Living Fossils

In a day when higher criticism and modern skepticism has cast doubt on the Bible, archaeology has refuted many of the so-called mistakes in the Bible. One of the greatest areas of doubt is that of creation. This broadcast looks at recent discoveries of animals that were supposed to be extinct.
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We are astounded today by the tremendous state of ferment and change in which our world is now involved. Even religious faith has been shaken about and altered by the upheaval in current ideas. What has led to this incredible confusion? Friends, it didn't happen all at once. The seeds of religious skepticism were sown long ago, when theologians first accepted the higher critical methods of Bible study. Under the cloak of scholarship and Biblical exegesis, the critics began to dissect the message of the Bible, point by point, in order to expose it's supposed errors. Many, many of the so-called mistakes tabulated by those scholars have been completely refuted by more recent discoveries of archaeology.

One of the greatest areas of doubt has been that of creation according to the Genesis account. When religious leaders chose to believe the philosophical conclusions of evolution over the clear cut record of the Bible, they embarked on a perilous, downward road. By denying the act of Creation, which God claims as His identifying mark of authority, men set themselves in a path which has culminated in gross skepticism. These extravagant end-products of evolution and modernism should serve as a fearful warning to every Christian who is attracted by the theories of men. There can be no trifling with God's Word, not even in the name of science.

No one yet has been able to fabricate a theory of origins which did not require more faith to accept than the simple Bible account. Some of the great men of science must be commended for the faith they have to believe certain of their own speculative propositions. Probably no one was more surprised than Darwin himself, when science began to recognize the theories he worked out to explain the variation of species. I have before me right now a copy of a letter written by Darwin soon after he published his views on natural selection. I saw the actual letter in Darwin's hand-writing in the British Museum, and made a photograph of it on the spot. Here's what he wrote a friend who had criticized his book: "I feel not a shade of surprise at your entirely rejecting my views, My surprise is that I have been successful in converting some few eminent botanists and geologists ... I entirely agree with you that there is no more direct proof of variation being unlimited in amount than there is that it is strictly limited."

Doubtless Darwin was a sincere person when he observed, on a world voyage, how the animals were apparently separated according to variety and strength. As a suggestive possibility of how this could have happened, he presented the theory on natural selection and the survival of the fittest. Since many scientists were searching at that time for an alternate to the Bible account of special creation they eagerly grasped this to use against the despised fundamentalists. Now let it be said that the creationists of that day were undoubtedly too narrow and iron-clad in their concepts. Their explanation of variation involved a belief that God created a special family of Spaniel dogs, and a special family of Collie dogs, and so right on through the hundreds of varieties. Actually God needed only to create one basic family of dogs, from which all the varieties have developed. Since all dogs belong to the same family and can cross-breed, their differences can be explained entirely on the basis of mutational changes. It was not necessary for each different kind to be especially created. But, please notice friends, that dogs can only produce other dogs, they can never produce any other species of animal.

If the evolutionist could ever prove that even one basic kind or species had ever crossed over into another species, he would have at least, a small evidence to begin building evolution upon. But that missing link is just as missing today as it was when Darwin wrote his theory. In spite of world-wide searching by the most famous scientific researchers, there has never appeared one single integrated form of life which is in the process of changing from one species to another. Everything continues to reproduce only after its kind exactly as God decreed in the book of Genesis. There have been some exciting moments when the scientists felt that the missing link had been found, but alas, it always ended in disappointment. For example a few years ago a strange-looking new sea creature was hauled out of the ocean near the shores of Malaya. Evolutionists rushed excitedly to the scene, feeling that the missing link might have been found. To their amazement they discovered a fish which was supposed to have become extinct millions of years ago. Identified as the Sealacanth, this fish has been an embarrassing exhibit against the basic claims of evolution. One scientist made this shocking admission in The Scientific American: "Throughout the hundreds of millions of years the Coelancanths have kept the same form and structure. Here is one of the great mysteries of evolution." (Dec. 1955) But, friends, it is only a mystery to the evolutionists. Although they assign millions of years for this fish to pass through several stages of evolutionary development, it insists on remaining unchanged. It refuses to conform to the theories of speculative men.

The Coelacanth is just one of many living fossils which continue to confound the poor evolutionist. Upon the published admissions of evolutionary scientists, the cockroaches and ants still retain almost the exact form which they bore millions of years ago. In fact according to The Scientific American, the cockroach was almost identical 250,000,000 years ago. Now if the scientist really believes that cockroaches were here that long ago and that they have not changed till this very day, what happens to his theory of evolution? The same stubborn resistance to change can be found in the dragon fly and common fruit-fly. In the 1950's a deep-sea mollusk was recovered off the coast of Central America. It lives in the sea at a depth of two miles. Notice what science has conceded about this creature; this is taken from the book Essentials of Earth History: "Its fossil relatives have been discovered in rock estimated to be some 350 million years old, where they are ... with the trilobites". (Page 43)

Now friends, evolution teaches that the trilobites are among the earths earliest inhabitants. They constituted the earliest forms of evolutionary life. Yet here is a mollusk which existed side by side with trilobites and who has confessedly made little if any change in form. Those mollusks were supposed to have become extinct 280,000,000 years ago, according to Science magazine. They are fossils alright, but living fossils. And instead of providing any missing link or evidence favorable to evolution, they absolutely shatter the whole theory to pieces.

