Evolution in Retreat
FOR over a century, many scientists have claimed that all life evolved. They have said that life originated by itself, moved up to the plant and animal stage, and then progressed through apelike beasts to man.
All during this time, these scientists have confidently hunted for evidence to support such claims. Quite a few men of science, as well as others, hoped that the evidence would destroy belief in a God of creation.
However, in recent years the evidence has done the opposite! It has shattered the basis for belief in the theory of evolution, so that many honest people, including a number of scientists, no longer accept this theory. Those who continue to promote evolution have been forced to retreat from some long-held beliefs.
Commenting on this situation, the New York Times reported: “The study of evolution has undergone a major change in the last 10 years, with the principles of evolution, as laid down by Darwin and others, being challenged and new theories being proposed. The field is in an uproar.”
INVESTIGATING THE EVIDENCE
Recently a number of investigators have examined the evidence impartially. They have expressed amazement at what they have found.
Norman Macbeth, a Harvard-trained lawyer, decided to approach the matter as if he were arguing a court case. He compiled evidence for and against evolution. After many years of intensive research he concluded that the evidence against evolution was so strong that, as he said, “no theory at all may be preferable to the existing one.”
Macbeth further stated: “In the field of evolution most explanations are not good. As a matter of fact, they hardly qualify as explanations at all; they are suggestions, hunches, pipe dreams, hardly worthy of being called hypotheses.” His reaction to a typical book supporting evolution was: “If I had to oppose that man in court I could get his case thrown out.”
An editor of The Washington Monthly, Tom Bethell, made a similar investigation. He was amazed to find so much confusion and debate among evolutionists. He said: “It is surprising that so little of [the debate] has leaked out, because it seems to have been one of the most important academic debates of the 1960s, and as I see it the conclusion is pretty staggering: Darwin’s theory, I believe, is on the verge of collapse.”
Mr. Bethell noted: “Darwin, I suggest, is in the process of being discarded, but perhaps in deference to the venerable old gentleman . . . it is being done as discreetly and gently as possible, with a minimum of publicity.”
How do evolutionists react to this? F. Appleton, writing in Weekend magazine, says: “We admit there are gaping holes in the evidence for evolution. . . . Even for an advanced scientist, there is a point where explanations become threadbare and you have to admit you don’t really know.” He added: “Yes, evolution is only a theory. Believing in evolution, then, is an act of faith.”
The “gaping holes” have widened with the passing of time. Evidence has poured in about heredity, cell structure, DNA, the complexity of living things, breeding experiments, as well as the fossil record. From all this evidence it has become more and more obvious to impartial, honest observers that the facts overwhelmingly support creation, not evolution.
BASIC IDEA UPSET
One of the fundamental beliefs of evolution, in fact, a main foundation, now is being upset. This is the long-accepted theory of how evolution was supposed to have taken place—its “mechanism.”
Advocates of evolution believed that it took place by small, advantageous changes in living things. These changes presumably enabled those living things to survive better. Their offspring supposedly continued having other beneficial changes over millions of years. Allegedly, this resulted in the gradual evolving of all insects, plants, animals and man.
Among scientists, this idea of ‘survival of the fittest’ is called ‘natural selection.’ The phrase was intended to mean that “nature” supposedly “selected” the “fittest” types for survival, the “weaker” becoming extinct.
Why is this fundamental belief challenged now? Because, after decades of experimenting with living things and studying the fossil record, what should have been an obvious conclusion has finally dawned on many scientists. It is this: because a type of plant or animal may survive better, this really has nothing at all to do with how it got here in the first place. If one type of fox survives better than another type of fox, it does not explain how either fox originated. “Survival” does not explain “arrival.” Nor does mere survival change the fox into a different animal.
Breeders have discovered, after decades of experimenting, that no matter how intensively they breed plants or animals, they never develop a new or totally different kind. They may cause changes in size, color or other characteristics. But a cow always remains a cow; a grape always remains a grape; a fly always remains a fly.
It now has been definitely established that beyond a certain limited degree of variation from what is normal, living things cannot be changed further without either making them sterile or killing them. Why? Because there is a law that locks them into being what they are.
