Genesis, Evolution and Natural Selection

This page is an excerpt from
Cycles of Salvation History

by Ulrich Utiger

Page 2

A Medieval vision about the similarity between natural and social hierarchy
A Medieval vision about the similarity between natural and social hierarchy

Page description
Genesis 2-3 is perfectly compatible with Darwin's concept of evolution except for natural selection, which is inconsistent with creation and the law of increasing disorder.

Contents of this page
The biological evolution
Natural selection
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Short summary of the previous page
In The First Account of Creation it was shown that thanks to the multi-reference it is possible to extract much more information out of the first chapter of Genesis than with a literal interpretation and to solve all apparent contradictions with modern science. The same interpretation by multireference will now be applied to Genesis 2-3.

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THE LIFE CYCLE OF THE ANGELS AND HUMANS

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THE FIRST ACCOUNT OF CREATION


  

 

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The Second Account of Creation

The biological evolution

A celestial and terrestrial Adam

The second account contains a lot of multiple references in a similar way than the first account. This leads to some apparent paradoxes, because the different references are intermingled with each other in the same text, somehow like a light source that is composed of different light waves. This is why these paradoxes must be solved by decomposing the text into the different events it is referring to, just like the light of a star can be decomposed into its color spectrum, which allows the determination of its different chemical compounds.

At first sight indeed, the second creation story looks like a fairy tale: all animals are eating herbs (Gen 1:30), there is a tree of life as well as a tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the garden of Eden (Gen 2:9) and a speaking snake is telling lies to Eve (Gen 3:1-5), to mention just a few paradoxes. Let us challenge this impression and decompose the story into its different references. The snake, for example, is clearly an animal. So it should be unable to speak, at least in human languages. However, being used to multiple references from the first creation story, we may also conclude that the snake represents both an animal[9] and a fallen angel. Now, if the snake stands for an angel, we have to suppose that the same is true for the other animals. This therefore points to an analogy between the hierarchy of the animals and that of the angels.

If the animals have such a twofold meaning, then even more Adam. In fact, this can also be concluded from the anachronistic order of the evolution, for the creation of matter is mentioned first (Gen 2:4-6), then follows the creation of man (Gen 2:7), the plants (Gen 2:8-9) and the animals (Gen 2:18-20) in this same order. Consequently, the creation of man is quoted too early. This anachronism reminds us of those we have already met in the first account, that is, the apparent creation of the planet Earth in the beginning (see here), the creation of the light and the plants before that of the Sun (see here), as well as the anachronism of the birds (see here). This is why the anachronism of man must be understood in the same manner: the term Adam does not only refer to the first man but also to the angels.

If there is a celestial and terrestrial Adam, the same must be true for the paradise. We have already mentioned in Celestial and terrestrial plants that the first account describes a celestial paradise. So the surrealistic impression of the garden of Eden with trees that give spiritual food and vegetarian predators comes from the fact that it hints to Heaven where everyone, and possibly every species, lives in peace with each other (Isa 11:1-9). On the other hand, the terrestrial paradise is hinted to by the four rivers Pishon, Gihon, Tigris and Euphrates, which exist in Mesopotamia as will be discussed in Several paradises and floods.

The double meaning of Adam solves another severe paradox: “And the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being” (Gen 2:7). Are we to take this verse literally, as do creation scientists, and to believe that species were created independently of each other? Not at all, because Genesis must not be taken literally and regarded locally without considering the context in which it is placed. Since Adam has a meaning as angel and man, his creation out of dust (Gen 2:7) must be understood as a kind of compromise between the creation of the angels out of naught and of man out of a former species. This compromise has to be understood in the context of the whole material, biological and spiritual evolution making part of four levels:

  1. Naught, from which God created the angels is at level zero.
  2. The big bang is at level one, opening the evolution of the inanimate matter.
  3. Level two is opened with the biological evolution, flora and fauna, the animated creation.
  4. Finally, humans make part of level three, the creation supplied with reason and responsibility, sharing it with the angels.

The average between level zero (naught), from which the angels issued, and level two (fauna), from which man issued, is level one, matter.[10] This is why Adam, according to the multi-reference, was formed with dust, because this person not only represents the first man but also the angels, as figure 10 suggests. Hence, the dust of the garden of Eden is multi-significant and its sense changes according to the context to which it is applied. Thus, it also designates the species from which humans descend. If this interpretation of Genesis 2:7 is valid for the first humans, it is straightforward that it is also valid for all other vegetal and animal species because they were created out of the ground as well (Gen 2:9; 2:19). This view that all species descend from previous ones is a widely accepted Darwinian concept called common descent, which took place over millions of years of evolution.


