Saturday, October 30, 2010

Answers in Genesis, not in Apes (Part 1)

Darius and Karin Viet, apparent newcomers to Answers in Genesis, have an article on that website titled "Why Did God Create Apes with Human Features?"  The article is in response to a question from an Australian reader: "If God knew that apes and the like would be used so passionately by evolutionists to support their theory, why did he create them?"   The authors give the answer that God did so to demonstrate His creative power, though this doesn't really address the question of why God didn't demonstrate his power by creating something that wouldn't fit so well a theory of common ancestry of humans and other species (well, in the end they do address that question: "because He wanted to;" creationism has often been cited as a science-stopper, but the Viets seem content to let it be a theology-stopper too.

The authors do hint at another possible divine motive: "belief in man as a highly-evolved ape may become a sign of judgment when man honors the creature rather than the Creator."  God created apes, in other words, so that if we were minded to reject or question His revelation in the Bible, we would have something to pin our evolutionary hopes on.  Or perhaps God made apes to teach us to trust his word rather than our own judgment on the evidence.  On the other hand, the authors don't seem to think (or at least, don't concede) that evolution has anything significant to do with evidence in the first place.
Third, God focused on the disease (sin) instead of the symptom (evolution). Since the all-knowing God knew evolution would deceive many people, why did He create creatures like apes, which evolutionists would use to support their dogma? If God had not created apes, however, evolutionists would just find another “common ancestor.” The problem is not the evidence, but sinful man’s faulty interpretation of the evidence made in a futile attempt to avoid recognizing the Creator, Law Giver, and Judge. Instead of not creating things Satan would warp for evil, God sent the remedy for the deadly disease of sin: the Lord Jesus Christ.
The authors may be new, but they seem very familiar with the Answers in Genesis mantra: evidence by itself proves nothing; it all depends on the "presuppositions" you bring to the evidence.   Now, this comports rather ill with the fact that many Christians, even evangelical Christians, nonetheless find the evidence compelling, even when their presuppositions include the idea that Jesus Christ is Lord.

The authors assert that "similarities between organisms" do not constitute evidence for evolution.  They speak of "the evolutionary idea of homology," although homologies were named by the anti-Darwinist comparative anatomist Richard Owen, and were recognized earlier: Pierre Belon du Mans identified homologies between a bird skeleton and a human skeleton in the 16th century, and such (still unnamed) homologies formed the basis by which Carolus Linnaeus, in the 18th century, classed whales with mammals rather than fish, and arranged thousands of species in the nested hierarchy that Darwin and later evolutionists were to use as the principal line of evidence for common ancestry.

"Homologies" are not just similarities: they are similarities that are not required for similarity in function.  The evidence for evolution is not just that apes and monkeys are, in their faces and hands and bodies, eerily reminiscent of human beings, but in that there's no obvious reason that they ought to be.  Why, e.g. should humans (most of us, anyway) have a plantaris tendon, corresponding to the tendon that in apes and monkeys clenches the feet into a fist, but which in humans does not even connect to the foot bones?  There's even less reason, other than common ancestry, why, e.g. humans should have more genetic similarities to chimpanzees  than gorillas do, or why humans and other old world anthropoids should share identically-disabled GULO pseudogenes.


  1. “Because God wanted to.”

    Love it. The perfect answer to everything!

  2. FYI... I'm sorry that Ray "pulled the plug" on your review of his "book".
    I continue to enjoy reading your posts and look forward to the day that Ray wakes up from his self-delusion... though I doubt it will ever come.