Our children have heard us say that evolution isn't true, but often we aren't sure how to explain in what way or why it isn't true. The simple concept of microevolution versus macroevolution is a great to place to begin with young, or even older children. If you aren't sure what the difference is yourself, read on. As the author of creation science curriculum published by Apologia, I believe it is so important that we are able to explain the truths and untruths of evolution to our children.
Evolution is not an evil word in itself. The word simply means to change from something simple to something more complex. Businesses evolve when they begin selling more products, people evolve from learning their ABC's to becoming a college student, learning much more complex things. Your relationship with God evolves from a simple understanding that Jesus took away your sin, to discerning God's will for your every day and entire life. Scientists have borrowed the word evolution to explain processes that they believe happen in the world. One thing scientists have discovered is a process called microevolution, where little changes take place over time. These changes have actually been seen and recorded. Another kind of evolution that some scientists believe occurs is called macroevolution. Macroevolution is a belief that things can change from one thing into another thing. This kind of evolution has never been seen, has never been recorded, has never been proved in any way. This kind of evolution, macroevolution, is what most Christians do not believe .
Let’s take a look at microevolution. Microevolution happens when a part of an animal, like its beak or its feet, change over time. Now, they don’t really change on an animal. But the animals in an area seem to look different than they used to look. The animal’s body part doesn’t become something else – a mouth doesn’t change into a beak or a paw doesn’t become a bird’s foot. Let me explain this. Pretend there are birds living in Hawaii that have long bills and enjoy eating nectar from flowers. Every bird is born with a long bill, but some just naturally have a bill that is a few centimeters longer than another, just like there are always variations in people. Two sisters might be born with curly hair, but one has hair that is just a little more curly than the other. That’s a natural variation. If the curlier haired sister married a curly haired man, their children would have even more curly hair. Animals have natural variations as well. Now, let’s say that there are more flowers in Hawaii with long tubes that only those birds with bills a little longer could reach. Now, it is a fact that the more an animal eats, the more babies they will have. If they don’t eat as much, they don’t produce as many babies. So, the birds with longer bills will get more food. And the birds with longer bills will have more young. So, over time, there are more birds with longer bills. Then, the birds with longer bills will begin to mate with other birds that have longer bills. And if there happens to be a little variation in the size of the bill in their offspring, those with even longer bills will get the most food, have the most young and begin to populate the area even more. Slowly, the birds with shorter bills will not be as abundant. And when they mate with longer billed birds, their young that develop the longer bills will have more young than the ones that didn’t get a longer bill.
So, over many years, birds with longer bills begin to have young with longer bills, and eventually it seems that the only birds you see around have extremely long bills. Did the bills change? No. The birds with longer bills simply reproduced more than birds with shorter bills. We say they evolved longer bills. This is microevolution. The bills didn’t change into anything, they didn’t even grow. But the birds in the area eventually “evolved” to have longer bills. Does that make sense to you? Microevolution is valid. You can believe in microevolution. We can find evidence for microevolution. If we find old bones from these Hawaiian birds, the older bones, buried deep within the earth will show shorter beaks. Then, as we find newer bones, they show longer and longer beaks. We find bones that show the transition from shorter beaks to longer beaks. These are called transitional creatures, they showed a change or transition between shorter and longer beaks. We can actually see, observe and prove the change occurred. However, the beak remained a beak. It didn’t become something, or grow from something other than a beak into a beak. It was always a beak. And the bird had within its cells the ability to produce birds with longer beaks, but it couldn’t produce a mouth with teeth, because the genes inside the bird only allow it to produce bird parts.
However, some scientists make a giant leap, and say that because a bird beak size can change over time (and we know it didn’t really change on any one bird), that a fish can change into a man, or a lizard can change into a bird. This is like saying that because we see a small mound that has ants living inside it called an anthill, giant mountains must have been made by similar creatures. Macroevolution is the name given to this giant leap from truth to a lie. Macro means big, and evolution means change. Macroevolution is an impossibly big change for which there is no evidence.
Often in school textbooks, in public and private schools, microevolution is explained, and all the evidence is given to the students. Then, after the kids come to understand how microevolution works, the textbook then tells the kids that this is how evolution works, and how we evolved from monkeys and monkeys evolved from fish. And because the kids understand how the small changes occur, they just assume they must be right about the big changes. And many, many people, without thinking just believe it.
One thing that is amazing about the fact that some scientists believe evolution is that there have never ever been any transitional creatures found between man and apes or dinosaurs and birds or fish and mammals. Though millions of fossils have been unearthed, none show a halfway or changing body from one creature into another creature. Yet, for two hundred years, some people have believed in evolution anyway.
You are probably wondering why some people believe this when the evidence does not confirm their beliefs. Well, if you didn’t believe in God, and you were a scientist, you would need some explanation for why we are here - this is called origins - from where did we originate? What are the origins of man? Scientists who don't believe in God want to believe in evolution. And when someone wants to believe something, it’s really hard to change their minds. And once they have fully accepted it, it’s hard to convince them otherwise. Adolf Hitler said "If you tell a lie often enough and loud enough, the people will believe it. And the greater the lie, the more they will believe it." That's a strange thing to say, but I'm beginning to think it's true.
Once the belief system, drilled into student's heads at an early age, is firmly in place, it's difficult to change. If someone today told you that the color green is really not green but a shade of blue, you would have a hard time believing it. When you see green, you will always want to call it green. Let’s say everyone begins calling it blue. That would be a difficult transition in beliefs for you to make. All people have a hard time changing their beliefs once they really believe something. So, even sometimes when someone becomes a Christian, they have a hard time believing the Bible's explanation of origins since they have, since childhood, been taught macroevolution is the way we originated.
The fact is that most people have not even heard of the difference between microevolution versus macroevolution. They think evolution is a scientific word for origins. But I believe all this is changing now that the word has gotten out. Winston Churchill said "A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on." Now the truth is fully dressed, and though the lie has gotten all the way around the world, the truth is becoming known and is exposing and correcting the lie so that real science can happen, and people can turn to God, Who created it all.