Figure 10: The multi-reference of Genesis 2:7 referring both to the creation of the angels and man.

Monogenism

The majority of paleontologists had for a long time supposed that hominization took place on a large scale, that is, by slow genetic changes from one generation to the next happening at several places on the planet. This process called polygenism was thought to be responsible for the appearance of the different human races. There is indeed a slow genetic change from parents to their children, and from them to their children, and so on. But this change does not cross the borders of species, otherwise it would not be possible to determine clear boundaries between species. A species is defined as a group of animals among which sexual reproduction is possible. So if there was a linear genetic change between species, reproduction between some animals of two different species close enough to each other would be possible while for others it would not. This, however, cannot be observed in nature. Hybrid reproduction is either possible for all animals between two different subspecies or it is not possible at all, independently of the fact that the vast majority of hybrids are sterile.

If one supposes that God created every species in a direct intervention, then the biological evolution must be discrete, that is, occurring on distinct steps from one species to another. Discrete evolution implies that God only intervened when a new species appeared.[11] Assuming that God created new species out of former species, one can speculate about how exactly this happened? Did he transform an adult male and female of a former species into a new one? This is doubtful! It is more probable that they were simply born from a female of a previous species. This implies that God’s intervention happened at the conception in the very beginning of the existence of a new species. This way, a couple of a male and female would have risen by their mother, which is possible because of the relatively slim differences from one species to the next. In fact, DNA varies very little from one species to the next, which also shows strong evidence for common descent.

This implies that the first humans were born from a mother belonging to an anterior species of Homo sapiens but of the same genus Homo. This could be Homo erectus or Homo neanderthalensis depending on whether one considers the latter a species apart or a subspecies of Homo sapiens. In any case, the real first couple of modern humans were born from a mother who was capable of feeding, educating, and giving them the love necessary to develop behavior worthy of the first humans. The ancestors of humankind must consequently have been rather close to modern humans, probably capable of primitive language, for instance. This argument also weights against adult creation because any living being must undergo a learning process in order to survive in a given environment. Arguing that God “preprogrammed” these capabilities is not very convincing because it would be too tricky: the newly created species would have a created memory of events that never took place, would remember situations that never occurred, and so on.

That the first humans were born as babies is supported by another argument: as we shall see in The incarnation prefigured by Adam, the creation of Adam contains numerous allegorical elements pointing, among others, to the birth of Christ, who is prefigured by Adam. So since it is well known that Christ did not come into this world as an adult but was born from a woman as a baby, one can conclude that Adam was born likewise because of this prefiguration.

The view that humanity stems from single parents is called monogenism (or monogenesis), by opposition to polygenism, and was sustained in the 1980s by Allan Wilson’s research team, which compared mitochondrial DNA in people of different races and concluded from the variation of the genetic data that all modern humans descended from one mother in Africa about 150’000 years ago. This does not mean, however, that the very first parents lived at the same time because mitochondrial lineages can be broken when a mother has only sons. But in any case it shows strong evidence for monogenesis and that south-eastern Africa is the cradle of humanity.

The incarnation prefigured by Adam

Analogous processes of monogenism can be observed in the whole of evolution: the physical universe was formed from a very small point, a singularity, at the big bang; all planets were born from the same solar disc; the continents issued from a single one before their continental drift; life was only formed on Earth and nowhere else[12] and from a single cell; new species emerged from a single couple of a previous species; Adam and Eve are the ancestors of humanity; Abraham is the ancestor of Israel; Christ is the First-born of all Christians. At the example of the big bang, these events may all be called singularities. They appear when something completely new enters into existence and prefigure monogenesis, which thus seems to be an universal law reflecting the image of the unique God.

Since these singularities go back to the earliest event of the physical world, the big bang, the entire physical, biological and spiritual evolution announce Christ, who is the accomplishment of all things. In fact, we have already seen that the six levels end with Christ and increasingly announce him (see figure 9). He is the last step of all the evolution. This is why the creation is full of prefigurations of the incarnation and redemption. As a consequence, the parallel between Adam and Christ confirms common descent, not only of all humans, but of all species because Christ was born from a woman becoming thus the first born of the big family of Christians.

This is also why Genesis 2:7 refers to Jesus’ birth, for the breath of life that God blew into the nostrils of Adam prefigures the Holy Spirit, by which Jesus was conceived (Lk 1:35). And the garden of Eden, whose pure, not cursed earth (Gen 3:18) is taken to form Adam, is an image of Mary, the Mother of Jesus.[13] So the evolution did not end with the first man but continued until the incarnation, which is the key event of the entire evolution prefigured by many sub-events because God created this world in view of our redemption by the sacrifice of the cross.

