Some evolutionists in their books comment that Christianity held-up the revelation and acceptance of a changing, evolving earth during the 1800’s…leading up to and following Darwin’s groundbreaking The Origin of Species published in 1859…as a result of the biblical concept of a static, unchanging natural world.
This is a classic example of a half-truth.
There are no verses in the Bible that state that the earth is static and unchanging. The Bible is silent on this subject.
The Bible does say that God is eternal, timeless, and unchanging…but says nothing definitive about the change-status of His creations over time…living or non-living in the natural world.
There was a consensus of opinion prior to 1859 amongst scientists, Christians, and the general public…that the universe and our earth are static and unchanging…because that is how the natural world phenomenally appears to people then and now today…change that is nonexistent when viewed within the span of our lifetimes.
A huge point to be made here regarding the various fields of scientific exploration…is that the orderliness and intelligibility of the natural world…intelligible to humans alone…has been in-place and fully functional on earth for 4.8 billion years since its beginning…waiting for the technological inventions of new types of equipment…and the populating of the earth of intellectually and morally capable beings self-motivated to conduct honest investigations into the explanations of the phenomenon in the natural world…which spawned the Scientific Revolution starting four or five hundred years ago.
One basic acknowledgement about the advancements of the modern Scientific Revolution…that can reasonably be made…is that the interaction of the two Industrial Revolutions and the Scientific Revolution propelled the creation of new fields of science…that were not possible hundreds and thousands of years earlier…due to the lack of equipment not invented yet to conduct in-depth scientific investigations.
The invention of eyeglasses, the telescope, the microscope, calculus in mathematics, the chemistry periodic table of elements…along with enumerable other technological innovations leap-frogging ahead of and then catching-up with each advancement in the sciences…explains more accurately the modern revisions in outlooks and biased prejudices that were shared equally by scientists, theists, and the general public.
One interesting example of this is the difficulty that Albert Einstein struggled with in his field equations regarding general relativity in 1916…that produced either an expanding or a contracting universe…a non-static universe that is not eternal and unchanging…a concept so disturbing to Einstein’s prejudicial bias favoring an unchanging and eternal universe…that he added a cosmological constant of repulsion to his equations to counteract the attraction of gravity…a decision influenced by his prejudicial bias for a static and unchanging universe…that overpowered his confidence in the accuracy of his own mathematical equations…a decision he later called “the greatest mistake of my life.”
If the static and unchanging appearance of the natural world was and is a universal observation…which rendered the acceptance of the revolutionary new concept of the expansion or the contraction of the universe…of being this strongly abhorrent observationally to one of the greatest scientists and thinkers in human history…what does this have to say about the Darwinist’s claims today that the natural world observationally exhibits enough obvious change to support macroevolution…exhibits enough change to assert that macroevolution is an obvious fact.
As I look out at the natural world today…I do not see radical change that would argue for macroevolution as scientific fact.
Without Einstein’s general theory of relativity, Hubble’s observation of an expanding universe, and the discovery of the uniform background radiation by Penzias and Wilson…the only thing that would tell me the universe had a beginning in time…is Genesis 1:1 in the Bible:
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”
I certainly could not deduce a beginning of the universe through phenomenal eyes-only observation alone…but like Edwin Hubble being able to look through the 100-inch telescope at the Mount Wilson Observatory…I would also need a background in astrophysics to be able to understand what I was looking at…to be able to draw the correct conclusions from the data I was observing.
Without the key contribution of the three-volume book-set published in 1830-33 by Charles Lyell entitled: Principles of Geology…having the full subtitle of: “Being an attempt to explain the former changes of the Earth’s surface, by reference to causes now in operation”…we would have absolutely no reason to take a harder look at the incorrect interpretation of Bible scriptures that…in my opinion…erroneously combines the seven days of creation into a single earth week…producing an apologetically indefensible young-age earth that undermines Christian evangelism across the world.
My point here is that the orderliness and intelligibility of the natural world…intelligible to human beings alone…in existence and in full-operation for the entire duration of the 4.8 billion years of the life of our planet Earth…when applied through the methodology of scientific investigation coupled with technological inventions…to create the new immerging fields of scientific inquiry…produced new discoveries that in most if not all cases took everyone by surprise…even scientists like Albert Einstein who appear to “stumble” upon discoveries like an expanding universe…that they themselves did not see coming.
If we want to indict and criticize Christians for “slow-walking” the concept of a changing earth that inhibited acceptance of macroevolution according to some Darwinists…then we can also include the whole of scientific investigation that sometimes takes decades or longer to confirm a particular new theory…and include the general public that even up to our present-day observe no radical change in the natural living and non-living worlds.
Einstein back-tracking on his own field equations…in 1916 pointing toward an expanding or contracting universe that leads to a beginning creation point in time…gives us a remarkable insight into the accepted wisdom that permeated modern societies through the first decades of the twentieth-century…that our natural world appears static and unchanging…even if it is not.
This undermines and refutes the notion that macroevolutionary change is so profuse and prolific that it is visually obvious…and excuses Christians, many scientists, and the general public at that time following 1859…for not immediately going along with the concept of biological macroevolution…and that still to this day is one of the observational, commonsense reasons why microevolution is accepted by the general public…but the theoretical extrapolation to macroevolution is still highly controversial and unproven.