Evolution or Creation:
Which Shall It Be?
by David Trexler
Orbiting the moon on Christmas Eve of 1968, the astronauts of Apollo 8, the first manned flight around the moon, gave a surprising Christmas message to the people of the earth.
As the telecast neared its end, Colonel Borman said, "Apollo 8 has a message for you." With that, Major Anders began reading the opening verses from the Book of Genesis about the creation of the earth.
"In the beginning," Major Anders read, "God created the leaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the waters."
Captain Lovell then read, "And God called the light day, and the darkness He called night."
Colonel Borman closed the reading with "And God called the dry land Earth: and the gathering together of the water called he Seas: and God saw that it was good." (Based on Genesis 1:1-10).
The astronauts showed their belief in God, the Creator (Maker), who made the world according to the Scriptures despite the general and widely accepted view, the idea of evolution.
And more than that the 1960's were the time of low interest in spiritual matters-the era of "God is dead." Getting impressed by what the astronauts had seen in space, the moon to which they were traveling was described as "vast, lonely, and forbidding sight...not very inviting place to live or work." However, in contrast, at every turn of the orbit of the moon, Apollo 8 crewmen welcomed the beautiful view of their home, the earth, which was about 230,000 miles in distance.
Like a tired and lost traveler in a hostile environment of desert, Lovell saw the earth as a "grand oasis in big vastness of space."
Through this experience, they admitted that God is the only answer to the questions of the beginnings and the existence of every living and non-living matter in the universe such as stars, sun, moon, earth, and life upon the earth.
The Christmas message from Apollo 8 not only brought hope and good will to all mankind on earth but it also may have caused a great blow to the very foundation of the idea of evolution.
Probably many people, especially those who were Christians who were having problems in deciding whether the Bible and its account of Creation were true or false were encouraged to hear this hopeful message that strengthened their faith in God and His Book.
I remember very well when I was in college as I was struggling to accept the creationism or not, this message touched my heart that God is the Creator (Maker) of all living things. The 1960's were the time when the general church attendance decreased and the doctrine of Creation was mostly left out of public schools curricula across the nation. Most scientists felt that the Biblical account of Creation was unscientific and untrue. The theory of evolution had its "heyday."
One great British anthropologist I met when I was in high school, L. S. B. Leakey, made exciting news to this scientific world about his "very exciting" discovery of what he then called "our earliest man" — the supposed "missing link" between the modern man and his ancestor, the ape-like creature. Its discovery "proved" the idea of evolution which is the opposite of the Biblical account of Creation of man — "God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him." Genesis 1:27.
Furthermore, many geologists continued attacking the idea that God made the heavens and the earth in six days because their studies showed that the evidences and findings in the earth conflicted with the Biblical view.
Generally, the geologists believed that the earth and its living things evolved through millions of years, not through creation in six days.
Since the Christmas message of 1968, what has happened to the faith in God and His teaching of the beginnings of earth and its living things?
Thirty-four years later, church membership is growing rapidly, and more and more evolution scientists are becoming creation scientists.
Modern technologies and advancement of knowledge increase our understandings that clearly show that this world and everything was created by Someone who has the designs for every purpose in this universe.
Further, scientists have found more supportive evidences in the earth that clearly show that everything was made by God according to the Bible.
Thus, faith in God and His Book, the Bible, is growing stronger than ever before.
However, the argument is still going on. Both sides, the evolutionist and the creationist, claim victories supporting their view. The basis of the argument is whether this world and everything upon it was made by themselves, or in other words, evolved through years from the simple to the more complex, or were specially made by a Master Designer (God) according to the Bible.
Presently, there are three different opinions concerning the beginnings and existence of the universe. They are:
Special Creation. A belief that God alone made the world and the life upon it completely and in an instant during the first week of this earth's history. This idea is based on the Bible.
Theistic evolution: A belief that God finished His creative works through a long period of time by natural processes (evolutionary stages).
Atheistic evolution: A belief that the world was made "by accident" — the natural processes without any help from God.
Obviously, the atheistic view eliminates God as the source of all things. And because of the impossibilities and weaknesses in its view, it is losing support by more and more scientists. However, many people, especially those with liberal Christian views accept the theistic view which is the compromise between the idea of evolution and the Bible. Instead of the literal (real) six days of the week in creation, this doctrine teaches that one day can be explained as many years.
But, it fails to notice that the Bible does not accept man's interpretations. We must realize that we should accept only the Bible as the authority to interpret the evidences, facts, and meanings around us.
The Bible is God's way of showing His will and plan of salvation to us. It has history to help us understand how the heavens and the earth began.
Clearly, the Bible does not accept both, the atheistic teachings and the theistic teachings. Regarding the atheistic teachings, the Bible says, "the fool hath said in his heart, there is no God." Psalms 14:1.The theistic view does not agree with the six days of creation found in Genesis 1:1-31.
In fact, God created complete, various things in an instant through His word. "By the word of the Lord were heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. For he spoke, and it was done: he commanded and it stood fast." Psalms 33:6, 9.
There is nothing in the Bible that gives us any reason to believe that everything improved from the simple form to a more complex form. This shows that the atheistic and theistic evolution ideas do not come strictly from the Bible.
We can believe in faith that God made the earth completely and in an instant (special Creation). "Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear." Hebrews 11:3.
All through the ages the Bible stood firmly on its position while man's ideas and theories have been constantly changing. This has caused some people to lose confidence in the theory of evolution. The new discoveries have increased our faith in the truth of God's word.
Finally, creation actually speaks of God: "For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse." Romans 1:20.
Despite the controversy (argument) on the origins and existence of the earth and heaven, without doubt, we can see that there is Someone who is behind all the wonderful things.
If you are not sure about this, I invite you to "lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things" (everything in earth and heaven) and you may agree with the message spoken by three well-educated and experienced astronauts Who truly saw that "the heavens declare the glory of God: and the firmament showeth his handiwork." Psalms 19:1.