Darwin’s Legacy (part 1)

I would like to share with an essay I recently wrote that debates the possibility of whether or not the Theory of Evolution and the Bible can be harmonized. This is the first part (of 3) of a complete essay.

Harvard’s Steven Jay Gould, one of the most prominent and noteworthy scientists in the field of Naturalism, proclaims that those who profess to believe in the Biblical account of creation are “religious fundamentalists, not scientists… [And] professionally trained scientists, virtually to a person, understand the factual basis of evolution and don’t dispute it” (Ashton). James Sire, a Christian, agrees with him when he writes: “Evolution by natural causes is a fact. Nature did it… [E]volution is a fact. End of story” (99). And he adds that if we venture to question the facts of evolution, we “only give evolutionists further evidence that we Christians are benighted ignoramuses—just as they have always thought” (105). The very foundation of modern science sits upon the shoulders of the Theory of Evolution, so who are we to question it? We must conclude that the idea that God created using naturalistic means is our only and best explanation. But Hank Hanegraaff, a brilliant scientist himself and a formidable textual critic says this alternative is impossible: “If Theistic Evolution is true, Genesis is at best an allegory and at worst a farce. And if Genesis is an allegory or a farce, the rest of the Bible becomes irrelevant. If Adam did not eat the forbidden fruit and fall into a life of constant sin terminated by death, there is no need for redemption” (Hanegraaff 79).

This raises a massive question of authority: is evolution and its ‘overwhelming evidence’ true, or is the historical account of God to be taken literally? As will be shown, the needed answer to our origins, in the end, comes down not to the question of evidence, but to that of authority—to agree with evolution on any level is to call into question God’s character, his Word, and to take an ax to the very foundation of our faith—the Gospel. Although many Christians want to leave this up to science and just ignore Hanegraaff’s bold statement, there are consequences to this carefree attitude. The ideas of evolution (including Theistic Evolution) and the Word cannot be harmonized—they mutually contradict themselves. Logically, one must be right and the other wrong.

The Theory of Evolution as developed by Charles Darwin in 1859 through his book The Origin of Species was a world-changing event that took the world by surprise. Ultimately it fulfilled its goal, to be able to define through natural explanation (by using blind, random processes) human origins without the involvement of an intelligent designer. Today Darwin’s teaching has become the foundation of science, the unquestionable base from which sprouts all other modern science. The overwhelming success of this theory has also given people the grounds to, as Dawkins did, become “an intellectually fulfilled atheist” (Isaak). It can easily be stated that the Theory of Evolution was involved in the growth of every major modern scientific realm.

In the 1800’s, Francis Galton was heavily influenced by his older cousin, Charles Darwin, and went on to develop the idea of Eugenics (which means “well born” in Greek) which unquestionably gave Hitler the intellectual freedom to build his “super race” in Germany, as he outlined in his book Mein Kampf. Because of this, Maser explains that “Darwin was the general source for Hitler’s notions in Biology, worship, force, and struggle, and of his rejection of moral causality in history” (Creation Studies). Eleven million people lay dead because of Hitler’s ideology. Is this an exception?

The father of communism, Karl Marx, used Darwin’s ideas in order to intellectually rid himself of God and to have the grounds to begin killing off Christians in the early Soviet Union. As he was in prison in 1860, he read The Origin of Species and with it began to form his own ideology. Such was his affection to Darwin (whom lived in the same era) that he sent a copy of his book, Das Kapital, with the inscription: “a devoted admirer.” It is also said that Marx wished to dedicate his book to Darwin (MacArthur 15). If it had ended there, there would be no real reason to wonder what the implications of Darwinism were.

Karl Marx: News of the Coming Revolt

In due course, Joseph Stalin came on the scene at the time of WWII, and the deadly ideas of Darwin and Marx combined turned him into the murderer that rid the Soviet Union of thirty million humans (Hanegraaff 12). He was one of the cruelest people to ever live and his fuel was a deep hatred towards God and Christianity. He once stated: “I’ll lend you a book to read, it will show you that the world and all living things are quite different from what you imagine, and all this talk about God is sheer nonsense,” referring of course to The Origin of Species (Creation Studies).

Now in the area of psychology and specifically sexuality, Freud stands out and it is apparent that he based his thought process on Darwin’s as well. He gave the world the sexual freedom it wanted, yet not without driving some modern consequences: divorce, homosexuality, AIDS, and most importantly, abortion. It cannot be argued against the claim that the center of Freud’s ideas came from Darwin (as well as from Huxley and Marx). Forty-three million children and counting are dead because of the intellectual freedom to abort, even though it is morally and scientifically wrong (Hanegraaff 7-8, 12).

A relatively unknown yet interesting character is Thomas Huxley who was also heavily influenced by Darwin (through “survival of the fittest”) and one could go so far as to claim that the modern problems with racism and sexism can be greatly attributed to Huxley and Darwin. Of many shocking things, Huxley wrote that “no rational man…believes that the average Negro is the equal, still less the superior, of the white man…” (Hanegraaff 9-10). This came from Darwin when he stated that in the future “civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world” (13) and then Darwin makes a claim about sexism: “we may infer… [That] the average of mental power in man must be above that of woman.” Shocking! A look at the once-leading paleontologist H. F. Osborn makes this stand out as a basic characteristic of evolution when he agrees with Darwin and Huxley, saying, “[T]he standard of intelligence of the average adult Negro is similar to that of the eleven-year-old youth…” (77).

