Intelligent Man—Creation? or Accident?

“O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the godless chatter and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge, for by professing it some have missed the mark as regards the faith.” —I Timothy 6:20,21, RSV

IN 1925, a young biology instructor named John Scopes went on trial in Tennessee for teaching the theory of evolution in a public school, thus violating a statute that had recently been passed prohibiting such teaching. The defense was led by the celebrated criminal lawyer, Clarence Darrow, who argued that the state law was prompted by religious bias, and therefore violated the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States. The young man was convicted, but was later released by the state supreme court on a technicality. The law, however, remained on the books until 1967.

After a lapse of more than half a century the issue has again surfaced in the courts. An Arkansas law requiring, in essence, that the public schools accord “balanced treatment” to teaching both the Bible account of creation and the theory of evolution was overturned by the ruling federal judge in January of this year on the ground that the purpose of the law was to compel the teaching of religion in the public schools. It seems likely this ruling will be appealed by the state.

But that will by no means end the matter. A similar law already passed in the State of Louisiana will shortly face a test in the federal courts, and eighteen other states now have or are considering such laws, any of which may, in time, be likewise challenged by Charles Darwin’s many proponents. The contest promises to be long and bitter, and will be watched with great interest, for a recent poll indicates that seventy-six percent of the U.S. public favor the teaching of both the Bible account of creation and the theory of evolution.

In the 1925 trial of young Scopes the religionists were fairly well united in their opposition to the teaching of evolution in the schools. Since that time, however, the theory seems to have gained such acceptance and respectability that included among the plaintiffs against the State of Arkansas in its recent defeat was an array of distinguished religionists—Roman Catholic, Episcopal, and Methodist bishops; Southern Baptist, Presbyterian, and Methodist ministers, and representatives of Reform Judaism’s synagogues.

One account of the trial stated that “the defenders of creationism were their own worst enemies.” If the reports in the press were correct, that judgment was not unduly harsh, and the creationists did not, indeed, present a very good case. One account stated that creationists “calculate the world’s birth as 4004 B.C.,” while another report cited the hardliner creationists’ belief in the “relatively recent creation of the world—about 10,000 years ago.” As a matter of fact, no such estimates of the world’s age are stated in the Genesis account of creation, nor does the Bible anywhere purport to give such information.

It is clear, however, that the promotion of the theory of evolution is a challenge to the credibility, not only of the Genesis account of creation, but also to the reliability of the entire Bible, for when so important an area of Bible truth is brought into serious question it must inevitably raise doubts about the teachings of the rest of God’s holy Word.

The New Columbia Encyclopedia informs us that “evolution is the concept which embodies the belief that existing animals and plants developed by a process of gradual, continuous change from previously existing forms. This theory, also known as descent with modification, constitutes organic evolution. … Organic evolution, as opposed to the belief in the special creation of each individual species as an immutable form, conceives of life as having had its beginnings in a simple primordial mass (probably originating in the sea) from which, through the long eras of time, arose all subsequent living forms.” We have taken the liberty of underscoring the words ‘concept,’ ‘belief,’ and ‘theory’ in the above passage to emphasize that evolution is not a proven fact, but merely a concept, a belief, a theory. As for the word theory, which seems to be so weighty and convincing when used in connection with the concept of evolution, The Reader’s Digest Great Encyclopedic Dictionary defines it as “a plan or scheme existing in the mind only; a speculative or conjectural view of something.”

Evolutionists claim to find support for their unproved theory by arranging the fossils of animals unearthed by paleontologists according to size and form, and displaying these in museums around the world. It has long been their hope to discover enough such remains of extinct and current species of animals of similar structure to present an unbroken gradation from the lowest to the highest development of the species. But there are too many missing links in their so-called chain of evidence to prove their theory. They have never found the perfect gradation they hoped for. The reason there are missing links, of course, is precisely shown in the Genesis account of creation, where it is recorded that each species was separately and uniquely created at a separate and specific point in time.

