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Evolution and the character of God

Last month I was talking with a friend who believes God used evolution to bring about life on earth. He believes that Genesis is fully compatible with the theory of evolution, and that enormous epochs of time transpired during the early chapters of Genesis. He describes himself as a believer in Intelligent Design—not six-day creation.

To be perfectly honest, I wish evolution were somehow compatible with the Bible. I wish I could talk to evolution-believing scientists and say, “Yep, that’s what the Bible says! Isn’t it amazing that modern scientific ideas line up so well with the Word of God?”

But, as countless people on this site have written, it is very difficult to fit the theory of evolution into a straightforward reading of the Bible. Even putting aside the issue of time, we see that the order of when things were created according to the Bible is distinctly different than what secular scientists say. (For example, we read in Genesis that the earth was created before the sun and that birds were created before reptiles.)

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Furthermore, we should ask ourselves, is the theory of evolution compatible with what we know of the character of God? Think about a fish flopping around on the beach, gasping for air, trying to learn how to breathe air. Or the savage survival of the fittest struggle that supposedly propelled evolution forward. Can you imagine God looking down and declaring, “Yes, this is good, this is how I designed it”? (“Is Genesis History?”, which came out in theaters last week, effectively drove this point home.) Nature is indeed red in tooth and claw, but is that how God originally established it? Or was the original creation horribly corrupted by sin?

Again, I sometimes wish evolution were compatible with a straightforward reading of God’s Word and what we know about the character of God. And, although many well-meaning Christians believe it is, I remain unconvinced.

Written by Garrett Haley

Garrett works at Coldwell Banker Commercial in Lubbock, TX. During his free time he enjoys reading, writing, traveling, and pondering life’s deep questions. On weekends he can often be found mowing lawns or playing soccer. He also serves as a deacon at FreeWay Bible Chapel.

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