Thursday, April 8, 2010

Why Talk About Evolution

I am a creationist.

As a follower of Jesus Christ, I believe that God, the Father of our Lord, created all things through his Son.

I happen to think that the way he did it was through a long, slow process we know as evolution. I believe the universe has been evolving for something over 14 billion years and that in the beginning there was a big bang that humans don't understand very well.

Really, though, I don't care very much about how he did it. Whether life evolved and whether the universe is billions of years old matters very little to me.

What matters is that I know and follow Jesus Christ, the Word of God and co-creator with God.

So ...

Why Talk About Evolution?

When I was born again and my life—and, seemingly, the whole world—changed, I listened to the Christians around me, thinking that they'd all had the same real, profound experience with God that I had. (I now know most of them haven't.)

Thus, I became a young earth creationist.

Then, somewhere around 1987, I read a book put out by InterVarsity Press on evolution. I only read it because it was put out by IVP, a conservative Christian publisher I respected. (I believe they're affiliated with Campus Crusade for Christ, one of the most effective Christian organizations there's ever been, in my opinion.)

I can't seem to find the book to link it for you, but it was put out by 4 scientists who said, "We can't keep silent anymore."

They said they were fed up with the dishonesty practiced by Christians who argued against evolution. They just had to speak up.

At that point I became open to evolution, but I really didn't think about it much.

As a result over the next few years, being very much a Biblical literalist, I simply slipped back into an anti-evolution mode.

Then, in 1994, I watched a series of television shows on evolution put out by some creation museum. It was on for an hour each Saturday, and I saw three episodes. (I was in Knoxville, TN at the time.)

Right about the same time, I was doing a lot of discussing on the CompuServe religion forum (remember them?).

Three people showed up on the CompuServe forum and began arguing for evolution. They were not Christians; they were agnostics. I immediately rolled up my sleeves and took them on.

Why shouldn't I? The creationist museum had told me that evolution was all a hoax. They had no evidence. All I had to do was point out the fallacies of evolution that the TV show had shown me, and they would be silenced. What could they say when I pointed out their complete lack of substance?

I was really excited about one trump card that I had.

Dr. Robert Gentry had said on the TV program that Lucy, the Australopithecus afarensis "missing link," was a hoax being perpetrated on us by her discoverer, Dr. Donald Johanson.

Dr. Gentry explained that Lucy's knee was one of the major pieces of evidence that she walked upright. And, of course, walking upright is one of the major pieces of evidence that Lucy's species, A. afarensis, is a human ancestor.

Then, he dropped the bombshell. Apparently, Dr. Johanson found Lucy's knee joint over a mile away from the rest of the skeleton!

All Dr. Johanson had to establish that his knee joint belonged to Lucy was "anatomical similarity." Worse, Dr. Johanson didn't admit this until confronted by creationists in 1986, some 13 years after finding Lucy and the controversial knee joint.

What could evolutionists possibly do when confronted with such obvious dishonesty?

Slander and Liars for Jesus

They could expose it.

The evolutionists sent me to articles giving the real story. Far from concealing the fact that the knee joint was found a mile from Lucy's skeleton, Dr. Johanson had written a book on it in 1980.

He could prove in print that he had concealed nothing!

Worse, in 1974, Dr. Johanson had found what became known as the "first family," a set of A. afarensis skeletons all buried in the same place. Several knee joints were included in that discovery, thus establishing without doubt that Dr. Johanson was correct. Anatomical similarities had indeed accurately shown that the knee joint he found was an afarensis joint.

Yet, in 1994 a published scientist and Christian, Dr. Robert Gentry, was announcing on TV that Lucy was a hoax and that Dr. Donald Johanson was purposely perpetrating this hoax.

The evolutionists on CompuServe complained to me about such "liars for Jesus."

They explained that they thought Christians were primarily supposed to be honest.

But creationists were proving to them that Christianity has nothing to do with honesty.

Christianity Has Everything To Do with Honesty and Truth

Friends, we can't be liars for Jesus.

Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Remember?

He said the truth would set us free. Remember?

Why do I talk about evolution? It's not because I care a whit whether God took 14 billion years, 10 thousand years, 6 thousand years, or 3 seconds to create the world as we know it today.

It's because I care about the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Ignorance and dishonesty will never establish the Gospel.

Holiness, commitment, and obedience will establish the Gospel.

We need to pay a lot more attention to a literal interpretation of the Sermon on the Mount, where Jesus tells us to seek first the kingdom of God and forget about storing up treasures on earth, than to a literal interpretation of Genesis one and arguing that there were three literal 24-hour days without a sun, moon, or stars.

We need to pay a lot more attention to a literal interpretation of John 17, where Jesus tells us that our unity will prove he's sent by God, than to arguing that the irreconcilable accounts of creation in Genesis one and Genesis two are both literal.

We need to pay a lot more attention to a literal interpretation of Galatians 5:19-21, where Paul tells us that denominationalism and division will keep us out of the kingdom of God, than to arguing that Noah brought kangaroos from Australia and sauropods from the Jurassic onto the ark.

We also need to pay a lot more attention to the ten commandments, especially the one about not bearing false witness, than to finding any wild, unsubstantiated story we can use to defend God by being ignorant and dishonest.

That's why I talk about evolution.

I hope you understand. But if you don't, I'm going to talk about it, anyway.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to comment, and I'll even let links be posted, particularly on the subject of evolution from either side. No spam, and no pointless links. The comments are moderated.