Whoops! Two or more species from one kind! Isn’t that evolution?
Some evolutionists certainly think so. After I participated in a creation-evolution debate at Texas A & M, a biology professor got up and told everyone about the flies on certain islands that used to interbreed but no longer do. They’ve become separate species, and that, he said, to a fair amount of applause, proves evolution is a fact—period!
Well, what about it? Barriers to reproduction do seem to arise among varieties that once interbred. Does that prove evolution? Or does that make it reasonable to extrapolate from such processes to real evolutionary changes from one kind to others? As I explained to the university-debate audience (also to applause), the answer is simply no, of course not. It doesn’t even come close.
Any real evolution (macroevolution) requires an expansion of the gene pool, the addition of new genes and new traits as life is supposed to move from simple beginnings to ever more varied and complex forms (“molecules to man” or “fish to philosopher”). Suppose there are islands where varieties of flies that used to trade genes no longer interbreed. Is this evidence of evolution? No, exactly the opposite. Each variety resulting from reproductive isolation has a smaller gene pool than the original and a restricted ability to explore new environments with new trait combinations or to meet changes in its own environment. The long-term result? Extinction would be much more likely than evolution.
Figure 22
Figure 22. Change? Yes—but which kind of change? What is the more logical inference, or the more reasonable extrapolation, from our observations: unlimited change from one kind to others (evolution), or limited variation within kinds (creation)? Given the new knowledge of genetics and ecology, even Darwin, I believe, would be willing to “think about it.”
Of course, if someone insists on defining evolution as “a change in gene frequency,” then the fly example “proves evolution”—but it also “proves creation,” since varying the amounts of already-existing genes is what creation is all about (Fig. 22).
If evolutionists really spoke and wrote only about observable variation within kind, there would be no creation-evolution controversy. But as you know, textbooks, teachers, and television “docudramas” insist on extrapolating from simple variation within kind to the wildest sorts of evolutionary changes. And, of course, as long as they insist on such extrapolation, creationists will point out the limits to such change and explore creation, instead, as the more logical inference from our observations. All we have ever observed is what evolutionists themselves call “subspeciation” (variation within kind), never “transspeciation” (change from one kind to others). (Fig. 22.)
Evolutionists are often asked what they mean by “species,” and creationists are often asked what they mean by “kind.” Creationists would like to define “kind” in terms of interbreeding, since the Bible describes different living things as “multiplying after kind,” and evolutionists also use the interbreeding criterion. However, scientists recognize certain bower birds as distinct species even though they interbreed, and they can’t use the interbreeding criterion at all with asexual forms. So, both creationists and evolutionists are divided into “lumpers” and “splitters.” “Splitters,” for example, classify cats into 28 species; “lumpers” (creationist or evolutionist) classify them into only one!
Perhaps each created kind is a unique combination of non-unique traits. Look at people, for instance. Each of us has certain traits that we may admire (or abhor): brown hair, tall stature, or even a magnificent nose like mine. Whatever the trait, someone else has exactly the same trait, but nobody has the same combination of traits that you do or I do. Each of us is a unique combination of non-unique traits. In a sense, that’s why it’s hard to classify people. If you break them up according to hair type, you’ll come out with groups that won’t fit with the eye type, and so on. Furthermore, we recognize each person as distinct.

figure 9
We see a similar pattern among other living things. Each created kind is a unique combination of traits that are individually shared with members of other groups. The platypus (Fig. 9), for example, was at first considered a hoax by evolutionists, since its “weird” set of traits made it difficult even to guess what it was evolving from or into. Creationists point out that each of its traits (including complex ones like its electric location mechanism, leathery egg, and milk glands) is complete, fully functional, and well-integrated into a distinctive and marvelous kind of life.
Perhaps God used a design in living things similar to the one He used in the non-living world. Only about a hundred different elements or atoms are combined in different ways to make a tremendous variety of non-living molecules or compounds. Maybe creationists will one day identify a relatively few genes and gene sets that, in unique combinations, were used to make all the different types of life we see. It would take a tremendous amount of research to validate this “mosaic or modular” concept of a created unit, but the results would be a truly objective taxonomy that would be welcomed by all scientists, both creationists and evolutionists. We might even be able to write a “genetic formula” for each created kind, as we can write a chemical formula (a unique combination of non-unique atoms) for each kind of compound.
