Perils of Theistic Evolution1
Published: 6 December 2012 (GMT+10)
This is the pre-publication version which was subsequently revised to appear in Creation 37(3):44–47.
For many years, I have felt keenly both the privilege and the responsibility of speaking about the truth and authority of the Bible. Nowhere has the conflict of opinion been more intense than in discussion with theistic evolutionists (TEs)—those who insist that God used evolution2 to bring living things into being. According to Denis Alexander, we ‘creationists’ “bring the gospel into disrepute”, our teaching is “damaging to the spread of God’s kingdom”, we’re “divisive”, and “Christian campaigns against evolution represent a giant ‘red herring’ … ”3 On the last claim, we have found, quite to the contrary, that our ongoing Question Evolution campaign has gathered momentum and is certainly not being ignored.
Dangers of compromise
For a few years, until part way through university, I myself departed from the straightforward reading of Genesis and embraced theistic evolution (TE). I can testify that, humanly speaking, belief in evolution brought me to a crisis in my faith: I faced the stark choice that either the evolutionary view was wrong, or the Genesis record of Creation/Fall/Flood/Babel was wrong. If Genesis couldn’t be trusted as historically reliable, Christianity itself would fail to be a logically defensible faith in my eyes.
Thanks to God, my own story did not end in spiritual shipwreck—but I have never forgotten my wrestling about origins. I am now more convinced than ever of the real dangers in swallowing worldly philosophy. It is dangerous for Christians to allow the opinions of clever men and women to shape their understanding of the Word of God, if what they say contradicts its plain meaning. Allow me to share just some of the many reasons why I passionately believe that the Christian church must strongly resist the accommodation with evolution that is threatening more and more otherwise evangelical churches.
1. The Bible is made to bow the knee to secular thinking
Amongst TEs, evolution is declared to be an indisputable fact, even when this cuts across the ‘face-value’ reading of Scripture. As an example, Denis Alexander wrote “How do we understand the Fall in the light of evolution?”4 In other words, man’s thinking trumps Bible truth! TEs may protest against this charge of denying biblical authority, but I am convinced they are guilty of it in practice—as I once was. No, the Bible is perfect and unalterable (Psalm 119:89, Proverbs 30:5, 6). Truth is not negotiable, so biblical authority must not be made subservient to evolutionary interpretations. TE is far from being ideologically free,5 and whenever TE is embraced, the inevitable result is a tendency to deny central biblical teachings, even if this happens some time later (see here).
2. Scripture’s plain reading is forced into an evolutionary straitjacket
TE denies what is known as ‘the perspicuity of Scripture’.6 It changes the way we read the Bible and, among other things, undermines the historical accounts of Genesis 1–11, reducing them to myth, allegory, poetry or parable. In effect, the audacious claim is being made that nobody before Darwin could properly understand Genesis, while those who advocate the centuries-old view of biblical creation are criticised for being behind the times and divisive! The perspicuity of Scripture is sidelined whenever the Bible’s plain meaning is forced into an evolutionary straitjacket. For example, in his book, God and the biologist,7 Prof R J (Sam) Berry wrote, “If God is truly omnipotent, clearly he could have made Eve from one of Adam’s ribs, but that does not mean that he actually did so. Modern man has the same number of ribs as modern woman” (emphasis in original).
We can ignore the ridiculous insinuation that loss of a rib would somehow be passed on to Adam’s offspring, contrary to the basic reproductive biological knowledge.8 Moroever, the rib would have regrown! Berry’s rejoinder was a smokescreen, intended to hide from view his blatant disregard of Genesis 2:22: “Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman.” If this ‘does not mean that [God] actually did so,’ God is made out to be a liar and we have no hope of being certain of the meaning of any verse of Scripture.
3. The biblical Creator versus the ‘Evolver god’
Scripture is clear that God is perfect (Matthew 5:48), holy (Isaiah 6:3), omnipotent (Jeremiah 32:17), life (John 1:4), light (1 John 1:5), and love (1 John 4:16)—and that His attributes are “clearly seen” (Romans 1:20). But how are the power, knowledge and love of God clearly manifested in the TE scheme? For such a god would not appear to know how to create creatures quickly (and therefore has limited knowledge), or would appear unable to do so (and therefore has limited power). And, if his alleged creative process (evolution by natural selection) involved so much suffering and death over millions of years, his goodness (omnibenevolence) would be denied too (Genesis 1:31). In short, a consistent application of TE view robs Christ (the eternal Word of God, made flesh) of His rightful glory.
