Darwinism and Christmas

Article by

Founder & Teacher, desiringGod.org

Side by side on my front porch were the newspaper article carrying one world view and a magazine carrying the other. The article was in World magazine, and it quoted Philip Johnson, law professor at Berkeley, as saying,

If we say, “Did a bacterium by gradual steps turn into a lobster or an insect or a worm…” most people ask, “Is it possible God could have done it that way?” That’s a boring question. Of course, it is possible. But if God is in the picture at all, then what’s the evidence that he did change a bacterium by gradual steps into a worm? There’s no evidence. It is not recorded in the fossils. It’s not testable in the laboratories. It’s something that if anybody believes it, they believe it on faith, faith in evolution. (World, Nov. 22, 1997, p. 13)

Johnson has been leading a remarkable crusade that specializes in Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds, which is the title of his newest book from InterVarsity Press. His first book on evolution was Darwin on Trial. As a law professor, Johnson is an expert in handling evidence. Though he is a Christian, he does not argue from the Bible. He simply argues from the evidence that evolutionists use, which he shows will not bear the weight of the worldview put on it. Accepting Darwinism, or naturalistic evolution, is a leap of faith.

The same day that I read World magazine, I also read in the Star Tribune an incredibly forthright statement of Darwinian faith by Renee Twombly. Here is her unvarnished affirmation of faith:

As a human do you feel, shall we say, a bit superior to everything else breathing around you? You can’t help it if Homo sapiens can move mountains while ants prefer little hills, right? Well, truth is that you are just a ticktock in the time line of evolution on Earth, a little twig in the developmental tree of life… Biological and environmental adaptation along with the ability of a new species of offspring to survive and thrive determines whether or not that species lives or dies.

Evolution, in this view, is not a predictable process, but more the luck of the draw without a higher guiding principle. Life is not inherently progressive, moving step by step up a ladder of improvement to reach a perfect being, which many assume is human. Moral of the story? Check back after the next evolutionary ticktock. (November 26, 1997, p. A16, emphasis added)

Not everybody has the time or ability to grapple with all the evidence as Philip Johnson does. God knows that. Therefore he designed the world so that “since the creation of the world his invisible attributes, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they [those who deny it] are without excuse” (Romans 1:20). Evolutionists will give an account as to whether the leap of faith they make from bacteria to lobsters is as reasonable as the step of faith Christians make from the universe to God.

In addition to the universe, there is Jesus Christ. Ms. Twombly, with a casual stroke of the keys, claims that the difference between Jesus and an ant is a ticktock on the clock of evolution. That is a very big and very dangerous claim. When humans celebrate Christmas, it is essentially the same as ants doing some instinctual dance. It’s just a matter of matter and energy and time. Nothing essential has changed.

Please realize what is going on here. With the wave of an imaginary wand, the Darwinist sweeps God out of heaven and Christ off the earth. Then they go to the classrooms of the nation and say, “Respect each other and do good,” and wonder why kids kill each other like animals.

To such “believers” in evolution I will happily say: the Jesus of the New Testament is less explainable on Darwinian assumptions than the origins of species are on biblical assumptions. The universe and the Christ of Christmas reveal the God who creates the cosmos and redeems from sin. If you do not see this, keep looking. The link is more accessible than the one between ant and human.

For the supremacy of our Creator and Redeemer God at Christmas,

Pastor John