CAN A SABBATH-KEEPER BELIEVE IN EVOLUTION?
There is a striking, fundamental connection between the Sabbath and evolution. Many of us, perhaps, have felt that we need not be concerned about evolution. We have heard it stated that there is no real conflict between science and the Bible, or between science and religion. But that is only because we have not fully realized just what evolution is.
"Say, you don't swallow that one about Jonah and the whale, do you?" sneeringly asked a relative -- a young lady fresh from college, some time ago. I was shocked, for she had been reared in a Christian home, and, before her college days had been converted.
"You ought to study biology," she continued, "and you'd get your eyes opened. You still cling to a lot of those dusty old myths and legends and fairy tales of the Bible. That's just ignorance, and superstition. Science has proven that the Bible is not an accurate historian, nor a textbook on science. We know now that Moses' narrative of creation was only a legend. Most of Genesis is nothing but folklore. There wasn't any Adam. And think how silly is that story about Eve being made from one of Adam's ribs."
Something had happened to this young lady. She had gone to college a sincere, happy, jolly, Christian girl full of ideals. She came out a typical modern girl. A scoffer. Idealism shattered. Serious, sarcastic, cynical. Yet she stoutly maintained that she still believed in God. Only her conception had changed, and most of Christianity had been revealed to her as silly superstition. She had had her eyes "opened"! Yes, and Satan opened them! "Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light" (II Corinthians 11:14).
I quote this instance because it is typical. Our colleges and universities are turning out thousands and thousands of young men and young women like her, every year.
Now let us get OUR eyes opened! Let's awake to the significance of this situation! Professors in denominational colleges, supported by professing Christians, teach us that we can believe BOTH in God and in evolution. And most of us have heard this and assumed it to be the truth. Listen!
Satan knows how to keep abreast with the times. He employs modern weapons for a modern world. AND EVOLUTION IS THE DEVIL'S MOST POWERFUL MODERN WEAPON. With it Satan is snatching people away from God faster than God's people are able to win others to Him. And Satan is picking the very flower of our young manhood and womanhood -- the high school and college students.
Can you accept both God and evolution? Can you be a Sabbath-keeper and believe in evolution? What PROOF have you that God IS your God? What PROOF that He is the ONE TRUE GOD? That He is greater than other gods? When God desired to have a sign between Him and the children of Israel, that they might know that He was their God, as well as that He might know they were His people, what sign did He choose? He made the Sabbath that sign (Exodus 31:12-18). WHY? HOW does the Sabbath point to Him as the ONE TRUE GOD? SIMPLY BY POINTING, AS A MEMORIAL, TO CREATION! The God who CREATED this earth, and everything that we see and know -- surely THAT God is the TRUE GOD, greater than all other gods. Surely Creation is the one supreme proof that He IS GOD! Rob GOD of that proof, and what proof have you left that He is greater than the gods of the heathen? When you keep the Sabbath, you affirm, every seventh day, your belief that God is the Creator!
Is Satan dumb? Oh no! Satan knows exactly WHERE to strike to destroy the faith of those he wants to take from God. When Satan destroys belief in Creation -- when the Devil succeeds in convincing men that this earth was not created by an all-powerful creating God, but that it came -- listen to this, for it is the accepted scientific definition of evolution -- "by continuous progressive change, by NATURAL causes, according to fixed laws, brought about only through RESIDENT forces" -- then Satan has destroyed the PROOF of God.
Do you know just what evolution is? It is the atheist's explanation of creation -- WITHOUT GOD. The infidel had to originate some kind of an explanation. Ask him, "Well, if you don't believe in a personal God, then how did this earth get here? How did you get here?" -- and, until he invented the theory of evolution, he could not answer. Without evolution he could not account for his own very existence. So evolution became inevitable.
It is true that evolution originated in pagan, infidel, unbelieving minds. It is the product of the mind of the "natural man," as the Apostle Paul describes him. The mind to which the things spoken of in the Holy Scriptures are, as those Scriptures say, "but foolishness." Those world-renowned scientists who developed, cradled, and propagated into scientific acceptance the modern theory of evolution were -- every one -- atheists. Darwin, originally professing Christianity, utterly lost his faith through his conversion to evolution. Huxley, Spencer, Haeckel, Lyell -- atheists or agnostics, every one! The evolution-believing scientist today is no more a believer in your God and mine, than were those of Darwin's day. Thomas A. Edison said the word "God" had no meaning to him! Luther Burbank died proclaiming his unbelief in any personal, creating God.
