Here is a possible process description I think is reasonable. Basically, in a raw form:
God started life by forming a single celled organism in the dirt. This was nothing short of proof of His existence.
Life proceeds from life, even simple life.
The complexity of the most basic amino acids and DNA structure is evidence of His careful design. Over an extended time (which would have taken precisely as long as God wanted to take) God transformed that single cell into new ones. By manipulating the DNA of each transitional form, He carefully changed (or put into place the processes which changed) each one into the next.
What if someone manages to develop life in a test tube? It will not go far in proving that life comes from anything less than directed intelligent life, in my opinion. I don’t understand why life, if from lifelessness, is not consistently or constantly popping up all around us. Why would the first happening be so rare?
Eventually, God had transformed this single cell into millions of species. There would have been thousands of end points, and maybe millions of midpoints (which there are in the earth strata).
Not all creatures are on the pathway to man; these and many of the transitional forms He thought were good and they flourished under His scrutiny. When he moved from one primate to another, and finally to what we would call something akin to man, the similarities at the microscopic level were striking.
The thread of design was left hidden in the DNA along the way, and the success in passing on these DNA changes within individuals. These pre-humans were the most intelligent of the creatures, with the possible exception of some of the other end forms, like dolphins and other large mammals.
They formed communities and lived in hunter-gatherer societies, perhaps even grunting out basic language as we picture them doing. Physically, they were similar in appearance to a human; spiritually they were no different from a wolf – Human in feature, but animal in soul.
Then God chooses one.
God prepares a garden (the invention of cultivation is felt strongly in the first couple of chapter of Genesis (Gen 2:5, 15), and it could be that 10k years ago was when cultivation began in a large scale way, or maybe not). And takes the man, and “puffs the breath of Life” into Him.” In other words, gives Him a spirit.
This spirit is the connection point between God and Adam that is unique among the rest of creation. The immaterial part of us came from something – from other immaterial makes logical sense to me.
Adam is now at least a rudimentary moral creature. God gives him a simple right/wrong, obey/disobey choice.
Adam, however, is so disconnected from the other pre-humans by this transforming spirit, that there is no suitable mate among them any longer. They are pure animals, he is the animal/god called “man.”
Did God really parade the bison in front of Adam to look for a suitable helper? Maybe, it sounds like in the naming process He did; but He would certainly have passed the chimp, the homo-erectus, and maybe even members of Adam’s own previous tribe. However, they were no longer enough like him to be suitable. In an act of delegated authority, Adam names them and then God, perhaps in a special act of creation (my opinion) creates Eve of a part of Adam (this spirit is now apparently genetically encoded).
Later, did their children marry pre-humans? I have no answer for this. The Bible is too silent. Did God change a partner for each of Adam’s children? Were there more special creations? I don’t know. Something like this, I am sure; it is almost unthinkable that God would have allowed Seth to marry a pre-human, though not impossible – perhaps sex was the original way the spirit was transferred?
I admit and embrace that this is all hocus-pocus since there are NO hints scripturally.
But, if something is true, it is true. I believe that truth would never come in conflict with truth – if two things are in conflict, at least one must be error. However, maybe less of our scientific discovery and God’s revelation are in an conflict, when we are willing to study them.
Gen 4:17 tells us that Cain had children by a wife. I think it is possible this unnamed wife was a pre-human. Of course, his child would be born with the moral spirit (as a dominant trait), but his wife would not have it. She might be smart and maybe even somewhat sophisticated, but she would lack that spirit. Cain began to set up cities led by his specially advantaged children (what all advantages did a spirit man have?
Perhaps a better sense of unity, purpose, relationship, but would not the knowledge of cultivating be enough to become almost a god to these wanderers? I think the passages here indicate that there is a type of understanding of progress and technology that these new spirit children had too – read through the relatively quick developments of metal working, tents, war, even music.)
So where are all these pre-humans? For generations, they would have been competed out of existence. Technological improvements left the spirit humans with more time to procreate, I would imagine. Any that would have been left would have been wiped out (or virtually so, depending on the view of that passage) by the flood… the rest, as they say, is history.
As to the moral implications of how “mean” the process of evolution seems: It is a huge assumption on our part that it is “mean.” We understand even less about any kind of animal afterlife than we do our own!
However, even if we assume that animals are without an eternity, how would this process be more “mean” than the consumption of animals today, which God often commanded in scripture? It may seem “mean” to us, but it is evil or immoral?
What about “wasteful?” Wasteful is a concept only for those limited in resources. When resources are unlimited, wasteful is a silly idea. Would evolution be wasteful? Not to God.
Do either of these make the case?
I don’t think so.
However, this actually makes another assumption that is not a known thing. The theory of “survival of the fittest” is a descriptive concept to describe what we see in animals today; however, this process has never created a new species so far as we have seen. Do animals starve because they are unfit? They can, but does that transform them into a new species?
No observed evidence of it. Did the pre-fall process of evolution require this level of competition?
It did not require it. It may have happened, but there is no reason to assume it except that we see the competition today, though it does not seem to be helping creatures change! Perhaps the fall ended evolution, rather than causing it. Perhaps that is why we have not seen any new ones in the last few hundred years and maybe the last few thousand. In the end, the answer is unknown for now.
Certainly, the Creator was able to plan all of this out in the “design” phase of Creation.
In any case, to worship creation is always heresy – even if it is creationism that you worship:
“Remember, the teachings of evolution contend that we evolved from monkeys, or from some other intermediate ancestor. Thus, if we follow that teaching to its logical conclusion, we would recognize that it implies the Bible is not true, and simply a collection of stories and myths; and if that is true about the Bible, then God does not exist, and we have no need of a Savior.” – Creationist Website
Jesus is the only way to a right relationship with God. He is the only Way. Not Creationism… Jesus. To say that anything other than faith in Christ is necessary for salvation is Heresy.
© Chris Legg, 2005, 2015