I was recently invited to give a talk on intelligent design to a college philosophy class on Darwin, Marx, and Freud. I have known the professor for a number of years and had presented to his classes before. He usually has had me come in and present the case for intelligent design (ID) at the start of the section on Darwinism. The professor is an atheist but interested in discussing various views. I can only imagine what he has to say about my presentations afterwards; no doubt he tries to counter my arguments.
The TASC newsletter article Fossils examined the fossil record as evidence in support of the theory of evolution. 1 The conclusion of that article, as well as of several evolutionists themselves, was that the fossil record did not provide evidence to support the theory of evolution. We might think, "Well, that doesn't matter, since evolution is so strongly supported by the genetic evidence." However, is it really? Let's look and see. We will look primarily at the genetic evidence.
Is abiogenesis irrelevant?
The idea of life arising from non-life is known as abiogenesis. It might be argued that abiogenesis is not evolution and thus is irrelevant in a discussion of evolution. The line of reasoning is that evolution deals with how life evolves from pre-existing life via natural selection, or how more complex life arises from simpler life, which does not involve the origin of life. This is still life giving rise to more complex life, not life arising from non-life. Therefore, the argument goes, the question of how life arose from non-life is not part of evolution, and is therefore excluded from any discussion of evolution as not being relevant.
How many of us have heard that evolution is supported by the evidence of the fossil record or that millions of fossils prove evolution had to have occurred? It has been assumed that as more research accumulated and more fossils were discovered, there would be increasing evidence to support the thesis of Darwin that evolution of species has occurred. In fact, it now seems to be popular to think that this has indeed occurred, and that new fossil evidence - including evidence of whale evolution, etc. - now has lent increased support to the theory of evolution. We will look at the results of the research in the years following Darwin. We will also examine claims or statements from scientists, including evolutionists, about this fossil evidence. Let’s look at this and see what the actual fossil evidence tells us!
Isaiah 45:18 (KJV)
For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.
Genesis 8:22 (RSV)
While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.
Editor's Note: Dr. Van Dyke is Professor Emeritus of Botany at North Carolina State University, having taught there 38 years. He is a cofounder of TASC and has served in several positions, including chairman. In this article, Dr. Van Dyke relates how his academic and spiritual histories reflect God's faithfulness. As the scripture teaches: "for them that honor me I will honor" (1 Sam 2:30).