Because of the same analogy, Mary is prefigured by the prehuman mother who gave birth to Adam. At the same time, she is prefigured by Eve, who is “the mother of all living” (Gen 3:20) and who is possibly born of the same pre-human mother. In this case, Eve would be the sister of Adam, despite their later conjugal relationship. This status of brother and sister, and their conjugal relationship prefigure the relationship between Christ and Mary, who is the Bride of God since the Holy Spirit, who is God, conceived Jesus in Mary (Lk 1:35). However, Christ is also God, more exactly God-man. This double nature of Jesus means that he is not only the son of Mary but at the same time her Spouse,[14] which is prefigured by the conjugal relationship of Adam and Eve as shown by figure 11:

Father Mother Child(ren)
Birth of Adam God the Creator prehuman mother Adam
Birth of humanity Adam Eve humanity
Birth of Christ Holy Spirit Mary Mother of God Christ-man
Birth of Christians Christ-God Mary the New Eve Christians

Figure 11: The analogies between Adam / Eve and Christ / Mary

Mary thus became the Mother, similar to God the Father, of all humans born in the faith in Jesus, who is the First-born of this new generation (Lk 2:7; Col 1:15; Rev 1:5), the eldest of a multitude of brothers (Rom 8:29) born and adopted by the Holy Spirit (Gal 4:4-7), the new Adam exempt from all sin (Rom 5:12-19). Finally, Mary is also a child of this big family because she has herself faith in her son. In this sense, Jesus and Mary are also brother and sister, like Adam and Eve. It seems that this way the word of Jesus “Whoever does the will of God, that person is my brother, and my sister, and my mother” (Mk 3:35) is perfectly realized.

Natural selection

The atheistic background

As we have seen, Genesis supports discrete evolution. This contrasts with continuous, gradual evolution, or phyletic gradualism, backed by the concept of natural selection, which is supposed to produce new species through the accumulation of small random mutations in the genetic code over millions of years. Such a pure atheistic view on evolution, which reduces life to an exclusively material biochemical process exempt from any kind of divine intervention, is contested by all sorts of creationist beliefs. While it is not the place of this book to go through the pros and cons of all these theories, it is nevertheless possible to get a solid opinion about the subject using common sense in the light of faith.

First, let us consider the argument, unrefuted over the decades, of the lack of intermediate forms between species in the fossil record. It is true that for some species there are apparently intermediate forms. A few examples, however, cannot support a theory about a process that is supposed to have worked globally. On the other hand, almost every species contradicts natural selection because they are nearly all very different from the closest ones.

Evolutionists have tried in many ways to counter this argument. For instance, one often argues that the discovered fossil record is far from being complete, which may be true. However, it shows that species appear abruptly and then remain stable over a long time, as suggested by figure 12. Even Darwin himself was aware of this problem, since he wrote in his famous work On the Origin of Species about Lingula, a genus of still living shells:

Species of different genera and classes have not changed at the same rate, or in the same degree. In the oldest tertiary beds a few living shells may still be found in the midst of a multitude of extinct forms... The Silurian Lingula differs but little from the living species of this genus.

Phyletic gradualism implying slow change from one species to another as opposed to discontinuous evolution observed in nature implying stasis after speciation.
Figure 12: Phyletic gradualism implying slow change from one species to another as opposed to discontinuous evolution observed in nature implying stasis after speciation. Punctuated equilibrium is one of some more recent theories trying to conciliate this observation with natural selection (source: Punctuated Equilibrium).

He also wrote: “If species really, after catastrophes, created in showers […], my theory is false.[15] With showers, he refers to the Cambrian explosion, an epoch during which most present day phyla appeared over a very short period from about 540 to 490 Ma after hypothetic significant changes in the environment. As a response to such issues, neo-Darwinists invented a lot of speculative theories like allopatric speciation[16] and punctuated equilibrium[17] and so on in order to solve these problems. However, such theories mix scientific facts with extrapolated speculations. Afterwards, these theories are handled on the same level as quantum mechanics or general relativity. This is completely fallacious because not only are these physical theories based on a coherent mathematical structure but they are also observed in nature innumerable times, whereas evolutionary theories sustaining natural selection neither have any solid mathematical evidence nor are they directly confirmed through observations.

This raises the question why the concept of natural selection could survive from Charles Darwin up to the present? The answer lies in atheism: since one expects of educated people that they give explanations for the origin of humankind, atheists find themselves in the dilemma of providing natural explanations for the origin of species. Hence, because not all educated people believe in God, natural selection is still in discussion at the present day. This is why they have no other choice than to stick to their dead materialistic ideology, getting enmeshed in absurdities they try to hide behind the complexity of life.

