What is theistic evolution?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
Theistic evolution is one of three major origin-of-life worldviews, the other two being atheistic evolution (also commonly known as Darwinian evolution and naturalistic evolution) and special creat...

July 01 2013 1 response Remove Vote Share Report

1355970312 Ron Ray
I've noted that there is a tendency to believe that there is a great time that occurred between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2, and/or the theory in which thousands or millions of years existed between the verses of scripture that describe the onset of creation. Theistic evolution, the gap theory, progressive evolution or other compromise positions are all ways that people and theologians have tried to fit millions of years into the Bible.

There are major problems with these theistic views. One problem is that theistic evolutionists are attempting to use science to interpret the Bible. Essentially this is a loss of faith in God's Word not trusting the scripture for a literal interpretation where it is warranted. In my opinion, these people have responded with more faith to the evolutionary world view of science teachers and have sought a way to justify the scripture by trying to make it fit science theory.

Another problem is that the Hebrew word for day (yom) used in conjunction with terms such as "morning", "evening", or a number indicates and is literally translated as a 24 hour day. After the first day of creation, Genesis 1:5 says, "And there was evening, and there was morning - the first day. So it is with verses 1:8, 1:13, 1:19, 1:23, and 1:31. These days are literal 24 hour days. Where this association is not present, the word yom can mean the sunlit part of a day (traveled by day), or just time in general (back in my day).

Stick to a literal reading of Genesis and everything makes sense. If you try to make the Bible fit the millions of years opinions, you compromise the Word and open the door for further compromise. Every Word of God is pure and true. Don't waste your time trying to make the Bible fit man's theories. Rather, use the Bible as a commentary on the behavior of man, and to interpret the world's condition. Suddenly, everything makes sense.

November 29 2014 4 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini ainsley chalmers Medical Research Scientist, devoted family man.
When I came to the Lord 43 years ago I was a theistic evolutionist who believed in God and the evolutionary process. At that time evolutionary belief had nothing to do with my newfound faith in God. How wrong I was. Scientifically we need to clear up some important matters.

1. Macro evolution means change from one kind to another (eg reptiles to birds). Darwin wrote about this in his book on the origin of species, though the idea was proposed years before by others. Taking this further, microbes changed to mice, then monkeys, and finally man through mutations and natural selection. This change cannot occur because mutations lead to death, not new biological types, and natural selection is a culling process that removes animal types not suited to the environment, and does not function at the DNA level.

Intermediate types are not seen in billions of fossils found. DNA is a very complex information system that could never give rise to new biological types. So macro evolution could never occur as evidenced by the fossil record and molecular DNA considerations. 

2. Micro evolution on the other hand is seen everywhere in our environment (eg different dog and cat types). These types are created by genes inherent in these animals and also mutations leading to a loss (not a gain) of information.

So, in short, if God used macro evolution then He would be going against His natural laws and the information in the bible that animals were created after their own kinds. Other bible findings speak against theistic evolution and confirm a young 6,000 years old earth. For example, if humans were 2,000,000 years in existence, then we would be extinct by now going by inter-generational mutation rates. Carbon 14 radioisotope in fossils, diamonds, oil and coal indicate an earth thousands of years old, not tens of millions. Many other examples of a young earth may be found in creation.com.

To conclude, belief in the bible account of creation is in line with scientific findings and this has greatly increased my faith belief in Jesus Christ, my Lord and Creator.

April 18 2021 4 responses Vote Up Share Report

Nils 1 Nils Jansma Missionary in San Diego California
What is theistic evolution? Like many Biblical subjects, there are many different views to almost every topic. Theistic evolution (TE) is no exception. One thing all the views seem to have in common is that God is creator and used various methods to facilitate all life with the ability to adapt to earth’s various environments. The extent of this adaptive power is the defining difference between most TE proponents. 

We are familiar with what we call micro-evolution as being changes in animal structure within very specific limits. Probably, the best example of this might be dogs because they are claimed to have the most adaptive gene-set of all living mammals. There are 340 recognized breeds with the potential for many more “designer dogs.” (labradoodle, cockapoo, puggle etc.)

If you imagine extrapolating the dog’s adaptive features over every living creature, originally designed to naturally accomplish God’s purpose over time, you have theistic evolution. This was not a made-up viewpoint to discredit the Bible. It was the unavoidable conclusions based upon the accumulation of centuries of observations. It roots go back to the ancient Greeks, Romans, Chinese and later medieval Islamic science. So theistic evolutionists, based upon ever increasing knowledge, are encouraged to see if their view can be harmonized with the Bible, the infallible word of God. To their full satisfaction, they have found this to be so.

Where Theistic Evolutionists differ one with another is the mechanism for change. The most radical devout TE believe that God ingeniously preprogrammed the universe to accomplish all that we have observed. This included the chemistry of life. They believe in the common ancestry of all life forms. However, they do not believe that change is based upon chance mutations. Change comes when the environment signals the genome that change is needed. God started it with the Big Bang and has had to do nothing since which includes “creating” Adam and Eve. They believe that Genesis Chapters 1-3 are metaphorical and not historical. From my perspective, I believe that this is a fatal flaw to this radical TE view.

I favor a TE view that God started the creation at the Big Bang with the seeds of the entire Universe already in place from the very beginning. The earth is the result of a very precise plan with nothing left to chance. That is the reason we appear to be the only location in the entire Universe where life as we know it could survive. However, time will tell if this opinion of mine is entirely true. During the process leading up to Adam and Eve, God through His heavenly agency, intervened countless times to insure a smooth path to the eventual creation of Adam and Eve. The intervention would require numerous “genetic modifications” to account for the millions or billions of species that have lived on the earth since the beginning. Clearly, such vast changes would involve the direct hand of God.

The mechanics of such interventions by God the Holy Spirit is described in the Bible. Mary, the mother of Jesus, had to have her genes altered to give birth a male child because she was a virgin. Her genes had to be modified to include all the attributes of Jesus which the Scriptures ascribe to the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:34-35) This process explains how life developed on earth that includes the eventual creation of Adam and Eve as unique creatures just as Jesus was a unique creation.

Criticisms of this form of Theistic Evolution are often based upon a misinterpretation of Scripture. Theistic Evolution gives us a good tool to successfully harmonize the Bible with the observed and experimental evidence. Young people just being exposed to said evidence as their education expands should be grateful to know that they can believe in most versions of Theistic Evolution without compromising their faith in God’s Word.

May 12 2018 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Grant Abbott Child of Father, Follower of Son, Student of Spirit
In my view Theistic Evolution theories cannot harmonize science with the creation account of the bible.

Theistic evolution says that God used billions of years to bring everything into existence. That it took millions of years to bring all living things into existence. In fact, it took the DEATH of billions of creatures to finally result in the appearance of human beings on planet earth.

But the biblical creation account says that all God’s creation was “good”, that his creation of humankind was “very good”. It was not until Adam and Eve rebelled against God’s only prohibition, that death entered the world and death of all living things has continued to our present day.

So let’s compare these hypotheses:

Theistic evolution says death brought humankind into the world.

Biblical creation says humankind’s rebellion against God brought death into the world.

The science of logic says that both these hypotheses cannot be true.

Because of death God prepared a plan of salvation to restore the gift of eternal life. If many early humans had to die before we got the human beings we know today, what’s the big deal about death.

But death is the big deal because it breaks our relationship with God which was the whole purpose of his creation and the reason why we needed a plan of salvation. Oh, death where is thy sting, Oh death where is thy victory?

October 07 2020 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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