Could God Have Used Evolution?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Revmitchell, Sep 15, 2008.

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  1. Revmitchell

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    “Why couldn’t God have just used evolution as his means of creating the world? Why do many Christians consider it a threat to their faith? What’s the big deal?” This is one of the most commonly asked questions about the origins debate, especially from young people. Many people wonder why Christians don’t simply accept Darwin’s theory as the means through which God created and then get on with it.



    This is a question I have wrestled with quite profoundly. I have asked many theologians, scientists, and philosophers the question, Is Darwinian evolution compatible with Christianity? After much thought and research, the conclusion I have come up with is that they are not compatible. To accept Darwinian evolution would be a grave mistake. Let me explain.



    Christianity and Darwinian Evolution: An Oxymoron!



    The reason the two cannot be wedded together is actually rather simple: Darwinian evolution (as you may recall from 9th grade Biology class) is a blind, undirected, purposelessness process. As Richard Dawkins regularly points out, evolution is a chance process that has no end-goal in mind. On the other hand, when we design something it’s no longer blind and it’s no longer undirected—it’s purposeful. Thus, to say God used evolution is an oxymoron (designed-chance) like “Christian-atheist,” “jumbo-shrimp,” or “Microsoft Works.”...

    More Here
     
  2. Crabtownboy

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    But thiestic evolution is not blind and not directed. Thiestic evolution is evolution directed by God. God could have and can create in any way he wants. Why? Because in this regard he is not limited.
     
  3. Tom Butler

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    The problem with theistic evolution is that the Scriptures don't give us wiggle room. The language describing the creation of Adam and Eve is pretty specific. They do not appear to have evolved. They and the animals, fish, birds, etc., which God created all existed at the same time.

    While we might try to embrace both evolution and creation, I suspect a great many evolutionists will tell you frankly that they embrace evolution because the idea of God is anathema to them. To admit that God might have had a hand in their creation would be to acknowledge that God has a claim on them and that they owe God something. It requires believing in the existence of God.

    Further, embracing evolution requires a huge leap of faith, maybe larger than believing in creation.
     
  4. ReformedBaptist

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    Evolutionary theory and Scripture are not compatiable.
     
  5. Crabtownboy

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    If you look closely at the first creation story in Gen. 1 you see that the order of creation does not conflict with theistic evolution. From the simple to the complex as far as living creatures is concerned, i.e.

    1st, living creatures in the sea
    2nd, living creatures on land
    3rd, mankind

    Now I am not sure where the light came from for day and night on the first day as the sun and moon was not created until the 4th day. That might be a good topic for another thread.

    There is a big problem when we conside the 2nd creation story in Genesis as the order of creation is reversed ... man first and others later. That might also be a good topic for another thread.

    I am sure you are right on this one for some people. There are others, who are Christian, who accept evolution and say there is no conflict as Genesis was not written as scientific truth. Rather it is theological truth, God did it and that is what is important ... does not matter how. I expect there are some who hold a position somewhere between the two poles on this topic.

    I do not see it that way. But we can respectfully agree to disagree on this one.
     
  6. Revmitchell

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    This is a non-response. It fails to address any real point. Did animals evolve or were they created and exist all at once? What does scripture say? I am sure this is difficult for you to answer when you believe the Bible is just a book of words.How would your personal experience (since this is your final authority on matters of faith and practice) help you to understand this issue?
     
  7. Crabtownboy

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    Depends on what type of evolution you are talking about. We know there have been changes in animals ... size and shape ... for instance. We know that animals existed that no longer exist. This is a form of evolution. We know that people have changed in size. This is a form of evolution. Was there only one race at creation or was there three ... or more? If there was only one and now there is more than one, that also is a form of evolution. If there was more then one then we have to wonder why?

    Whether they evolved or were all created at once simply does not matter. What matters is that God did it!

    By the way Rev. I have decided that whey you post inane comments within a post, or in a post of one sentence as you so often do that I will not respond to them. It is one of your tactics to derail threads. So, either post meaningful comments or expect no reply. [gently said]
     
    #7 Crabtownboy, Sep 15, 2008
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  8. Revmitchell

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    You are welcome to post or not post whether you like my comments or not. I am not effected by that either way. As far as my post being "inane" I am not sure you understand the meaning of that word. How you see scripture will have a meaningful and substantive effect on your answer to this question.

    The type of evolution we are talking about is made clear in the op. Micro-evolution is not on the table in this thread and is obviously irrelevant to this discussion. As far as your accusation of derailing threads...well you cannot back that up.
     
    #8 Revmitchell, Sep 15, 2008
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  9. ReformedBaptist

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    THis statement here represents the theological bankruptcy in modern evangelical and baptist churches. What matters, my friend, is what God said He did over and above what man thinks. Would you like to see from Scripture why evolutionary theory is not compatible with Scripture?

    RB
     
  10. Revmitchell

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    What is shows is an inability to defend a position scripturally. Which is a result of a weak view of scripture.
     
  11. lbaker

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    I may be mistaken on this but I think Darwin left the idea of whether a Creator got the evolutionary ball rolling or not as an open question. So I'm not sure that the term Darwinian Evolution necessarily demands an atheistic outlook, although Dawkins, etc. certainly give that impression.

    If we think God and Science (evolution) conflict then we are either not interpreting scripture right or science right. Or we may be misunderstanding both.

