We are all familiar with the iconic ape-to-man image, which shows a smooth evolutionary progression from stooped ape to upright man. But what is the scientific evidence for the various transitional species in this evolutionary ‘march of progress’?
In this short video, you will find out. Contents: Introduction 00:34 Homo neanderthalensis (‘Neanderthal Man’) 01:01 Homo erectus 01:21 Australopithecus afarensis (e.g. ‘Lucy’) 02:02 Homo habilis 02:56 Summary.
“When did I realise that the earth could be no older than about 6,000 years.? The exact moment that turned my thinking around was when a simple image was put up, of Eden with layers of fossil bones in the earth beneath Adam and Eve. This showed the stark implications for Christianity if e.g. dinosaur fossils were millions of years old. That would mean there was not only death before the Fall; many fossils also show evidence of suffering, bloodshed and violence, and diseases like bone cancer. Yet after Adam and Eve were created, God called everything He had made “very good” (Genesis 1:31). I realised that it made no sense for God to have looked at tumorous dinosaur bones on Day 6, then call this very good, knowing that cancer would cause such enormous future human misery.
The Eden-on-bones scenario also raised a fundamental doctrinal issue. If we put the shedding of blood before sin, then why did God in Jesus shed blood because of sin? (Genesis 3:21, Hebrews 9:22, 10:4–10) I could see that my compromising of God’s Word by believing the secular millions of years completely destroyed the whole basis for the Atonement (1 Corinthians 15:21–22)1.
Evolutionary geneticists have themselves realised that mutations accumulate so quickly (about 60–100 per person per generation), that the human species should have become extinct at least ten times over. Evolutionary geneticist Alexey Kondrashov asks, “Why have we not died 100 times over?*
That presumes we’ve been here for the 100,000+ years of the evolutionary timeline. It’s not a problem in the Bible’s 6,000-year timeline, with only about 200 generations since Adam. We’re still going downhill fast (Romans 8:19–22), but it’s understandable we haven’t gone extinct—there simply hasn’t been enough time.
The importance of the age of the earth in presenting the gospel message is demonstrated by the following testimony of an aboriginal man.
“I’ve been locked up in every jail in Queensland, so I’ve had the Gospel preached to me more times than I can count. But I ain’t never heard the Gospel like this. Just think … we [Aboriginal people] haven’t been here 60,000 years like they tell us; we come from Noah just 4,500 years ago, and Adam 6,000 years ago—along with everyone else alive today— that’s powerful! So Christ died for everyone—whitefella and blackfella!“
*Kondrashov, A., Contamination of the genome by very slightly deleterious mutations: why have we not died 100 times over? J. Theoretical Biology 175:583–594, 1995.
Extract from article in the latest Creation magazine from CMI (www.creation.com) Creation magazine interviews former CMI speaker/scientist Dr David Catchpoole
Part 1 explains that the cause of the universe is supernatural and cannot be explained by natural events. The word of God brought the universe into existence from something that is not visible, something, unlike ordinary visible/tangible matter and energy. This is consistent with the scientific conclusion that the matter and energy that comprise the universe cannot be eternal. Thus, the cause of the universe must be supernatural.
2. There are potential explanations anyway.
Christian astrophysicists have proposed various explanations as to how God might have created things in such a way that even Adam and Eve would have been able to see distant starlight. This section is a bit technical, but we have tried to make it as easy as possible to understand. The ideas are mind-stretching because they seem to conflict with our everyday experience of the world.
Time dilation models
Einstein is famous for discovering that time is not constant but is affected by movement (speed) and gravitational forces. This is known as Special Relativity and General Relativity, respectively. When an object moves very fast, time for that object slows down, or even stops at the speed of light. Also, when an object is in the presence of a massive object, which provides a strong gravitational attraction, time slows down. These effects are measurable and thus have been verified by experiment. They are so real that GPS satellites, which depend on precision clocks for global positioning calculations, must have their on-board clocks adjusted for the lesser gravity (being up in the sky) and for the speed of movement of the satellite.
Now we can try to imagine God creating the universe, “stretching out the heavens” (Psalm 104:2) on Day 4 of Creation Week. This would entail massive gravitational forces and enormous differences in speeds, both of which would change the time ‘out there’ compared to planet Earth. Thus, in one Earth day (Day 4) an enormous amount of time could transpire ‘out there’ allowing ample time for the light to travel to Earth. Various models have been proposed based on these ideas
Well, this is not so new; it goes back to Einstein’s era. Einstein’s findings of time changing with motion means that the speed of light (c) cannot be measured in one direction. It can only be measured for the round trip (two-way speed). This gives the average speed, but we cannot know if the speed is the same in both directions.
Einstein assumed that the speed of light in all directions was the same (called the synchrony convention) but he realized that it was an assumption without proof.
