There is a growing trend in today’s Christian culture to begin to accept the theory of evolution. They call it Evolutionary Creation or Theistic Evolution and its a theological concept that is both very flawed, and very wrong. Before I begin to go more deeply into this idea of Theistic Evolution, I first want to make the distinction between Old Earth Theology, OET, and Theistic Evolution. While the two are related, and Theistic Evolution is dependent upon also adhering to Old Earth Theology, the arguments that I will write about are regarding Theistic Evolution will not apply to OET.
Theistic Evolution is the belief that God used the process of evolution to create man and all other forms of life on earth. Its a belief that the predominantly held theory of Evolution is compatible with scripture.
Old Earth Theology: OET
Old Earth Theology does not try to merge scripture with the theory of evolution, but rather, just says that the earth is older than most creationists believe. OET says that in Genesis 1:1, a day is not a day, but an age, thus allowing some to believe the earth can be millions of years old. (The day-age interpretation).
While I personally believe both of these beliefs are incorrect, I think Theistic Evolution contains more flaws in it. While one could still believe in the basic doctrine of salvation and OET, adhering to Theistic evolution and some of the basic doctrines of the Christian faith of becomes much more difficult.
Imagio Dei: Created in the Image of God
If we begin to adhere to an idea of Theistic Evolution, we begin to lose the idea that we are created in the Image of God. While the Christian Evolutionist would rebut this point by saying God used evolution to make us in the image of God, I would have to respond with “Which image?” If God created Man in his image, which version or evolutionary step was Man actually in the image of God? Are we in the image of God at this homo sapien stage? If not, do we still have a couple more evolutionary steps to go? If that is the case, is God using evolution to make us more and more like God? If so, what happens to the doctrine of sanctification?
Doctrine of Sanctification:
Is the Doctrine of Sanctification destroyed through the belief in Evolution? I would answer absolutely. First, consider what sanctification is.
“Sanctification is, first, a position of honour to which God has appointed His people. Second, it is a state of purity, which Christ has purchased for them. Third, it is an inducement given to them by the Holy Spirit. Fourth, it is a course of devoted conduct in keeping therewith. Fifth, it is a standard of moral perfection, at which they are ever to aim” A.W. Pink
Sanctification is at its heart, a state of purity. If the theory of evolution is indeed true, then given enough time, Man would evolve into this state of purity, and if that is the case, than the only thing preventing man from being sanctified, or for that matter justified, would be God not allowing enough time. This idea puts God as a barrier to salvation rather than the way to salvation.
Doctrine of Original Sin:
The doctrine of Original Sin is paramount to the Christian faith. The reason God had to send his son, Christ, to die was for our sins. Without this doctrine, Christ’s death is no longer a loving act of salvation but an act of divine child abuse. According to scripture, Man became fallen after a choice of man. As soon as that choice was made, man fell, and knew that he had fallen.
“For it was not fit that His creature should blush at the work of his Creator; but by a just punishment the disobedience of the members was the retribution to the disobedience of the first man, for which disobedience they blushed when they covered with fig-leaves those shameful parts which previously were not shameful.” –St. Augustine of Hippo.
The reason why man should be shamed is because of his fallen state and image, and Man fell by an action of his own. If we begin to believe in the theory of Evolution and that in some extent, God either created man fallen, or, the image of God is the first living organism to have evolved.
Doctrine of Justification:
By looking at the two previous doctrines that conflict with the idea of Theistic Evolution, one can easily see that the Doctrine of Justification immediately follows. If the doctrine of original sin doesn’t exist, than there is not reason for man to be justified, and if knowing that man can evolve into purity, than there is also no reason for their to be a doctrine of Justification. This is the most foundational doctrine of the Christian Faith. Without this doctrine, there is no Gospel. To believe in Theistic Evolution is to deny the need of Christ and the power of the Cross.
This fundamental difference cannot be overcome or reconciled. One cannot rationally adhere to the theory of evolution and the essential doctrines of the Christian faith I mentioned above.
Now, I now that my arguments above are not perfect and I welcome your thoughts. As stated in the About This Blog page, part of the reason I blog is to allow me to organize the thoughts and arguments I have and gather feedback.