The second theory to examine on Jacob's terms is the theory of Evolution. Monroe W. Strickberger from the University of California, Berkeley defined Evolution as the "genetic changes in populations of organisms through time that lead to differences among them" (598). Simple logic will prove this definition true to a point. Obviously Noah did not take hundreds of species of dogs, thousands of rodents and millions of insects on to the Arc. Evolution can be substantiated among species, genus and even possibly families, but once we get into orders, classes, and subphylums we approach shaky ground. For example, it is very conceivable that the different types of coyotes all came from the same ancestors; that coyotes and wolves both came from a common ancestors; it is even possible to conceive that foxes, coyotes and wolves all came from one common ancestor (click here for an example--picture taken from Historical Geology 120). The aspect of the theory of Evolution that we wish to examine is the idea that all life evolved from a common ancestor (picture taken from Historical Geology 113): that man descended from apes, that whales descended from mice, that birds from dinosaurs, and that ultimately all life descended from simple single-celled organisms.
Evolution depends heavily upon the ideas of Uniformitarianism. Shortly after the development of the theory of Uniformitarianism, Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life and The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex in which he set forth his arguments and evidence for evolution. Darwin developed his theories while studying aboard the H.M.S. Beagle. "The voyage took five years to go around the world, spending most of its time off the coast of South America... While on the Beagle, he [Darwin] had read each of the three volumes of Lyell's Principles of Geology as soon as they were published, and began to seen not only geology but also biology in the Lyellian uniformitarian way" (Prothero 66-67). "Essential to Darwin's argument was a belief that the age of the earth extended beyond anything ever proposed before" (Strickberger 38). Obviously at the current stage of evolutionary progress things would have had to be developing, evolving and dieing for hundreds of millions of years prior for Darwin's theory to hold water. Current research claims to have found fossils of bacteria from 3.4 billion years ago (Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia cv. Evolution; we won't even try to examine the vitality of the claims to have found a fossil of a tiny organism lacking a cell wall or any other 'hard' substance that lived in a massive ocean almost completely alone). As shown prior, many of the principles of Uniformitarianism are in contradiction with scriptures and the words of prophets.
What of the principle of Evolution on their own? Do they stand up against Jacob's test? We first turn again to the Fall of Adam. According to the scriptures and the apostles, Adam's Fall initiated death on this earth. As shown previously, Adam's Fall was defiantly within the last few thousand years. This is not way for things to be dying, making fossils, and evolving for millions of years if the scriptures are to be trusted in placing Adam about 6,000 years ago (for more information and documentation see Church Leaders on the Age of the Earth)
Most people are not aware of what the development of the theory of evolution did to Charles Darwin. Before his studies began, he was a devout Christian-he even studied to enter the ministry. With the development of his theory though, he said, "I never gave up Christianity until I was forty years of age" (Desmond 658). Christ gave us a foolproof test for just these sorts of ideas. He said simply, "by their fruits ye shall know them" (Matt. 7:20). Moroni elaborated upon this idea by explaining
For behold, my brethren, it is given unto you to judge, that ye may know good from evil; and the way to judge is as plain, that ye may know with a perfect knowledge, as the daylight is from the dark night. For behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil; wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God. But whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do evil, and believe not in Christ, and deny him, and serve not God, then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil; for after this manner doth the devil work, for he persuadeth no man to do good, no, not one; neither do his angels; neither do they who subject themselves unto him. (Moroni 7:15-17)Although some have tried to find ways to reconcile the scriptures with a belief in evolution, Darwin and many others have been unable to do so (for more information see WHY DARWINISM MATTERS).
What of all the evidence that science has found? Unfortunately because of misinterpretations (picture taken from Historical Geology 498), misrepresentations (picture taken from Historical Geology 522), and over-believe in Uniformitarianism ideas, scientists have created an impressive mirage that many mistake for the truth.
Just briefly, lets look at what we would find in the fossil record if Adam's Fall was the means of bringing death and reproductive powers to the world. All things would begin to reproduce, fill the earth, and die. All the plants and animals would not reproduce, fill the earth, and become fossils at the same rate though. Things that could reproduce fastest (with the shortest gestation period) would naturally fill the earth the fastest. Without as many predators, the fastest reproducing-usually the least complex-organisms would rule the earth. As the more complex organisms caught up though, they would naturally begin to take over. In order to find a fossil, the organism has to die and be buried in perfect conditions. The likely hood of this happening is increased when there are more organisms dieing.
Once you overcome dating problem (see GEOLOGIC DATING METHODS) the fossil record seems not to testify of evolution, but of the Fall of Adam and the scriptures.
As has been shown here and elsewhere, the theory of Evolution is incompatible with a literal interpretation of the scriptures and with majority of the modern apostles teaching. The most convincing test though is the test of the Holy Ghost. Ask God about evolution. He'll answer.