Dawkins and Darwin

Although these are some side-effects of evolution, the central goal of it seems imply the need to get rid of God and religion in a real way through atheism. To this we must look at men like Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Sagan, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens—all atheists who base their claims on the fact of Darwin’s Theory of Evolution (MacArthur 14-16). Nietzsche and Sagan can be seen as a sample. Nietzsche, probably better than anyone, embodied the hatred towards Christianity and God that most Atheists share. He truly was one of the few evolutionists to take it to its logical conclusion: nihilism. It centers on the idea that man has come from nothing and is nothing, so there is therefore no purpose to life whatsoever and man has no value. Sagan put words to this, writing, “Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves” (15). This leads to suicide and utter hopelessness and despair, a modern trend that is on the rise.

How many humans have died because of the ideas of Nietzsche, Freud, Stalin, Hitler, and ultimately Darwin? It may be thought as foolishness to say such a thing, but it is well within the evidence to claim that Charles Darwin, through his influence on modern science, may have been the greatest murderer in the history of the world. In what alone has been covered, he is directly and indirectly accountable for well over one-hundred million deaths worldwide in the last one-hundred and fifty years!

Charles Darwin Statue

Therefore it should be no wonder that not even ten percent of our country takes the Theory of Evolution (when it excludes God) to be absolutely true. Yet it is taught in our schools as law, and those who stand up to oppose this inhumanely cruel ideology are absolutely crushed.

Biologist Helena Curtis shows this to be true by giving the typical response of a naturalists by stating: “Among Biologists, there is almost-unanimous agreement that evolution has occurred in the past and continues to occur today” (Creation Studies). John Ashton expounds on the idea and restates the position of S.J. Gould and E. Mayr (the leading Naturalists today) in that they don’t believe any scientist would reject the idea of evolution and attempt to describe it by using a literal interpretation of Genesis 1-11 (Ashton 5). If this is true, then we have serious reasons to doubt whether or not there is a God at all! Even from the Christians we hear the same, as Sire states that “whatever conflict there may be is not between the Bible and science but between our theology and scientific theory,” and later he writes, “there is a massive amount of evidence…pointing to an ancient origin of both the universe and the earth” (101, 103). Their stance is empirical: either you believe in evolution or you are at fault.

Ostrich AdviceIs there an alternative? To be continued…

Note: The works cited will be given at the end of the parts of this essay. Also, this essay cannot be quoted unless it is cited correctly.


7 thoughts on “Darwin’s Legacy (part 1)

Add yours

  1. Hi Chris,
    I read your part I and have some suggestions. What is your thesis statement? It is not clear what point you are trying to make.

    Work on review your sentences because you jump from one scientist or leading philosopher in various fields but don’t make your point of quoting them clear.

    For example:

    {The very foundation of modern science sits upon the shoulders of the Theory of Evolution, so who are we to question it? We must conclude that the idea that God created using naturalistic means is our only and best explanation.} Integrate your quotes (in brackets may not all be quotes) with your own thoughts of why you do not agree. A litany of quotes from well known authors/scientists does not let you show what you have learned from your research and why you disagree or that you have discovered an alternative viewpoint.

    See “How Now Shall We Live? by Charles Colson and Nancy Pearcey This might be helpful to see how Colson/Pearcey weave thoughts from the field of science, philosophy, Christianity, politics vs worldview.

    There are many scientists that do believe creationism, and many scientists who prefer evolution. The emotional depth to which both sides believe is as strong as the opposition position. Look at “Case for a Creator” for a fresh view from scientists who believe God was the creator, by Lee Strobel.

    Another example: How did Freud give the “world” the “excuse” for sexual freedom?

    “Now in the area of psychology and specifically sexuality, Freud stands out and it is apparent that he based his thought process on Darwin’s as well. He gave the world the sexual freedom it wanted”

    Freud’s work is more than sexuality. You are taking a big leap here, what do you mean? There is nothing that you have written that proved that shows Freud based his work on Darwinism.

    I’m sorry Chris that I’ve got to run to a meeting, but if you care for anymore info, let me know.

    Obviously you have put time in on research but more from your quotes than assimilation of your quotes before and after you have made your own statements.

    Kathy in Seattle :-)

  2. Thanks Kathy.

    My thesis is the bulk of the second paragraph–I know teachers don’t usually like it there, but it fit there I suppose. But I should shift it to make it more obvious.

    This was a tough topic, and I really had to fly through the first part–Hitler, Marx, Nietzsche, etc. I actually surprised myself by how much information is out there on this subject, so I could only skim it. I think you will find that part two and especially part three are much more opinionated on my part.
    It would’ve been better to include more of my own opinions at the beginning, as I can see your point. Especially with Freud, he is difficult to exactly nail-down as the reason why we have the level of sexual freedom we have today, but it was his main interest and investment in science.

