Originally Broadcast April 26, 1997 Last Revised Feb. 22, 2001
INFINITY #10: Evolution: What do the Experts Sayby Daniel H. Harris, Ph.D.
I. The Questions.
What is the theory of evolution? Is the theory of evolution testable science? Do the fossils show that evolution has occurred? What if evolution has not occurred, what should we believe then? This INFINITY will answer these important questions.
II. Evolution Defined.
Evolution [in biology] is the idea that all complex life forms arose from simpler earlier life forms, and that the earliest life form(s) arose from non-living matter by natural law processes. Evolution, and the formation of life out of non-living matter, [called spontaneous generation], were beliefs popular among the ancient greek philosophers. And these beliefs were common in philosophic and scientific writings during the Roman Empire, the Middle Ages, and the Renaissance; long before the modern evolution controversey.
III. The Modern Theory of Evolution.
The modern theory of evolution clearly began with the two independent expositions of evolution presented separately by Charles Darwin and by Alfred R. Wallace, both published 1859. Both Darwin and Wallace speculated that all higher life forms arose from earlier forms by small changes, and that the first life form(s) arose from non-living matter. Darwin and Wallace supposed that in the struggle for life, the better adapted forms survived, and that these then further developed into varieties, which likewise struggled to survive. [see Illustration below] This violent struggle, was commonly called survival of the fittest, or dog eat dog competition. This deadly competition for scarce resources was the key to evolution, as envisioned by both Darwin and Wallace. Darwin euphemistically called this struggle "natural selection. "illustration from Darwin's "Origin"
[caption] Darwin's concept of variation with time, and of the natural selection of survivors, is shown here, as illustrated in his Origin of Species,(1859). The capital letters at the bottom represent different species of the same genus [closely similar]. Time progresses vertically from bottom to top. Each roman numeral at right represents 1000 or more generations. Darwin held that some of the varieties, such as varieties A & I, would produce greater numbers of new varieties than the others. After many generations these would give rise to new varieties such as a1, m1 and x1. And these new varieties would diverge in turn, and after many thousands of generations, the result being entirely new species such as a14, p14, and w14. The original species A & I, over this time would have lost out in the competition, and would be gone. Along the way, some species would not diverge and would remain essentially unchanged over time, some surviving and others dieing out.
IV. Evolution Supposes Change Over Great Spans of Time.
It is thus clear that evolution, as originally conceived by Darwin and Wallace, requires perhaps ten thousand to twenty thousand generations to make one new species, and that greater change takes much longer. If we are talking about types that reproduce every few years, then fifteen thousand generations may be on the order of 40,000 years, and many of these small transitions are needed to make major changes, such as the alleged transition from reptile to bird. Thus a hundred thousand to a million years is the shortest time needed to accomplish any substantial change.
So a core aspect of evolution theory is extremely slow change, over very long time periods. [Of course some living things, like insects and bacteria reproduce rapidly, so twenty thousand gerations may be only a few centuries or a few years. Yet contrary to the supposition of evolution these rapidly reproducing types, when studied in the fossil record, show little evidence of change over time.]
[Today there is much mention of Darwin, and little mention of Wallace, even though both men published essentially the same theory at the same time. This is undoubtedly because Wallace associated himself publicly with socialists, radicals, reformers, spirit mediums and mystics; which in Victorian England were outcasts, and because Wallace lent his name to radical causes, making Wallace an outcast. Thus landed gentleman Darwin and his aristocratic cohort, became acceptable spokesman for evolution, the popular fad of the day.]
V. Evolution is Not Empirical Science!
If evolution were empirical science, then it would be testable, and verifiable, and reproducable, in the laboratory. It is not! Dr. David Kitts, of the School of Geology and Geophysics, Univ. of Oklahoma, in the Journal Evolution vol. 28", Sept. 1974, p466 says: "Evolution at least in the sense that Darwin speaks of it, cannot be detected within the lifetime of a single observer." The late Prof. Dr. Theodosius Dobzhansky, then eminent Prof. of Zoology and Biology at Rockefeller Univ., in American Scientist vol. 45, Dec. 5, 1957, p388, admitted, that the application of the experimental method to the study of evolution, "is severely restricted before all else by the time intervals involved, which far exceed the lifetime of any human experimenter..."
These evolution advocates admit that evolution, if it ever occurred, happened far too slowly to be observed, and thus we can state that evolution is not directly testable. So evolutionists do not expect to ever find a laboratory demonstration of species to species evolution, nor is much effort spent seeking such evidence.
VI. The Essence of Darwin's Evolution is Very Slow Change.
The supporters of evolution suppose, that in the past, when there were no human experimenters watching, that evolution occurred, and that species changed into new species. Can this idea be tested?
In his book, The Origin of Species in Ch. 10, (on p 292-293 of the 1971 edition), Charles Darwin, imagined life forms as links in a great chain, from the simplest to the most complex.
