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Why do so many people believe in evolution? How did the theory start?

 

Dear Digger Doug,

Why do so many people believe in evolution? How did the theory start?
—Colin Derringer,
Berea, KY

 

Dear Colin,

Excellent questions! Many believe that Charles Darwin came up with evolution and published a book on it in 1859, but he actually only came up with a new part of evolution at the right time to make evolution popular. A man named James Hutton had helped make a millions-of-years-old Earth popular with geologists in the late 1700s, which influenced a scientist named Charles Lyell (the “father” of modern geology) in the early 1800s, who, in turn, influenced Darwin to develop a theory of biology that agreed with an old Earth.

Long before Darwin, however, belief in some form of evolution had already existed—probably even by some before the Flood. After all, if a person does not want to believe in a Creator Who has done miracles, then he must believe in some form of evolution to try to explain the Universe without God (even though evolution still cannot actually explain the Universe). Since there have long been people who did not want to believe in God (Psalm 14:1), evolution has been around for a long time.

Some people believe in evolution because they do not want to believe in God, and evolution gives them a “respectable” excuse. Maybe they are angry with God for something that they blame Him for, or perhaps they just want to be able to sin without worrying about what God will do to them. Others have heard only about evolution and just haven’t heard about Creation yet, or believe that the Bible allows for evolution. Some believe in evolution because they feel pressured by other scientists, or because that is what “everybody” else believes. Whatever the reason, the evidence is clear: Creation, not Darwin’s evolution, explains the origin of life.


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