Friday, December 12, 2008

Making Sense of Life

Lately I've been reading about whether it's possible to see life as both the outcome of evolution and God. Or rather, whether it's possible to believe in evolution and still believe in God.

No Christian wants to let go of God altogether by embracing evolution as the only explanation for our presence on Earth.

As I read about and ponder these polar opposites, I sometimes look out on civilization and am amazed if only evolution is the explanation for the reality of the human brain. If that's the case, it defies explanation that so much complexity was the result of millennia of humankind's efforts. Our technological and cultural accomplishments are truly mind-boggling. Our potential for future achievements are equally astounding.

If God is responsible for evolution, then he is, alas, not the kind creator of the Bible. Evolution is successful only though violence and death. In no way can a committed Christian attribute these to God in spite of the fact that some Bible texts seem to attribute death and destruction to God under certain extreme situations, e.g., the Flood story and the final destruction of the impenitent.

What then to do about the conflicting demands of faith versus evolution? Would further study and reflection about evolution as the answer to our origins draw one closer to the God of the Bible or away from him? Unfortunately or fortunately, I find that the more I study about evolution and its survival-of-the-fittest motif, the more I want to get closer to God as revealed in the person of Jesus Christ. I need to suspend belief in the evidence of evolutionary history as that is the only way to continue believing and benefiting from a life time of approaching the God of the Bible.

I'm not saying the world was necessarily created in 6,000 years. I'm not saying that life isn't filled with too many mysteries to completely solve. I'm not saying I've finally arrived at the best situation that will resolve all these perplexing theories and their competition for my attention.

What I am saying is that I want to continue believing in God. Even more importantly, I want God to continue believing in me. The reason for this is that only as God continues believing in me will he continue helping and blessing me. For these realities I am very grateful. If only evolution were as kind then I'd love it in all its benign aloofness.

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