4. A disregard for the testimony of Christ and His Apostles
If TE is believed, Christ and the New Testament writers were in error (or deceitful) in their teaching about man’s antiquity from the dawn of time (Luke 1:70, 11:50, Mark 10:6, Acts 3:21, Romans 1:20); and wrong, too, about Earth’s creation from water (see 2 Peter 3:3–5), the Noahic Flood (consider 2 Peter 3:5–6), man’s distinction from animals (1 Corinthians 15:39), a literal Adam (e.g. 1 Corinthians 15:47–49), Eve’s creation from Adam (1 Timothy 2:13), the literal temptation of Eve by Satan (2 Corinthians 11:3), and much more.
5. Evolution dehumanises people who are in God’s image
Human beings were created in God’s image (Genesis 1:26, 27), albeit that this image is marred in fallen mankind. Acknowledging other mitigating factors, we see the dreadful legacy in societies that have suffered decades of evolutionary indoctrination (and the evils of the not-too-distant past too). Lust for power, greed, selfishness, indifference, dishonesty, the suppression of the defenceless and weak—all are a logical outworking of the application of a ‘survival of the fittest’ mentality. Human beings in the evolutionary scheme are reduced to the status of mere animals, at the mercy of their various lusts and appetites. Yet leading TEs downplay or altogether ignore these points in their teachings.
Consider the following comment, made by Prof Sam Berry in an interview in 1996,9 “ … I am an ape. I am an ape made in the image of God, and I’ve got to bring these together. This doesn’t mean watering down either in any way. … So many Christians have a half-baked faith; for them it’s faith or science. But it isn’t that, it’s faith and science.” This runs directly counter to the teaching of the Apostle Paul (see 1 Corinthians 15:39 and 15:45) and to much else in the Bible besides; see also Psalm 8:4, 5 for instance. As a consistent TE, Berry so elevates human reason that he seems oblivious that his words border on blasphemy. In truth, TE doctrine is neither orthodox scripturally nor consistent scientifically (hence the ire that TEs incur from atheists for their fence-sitting and half-belief in the Bible ).
Furthermore, we know that man’s sinful heart results from the real historical Fall of Adam and Eve, but deceit, envy, theft, lust and murder are consistent ‘fruits’ within an evolutionary word-view. TEs are forced to marginalise the relevance of such evil fruit for the very evolutionary process they’re forcing onto the Bible. Consider these astute observations by C. Leopold Clarke, writing in the early twentieth century:10 “Evolution, indeed, applied to the moral and social life of man represents the quintessence of selfishness and indifference, and these fruits it has brought forth wherever it has been adopted or applied … Is it Evolution that is at work in the arena of every-day life, in which the lust for power and possession … grinds down relentlessly the weak and defenceless? … If so, is anything more needed to account for man’s growing disbelief in God or the wrecking of Human faith in divine goodness?”
6. TE undermines the Gospel of Jesus Christ
The doctrine of TE is an obstruction to those who are seeking God. Original perfection, the Fall, sin, death and suffering—all have to be redefined and twisted to mean something different from what a natural reading of the text requires. For instance, to accept human evolution is to reject sin in its truest biblical sense—the very opposite of what the Holy Spirit does, highlighting to people the utter sinfulness of sin (Romans 7:13, 7:18, 19). Such a restating of these key biblical doctrines, by professing evangelicals today, is occurring to the extent that Scripture no longer really means what it plainly says.
For example, Genesis 1:29–30 unambiguously teaches the absence of carnivory in the pre-fallen world:
“And God said, ‘See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food’; and it was so.” Denis Alexander, however, writes,11 “It is unlikely that this text refers to vegetarianism, more likely that it is highlighting the theological point that animal sacrifice was necessary only for those who had sinned.” On the contrary, it is not only likely, but certain, that the intent of the author (who is ultimately the Holy Spirit) was to convey both human and animal vegetarianism, for that is what is explicitly stated (see also this article). There is not the slightest hint in Genesis 1 that atonement through the sacrifice of animals is here in view—the moral and physical perfection of this originally pristine world is underscored by God’s own pronouncement of “everything He had made [as] ‘very good’ ” (Genesis 1:31).
