Dr. S. Lewis Johnson provides an in depth comparison of the creation account and the basic assumptions of evolutionary theory.
[Message] Our subject tonight is “Man and His Origin, or The Creation of Man and the Problem of Evolution.” And we are going to turn to Genesis chapter 1, verse 26 through verse 28 and then read chapter 2, verse 7 for our Scripture reading. Genesis chapter 1, verse 26 through verse 28:
“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 sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’ And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. And God blessed them; and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.’”
And now chapter 2, verse 7, And Moses writes,
“Then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”
As you probably know the term being is the translation of the Hebrew word nephesh, which means soul. But just as in English, soul in Hebrew, and soul in Greek, has different meanings. It may mean being. It may the immaterial part of the man that we call soul. It may simply refer to a person. And so this is a legitimate translation and became a living being.
Now, this is the second in our series of studies in Anthropology, or the Study of Man. And for those of you who were not here last Tuesday night, we made these points. Perhaps you were here, and you still did not get the points. [Laughter] Well, I’m sure that the fault was mine because we went over a lot of territory. And if we have difficulty tonight, that probably is the same — that will be the same reason.
These are the points that I made. First, our age, in spite of “fantastic progress,” (I have that in quotation marks in my notes), is in a crisis of anthropology. Man is a mystery to himself. Now, biblically speaking, he is lost. And I think that in the hearts of many men who do not know anything about biblical truth, that word might be a good description of what they feel in this present day in which we live.
The next point I made was that classical men looked at man from the standpoint of his rational faculties, his noose or his mind. The mind was an immortal principle. And ordinarily they thought of the mind, the immortal or divine principle, as dwelling in a sinful body.
And so there was this mind-body dualism that existed in ancient Greek thought. It is probably the background of 1 Corinthians 15 in part. That is, the Corinthians were subject to and or were inclined to accept a doctrine that denied the resurrection of the body, for they had been trained in Greek thought, thought that the body was sinful. And the idea of reentering their body was, to them, a naturally distasteful thought. So the apostle tries to point out to them in that great chapter that Jesus Christ’s resurrection is the assurance of the resurrection of men. And of course, if Jesus Christ is resurrected in bodily form, then we need not fear reentering a sinful body.
The third point that I made was that medieval man saw man as fallen but as losing only God’s likeness in his fall. He had received a kind of supernatural gift which enabled him to keep his lusts in check after he had been created, according to medieval thought; and that was man’s righteousness. And when man fell — the Roman Catholic Church of course, the leading source of medieval theological thought, believed that man did not lose the image of God, but they lost the likeness of God or that original righteousness, that supernatural gift, which enabled him to keep a sense of check. Along with this, they believed that the reason and the will of man was virtually unchanged by the Fall.
Consequently, the reason and will of man were able to do things that would please God, providing the right decisions were made, even though man had fallen. Consequently, if you were to sum up medieval thought concerning man, they believed that man was fallen, but they would have defined that fall as a weakening of man and not a depravity of man.
The Reformers, the next point we made, while suffering or while differing slightly from the image of God and man, returned to the biblical doctrine of creation; man was created. Second, man fell and when he fell, not only did his mind fall, but also — or not only did this fall touch part of the man — but it touched the whole of the man and even his will was touched by the Fall. And, consequently, since the Fall, his will is in bondage. The Reformers also believe that the work of salvation was the work of renewal through redemption into the likeness and image of God. So, the Reformers believe that the will was in bondage. So the idea of no free will is not a modern doctrine. It really is an ancient doctrine, and the Reformers are responsible for bringing it again to light in the 16th Century.
Modern man, the next point we made, has been influenced by Humanism. And as a result of his influence by Humanism, he has rejected sin as central to man’s personality and, consequently, that I suggested is the reason why the Gospel does not make any dent in the mind and hearts of much of modern man. Because since he does not regard himself as basically sinful, the idea of needing salvation from sin is to him, a rather irrelevant idea. That is why, when you speak to people concerning the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it is often so difficult to convince them of their need, for they have basically a philosophy of the nature of man which has come from Humanism through the Renaissance. And as a result, they do not sense any need for the Gospel that you are proclaiming. They have also said, swallowed the belief in the idea of progress.
Now, much of contemporary theology is abandoning that belief and the idea of progress, but it is not yet seeped down to the common man. And the common man — by that I mean not simply you and me, but the type of man that writes in our newspapers, the type of man that writes popular literature, that type of literature still is affected by a basic belief in the goodness of man and in the idea of human progress. And, of course, it also appears in some of our great philosophers.
The next point I made was that the entire plan of redemption is the restoration of man to the image of God. In other words, the work of Jesus Christ is designed to restore us to that which man lost in the fall, the image and likeness of God.
And the final point I tried to make, was by losing his sense of God and of himself, man is in the grip of angst, or anxiety, despair. And his misery is the misery of a dethroned king, using the clause or phrase that comes from Pascal, because God created man to rule and he is unable to exercise that for which he was created, rule, dominion. As a result, he feels out of harmony with his circumstances and in despair and concern. He does not understand it. He often does not understand why, but this explains a great deal of the philosophy of our day.