But why should we be able to classify plants and animals into created kinds or species at all? Stephen Gould,25 eloquent evolutionist and acrimonious anti-creationist, writes that biologists have been quite successful in dividing up the living world into distinct and discrete species. Furthermore, our modern, scientific classifications often agree in minute detail with the “folk classifications” of so-called primitive peoples, and the same criteria apply as well to fossils. In other words, says Gould, each type has a recognizable reality and distinct boundaries at all times and all places: “A Quahog is a Quahog,” as the title of his editorial reads.
“But,” says Gould, “how could the existence of distinct species be justified by a theory [evolution] that proclaimed ceaseless change as the most fundamental fact of nature?” For an evolutionist, why should there be species at all? If all life forms have been produced by gradual expansion through selected mutations from a small beginning gene pool, organisms really should just grade into one another without distinct boundaries. Darwin also recognized the problem. He finally ended by denying the reality of species. But, as Gould points out, Darwin was quite good at classifying the species whose ultimate reality he denied. And, says Gould, Darwin could take no comfort in fossils, since he was also successful in classifying them into distinct species. He used the same criteria we use to classify plants and animals today.
In one of the most brilliantly and perceptively developed themes in his book Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, Denton26 shows how leaders in the science of classification, after a century of trying vainly to accommodate evolution, are returning to, and fleshing out, the creationist typological concepts of the pre-Darwinian era. Indeed, the study of biological classification was founded by Karl von Linne’ (Carolus Linnaeus) on the basis of his conscious and explicit Biblical belief that living things were created to multiply after kind, and that these created kinds could be rationally grouped in a hierarchical pattern reflecting themes and variations in the Creator’s mind.
“Actually,” concludes Gould,27 “the existence of distinct species was quite consistent with creationist tenets of a pre-Darwinian era.” (Emphasis added.) I would simply like to add that the evidence is also quite consistent with the creationist tenets of the present post-neo-Darwinian era. In Darwin’s time, as well as the present, “creation” seems to be the more logical inference from our observations.
But what about Darwin? He tried to explain “design without a Designer” on the basis of selection and the inheritance of traits acquired by use and disuse (pangenes), but Pangenesis failed. The neo-Darwinists tried to explain “design without a Designer” on the basis of selection and mutation, and mutations failed. The post-neo-Darwinists are turning to “hopeful monsters,” instead of simple mutations, and to “survival of the luckiest,” instead of selection. These new ideas have little basis in observation or scientific principle at all, and it remains to be seen whether the evolutionist’s faith in future discoveries will also fail.
One thing is for certain: if evolutionists had to prove their case in court, evolution would be thrown out for lack of evidence. That’s the conclusion of two insightful lawyers, Norman MacBeth (Darwin Retried28) and Phillip Johnson (Darwin on Trial29). Neither man is arguing for the Bible; both are simply writing in their field as experts in the rules of evidence and the rules of logic. I’ve had the pleasure of hearing Phillip Johnson, Professor of Law at the University of California (Berkeley), challenge college students to weigh the so-called evidence for evolution and to consider alternatively the concept that life (and, hence, each of their lives) is instead the gift of Intelligent, Purposeful Design.
The evidence is forcing evolutionists to admit the severe inadequacy of mutation and selection,but these same processes are being picked up and used by creationists. What would Darwin say about that? Would he object to his ideas and observations being used in Biblical perspective? Darwin did muse occasionally about the role of a Creator. But, of course, we’ll never know whether he would be willing to consider the Biblical framework as the more-logical inference from our present knowledge of genetics and ecology. We can be sure of this, however: a man as thoughtful and devoted to detail and observation as Darwin was, would be willing to “think about it.”

References

  1. Gould, Stephen Jay, A Quahog is a Quahog, Natural History, August/September 1979. Also published in: Species Are Not Specious, New Scientist, August 2, 1979. Return to text.
  2. Denton, Michael, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, Burnett Books, London, chapters 5–9, 1985.Return to text.
  3. Gould, Stephen Jay, A Quahog is a Quahog, Natural History, August/September 1979. Also published in: Species Are Not Specious, New Scientist, August 2, 1979. Return to text.
  4. MacBeth, Norman, Darwin Retried, Gambit, Boston, 1971. Return to text.
  5. Johnson, Phillip, Darwin on Trial, Regnery Gateway, Washington D. C., 1991. Return to text.
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"Punctuated Equilibrium" is yet another Darwinist concept, put forth as a reason why evolution is not observed.  Supposedly in this scenario, organisms are stable and then suddenly evolve, which is why we do not see a continuum of transitional forms in the fossil record.   Kind of like "hopeful monsters" in that there is no explanation for the idea, it just saves Darwinism from having to explain the lack of transitional fossils in the fossil record and the lack of evolving organisms today.

