, they did not want to honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:22-23). How else do you explain thoughts like this, from Prof. George Walt, an evolutionary biologist:
“The reasonable view was to believe in spontaneous generation; the only alternative, to believe in a single, primary act of supernatural creation…Most modern biologists, having reviewed with satisfaction the downfall of this hypothesis, yet unwilling to accept the alternative belief in a special creation, are left with nothing…One has only to contemplate the magnitude of this task (spontaneous generation, evolution) to concede that it’s impossible. Yet here we are, I believe, of spontaneous evolution.”
You see, despite the science showing Prof. Walt that spontaneous generation (which is the theory that organic life arose from inorganic particles) was “impossible”, he would not or could not (does this sound a little like “Green eggs and Ham”?) accept the alternative, which is that there is a creator. This exemplifies many (if not all) the scientists who put their faith in the theory of evolution: that despite continued expansion in scientific studies that diminish the theory of evolution, they continue to support evolution, and in doing so, they answer the important question wrong.
“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the Earth” (Genesis 1:1).