Yes, Darwin Was Wrong
Brian D. Dykstra, teacher at Hope PR Christian School in Walker, MI
“What advantage is it to us to know that God has created, and by His providence doth still uphold all things?” (Heidelberg Catechism, Q. 28).
The November 2004 issue of the National Geographic had an article written by David Quammen. He began his article with the question, “Was Darwin wrong?” The question also appeared on the magazine’s cover. Imagine! A magazine known for its belief in evolution even asking the question! Could it be possible that an article in the National Geographic would present both sides, creation and evolution, then explain positive and negative aspects of both?
I should have known the question was not being posed because there was some genuine debate of evolution or creation in the article. I had hoped the author might point out some of the difficulties and shortcomings of evolution. Such ideas were dispelled immediately upon turning the page where in large letters one reads, “NO. The evidence for Evolution is overwhelming.” Do you also find it telling that “evolution” was printed with a capital “E”?
An interesting aspect of the article is that Quammen cites Gallup polls in which responders were presented the choices of evolution, creation or a mixture of the two as explanations for human existence. He reports, “Gallup interviewers posed exactly the same choices in 1982, 1993, 1997, and 1999. The creationist conviction—that God alone, and not evolution, produced humans—has never drawn less than 44 percent. In other words, nearly half the American populace prefers to believe that Charles Darwin was wrong where it mattered most.” Evolutionists are frustrated that they have made no headway in reducing the percentage of Americans who hold to creation.
The theory of evolution is very important to those who hold to it. This is evident when Quammen writes, “Evolution is both a beautiful concept and an important one, more crucial nowadays to human welfare, to medical science, and to our understanding of the world than ever before. It’s also deeply persuasive—a theory you can take to the bank. The essential points are slightly more complicated than most people assume, but not so complicated that they can’t be comprehended by any attentive person. Furthermore, the supporting evidence is abundant, various, ever increasing, solidly interconnected, and easily available in museums, popular books, textbooks, and a mountainous accumulation of peer-reviewed scientific studies. No one needs to, and no one should, accept evolution merely as a matter of faith.”
Again, Quammen views faith as “merely” believing something which cannot be proved. Faith is never defined as an assured confidence which the Holy Spirit works in the hearts of the elect through the preaching of the gospel (Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 7).
Yet we are saddened that so many have compromised the clear teaching of Genesis in order to find an accepted place in scientific circles. Quammen even points out that there are papal pronouncements which state that Roman Catholic dogma has room for the view that God begins the process but uses evolution as the means to create all things. We are also aware of Christian colleges where evolution has been allowed to creep into science departments.
Is there a temptation for us to moderate our stance on the biblical truth of creation? Do some think our churches would be more attractive to more people in areas where our denomination does mission work if we were to abandon such a literal reading of Genesis? Would the larger Christian community view us as not being so backward or stridently conservative, if we were to adopt some form of evolutionary thinking? Other denominations have thought there was enough to be gained by accepting some form of evolution to change their positions.
While some churches have thought the gains of evolution outweigh maintaining biblical creation, Lord’s Day 10 of theHeidelberg Catechism tells us what would be lost. God upholds and governs all things with His fatherly hand. Therefore, we know that whatever happens to us is not the result of chance but is the will of our loving heavenly Father. Knowing that our God is the almighty Creator assures us that nothing can separate us from His love. These are not advantages which we are willing to trade for acceptance in the world.
Yet evolution must be presented to our students because it is such an important part of modern society. Not only does evolution dominate the scientific realm which plays a large role in our society but it is also the basis of modern morality (of the lack thereof). We need to know enough about evolution to be able to point out its flaws. Yet while instructing our children we must always answer the question, “Was Darwin wrong?” by saying, “Yes! Because not only does evolution have an atheistic viewpoint, it also denies us the comfort of having all things directed by a loving heavenly Father who is strong enough not to allow anything to separate us from His love.”