Furthermore, with the denial of Adam as the first man by many TEs, they often go so far as to deny that our sinful nature and physical (not merely spiritual) death was inherited from “the first man Adam”. The Apostle Paul’s connection between Genesis 3 and the Gospel (in Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15) is seriously weakened by TEs, to such an extent that the basis for God’s abundant grace and His gift of righteousness through Jesus is thoroughly undermined. Under the TE scheme, then, there is a very real danger that Jesus’ glorious redemptive work is liable to be mythologised.
In fact, if TE is followed to its logical conclusion, our eschatology12 must also alter. If the Edenic state actually included pain, suffering and death of animals and sub-humans, why is death described as an “enemy to be destroyed” (1 Corinthians 15:26). And if carnivory, suffering and death were, in fact, an inherent part of life for millions of years before Adam, why do we not read that the restoration of this world will include more of the same; that is, when the Curse is removed, as Revelation 22:3 teaches? Rather, we read that the future eternal state will be characterised by the absence of death, sorrow, crying and pain (Revelation 21:4)? Indeed, the Christian’s confidence in “an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away” (1 Peter 1:4) would seem a vain one, if TE doctrine is consistently applied.
Further considerations of TE
As with all theological novelties concerning Genesis in the minds of men, TE doctrine requires an acceptance of the fact that the greatest Christian minds for some 18 centuries somehow failed to properly grasp the meaning of this vital and most foundational book of Scripture! Supposedly it waited for a deist who had increasingly moved away from God and belief in His Word, to show us how God really created the world! And all this, in spite of the fact that Darwin (the main architect of evolution) took great pains to explicitly remove God from any involvement in the evolutionary process.
A denial of Darwin
No honest reader of Darwin’s published books—and especially his private correspondence and autobiography—could be in any doubt whatsoever on this point: he was manifestly opposed to theistic evolution. By way of just one example, in a letter to his American friend, Asa Gray, Darwin wrote: “I had no intention to write atheistically. But I own that I cannot see, as plainly as others do, & as I should wish to do, evidence of design & beneficence on all sides of us. There seems to me too much misery in the world. I cannot persuade myself that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have designedly created the Ichneumonidae with the express intention of their feeding within the living bodies of caterpillars … I see no necessity in the belief that the eye was expressly designed” (my emphasis).13 He not merely denied design, but also any role for God in the evolutionary process he was advocating—a position that is logically sound.
A subversion of evangelical orthodoxy
Some of today’s TEs loudly profess their evangelical orthodoxy, while simultaneously subverting or denying plain biblical teachings. It is therefore incumbent on Christians to test their claims against Scripture—to “test everything; [and] hold fast what is good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21)—for, as C. Leopold Clarke observed, “Divine authority suffers always less at the hands of those who stand apart from it [e.g. atheists], than of those who profess to revere, and yet belittle it [theistic evolutionists]. No greater despite can be done to anything, than that which purports to be done by its friends.”14 Admittedly, this is a strong charge but I believe it is warranted. Even as true Christians, we may actually damage the very Gospel we profess to hold dear—hence the sobering warning about God’s stricter judgment for Christians who teach in the Church (James 3:1). I would encourage you to re-read the damning accusations against creationists cited in the first paragraph of this article, and consider these in the light of the problems of TE we have highlighted; the words of Isaiah 5:20 seem tragically appropriate: “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness … ”
Conclusion: There’s safety in faithful obedience
Of course, there are also strong scientific reasons for rejecting evolution, whether of the atheistic or theistic variety—CMI’s website, books, DVDs and Creation magazine deal comprehensively with these. The onus on all those who really care about Truth and scientific integrity is to continue applying 1 Thessalonians 5:21—to do so will mean to continue to ‘Question Evolution’, and to promote those pertinent and telling aspects of the debate which evolutionists (both secularists and TEs) seem to studiously ignore or set aside.
The mental gymnastics required by those who entertain theistic evolution can be avoided. To embrace TE is to tolerate and condone both bad science and bad theology, for TE is ultimately an oxymoron15—being inimical to the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. I have pulled no punches in this essay but my sincere prayer is that some of my fellow Christians, who are reading this as TEs, will be given serious pause for thought. Let us remember, “Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble” (Psalm 119:165).
References and notes
- This is an expanded version of an article that first appeared in the CMI-UK/Europe Prayer News, July 2012. Return to text.
- Evolution used here and in this article means: descent with modification, of all organisms (including humans) from a common ancestor, over millions of years. Return to text.
