A Question I Was Asked:

Can You Give me a Basic Starting Point for Considering Evolution?

...I am a young person, I just need some basic starting point for considering evolution, nothing complicated. Can you break it down for me into the most basic elements?

UK Apologetics Reply:

Okay, your very basic starting point is to be aware that two separate things may be loosely thought of as 'evolution.'

1. Micro-evolution.
This is variation in kinds often according to various factors including geographical ones. 'Natural selection' is another term for it and there is obviously also 'planned selection.' Animal breeders and plant breeders work in this area. Actually this area is not "evolution" at all, because all the genetic information is already there, for a dog, or even a tomato to vary in shape/size/type. Evolution has been applied to this area which is now often called 'micro-evolution,' but it is a very bad term because it suggests you need long periods of time for a very small dog, as an example, to "evolve" into a very large dog, but you don't. All the genetic information for a dog to vary in type, size or colour is already present. Dog breeders and all animal breeders know this, plant breeders know it.

It is commonly believed that this understanding of Natural Selection came from Darwin. It didn't. it was first understood and outlined by Edward Blyth, who was a creationist (that is, one who believes in divine creation). Very importantly, Micro-evolution finds that there are strict barriers between kinds, or species - nothing can very gradually become something else (even though macro-evolution, which we will look at in a moment, insists on this). You can have different sorts of tomatoes, cucumbers, roses, horses, cats, dogs, sheep, but they stay true to what they are. You can cross a tiger with a lion and get a 'liger,' but thereafter baby ligers will not be born, they will revert to one or the other. Now this is between big cats but even here a law of nature prevents a change, this shows how powerful the law against change is!

Micro-evolution/natural selection/variation within species - whatever one wants to call it - may be witnessed all around us and presents no problem to Christians of any background.

2. Macro-evolution.
This is the grand philosophical theory which claims that all life on earth gradually evolved from very primitive forms. I say "philosophical" because no proof exists for any of this. According to this idea, man himself evolved from some sort of primitive slime, a chemical mix which 'just happened' to have the necessary amino acids etc., for some basic and primitive organism to have got going. After many millions of years this primitive 'cocktail' is said to have "evolved" into more sophisticated life forms (of course, somehow or other it would have needed to reproduce itself from day one, apparently without any mechanism for doing so!), gradually this would lead to insect and animal life and, eventually, to a man. Some say a few millions years was long enough for this, others say you would need billions of years, but the laws of probability say it could never happen at all! Nothing here can be demonstrated in any laboratory experiment, the fossil record which we can dig up does not back it up, and this story (many of us believe it is just a fairy story) breaks one of the most established of all the laws of science, 'the law of biogenesis' (life can only come from life). Evolution says that - given countless millions of years - anything can evolve by gradual steps, or by mutations. The fact, though, is everything stays as it - nothing becomes a different species. If you almost succeed, the result is a barren animal or a plant which cannot reproduce by seed. It is also known that mutations are something like 95% deleterious (harming or damaging).

The original Darwinism is now in retreat and has been so for many years which is why people like Richard Dawkins have tried so hard to popularize 'Neo-Darwinism,' which does admit that Darwin was not entirely correct in several areas. Neo-Darwinism now finally admits none of this could have succeeded without rampant mutations, the problem here is that it is already established that mutations either quickly disappear as generations move on, or they are positively damaging. The newer Neo-Darwinism also embraces the fuller genetics understanding of Gregor Mendel (who was a Christian believer), because Darwin himself had a very poor understanding of genetics, and how they work.

So the newer form of macro-evolution is Neo-Darwinism. During the last few years it has become increasingly attacked from within the scientific community as being an untenable theory of life. Dr Denis Noble of the University of Oxford, a brilliant geneticist (website: The Music of Life), has become an especially notable critic of Neo-Darwinism and has actually ridiculed much of the work of prominent Neo-Darwinist teacher Richard Dawkins.

That is as far as I am going here. Here are some articles to read:

Information; A Huge Problem for Evolution

Surely Evolution is the Greatest 'Faith Belief' Of All Time

Charles Darwin; It's Time For The Truth To Be Told

Robin A. Brace. September 8th, 2016.