Should I Believe Evolution, My Bible, or Both?

by The Rev. Christopher Truelsen

Whatever grade of school you have finished, evolution is everywhere.  When it comes to the conflict between biblical teaching and the teaching about secular evolution, many times evolution wins the argument.  Why? People believe in science because they think they can rely only on what they can see, observe, and test.

Science, by definition, requires observable, testable phenomena.  Yet, evolution cannot be verified scientifically. The Lord reminds us: “By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible” (Hebrews 11:3 ESV.) 

Shall we trust what the science textbooks tell us, or shall we trust what God’s Word tells us?  Well, much that science brings us really is good.  Modern medicine and technology have benefited greatly from the positive aspects of hard science.  But when it comes to the theory – not law – of evolution, there is a lot of speculation, reasoning from assumptions, and good old-fashioned head-scratching. 

An honest scientist in one article dealing with two supposed human ancestors that “overlapped” in history said, "These fossils don't come with name tags on them, and this is tough stuff to try and pinpoint. . . .” * 

The Bible teaches that we are not evolved from ape-like creatures millions of years ago, but that we are noble creatures descended from one man and one woman. Because of the sin of Adam and Eve, we now live in a fallen world.  Many people assume that because the Scriptures were written by people a long time ago (although inspired by God’s Holy Spirit) that they were backward and unsophisticated. 

In reality the ancients had sophisticated understanding of mathematics, language, and astronomy . Many of the feats that ancient peoples accomplished cannot be duplicated today .  Where did that knowledge come from?  Were the great accomplishments of the past works of people descended from lowly ape or monkey-like creatures millions of years ago?  Or the works of descendants of people who were children of a noble Creator, our God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit?  Well, that’s the big question isn’t it? Lutheran teaching in line with Scripture teaches that we are descendants of a nobly created Adam and Eve.    

Yes, by faith we trust what the Scriptures tell us, but remember that when it comes to your teachers teaching about evolutionary theory, all kinds of evidence can have more than one interpretation.  When someone presents us with a picture of a bone fragment (or the actual bone), we might ask, why was “he” living in a cave, why are “his” features ape-like? One person might say, well, it was because he was descended from an ape and he didn’t know any better.  Another can look at that same evidence and say, no, the effects of sin caused this man and his people to degenerate and devolve. 

To devolve is to degenerate. Things are not evolving, they’re devolving .  Even science’s Second Law of Thermodynamics supports this, as it declares that all things are constantly devolving to greater and greater disorder. That is what the Creation is doing as a result of sin.  It is devolving and degenerating (see also Romans 8:18-22).  (Funny, how scientific law is here actually supporting original sin!) There is sufficient scriptural and scientific evidence for that too.  Trust God’s Word first, and then, interpret the evidence in light of Scripture, not the other way around. 

There are literally hundreds of resources for researching these topics. 

In the meantime, here are just a few great resources for those with questions:

*  Jeffrey Laitman, Ph.D.  quoted by E.J. Mundell in “2 Human Ancestors Probably Co-Existed,” a HealthDay internet article, 2007. ScoutNews, LLC.  p. 2 


The Rev. Christopher Truelsen is associate pastor of Saint John’s Ev. Lutheran Church in Lanesville, IN. An avid film buff and video game aficionado, his most passionate hobby is studying creation and the flood, along with learning apologetics to debate the unbiblical views of evolution.

Created: August 20th, 2007