As to court cases, the Darwinists quickly try to turn any comparison of Darwinism and Creationism into a fight between "science" and "religion."  This is an unscrupulous but often successful tactic by which judges who are not terribly familiar with the scientific aspects of the case are fooled into thinking Darwinism is science and Creationism is not.  In truth, both are based on worldviews first and the evidence being the same, it is the interpretation of evidence that separates the two.   If Creationism is a religion, then Darwinism is equally so.  If they are scientific endeavors, then they both have the same evidence and it is only a matter of which interpretation you will endorse.  Darwinists use censorship and black-balling and lies to avoid allowing the evidence to be compared fairly.   Care to guess what that might be?

Natural Selection - A Creationist's Idea


According to Loren C. Eiseley, Benjamin Franklin Professor of Anthropology and the History of Science at the University of Pennsylvania before his death, "the leading tenets of Darwin's work — the struggle for existence, variation, natural selection, and sexual selection — are all fully expressed" in a paper written by creationist Edward Blyth in 18351 (emphasis added). Unlike Darwin, however, Blyth saw natural selection as a preserving factor rather than as "a potentially liberalizing" one. According to this under-appreciated naturalist, the conserving principle was "intended by Providence to keep up the typical qualities of a species." Atypical variations, to use Eiseley's words, led to the animal's "discovery and destruction."2
Eiseley, not a creationist, wrote that "Blyth is more than a Darwinian precursor, he is, instead, a direct intellectual forebear. . . ." In Eiseley's estimation, Blyth "belongs in the royal line . . . one of the forgotten parents of a great classic." On the same page, Eiseley also affirmed that "Darwin made unacknowledged use of Blyth's work."3
Editor Kenneth Heuer concluded, "this is Eiseley's discovery." Darwin had "failed to acknowledge his obligation to Blyth."4 He did acknowledge others (and even Blyth peripherally), but, as Eiseley demonstrates persuasively, Darwin for some reason chose not to credit creationist Blyth with the key element in his theory — natural selection.
In addition to providing the reader with a chapter on Edward Blyth written by contemporary Arthur Grote, Dr. Eiseley furnished essays written by the creationist himself — essays that most assuredly were read by Charles Darwin. They originally appeared in The Magazine of Natural History in 1835, 1836, and 1837. Examples of how this naturalist honored his Creator are provided.
In the first, The Varieties of Animals (pp. 97–111), Blyth considered, among other things, changes in animal coloration. The mountain hare, for example, becomes white in winter, "hardly to be discerned upon the snow." On the same page Blyth wrote:
There has been, strangely enough, a difference of opinion among naturalists, as to whether these seasonal changes of color were intended by Providence as an adaptation to change of temperature, or as a means of preserving the various species from the observation of their foes, by adapting their hues to the color of the surface. . . . The fact is, they answer both purposes; and they are among those striking instances of design, which so clearly and forcibly attest the existence of an omniscient great First Cause.5
It is sad that such language would be disallowed from many if not all nature journals today — especially if written by a living naturalist. It is refreshing, however, to read of a naturalist who credits the Creator with concern for His creatures. Words of the Creator Himself come to mind:
Then said the LORD, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not labored, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night: And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than six score thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle?6 (Jonah 4:10,11) (Emphasis added.)
The next essay7 reveals a naturalist's heart bent in reverence before his Creator:
It is the grand and beautiful, the sublime and comprehensive system which pervades the universe, of which the sun and planets are but a portion, and which, to return to ornithology, is so well exemplified in the adaptation of the ptarmigan to the mountain top, and the mountain top to the habits of the ptarmigan; which suits the ostrich to the arid desert, the woodpecker to the forest, and the petrel to "the far sea wave." It is the majestic and admirable system by which all nature works so beautifully together, and to which all that our external senses reveal appertains. It is the system which, exquisite and intensely interesting in all its minutest details, is, if possible, even more so in its complicated relation; by which, by the unity of design pervading which, all is demonstrable to be the workmanship of one omnipotent and all-foreseeing providence, under the beneficent dispensation of whom naught that ever exists or occurs stands isolated and alone, but all conduce and work admirably together for the benefit of the whole; by whose all-wise decree it is ordained, that, while the lofty and sterile mountain peak attracts the clouds, which in winter, in consequence, precipitate themselves upon it in the form of snow, it should cause itself to become clad in the hue of all others the most calculated to prevent its internal temperature from being farther reduced, and itself from thereby becoming an increased source of cold by radiation to all around; while, at the same time, the concretion of snow itself, instead of deluging the country round with superfluous moisture, is thus retained for a time upon the heights, not only to shelter the more tender organized productions of the mountain from severer cold, but also to furnish, by the action of the summer sun, a due supply of water, when needed, to the fountains and rills which irrigate and fertilize the more level country; there having done its part, to flow on to the mighty reservoirs of the ocean, again to arise in clouds, and to fulfill again its appointed rounds, with perpetual never ceasing energy, while the world endures.8
Dr. Eiseley wrote that "Edward Blyth was one to remember the color and shape of a darting bird or a fox going over a hedge. He saw things hiding, shifting, changing. He had what today we would call a photographic memory."9 He also stated explicitly that Blyth was "a special creationist."10
An evolutionist himself, Eiseley viewed Blyth as laboring under an "eighteenth-century limitation upon organic divergence which blinded so many early nineteenth-century thinkers.11 Who really are the blind, however? Geneticists know that there are definite boundaries to divergence. Try as they might, evolutionists cannot change one species into a viable other; they still have blind trust that it occurred many times in the past, however.
