I’m done with it, for good.
To all my friends who are Young Earth Creationists,
I used to be one of you. I used to believe that Evolution was nothing more than just a way for atheists to explain the amazing world around them without God. To me, the theory of Evolution was basically the equivalent to “Godless-random-chance.” I had heard of the so called “God-Guided-Evolution” idea but I was sure the people who believed that idea, desperately wanted to be accepted by the secular science community and so compromised their Christian beliefs for the praise of men. I was not so wishy-washy. I went to Creationist conferences with Ken Ham and many others. All of them intent on refuting Evolution as something that threatened the Christian faith.
But did I ever talk to someone who believed in both God and Evolution? No! Did I ever try to find out what they believed? I thought I didn’t need to. I was sure I already knew what they believed. Man evolved from apes, right?? Done! I know it all already!
How ignorant, naïve and arrogant of me.
Last summer I spoke to a few people who are solid in their faith in God and live in a Christ-like manner, yet they firmly believe in Evolution. It opened my mind towards the idea of God-Guided-Evolution. Before last summer, I had never heard it explained by someone who believed it. Once explained to me, I didn’t understand all of it, and I didn’t believe it right away. But the idea gained my respect. Over the following year, I took over 30 credits of science including chemistry, physics, biology and astronomy. My brain is being trained to think like a scientist. Gathering facts by observations, making hypotheses that can generate predictions, then testing those predictions with multiple experiments. Keeping one’s own bias out of the equation is a difficult thing for many scientists, yet it is crucial for accuracy. Science is a social activity; you rely on the research and opinions of other scientists, testing each other’s experiments, giving and receiving criticism. Science is a systematic search for the truth through observation and experimentation.
Evolution vs Creation ceased to be a touchy-feely-emotional topic for me. It became science. I applied the Scientific Method as best I could. My research question: How did God Create the Earth? I looked for scientific facts and evidence everywhere I could think of, Christian websites, blogs, books, friends, and in every class I took at the community college and university levels.
For a research project in one of my astronomy classes, I chose the topic: The Origins of Our Solar System, and spent an entire semester looking for answers for my own personal research question (mentioned above) as well as coming up with a 10-page paper and power point presentation for my class project.
I believe Evolution is an extremely scientific and reasonable explanation for the world I see around me. Lest you think I have become brainwashed this past year by my professors who teach Evolution, let me remind you that in this past year my faith in God has become far more real, beautiful, and tangible than it has ever been in my entire life.
Evolution and Creation are not opposites. You do not have to reject one to believe in the other. I do NOT believe our world came about by “Godless-Random-Chance”. I believe God created the world. It says he did in the first chapter of Genesis. However, that chapter does not explain how or when he created the world. I believe Evolution is the closest answer anyone has come up with that explains how and when God created the world.
I believe in Evolutionary Creation. I didn’t coin the term. Look it up (you can start here). Evolutionary Creationists are people who believe in God, yet also see the overwhelming evidence that supports the theory of Evolution. They have not swallowed Evolution nor kept the name of Creation for the praise and acceptance of anyone. In fact, they are practically shunned by most Young Earth Creationists, and quite unpopular with secular scientists. They have found that their faith in God and the theory of Evolution work in beautiful harmony together. That is exactly what I have found to be true in my own life.
From now on, when asked the question, Do you believe in Creation or Evolution?
I answer: Not either, or. It is both, and. I believe in both Evolution and Creation.
Common misconceptions about Evolution:
- Darwin made it up.
Absolutely not. Before Darwin, before the mid-1800’s, people already accepted the idea of evolution, just called it by the name of “development”.
- You have to reject God to believe in Evolution.
The definition of Evolution is not: Godless-Random-Chance. The broadest definition for Evolution is: Change.
- Genesis 1 refutes Evolution.
Genesis 1 says God Created the Heavens and the Earth. It does not say how or when he did. Evolution is not a contradiction to God and what he did. It is simply an attempt at explaining how and when God created the world. And a damn good explanation at that!
- Christians have always rejected Evolution (development) and have always believed in a Young Earth.
Actually, the first American scientist to accept and also endorse Darwin’s book The Origin of Species was a rock solid Christian named Asa Gray. Another Christian scientist of the day, David Lock, was intrigued by the one paragraph mention of finches in Darwin’s book, and decided to study them for himself. Lock was the one who did extensive research on the Galapagos finches, and later wrote a book called Darwin’s Finches which is why Darwin has received all the credit for the work that Christian Scientist David Lock did.
- If it wasn’t for Darwin, everyone would still be believing in Young Earth Creation today.
Actually, an old Earth theory was generally accepted by all people long before Darwin appeared on the scene, even among the most devout Christians. It wasn’t until the mid-1900’s that the theory of Young Earth Creation started becoming popular among Evangelicals, more than a century after Darwin published his book.
- Darwin said we evolved from apes.
No, he did not say that at all. In all sincerity, where did you come up with that idea? Have you read his book? Oh right, you are like I was once, certain you know what Evolutionists teach even though you have never read anything of theirs, much less with an open mind. According to the theory of Evolution, humans did NOT evolve from apes, monkeys, chimpanzees, baboons, gorillas, etc.
My astronomy teacher liked my paper and presentation, The Origins of our Solar System, so much that he requested to use it as an example of a well written/presented project for his future students. You can read my paper here, and view the slides to my 5 min presentation here.