Well, that is what we have gone over rather rapidly to this point.
Now, what does God say about man. In the final analysis for us who are Christians, this is the important thing, but I think that it is such a coherent thing that anybody who is a human being should be interested in what the Bible has to say about man. If it does seem to meet the circumstances, at least it ought to create some interest in the things of the word of God. Unquestionably, the Bible sets forth man in the same way in which the Reformers sought to describe man. That is, the Bible sets forth man is created by God in the image of God. It also states that man fell. And for that, the work of redemption through Jesus Christ is designed to offer to men universally, restoration to the likeness and the image of God through Jesus Christ. Is it true? What about evolution?
Evolution is probably Humanisms’ most illustrious product. And not a single person in this auditorium has been uninfluenced by evolution. Now, let me preface what I am going to say tonight by a word of modesty. Now, you do not often hear that from me, and so consequently you should pay a little attention to this. What I am going to say to you tonight is not said to you as a scientist, for I am not a scientist. As a matter of fact, I know very little about science, to be perfectly honest with you. I guess to be perfectly honest with you, I would say I don’t know anything about science. So what I’m going to say to you is what I, as simply a person such as you are, think about some of the things that have to do with evolution. You will probably be able to find some very, very sad instances of logic in what I am going to say. You probably will notice, first of all, that there are great gaps in my knowledge, and you will probably notice some other things that I have no idea about, but what I am going to say to you is just what I myself feel about evolution in the light of the teaching of the word of God.
Three years ago — not quite three years ago in our daily paper, The Times Herald, there was an interesting editorial. And I would like to read it because I think this illustrates two things. It illustrates, first of all, that I am not the only ignorant person. And secondly, it illustrates that the idea that evolution is a fact, is not simply the idea of a totally ignorant 20th Century citizen, but it is the idea that many well-educated people have. One of the editorial writers of the Times Herald wrote these words:
“Shades of Clarence Darrow and the old Williams Jennings Bryan: The evolution controversy still rages fiercely. Forty-four years after the epic courtroom battle in which Darrow made mincemeat of Brown’s stone-age convictions about the descent of man, a group of Texans is seeking to have the state textbook committee modify the language of its biology textbooks to make evolution appear less a fact than a theory.
(That is a very interesting thing. In other words he wants it to appear a fact, not simply a theory. Tells me a great deal about his own scientific methodology.) One would hope the time was long since past when fundamentalist notions about mankind’s origins could still be rammed down the throats of Texas school children. Yet at least one publisher’s representative concedes he feels the text can be altered to make it seem as though the truth of evolution is no more than the author’s opinion. For all the sincerity of their convictions, for all their profound and heartfelt Christianity, modern day fundamentalists have no business seeking to edit the content of textbooks to make them conform with mistaken theories of creation disproved over and over by science. What the fundamentalists fail to appreciate is that belief in evolution, as it has been painstakingly worked out since Charles Darwin, need in no way undercut religious faith. Even if it is impossible to credit now days, the creation story of Genesis, it is far from impossible to venerate almighty God as the author of the evolution process. God’s power and might are not an issue, only the means by which they were expressed in the making of the world. Holes there may be in our understanding of evolution, just as a textbook committee witness asserts that there are, but evolution is as close to being fact as any explanation of an historical process could ever be. And a good deal closer to fact for that matter than Genesis. It is time for fundamentalists to stop imposing their personal views on our state textbooks. They are already nearer to making monkeys of themselves than the evolutionists are to making monkeys of their ancestors.”
That’s an interesting statement. And this is a recent statement by the assistant professor of the Institute for Enzyme Research at the University of Wisconsin.
“From a scientific point of view, evolution may have been a plausible hypothesis in Darwin’s day, but it is now become untenable as a result of fairly recent developments in molecular biology.”
That was written about a year and a half after the esteemed editor wrote his article in the Dallas Times Herald. This is another statement in connection with this. This appeared in another newspaper.
“One of the hallmarks of our age,” the editorial writer says, “is the rapid erosion of ideas and viewpoints once regarded as scientifically established. Take for example, the idea of evolution. We can remember when anyone questioning Darwinian concepts was immediately dismissed as a Bible-thumping fundamentalist incapable of genuine intellectual discourse.” By the way, this was just a few months after the Dallas Times Herald reporter wrote what he wrote. And this man — this editorial writer looks upon that as something that happened in ages past. “Now we find Professor John M. Moore of Michigan State University, a naturalist, telling the Augusta American Association for the advancement of science, that Darwin’s views are, quote, “more illogical than biological,” unquote and in fact, quote, “simply don’t make sense in view of today’s knowledge”. And then he has a word about William Jennings Brown, too. He says, “William Jennings Brown must be whirling in his grave or maybe he’s just chortling.”