Another argument of the evolutionists is based on the similarity of physical structure that is found in the different species of animals, and also the structural similarities in different families of plants, all of which they suggest came about through evolution. Of course, there are obvious anatomical similarities between the various species of animals, including man; but this fact does not prove these likenesses are the result of evolution. Indeed, one could well argue for the opposite point of view, for surely an all-wise and all-powerful God would supply each and every separate species of his creation with that physical equipment which would most suitably enable it to sustain life under the conditions in which it found itself. It is inevitable that there should be structural similarities for the simple reason that the same mechanical and biological principles are commonly involved in the case of each of these creations. And thus we find, logically, that each separate species of animal, including man, has been created with physical equipment that is similar in many respects, but modified to enable each species best to survive in its own separate environment, whether it be land, ocean, or sky, and that without mutation.

Evolutionists also contend that their theory is supported by the results obtained in cross-breeding of animals, and in crossing of plants. But all that has been accomplished through such experimental breeding and crossing is the production of new varieties, but no new species. The resulting hybrid animals cannot reproduce their own kind, and hybrid plants, if left to nature, invariably revert to their own natural color and form, confirming the fact that these are contrary to nature.

Geologists tell us that whenever they have come upon the fossils of a species that is new to them, the new species appeared suddenly on the scene without any introductory gradations, showing, once more, that each new species discovered had been separately and specially created. So that, whereas the records of fossils repudiate the concept of evolution, the very same fossil records confirm the Bible account of the direct creation of the various species. And whereas the inability of hybridization to reproduce its own kind also refutes the teaching of evolution, that same fact confirms the Bible teaching that all living beings were directly created by God, and can reproduce only their own kind.

The fact is that the evolution theory in its application to humanity, and indeed even in respect to the lower orders of animals and plants, has never been proven. It is the same now as it was from its beginning—a theory only. No true scientist makes any claim that it has been proven. Some who say they have faith in the theory have openly conceded there is no conclusive proof of its truth. One of these was Dr. William Bateson, an English biologist, who wrote: “Darwin speaks no more with philosophical authority. … No evidence has been discovered to verify his genesis of species.” He went on to say, “Do we, as a matter of fact, find in the world about us variations occurring of such a kind as to warrant faith in a contemporary progressive evolution? … The appearance of contemporary variation proves to be an illusion.”

Professor H. Newman of the University of Chicago, long ago stated, “Reluctant as we may be to admit it, honesty compels the evolutionist to admit that there is no absolute proof of organic evolution.” It is perhaps not widely known that Charles Darwin himself made one of the most damaging statements in contradiction of his own theory when in his “Origin of Species” he frankly admitted, “In spite of all the efforts of trained observers, not one change of species into another is on record.” To that we say, Amen! But it is no surprise to Bible students, who believe the story of special creation as recorded in Genesis, to learn that scientists, after so long a search, can find no positive proof to support a theory that is obviously at variance with the Word of God.

Briefly, then, evolution claims that the species of being we know as man evolved over long eons of time from a different and lower species, probably the anthropoid ape. The Bible, however, says the various species of animals, including man, were separately created by God in the immutable form in which we presently find them, and that each can reproduce only its own kind. (Gen. 1:1-27) We find this Bible statement to be true today, despite continued experiments of present-day biologists to produce hybrid animals that can reproduce their own kind.

Of all living creatures on earth, only man has the ability to think. Man alone, as an intelligent being, can plan, design, fashion, execute, and choose to do or not to do. This ability to reason is found in man alone. This is so because, of all God’s living creation, only man was made in God’s image, and consequently man was given dominion over every other living thing that moved upon the earth.—Gen. 1:27-31

Even assuming the unthinkable, for the moment, that a highly complex organism such as man could have come into being over the ages by chance, as opposed to having been created by a supreme intelligent Being and by him endowed with reason, we are moved to ask, “How could such a product of chance, which would in essence be nothing more than an automaton, be able to think?” This ability of man to think is what sets him completely apart from the lower animals, and is additional proof that he is a separate creation of God and made in the image of his Creator, the all-wise God and Lord of the universe. In recognition of this unique and marvelous faculty that he gave to man, God has graciously invited his highly favored human creation to “come, let us reason together.”—Isa. 1:18

In the area of inorganic matter also, the evolutionists deny the existence of a supreme, intelligent Creator. They suggest that all matter came into being billions of years ago as the result of a gigantic cosmic explosion. This is another unproved theory, or conjecture. The Bible, on the other hand, states simply, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”—Gen. 1:1

