Evolution-based textbooks teach that everything around us is evolving all the time, usually in a slow and steady way. But one recent paper claims that evolution can happen much more quickly and can even be observed in a lifetime.
What evidence do they use to back up their claim? Bighorn sheep are now growing horns that are 10% smaller due to being targeted by trophy hunters. Growing smaller horns, they say, is a way for the bighorn sheep “to adapt and minimize the risk to their species.”
Researchers are calling this adaptation a “rapid evolutionary interplay between hunter and hunted” and a modern-day example of evolutionary change.
But are they actually observing evolution?
Well, the horns are different sizes, but they’re still just horns. And the bighorn sheep are still… bighorn sheep.
So how do we understand this from a biblical perspective?
Microevolution and Macroevolution Aren’t the Same Thing!
To understand the problem with the paper’s claim, we need to understand the difference between macroevolution and microevolution.
Microevolution:Small-scale changes in populations. For example, the different beak sizes Darwin observed among finches.
Macroevolution:Large-scale changes in populations that allow them to evolve into entirely different species over time. For example, the claim that apes evolved into human beings over millions of years.
So what’s going on with the bighorn sheep? Simply put, hunters are killing sheep with bigger horns, causing them to die off. This leaves the sheep with smaller horns to reproduce. As more and more of these sheep reproduce, what will they give birth to? That’s right—bighorn sheep with smaller horns!
This is not molecules-to-man evolution. This is microevolution, and it’s something we observe within species all the time.
Why Microevolution Will Never Lead to Macroevolution
Some may wonder, “But if the bighorn sheep keep adapting in small ways like this, can’t they eventually evolve into a new species?”
The simple answer is no, they can’t. You see, in order for macroevolution to work, species need to gain new genetic information. This new information is vital if they’re going to gain entirely new traits.
But when natural selection causes species to adapt in small ways (microevolution), organisms aren’t gaining any new genetic information. In fact, no one has ever observed species gaining new information in this way. That’s because information can’t come from non-information just as life can’t come from non-life!
Instead, genetic information comes from our Creator God, who made all living creatures according their kinds. And as species adapt, they do so within their kind. (For example, the bighorn sheep is adapting within its sheep/goat kind.)
So-called “rapid evolution” won’t happen within our lifetimes because, well, it doesn’t exist!
Learn More About Microevolution
Confused about the difference between microevolution and macroevolution?
At Answers TV, you’ll find helpful videos that explain the vast differences and show you why we can trust God’s Word over man’s secular ideas.
Most public schools teach evolutionary theory as fact. This can have a serious impact on the faith of many unprepared Christian students. Is there any way to prepare ourselves and our kids for this secular attack on faith? Yes, there is!
Join John and Jane as they explore the challenges to evolutionary theory and why the Bible makes the most sense of the scientific evidence. This is an essential video for Christian students attending junior high to college.