Now, what about the problem of evolution? Well, I think we can see at least that we should look at evolution as a theory. And we should look at it honestly, and we should also look at the biblical account of creation as a theory. And we should seek to honestly seek to evaluate it.
Now, I had a little difficulty putting this outline on the board because I’m having difficulty writing with these pencils, and so some of its in green and some of its in blue, but it all comes out black there, and I hope you can see.
Roman I. The theory of evolution; Capital A. The definition of evolution; Capital B. The evidence for evolution and from comparative anatomy, from embryology, from geology; and C. The philosophy of evolution. That’s what we’re going to look at for a few moments, the theory of evolution
How did we get here? The Psalmist has a description in Psalm 139, which I will just read for you because it will take you a little time to turn there. But let’s listen as the Psalmist writes about the creation of man’s body. The Psalmist writes Psalm 139, verse 13:
“For thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst weave me in my mother’s womb; I will give thanks to thee for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are thy works and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from thee. When I was made in secret and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth. Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance. And in thy book they were all written; the days that were ordained for me. When as yet, there was not one of them.”
What is evolution? All life today, according to evolution, has developed from a single simple cell through natural, uniform processes over millions or even billions of years. Evolutionists differ over the time. An atheistic evolutionist is a man who believes it all happened by chance. A theistic evolutionist is a man who believes that God guided in the processes. Now our editorial writer for the Times Herald was a theistic evolutionist, for he suggested that God guided in the processes.
Capital B, the evidence for evolution. Now, there are other lines of evidence than the lines of evidence that I have suggested for you here in the outline; comparative anatomy, embryology, geology. I think, however, these are the major lines of evidence, and I believe that the other lines of evidence will not add a great deal to what we have here. But due to time, we have to cut down somewhere.
First of all, the evidence from comparative anatomy. Its most popular form is “you look like a monkey.” Now, it’s popular today among evolutionists to say that evolutionists do not really believe that men came from monkeys. If you will get Bolton David House’s book Evolution and the Christian Faith, you will see a long string of citations from eminent scientists who say precisely that, that man has come from an ape. And so to say “you look like a monkey” does validly represent the viewpoint of a great majority of our evolutionary scientists.
Now, this is not really true. We do not really look like apes. We have lots of things in common, but of course since we are all the creatures of God and as a matter of fact, I am going to try to point out, if we get there, on the sixth day of creation in the Garden of Eden, it is true that man was created the same day that the great land animals were created and furthermore that man and the land animals were created out of the dust of the earth; both of them. That is stated in the Book of Genesis, so we should expect to find some similarity. But it’s not really true that men do look like monkeys, and I think if you will examine the evidence, look carefully at the apes, you will see there are some differences. Is, however, their similarity proof of origin, or is similarity evidence of a similar origin from the same designer of them both?
Now, that, of course, is the question. And so the idea that man is like a monkey or man is like an ape does not necessarily prove that man descended from the ape. They both may have originated from the same designer. And I think that that sufficiently explains that particular likeness, whatever it — you may think it to be.
Let’s move on to embryology. The claims for evolution from embryology are based upon the biogenetic law that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny. Now, that means this, if I can explain it, remember I am just a layman. It’s difficult for me to even pronounce these scientific terms. The point of this biogenetic law is simply that the embryo passes through the same stages in development that human beings went through in their evolution; ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny.
Now, it is interesting that this biogenetic law, which has been so useful to evolutionists, is now stated in one of the most recent editions of Encyclopedia Britannica, to be a gross oversimplification.
Now, we know that adult characteristics are contained in the chromosome of the first cell of the embryo and that every bit of development in the embryo, to the final human being, is not a development by chance, but a development by exactness.
Now, you may have read some old books on evolution and you may remember that the gill slits, the so-called gill slits, of the human embryo were said to be so much like the fins of the fish or the gills of the fish, that that was evidence of the fact that man descended from the fish. Now, as a result of more recent research, we can say these things. The embryo, at a month old, has certain folds on what is becoming its neck that could perhaps be imagined to resemble the gills of a fish. Any resemblances are very superficial as the folds never have the function or the material of gills and gradually develop into jaw, neck, and et cetera. The gill-slit argument, someone has recently said, offers about as much proof that man evolved from the fish as the moon shaped faced of a young Chinese is proof that he evolved from the moon. This is one of our young men who teaches science in one of our schools. He made that statement. I thought it was funny. And as far as I can tell from scientific reading, what little science I know, this is a valid description of the force of that argument.
But now let’s come to geology. Probably the most important claims of evolutionists revolve around the fossils; remains of living matter found in the earth’s crust. Older rocks contain fossils which are more simple, while younger rocks contain fossils which are more complex.
Now, as one can see, this argument has an underlying assumption and the underlying assumption is that life could only have progressed from the simple to the complex. Dates are determined from radioactive methods primarily. At best, we now know that such methods of dating are very shaky, and they too depend upon unproved assumptions. And, furthermore, there are evidences of fossils that are misplaced. And I do have a little interesting paragraph or so in connection with this that I think I would like to read to you to show that scientific thought with regard to the fossils is not all one-sided.