Evolutionists have no satisfactory explanation for the appearance of life in the world, whereas the Bible tells us that God is the source of all life. The psalmist David says, “With thee [God] is the fountain of life.” Job wrote, “The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.” Jesus said, “The Father hath life in himself.”—Ps. 36:9; Job 33:4; John 5:26

The Genesis account of creation states that God implanted that life principle of which he is the source in the different living things he created, such as the grass, the herbs, the fruit trees, the great whales, the birds, and every living creature, each of which in turn would bring forth in its own special and separate kind. (Gen. 1:11-25) When we come to the creation of man we read, “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”—Gen. 2:7

If one were to enter a vast, unspoiled forest, and after several days’ journey into that dark wilderness suddenly come upon a small clearing containing a garden with straight, neatly tilled rows of earth putting forth well tended, evenly spaced vegetable plants, the immediate reaction would be that this is undeniably the product of an intelligent being, and not of chance. Every day of our lives we are aware of the mighty, precise, and undeviating physical laws that control and maintain order in the universe—gravity, magnetism, electricity, light, and sound; we observe the regularity and dependability of the rising and setting of the sun, the comings and goings of the moon, the pull of the tides, the constancy of the swings around the solar system of wide-ranging heavenly bodies—all testifying to the presence and overruling power of a Supreme Intelligent Being in the affairs of the world and the universe. The young shepherd David, as he tended his flocks, was constantly impressed with the beauty, wonder, and majesty of the world around him, and reverently ascribed that order and magnificence to Jehovah God. Overwhelmed by his contemplation of these wonders of the universe, David wrote, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth his handiwork.”—Ps. 19:1,2

Coming to the heart of our discussion, it seems inescapably clear that one cannot believe both in the Bible account of creation and man’s ultimate destiny on the one hand, and in the theory of evolution on the other hand, for these two are diametrically opposed. Evolution says all matter and all life came into being by chance, including man. The Bible says that God is the Creator of the entire universe and the source of all life, and that man is the direct creation of Jehovah made from the dust of the ground, into whose body he breathed the breath of life, thus constituting man a living soul, or being. Evolution says man is the upwardly progressing result of gradual change from an inferior being to one of great ability and intelligence. The Bible says man was directly created from the dust of the ground as a perfect human being in the image of his Maker, but is now a fallen, dying creature needing a Redeemer.—Gen. 1:27,31; 2:7; Rom. 3:10,23; I John 4:14

Furthermore, the authors of the Bible believed that God is the all-wise, all-powerful, all-loving Creator of the universe and everything that it contains, and they expressed their beliefs in their writings and in their lives. David wrote, “The word of the Lord is right; and all his works are done in truth. He loveth righteousness and judgment; the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord. By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap; he layeth up the depth in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the Lord: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him.” (Ps. 33:4-8) The Prophet Isaiah wrote, “For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited; I am the Lord, and there is none else.”—Isa. 45:18

The Prophet Malachi asked, “Have we not all one father? Hath not one God created us?” (Mal. 2:10) The Prophet Jonah declared, “I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land.” (Jonah 1:9) Jeremiah wrote, “God made the earth by his power, fixed the world in place by his wisdom, unfurled the skies by his understanding. At the thunder of his voice the waters in heaven are amazed; he brings up the mist from the ends of the earth, he opens rifts for the rain and brings the wind out of his storehouses. All men are brutish and ignorant, every goldsmith is discredited by his idol; for the figures he casts area sham, there is no breath in them. They are worth nothing, mere mockeries, which perish when their day of reckoning comes. God, Jacob’s creator, is not like these; for he is the maker of all. … The Lord of hosts is his name.”—Jer. 51:15-19, NEB

The great Apostle Paul wrote, “The living God … made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein; nevertheless, he left not himself without witness, in that he did good, and gave us rain from heaven, and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness.” (Acts 14:15,17) Our Lord Jesus also gave confirmation to the Genesis account of the direct creation of man by God. He said to the Pharisees, “Have ye not read, that he [God] which made them at the beginning made them male and female?”—Matt. 19:4