Physicists have been wracking their brains ever since Einstein to try to figure out how to measure the speed of light in one direction. For example, we might want to fire a laser beam at the moon and measure how long it takes to get there. However, we need to place a clock on the moon that is telling the same time as a clock on Earth. That is a problem because as we fly the clock to the moon, the time changes on the clock! Putting it another way, the only way the observer on the moon can know when the light beam is sent from Earth is to be sent a message, which then travels at the speed of light. It all becomes totally circular!
There has been quite some discussion about this in recent times, including from secularists—that the speed of light might not be the same in all directions.
So, what if the speed of light towards us was infinite and the speed away from us was c/2? That would give an average speed of c, which we measure. There is no way that we can know that this is not so. And that would mean that light from distant stars would reach Earth the instant that they were created. No problem!
In the last few years, apologist William Lane Craig has attacked biblical (‘young earth’) creation. However, he is not enamoured with many of the other compromise views. In 2021, he published a book, In Quest of the Historical Adam. He concluded that Adam and Eve were a real original couple who gave rise to all humans, and who committed the first acts of sin. But they were a pair of Homo heidelbergensis who lived perhaps 750,000 years ago. Dr. Jonathan Sarfati and Keaton Halley of Creation Ministries International offer their analysis of Craig’s book.
They do an excellent job of critiquing Craig’s book. God’s Bible is inerrant. It clearly provides evidence for a young earth and this video will help you support that view. Share your thoughts in the comments and share the video with your friends! If you would like to support Creation Ministries and their efforts: (https://creation.com/donate)
A rare look inside a fossilized dinosaur egg found in southern China has revealed an exquisitely preserved embryo—and evidence suggesting that some of these prehistoric creatures had even more in common with modern birds than previously thought.
Scientists said the embryo inside the egg, which was laid between 72 million to 66 million years ago during the Late Cretaceous period, was that of a two-legged, feathered carnivore known as an oviraptorid. They said, in a paper about the discovery published Tuesday in the journal iScience (interdisciplinary open-access journal), the embryo’s curled body position—with its back against the blunt end of the 7-inch-long egg and its head between its legs—resembles that of bird embryos.
For evolutionists, this find poses some difficult questions:
1. How could this fossilised embryo survive millions of years?
2. How come it resembles that of bird embryos today?
“God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day. And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds—livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds.” And it was so. And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth… And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.” Genesis 1:21-31
Why did God create the universe in six days? He tells us in His commandments: six days you shall work and the seventh day you will rest. It was a pattern for how He made man. We are to work as He did for six days and the seventh will be a rest and holy day which is used to remember, thank and praise our Creator.
“For in six days, the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” Exodus 20:121
In the soon-coming Millennial Kingdom Jesus will reinstate this pattern for man.
We are told that the new James Webb Space Telescope’s revolutionary technology will study every phase of cosmic history—from within our solar system to the most distant observable galaxies in the early universe. Webb’s infrared telescope will explore a wide range of scientific questions to help us understand the origins of the universe and our place in it.
If only they knew “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” Psalms 19:1 Then they would also know the origin of the universe.
“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1
“And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.” And it was so. And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness.” Genesis 1:14-18
Seeking Light from the First Galaxies in the Universe
Webb will directly observe a part of space and time never seen before. Webb will gaze into the epoch when the very first stars and galaxies formed, over 13.5 billion yearsago. Ultraviolet and visible light emitted by the very first luminous objects has been stretched or “redshifted” by the universe’s continual expansion and arrives today as infrared light. Webb is designed to “see” this infrared light with unprecedented resolution and sensitivity.
If they knew their Creator, they would know who stretched out the heavens: the Lord, your maker.
“and have forgotten the Lord, your Maker, who stretched out the heavens and laid the foundations of the earth” Isaiah 51:13
“Thus says God, the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people on it and spirit to those who walk in it:” Isaiah 42:5
While the vastness of the cosmos requires a time scale of billions of years, relativity theory shows that time is not a constant, and during creation week it is possible that only one day had passed on earth whilst billions of years passed in the cosmos. Supernatural causes should not be excluded from science as they now are.
Exploring Distant Worlds and the Solar System
Webb will also be a powerful tool for studying the nearby universe. Scientists will use Webb to study planets and other bodies in our solar system to determine their origin and evolution and compare them with exoplanets, planets that orbit other stars. Webb will also observe exoplanets located in their stars’ habitable zones, the regions where a planet could harbor liquid water on its surface and can determine if and where signatures of habitability may be present. Using a technique called transmission spectroscopy, the observatory will examine starlight filtered through planetary atmospheres to learn about their chemical compositions.