One of the men who has written on the subject of evolution, who is also a teacher, has said, “Since evolutionists established the age of the strata by the fossils that are found in them it would seem that the fossils should go well with the ages assigned to the rocks in which they are found. Often however, they don’t. When instead of in a progression from simple to complex, fossils are found together with such various degrees of complexity that, according to the theory, they should not have been living at the same time. It shows that fossil evidence does not always support the evolutionary idea as it is made to appear to do. One of the most interesting examples of fossils getting out of step with their strata is the case of the apparently human footprints. These are of sufficient importance.”
And then he goes on to give a long quotation from a teacher in one of our colleges and at the close of it, he says this, “According to A.C. Ingalls, scientists whose presuppositions will not allow them to accept these as human footprints are divided between two possible solutions as to their origin; that they were carved by ancient Indians; that they were formed by some now unknown animal which left footprints resembling those of human beings.
Another proof, which is similar but more interesting is found at the Paluxy River, near Glen Rose, Texas. (Is that the way you pronounce that river? Paluxy? A good Texan, is it? Someone is nodding like this.) Tracks of both people and dinosaurs have been found there in the same strata, which is supposed to be from the Crustaceous period. But according to the evolutionary theory, man did not evolve until seventy million years after that period. It would seem impossible then that the two sets of prints could be found side by side in the same strata when a river exposed to the strata, if there was really a period of seventy million years between dinosaur and man. Morris concludes that both were formed after the creation of man and that the time periods postulated by evolutionists are seriously exaggerated.”
Well, we don’t have time to deal with all the things that have to do with this subject, but I believe if you will do some study on your own you will discover that these evidences for evolution are not very strong at all. Let me say a word about the philosophy of evolution, then we will turn to sum up the problems.
Evolution is the direct result of Humanism. You may remember that during the Middle Ages there arose a cultural and intellectual developments in which men became very much interested in ancient writings. There was a great deal of interest in obtaining ancient manuscripts; and in the reading of ancient manuscripts, both Latin and Greek. And out of Humanism, there came the Renaissance. And in the age of the Renaissance, which means of course, new birth, new knowledge — Out of the Renaissance also arose the Reformation. I think that we can safely say that Calvin, Luther were men who were tremendously affected by the Renaissance, but when they began to read the Bible, because it too was an ancient writing which men had not been reading for centuries, they discovered the truth of God, and the Holy Spirit worked and the movement, which we know as the Reformation began.
But Humanism led to the Renaissance, and it flowered in the rationalism of the Enlightenment. And as a result of that flowering, there was produced Charles Darwin and the Evolutionary movement. It is I think also fair to say, though of course an evolutionist would not want to own Hitler, but it is fair to say that Hitler was an evolutionist and did use evolutionary arguments in his attempt to extricate the Jews. I don’t think it’s fair to say that evolution necessarily leads to a Hitler, but in the case of Hitler, he was an evolutionist and did use that type of argument in order to foster his own thought. The main thought of Humanism and of the Renaissance and of Rationalism is of course that man is sufficient for all his needs. And consequently evolution itself fits beautifully in with that particular theory.
Let’s come now to the problems of evolution. I think it is also fair to say that evolution can be shown to be a faith. It is a faith that the organic world was formed by chance. To answer the problem of the first life; how did life arise? The only real answer that an evolutionist can give is a psychological rejoinder. He says, “It took an incomprehensibly great number of years for evolution to take place.”
Now, the natural reaction that you and I have when we are told that the evolutionary process may have begun one hundred million years ago or five hundred million years ago or ten billion years ago, well our natural reaction to that is that anything could happen in one hundred million years. And so we are lulled to sleep by the idea that an incomprehensibly long number of years could have brought about the origin of the first life. But never forget that that is the ultimate problem. And time is not a cause. Please remember that. Time is not a cause.
You know if we were to say a hundred million years, anything can happen. We might even think that Humphrey could even be elected president given a hundred million years. Or Baylor could win the Southwest Conference given one hundred million years or even Charlie Brown could win a baseball game in a hundred million years. So, let us not lose sight of our basic problem.
One of the most interesting paragraphs, I think, in my study of the subject of evolution is a paragraph written by an evolutionist of unspotted reputation among evolutionists. Now, this man is an outstanding scientist. He is an evolutionist. He has written a book called The Implications of Evolution. His name is G.A. Carcutt. And these are the things that Carcutt says in his book, which are most interesting because, remember, these are written by an evolutionist. He says there are seven basic assumptions that are often not mentioned during discussions of evolution. Many ignore the first six assumptions and only consider the seventh. But here they are. One, the first assumption is that non-living things gave rise to living material. Spontaneous generation occurred in some way. Second, the second assumption is that spontaneous generation occurred only once. Third, the third assumption is that viruses, bacteria, plants and animals are all interrelated. Fourth, the fourth assumption is that the protozoa gave rise to the metazoa. That’s very clear, isn’t it? The fifth assumption is that the various invertebrate, that is without backbones, gave rise (which one am I reading here), the fifth assumption is that the various invertebrate follow or are interrelated. Sixth, the sixth assumption is that the invertebrates gave rise to the vertebrates. That is, those without backbones, gave rise to those with backbones.