Darwin was clear about evolution requiring very long ages; and many small steps, for each significant change. Darwin supposed that along the way, that many forms would become fossils, that are only part way through the evolutionary process of change. These are called intermediate or transitional forms. So there should be many fossils of intermediate or transitional forms, forms that are part way through the evolutionary process. Darwin writes:
"Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and serious objection which can be urged against the theory. The explanation lies, as I believe, in the extreme imperfection of the geological record."
So Darwin admits that many transitional forms should be found in the geologic record. In fact most fossils should be of transitional forms, with only a small minority of fossils life forms being stable over time in their environment. And Darwin admits that the theory's prediction of numerous transitional forms is not supported by the fossil record. The fossil record shows that the transitional forms aren't there. The fossil record shows mostly gaps not links. Rather than admit that the theory can't be right because the facts don't align with its predictions, Darwin devised an escape route. In the glaring light of this clash between the predicitons of the theory and the reality in the rocks, Darwin suggested that the fossil record is extremely incomplete, not recording many life forms that once existed. This was Darwin's escape. This was Darwin's hope, that the missing links would someday be found.
VII. The Missing Links Are Still Missing!
Today, after an additional hundred forty years of looking, the missing links are still missing. The abundance of the fossils in modern collections is truly staggering, with millions of fossil species recognized. There are incredible numbers of varieties within each major type. Yet there is not one agreed upon transitional form. And the once accepted evidences of evolution, like the horse series, are now known to be erroneous.
At the 1981 meeting of the British Assoc. for the Advancement of Science. Prof. Sir Edmund R. Leach, gave a lecture, published in the in Journal Nature, vol.293, Sept. 3, 1981, pp 19-20. Sir Edmund Leach said that the: "Missing links in the sequence of fossil evidence were a worry to Darwin. He felt sure they would eventually turn up, but they are still missing and seem likely to remain so. What we are to make of that fact is still open to debate..."
So Sir Edmund Leach says that the missing links are still missing, and will likely stay missing. Thus the main prediction of Darwin's theory remains opposed by the facts of the fossil record. And so we can say in light of present evidence that the fossil record can't be used to argue that evolution has ever occurred. [In spite of the fact that all the missing links remain missing, some experts still claim that the fossil record provides positive evidence for evolution. They insist that the evidence is there, because they see it, even if others can't, even though they can't show how the fossils support the theory. These experts say that only the fossils show evidence for evolution.]
VIII. Evolution is Not Shown By the Fossil Record!
The supporters of evolution admit that the fossil record doesn't show that evolution has ever occurred. Dr. David M. Raup, Curator of the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, in the museum's Bulletin, Jan. 1979, p22 wrote: "Darwin's theory of natural selection has always been closely linked to evidence from the fossils, and probably most people assume that fossils provide a very important part of the general argument that is made in favor of darwinian interpretations of the history of life. Unfortunately, this is not strictly true." So Dr. Raup admits that the fossils don't really show that evolution has ever occurred.
IX. Evolution Remakes Itself Into Punctuated Equilibrium.
Noted advocate of evolution Stephen Jay Gould, of Harvard, in the journal, Natural History vol.86, May, 1977, p14, said "we never see the process we profess to study." 9;This admission of the absolute lack of evidence that evolution has ever occurred; this admission that there are no transitional forms; is such a serious embarrassment, that some very prominent evolutionists, including Gould, have been forced to modify their view of what evolution is.
The advocates of this new theory of evolution now suppose that instead of continuous slow change, that evolution moves in fits and starts. They suppose that most of the time evolution moves very slowly, imperceptably [as they say evolution is now moving too slowly to be seen]; but they also suppose that on some rare occasions in the past, evolution moved very rapidly. They suppose that during brief and unusual intervals in the past, in special populations, evolution happened so quickly that it left no trace in the fossil record. They call the new theory "punctuated equilibrium." Equilibrium or balance, with little or no change for long time periods. The punctuations being the occasional sudden spurts of evolution. So when no one was watching, in rare circumstances, evolution happened so fast that it didn't leave a trace.
X. The Emperor's New Cloths, Evolution in New Garb.
This redifining of evolution into "puncutated equilibrium" is the ultimate emparassment to those who believe in real science, for real science is by definition repeatable, testable, and falsifyable. By this new formulation of evolution, there is no possible evidence that could ever be discovered which would overturn evolution. Evolution has thus been redefined so as to never be tested or overturned. We are told we must believe, just because we must, without any evidence. Evolution has become a child's game, a fable, a fairytale for adults. Evolution has become like the Emperor's New Cloths. We must believe because an authority tells to believe, even though anyone with eyes can see that The Emperor Is Naked.
XI. Evolution Becomes Story Telling.
Dr. Colin Patterson, Senior Paleontologist of the British Museum of Natural History; writes in a letter, dated April 10, 1979, to Luther D. Sunderland: "It is easy to make up stories of how one form gave rise to another, and to find reasons why stages should be favored by natural selection. But such stories are not part of science, for there is no way of putting them to the test."