- Creation or Evolution? Do we have to choose? Monarch Books, 2008, pp. 353–354. Return to text.
- See creation.com/viva-la-evolution. Return to text.
- See chapters 9–11 of Statham, D., Evolution: Good Science? Exposing the Ideological Nature of Darwin’s Theory, Day One, 2009. Return to text.
- The principle that God’s Word is clear and lucid and plainly understood. Return to text.
- Berry, R. J., God and the biologist, Apollos, Leicester, 1996, p. 50. Return to text.
- Such a basic error is inexcusable considering that Berry is a leading geneticist. Return to text.
- This appeared on BBC Radio and subsequently in the book, Stannard, R., Science and wonders: Conversations about science and belief, Faber & Faber, London, 1996, p. 46. Return to text.
- Clarke, C. L., Evolution and the Breakup of Christendom, Marshall, Morgan & Scott Ltd, London, 1930, p. 130. Return to text.
- Ref. 3, p. 270. Return to text.
- The branch of theology dealing with the doctrines of the ‘last things’ regarding mankind’s ultimate destiny; including death, judgement, heaven and hell. Return to text.
- Letter to Asa Gray, 22 May, 1860. In: Burkhardt, F., Evans, S. & Pearn, A. (eds), Evolution: Selected letters of Charles Darwin, 1860–1870, Cambridge University Press, 2008, p. 11. Return to text.
- Ref. 10, p. 250. Return to text.
- An oxymoron is a contradiction in terms; for example, a ‘deafening silence’ or a ‘married bachelor’. Return to text.
Thanks for your excellent article. Only point I would additionally make is that Theistic Evolution is not merely 'compromise', but is the great Heresy/Apostasy of the day. Just as the early Church had to battle against Heresy that denied fundamental doctrines such as the Deity of Christ and the Trinity, the Church of today needs to battle TE that denies God as Creator! That's not to say that God isn't gracious and is patient with those who hold to TE (I was once there myself); afterall he wants everyone to come to a knowledge of the Truth. Nonetheless, I believe strongly that we need to call it as it is - TE is a Heresy/Apostasy. God bless. SW.
Being in the sciences I was indoctrinated into evolution from primary school on. My ex-son-in law is an avid evolutionist - brainwashing my grandkids - without even looking into intelligent design let alone the Bible. I knew evolution was at odds with my faith and I prayed to God to show me if there were evidences scientifically for creation. Up to that time I did not know of any - and over the years God has more than answered my prayers. If you really trust the Lord, He will give you knowledge.
Folks, now more than ever we need to remember that our battle is not with flesh and blood but against the 'spiritual forces of evil' (Eph.6). When we understand this as well as the unscientific, philosophical and anti-Christian basis upon which evolution theory was built then we can confront this issue more effectively. Clearly we are not going to win the battle through public education or legislation (even to the minimalist extent of simply teaching the myriad problems with evolution theory). Therefore we must be bolder and more assertive in teaching creationism in our homes and churches. If home schooling is not an option then Sunday school curriculums must incorporate creationism, to include the substantial scientific evidence supporting it as well as the anti-Christian underpinnings of evolutionary indoctrination. At least when kids get evolutionary teaching in school, they should be able to discern for themselves the illogic and irrationality of evolution, theistic or otherwise. They should also understand why this theory is still being pushed so hard despite the complete lack of empirical evidence (and they should know what empirical evidence means in terms of real science). Kids are smart, they should be able to see the logical inconsistencies of evolution for themselves pretty quick. We can also do this in small groups or special classes at church, and by checking your church library for creation/evolution materials (which should be up to date).
Indeed, the spiritual nature of this battle for hearts and minds should never be forgotten by Christians.
Re: Idolatry in religion e.g. Theistic Evolution,
[The following is] from: What Luther Says, by Ewald M. Plass, p. 680:
"This is in reality, establishing idolatry: undertaking to worship God without God's bidding, on the basis of one's own devout inclination. For he will not have us direct him how he is to be served. he intends to teach US in this matter. His word is to be there. This is to give us light and guidance. Without his word all is idolatry and lies, however devout it may seem and however beautiful it may appear... Rather let each see to it that he is sure that his worship of God is instituted by God's word and not devised by his own devout inclination or good intention.
For whoever is given to a worship of God that lacks the approval of God should know that he is not serving the true God but an idol of his own invention, that is, his own notion and false idea and thereby the devil himself, and that the words of all the prophets are against him."