Understanding the big picture of the Bible/Gospel Message allows us to conclude clearly that the reason the Bible doesn’t mention extraterrestrials (ETs) is that there aren’t any. We are told there are angels and demons (fallen angels) but these are supernatural beings. Surely, if the earth were to be favoured with a visitation by real extraterrestrials from a galaxy far, far away, then one would reasonably expect that the Bible, and God in His sovereignty and foreknowledge, to mention such a momentous occasion because it would clearly redefine man’s place in the universe.
The Bible indicates that the whole creation groans and travails under the weight of sin (Romans 8:18–22). The effect of the Curse following Adam’s Fall was universal.Otherwise what would be the point of God destroying this whole creation to make way for a new heavens and Earth: “Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.” 2 Peter 3:11-13 Therefore, any ETs living elsewhere would have been (unjustly) affected by the Adamic Curse through no fault of their own—they would not have inherited Adam’s sin nature.
When Christ (God) appeared in the flesh, He came to Earth not only to redeem mankind but eventually the whole creation back to Himself (Romans 8:21, Colossians 1:20). However, Christ’s atoning death at Calvary cannot save these hypothetical ETs, because one needs to be a physical descendant of Adam for Christ to be our ‘kinsman-redeemer’ (Isaiah 59:20). Jesus was called ‘the last Adam’ because there was a real first man, Adam (1 Corinthians 15:22,45)—not a first Vulcan, Klingon etc. This is so a sinless human Substitute takes on the punishment all humans deserve for sin (Isaiah 53:6,10; Matthew 20:28; 1 John 2:2, 4:10), with no need to atone for any (non-existent) sin of his own (Hebrews 7:27).
Since this would mean that any ETs would be lost for eternity when this present creation is destroyed in a fervent heat (2 Peter 3:10, 12), some have wondered whether Christ’s sacrifice might be repeated elsewhere for other beings. However, Christ died once for all (Romans 6:10, 1 Peter 3:18) on the earth. He is not going to be crucified and resurrected again on other planets (Hebrews 9:26). This is confirmed by the fact that the redeemed (earthly) church is known as Christ’s bride (Ephesians 5:22–33; Revelation 19:7–9) in a marriage that will last for eternity.3 Christ is not going to be a polygamist with many other brides from other planets.
The Bible makes no provision for God to redeem any other species, any more than to redeem fallen angels (Hebrews 2:16).
Can I suggest you go to http://www.creation.com to read the full article by Dr. Gary Bates, “Did God create life on other planets?” Otherwise, why is the universe so big?
Astronomer Danny Faulkner describes his solution to the light travel-time problem, then discusses many of the issues with Big Bang cosmology. Dr Danny Faulkner received his PhD in astronomy from Indiana University. He is distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of South Carolina-Lancaster, where he taught astronomy and physics for over 26 years. Since January, 2013, he has been the staff astronomer at Answers in Genesis in northern Kentucky. For more information on Dr. Faulkner, please go to https://bit.ly/3kGkcFV
This 20 minute video segment is from “Beyond Is Genesis History? Vol 3 : Bible & Stars,” where they explore the universe, the Tower of Babel, the Hebrew text, and the history of interpretation of Genesis, and much more! Check it out on their website: https://bit.ly/BIGH-3
“Thus says God, the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out?” Isaiah 42:5
Justin L. Barret’s bookBorn Believersreveals some extraordinary facts about the ability and the capacity for very young children to believe and have faith. His work as a noted developmental psychologist and anthropologist at Oxford University, about the value of religious faith, has found that we are all predisposed to believe in God from birth. This is consistent with Scripture.
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart… “ Ecclesiastes 3:11
Belief begins in the brain. Under the sway of powerful internal and external influences, children understand their environments by imagining at least one creative and intelligent agent, a grand creator and controller that brings order and purpose to the world. Further, these beliefs in unseen super beings help organize children’s intuitions about morality and surprising life events, making life meaningful.
Summarizing scientific experiments conducted with children across the globe, Professor Barrett illustrates the ways human beings have come to develop complex belief systems about God’s omniscience, the afterlife, and the immortality of deities. He shows how the science of childhood religiosity reveals, across humanity, a “natural religion,” the organization of those beliefs that humans gravitate to organically, and how it underlies all of the world’s major religions, uniting them under one common source.
For believers and nonbelievers alike, Barrett offers a compelling argument for the human instinct for religion, as he guides all parents in how to effectively encourage children in developing a healthy constellation of beliefs about the world around them.
Surely, this is compelling evidence for creation and that evolution is a failed theory.
“Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness...” Genesis 1″26a
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27
Three important contributions in major scientific publications over the past three years supporting Intelligent Design indicate it is growing in support. The four general areas where ID is forging ahead are : (1) scientific advancements and peer-reviewed papers, (2) failed attempts by critics to suppress ID, (3) ID’s performance in high-level debates against top critics, and (4) a growing community of ID-friendly graduate students and scientists.
