Alright, before all of you think I’ve been sucked in by the recent Bill Nye vs. John (I mean Ken) Ham, I did not watch it. I like Bill Nye and grew up watching him, though I was a little mad he replaced Square One (which featured Mathnet). And Mr. Ham and I may have a very few things in common, but a literal interpretation of Genesis and a 6000 year old Earth is not one of them.
I’m personally very comfortable with the idea that evolution was part of the creation process, one kicked off by an intelligent designer (one might even say programmer since evolutionary systems have been modeled in programming).
But I’m not here to talk about that, because Christians and non-Christians alike are missing the point when they argue about creationism.
Let me speak to Christians for a couple minutes (but if you’re not one please feel free to listen in):
1) The most central point in our faith is not God creating the world in six days. It’s Jesus Christ! Christ and his death for our sins is the single most important part of our faith, and it has nothing to do with this debate. His resurrection and promise of return is hopeful, and a sign that he conquered death.
2) This debate makes us look dumb. And we’re not. But it doesn’t help to contradict scientific evidence. Is evolution fully explained? No. But let’s not lean too heavily on the whole “it’s a theory” thing, because that misunderstands what the scientific community means when they say theory. It’s the whole “this all happened randomly” thing, especially when everything else in the world seems to tend to entropy that gets me questioning some aspects of evolution. But the process itself? Not so much. You can be a scientist and still believe there are things out there you can’t understand, like heaven and the price of sin, or exactly how random mutations work or occur.
3) There are so many other valuable things we could be (and some of us are) doing! Let’s reach out a hand to those in our community, love in a Christ like way. Our church has a food-pantry every Saturday which serves 75 households (we’re a 60 person church).
Okay everybody, lean in, cause this one’s important:
4) It doesn’t affect your day-to-day lives. For Christians, how is believing in a literal six day creation helping you to live in a Christ-like way? For non-Christians, does knowing we evolved from monkeys and lesser creatures affect any of your daily choices? Who to date, what to eat, etc?
5) But what about thinking critically? Absolutely. But, I’d be more of a fan if we taught exactly what evolution can prove and show than what I’ll call for lack of a better term the “evolutionary belief system”. I’ll admit, we have not scientifically proven that a creator was involved in the evolutionary process, but we have not dis-proven it either. When it comes to things like “how or why does evolution work?” “how do simpler things reorganize into more complex things”, random mutation is kind of a lousy answer. What exactly causes mutations? Answering “we don’t fully know” here is an acceptable (and preferable) way to go.
6) We’re not changing anybody’s mind anyway. We can talk at each other all we like (apparently Ham and Nye went on for nearly two hours before the Q and A), but pretty much everybody’s leaving that room believing what they did before. You know what I’d like to see? I’d like to see a Christian who believes in evolution argue with a Christian who doesn’t. That would be a conversation I haven’t seen, and one that might get us to look better, and get the outside world to realize we don’t all think the same way about this. But really, I’d like to just move on.
So let’s have the debate that really matters: Which is better Star Trek or Star Wars? Please cite your sources.
The correct answer is Babylon 5.