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Did God Use Evolution to Create the Different Types of Life?

The Bible’s answer

No. The Bible clearly states that God created humans as well as different “kinds” of animal and plant life. * (Genesis 1:12, 21, 25, 27; Revelation 4:11) It says that the entire human family descended from Adam and Eve, our first parents. (Genesis 3:20; 4:1) The Bible account does not support the theory that God used evolution to bring about the different kinds of life, sometimes called theistic evolution. The fact is, though, that nothing in the Bible conflicts with scientific observations that variations occur within each kind of life. *

 Did God use evolution?

The term “theistic evolution” refers to a broad variety of ideas. According to the Encyclopædia Britannica, the term promotes the idea that “natural selection is one of the mechanisms with which God directs the natural world.”

Theistic evolution can also include the following ideas:

  • All living organisms descended from common ancestors in the distant past.

  • One kind of life-form can evolve into a completely different kind of life-form, a concept that is sometimes referred to as macroevolution.

  • God is somehow ultimately responsible for these processes.

 Is evolution compatible with the Bible?

Theistic evolution implies that the Bible’s account of creation in Genesis is not completely accurate. However, Jesus referred to the Genesis account as historical fact. (Genesis 1:26, 27; 2:18-24; Matthew 19:4-6) The Bible says that before coming to earth, Jesus lived in heaven with God and was involved in helping God to bring “all things” into existence. (John 1:3) Therefore, the idea that God used evolution to bring about different life-forms is incompatible with Bible teachings.

 What about the ability of plants and animals to adapt?

The Bible does not explain how much variation can occur within a kind. Neither does it contradict the fact that the different kinds of animals and plants created by God can vary as they breed or adapt to new environments. Although some view such adaptations as a form of evolution, no new kind of life is produced.

^ par. 3 The Bible uses the word “kind,” which is much broader in meaning than the word “species” as used by scientists. Often, what scientists choose to call the evolution of a new species is simply a matter of variation within a kind, as the word is used in the Genesis account.

^ par. 3 This concept is sometimes referred to as microevolution.