Now, that may seem very inconsequential to us, but that is a matter of great significance for an evolutionist to explain how that change took place. Seven, the seventh assumption is that within the vertebrates, the fish gave rise to the amphibian, the amphibian to the reptiles and the reptiles to the birds and mammals. Sometimes this is expressed in other words. That is, that the modern amphibian and reptiles have a common ancestral stock and so on. For the initial purposes of this discussion, Curcutt says, “I shall consider that the supporters of the theory of evolution hold that all these seven assumptions are valid and that these assumptions form, quote, “the general theory of evolution.” Now, the interesting thing is that Professor Curcutt has said, not one of these seven assumptions is capable of verification. Not one of them is capable of verification.
Now, is evolution a faith? Well, of course it’s a faith. It’s a faith just like Christianity is a faith. Now, they say that they have facts, and it is not a faith. Christians say their faith is a faith, but they also claim that they have facts. So here we have an evolutionist telling us that the seven fundamental assumptions of evolution are incapable of verification. It is a faith.
Now, here are some of the difficulties. Capital A, The Law of Thermodynamics. The evolutionary hypothesis is opposed by the first two laws of Thermodynamics. Now, I wish that I were a mechanical engineer, and that I could explain this in very simple terms to you. In the first place, I know very little about the two Laws of Thermodynamics. I can remember in physics being exposed to them. That was — well, it was in the twentieth century, but just barely [laughter] and so what I know about it, why you could put in a thimble. Let me state the two laws. You probably know them better than I.
First, matter or energy, (that is something we have learned since I studied physics), matter or energy cannot be created or destroyed, but it can be changed from one form to another. In other words, where did it come from if not evolved? The second law is energy tends toward entropy, entropy. In all energy transformations, some energy is transferred into nonreversible heat energy. We know that, I presume. Thus energy tends toward a state of equilibrium, when it is no longer available to do work. In all ordered structures, within a closed system, the tendency is toward increasing disorder and randomness.
Now, what that means is the precise opposite of what the evolutionist claims. The evolutionist claims that there is increasing order, and we are proceeding from the simple to the complex, whereas the Laws of Thermodynamics say the opposite. And the second Law of Thermodynamics says in effect, the universe is not expanding and growing in complexity and order but it is running down. As a matter of fact, it says there is a tendency toward increasing disorder and randomness. It reminds me of a story of a scientists who was lecturing to a group of people. And he was speaking on a similar kind of subject, and he was saying something like this. He was saying that the universe is running down and he pointed out that after this process had taken place and the sun had burned itself out, as a result, the earth would be cold, dark, and uninhabited with temperatures many degrees below zero and that all life would long since have ceased. A man in the audience rose in great excitement and he said, “How soon did you say this would happen?” And the man said according to the best scientific information, it will be about seventeen billion years. And the man said “whew” and sat down with evident relief saying, “I thought you said seventeen million.” [Laughter] The Laws of Thermodynamics are opposed to evolution.
Second, Genetics, Mendel and mutations. Evolutionists claim that natural selection, by which good mutations are preserved, (I should say natural selection is the preservation of the good) working on chance mutations, mutations of sudden variation resulting from chromosome malfunction, they say natural function working on chance mutations produces higher forms of life. Is that possible? Gregor Mendel, the father of the science of genetics, has shown that the laws of heredity prove that organisms can only reshuffle characteristics already present; that there is no such thing as gaining new characteristics. New kinds of genetic material progressively more complicated are impossible of generation at the present time, so far as scientists are concerned. They know of no instance of the generation of progressively more complicated organisms. For example, attempts to bridge the gap between the invertebrates and the vertebrates are science fiction. According to Curcutt, it is impossible. Further, the geneticists say, that all mutations — not all I should say, almost all mutations are harmful, are degenerative, and that many of them are even fatal. So that so far as science is concerned, the missing links are still missing.
I want to take a little time out to read something which I got a kick out of. And I am just a simple person. I am just trying to figure this subject for myself. I like this. This was written by one of our scientists who teaches in one of our colleges. He says, “Statements have been made to the effect that if a million monkeys struck at random, the keys of a million typewriters for a million years, they might write one of Shakespeare’s plays. Possibly no one has investigated to ascertain whether there is any validity in such a statement, but as this is easy to do without actually setting up the experiment, let us look into the matter and also let us see if it has any bearing on the problem of evolution. Suppose we allow a number of assumptions, which will greatly aid the monkeys in their work, we will give them typewriters with only capital letters and some punctuation so they will not need to capitalize, and will not type dollar signs and other unnecessary characters. We will work them in shifts so that the typewriters are going continually; twenty-four hours a day and seven days a week as monkeys do not observe the Lord’s day. [laughter] Although, monkeys find the effort of prolonged concentration difficult, we will assume that they type constantly at the rate of five keys per second. We will even assume that they do not lose time while inserting paper into the machines or in changing shifts when one monkey relieves another. Furthermore, let us have a billion monkeys typing at all times instead of a million. This number of Shakespearean simians under these conditions should turn out a play in a mere thousand years or less.
