Genesis and Darwinism: A Discourse

Monday’s blog post addressed evolutionism and creationism.  Funny coincidence.  Today I noticed the latest issue of Discovery magazine had come in the mail.  Lo and behold it includes a special section on Darwin and evolution.  Much to my toddler’s chagrin, I sat down and read.

Religion May Be Out of Style But . . .

Not surprisingly, the articles expressed an underlying bias:  Science is in, religion is out.  All the cool kids are turning to science for answers.  The unenlightened folks are still clinging to their religions.

We Can’t Escape the Questions

Here’s the thing. Science or no science, religion or no religion, one thing remains the same. Humans keep asking the same questions. We cannot escape them. They linger in our consciousness, begging to be answered. Why?

Why do we ask the same questions decade after decade, century after century, millennium after millennium? Survival of the fittest? He who comes up with the best answers wins?

The Discourse

I pulled some quotes from the articles in Discover magazine, and paired them with versus from Genesis. I hope you find the pairings as interesting as I do.

The following quotations are taken from the article “The Ascent of Darwin”, by Karen Wright, (Discover March 2009). Versus taken from Genesis are in italics.

“According to Helen Fisher and other proponents of evolutionary psychology, the theory of evolution helps them address questions that you otherwise would not be able to answer at all, such as ‘Why does aging exist?'”

And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” Genesis 3:22 NIV

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“Traditional economic models assume that people act exclusively in their self-interest… But cooperation and altruistic tendencies also show up routinely in studies of economic behavior.”

Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.” Genesis 4:6-7 NIV

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“The very existence of art begs to be explained in evolutionary terms, (David Sloan) Wilson says. Artistic expression has all the earmarks of a genetically evolved capacity: It appears early in life, is enjoyable for its own sake, exists across all cultures, and is mediated by ancient neural pathways in the brain.”

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness…” Genesis 1:1, Genesis 1:26 NIV

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The remaining quotes are taken from “The Discover Interview: Sean Carroll”, by Pamela Weintraub (Discover March 2009)

“A fundamental aspect of human existence has been to ask how we got here. Evolution is the big answer to that big question. Obviously there are alternative answers that have prevailed for a very long time, but evolution has replaced a supernatural explanation of human origins with a naturalistic one.”

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:1, Genesis 1:27

* * *

“One shocking discovery was the relationship between our eyes and bug eyes… We have now discovered that these eyes are formed by what is recognizable as the same gene.”

So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living and moving thing with which the water teems, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:21 NIV

God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:25 NIV

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“Prior to about 543 million years ago, you saw things like jellyfish and spongelike creatures, but you didn’t see bilateral creatures: worms and trilobites and things like this. Then in the Cambrian explosion large and complex animal forms erupted. These forms in the Cambrian represent a lot of the major divisions of the animal kingdom we see today.”

And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky.” Genesis 1:20 NIV

God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:25 NIV