    Thanks for looking it over. I suppose you will enjoy the next two sections more. But I do need to work on making the development of the earlier section of my essays (in this case), even at the cost of less information.

    God bless, Christopher.

  3. This is fun to read your paper and think about what you are saying. I hope I’m not overwhelming you with comments. You have probably been given guidelines on how to write a paper of this magnitude, and certain things your professor wants you to include. So, some of what I’ve suggested may not apply. Writing papers is one area I got to teach and thoroughly enjoyed. I don’t want to discourage, rather the opposite is my intent. I used to have someone read all my papers before the final copy because the writer reads between the lines, but the audience reads according to what is printed.

    I trust you are having a good time with this topic.

    PS There are a few comments below. Beware of personal pronoun use, and make sure end sentence of each paragraph furthers your ideas of the thesis sentence and/or leads into additional thoughts. The most important paragraphs are first and last paragraphs of your paper.

    Points to consider:

    One thing to remember is your audience. What are you trying to prove? You want that clear, so your audience can click with you and instead of “trying” to figure out your points.

    For example, it would be important to write an introductory sentence to your first paragraph. Why do you quote Gould? You have a reason for doing that, but to the reader you all of a sudden quote this scientist.

    The end sentence of the first paragraph could clarify where you are going with the information in paragraph #1 by writing your thesis statement.

    “This” refers to what?
    “a massive question” = . . .a question that has been debated for centuries is evolution juxtaposed to creationism or are the two approaches diometrically opposed?

    I know this isn’t your thesis but just an example of letting the reader know where you are going.

    “As will be shown, the needed answer to [“our” remove personal pronouns and replace with “mankind’s”] origin[“s” remove the “s”,

    Do you need to explain what you mean by “his Word”?
    What is the “gospel”? Why is it foundational to “faith” in God?

    in the end, comes down not to the question of evidence, but to that of authority—to agree with evolution on any level is to call into question God’s character, his Word, and to take an ax to the very foundation of our faith—the Gospel. Although many Christians want to leave this up to science and just ignore Hanegraaff’s bold statement, there are consequences to this carefree attitude. The ideas of evolution (including Theistic Evolution) and the Word cannot be harmonized—they mutually contradict themselves. Logically, one must be right and the other wrong.

  4. Chris,
    I’m glad to see you’re putting more time and research into this area; it’s good to be preparing more thoroughly to defend what you believe.
    Press on!
    Aunt Martha

  5. Chris,

    It’s clear you believe what you’re writing, but as a reader, you haven’t convinced me because you’re making some extraordinary leaps in logic. In addition, your arguments aren’t incredibly sound and are rather open to counter-argument.

    Anyone who argues with you is going to make the point that A) the bible is full of metaphor, not fact, and was intended that way, i.e., the philosophy of Jesus Christ, and B) religion has, when used by less than good people, led to many deaths in its own right. However, that does not invalidate the good religion brings to so many every day.

    In the same way, others who have used the Theory of Evolution as an excuse to kill have not invalidated that facts that lead to it. Stalin wasn’t exactly a nice guy, but does that prove that whale bones weren’t found in the middle of the Sahara Desert? (They were.)

    I think you might need to go back and whittle this down to a tighter argument.

  6. Rob,
    I wish I had the time to really hash out and answer to you. But I will do my best quickly.
    You are right to be skeptical, to believe in Creationism is very difficult. In my research I have found that few scientists really care to stand up for Evolution anymore, they know it has holes and so they are looking for an alternative.
    One of the best-sellers this year was “Signature in the Cell” by Steven C. Meyer. He is a phenomenal scientist and quite the brain. His stance against Darwinian Evolution has left him without a job, but he continued his research and has turned many many heads in the scientific community. The problem we are facing today is that Darwinian Evolution has far too many holes in it to be plausible.
    It is interesting that you bring up the whale bones in the Sahara–that is actually a proof for a world-wide flood as accounted for in Genesis (as well as many other ancient writings, but the Bible is the only ancient writing that writes history without allegory). You can make this evidence fit Evolution, but in reality it fits the concept of a world-wide flood much better.
    In my country Bolivia, at the top of many of our tallest mountains in the Andes Range, you can find shrimps and lobsters fossilized at 15,000 feet! That makes no logical sense without a world-wide flood.
    So again you will say–that is crazy Chris! You have reason to be skeptical, again. But understand that your problem should not be with the Bible, or it’s accuracy, or the fact that the flood and Creation are miracles.
    Your problem has directly to do with God–if God exists, then is there anything impossible? Should not the impossible in our terms, be expected to have happened and to happen in the future? If God exists, then yes.
    If God exists, then the Bible is his logical way of speaking to man, and Christ was God-incarnate who came to speak to man what God wanted to say.
    As for the soundness of my arguments, you likely have a point, I was not able to develop my points as well as I wanted to in such a short amount of space. Did you read the other two sections?
    Thanks for taking the time to read Rob, I hope this answers some questions.

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