“Genesis, the first Book of the Bible, is about twice as long as some of Shakespeare’s plays. How much of the Bible could a billion monkeys type in a billion years? Could they write more than Genesis? Could they write as much as Genesis? How long would it take them to write the first chapter of Genesis? How long would it take them to write the first verse of Genesis?; “In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth”. The typists, the typing put out by the monkeys in one year would amount to about one hundred and fifty-eight, (I think this is trillion or quadrillion; there are three, six, nine, twelve — fifteen zeros after one hundred and fifty-eight. You mathematicians could tell me what that is.) Let us punctuate in marks and spaces. If single-spaced on one side of the page, this would be enough typing to make eight stacks of paper from here to the moon. But in one year, the monkeys have hardly begun their task.
“How long would the monkeys be typing before there was a reasonable chance, say one chance in a hundred, that they have written the first verse of the Bible? The answer is about one hundred and twenty (and then three, six, nine, twelve, fifteen, eighteen, twenty-one, twenty-seven, thirty, thirty-three, thirty-six, thirty-nine, forty-two, forty-five, forty-eight, fifty-one, fifty-four, fifty-seven — sixty zeroes after one hundred and twenty). So we could say with assurance that a million monkeys typing for a million years would not write a play. A period of time like this is beyond our power to comprehend, but it is not eternity. Suppose one grain of sand were taken from the Sahara Desert each year. The time that would elapse until all the sand had been removed would seem to us a very long time indeed, but it would be insignificant compared to the time the billion monkeys typed in an effort to produce Genesis 1:1.” [laughter]
Oh, well, I don’t guess it’s necessary to read the rest of this. There is another paragraph here that says, “If someone says seriously that a million monkeys in a million years could produce some literature of merit, we can say that this is foolishness. But when a famous biologists states as a fact that a certain amount of evolution occurred in a specific time, we cannot check mathematically to see if this could be so because the method of evolution has not been satisfactorily explained. For example, J.B.S. Haldene said the following stages in human ancestry are quite clear. Four hundred million years ago, our ancestors were fish, if you could call them fish, without lower jaws of paired fins. That is, he says it’s quite clear that four hundred million years ago, our ancestors were a type of animal lower than fish. It might seem that even in the same period of time, it would be more likely that a billion monkeys would type a sentence of ten words and some other sentences besides, than that some fish would give rise to men and a lot of four-footed creatures and birds as well. Without a mathematical basis for making a comparison and granting that things are not always as they appear, it seems incredible that there could be so vast a difference in time between that required by the monkeys and that needed by the fish, when the task of the monkeys appear simpler.”
Well, again, the final paragraph is, “It makes this difference if man has gradually evolved, he is rising, he is a rising being and is improving, but if man was created and as history is to be found in Genesis, he is a fallen creature in need of a Savior.” Let’s hasten along.
Capital C, the origins of life and matter. We come finally, I think, to two insurmountable objections to evolution. First, the origin of life. The usual explanation is that life develops spontaneously in some stagnant pool or similar type of explanation. The probability of self — of a self-reproducing state is zero. Nor can time and chance be invoked. Multiplying zero created power by five billion or even an infinite number of years still equals zero results. What we are talking about, my dear Christian friends, it seems to me, is an article of faith, not fact. An article of faith. This is faith, and faith in something that is utterly unverifiable. Talk about Christians believing in faith. We at least have some historical facts substantiated by witnesses who wrote down the things that they had encountered in their own personal experience. But what do we have for this?
Now, we may say well are not scientists in the process of manufacturing life at the present time? Is it not possible for them to create a virus? Well, there are certain forms of experiments that are taking place that would suggest such a thing, but let me remind you, that even if a scientist could create life, and he has not been able to do it, and I have my ‘doubts’ as the Scots say, that he will. It would only prove this; that an intelligent man could create life, which is exactly what we are saying in the Bible on a lower level. For that is precisely what we are saying, that an intelligent being could create life. That is, God could do it.
Now, second, the origin of matter. Evolutionists can only speculate that matter is eternal. That, too, is a substitute faith. We do not believe that matter is eternal. We believe God is eternal, and that matter is the creation of an eternal God. They believe, those who seek to explain the origin of matter by suggesting that matter is eternal, that is their faith, that matter is eternal. And I cannot accept that. So these are, I think, the foundations in general upon which evolution rests.
