The following picture is used as the opening image for the unit on evolution in a 7th grade textbook used throughout most of Los Angeles, California.1
This image combines visual reconstructions of fossils from the famous ‘horse series’ (which supposedly shows the evolution of modern horses from 4/3 toed horses) and familiar evolutionary concepts to convey the message that fossil evidence shows that millions of years ago, adaptation and natural selection produced great physical change, leading to the evolution of all of life on earth.
This story does not at all fit with what we read in the book of Genesis, chapters 1 and 2, that on Day 6, God created each animal out of the ground ’according to their kinds,’ which would include horses and all other mammals. The plain meaning of these passages lead us to conclude that if the Bible is true, evolution is not, and vice versa. Therefore, when a science textbook presents convincing graphics that claim that evolution is true, it forces the student to choose between two worldviews.
Unfortunately, students are often not equipped with scientific answers to this type of evolutionary teaching. Many of them assume that “creation is religion” and “evolution is science.” Consequently, when it comes time to choose between worldviews, many students are more likely to choose evolution and its corollary: secular humanism.2
However, there are biblical and scientific answers to evolutionary teaching. Allow me to demonstrate by critiquing the picture from this LA textbook:
- In the picture, the term ‘physical change’ is used as a synonym for evolution. However, the picture fails to explain the difference between observable physical change, namely variation and adaptation, and macroevolution, the unobserved development of all of life from an evolutionary ancestor (i.e. Darwin’s ‘tree of life’).
- While adaptation and natural selection do work together to preserve the best varieties of a creature in its environment, they cannot create new structures (legs, hair, feathers, etc). This is because there is no natural process which can add new information to the genetic code of a creature. Adaptation and natural selection can only fine-tune what already exists. They do not and cannot create.3
- Fossil evidence is inconsistent with Darwin’s tree of life. Instead of showing simple varieties growing more complex and numerous, organisms appear fully-formed and complex from the start, with increasingly less variety being produced over time.4 A good example of this is with the horse series. Instead of the straight-line pattern towards the modern horse seen in the picture, paleontologists find a ‘branch’ pattern in the fossil record, in which both 3 and 1 toed horses lived together at the same time.5 However, only one-toed horses dominate today (although 3-toed horses are known to be born occasionally).6 This is an example of a loss of information and extinction, not evolution. Creation paleontologists interpret the variation in the fossils of the horse ‘series’ as an example of post-Flood diversification within a created kind.7
- Lastly, millions of years do not help evolution. The more time is allowed, the more time for bad mutations to add up and result in the extinction of a species. Time does not create; it can only destroy.3
Science textbooks often promote evolutionary beliefs, which can persuade students to accept the religion of secular humanism. Christian parents, please equip your children to combat such attempts to undermine their faith in God our Creator!
Free Resources for Further Reading:
1Eddleman, Scott. CPO Focus on Life Science. Nashua, NH: CPO Science, 2007. 212. Print.
2Ham, Ken, C. Britt. Beemer, and Todd A. Hillard. Already Gone: Why Your Kids Will Quit Church and What You Can Do to Stop It. Green Forest, AR: Master, 2009. Print.
3Sanford, John C. Genetic Entropy & the Mystery of the Genome. Waterloo, NY: FMS Publications, 2008. Print.
4Creation v. Evolution: What They Won’t Tell You in Biology Class. Ed. Daniel A. Biddle. N.p.: Xulon, 2014. 110-15. Print.
5Gish, Duane T. Evolution: The Fossils Still Say No! El Cajon, CA: Institute for Creation Research, 1995. 189-198. Print.
6Sarfati, Jonathan. “The Non-evolution of the Horse.” Creation.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Jan. 2015. <http://creation.com/the-non-evolution-of-the-horse>.
7D. Cavanaugh, T. Wood, K. Wise, “Fossil Equidae: A Monobaraminic, Stratomorphic Series”, Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Creationism, Creation Science Fellowship, 2003, pp. 143-153.