False Attacks on Creationists

Gen 1:1 NET.  In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Wisdom 1:13-14 RSVA  because God did not make death, and he does not delight in the death of the living. (14) For he created all things that they might exist, and the generative forces of the world are wholesome, and there is no destructive poison in them; and the dominion of Hades is not on earth.

Heb 11:1-3 LEB  Now faith is the realization of what is hoped for, the proof of things not seen.  (2)  For by this the people of old were approved.  (3)  By faith we understand the worlds were created by the word of God, in order that what is seen did not come into existence from what is visible.

by Jesse Dominick

A common attack against Creationists is that they are anti-science, or that they are positing an antithesis between religion and science.

evolving-evolution02However, I think, in fact, the exact opposite is true. I think it is actually the evolutionists that put a divide between theology and science. On the theistic evolutionist side there seems to be a denial that theology has implications for science, and that science has implications for theology.

How often do we hear or read: "The Bible isn’t a science book!" (1) or "The Fathers weren’t scientists!"?

Well, no one is claiming that the Bible’s purpose is to teach science or that the Fathers first concern was the natural sciences, but I don’t know how we could reasonably claim that the two spheres have no overlap. Our faith is entirely centered on the Person of the Incarnate Word – Jesus Christ. Christ took on flesh, died in the flesh, and rose again in the flesh. He is the Creator Who created the physical world which Orthodox Christianity understands to be a good creation. We do not believe in the dualistic/Manichean/Gnostic divide between the material and the spiritual. We do not posit a chasm between the two.

But theistic evolutionists seek to harmonize Orthodoxy and evolution by either giving full credence to science, or by not really accepting either theology or science. In the Patristic Tradition the entire world was created as Paradise, and as man is the crown of creation, it was only once man sinned that all of creation was plunged into a state of corruption. However, if man is a product of evolution then there was necessarily death long before man sinned. The two are incompatible and so some theistic evolutionists deny that physical death is a result of sin – they lend full weight to science and none to the Fathers.

This makes Christ’s physical Incarnation, death, and Resurrection in the flesh, and our own resurrection from the death which we proclaim in the Creed, nonsensical, and places the blame for death on God.

Furthermore, the Fathers do not doubt the historicity of Adam or that he was truly the first and only person on earth, being uniquely created – having no parents – along with Eve. However, evolution happens in populations, not individuals, and so some theistic evolutionists deny that there ever was a historical Adam and Eve, but rather, they simply symbolize all of mankind.

However, since the Patristic understanding of anthropology and the consequences of sin comes from their literal reading of the Genesis story, this tactic is obviously problematic. Others seek to harmonize Orthodoxy and evolution by not really accepting either. Some, acknowledging that Orthodox Tradition teaches that man physically dies only as a consequence of sin, will accept that man was indeed physically immortal until he sinned, but still wanting to be hip scientifically they will deny that animals and plants also die as a result of man’s sin. This still blames some death on God although the Wisdom of Solomon 1 teaches that God is not the author of death of any kind.

So they accept Orthodox Tradition only partially, and they only accept evolution partially. From an evolutionary-scientific standpoint it is absurd to believe that man alone was somehow immortal. Evolution is one big, connected picture and I know of no scientist who can scientifically justify saying that one species was somehow exempt from the chain.

Also, recognizing that the Scripture and Fathers teach the historicity of Adam and Eve, some theistic evolutionists will say that the bodies of Adam and Eve were part of a larger species, but the two of them were called out to receive through the breath of God a spiritual aspect. But this denies that man as we know him is truly a result of evolution.This also posits that there are, or were, creatures that are exactly like humans physically speaking, but lacking the rational aspect of humanity. This is also absurd scientifically speaking.

So in order to try to "harmonize" Orthodoxy and evolution, one either disregards the Patristic Tradition and sides completely with science or one denies both Orthodoxy and science and creates his own illegitimate amalgamation. Thus, theistic evolutionists are the ones truly placing a divide between religion and science.

Creationists, however, recognize that theology has implications for science, and science has implications for religion. The Orthodox tradition accepts the historicity of the Genesis account and teaches that death is a result of sin. Thus, we know when death entered this world. This has clear scientific implications. However, if evolutionary science is true and death has existed for billions of years and evolution happens in populations, then the Orthodox understanding of anthropology and sin and death need a radical change. Again, Orthodoxy is not dualistic. The physical and the spiritual realms necessarily interact and have implications for each other. Understanding this, the Creationist realizes that Orthodoxy and science must truly harmonize, and so both Orthodoxy and evolution cannot be true, because, as even the evolutionists’ tactics demonstrate, they are incompatible. Since the understanding of God’s act of Creation and the Scriptural account thereof, and of the paradisiacal life belongs obviously to the Church, the Orthodox Tradition is held as true, and thus evolution cannot be maintained to be true. However, against the frequent attacks of evolutionists, this does not mean that Creationists are "anti-science," for we recognize that true faith and true science will necessarily complement each other. We simply recognize that evolution is not true science.

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  1. Amen! Well put! I do not know how one redefines Genesis without calling into question everything from there through Revelation. Then every yod and tittle becomes subect to privy interpretation. I have no confidence in my ability to re-interpret the Bible correctly.
    But wait! I was told this creationist stuff was peculiar to the westernized church in North America!?!

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