    BTW there are a lot of christians who don't rule out some kind of theistic evolution or progressive creation.
     
  12. ReformedBaptist

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    Hey my friend,

    I am responding to this statement of yours because it accurately represents a typcial misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. One ministry has coined the term "molecules-to-man" evolution or "goo-to-you" evolution, or what some call macro-evolution. What your describing above is not this type of evolution. Some have called what your describing "micro-evolution" but I prefer to call it variation within the specie, or kind. The 'goo-to-you' evolution has never been observed in nature or a labratory, nor does there exist any fossil evidence for it.

    Variation within the kinds is observed and can be repeated in a labratory. It never involves the gaining of DNA information, but the copying or loss of it. In order to have goo-to-you evolution one must have new information.

    What is actually observed is in-line with Scripture, that each kind reproduces after its own kind. In other words, dogs make dogs, horses make horses, et. It has never been observed nor does any evidence exist which shows a dog has produced a non-dog, et.

    But this is speaking of the science of the subject. THe real issue here is authority. Are you going to interpret the evidence by human reasoning through the scientific method which is fallible, or will you interpret the evidence through the infallibile Word of God?

    RB
     
  13. ReformedBaptist

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    Popular opinion never is the ground of our beliefs. I think you would agree, Scripture is. That is, if you take the Bible to be the very Word of God, inerrant and infallible. I think you do.

    Darwinian Evolution necessarily tends toward atheism. It is a philosophy of naturalism/materialism which overtly and purposefully excludes supernatural explainations. This is by definition hostile to special creation. It also must adopt the philosophy of uniformitarianism which Scripture specifically refutes.

    Therefore, Darwinian Evolution is incompatible with biblical teaching.

    RB
     
  14. lbaker

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    I don't see the argument as science vs. the Bible but more like interpretation of science vs. interpretation of the Bible. I agree that God would not give us incorrect information in His Word but I also don't think He would give us incorrect information in His creation either. So while I might not agree with your understanding of Genesis, it would be your understanding I question, not God's ability to communicate. On the other hand if I disagree with someone on evolution, it's not the evidence I dispute but their interpretation of the evidence.
     
  15. Crabtownboy

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    Thanks for a good rational reply. I agree there is no evidence of a goo-to-man evolution. That does not negate thiestic evolution. However it may give us a clue as to how God created. As I said in an earlier post I see no conflict between thiestic evolution and the first chapter of Genesis.

    I have never figured out how literalists reconcile the two creation stories in Genesis. Maybe we should start a thread on that topic.

    I agree the world of God is infallible, Tat is not the problem. It is man's interpretation of the word of God that is fallible. If this were not true we would all be in agreement on all things.
     
  16. ReformedBaptist

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    At least you identified the correct issue. It is the interpretation of the evidence. However, the argument isn't science vs. interpretation of the Bible. The argument is the interpretation of the evidence, period. Either we interpret the evidence using naturalisic philosophies and the scientific method coupled with iniformitarianism, or we interpret the evidence using the Scriptures.

    Whoever gets the role of interpreting here becomes our authority. But regarding my asking about your view of the Scripture, I did not ask if the Lord gave us correct information regarding the Bible. I asked, or rather assumed, that you accept the inerrancy and infallibility of the Scriptures. Was I wrong?

    RB
     
  17. ReformedBaptist

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    I would agree that man's interpretation of Scripture can be fallible. If his interpretation of Scripture is correct, however, then it is not in error. So who decides how Genesis 1-11 is interpreted? Or, how can we infallibly interpret Genesis 1-11?

    I suggest that the best way to interpret Genesis 1-11 is by Scripture itself. Is Genesis 1-11 figurative or literal? It is an honest and valid question in my opinion because the Sciptures contain language that is figurative. But is Genesis 1-11 figurative or is it meant to be taken as historical narrative?

    I say let the Scriptures decide the answer, and you will have an infallible interpretation. Look at Moses, the Apostles, Jesus. How did they view and speak about Genesis 1-11 ? Does the biblical evidence teach us they viewed it figuratively or as historical events?

    Concerning the two creation accounts in Genesis I have never seen a conflict between them.

    RB
     
  18. lbaker

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    Well that depends on how you look at it. I believe that God has inerrantly and infallibly communicated His message in scripture, or in other words, He has said exactly what He intended to say. But, we are certainly fallible and errant in our ability to perfectly interpret what He says to us.

    For instance, Revelation talks about all the bizarre creatures like dragons and beasts with 10 heads (or is it 7?) and horses with scorpion stings and stuff. I don't believe there are going to ever be literal creatures like that flying around. But, I believe they are symbolic of something God is telling us that is truly going to happen or has already happened.
     
  19. ReformedBaptist

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    I think there is an obvious difference between looking at the text of Scripture figurtively or literally. One can see figures in Scripture and still hold to the inerrancy and infallibility of Scripture. So, I am not sure it depends on how one looks at it. Perhaps I am a bit cut and dry, but either the Scriptures themselves are inerrant and infallible, or they aren't.

    But I think you are affirming your conviction that they are.

    RB
     
  20. Thinkingstuff

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    Curious. There are several different views on the creation account in Genesis. Most fundalmentalist and baptist view a literal 6 day creation from the account. There is another prevelant view that genesis catagorizes creation into an outline of how God created the universe. Three days in general and three days in specific. So with both these views the adherents both say they believe in inerrancy and infaliblity. What do you say?
     
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