Creation vs. Evolution: The Battle for Truth
Richard Dawkins, noted scientific scholar, ethologist,1 and author, describes someone who does not believe in evolution this way: “It is absolutely safe to say that if you meet somebody who claims not to believe in evolution, that person is ignorant, stupid or insane—or wicked, but I’d rather not consider that.”2
According to a November 23, 2004, CBS poll, Dawkins reportedly described a majority of Americans. The poll claims to show that “Americans do not believe that humans evolved,…only 13 percent of those polled say that God was not involved [in creation],” and “about two-thirds of Americans want creationism taught along with evolution.”3
In his best-selling book The Blind Watchmaker, Dawkins argued that the universe exists without design: “I want to persuade the reader, not just that Darwinian worldview happens to be true, but that it is the only known theory that could, in principle, solve the mystery of our existence.”4 And Dawkins is absolutely sure he is right.
Others who share his self-confidence are the editors of ScienceWeek. In their January 23, 2005, editorial they slammed creationism as “blasphemy”; accused creationists of being primitive thinkers who “believe the Earth is as flat as a pancake, a few thousand years old, and resting on the backs of four giant elephants”; and warned America to keep “religionists” out of public education because they “subvert the public school teaching of science.”5
Ken Ham, president and founder of Answers in Genesis–US (AiG) and a leading spokesman on creation, has been ridiculed and raked over the coals recently by the secular press concerning AiG’s construction of a $25 million Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky, near Cincinnati, Ohio. AiG’s Web site says the museum “will proclaim to the world that the Bible is the supreme authority in all matters of faith and practice and in every area it touches on.”6
Andrew Kantor, a columnist with USA Today, called the museum a “national embarrassment” that uses “fake ‘science’ to convince gullible people of silly things.”7
The great divide between those who believe in creation and those who don’t has existed for centuries. However, evolutionists are becoming increasingly aggressive and more determined than ever to wipe God from what they consider the Big Bang-created landscape.
How far back does this big lie go? As early as the sixth century B.C. there were Greeks who denied the concept of intelligent design. Biographer Desmond King-Hele wrote that Anaximenes believed life “originated in water…[and] began spontaneously in primordial slime.” Another Greek, he wrote, believed men “developed, by gradual stages, from fish.”8 In the first century A.D. the apostle paul confronted the pagan but intelligent Athenians with a simple explanatory statement on creation, referring to “God, who made the world and everything in it” (Acts 17:24).
Even in the midst of 18th-century “Christian” Europe, naturalists such as Swedish botanist Carolus Linnaeus and Frenchman Georges de Buffon raised questions about the concept of creation; yet they did not eliminate God.
There were several early though mostly unknown evolutionists, including Erasmus Darwin, Charles Darwin’s grandfather. Erasmus wrote about the concept in his book Zoonomia. French scientist-philosopher pierre de Maupertuis9 wrote extensively on mutation, and French naturalist Jean Baptiste Lamarck devised a theory he called “transformism.”10 But the publication in 1859 of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, called the “book that shook the world,” brought widespread acceptance to the theory of evolution.
Simply put, On the Origin of Species claims that, in a fight for survival of the fittest, the young of a species gradually develops adaptive variations through a process of natural selection. These variations are genetically passed on to the next generation, thus evolving the species. He also claimed that all related organisms come from common ancestors.11
The book sold out the first day it hit the stands.
But it did not resolve the issue of how the world actually began. Enter the Big Bang Theory. According to the U.S. government’s National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Big Bang is “the dominant scientific theory about the origin of the universe.” Says NASA, “The universe was created sometime between 10 billion and 20 billion years ago from a cosmic explosion that hurled matter in all directions.” NASA’s description, however, does add this disclaimer: “Although the Big Bang Theory is widely accepted, it probably will never be proved; consequentially, leaving a number of tough, unanswered questions.”12
Another explanation goes something like this:
Our universe is thought to have begun as an infinitesimally small, infinitely hot, infinitely dense, something—a singularity. Where did it come from? We don’t know. Why did it appear? We don’t know. After its initial appearance, it apparently inflated (the “Big Bang”), expanded and cooled, going from very, very small and very, very hot, to the size and temperature of our current universe. It continues to expand and cool to this day and we are inside of it.13
Today belief in evolution and the Big Bang permeate the educational system, and anyone who tries to change that fact is dragged into court. In October 2004 the Dover, Pennsylvania, school board voted 6–3 to include the teaching of “intelligent design” alongside Darwinism in its ninth grade biology curriculum. The decision, the first of its kind in the nation, caused a commotion in the small, rural school district located 20 miles south of the state capital of Harrisburg:
Critics call the change in the ninth-grade biology curriculum a veiled attempt to require public schoolchildren to learn creationism, a biblical-based view that credits the origin of species to God. Schools typically teach evolution, the theory that Earth is billions of years old and that life forms developed over millions of years.14
Two of the three board members who voted against the measure immediately resigned. They contended the 1987 U.S. Supreme Court ruling making it unconstitutional for Louisiana to teach creationism applies equally to pennsylvania.
