But how much change is allowed?
Creationists do not, and have never, taught that God created all species as we see them today. People in the past certainly believed in ‘the fixity of species’ but this was more due to the pervasive influence of the pagan Greek philosopher Aristotle than to anything in the Bible. One of Darwin’s primary influences, the lawyer-turned-geologist Charles Lyell, taught fixity of species. He also believed that species were placed in “centres of creation”. In other words, species were more or less created in their current locations. Many of Darwin’s points in the Origin of Species and later books were designed to refute Lyellian and Aristotelian arguments, although we can see their influences in his earlier writings.
The biblical Creation/Flood/Dispersion model really has nothing to do with Darwin’s objections. He was not arguing against biblical teaching. In fact, there is an excellent example in the Bible itself that shows how fast species can change: the episode where Jacob bred spotted and speckled animals from all-white flocks (Genesis 30). Clearly, species are not fixed. The Bible talks about a worldwide dispersion of the animals on the Ark after the Flood. Thus, in no way does the Bible suggest that all species were created where they are found today. Darwin observed that many species on the Galápagos islands were clearly related to those on the South American mainland, but they were subtly different as well. This refuted Lyell’s “centres of creation” model, yet the observations are even better explained by post-Flood migration paths
Read the full series using the links below from Creation Ministries International.
Creatures were designed to change: Full Series
- Part 1 But how much change is allowed?
- Part 2 Speciation and the limits of change
- Part 3 The tangled web of (intrabaraminic) life