Category: Religion and Philosophy
I didn't intend to stir such discussion over my blog entry, but yet am somewhat glad if people are even slightly questioning their evolutionary worldview. So besides remarks about my personal character, I am glad at the intellectual discussion. I've added below to the discussion.
The audience for which I was intending the blog entry was for those who are grounded in their Christian faith and yet believe Darwinian evolution. Most of this class of people states that they have melded the two beliefs together. They do this by stating that the 7 days of creation are not 24-hour days but long eras of time. They feel that this then allows for the time needed for evolution in the Biblical creation story. I wanted to point out that time is not the most important problem when trying to combine Christian belief and evolutionary theory. The 7 days vs. billions of years is not the major problem to resolve. What I believe the more important problem and contradiction to resolve is that of death and suffering's place in history. This is what I believe is the major dilemma. Even if God's 7 days were actually trillions of years of evolutionary processes (I don't believe they are since the terms "morning" and "evening" are used.), death would be an important part of the process of God creating animals, plants and people since part of the evolutionary process includes the "survival of the fittest" and therefore the extinction of the unfit. If God used this type of process to create humans, then God would be to blame for death existing in the human experience.
If some would claim that life merely reproduced over trillions of years without any organisms dying then allowing for the transition of single celled organisms to evolve to complex life forms, then the fossil record would show all created life forms in the same strata of earth until the more recent time when Adam sinned and allowed death to enter the life experience.
For those who claim to be Christians and yet believe that man is not responsible for death entering the human experience in the Fall, then these discussions would seem absurd and not worth the trouble. I am merely pointing out that much Christian doctrine (i.e. pre-fallen paradise, Adam being responsible for death entering humanity, Jesus coming to reverse and destroy the curse of sin and death that Adam had caused) disagrees with the claim that death has always existed from the beginning of life's first existence. Also, if any theist claims that death has been a part of the life-experience from the beginning, then God is the one who is to blame for the existence of death; the Bible clearly opposes this belief. (The enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy; Jesus came to bring abundant life. Death entered by the first Adam's sin, everlasting life entered by the second Adam's (Jesus') sacrifice.)
Does that make sense?
Finally, I know this discussion may seem weird to some. Most people assume that life has always been the way it is today. It's hard to imagine the possibility that there was once a time when people, plants and animals did not die, kill or eat one another. It never really ever occurred to me that there could have been a time when death did not exist on earth. In high school I even wrote a poem about the eternity of death's existence:
A sparrow died last night
while you slept.
I know because the world is the same.
Everyday we die
and never cease to die.
Like a rivers endless flow
it might be better dry,
treasures unhidden then,
but it flows eternally
Here's a cool Scripture that reminds me of this river of death that covers the world.
7 On this mountain he will destroy
the shroud that enfolds all peoples,
the sheet that covers all nations;
8 he will swallow up death forever.
The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears
from all faces;
he will remove the disgrace of his people
from all the earth.
The LORD has spoken.
May this discussion prove helpful in some way I pray.
For those who assume that the way the world is and works presently is the way it has always been in the past, I would ask you to imagine a past time in history when death and suffering did not exist.
For evolutionist...out of mud and struggle and chaos things have gradually been growing more beautiful, complex and maturity. From muck came life; from life came cells, then growing into more complex forms, better and better over time. In an oversimplified way, from monkey to caveman to human. From short lifespan, to longer lifespan as time progresses.
Those who believe in Creation...life was made whole and perfect from the first instant and has since then gradually been in decline. Humans used to not die, then after the fall lived about 900 years, and then gradually came to about 120, then to about 80. Things are getting more unstable over time and we require a Savior and the Saviors kingdom to save us.
One view implies that out of mess and chaos life in the present universe is getting better and better.
The other view states that out of perfect harmony, life is gradually getting more and more unstable.
These views seem as opposite as up is to down.
|Currently reading: |
The Case for a Creator: A Journalist Investigates Scientific Evidence That Points Toward God
By Lee Strobel
Release date: By 01 March, 2005