Meanwhile in Atlanta, Georgia, a federal court ruled in January against Cobb County leaders who approved a sticker, placed on the inside cover of biology textbooks, that called evolution a theory, not a fact. The judge admitted the sticker made no reference to God or religion. Nevertheless, he wrote, “The sticker would appear to advance the religious viewpoint of the Christian fundamentalists and creationists who were vocal during the textbook adoption process regarding their belief that evolution is a theory, not a fact.”15
Evolution has become so deeply ingrained in public education that many Georgia residents feared the state was “making itself look like a bunch of rubes” for allowing anything to imply that the theory might, perhaps, be wrong.
Ken Ham believes the secular media have misinterpreted the November reelection of president George W. Bush to mean that more people in America believe in creation than evolution because they voted conservative. Creation/evolution battles are going on in more than 20 states, he said, and “many Americans have finally awakened to the fact that the secular humanists are taking over the culture.”16
So the battle for truth continues. On one side stand the evolutionists, like Richard Dawkins, who sneer at Genesis and view creationists as dolts who reject science and want to shove the world back into the dark ages. On the other side are the creationists, who believe Moses and Jesus: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1).
It is a battle between spiritual darkness and light. Unfortunately, many people cannot distinguish between the two: “The natural [unregenerate] man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor. 2:14).
So the fight is destined to rage on.
by. Steve Herzig & Lorna Simcox
- Ethology is “a branch of knowledge dealing with human character and with its formation and evolution.” Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th ed., s.v. “ethology.”
- Quoted in John Wilson, “Unintelligent Debate,” Christianity Today, 48, no. 9 (September 2004): 63.
- “Poll: Most Americans Don’t Believe Evolution,” November 23, 2004 [www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2004/11/22/222923.shtml].
- Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution reveals a Universe Without Design [www.simonyi.ox.ac.uk/dawkins/WorldOfDawkins-archive/Dawkins/Work/Books/blind.shtml].
- “Creationism vs. Sanity,” January 23, 2005, [http://scienceweek.com/editorials.htm].
- “About the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum” [www.answersingenesis.org/museum/about.asp].
- Andrew Kantor, “Good technology requires good science behind it,” USA Today, February 4, 2005 [www.usatoday.com/tech/columnist/andrewkantor/ 2005-02-04-kantor_x.htm].
- Desmond King-Hele, “Evolutionary Theory Before Charles Darwin,” in People Who Made History: Charles Darwin, Don Nardo, ed. (San Diego, CA: Greenhaven press, 2000), 34–35.
- Bentley Glass, “Maupertuis: The First Modern Evolutionist,” in People Who Made History: Charles Darwin, Don Nardo, ed. (San Diego, CA: Greenhaven press, 2000), 44.
- L. J. Jordanova, “Lamarck’s Theory of Transformism,” in People Who Made History: Charles Darwin, Don Nardo, ed.(San Diego, CA: Greenhaven press, 2000), 53.
- Funk & Wagnalls New Encyclopedia, s.v. “Darwin, Charles Robert.”
- “The Big Bang Theory” [http://liftoff.msfc.nasa.gov/academy/universe/b_bang.html].
- “Big Bang Theory: An Overview” [www.allaboutscience.org/big-bang-theory.htm].
- Martha Raffaele, The Associated Press, “School Board Oks Challenge to Evolution” [www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6470259].
- Ken Ham, Answers in Genesis newsletter (March 2005). 16 Ibid.