“God … rested from all his work” Genesis 2:2
Anything worth doing has a goal. To keep working at something requires that we believe we can accomplish it, and that we will know when it is done. Then we can truly rest.
What is the goal of talking about Creation and Evolution? The events we may argue about are far in the past, and the evidence can be seen in many different ways. But this conversation has implications for how we live now, and for who we understand ourselves to be.
What is my purpose? Creation and Evolution offer different answers.
Everything about Evolution argues that we do not have purpose. And Evolution cannot explain our sense of purpose in how we live, nor our desire to find purpose in the world around us.
In contrast, all of Scripture resonates with the truth that we have been given a purpose by God. This is were the difference between the faith described in Scripture and the philosophy of Evolution is most clear.
To accept that we are the random outcome of a chance event means we are purposeless. Being purposeless means we are not responsible for what we do. We are simply carrying out the ongoing process of failure, mutation, and progress.
But if we are the result of God’s intentional design, he will hold us accountable. If we were created with a purpose, God must decide what to do with us of we do not fulfill it. The Bible describes that failure of purpose as spiritual death.
Evolution offers a way out of this problem, which is that no one is to blame. But it also means no one can change it either. Without responsibility we have no hope of salvation. Our only hope is that at some point, our species will rise to a higher level of sophistication.
But Scripture offers a way through this problem. God holds us accountable for our failure, but his purpose includes a way of salvation. God has sent his Son to accomplish what only he can do. Jesus offers us rest when we accept his purpose.
Jesus perfectly fulfilled his purpose, which included paying our penalty for failing to fulfill ours. In him, God has shared his purpose with us. We feel that purpose, even when we fail to live up to it. Somehow we know we are made for more.
All of this is unfolds against the backdrop of creation, which is designed by God to reveal his purpose (Psa. 8:4, Heb. 2:6). Genesis 1-2 was not written to defeat Evolution, but to reveal God’s glory, first as creator, then ultimately as Savior.
The purpose of talking about Creation and Evolution is to keep that conversation going. It helps those who argue for Evolution see that they do so in a very purposeful way. And it reminds those who argue for Creation that we have a greater purpose than winning this debate.
I believe God would have us give all the room Scripture allows to keep that conversation going.