Through his Word of truth God himself claims to be the great Creator. “Where wast thou,” he asked Job, “when I laid the foundations of the earth?” (Job 38:1-4) Through the Prophet Isaiah Jehovah asks, “To whom … will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their hosts by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might. … Hast thou not known? Hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? There is no searching of his understanding.”—Isa. 40:25,27,28

The Bible, through all God’s holy prophets, abundantly testifies that Jehovah is the Source of all life; that he is the Creator of the universe and all that is therein; and that man and all other living beings on earth were the product of his direct and separate creation. If one should disagree with the combined testimony of all these inspired writers of the Bible; if all these holy prophets, including Jesus, are wrong in their plain statements that God is the Creator of all things, including the direct creation of man himself, then how could such a one possibly have faith in any other of their teachings? Or in the Bible itself?

Such a viewpoint would deny the Bible statement that man was created perfect, was disobedient, and condemned to death. It would demolish the basic teaching of the entire Bible of man’s need for a Redeemer, even Jesus Christ, who gave himself a ransom for all, that all in due time might have everlasting life. It would utterly destroy the beautiful, golden theme of almighty love that pervades the Bible with glorious hope from end to end. It would replace a personal, caring God of love and intelligence with a cold, unthinking, implacable force that is subject to no direction, that yields to no control, and is utterly devoid of any end or purpose. It would deny the abundant and undeniable evidence of our God-given senses that man and the entire universe are the products of a wise, powerful, just and loving Creator. It would destroy the hope of mankind for a resurrection of the dead and the opportunity to live happily forever.

In his letter to the church at Rome, Paul was not speaking of or to evolutionists, but his words are surely appropriate to our discussion. He said, “All that may be known of God by men lies plain before their eyes: indeed God himself has disclosed it to them. His invisible attributes, that is to say his everlasting power and deity, have been visible, ever since the world began, to the eye of reason, in the things he has made. There is therefore no possible defense for their conduct; knowing God, they have refused to honor him as God, or to render him thanks. Hence all their thinking has ended in futility, and their misguided minds are plunged into darkness.”—Rom. 1:19-21, NEB

Over the years, the Bible has never been without its detractors. It is paradoxical, however, that the ranks of its opponents should be swelled in these last days by the beneficiaries of the very increase of knowledge which the Bible states would be a sign of Jesus’ second advent and of the end of this age. (Dan. 12:1-4; Matt. 24:3,21) Many of the severest critics of the Bible’s authenticity are found among those who have most greatly benefited from the increased access to higher learning that has taken place in the last one hundred years, and who pride themselves on their superior understanding.

But even herein there is cause for joy, for the appearance at this time of these learned detractors of the Bible is another sign that this present evil world is nearing its end. Jude tells us, “Beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; how that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.” (Jude 17,18) And who were the apostles who so warned the Lord’s people? The Apostle Paul was one. He wrote to Timothy, “O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: which some professing have erred concerning the faith.”—I Tim. 6:20,21

Peter was another. He said, “Be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Savior; knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of his coming [presence]? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.”—II Pet. 3:2-4

Happily, Peter does not stop his lesson there. He continues by saying that this present evil world, or social arrangement, is soon to be destroyed, and followed by a new world, or social arrangement, “wherein dwelleth righteousness.” Thus, Peter tells us, all God’s promises recorded throughout the entire Bible for the resurrection of the dead and the restoration of humanity to everlasting life will shortly be fulfilled. This is Peter’s way of describing that long-promised kingdom of Christ that will bless all the families of the earth, and for which Jesus taught us to pray. —II Pet. 2:5-13; Matt. 6:9-13; Rev. 20: 6; 21:1-5; Gen. 22:18

And what will be the lot of the modern-day detractors of the Bible, and the proponents of science, falsely so called? They, too, will greatly rejoice in the wonderful light of the new dispensation, for Jehovah’s love is matchless, and his mercy beyond understanding. From the very beginning it has been God’s plan and purpose, through Christ, that all should be saved, and come to a knowledge of the truth. When Christ’s glorious kingdom is established in the earth, “the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.” (Ps. 40:5) And all mankind will be accorded an even more wonderful opportunity, this time based on a most profitable experience with sin and death, to gain happy, everlasting life in a new and glorious world wherein dwelleth righteousness!

Dawn Bible Students Association
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