December 12, 2017

Adam or Ape (3)

George Mulfinger, Jr.

Part OnePart Two ♦ This is Part Three

This article first appeared in Faith for the Family, July/August 1973. It is republished here by permission. We note that data in the article may have been updated since 1973, but offer it for the value of its example of Biblical thinking about available scientific data.

In Part One, fossil finds of human remains are categorized this way: 1. legitimate fossils of men; 2. misinterpreted fossils of animals; 3. deliberate hoaxes; and 4. cases in which the evidence is too fragmentary to draw a definitive conclusion. Part One discussed examples of categories 1 and 2.

In Part Two, examples of categories 3 and 4 are discussed. Part Three offers a conclusion.

A UPI release of November 10, 1972, described a new discovery by Richard Leakey from Kenya that promises to spell additional trouble for the theorists. Leakey claims to have found “the oldest complete skull of early man.” Yet it is fully modern in every respect. There is, then, no room for evolution between its time and the present. How embarrassing to the theory! This fossil is said to antedate many of the more “primitive” forms.

In attempting to evaluate such reports, however, we need to be extremely cautious about the fantastic ages claimed for the fossils. Leakey admitted that the bones themselves had not been dated. One is reminded of a similar find by the Leakey team in which an original claim of two million years was later scaled down to 10,000 years when actual radiocarbon tests were performed on the bones themselves.[1]

A study of the scientific evidence should make it abundantly clear that there is no justification of a Christian’s selling out to evolution. Undoubtedly the most illogical position of all is that of the “Christian evolutionist” or theistic evolutionist. Desiring to have the best of both worlds and the disadvantages of neither, the theistic evolutionist has attempted an unsavory synthesis of Genesis and evolution. Could not the “dust of the ground” from which Adam was fashioned, he asks, have been an animal body into which God breathed the human spirit at some point in time?

If “dust of the ground” (Genesis 2:7) means an animal body, or more specifically an ape body, there are two thoroughly amazing consequences: 1. Genesis 3:18 then indicates that an ape body will bring forth thorns and thistles! 2. In Genesis 3:19 Adam is told that he must return to an ape body at the time of his death![2] Such is of course utter nonsense and should immediately point up the theistic evolutionist’s faulty exegesis of Genesis 2:7. Yet this is but one example of the inane drivel that now seems to be passing for scholarship in some circles of evangelical Christianity.

Even if one could in some way circumvent the creation of Adam he would then be faced with the unmistakable fact of the rapid and miraculous creation of Eve. Again we have a divine fiat rather than an indirect process. No amount of sophistry, however devious, can make Genesis 2:18-23 read “evolution.”

In order to escape the inhibitions imposed by Scripture, many compromisers have found it more convenient to bypass the Genesis record entirely. The Bible does not, they tell us, state just how God created man. It is merely informing us that He is the Creator. The claim is dishonest on its face and unworthy of refutation. It is strange how men of this stripe will accept the writings of an evolutionist literally, but find it necessary to edit, interpret, and allegorize the writings of the Holy Spirit. With such a double standard there can be no “harmonization” — only an annihilation of Scripture.

Those who profess to be Christians should be willing to accept what the Lord Jesus Christ taught on the subject of origins just as readily as they accept His pronouncements on salvation, prophecy, and ethics. What did He teach concerning the creation of man? In Matthew 19:4 He asked the Pharisees, “Have ye not read that He which made them at the beginning made them male and female?” In a parallel passage in Mark 10:6 we find these words: “But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.” It is clear from this that man and woman were created as such from the very outset. Evolutionary theory, on the other hand, holds that the earliest creatures were of a single sex that gradually differentiated into male and female over hundreds of millions of years, No one has ever devised a workable scheme to explain how this could happen, but the idea is retained as an article of faith because it is necessary to the theory.

There is never an instance recorded in Scripture where the Lord Jesus Christ uttered a single word in contradiction to the Genesis record. In Luke 17:26-27 He indicated that the worldwide deluge of Noah’s time was a sober historical fact, and used it as an example to warn of judgment to come. Finally, He put His stamp of authentication on all the Mosaic writings when He said, “For had ye believed Moses ye would have believed Me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe My words?” (John 5:46-47).

There are those who claim to believe the New Testament but not the Old. One who has “done his homework,” however, realizes that they cannot be separated. The teachings of the New Testament are based upon the precepts and examples of the Old. Numerous instances of this are seen in the writings of Paul. To the church at Corinth he wrote, “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (II Corinthians 11:3). It is manifest that the apostle Paul, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, was compelled to regard the Genesis account of the creation and fall of man as authentic and trustworthy, though many other intellectuals of his day scoffed at it. Also in Paul’s epistles we find two clear-cut references to the fact that Eve was formed from Adam’s side: “For Adam was first formed, then Eve” (I Timothy 2:13); “For the man is not of the woman, but the woman of the man” (I Corinthians 11:8).

Anyone who pretends to be able to harmonize evolution and Christianity fails to understand either one. Those who know the Scripture best declare that there is no room for evolution. And those who are most conversant with evolutionary theory state that there is no room for religion or the supernatural. Evolution, they say, is a blind, experimental, trial-and-error type of process. An omniscient God would have no need of experimentation. The two ideas are indeed incompatible. Only those who take an unstudied and superficial approach to the question can succeed in effecting any kind of imagined “harmonization.”

The doctrine of the creation of man by the direct act of God, then, is not only intellectually defensible from a scientific standpoint; it is a Scriptural necessity, Science and Scripture furnish two distinct guideposts pointing the way to creation as the true explanation of man’s origin. How tragic it is that so many fail to see either one!

The late George Mulfinger, Jr. earned his B. A. in chemistry and his M. S. in physics. He served as a Professor at Bob Jones University, teaching astronomy, geology, physics, philosophy, and logic. He served on the Board of Directors of the Creation Research Society and co-authored a series of creation science textbooks.

  1. R. Whitelaw, “Time, Life, and History in the Light of 15,000 Radiocarbon Dates,” Creation Research Society Quarterly, June 1970, p. 60. []
  2. J. C. Whitcomb, Jr., The Early Earth (Winona Lake, Indiana: Baker Book House, 1972), pp. 105, 106. []

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