In Blyth's third essay, Psychological Distinctions Between Man and Other Animals, the author wrote that animals "evince superhuman wisdom, because it is innate, and therefore, instilled by an all-wise Creator. Indeed, the unpremeditated resource of animals, in cases of emergency, is oftentimes decidedly superior to that of man; and why? Because they need not experience for their guide, but are prompted to act by intuition."
Again, how very out-of-place these words would seem if appearing in secular publications today! Evolution is a religion for many, and departures from this godless orthodoxy are not generally tolerated. Reference to the "all-wise Creator" violates the godless orthodoxy of evolution.
The apostle Paul wrote long ago that men wickedly suppress the truth.12 Why Darwin did not credit Edward Blyth more generously may not be known by us until He who unlocks the secrets of men's hearts returns and exposes all. Eiseley made a strong case, however, that Darwin benefited from Blyth especially in one key area but apparently chose not to credit the naturalist for this key insight.
Dr. Henry M. Morris wrote, "Although he was bound to know of the natural-selection writings of both Paley and Blyth, Darwin gave them no credit for their contribution to his own misuse of their perfectly appropriate use of natural selection."13 One could conjecture that Darwin, knowing Blyth to be a special creationist, did not want to associate his doctrine with anything that could be understood within a creationist framework of thought.
Creationists have had and still have little problem with the tenets of natural selection. Small variations having survival benefit within created kinds, such as coloration of peppered moths or differently shaped beaks, no more disprove creation than fossils in sedimentary rocks disprove a universal flood. The Creator not only displays tremendous variety of kinds but also enormous variety within created kinds. How to transmute from one species to another is the problem, however. It was impossible for Darwin to get past that barrier, and it is just as impossible today.
As has been noted, Blyth wrote of an "all-wise Creator" and the "omniscient great First Cause." This Creator and First Cause, the Lord Jesus Christ, will return someday and reveal what has been hidden. He said, "Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known."14 The Bible says that "Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts."15 "Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do."16
As Blyth intimates, however, the Creator is also compassionate in His dealings. Not only does He make it possible for animals to adapt "as a means of preserving the various species from the observation of their foes," as Blyth wrote (above), but He supremely extended Himself in love and compassion toward us who are made in His image. Knowing our rebellious hearts, He bore our sins on the cross, giving us a covering — His cloak of pure righteousness.
May the greatest Naturalist, who arrays the flowers of the field with more glory than that of Solomon, touch many more hearts, not only with the wonders of His intricate creation, but also with the preciousness of His bounteous love.
References
1 Loren Eiseley, Darwin and the Mysterious Mr. X (New York: E.P. Dutton, 1979), p. 55.
2 Ibid., p. 56.
3 Ibid., p. 59.
4 Ibid., p. x.
5 Ibid., p. 108.
6 Jonah 4:10, 11.
7 Seasonal and Other Changes in Birds, pp. 112–140.
8 Ibid., pp. 116–117.
9 Ibid., p. 49. (Edward Blyth's sister wrote of him, "Never was any youth more industrious; up at three or four in the morning, reading, making notes, sketching bones, coloring maps, stuffing birds by the hundreds, collecting butterflies, and beetles — teaching himself German sufficiently to translate it readily, singing always merrily at intervals," p. 170.)
10 Ibid., pp. 68,69.
11 Ibid., p. 54.
12 Romans 1:18.
13 Henry M. Morris, The Long War Against God (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1989), p. 158.
14 Matthew 10:26.
15 I Corinthians 4:5.
16 Hebrews 4:13.
* Paul G. Humber, A.B., M.S., B.D., teaches at the Haverford School, Haverford, Pennsylvania