But do our college professors teach that evolution denies Creation -- denies God -- denies the Bible? They do not dare! They are teaching in schools supported wholly or in part by professing Christians. They are teaching too many students reared in Christian faith. It would be too great a shock. It would create and intensify prejudice. So our college professors know they must be subtle -- just as Satan would have them. They approach the subject with the stealth and fox-like cunning of that old "serpent." They tell our young students they may believe BOTH in God and in evolution. They tell the students and the public that there is no real conflict between science and religion. They lull suspicion and quiet prejudice. They hand out evolution sugar-coated, craftily assuring us it is entirely harmless. They appeal to the pride and the vanity of the "rational" mind. To understand and believe evolution becomes a mark of distinction, of learning, of "higher" education. To reject it is a mark of gross ignorance, rank prejudice, threadbare superstition. They present a mass of highly complicated arguments, "positive" evidence, and supposed facts -- all based upon an imaginary hypothesis. They fill the student's mind so full of complex and intricate minor arguments and details that he loses sight of the main fundamentals which must be proved or disproved, before any of the arguments hanging upon them become established. These underlying fundamentals they ignore, or rush hurriedly over. The student is induced to take them for granted. After a single year's course in Biology or Geology, the average college student is thoroughly convinced that evolution is conclusively proved and established. Since evolution is PROVED, anything contrary must be false.
Gradually, as he proceeds in life, our former college student begins to realize that he cannot reconcile the teachings of the Bible with evolution. So, of course, evolution has disproved the Bible. It never occurs to him that the Bible might disprove evolution. When there is dispute between the Bible and science, science is always right and the Bible always wrong.
Our student who has accepted evolution still thinks he believes in God. His professor told him he could believe in both God and evolution -- oh, but that professor neglected to define his God. For evolution, god is not a creating God, -- he is only a pantheistic god -- everywhere present in nature -- just another name for blind, dumb, purposeless nature. But, now, he gradually realizes he cannot reconcile evolution and the Creation account in Genesis. He does not realize, at first, that evolution has destroyed his sole PROOF of God. But it does destroy any conception in his mind about infallibility of the Bible, or divine Inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
The Century Dictionary and Encyclopedia defines evolution as "opposed to Creation." Huxley said it was "directly antagonistic to Creation," adding, "Evolution makes it impossible to believe the Bible." Sir Oliver Lodge says, "Taught by science, we learn that there has been no fall of man; there has been only rise." Another frank evolutionist, Carl Vogt, says, "Evolution turns the Creator out-of-doors."
Do you realize what evolution teaches? It is much more than a theory that man "came from monkey." Briefly, it is this: The earth "came" by purely NATURAL causes, by the Planetesimal Hypothesis, of Prof. Thos. Crowder Chamberlain. Until a few years ago, the earth "came" by the "Spiral Nebular Hypothesis" of La Place. Now, however, that theory is discarded and out-of-date. Man "came," in Lamark's day, by the theory of "Use and Disuse." But since the day of Darwin, man has come by a natural fixed law of variation of species, a law of the "survival of the fittest," called "Natural Selection." That means that nature -- blind nature -- selects the fittest for survival, the weaker being exterminated in the struggle for existence, and therefore progress is ever upward. The first life upon this earth, according to the Gospel of evolution, "came" by spontaneous generation, or some unknown process, many millions of years ago, in the warm ocean slime. The first active life was a single-celled protoplasmic "amoeba," so small you could see it only through a high-powered microscope. It generated into additional cells. It developed, grew, multiplied, until the oceans became peopled with vast swarms of worms. And mark you, these worms, according to evolution, are our ancestors. It goes back much farther than the monkey. A life grew and multiplied and developed, some of these supposed early sea forms gradually took to land, developing lungs in place of gills. Then developed, out of these, through the fixed NATURAL law of "variation of species" (meaning one species of life changes into, and becomes, another and different and higher species) caused only by RESIDENT forces, reptile forms, and then mammals. Life upon earth developed, advanced -- always advancing -- upward, ever upward -- through the ages, one species changing gradually into another, different, more advanced species of life, finally reaching the monkey, then the anthropoid ape, and then, finally -- the dawn of MAN. Man was a gradual transition from anthropoid ape -- so gradual that no one could possibly tell at just what stage of development it ceased to be ape and became man.
