Summary: This study examines the creation account in Genesis with the rest of scripture and compares this to Theistic Evolution (or the Gap Theory).
Is ‘Theistic Evolution’ consistent with scripture? Theistic evolution is the philosophy that God used evolution to create the world. Those who teach this claim that God started creation and then allowed natural processes to evolve us into what we are today. One thing that amazes me is how people will see hidden doctrine between the verses of scripture but can’t see or even deny the plain truth presented in scripture. By the end of this study, I think you will see clearly that evolution is completely incompatible with scripture. My goal is not to force anyone to believe what they don’t want to believe. My hope is that you will see and choose truth, but my goal is to force a decision. I want this to be a fork in the road. The Bible commands that we compare teaching to the revealed word of God. We are commanded to test all things in light of scripture and then choose what is good, and abstain from all that is evil – or contrary to God’s word. I want to begin by summarizing the ‘Gap Theory’ or ‘Theistic Evolution’.
The Gap Theory
This is based on the assumption that there is a pause between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Verse two says, the earth was without form and void. The Gap Theory claims that there is a break between these two passages that we can’t see. God created a world that was later destroyed in judgment. Genesis 1:2 picks up after the judgment has occurred.
There are a few ‘proofs’ that Theistic Evolutionists use as evidence. It is presented that God created the heavens (plural), which would imply that this is at least the second time heaven was created. It is then argued that Genesis 1:28 in the KJV says that God commanded man to replenish the earth, possibly implying that man was destroyed. The same word is used in Genesis 9:1 when Noah was commanded to replenish the earth after the flood. In Genesis 1:2, we are told that the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. Since water was used as judgment in Genesis 8-9, it is assumed that the waters in Genesis 1 are a previous judgment.
Another proof text is 2 Peter 3
8 But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
This is interpreted to mean that a day in the Genesis account is not a 24 hour day, but could mean a thousand years or longer. Some theorize that each day represents a time period that could have even been millions of years.
Another piece of evidence provided is satan’s presence in the garden as a fallen creature. Since he was already a fallen creature, he must have been condemned before creation. In the Garden of Eden, he was already an enemy of God. When did He fall? Theistic Evolution teaches that satan’s fall is the cause of the judgment that brought the world to its flooded state in Genesis 1:2. Perhaps he led the old world into sin and God judged it.
Though this overview is not in great detail, I believe this accurately summarizes the Gap Theory / Theistic Evolution position. This view of scripture means that Christians can accept evolution without denying their faith. Instead of choosing evolution or God, they marry the two into a theistic evolution doctrine. This allows Theistic Evolutionists to agree with Darwinism on the age of the earth and fossils. The geological layers are not as the result of a flood, but millions of years worth of accumulation from fossils and catastrophic events. Man can then evolve because God has set the process in motion. He created evolution and laws that govern evolution such as mutations, natural selection and other evolutionary theories.
Adding to the Word
It is a serious offense to dilute or pollute the word of God. Diluting the word of God is to water it down and remove plainly stated truth. For example, many modern churches eliminate the nature of God when it conflicts with their feel-good message. The Bible tells us that God is merciful and He is just. Mercy forgives, but justice demands retribution for violations against the law of God. The Bible says that Jesus is love and compassion, but He also is the judge who will use a rod of iron to shatter the rebellious like a potter’s vessel. God’s mercy does not nullify God’s justice. His compassion does not end judgment. It was because of God’s mercy that He paid the penalty demanded by His justice. Contrary to the opinion of some, God will never violate His own character. The law is based on God’s own character. God does not change. Yet, we somehow think that God should change to fit our idea of what fairness should be. Jesus did not change God’s character, nor did the cross change the way God looks at sin. Romans 3 tells us that God was just and the justifier of the one who puts their trust in Jesus. The penalty for justice was paid through the cross of Jesus Christ. Therefore, God was just – the penalty for sin was paid, and God justified us by our faith in His provision for our sin.