The Importance of the Evolution/Creation Debate


Disclaimer: The title of this post is sarcastic. Just so you know before you send me hate email.

I'm surprised I haven't blogged about this topic before. That's probably a good thing, because if I had written something two years ago, I'd probably be reading it now going "what the heck was I thinking?"

Anyway, every once in a while a topic kind of hits me from all sides and I am compelled to write about it. This time around it's evolution. A couple of friends of mine, unbeknownst to each other had simultaneously sent a twitter on the topic of evolution. At the same time my lovely wife was sharing the paper she was writing on Darwin. When something gets into your brain from three different angles, it's hard not to have it rattle around for a while. It did, and now I have to write about it. Really, I have to, sorry.

Over the course of the last 10 years or so, my beliefs and opinions of the matter of Evolution vs. Creation have varied widely. At one time or another I would have called myself a Creationist, a non-Darwinist, an anti-Evolutionist, a Seeker, a Quesitoner, a Dumb-ass, and Apathetic (on the subject of Creation v. Evolution). That's pretty much where I am now, I really don't care.

I used to think this was a very important topic. I am a Christian, I believe in One True God. I believe this God created the Heavens and the Earth. As such, at one time, I thought it was very important to make sure everyone understood that the theory of evolution has problems and that everyone should believe in a creationist model of the development of the universe. Man, was I dumb.

Does that mean I'm an evolutionist now? No, not really. I went to school for many years, I am very and almost intimately familiar with the writings of Darwin (less so with the theories that others developed from his works, but with the basics). I respect Darwin. But I'm not really an evolutionist either.

As i said, I'm Apathetic on the subject. I really don't care any more. Why? Because the debate is pointless. It's a distraction. You can argue one side or the other with varying degrees of success, but in the end it doesn't really matter. Why? Because until Dr. Emmet Brown perfects the Flux Capacitor and installs it in that DeLorean, we can't go back in time and really see what happened.

But the bigger problem is this: if we are putting time and energy into a debate that neither side can conclusively win, what are we NOT putting our time and energy into?

As Christians, here's our answer:

Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. - James 1:27 (ESV)

What does this say? Our religion, our habits relating to God, should be to take care of people and keep your butt out of the smut.

What does this not say? It does not say that our mission is to make sure that everyone believes that Darwin was wrong and to spend hours in debates and arguments that make us look like fools.

The Creation/Evolution debate is a distraction, another one of those questions designed to make both sides look like fools and to keep us all from the real point. Christian or atheist, I think we can agree on one thing: taking care of people in need is a good thing to do. The difference is, the atheist doesn't have a God that tells him he is supposed to be doing it, yet he does it anyway.

So let's file this one with "Why won't God heal amputees?" as one of those arguments that distracts us from what we should all be doing: taking care of each other. Let's put away pointless and petty squabbles and actually do something that makes people go "what is it about you that makes you the great person that you are?" instead of "what is it about you that makes you the dumb ignorant person that you are?"