Week 3 Writing Assignment: 9/8/11
Explain what difference it makes whether we were created or evolved.
To believe, or not to believe? Creation... or evolution? Whichever we believe will dictate how we will live our lives. But why is our origin, our past, so consequential to our present?
First, let’s examine each side, and see the striking differences in opinion, starting with evolution.
The theory of evolution was first proposed by scientist Charles Darwin in the 1800’s. Darwin believed in all of life having one common ancestor and that the different species were made by a process called natural selection. From basic chemicals and chemical reactions, simple life forms came into being which gradually became more and more complex as time went on. This process was said to take millions, even billions of years. As genetic mutations take place in an organism, the beneficial mutations are passed on to the offspring because they aid survival (this is called natural selection), until so many mutations have occurred that there is now an entirely different creature.
Belief in this theory takes an incredible amount of faith, as it assumes that life not only came from non-living substances, that even the most complex of life forms came into being all on accident. According to evolution, we are all really just the byproducts of some chemical reactions and mere chance.
As well, those who believe in this theory also accept the belief that our closest relatives (and our predecessors) are animals; the monkey being the closest “ancestor” of mankind. Note, this implies that, coming from animals, we are no greater than animals.
Now, on to the other side of the coin: Christianity, and the belief in Genesis. “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1) This is basis, the core of the creation belief is that there is an almighty creator who designed and created the world.
Nothing was by happenstance, rather, everything is in the hands of God. (There are some people who try to blend creation and evolution, but no true creationist or believer in Jesus should try and compromise between the two.)
Creationists (and Christians) believe God created the world and everything in it in six 24-hour days. The first day, day and night, darkness and light, came into being. The second day, the expanse in the midst of the waters was made, and the expanse was called heaven. The earth sprouted with all sorts of vegetation and plants on the third day, and on the fourth came the moon, stars, and sun to govern the day and night.
On the fifth day, the creatures of the waters and the air were created; birds and great sea creatures swarmed.
On the sixth day, God created first the living creatures of the earth, each after their kind: the beasts and cattle and creeping things. And then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” And God created Man, male and female, and blessed them.
“God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and morning, the sixth day.”
Seeing the world, and ourselves, as being deliberately designed radically changes how we see ourselves, and each other. Being under the evolutionary standpoint, living with the belief that you are nothing more than the result of chance, no greater than animals, then life has far less worth than it ought. There is no purpose for your life, so you might as well live as the verse from 1 Corinthians, as Paul said: “What advantageth it me, if the dead rise not? Let us eat and drink; for tomorrow we die.” (1 Cor 15:32)
No wonder so many live for themselves: if there is nothing after this life, then of course, you might as well spend your life well and live to the fullest... for yourself. No wonder so many lead meaningless lives that are wasted away as if they didn’t matter: if your origin is chemicals and monkeys, and you have no worth, why bother doing anything with your life? You’re just an accident anyway.
Then you turn and see the believer who places his faith in an infinite Creator who saw his life before the earth was even formed, who has a plan for his life and has an eternal home prepared for him after death: is there any greater reason to be able to raise your head and walk in victory? The person who believes in the great Creator can see beyond this life, and lives not for the temporary but the eternal. And that life is a marked change from the one who believes his ancestors were monkeys and soup.
Many may not even realize how the things they believe affect how they lead their lives, and yet it is a crucial part of life. For the difference between being created or evolved
determines the way you see yourself, others, the world around you... and how you should live your life.