Here is a question which has only one answer. Why have the scientists failed to discover a single intermediate type and yet they have discovered multiplied millions of fossils which are strictly classified under well-defined species? If life did evolve slowly from the simple to the complex then there would actually be far more intermediate forms than of fixed species. In the absence of a single one, how can the theory survive? This is a question that puzzles and perplexes. There are some valid scientific reasons to accept the account of creation in the Bible. It is more reasonable to believe that God can work a miracle by making matter than to believe that dumb unintelligent nature and time could create anything. It would have to be a miracle under either condition, but a miracle by a God of design is more easy to believe than a miracle by blind force or chance. It all boils down to the faith we exercise in the Bible. If we believe it, our faith will accept God as Creator. If we reject the Word of God, we can choose between a score of man-made theories about the origin of life.

Perhaps it is easier to understand the secular scientists than the religious leaders of our day. With the living powerful Word of God before them to testify of a Creator who spoke and it was done, who commanded and it stood fast, they still choose to believe fables, instead. Step by step this rejection of Bible truth has led them to dare question the very existence of God. I press this point, friends, because there are so many who have started the same path of doubt toward God's Word. That unbelief grows as it is encouraged. Gradually the Word of God is humanized and robbed of its divine power. Soon only the covers are left, and inspiration has been cast out the window. Don't let it happen to you!

You know, a survey of 3,000 Protestant ministers throughout the United States reveals that they are disturbed. Nearly half of the clergy in their 20's and 30's confessed that they thought seriously of leaving the ministry. "Much of the disillusionment among church leaders is caused by the hypocrisy of their preachers," said the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. And what about the attitude of the clergymen toward the Bible? The survey concluded with these words, "The Bible is not only not to be taken literally (less than 5 percent of the whole sampling did so) but also there is little specific guidance in it for specific problems," and that is what most of these theologians said, friends. Consistent with their downgrading of the Bible, only 20 percent of the ministers 35 years and under did not condemn extramarital sex. Now, if these ministers are disillusioned with their parishioners they had better examine what they are teaching them themselves.

In the letters section of Christianity Today a spokesman for the United Church of Christ, Dr. William Elliott, who wants to enlist evangelical Protestants in an ecumenical dialogue frankly declares that many ecumenical leaders strongly hate the evangelical doctrine of an infallible Bible. Dr. Elliott himself has characterized this notion of an infallible book as demonic. Now there are his actual words, friends. He said, "I consider adherence to the infallibility of Scripture demonic." And then he said this, "But hatred for the doctrine of the Perfect Book is very strong in a very large segment of ecumenical leadership and I can hardly be considered irresponsible and ecumenically inauthentic in voicing this hatred." Now there is a man who is a leader of the ecumenical movement who says I hate this idea of an infallibility of the Bible.

Well, a recent convention of the National Council of Churches produced the following results when a survey of delegates was made. Remember now, this is the elite of this organization which purports to represent millions of Protestant Christians in the United States. Two-thirds of the delegates were ordained clergymen, ninety percent of these were college graduates. To this representative group some elementary theologian questions were asked, and here are the questions and the answers that were given.

"What factors are absolutely necessary to salvation?" And the answer, the majority put "love your neighbor" as first. Now friends, what's happened to the text, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved"? The majority of these leaders of the National Council of Churches said that the first absolute essential of salvation is just to love your neighbor. All right, here is the second question. "I know that God exists and I have no doubts about it. Do you affirm or deny this statement?" Believe it or not, one in three of these ministers could not affirm his belief in the existence of God. The next question, "Jesus is a divine Son of God and I have no doubts about it. What do you think?" Thirty-six percent of the delegates assembled could not check this off without reservation. All right, the next question, "There is life beyond death. Do you believe it?" Thirty-one percent could not bring themselves to believe that. And then: "Miracles happened just as the Bible said. What do you think of that?" Sixty-two percent could not agree. Thirty-five percent put the miracles down to natural causes while twenty-six percent were either unsure that miracles happened at all or they were sure that they didn't. As to the doctrine of the virgin birth only twenty-eight percent believe that the devil actually exists. Well, these are interesting things, friends. We are living in a day of unbelief.

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