Descended from the Apes?

  Ever since the Scopes trial, 75 years ago, public schools have adopted a rigid orthodoxy. Evolution has been taught as scientific fact. We were not created by God but descended from apes and evolved through an unsupervised process. Over the years, literally millions of children have seen the film Inherit the Wind, which falsely portrays Christians as unthinking censors. Try arguing with most biology teachers and you'll soon discover that they are rigidly doctrinaire. Science is science, creation is just religion, and it has no place in the classroom. Last year's debates in Kansas sent the media into spasms of Christian bashing. We were called all sorts of things for suggesting that the flaws in evolution ought to be taught alongside the arguments for it. But what has all this fury and doctrinaire evolutionism produced? Well, a new poll from the Yankelovich group, reported in Saturday's New York Times, shows that 79% of Americans believe creationism does have a place in public school curriculum, after all. Half the respondents said evolution is "far from being proven scientifically," and 68 percent said it's possible to believe in evolution while also believing in God's agency in creation.
All of this proves, of course, what the Scriptures teach. Romans makes it clear that the truth about God is made known to us by His invisible attributes, that His creation bears witness, so the truth is evident to all of us. It may be politically incorrect, but, as the polls show, people know the truth. Look what happened under Communism. People were drilled over and over: "There is no God." But even communist oppression could not stop the Church from spreading. In fact, the greatest ontological argument for the existence of God is that our hearts know, as Francis Schaeffer said, that "He is there, and He is not silent." It has been amusing to see the spin being put on these new findings. The anti-religious People for the American Way, who paid for the survey, emphasize that a majority supports the teaching of evolution. What they would prefer to dismiss, however, is that a nearly equal number support teaching "that God created humans and guided their development." In all the spin we also find one extraordinarily profound admission: evolutionists are acknowledging that both views cannot be true. For years they have argued, "Well, if you want to believe in God, that's fine. We'll assume that God planted souls in us at some point in time." But now, in response to the Yankelovich poll, there's a new terror that people might really know the truth, and they're arguing that these two views are incompatible—which, of course, is true. This is a victory for Christians that our friends in Kansas ought to take to heart. We can also take confidence in knowing that those who believe in intelligent design of the universe are not the tiny minority that some would have us believe. The majority of the public believes what we do. Despite 75 years of being taught otherwise, we know the truth. And that's good news, indeed.


Chuck Colson



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