In 2018, a paper was published in BIO-Complexity by computer scientist Winston Ewert. He applied the concept of “common design” to produce a “dependency graph” model of organismal relationships based upon the principle that software designers frequently re-use the same coding modules in different programs. Ewert tested his model by comparing the distribution of gene families in nine diverse organisms to a treelike pattern predicted by Neo-Darwinism versus a dependency graph distribution used by computer programmers. His preliminary analysis showed that a common design-based “dependency graph” fit the genetic data 103000 times better than a Darwinian evolutionary tree!
In 2019, a paper on human origins published in BIO-Complexity. This paper used population genetics to refute those who cite evolutionary models to claim that human genetic diversity indicates we could not have originated from an initial couple.
In 2020 a major article came out in the Journal of Theoretical Biologywhich supported “intelligent design” by name, noting that “ID aims to adhere to the same standards of rational investigation as other scientific and philosophical enterprises, and it is subject to the same methods of evaluation and critique.” The authors predicted that we will “establish fine-tuning as a sustainable and fully testable scientific hypothesis, and ultimately a Design Science.”
There’s no better tribute to the power of ideas than a changed mind. Erik Strandness is a physician in Spokane, WA, practicing neonatal medicine. He watched a new exchange between biochemist Michael Behe and computational biologist Joshua Swamidass on the excellent and always thoughtful series Unbelievable? with Justin Brierley. He writes to differ with Swamidass and to describe his own change of ideas, from theistic evolution to intelligent design.
Joshua Swamidass is a biologist and Christian who is strongly critical of ID. He engages with Behe on the Kitzmiller-Dover case and the ID proponent’s most recent book ‘Darwin Devolves’ which critiques evolutionary theory.
The timing and circumstances of Erik Strandness intellectual evolution aren’t totally clear from the article. It preceded the Behe/Swamidass discussion. But his account is a valuable read nevertheless. As Dr. Strandness points out, Professor Swamidass doesn’t call himself a theistic evolutionist, but “he seems to share its favorable stance towards evolution and its opposition to intelligent design.”
God in a Box
Strandness reflects on his Lutheran upbringing. He “always had a place for God in my life, but that was exactly my problem: I had a place for God in my life….Part of the reason I compartmentalized my faith was because I was a science guy and science told me I was just an evolved chemical.” The compartmentalization, characteristic of theistic evolution, was unsatisfying to him. “While Swamidass’ goal is admirably to harmonize Christianity and science, I feel like all he has really done is say it’s OK to live with the tension.”
The theme of disappointment with a theistic evolutionary approach runs throughout his essay:
Interestingly, many theistic evolutionists don’t find God under the microscope but do in the courtroom. It appears they are more convinced of God’s existence by the moral argument than the scientific argument.
I’m glad that they find assurance for their faith in this minimalist approach, but it leaves a huge chasm between an awe-inspiring Big Bang and the appearance of morality and consciousness in human beings. A gap which they fill with a rather bland series of naturally selected mutations.
They give God credit for the big-ticket items, but don’t want to bother Him with the mundane task of speciation. Sadly, they reduce the book of nature to a Rorschach ink blot that offers us a vague psychological rendering of God’s subconscious rather than fine biological literature that reveals the sharpness of His mind.
Common Ground with Intelligent Design
On the other hand, Strandness, as a physician, finds common ground with Professor Behe and his arguments for the irreducible complexity of certain biological structures. Swamidass in the discussion on Brierley’s show says he believes “God was involved in the rise of humans but I don’t actually see any biochemical evidence of God’s design there.” Dr. Strandness does see that evidence, however.
I have to respectfully disagree with him because I treat my patients based on an irreducibly complex physiological template that I didn’t create, but which I dismiss at my own peril. I’m able to successfully practice medicine because my patients are fearfully and wonderfully made, not because they were naturally selected to survive.
Interestingly, a whole field of science called biomimetics has emerged that takes the superior design of irreducibly complex biological machines and tries to replicate them at the macro level. It appears that rather than dismissing design, science is beginning to imitate it as the sincerest form of divine flattery.
Swamidass made the case that biological machines are not machines in the traditional sense. However, I think he would get some push back from the biomimeticists who know that nature has given them a template for a better mousetrap, which, if successfully replicated, will inspire the world to beat a path to their door.
Richard Dawkins famously said that Charles Darwin made it possible for him to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist, but I found that [intelligent design] made it possible for me to be an intellectually fulfilled Christian.
For me, it was sad to observe that both Behe and Swamidass were comfortable with man evolving from some apelike creature, and yet both claim to be Christians. It is obvious from this belief that both do not believe in the inerrancy of God’s Word nor do they spend much time reading God’s Word. It is difficult to comprehend how Swamidass believes that man is made in God’s image and at the same time could have evolved from an ape.