“ACCORDING TO THEIR KINDS”
God has built into all living things a law to keep basic types separated. That law is what the Bible calls “according to their kinds.”
An example of this is Genesis 1:24, which states: “God went on to say: ‘Let the earth put forth living souls according to their kinds, domestic animal and moving animal and wild beast of the earth according to its kind.’” This is also true regarding all plants, insects, birds, fish and humans.
However, the hereditary makeup of living things does include the potential of variety within basic kinds, which makes life more interesting. But, just as the breeders have discovered, while there may be many varieties of cats, for example, all the varieties forever stay cats and can interbreed only among themselves. The same is true regarding all other basic kinds.
Harold Coffin, invertebrate zoologist from the University of California, states: “Obviously much adaptation has occurred, but has this adaptive change actually caused evolutionary progression from one major category to another? The evidence from science does not support this kind of change.”
FOSSIL EVIDENCE BACKFIRES
The evidence from fossils, the remains of living things dug up from the earth, also has backfired on evolutionists. They had hoped that after more than a century of searching, they would have found numerous “in-between” fossils linking the various types of once-living things together in an unbroken chain. But the abundant fossil evidence now available has completely shattered this hope.
Zoologist Coffin says: “The fossils, evidences of the life of the past, constitute the ultimate and final court of appeal, because the fossil record is the only authentic history of life available to science.” And what does the record show? Does it agree with evolution? Coffin answers: “It does not. . . . It tells us that plants and animals were created in their basic forms. The basic facts of the fossil record support creation, not evolution.”
Dr. D. B. Gower, biochemist from London University, also confirms that ‘the story of the fossils agrees with the account of Genesis (in the Bible).’ He says that ‘in the oldest rocks we do not find a series of fossils covering the gradual changes from the most primitive creatures to developed forms, but, rather, in the oldest rocks, developed species suddenly appeared.’ He also observed that between every major type of plant and animal ‘there was a complete absence of intermediate fossils.’
RETREAT ON MAN’S HISTORY
Recent discoveries of human fossils have caused a retreat, also, regarding man’s supposed evolutionary history. These discoveries have made a shambles of the evolutionary “tree,” the hypothetical lineup of apelike creatures assertedly leading to man.
Because of these recent discoveries, the Boston Globe declared: “Every single book on anthropology, every article on the evolution of man, every drawing of man’s family tree will have to be junked. . . . It also means we have had our ancestors mixed up.”
What has caused this retreat? The discovery of modern-type human fossils believed to be older than the supposed “apemen” from which they were alleged to have come. One of these “apelike” creatures, labeled Australopithecus by scientists, was once even hailed by some as being the missing link between humans and apes.
But according to scientific sources the new evidence has shown this to be impossible. The New York Times reported: “The new fossils provided conclusive evidence that Australopithecus, an extinct species once thought to be transitional between ape and man, was, instead, a contemporary of early man that became an evolutionary dead end.”
The truth is that humans, too, were created ‘according to their kind.’ That is why no “links” have ever been found between man and beast. It is also why none ever will be found. The huge gap will always remain, put there by the Creator to keep man and beast distinct.
Anthony Ostric, a professor of anthropology from Indiana, told a congress of scientists that the evidence shows that man has remained essentially the same since he first appeared. He declared: “It is not possible to see how biological, social or cultural forces or processes could transform any kind of prehuman anthropoid or ‘near-man’ into homo sapiens.” He observed that man’s unique biophysical and socio cultural nature appears to represent “an unbridgeable abyss separating him from all other animals.”
Plainly, the evidence accumulated over many decades has forced evolution to retreat on many fronts. Facing the facts honestly leads to only one conclusion. As the Bible long ago declared: “Know that Jehovah is God. It is he that has made us, and not we ourselves.”—Ps. 100:3.
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If one type of fox survives better than another type of fox, it does not change that fox into a different animal
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“Plants and animals . . . produce their young from their own bodies and in no other way.” “All life derives from preceding life, . . . the parent organism and its offspring are of the same kind.”—“Biology for You,” p. 468; “The Encyclopedia Americana,” 1956, Vol. 3, p. 721