The Bible and Anthropology
Anthropology is “the science of human beings; especially: the study of human beings and their ancestors through time…and in relation to physical character, environmental and social relations, and culture” (m-w.com). The Bible affirms that human beings are unique in God’s creation, exceptional above all of the animals God created: “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth” (Genesis 1:26).
Evolutionists contend that human beings are nothing more than a higher animal, a little higher than the apes from which we supposedly evolved. Confirmed facts in the true science of anthropology support the Biblical view of man rather than the evolutionary theory of man. Even though many scientists and most public schools, colleges, museums, and the news and entertainment media are committed to the concept of human evolution, all the fossil evidence and other data of physical anthropology are fully consistent with the Bible teaching that man is completely unrelated to the apes or any animal ancestors.
Biblical Facts Against Animal to Human Evolution
It is unfortunate that many in the religious world today believe in evolution and also claim they believe in the Bible as the Word of God; theistic evolutionists think it is possible for the Bible to be harmonized with the theory of evolution. But there are several facts revealed in God’s Word, related to the science of anthropology, which simply cannot be adapted to man’s theory of evolution.
The meaning of “according to its kind” (Genesis 1:21,24-25), argues against animal “kind” evolving into human “kind.” Supporting this “according to its kind” teaching, the New Testament affirms there are created differences between man and the main divisions of the animal kingdom: “All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of animals, another of fish, and another of birds” (1Corinthians 15:39). True studies in anthropology, biology and the medical field confirm this biblical teaching.
In addition to this, there are several other teachings of Scripture which stress a clear separation between man and the animals. One is man’s “dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth” (Genesis1:28). Note that we are not equal with animals, nor are we just advanced animals. We have dominion over the animals, even as we do over the rest of the earth. The animals were all created to serve man, not to compete with him in an evolutionary struggle for survival. If man evolved from animals, as theistic evolutionists contend, why does the Bible speak of God creating man separately from animals? According to the Bible, Adam and Eve were individually formed by God Himself: “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being…And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And Adam said: ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man’” (Genesis 2:7, 21-23). The Bible pictures the creation of man as a direct miraculous creation, not a formation from previous animals. If man came from the lower animals, he would already have “the breath of life” for they surely have it. And it is impossible to explain God’s special formation of Eve’s body out of Adam’s side in terms of any kind of evolutionary development from an animal ancestry. The Bible reveals that when Adam was instructed to name the animals (an instruction that in itself was a testimony to the separation of man from the animals), there were none that were sufficiently like him to be a “helper comparable to him” (Genesis 2:20). This indicates there were no animals whose immediate past ancestry he shared.
Jesus Christ’s chronology of man’s creation further argues against animal to human evolution: “But from the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female’” (Mark 10:6). Man and woman were made and existed, not after billions years of evolutionary development, but “from the beginning of the creation” just as Genesis 1 and 2 depict. It is instructive to note that there are at least sixty quotations from, or allusions to, the first three chapters of Genesis in the New Testament. In all of these, it is obvious that the inspired writers regarded these records as absolutely historical, without the slightest hint that they were merely symbolical. All of these New Testament references clearly confirm that the Genesis account records as historical fact the special creation of the first man and woman. If man is merely the product of a billion years of organic evolution then the Biblical record (including its acceptance as accurate history by Christ and the apostles) is wrong.
No Ape to Human Transitions in the Fossils
The evolutionary reconstructions of supposed pre-human forms (transitions from ape to man) seen in museums, textbooks and in the media are quite impressive, but they are highly imaginative and speculative. The fossils of these supposed ape-human intermediates are fragmentary and questionable. Since many fossils of true apes and true men have been found, the very scarcity of fossils that could even be considered as possible intermediate forms between apes and men is alone enough to discredit the theory of man’s ape-like ancestry. Only a few bone fragments have been found that have been imaginatively construed as some sort of lower species of man. This is a strange situation in view of the multiplied millions of “ape-men” that must have lived and died during the hypothetical million-year transition, affirmed by evolutionists, from the first apelike ancestor to man.
The few fossils offered as evidence by paleoanthropologists have mostly been discredited by evolutionary anthropologists themselves. The three supposed “missing-links” that were being promoted most vigorously by evolutionists when I was going to school were Java man, Peking man, and Piltdown man. The bones of the original Java man have since been recognized as belonging to two different creatures–the skull to a gibbon, the femur to a man. The fossils of the original Peking man were quite controversial from the beginning but in any case were lost during World War II. Piltdown man is now universally acknowledged to be a hoax–but a hoax that fooled the world’s leading anthropologists for decades. The Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon tribes of cavemen were originally thought to be ape-men but are now universally accepted as true men. The few more recent fossils offered as evidence of “missing links” have been confirmed as humans, or chimpanzees and apes.
There are many fossils of true apes and many of true men, but nothing in between. There have never been any man-apes or ape-men. Men have always been men, and apes have always been apes, according to the real fossil evidence and true studies in anthropology, and this is exactly what the Bible teaches.