Now, let’s come finally to the creation of man and what the Bible says broadly about it. I didn’t have time to put A, B and C. But capital A, the biblical account of natural creation. It’s quite a relief to turn from evolution to revelation. A revelation that is authenticated by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Capital A, the biblical account of natural creation. Will you turn in your Bibles to Genesis chapter one?
Now, let us remember Genesis chapter one is outside the realm of empirical science. No one has experienced what happened, what is described here in Genesis chapter one except Adam, and he is no longer with us to give us his testimony. And even he would be limited in his testimony, for he would not have known what happened on the first five days of creation. So, what we are given here is revelation, according to the claims of Scripture.
Now, let me say just three things about the creation in the Bible; described in the Bible. First of all, this creation was supernatural. We read “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Until God spoke, nothing existed, according to the Bible, that is, of earth. This account “in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” is incidentally a bulwark against all types of beliefs and philosophies. For example, it is a bulwark against the eternity of matter or materialism; “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” It is a bulwark against atheism; “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” It is a bulwark against polytheism; “In the beginning, God”, ‘not Gods’. Now if you should say to me, oh but does not the biblical word for God, does that not have the plural form here as it usually does? Yes, that’s true. But in chapter 2, verse 4, we read that “this is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created and the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven.” And there the term Lord, which is the translation of the Hebrew tetragramatin is singular. So the Lord God and thus Elohim in Genesis chapter one verse one is intended to be singular in thought and our thought as well.
It is a bulwark against pantheism. There is a distinction between God and the created universe. It is a bulwark against dualism. That is, the mind, for example, of the Greeks is divine and creation is evil. It is a bulwark against that, for this came from the hand of a Holy God. It is a bulwark against fatalism. In other words, the creation did not come into existence by chance, but “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” It is a bulwark against evolution. And that is specifically what we are speaking about here. And it also is a bulwark against the tendency of the twentieth century to empty human history of any meaning at all. For it tells us that human history is the product of the creative work of God and that he is therefore infinitely interested in what is happening down here.
So the creation was supernatural. Until God spoke, nothing existed of the creation. Second, the creation was sudden. This is not something that happened over a long period of time. The analogy of our Lord’s sudden miracles in nature and in human beings fits here. We are inclined to think that it is contrary to natural processes for God to do something suddenly, and He would not violate natural processes in his creation. But in the miracles that our Lord Jesus performed, we have the same type of thing. For example, when he turned the water into wine. He did it immediately on the spot. And if you had taken that wine up, you would have said this wine has been aged. For the master of the feast said remember, most people bring out the good wine, and then when people are drunk and they don’t care what it tastes like, (any drinker knows what he precisely is talking about). You may start out with good whiskey, but after you have had a few, it makes a considerably less difference whether what you are drinking is have is Vat 69 or Johnny Walker. It may just as well be old corn whiskey out of a gallon jug after some time.
Now, this man said, but yours is different, you have brought or you have saved the best wine until now. So it is evident that it had all of the sense of aged wine; all the taste of aged wine about it. Someone might have said that’s deceptive; to create something that would deceive people. But that is precisely what Jesus did. Creation was sudden. There is no objection to that really. It is glorifying to God. When that was done, why then they said, this is the beginning of the miracles that Jesus did and he manifested his glory then. So, it is not deception to create wine that has the sense of age. It is glorifying. And finally, creation involved then, the superficial appearance of history. Scientists often say if God created things as they are, well then he would be deceiving us because as we examine our creation, we discover that it has the appearance of age. Look at the rocks, for example. Did he really create the rocks? Well, then he is deceiving us because we scientists look at them and we say that they are five million years old. But if he just created them as if they were five million years old to look that way, that would be deceiving.
Well, what I have said follows here. It is not deception. It is the glory of God. For, remember, he has told us that this is the way that He has done it and we are without excuse, if we refuse to accept his testimony to what he has done.
Well, now let’s come to the particularly to the biblical account of man’s creation. Capital B, the biblical account of man’s creation. Evolution by the way, claims a natural transition in the development of man, but I want you to notice as you read Genesis 1, that the word created occurs three times, and it occurs at these three points as if to show that there is no such transition. For example, it occurs in verse 1; “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Here is a new beginning. Then it occurs again in verse 21. There it was the change from nothing to inorganic matter; “God created the heavens and the earth.” Verse 21, and God created the great sea monsters. Here the change from the inorganic to organic life. Another great change and the word bara to create, is used. And the third instance of creation is in verse 27, “God created man”. And here we move from the organic life to man. Bara, to create, is never used of a human production in the Old Testament. It is always used of God. It is never used of the — with the accusative of matter. Well, that is rather striking. Although, I don’t think we can make too much over it in this case because in the second chapter, we do have stated that God did form man of the dust of the ground. The word bara is not used there. The idea back of create, this Hebrew word, is the idea of divine, unconditioned causality and the newness of the product. That is, the stress; the newness of the product.