That, briefly, is evolution! Can you reconcile that theory with any CREATION that points to God as Creator? Can you accept it without denying the PROOF of God? Can you accept it and say you are keeping a Sabbath that points to Creation?
Now let's proceed just a little farther. According to evolution, there could have been no Adam -- no clearly defined first man. Therefore there could have been NO FALL OF MAN!
The Devil is not content with destroying the proof of God, the Father. He must go farther. The only FALL OF MAN has been upward -- ever UPWARD! The first human beings were mere ape-men -- almost as much ape as man. Virtually no intelligence. No language, nor intelligent speech. According to science, the process of development continued for millions of years, from this ape-man beginning through various familiar ages -- the "Old Stone Age," the "Iron Age," the "Bronze Age," and the others, through which science imagines man has traveled. Man has continued to progress according to science, clear down to the present day, when man is supposed to be progressing faster than ever before. Isn't PROGRESS the gospel of the day? Isn't it the religion of the world? PROGRESS! Yes, but where? Toward God, or toward Satan? Material progress, perhaps. But spiritual and moral progress, NO.
Now note where this leads us. Since man is not fallen, but has ever continued to progress upward, MAN NEVER HAD ANY NEED OF A SAVIOUR! Thus does evolution dispose of the great purpose -- the great proof -- of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
But evolution does not stop here. Evolution teaches that the miraculous and the supernatural are impossible. Why, all on earth evolution is, is an attempted explanation of how things came by NATURAL causes, through RESIDENT forces. Just blind, dumb, purposeless nature. Just happen-so. No miracles. Nothing sudden or supernatural. The scientist says that the miraculous and the supernatural are scientifically impossible. Evolution absolutely and completely denies the possibility of the supernatural. Now let us ask, is God anything but the supernatural? So does evolution dispose of God!
But still that is not all! The young college student, who has learned about evolution, sneers about Jonah and the whale. Evolution has taught him that the miraculous is impossible. The story of Jonah is a miracle. So it becomes a silly joke. Do you see Satan's purpose in striking at this? Because Jonah was a type of Christ, the ONLY SIGN GIVEN BY JESUS CHRIST THAT HE WAS THE MESSIAH -- the only proof that the resurrection was upon the Sabbath and not upon the first day of the week -- the only proof which does away with the justification of the world for keeping a different day than the one which points to God as the Creator!
And Satan, through evolution, and the teachings against the supernatural, has destroyed one thing more! Why has the Devil caused our modern scientists, and our young college students, to sneer at the account of the creation of Eve from Adam's rib? Picture this! Adam in the garden -- his side opened -- and from the wound came Eve, Adam's bride. Now picture another event of which that was the type, four thousand years later. The second Adam, Jesus Christ, on the Cross -- a wound in His side -- and from this wound poured the blood which was the purchase price of the bride for Him! Eve was a type of the Church of God! So Satan had to attack that, too, and cause our modern intellectuals to regard that with scorn and ridicule.
You will find that it is such key points -- the signs and proofs which point to and prove God and Christ; the inspiration and veracity of the Bible; and the Bride of Christ, the Church of God on earth -- the very things that Satan would destroy at which the Devil shrewdly levels his weapons.
Can a man believe BOTH in God and in evolution? Are these modern scientific teachings in accord with the Bible? We answer with a question. Can a man believe in both Satan and God? Are Satan's teachings in accord with those of the Holy Spirit in the Scriptures? Can we reconcile them?
"Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light." Our college students are getting their eyes "opened." Man is ever advancing. Instead of being taught to worship the God of Creation, they are being taught to worship man and his wonderful, ever advancing handiwork. THOUSANDS EVERY YEAR! The high school and college students of our land. The flower of our youth. The future LEADERS of our modern civilization. Satan truly knows WHERE and HOW to strike. And EVOLUTION IS HIS MOST POWERFUL MODERN WEAPON.