God and Darwin

by William MacDonald

published in The Believer's Magazine, October 1991


Anyone who wants to know about evolution should read Rom 1, especially the last fifteen verses. Not that he will find the theory defended there. Certainly not! But he will get a new insight into why unbelievers insight on embracing the lie of evolution, even if it is the biggest hoax that has ever been perpetrated on the human race.


The passage begins with the statement that God's wrath is revealed against men who suppress the truth (v. 18). Suppressing the truth is a perfect description of the activities of many evolutionists. They never miss an opportunity to ridicule creationists, to deny them a day in court, to boast that no true scientist believes in creation. Because the truth is self-vindicating, the best they can do is suppress it.


The fact is that they actually know there is a God. His eternal power and Godhead are evident in the works and wonders of creation and providence. They know that design demands a designer. They know that nothing cannot create something out of nothing. All this means that their denial of God, the Creator is inexcusable (vv. 19- 21 ).


This passage teaches that primitive man was of a high moral order. Adam was more knowledgeable than anyone reading this article - certainly more intelligent than the one who wrote it. Our earliest ancestors were not cave men, with a leopard's skin draped around their loins and wielding a fierce-looking shillelagh. No, they were superior beings who had extensive knowledge of the true and living God.


But what happened? They abandoned their concept of God. They did not honor Him as God nor were they thankful to Him. As a result their thinking became crooked and distorted. Wisdom gave way to stupidity. It is always that way. Light rejected is light denied. As Paul says, "their foolish hearts were darkened."


The next thing you know, they were making and worshipping idols. Some were graven images of men, some of birds, some of animals, and some even of snakes. Now this doesn't make any sense whatever. Here are people making their own gods of wood, metal, or earthenware. A creator has to be greater than anything he creates, yet the idolaters are bowing before their own productions. In this way they seek to get rid of a supreme and sovereign Creator.


It is a fixed principle, a basic law of life that we become like what we worship. When people worship a holy God, they, in turn, become holy. They are constrained to imitate His character. But when people fashion their own god in their own likeness, they are also free to form their own rules of life. If their god is a bird. beast or serpent, then their moral and ethical standards will be on a par with those of animals. As a result, any basis for true godliness goes out the window, and is replaced by a new law derived from animal behavior - the survival of the fittest. This crude principle, which lies at the heart of every theory of evolution, is dressed up with the benign title of "natural selection", and then used to not only explain but justify atrocities like the holocaust and the gulags. Yes, even such bizarre reasoning can be declared as wisdom in the evolutionist's world without God.


As men's concept of their god became smaller and smaller, their behavior followed suit. They went down, down, down till at last they were living like beasts and serpents. So this passage of Scripture gives the lie to evolution. Human life has not evolved from lower forms to higher; rather it has devolved from high intelligence to beastly stupidity.


Men abandoned the truth about God and worshipped a lie. That's what idolatry is: It's a lie. It says that a tree trunk or a ball is God. When they abandoned the truth, they also abandoned holiness. They gave themselves over to gross immorality, practicing even homosexuality and lesbianism. They reached the bottom of the bucket of sin. They became what we call, "abandoned".


But not only did they abandon decency. Even worse, God abandoned them. It's a terrible thing to be abandoned by God. And yet this is what has happened to people down through the centuries. There are thousands today whose lives are so dissolute and licentious that it is impossible to win them back to lives of decency apart from a mighty miracle of God's grace. They may even try to change but they slip back into their abandoned lifestyle. Their fruitless attempts at self-recovery are tragic testimony to the true cause of their moral impotence - they have been abandoned by God.


Now we come to one of the most revealing and explanatory statements in the whole passage: "they did not like to retain God in their knowledge." Why do men turn to evolution? Because they do not like to retain God in their knowledge. They know there's a God. Both the telescope and the microscope tell them there's a God. The human body, the birth of a baby, man's brain - all testify to a Creator other than chance. But man does not want to admit it. He wants to expel all thoughts of the supernatural.


Why? Because he knows that if there is a God, then he is responsible to Him, and that thought is utterly unacceptable. Sinful man does not want to be responsible to a holy God. He wants to have his own way. He wants to be his own boss, to do his own thing. He doesn't want anyone else telling him what to do. He wants to live without any divine restraints. Just denying the existence of God doesn't eliminate Him, of course, but men go on playing this game of fantasy and unreality. That is the best explanation of why men turn to evolution. Not because the theory is capable of proof. Not because it is reasonable or sane or sensible. But because it gets rid of God in the minds of its adherents.


The closing verses of the chapter give a terrible catalogue of sins that characterize the world outside of Jesus Christ. It is not a pretty picture. But it is the inevitable result when men abandon the knowledge of the true God. They not only practice these things, but they can't sleep unless they are schooling others in their evil ways.


Anyone who says there is no God is a fool. In making such a statement, he is claiming to be the God he denies. For example, he is claiming omniscience. He is saying "I know every thing. I know that no God exists." And he is claiming omnipresence. He is saying. "I have access to every place in the universe, and there is no God anywhere."


No Christian ever needs to be overawed by the vain speculations of evolutionary scientists. With Rom 1 before him, he can see more on his knees than the distinguished professor can see on his tiptoes. Man hasn't evolved; he has devolved. It has not been an ascent but a descent. By abandoning the true God, man has taken up the stupidity of idolatry. His morals have declined according to the image he worships. The reason for his insane behavior is that he does not want to retain God in his knowledge, because that would mean accountability to a higher power. And to that he says. "No way".