Now, let’s look at the text for a moment. Genesis 1:26-28, and I just want to quickly because we only have a minute or two. I want to quickly pick out some important points. Some of these we will deal with later on next month when we deal with questions such as the image of God and man. But first of all, it’s evident that the climax of the creation week is the creation of man. His creation is reserved as the last descriptive account of what God did before He rested on the seventh day. So the whole creation moves toward man as the climax of the creation week.
Secondly, he shares the sixth day with the land animals. He is created on the same day as they. I wouldn’t have written it that way if I had been writing it. I would have put the creation of man on a day by itself. It seems to me to be such a distinct thing. But yet, there is intended by this I think, the point that man is in nature as well as over it. He is told that he is to rule over nature but he himself is part of nature, or a part of God’s creation. He is continuous with nature, but he is also discontinuous with it. They are made of dust, and he is made of dust. By the way, in the nineteenth verse of the second chapter, we read and “Out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky.” Well, they were formed like man was formed. They are made of dust. They feed as man feeds. They reproduce with similar blessing. They are told to multiply and be fruitful, and so is man.
So there is continuity between man and nature, but there is a discontinuity. Notice God says “let them rule.” Now, that points to man’s unique status. He is to rule. Furthermore, it points to his unique nature, because it is he who is to name the animals. We read “The man gave names to all the cattle,” verse 20 of chapter 2 “and to the birds of the sky and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.” In other words, he is different from all of the animals. He is over them. His crowning glory is his relation to God.
Now, let them rule, points to man’s unique status. You’ll notice, by the way, too, that “let us make” is used in verse 26 of man is over against “let the earth bring forth” in verse 24. That seems to imply that there is a distinction between the two. And by the way, notice also that in this 26 verse, it is “let us make man”, where as in the case of verse 24, it is, ”let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind.” This us points to the note of self-communion in the Trinity. And this impressive use of the plural, “let us,” indicates that this is a momentous step in God’s program of creation.
Now, notice it also says “let us make man in our image, according to our likeness.” Now, Deilitch and Faunrach [phonetic], an outstanding German scholar, both of them were outstanding German scholars, one is dead; Faunrach [phonetic] and Deilitch have suggested that the “us” refer to the angels and that God looked around to the angelic hosts in heaven and said “let us make man in our image.” That, I think, does not agree with the context of this chapter nor the next when we do not have any reference to angels, nor does it agree with chapters such as Isaiah chapter 40 in verse14, where God calls out to all of creation and says “who was with me when I created the creation?” So, the ‘us’ here, is a reference to God alone.
Now, you can say as many Hebrew scholars do, that this is simply a plural of fullness. But as you read the Bible through, it becomes evident that the New Testament in explaining this “us” and “our” and “we,” has given us a clear doctrine of the Trinity. So while we cannot say that this teaches us the doctrine of the Trinity, I think it’s fair to say that there is here an indication that there is a plurality in the Godhead, further explained in the rest of the Old and New Testament as a tri-unity.
One other thing, it says in verse 27, “male and female created He them.” That suggests a bi-sexual character to humanity. In other words, man is made up of male and female. In the fifth chapter, we read in verse two, “he created them male and female, and he blessed them and named them man in the day when they were created”. I had a Bible teacher who used to like to say you can prove a lot of things from the Bible and one of the things you can prove is that Eve’s name was really Adam. And he used to turn to this text and say look it says “and he called their name Adam,” or as my version has “man,” because Adam and Eve were “man.” Sorry ladies, it’s not M-S after all. It’s man. You are man.
Now, you’ll notice here there is this bisexual character to humanity set forth that suggests that each compliments the other. Now, I don’t think this is the text for women’s lib. As far as I can tell, women’s lib is not looking for any text from the Bible to support their doctrine. The rest of the Bible makes it very plain that as far as the teaching of the relationship between man and woman is concerned, there is a spiritual equality between them. There is neither male nor female in Jesus Christ, but there is also in the mind of God, a temporal inequality or a difference of function. In the home, the man is to be the head of the house; the wife is to be subject to her husband. She is to obey her husband. These are divinely related functions. And the analogy is the analogy of the relationship between Jesus Christ and God. God is eternal and divine. He is deity. Jesus Christ is eternal and divine. He is deity. But Jesus Christ is subject to the Father. He is not unequal, but his function is a function of dependence. That is the relationship of male and female that will be developed. And finally He says, “and He blessed them.” To bless is to bestow a gift and a function. Well, time is long past gone, and I don’t have time to say a word about Genesis, 2:7. I wish I did, but we must stop. Let’s close in a word of prayer.
[Prayer] Father, we are grateful to Thee for Tthy word and for the privilege of the study of it. And are blessed to ponder the claims of science, learn from science, but at the same time enable us to ponder and learn from Thy word. Help us to remember that our interpretations of the word may be wrong, just as the interpretations of the scientists of their materials may also be wrong. Enable us to honestly seek the truth and find it.
For Jesus’ sake. Amen.