This movie requires Flash Player 8. Download Flash Player 8

Issue Features
View this issue online as it looks in print
Discovery Magazine 4/1/2002

Misunderstood or Missing Link?

For decades, evolutionists taught that coelacanths (SEE-la-kanths) became extinct about the same time dinosaurs did (supposedly 65 million years ago). Man was told that these fish gradually developed legs and began to live on Earth, and then sometime later became extinct. Evolutionists thought that these fish were the “the missing link” between water and land animals. Similar to the ape-like creatures that supposedly evolved into humans, these fish were said to have evolved into land animals millions of years ago. 

Until 1938, evolutionists believed that humans and coelacanths could not possibly have lived at the same time. These creatures were known only from the fossils that these same evolutionists claimed were many millions of years old. But then, on December 24, 1938, the scientific world was “rocked” when an unidentified fish five feet long and over 100 pounds was brought to shore in South Africa. It was caught in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar (an island off the eastern coast of Africa). The fisherman who netted the fish (having no idea what the creature’s proper name was) called it “the great sea lizard” because its pectoral fins looked more like little legs. Once scientists examined this strange creature, however, they confirmed what formerly was thought to be impossible—a coelacanth had been caught in modern times!

Since 1938, over 100 additional coelacanths have been caught. In 1952 they were seen swimming near the Comoro Islands in the Indian Ocean. Another population was found in 1998 off the coast of Indonesia. Surprisingly, local Indonesian fishermen were quite familiar with this fish, having been catching them for years—even though scientists were totally unaware they lived in that region.

Modern day coelacanths look exactly like their fossil counterparts (which are mistakenly dated as being millions of years old). The fact that these modern creatures have stayed the same as their fossilized ancestors is no surprise to Christians. The Bible teaches that animals reproduce “after their kind” (Genesis 1:21,24). No fish ever gradually developed over millions of years into land animals, any more than ape-like creatures ever developed into humans. Coelacanths are still coelacanths, and apes are still apes.

Copyright © 2010 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

This document may be copied, on the condition that it will not be republished in print unless otherwise stated below, and will not be used for any commercial purpose, as long as the following stipulations are observed: (1) Apologetics Press must be designated as the original publisher; (2) the specific Apologetics Press Web site URL must be noted; (3) any references, footnotes, or endnotes that accompany the article must be included with any written reproduction of the article; (4) textual alterations of any kind are strictly forbidden; (5) Some illustrations (e.g., photographs, charts, graphics, etc.) are not the intellectual property of Apologetics Press and as such cannot be reproduced from our site without consent from the person or organization that maintains those intellectual rights; (6) serialization of written material (e.g., running an article in several parts) is permitted, as long as the whole of the material is made available, without editing, in a reasonable length of time; (7) articles, excepting brief quotations, may not be offered for sale or included in items offered for sale; and (8) articles may be reproduced in electronic form for posting on Web sites pending they are not edited or altered from their original written content and that credit is given to Apologetics Press, including the web location from which the articles were taken. Further, documents may not be copied without source statements (title, author, journal title), and the address of the publisher and owner of rights, as listed below.

For catalog, samples, or further information, contact:

Apologetics Press
230 Landmark Drive
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
Phone (334) 272-8558

Web Store

Defending the Faith Study Bible

We are very excited to announce the NEW AP Defending the Faith Study Bible now available.

Featured Audio


Click the following link to visit our Multimedia section.

Featured Audio