The main battle in the Holy War, that was instigated and is being waged by God for the purpose of rescuing us from sin and Satan's hold over us, is centered on the First Commandment. It is this commandment (Exodus 20:3, which in essence is the same in meaning as Matt. 22:37) versus idolatry.
The last point:
"Conclusion: There’s safety in faithful obedience"
"Conclusion: The actual TRUTH is irrelevant."
The six numbered subtitles of this article give copious biblical references to show some of the major perils the theistic evolutionary position. Therefore, that conclusion must be read in the context of the article! But, to spell it out, there is safety in faithful obedience to the truth and authority of the Word of God, the Bible. Truth is not negotiable. Your 'translated' conclusion is diametrically opposite to the entire tenor and thrust of the article and shows why it is inadvisable to rip a statement out of its context.
Mark D. said "The real truth is that as man finds out more about the world he lives in he divorces the ridiculous proposition that god made everything." In that case where does this leave such brilliant scientists like Francis Crick and Carl Sagan proposing that aliens created life on Earth or the eminent British astrophysicist Sir Martin Rees claiming the we may all be a giant computer simulation program, presumably being run by some player?
TEs are the same breed of people who will believe ‘the lie’ in the end. If they cannot hold onto faith now, but give way so easily to the little god of science, how will they possibly endure when the man of sin is revealed in all manner of lying wonders? To hardened hearts which refuse to believe the truth, even God will answer them according to the idols in their hearts. Remember the lying spirits God forced to fill the mouths of the false prophets? How can this be? God sends lying spirits?! Yes, but only to those who disbelieve and who refuse to obey the truth and who delight in wickedness. Many do not know this about God. Theistic evolutionists may very well be the generation of (dis)believers who will beget the final generation, who by the way, will also profess Christianity.
9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness. 2 Thess. 2:9-14 (NIV)
(Publish at your own risk)
While CMI firmly believes the theory of evolution to be a lie, we do accept that one can be genuinely saved but, sadly, be deceived in this matter of origins and biblical authority. Nevertheless, the doctrine of theistic evolution, with its massive contradictions to what Scripture teaches in such Gospel-foundational areas as the origin and meaning of sin and death, serves to weaken and destroy the very foundations of our faith, so even believers may be used as tools of Satan in this area. But that is far from saying that all theistic evolutionists professing to be Christians are saved. Jesus did teach (in the parables of the tares and wheat) that there would always be the unsaved in the church. When one experiences those who, fully aware of the doctrinal implications for the rest of Scripture, strongly oppose biblical creation and passionately urge others to embrace theistic evolution instead, it’s hard not to be reminded of the fierce wolves among the flock in Acts 20:29, even when they appear outwardly as gentle sheep in other respects (see Matthew 7:15).
Articles such as this help clarify the REAL issues, and how much is at stake.
Having always been taught it in school as fact, it was a shock, as a young Christian student, to be challenged about Evolution by a much older and scientifically qualified Christian. But that challenge opened my eyes to examine this “theory” scientifically and find it very much wanting.
However, until finding Creationist sites such as yours, I still had little understanding of just how pernicious and potentially faith-destroying theistic evolution can be.
2 Chronicles 19:2-3 is very relevant:
‘But Jehu the son of Hanani the seer went out to meet him, and said to King Jehoshaphat, "Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the LORD? Because of this, wrath has gone out against you from the LORD.
Nevertheless some good is found in you, for you destroyed the Asherahs out of the land, and have set your heart to seek God." ’
King Jehoshaphat was a good man, a man of God. Yet he had a fatal tendency to compromise.
To all “Jehoshaphats” who “make a league” with evolutionism, God would say: "Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the LORD?”
Right on! I came to the same conclusions as the author; over 40 years ago; either the Bible was wrong or Evolutionary doctrine was wrong. I fearfully, as a new Christian, tested my faith by finding out everything I could about the doctrine of evolution. Jesus said: "my disciples will know the truth and the truth will set them free." I soon realized that evolutionary doctrine is based on unproveables, assumptions, and wild guesses. The actual evidences consistently and constantly proved that the earth is about 6000 years old as the Bible testifies through the genealogies given (Gen. 5 & 11). Man lived [contemporary] with fantastic creatures (Job 40 & 41) in Job's day, described as what we would call "dinosaurs". Amen & amen!