So Dr. Patterson, of the British Museum, admits the idea that one life form can develop into another life form is not testable science, it's just story telling. Oxford Univ. Zoologist, Mark Ridley, in an article titled "Who Doubts Evolution?" in the magazine, New Scientist, vol. 90, June, 25, 1981, p831; says: 9;"No real evolutionist, whether gradualist or punctuationist, uses the fossil record as evidence in favor of the theory of evolution as opposed to special creation."
So we have seen that the experts admit that the fossil record provides zero evidence that evolution has ever occurred. And no one can show that evolution is occurring today. So it is clear that evolution is not science. Yet evolution is beleived without evidence, just a many other beliefs are held without evidence.
XII. Evolution: A Religious Belief System.
Evolution is surely an influential belief system, part of a naturalistic world view. Evolution is not empirical science, since evolution is not testable. Yet evoution is widely believed. Thus evolution must be a belief system, a religious viewpoint, held on the basis of faith only. Fellow of the Royal Society of London, H.S. Lipson, Prof. of Physics at Manchester, in Physics Bulletin vol. 31, 1980, p138, says regarding faith in evolution; "Evolution became in a sense a scientific religion; almost all scientists have accepted it and many are prepared to 'bend their observations' to fit in with it" Prof. Lipson admits that scientists bend their data to force agreement with evolution. Professor Whitten, Prof. of Genetics at the Univ. of Melbourne, Australia, in a 1980 speech, admitted that: "Biologists are simply naive when they talk about experiments designed to test the theory of evolution. It is not testable. They may happen to stumble across facts which would seem to conflict with its predictions. These facts will invariably be ignored and their discoverers will undoubtedly be deprived of continuing research grants."
These scientists say that if the facts are inconvenient, change them or ignore them. And it is clear that any scientist who dares to present facts in conflict with evolution will be cut off from research grant money.
Fellow of the Royal Society of London, L. Harrison Matthews, in his "Introduction" to the 1971 edition of Charles Darwin's book, The Origin of Species, says: "The fact of evolution is the backbone of biology, and biology is thus in the peculiar position of being a science founded on an unproved theory -- is it then science or a faith? Belief in the theory of evolution is thus exactly parallel to belief in special creation -- both are concepts which believers know to be true but neither, up to the present has been capable of proof."
Evolution is not science, it is a religious belief system, held by faith, and based on sheer speculation, without substantiation in fact.
XIII. Creation: the Alternative to Evolution.
So it appears that there is no logical, rational. or factual reason to accept the idea that evolution has ever occurred. But evolution is the only natural law mechanism for making life forms, the only alternative being creation. There are only two possibilities, creation or evolution, nothing else. And since the facts rule out evolution, we must consider creation. If the enormous variety of life forms were created, then the creator of them surely is a genius at design, with an eye for beauty, and sense of humor [consider the platypus]. This creator surely must have a purpose in this creation [see INFINTY #2]. If the creations of this creator are so fascinating, that scientists spend years studying them, then the creator of them must be far more fascinating still. Wouldn't it be fascinating to get to know this creator of life, the one who is life, the one who gives life?
XIV. The Character of the Creator.
This creator is surely the God who made the universe, and so exists both within and beyond the universe [see INFINITY #2] And since the creator made all the energy and order in the universe, the creator surely is energy and order beyond our understnding.
XV. Communicating With the Creator.
How do you suppose that this creator; who is energy, order, and life; who lives beyond and within space and time; would reveal the truth to created beings? The direct presence of this high order being in our space-time would likely destroy us, by the intensity of His radiance, so the creator can't show up on the street corner. Then what?
If the creator used symbols, like patterns in the stars, these could be easily misunderstood or even misrepresented. If the creator spoke to select individuals, why would anyone believe them? How would such communications be recognizable? Only if the creator spoke things beyond the knowledge of man, to be later discovered; only if the creator spoke of future events in detail; only if the creator showed signs and wonders; would these things confim the word spoken to select spokesmen, written and preserved by a select group of people. Only in that case would it be possible to know that the creator had spoken. And these are exactly the ways that the the creator has affirmed the truth of His word in the Holy Bible; affirmed with wonders such as the parting of the Red Sea, with the future detailed in the predicted rise and fall of civilizations, and with things then unknown to man, like the uncountable number of the stars. [If you doubt that this creator is the one who gave us the Holy Bible, then perhaps you should read the Holy Bible for yourself and check out the many distinctives of this most incredible creation, and along the way check out more of INFINITY and more of Dr. Truth.]
XVI. Communion With the Creator
Since the creator is so fascinating, so awesome, how can we not be open to communication with this creator? Why not open the door? I did, and the creator demonstated to me, beyond any question, that the Holy Bible is indeed a revelation by the creator and savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. If you have not yet come to know and serve this good creator God, now is a good time to do so. You can open the door to a communion with the good creator by following this link Click here for release to Christ.