While it is acceptable that, in the first place, one should investigate natural phenomena on the ground of possible natural explications rather than relegating them straightaway to the realm of supernatural forces, it is not scientific at all to postulate the non-existence of God and deduce from this that natural selection in any case must be responsible for speciation even though it is not yet proven. This is just pseudo-science not based directly on facts but on their extrapolation. This is why natural selection has primarily nothing to do with science but with beliefs, that is, with anti-religion, and involves the same irrationalism and indoctrination as practiced by certain religious groups that Darwinists despise for their lack of scientific adherence.

The contradiction with the law of increasing disorder

The obsession with which Darwinists are subjugated by the idea of an inventive and life-generating nature closely resembles the medieval obsession that perpetual motion machines can be constructed. Such machines are supposed to continually deliver more energy than they consume, which is absurd because it violates two fundamental laws of thermodynamics: (1) conservation of energy and (2) increase of disorder (or entropy). The Parisian Academy decided in 1775 to stop examining any proposals concerning plans of perpetual motion machines, which however did not prevent some people from inventing new projects over and over again, even up to the present.

The same obsession is linked to the hypothesis of natural selection: just as perpetual motion reflects the desire to handle an inexhaustible energy as only God holds it, the belief in natural selection manifests the wish to possess creative forces as only God owns them. Both represents the old wish to take the place of God, so it is just absurd wishful thinking, as discussed in The life cycle of the angels and humans. As it happens, natural selection suffers from the law of increasing entropy: left to itself, nature generates more and more disorder and only intelligent beings are able to make order within a system. For instance, humans are able to construct sand castles on the shore, but the ocean destroys them. The probability that waves breaking on the shore may build sand castles is not very little, it is just plain equal to zero. Even infants understand without difficulty this fact.

Of course, evolutionists cannot be convinced by this simple argument, arguing that the Earth is not a closed system, that order can come out of chaos[18] or that natural selection is acting like Maxwell’s demon and so on. However, what is needed here is just common sense and, above all, honesty, teaching us, for instance, that a complex system like the eye cannot be produced by coincidence. The evolution of the eye was mentioned by Darwin himself as being difficult to understand by natural selection. However, he could not stick to this simple reality and prevent himself from speculating how it could nevertheless have happened by indicating functional intermediate steps from light sensitive cells to a camera-like eye. Such biased extrapolating logic is typical for evolutionists, because they do not radically apply the hypothesis of random processes, according to which there is no reason to suppose that the different components of the eye were straightforwardly put together in the right way.

In fact, there are no living beings in the fossil record that tried out eyesight, even though it evolved step by step. But these steps were always fully functional without any unused features. If chance is behind speciation, however, one should expect a completely random evolution, that is, species with useless lenses somewhere on the body, non-functional retinas somewhere else, as well as pupils, irises, eyelashes, and so on. Finally, one should find species trying to combine these components, without speaking of the fact that these parts are themselves already complex systems and that nature should have achieved the same task for a second eye both symmetrically placed on the head and linked to the most complex organ, the brain, without which the new seeing species would still have been completely blind.[19]

On a more philosophical and theological level, the law of increasing disorder symbolizes the fact that everything under the heavens returns to death and decay. It is the physical expression of the corrupt human nature leading inevitably to social degradation. Humankind constantly needs the intervention of God in order to be renewed and liberated from sin. On the level of biological evolution, this is expressed by divine intervention at every apparition of a new species because nature was thus repeatedly renewed.

Why natural selection does not work

The most striking differences between species is not their outer form but on the level of certain anatomical details. There are, for example, no intermediate forms between the scales of reptiles and the feathers of birds or the hairs of mammals, both of which stem from reptiles.

These differences are directly related to the fact that it is not by one single mutation that a new species is brought forth. Several changes are necessary, which causes an insurmountable problem to nature: DNA is a molecular language that contains entities comparable to those of human scripture, that is, letters (the four nucleotides), words, phrases, paragraphs, sections, and so on. Random mutations within this language occur on the level of the letters. This is why it can intuitively be figured out that mutations are disturbing rather than favorable for an organism that suffers them, for DNA is a very balanced code in which the least changes are disadvantageous in most cases, as stated by biology professor Klotz.[20]

Human DNA contains about five billion nucleotides, which would give 10’000 middle-sized books of about 500’000 letters each. When we compare DNA with a computer program and change any bit (a 0 or 1) in the compiled code, there is a high risk that it will crash thereafter. By adding another function to the program, not just one bit but many bytes must be added or modified. Yet, successive changes of single bits, although the good ones, do of course not successively provoke the desired results because the new function only works with the complete code. Partial code produces nonsense. This is like an access code to a computer. It is evident that the computer only accepts the complete code. So it does not suffice that only one or more letters are right. Even if only one single letter is wrong the computer considers the entire code wrong.

