Saturday, August 11, 2007

Where Were We? Creationism, Evolution and Intelligent Design

(This article first ran in July of 2006)

Where Were We? Creationism, Evolution and Intelligent Design


I’m going to gingerly dip my toe into the stream of the debate on Creationism, Evolution and Intelligent Design. This foray of mine is “chancey” and there is no hope of satisfying the majority of readers… so… I’ won’t try.

It will come as no surprise to regular readers of this blog that I might, and do, have my own ideas about how man came to be on this planet and how the planet came to be, in the first place.

I cannot deny evolution. I have seen it at work and continue to see it working everyday. I cannot deny creationism, because I happen to believe that God did create this planet and everything upon it.

Intelligent Design?? Well, I see little difference between Intelligent Design and Creationism. There may be… I just don’t see it.

Along about the time I was in grammar school, I came to believe that, as the scriptures point out, a day is as a thousand years to God. With that in mind, it was easy enough for me to consider the teachings of evolution and discount that portion I did not buy into. If the Earth, and everything on it, was created in six days as Genesis says, then could that not just as easily have been six thousand years, or even six eons? Maybe not. But, that is my way of justifying those two stories, if you will, of creation.

You know, the way I see it…if God chose evolution as His way to create man, and the animals, and the planet itself… that would be perfectly OK with me.

I am one of those weirdoes who accepts nothing at face value. I will consider it, investigate it, whatever it is and then make a decision based on my own conclusions. Basically, I question everything.

A dear friend of mine, a minister, once told me that should I precede him in death, that upon his arrival in heaven he would have no trouble finding me, because I would be the one with my hand raised wanting to ask God a question! There is more truth to that than I am comfortable with.

Look, I am no divinity student, nor a minister. Only a subscriber to the Christian faith who makes an attempt at understanding God’s world and dealing with it, the best I can, with the understanding, with which, God has blessed me. Even with a lifetime of scripture study, it is still difficult to maintain one’s faith as a Christian. Martin Luther once said: “Of Course it is difficult. If it wasn’t, everybody would be doing it.” He was correct, of course.

First… we humans make a HUGE mistake when we attempt to examine the Bible as a “history book”. It is not. We cannot use the Bible to prove the creation story. If one believes the six-day story then one must accept it on faith. Faith, as Saint Paul said, is the belief in things not seen (Hebrews 11:1). On the other hand science deals in things “seen”. You cannot successfully combine these two. Evolution is a scientific theory.

I happen to believe that God is the creator and He did create the earth and everything upon it and gave it into man’s care. He made man the steward of His gift. He also told mankind to use it… and have dominion over all He had created for us. He left it in our care.

Granted, we have been lousy stewards. Even as badly as we have treated this earth, I cannot bring myself to buy into the theory that man will ultimately destroy the earth. I simply do not believe that man is capable of destroying something God created. I believe it to be the height of arrogance to believe that we can.

There is a passage in the Book of Job (Old Testament, by the way.) Which rattles man’s arrogance. So as we argue back and forth about Creationism vs. Evolution or any other theory, might I suggest that we keep the following passage in mind:

Job 38:

Then Yahweh answered Job out of the whirlwind, 38:2 "Who is this who darkens counsel By words without knowledge? 38:3 Brace yourself like a man, For I will question you, then you answer me! 38:4 "Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if you have understanding. 38:5 Who determined the measures of it, if you know? Or who stretched the line on it? 38:6 Whereupon were the foundations of it fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, 38:7 When the morning stars sang together, And all the sons of God shouted for joy?

The point of God’s questioning of Job drives home the point… we don’t know! We were not there!

So, as we ponder our origins on this earth and, indeed, the origin of the earth itself, we would do well to harken to God’s questioning of Job. Indeed, where were we when He laid the foundations of the earth?

Personally, I choose to believe that God is our creator and… evolution may, indeed, be His way of “recreating” us over, and over, and over, so that His creation survives, and thrives, in this garden we call Earth.


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