The genealogies revealed in scripture are as follows, skipping some- Adam, Seth... Noah, Shem... Abraham, Isaac, Jacob... David’s descendants splitting into two lineages- Solomon to Joseph & Nathan to Mary. I would love to know if Theistic Evolutionists think Jesus was real or a metaphor, the same goes for Adam. If Jesus is real and Adam a Metaphor, then where does real suddenly become unreal & do all TE’s agree & why. If Adam was the first human with a soul, after evolving from apes, they must treat God like they’re the grownups... reinterpreting what God really meant to say.
Although a belief in biblical creation may not be necessary for salvation, I believe TE may inadvertently be a salvation issue. The bible teaches about the kind of faith required to enter the kingdom of heaven. Luke 18:17 & Mathew 18:3
These verses warn of the consequences of not having a ‘childlike’ faith. Jesus refers to creation week and Noah’s global flood as literal events. Wouldn’t that mean anyone continuing to harbour a belief contrary to Jesus teachings, is acting as if Jesus does not require a childlike faith; they are displaying more faith in man’s fallible ideas. In my opinion, theistic evolutionists are taking a huge risk. Matthew 7:22 & 23 warns us that some who claim they profess in Christ’s name will be rejected by him.
Professing in Christ’s name isn’t enough. Compromise due to lack of childlike faith is a danger revealed so we might avoid disqualifying ourselves from salvation, which is only gained through Christ, but there seem to be fake caricatures of Christ popping up everywhere to deceive us. Let’s hope we put our trust in the genuine Christ, the one revealed in scripture. Funny how there doesn’t seem to be that many false caricatures of Mohammad, Buddha etc.
Thank you for your article 'Perils of Theistic Evolution' and for a general outline in sharing your personal struggles with this issue. And it is with this particular aspect in mind I write.
Like every child in their formative years, information is taken on trust from their elders and teachers in the things relating to life. And it is often a lot later in life when the consequences of what has been taught to these young one's shows itself, by which time the the hardened heart and mind is closed to anything that contradicts what it has learned. The consequences of evolutionary teaching and indoctrination (through many mediums) is starting to show itself in a more prominent way in today's England. It is not a fact to be missed that the parallel event to the 1859 revival [across the UK] was the publication of Darwin's 'Origin of Species.' This has happened all through history, A Great work of God closely counteracted or followed by a deception or counterfeit of the devil, all the way from the from the creation of man, the nation of Israel, the prophetical witness, the arrival, finished work and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour, the forming of the church through to the current day. I have no reason to think (from scripture) that this will be any other way until He comes again.
My concern is the way in which our government is, influenced and vehemently bombarded, by secularist and humanist society's and are specifically targeting our young children through the education system. In June of this year compulsory Evolutionary teaching was incorporated in the the draft curriculum for primary schools. Yesterday a report was issued (see BBC article) that funding for free schools will be withheld if they don't teach evolution as a 'credible theory'(?) Psalm 2 & Exodus 32:26
As your article asserts, the merit remains in declaring Scripture as God has rendered it to us.
It is not us who draw people to Jesus Christ, it is the Father. He uses us to convey a message and will bless that message which is true to his Word.
We should never buckle to the pressure to amend the message to make it more palatable to the world's taste. That is idolatry!
Speak the truth in humility and with love. This is the will of our Lord.
Theistic evolution also puts a material-based principle between God and his creation. It makes some impersonal principle the mediator between God and man, and makes humanity the result, not of God speaking in love for fellowship, but of some abstract 'machine' making us; our 'father' ceased to be God, and he becomes the one who has pushed us away. Not only does this make the recourse to his being creator hollow, but it makes God's love for us pale, and causes the the basis for the gospel to leak away.
Why all this work? Isn't it simple? The Bible says so and there is no other argument. Of cause everybody can fiddle his own version but then leave the Bible alone, it doesn't need your explanation. The Bible is the truth and who doesn't accept the truth must believe in a lie, simple, isn't it?
Would that it were that simple! If all Christians accepted the Bible with child-like faith and were never prone to unbelief in regard to God's Word to mankind, apologetics organisations like CMI would, indeed, be unnecessary. However, we human beings are fallen (see Genesis 3), so we are subject to ungodly influences from the world, our own flesh (sinful nature) and the devil. All people are sinners (Rom. 3:10-12, 23) and the Enemy of their souls lies to them (see John 5:44) and works hard to blind them (see 2 Cor. 4:4). Yes, people should accept what the Bible teaches, but the simple fact is, many struggle to do so, especially on this issue of origins, so we believe the work in writing articles of this sort is important.
