You might think this blogpost will be like any other combating the idea of evolution, but it isn't. I'm not a scientist, so I'm not going to discuss holes in evolution from that perspective. I do think there are philosophical holes in Darwinian evolution if it assumes naturalism within it, but I'm not going to talk about that today either. Instead, I want to approach it from a perspective that I don't see Christians talking about and should: that the adoption of evolution may be due to our being given over in judgment by God as a society.
Let me explain. Evolution is the story a lot of people put to the facts. It isn't fact itself. People who say this are philosophically naive in their distinctions of data and interpretation. For instance, the idea that we have a yoke producing gene is data, but what that means is going to be one's interpretation that is based upon one's presuppositions in one's methodology, which are themselves based on ultimate beliefs about the universe. In other words, interpretation of data (specifically speaking here of interpreting what may have happened in the past) is a function of beliefs. The data doesn't speak. We supply its voice with whatever story we have come to believe is most plausible given our presuppositions and ultimate beliefs.
Having said that, then, we need to understand that the story of evolution is a belief, not a fact. We use facts to bolster it, but these are interpreted facts--interpreted by our beliefs. So here's my question: Why do we believe it? This is where my extreme skepticism comes in due to my biblical understanding of the judgment of God on this side of death.
In Romans 1:18-32, Paul tells us that the wrath of God is not revealed to us on this side of death in fire and brimstone, but in giving us over to deception, specifically to a pagan understanding of the world and to sexual immorality (as well as other depraved practices that accompany it). I think it's important to look at the entire passage, so here it is below.
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,
because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them.
For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.
For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Professing to be wise, they became fools,
and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.
Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, that their bodies might be dishonored among them.
Because they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.
And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper,
being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; [they are] gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful;
and, although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.
Now, the text here tells us why their hearts/minds were darkened and how they became fools: they wanted freedom from the real God to pursue their own pleasures, so they constructed gods that were more accommodating. As a result, God gives them over to a depraved mind that convinces them all the more in the deceptions they constructed.
Now what is interesting here is that paganism is the result of wanting a life unbound by God. And as a result of that pursuit, God gives people over to it all the more. That is His judgment upon a person or society.
We are told in 2 Thessalonians 2:12 that those who did not both receive and love the truth are sent a deluding influence, a convincing deception, by God so that they would be convinced of the belief that allows for their wickedness. This, no doubt, is connected to Paul's discussion in Romans 1. In other words, the deluding influence, the convincing deception that God sends to them is paganism because they took pleasure in wickedness rather than believe the truth.
Now, you might be asking at this point, What does this have to do with evolution? Well, a lot actually. Paganism is the story that most culture's put to the facts. It is an alternate interpretation of the data that allows one to be free from the constraints of the real God and diminish His authority in his or her life. Although one can believe the story of evolution without doing this, evolution is our culture's story that it uses to do the same thing.
But more than this, evolution is a revived paganism in naturalistic form. Paganism is the belief that all things are connected and have evolved from the divine. It goes hand and hand with a type of pantheism or panentheism, where all gods, nature, and humans have evolved from a single divine entity. Evolution, then, is very old. In fact, the naturalistic form that we believe today in our culture was first proposed, not by Darwin, but by Lucretius, who developed it by applying the pagan idea of evolution to the natural world, in the first century B.C. Evolution is really our form of paganism. Just as we adopt Gnosticism in naturalistic, rather than in mythic, ways (e.g., Jungian psychology), we also adopt evolution in naturalistic, rather than in mythic, ways. In other words, we remove the mythic elements (gods evolving and what not) and keep the principle as the story we then use to apply to the data within a naturalistic worldview.
So the pattern for God's judgment upon a culture is an adoption of paganism that allows for a narrative of the world that is less restricting, thus giving us more freedom to pursue what by nature we would have known to be wrong. Hence, Paul discusses the acceptance of non-procreative sexual acts in marriage and homosexuality as two forms of our depravity as a way of discussing all forms of sexual immorality and depravity.
