Re: Evolution's Imperative (was Def'n of Science)

Vernon Jenkins (
Tue, 09 Mar 1999 22:47:02 +0000

Greetings Kevin:

In response to your recent posting let me first address your closing
> I have to admit that I'm not sure what your point is here. Could you
> elaborate?

I had written:

> >We read in 1Kings 18, verse 21, "And Elijah came unto all the people,
> >and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God,
> >follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him
> >not a word."

What Richard Dawkins and I have in common is that, confronted with the
Mt.Carmel challenge (though he might not put it that way!), we have each
made a choice: Dawkins for 'Baal' and I, for the living God. Theistic
evolutionists, on the other hand, are - in the words of the AV - 'halted
between two opinions'. They stand guilty of attempting to 'have it both
ways'; to serve two powerful masters whose agendas concerning themselves
are poles apart! The Lord himself warned us about such a situation

You will, no doubt, question my reference to evolution as a 'powerful
master'. Yet it has a spiritual dimension that few, apparently,
recognize. Speaking to the community of believers at Corinth, Paul says,
"...we are not ignorant of his (Satan's) devices." (2Co.2:11). But what
about us today? Are we alive to such realities? Or are we now so used to
shutting our 'evolution-inspired-higher-critical' eyes and ears to the
words of Holy Scripture that these things are no longer of any concern?
Have the admonitions of Eph.6:10-18 and the prophecy of 2Th.2 become,
for us, so much hot air? Are you not able to see that we can so easily
become Satan's accomplices? I can't see you as one who believes that the
laboratory door really does shut out the supernatural.

It is instructive to consider this remarkable theory more closely, and
perhaps agree, right away, that there is nothing else quite like it in
the whole of the history of science. Following Loren's sound advice, let
me first define what I understand by the term 'evolution'.

Evolution is "the cumulative change in the characteristics of
populations of organisms over succeeding generations, resulting in
species totally different from remote ancestors (Chambers) - whether by
chance, or by divine intent."

Here are some of its characteristics:

(1) It gives succour to the atheist (not in itself a crime, but hardly a
good selling-point for the Christian!)

(2) In attacking the early chapters of Genesis (which Jesus obviously
believed), it raises questions about the Lord's ministry and directly
challenges the Bible's claim to be a work of God - specifically intended
to instruct man in ways that are righteous and acceptable to Him.

(3) Its social consequences are invariably bad. This observation should
put us in mind of our Lord's warning, " their fruits ye shall know
them.... every tree that fails to bring forth good fruit is cut down,
and cast into the fire." (Mt.7:20, 19). [For those who would remind us
that the church also has 'bloody hands', let me say this: where the
teachings of Christ have been properly applied, the fruit has invariably
been wholesome and good, and has resulted in great blessing to that
society. On the other hand, evolution with its slogan, 'survival of the
fittest', has invited some of the worst excesses the world has ever

(4) Among theories, it is unique in being the only one that cannot be
allowed to fail! Kevin, you list several events which, were any to
occur, should kill evolution stone dead. We could list a myriad more,
but the practicalities are that these falsification scenarios - which in
your view support the scientific legitimacy of the theory - are not
worth the paper they are written on; here's why: included among your
ranks are the likes of Dawkins and Crick for whom this doctrine is
essential; is it likely that they would ever wave the white flag? If the
offending data could not be suppressed then it would be explained away
as a 'creationist plant'. And if these, and other, strategies were to
fail, there - waiting in the wings - would be the ultimate,
unanswerable, defence, viz that the offending manifestations are clearly
attributable to the activities of some unknown exraterrestial beings who
had visited this planet in times past! So, you see, the universal
expectations of evolution (clearly unfalsifiable!) create a caudal
safety-net. All very neat really, and rendering your suggested tests of
falsifiability, illusory!.

You then said:
> Like most prophets Jeremiah was exaggerating for effect. But in the sense
> that man is selfish and prefers to follow his own way rather than the way of
> God, Jeremiah was certainly correct.

I don't know where you get this idea from. Is God 'exaggerating for
effect' when, immediately following the flood, he muses "...I will not
again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of
man's heart is evil from his youth;..." (Gn.8:21)?

> Even so, what does this have to do with evolution?

Amongst other things, I believe it explains why this theory is
masqueraded as science, and why it is presented as fact to young minds -
despite the lack of evidence.

Thanks for forcing me to 'dig deep'.