Let us all hope that ministries like CMI never compromise on the word of God.
The problem is that theistic evolutionists want to look scientifically literate in the eyes of men, that is why they cut, paste and at times reject what scripture plainly teaches.
The bible has answers. It tells us about our origin, our destination, and it shows us the proper route to take. So when theistic evolutionists start denying the whole foundation of scripture, it leads to a distorted understanding of the "good news" message.
Keep up the good fight CMI!
A great article! Amen!
A strong parallelism exists between theistic evolution (TE) and Aaron’s building of the golden calf 'in combination with' an altar and feast to YHWH (Exodus 32:4-5). The altar to YHWH was “before it [the golden calf]”; i.e. to the congregation, the golden calf was in line of sight of the altar and thus was clearly to them part of the worship ‘package’.
Aaron gives every indication of blindly trusting the intelligentsia of Egypt—all of whom insisted on the existence of multiple gods. Aaron responds to this cosmology/reality thought-package by uncritically accepting it, modifying it only by 'expanding' it to include YHWH within it. Exactly the same dynamic exists within TE.
It is possible that Aaron’s placing of the YHWH-altar in front of the golden calf signaled an attempt on his part to make YHWH the preeminent god among multiple gods. If so, this good intention did not mitigate God’s anger against him for building the golden calf. (And [likewise] with the good intentions of TEs, …)
Compromise, however well-intentioned it may be on occasions, is still compromise, hence the 'perils' outlined in this article. Indeed, compromise within the TE scheme, and in Aaron's case as you point out (Ex. 32), involves capitulation or surrender of ideals and even one's principles. While the motive may be to appease others, the risks are high and the result is invariably that we end up with a god of our own making (aka idolatry).
At least the TE's acknowledge the fact they cannot force back the tsunami of scientific evidence, and that science is putting the notion of God back in its box. We do not need a celestial 'north korea' watching our every move to tell us a make believe god we cant see, touch, hear or interact with in ANY way made the stuff we can see, touch, hear and interact with.
The Bible is truth? The real truth is that as man finds out more about the world he lives in he divorces the ridiculous proposition that god made everything. He ceases to attribute the wonder he experiences to jesus, muhamed, Zeus or anyone of the other thousands of man made deities manufactured for one purpose or another over the history of mankind.
I'm not against religion, you creationists need to have a bit of intellectual integrity and just say that your god is just your belief, and you have faith that he made the world and out of all the other gods you believe this one because "it suits my need to believe there is a god." You confuse youngsters wanting to explore science with this hocus pocus psuedo science.
I'm grateful there are those that work to keep the type of scientific mis-information you espouse out of science classrooms.
This article dealt specifically with key theological ramifications of a theistic evolutionary position. Yet, the website creation.com is jam-packed with articles that comprehensively deal with multiple tsunami waves of scientific objections to molecules-to-man evolution. And lest I be accused of responding to an 'elephant hurling' comment with one of my own, I would simply point readers to CMI's 15 Questions for Evolutionists (part of our Question Evolution campaign) and the associated linked articles there; those scientific questions still represent a stark challenge to those who are serious about engaging with the facts.
Regarding intellectual integrity, if you had read what we actually write on this website, you would see that we make no bones about our faith in God and in the Bible as His revelation to human beings. We maintain, however, that Christianity is a reasonable faith (and many articles demonstrate this). In contrast, to believe that the universe somehow made itself and that mindless, goal-less, accidents eventually converted simple gases like hydrogen into today's variety of complex living organisms (contrary to the known laws of chemistry and to observational genetics and biology) is wishful thinking in the extreme.
And those who spread mis-information about what creationists actually believe and teach, in order to stifle educational freedom, are hardly paragons of intellectual integrity. CMI continues to believe that evolution should be taught in science classrooms, but children and young people are certainly being mis-informed if evolution is not taught honestly, i.e. warts and all!
Great piece. Jesus told us to judge the tree by its fruit, and in my limited experience Theistic Evolutionists don't produce the kind of fruit that inspires me to believe their words. Again, Jesus said "If you don't believe me when I tell you of earthly things, how will you believe when I tell you about Heavenly things?"
Nicodemus didn't even get off first base, because he didn't accept Jesus' words about things we can see.