Foundations for Life: What’s Yours?
Our basic understanding of life and the world around us affects our way of thinking and ultimately our health – physical as well as spiritual health. Where we came from and what our ultimate destiny will be affects the way we view everything in life that happens to us, and the choices we make. Even if someone does not give much thought to their origin or destiny, and just simply “follows the crowd” each day, they are living their lives and making choices each day based on a belief system that views our origin and destiny in a specific way. How a person reacts when they get sick, for example, is a reflection on this belief system of origins and destiny, whether the person consciously adopted the belief system themselves based on reason, or whether they just followed the examples of others in their culture and environment.
Evolution is the dominant belief system forced upon us today
In the realm of government-funded public education and government-funded academia, the belief in evolution is the dominant belief system taught to America’s children and youth today. Every tax-paying American is forced to support this belief system through the funding of evolution-based education. It is also promoted in the nation’s government-funded museums, parks, and other institutions.
Yet, the vast majority of Americans choose to believe in some form of creation. You can see the results of the Gallup organizations polling of the American public on this matter, for example, here:http://www.religioustolerance.org/ev_publi.htm (you can also see a more recent poll by Zogby here.) So for the vast majority of Americans who have chosen to believe in creation instead of evolution, their right of choice is violated every time they enter a public funded park or museum or send their children to a public funded educational institution and evolution is presented as fact, and as the only way of viewing history and origins.
My own children are home-educated and therefore have not been subject to forced-evolution teaching through a school system. However, when we travel as a family and visit places like national parks, and take time to read about wildlife and geological sites at these places, or watch films or listen to tour guides in such places, we are subject to the evolutionary viewpoint, and at our expense! If we want to visit any of these national or state natural treasures, we don’t have any choice but to pay the price of admission and support their evolutionary education if we want to see them (our tax dollars also support it). Even when we take in tours at places that are run by private non-profit groups, these groups generally receive a huge part of their budget from government funds such as grants, and they have no choice but to present the evolutionary viewpoint to continue receiving their government funding.
As I have stated in other places, there are plenty of resources to look at the scientific debate regarding creation versus evolution. What I want to do for the rest of this article is simply show how these two belief systems are vastly different in terms of how we think and act each day in our environment and culture, and then show in future articles how a foundation based on creation is the healthiest choice we can make.
So here is the premise: Our basic understanding of life and the world around us affects our way of thinking and ultimately our health. A view of life built upon the foundation of evolution leads to false ideas, poor choices, and ill health. A view of life based on creation and God’s continuous interaction with His creation leads to correct choices and good health. A structure built upon a faulty foundation will eventually fail, while a system built upon a strong foundation will stand firm.(Matt. 7:24-27)
The Creation Foundation
As always, we turn to the Bible, the best-selling book of all time, to guide us in understanding our origins and our place in life. As a record of God’s revelation to man, here we find out the most important questions of life answered, such as who are we, and where did we come from?
- God Created Everything
That God created the heavens and earth (e.g. universe) is clearly stated in both the Old Testament and New Testaments. Genesis 1:1 states: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” The New Testament further explains that it was Jesus, in his pre-incarnate state (before he came to earth to be born a man) who created everything.
In the beginning was the Word (Jesus), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. John 1:1-3
For by Him (Jesus) all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities–all things have been created through Him and for Him. Colossians 1:16
- God created each one of us personally, and we are made in God’s image.
God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Genesis 1:27
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Psalm 139:15-18
- While everything was originally created perfect, sin has marred creation, and the creation is suffering decay today. (See Genesis 3)
For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. (Romans 8:19-23)
When Adam and Eve sinned, their sin began the process of physical death in their bodies. They still lived over 900 years, but they eventually died a physical death. The creation also suffered, as the passage in Romans above explains. Today, we really don’t know what the plant and animal life was like in the days of Adam and Eve before the Fall, before sin entered the world. In the days of Noah, sin had become so bad that God wiped out all life in the world through the flood, preserving only those who were on the ark. When Noah’s family and the animals left the ark, the world was apparently a very different place. The entire ecosystem was changed. Man’s life span grew shorter and shorter.
The Bible clearly teaches that the creation is wearing out, just like our clothes wear out over time.
Of old You founded the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. Even they will perish, but You endure; and all of them will wear out like a garment; like clothing You will change them and they will be changed. Psalm 102:25-26
He also said, “You, Lord, in the beginning created the earth, and with your own hands you made the heavens. They will disappear, but you will remain; they will all wear out like clothes. You will fold them up like a coat, and they will be changed like clothes. But you are always the same, and your life never ends.” Hebrews 1:10-12
One of the results of sin is that man has to work hard to produce food because of the curse on the ground.
And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Genesis 3:17-19
- Jesus is active in His creation keeping everything working, upholding all things by his power, until the culmination of history when the present earth and heavens will be destroyed.
