Summary: Does science support the theory of evolution, or the Biblical account of Creation? A challenging and informative look at our origins
ORIGINS #1: CREATION
THERE HAS TO BE MORE TO LIFE:
It was September 1990, twenty years ago, and I had just graduated from high school. I was at an all-nighter drive-in with some of my friends. It was early in the morning, hours before the sun came up, when I turned to one of my friends and said, “There has to be more to life than this!” We were living the so-called good life – going to bars, getting drunk, dating girls, living it up and partying – but there was still something missing. There was an emptiness inside of me. That weekend was a catalyst that sent me on a journey to discover how to find lasting satisfaction and fulfillment in life.
Do you ever wonder where we came from? How did we get here? And what is our purpose on this third rock from the sun? What is the meaning of life? What is our destiny? These are some of the questions that we are going to consider in this ‘Origins’ series.
CREATION VERSUS EVOLUTION:
There are two main beliefs about our origins. One is atheistic evolution, and the other is the Biblical account of creation. What are these two different beliefs? Ankerberg and Weldon give a great contrasting look at these two different viewpoints in the following chart:
Ultimate Reality: Impersonal matter. No God exists.
The universe was created by chance events without ultimate purpose.
Man is the product of impersonal time plus chance plus matter. As a result, no man has eternal value or dignity nor any meaning other than that which is subjectively derived.
Morality is defined by every individual according to his own views and interests. Morality is relative because every person is the final authority for his own views.
The afterlife brings eternal annihilation (personal extinction) for everyone.
Ultimate Reality: An infinite, personal, loving God.
The universe was lovingly created by God for a specific purpose.
Man was created by God in His image and is loved by Him. Because of this, all men are endowed with eternal value and dignity. Their value is not derived ultimately from themselves, but from God Himself.
Morality is defined by God and immutable because it is based on God’s unchanging character.
The afterlife involves either eternal life with God (personal immortality) or eternal separation from Him (personal judgment).
(John Ankerberg & John Weldon, Darwin’s Leap of Faith: Exposing the False Religion of Evolution).
The theory of evolution teaches that life began billions of years ago by a cosmic accident. This event, called The Big Bang, “led to the formation of the universe, according to the prevailing cosmological theory of the universe's early development.” This theory teaches that from this chaotic explosion, life (somehow miraculously!) evolved from non-life, and that we as human beings share a common ancestry with apes and monkeys. This theory was “first proposed in the nineteenth century by Charles Darwin, according to which the Earth's species have changed and diversified through time under the influence of natural selection. Life on Earth is thought to have evolved in three stages. First came chemical evolution, in which organic molecules were formed. This was followed by the development of single cells capable of reproducing themselves. This stage led to the development of complex organisms capable of sexual reproduction.”
The Biblical account of creation on the other hand teaches that we’re not here by chance, and we’re not just some cosmic freak accident. Rather, we are the special and unique creation of a God who made us in His own image, loves us, and has a wonderful plan for our lives. The Bible says, “Long ago, even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure. So we praise God for the wonderful kindness he has poured out on us because we belong to his dearly loved Son.” (Ephesians 1:4-6, NLT).
What are the ramifications of these two different belief systems?
If we believe in the theory of evolution, then we are only complex animals with no ultimate purpose or meaning in life. If Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species is correct, that we are just the chance product of natural selection, then we are only slightly more evolved then our near-relative the chimpanzee. If we’re just animals, then it doesn’t matter how we live. If there is no God, then there is no absolute truth, no definitive right or wrong. If that’s what we believe about our past and where we came from, then how does it affect our future? When we die, our final destiny is to become worm-food, rotting in the grave.