DNA works similarly: mutations are like spelling errors. Humans are able to guess the meaning of a word or phrase containing errors, but the cell does not have this level of intelligence and is disturbed when they occur. So even if a mutation made part of a good code, which in itself is already improbable enough, it would mostly have disturbing effects, since errors in the biological language equal non-understanding and only the complete code makes sense. This is why the need to accomplish a very large number of mutations to produce a new species would have become deadly for intermediate species, since mutations occur singly in most cases. This is why over the number of needed mutations, they become lethal in any case and the probability of natural selection theoretically and practically reduces to zero.

Random mutations generate precisely the contrary of what they are supposed to generate from the Darwinist point of view: natural deselection, preventing species from transmission of disease and safeguarding the original genetic code, which was created by God. This is supported by the fact that the cell nucleus involves sophisticated processes in order to safeguard the original code. For instance, the female X-chromosome proceeds to compare code after recombination and thus repairs defective code, say mutations. Some years ago, the male Y-chromosome was believed to be limited in repairing its code, which caused Oxford University geneticist Sykes to proclaim that the human race will extinct in about 125’000 years unless women find a way to reproduce themselves without men.[21] According to more recent research however, it seems that the male Y-chromosome is safe from corrupting.

Other reasons to discard natural selection

Apart from these scientific reasons, there are many others more difficult to prove, but not less convincing. Since the idea of natural selection is based on the survival of the fittest, life should only be in possession of features that are related to mere survival. Life, however, especially human life, overflows with characteristics that have nothing to do with mere survival. How can our ability for humor, or the fact that we like music and art, be related to natural selection? Or emotions such as love, which is easiest toward weak individuals like children and animals? Love and respect for others are “mechanisms” that bring no advantages for individual survival, but nevertheless we consider them the highest human characteristics.

One may argue that such virtues are good for social survival, which is more successful than individual survival. Therefore, abilities for social life as well as for art may have been developed by natural selection because they make us happy and willing to live. Also the love for children may just be something that has emerged from natural selection because otherwise nobody would want to raise children and the survival of the human species would have been compromised. The problem with this point of view is that love would only be virtual, just a means to an end, a kind of illusion caused by some biochemical processes. It would not be real. However, life only has sense if real love exists. This is why there must be a Creator: just as most people came into existence because their parents decided to have children as an act of love, also God created the world, all species and the human race through real love. Life only has sense if it came into existence through the real will and love of God.

Of course, one can also claim that life does not necessarily need to have a sense. But if life has no sense, does it have a value then? Does it need to be protected? Is it worth to be lived? Is there still the need for any ethics and rules for social behavior? It becomes much more difficult to answer these questions affirmatively by supposing that life has no sense. The view that life has no sense leads to social corruption and self-destruction, which is in contradiction with life. From this can be concluded that life has a sense, because this is the only view that protects and generates life.

In fact, because of its essentially philosophical dimension, the theory of natural selection may cause dramatic social behavior praising the law of the strongest following the example of nature. This so called social Darwinism is the basis of Western imperialism and of most older or newer racial ideologies. It is also indirectly responsible for the two World Wars as various studies show.[22] In Germany for instance, the National Socialists were strongly inspired by social Darwinism in their intention to “purify” the planet of the presence of the Jews. Such negative social behavior against life caused by sticking to the concept of natural selection by survival of the fittest is also a valid reason why it cannot have produced life.

Natural selection is the exact opposite of reality: the aim of evolution was to bring forth humankind created in the image of God. So it is evident that God’s will was to bring creation increasingly to an independence reflecting his own at the highest possible level. In the domain of speciation, this independence implied that it was not the new species that had to adapt itself to the environment, as supposed by Darwinists, but the environment, so as to offer an adequate life basis for a future species, in other words, so as to produce an ecosystem allowing the new species to live on its own. The rise of the oxygen-producing cyan bacteria, for example, prepared the environment for heterotrophic micro-organisms, which themselves later became an environmental component for another species, and so on. Thus creation does not at all exclude evolution, which inversely cannot be used to exclude God from the process of evolution. By professing this opinion, one does not entrench oneself “in a refusal of this or that scientific reality”,[23] one is simply convinced that reality is not as simple as some people conceive it.

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