Hence, if we see a large acceptance of paganism in our culture ("paganism" within our naturalistic framework of course--although some have still retained mythical components and opted for pantheism or panentheism), along with a large acceptance of sexually non-productive acts like homosexuality, we ought to be immediately informed that the wrath of God is being revealed, and that our reading of the data (i.e., our interpretation of the world) is being skewed, not by the devil (although likely as a direct means), but by God Himself.
If this is true, then everything will be without doubt a proof of our form of paganism to us. Every detail our scientists and psychologists (the prophets of our time) read will be in all favor of that paganism and not at all, or at least far less likely, in favor of the God of the Bible's handiwork in creation--a handiwork that exalts and establishes His (again, the actual God of the Bible's) rule over our lives.
Now, maybe evolution is true, and it's just a coincidence that Western culture has been flung into darkness toward spiritual truths and is being given over to an all out acceptance of sexually immoral acts, like homosexuality; but there is also the evidence of the church's judgment that I think is important to talk about as well.
The churches in Western culture have largely turned away from solid biblical teaching to pursue ideas of God that are more palatable to the deceived masses. Because of this, genuine teachers of God's Word are constantly in jeopardy of being ousted from the pulpit, where people who present a more accommodating (less judgmental) God who just wants to help you out in your journey, are held up as the humble and godly men who are to be installed in the pulpit. I see this when I look at the job boards for pastor and other ministry opportunities in the church. I see this when I see numerous pastors either fired, not hired, or chastised for teaching the whole counsel of God rather than the parts that don't make us feel bad about the Christless pleasures we're pursuing in life. And I see this when I talk to the biblically and theologically illiterate people that have been raised in these churches, whose minds are cloudy, rather than clear, skies toward what is true). They have largely turned aside to myths (2 Tim 4:3-4). They practice the same types of depravity that the rest of the culture practices (and if they don't, they approve of it, as Romans 1 states), and that is always a sign in the Bible of God's judgment. In other words, they too are being darkened in their understanding and given over to practice and approve of sexually depraved lifestyles.
This doesn't mean I think the church is absent from Western culture. There are always those who have not bowed the knee to Baal, and Christ is clear that no matter how bad it gets, the gates of hell will not overtake the Church (even though it may overtake churches--little "c"--Revelation, Chapters 2 and 3). So I won't be throwing my hat in with false prophets who say that the church age is over any time soon, as that belief is completely unbiblical. But are a massive amount of the churches today having their candles snuffed out by Christ? I think that's clear.
Now, the reason why I bring up the importance of the condition of the Western church for purposes of understanding our larger judgment as a society is because the church is the light in the culture. But we are now a post-Christian culture, i.e., one that is not guided by its light. If the churches have been given over to judgment, and they are the light of the culture, then the culture has been given over to judgment as well, and our current beliefs and practices are a demonstration of the wrath of God upon us. We are being blinded because of our rejection of truth for the sake of living our lives apart from God's illumination of the world through revelation that exalts His role in the world and in our lives.
So why I am skeptical toward evolution? Not because I don't think it has explanatory power for the data. It does. It makes for a great story, and that story may be true. But given the present climate, where it seems clear to me that God is handing (and has been handing) the culture over to a darkened understanding and depraved mindset, all the while believing that we're smarter than the average bear, simply causes me to believe that evolution is the pagan story revived for purposes of destroying, rather than enhancing, our understanding of life. And the tendency for theistic evolutionists to go off into liberalism, which itself tends toward paganism, doesn't help my unbelief any. As such, I remain skeptical toward it.
But though He had performed so many signs before them, [yet] they were not believing in Him; that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spoke, "Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?" For this cause they could not believe , for Isaiah said again, "He has blinded their eyes, and He hardened their heart; lest they see with their eyes, and perceive with their heart, and be converted, and I heal them." (John 12:37-40)