Evolution Vs. Creationism
The idea that evolution (macro evolution) is anti-God or anti Christian is a falsity too often purported by the creationist movement Evolution is soundly grounded by science and is accepted by many mainstream Christian faiths most notably the largest and oldest Christian denomination the Roman Catholic ChurchThe idea that evolution (macro evolution) is anti-God or anti Christian is a falsity too often purported by the creationist movement. Evolution is soundly grounded by science and is accepted by many mainstream Christian faiths most notably the largest and oldest Christian denomination the Roman Catholic Church. Charles Darwin himself attributes the evolutionary process to a creator at the end of his book The Origin of the Species ?There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one?.(Darwin 1872 p. 459)
Evolution is easily observable and simply proven in three basic premises as shown in the article The Short Proof of Evolution by Ian Johnston. The first point the article gives is the fact that every creature must have had a living parent at some point in its existence. The second point is that not all living creatures are alike and in fact many are completely different (for example vertebrates vs. invertebrates). The third point substantiated by the fossil record is that ?simple animals and plants existed on earth far before complex ones?. The article ties it all together stating ?If all living creatures must have a living parent, if living creatures are different, and if simpler forms were around before complex forms, then the more complex forms must have come from the simpler forms.? (The Short Proof of Evolution by Ian Johnston)
Creationism takes a literal interpretation of Genesis and tries to make science fit. The bible is not a scientific document, it is religious text written by human authors who are subject to making scientific mistakes. The basic premise of Genesis 1 is true; God is the creator; but God is just as capable of creating through the evolutionary process as science exhibits as through the story of creation in six days as Genesis tells us and science contradicts. What we know of science contradicts the literal interpretation of Genesis but does not contradict the idea that there is a creator. The bible was never meant to be scientific or explain things in scientific terms. It is divine interpretation and no human can ever come close to interpreting the true nature of God. As Father George V. Coyne the director of the Vatican Observatory stated ?science and religion are totally separate pursuits?. (Intelligent Design Belittles God by Mark Lombard)
Today Copernicus and his solar system are accepted by all educated people. When he first released his ideas he came across similar objections as Darwin did. His ideas contradicted literal Old Testament scripture. For hundreds of years afterward both Protestant and Catholic leaders condemned him citing biblical scripture that the sun and moon revolve around the earth. The book of Joshua 10:12-14 states ?On the day the Lord gave the Amorites over to Israel, Joshua said to the Lord in the presence of Israel: ?O sun, stand still over Gibeon, O moon, over the Valley of Aijolon.? So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies. The sun stopped in the middle of sky and delayed going down about a full day.? (Joshua 10:12-14, New International Version) Furthermore scripture if taken literally implies that the earth is flat, not round ?After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth? (Revelation 7:1, New International Version). Not all scripture is intended to be taking literally and surely should not be taken as a basis of scientific knowledge. I found it interesting while reading Gerald Schroeder?s book The Science of God that ?the Talmud stated explicitly that the opening chapter of Genesis, all thirty-one verses is presented in a manner that conceals information.? (Schroeder 1997 p.10) (Babylonian Talmud Hagigah 11b, 12a, 500 A.D.)
Religion and science are not always and do not have to be at odds with each other over the Creation vs. Evolution debate. I believe that there is conclusive evidence for evolution and that the creation story in Genesis is not meant to be taken as a literal scientific sequence of events, but as a way to articulate the core idea that God is the creator. Eventually as science continues to fill the holes in Darwin?s theory with solutions (for example genetics) the theory of evolution will become as widely accepted as Copernicus?s theory of a sun centered solar system.
Darwin, C. (1872). The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection or
the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life(6th ed.).
New York: Mentor.
Schroeder G.L. (1997). The Science of God. New York: Free Press.
Johnston, I. (2005). The Short Proof of Evolution. Retrieved July 17,
2007 from Malaspina University-College Web site:
Lombard, M. (2006, January 30). Intelligent Design belittles God, Vatican
Director Says. Catholic Online. Retrieved July 17, 2007, from
John Schlismann has an interest in religous studies and how they relate to modern day science. For more information on the Evolution vs. Creation debate check out http://www.icr.org/ for the Creationism point of view and http://evolution.berkeley.edu/ for an evolutionary point of view.