He (Jesus) is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. Hebrews 1:3
And He (Jesus) is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Colossians 1:16
First of all, you must understand that in the last days some people will appear whose lives are controlled by their own lusts. They will make fun of you and will ask, “He promised to come, didn’t he? Where is he? Our ancestors have already died, but everything is still the same as it was since the creation of the world!” They purposely ignore the fact that long ago God gave a command, and the heavens and earth were created. The earth was formed out of water and by water, and it was also by water, the water of the flood, that the old world was destroyed. But the heavens and the earth that now exist are being preserved by the same command of God, in order to be destroyed by fire. They are being kept for the day when godless people will be judged and destroyed. But do not forget one thing, my dear friends! There is no difference in the Lord’s sight between one day and a thousand years; to him the two are the same. The Lord is not slow to do what he has promised, as some think. Instead, he is patient with you, because he does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants all to turn away from their sins. But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. On that Day the heavens will disappear with a shrill noise, the heavenly bodies will burn up and be destroyed, and the earth with everything in it will vanish. Since all these things will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people should you be? Your lives should be holy and dedicated to God, as you wait for the Day of God and do your best to make it come soon—the Day when the heavens will burn up and be destroyed, and the heavenly bodies will be melted by the heat. But we wait for what God has promised: new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness will be at home. 2 Peter 3:3-13
So to summarize the creation foundation to life, the physical world is decaying and passing away, heading towards a day of final destruction when God will create a new earth. The height of physical achievement by man lies in the past, not the future. Before the Flood, man had a life span of almost a thousand years! Today it is rare for someone to live even 100 years. The best years in human history were in the past. Without God holding everything together, this world would probably completely fall apart very quickly. He will be the one to destroy it and create a new physical world.
The good news is that we can be re-created now in our spirit, even though our outer body is decaying. The apostle Paul said “For this reason we never become discouraged. Even though our physical being is gradually decaying, yet our spiritual being is renewed day after day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16) This regeneration happens when we are born again spiritually through faith in Jesus.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2 Corinthians 5:17
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith–more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire–may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1:3-9
When we experience this rebirth in Christ, and the resulting spiritual renewal, it also has a positive effect on our physical bodies.
If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you. Romans 8:10-11
Sadly, we live in a culture today that concentrates only on the physical part of man, the body, and not the spirit. We exalt the physical realm and usually ignore the spiritual realm altogether, because of the belief in evolution.
The Darwinian Evolution Foundation
I am certainly not an expert in evolutionary theory. I am sure there are very many different variations of this belief system, and there is certainly a difference between Darwinian Evolution and micro-evolution, adaptions that can be viewed scientifically and verified. Darwinian Evolution is a philosophy of history, and the scientific method of discovery cannot go back in time and observe history. I present Darwinian Evolution here simplistically to show how it contradicts the belief in creation, and the way we approach life, without discussing all the variations and changes that have occurred in the Darwinian or Neo-Darwinian philosophies over the years.
- Man has evolved from lower life forms, via natural processes over millions or billions of years.
- Some will have God or a “god” starting the process. (Deism/big bang theory, etc.) But they do not see God active in creation after the beginning.
- Some reject any personal higher life form, and see intelligent life in the physical universe itself.
- Man has evolved to the highest, most intelligent life form in the plant/animal kingdom. Man is usually not seen as morally any different from other life forms. A higher life form than man is denied, as is the spiritual realm, since it is outside the observation of “science.”
For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Romans 1:19-23
- Man through his intelligence can now guide the evolutionary process to greater heights of achievement. Things are continuing to evolve. The past is “primitive.” Man used to be “brutish.” Our technology has made us the most advanced society in the history of man. Our best years lie in the future.
Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is folly with God. For it is written, “He catches the wise in their craftiness,” and again, “The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are futile.” I Corinthians 3:18-20
- Man can achieve immortality (and other things) through science and his own evolving intelligence. Disease, for example, will one day be eradicated through the achievements of the science and technology of man.
So to summarize the evolution foundation to life, man has evolved from lower life forms and is now more advanced than at any other time in human history. If you exist today it is because you are “lucky” and your ancestors advanced in the evolutionary process because they were the strongest of their species (survival of the fittest). Those with superior intelligence are controlling the advancement of man through science and technology, and our best years are still ahead.
While the majority of the American people today believe in creation, we live in a culture that is built upon the foundation of Darwinian Evolution. From our health care system, to the way we produce food, to many other areas of our lives, the evolution foundation prevails. Our health care system treats only the physical man, with the belief system that technology and science can solve all our health problems. Our approach to food production is purely evolutionary, with the “Star Trek” mentality that some day all we have to do is push a button to “replicate” food because our technology will be so advanced. The past is viewed as primitive, with the result that traditional skills are dying out in favor of industrialized food. The physical is exalted over the spiritual, which is either marginalized or denied altogether.
So how long can our culture survive built upon a foundation like the one we have today? Are we really all that advanced in our science and technology, or are we a fragile society dependent on fragile systems and networks that could come crashing down at any time? Are we truly becoming healthier? Is our food better today than in the past?
Next Article: Re-Creation: The Rebirth