The Best Argument for Creation? Sex


(Austin) #1

Hello all.

I came across this article on Tim Challies site. I’m looking for an evangelical, evolutionary creationist (EEC) response to this article. Others are free to chime in, obviously :slight_smile: but I’ll mainly be focusing my attention on those you are EEC.

I recognize that adherents to EC believe in God’s creating through evolution but how does that explain sex? How can evolution account for that without doing away with the beauty of God’s intention for husband and wife, according to the Scriptures?

Looking forward to your thoughts!

https://isgenesishistory.com/why-sex-is-the-best-argument-for-creation-against-evolution/

EDIT: I adhere to EC. Per Christy’s comment below, I thought I should make that clear. I’m asking the question based on the premises of the article and looking for an evangelical response to the premises in the article. Hopefully that clears it up for anyone else who seeks to answer the article. :slight_smile:


(Christy Hemphill) #2

I haven’t read the article yet, but I thought I’d point out that you have an implied premise here that if something evolved it can’t have meaning and purpose. If that premise were granted, we’d have a much bigger problem than sex. Human life would have no meaning and purpose either.


(Phil) #3

And another thought is that if the purpose of sex is found in “the beauty of God’s intention for husband and wife,” why do other animals have sex?

Of course, I hold that there is a sacred and special bond that sex in the marriage relationship has, but that is not to be confused with biologic function.


(Austin) #4

Sorry, Christy! Allow me to clarify:

I adhere to EC and believe that things can have meaning and purpose, even it has evolved.

I was trying to word my question in a way that was consistent with the premises of the article, not my own beliefs. I think, at least on the surface, it can be a good argument against EC and so I’m looking for well thought out answers. I do think you put your finger on one of the main issues, though!


(Austin) #5

Phil,

So would you say that the only purpose of sex within marriage is procreation? I’m a bit confused by what you said and so want to understand :slight_smile: Thanks!


(Phil) #6

No, I said:

By that, I understand that sex can be a wonderful thing the strengthens and enhances relationships. However, our society does tend to place too much emphasis on it both in the church and in secular society, leading to unreasonable expectations, and often leading to feelings of inadequacy and disappointment.
Many marriages are sexless either due to age and physical infirmities, or other disabilities. That is not to say those marriages cannot be just as meaningful and close as those in which sex plays a role. There is more to life and much more to marriage than sex, though sometimes you would not know it if you listen to some in the church and most in secular society.


(Austin) #7

That makes sense. I can see where you’re coming from!


(Christy Hemphill) #8

“These are things we regularly experience, but for which evolutionary models don’t have reasonable explanations.”

The evolutionary model accounts for the diversity of life on planet earth. Faulting it for not explaining the entire range of human experience is silly. There are lots of things it does not explain. Weather is something we regularly experience that evolution can’t explain either.

“That is the power of sex. God made it to be one of the most important parts of His creation.”

Is anyone denying that sexual reproduction is important to the evolutionary model? If you believe evolution is a process created and orchestrated by God, I don’t really understand where the conflict lies.

““Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” Jesus talks about it when He is asked about divorce. Paul talks about it when he’s explaining our relationship to God.”

Right, but you don’t have to be a creationist to affirm the authority of those verses, you just have to believe the Bible is God’s revelation. Every EC I know affirms the institution of marriage and the biblical ethics surrounding sexuality. Because once again, evolution explains the diversity of life. It doesn’t tell you anything about how to live life.

“Sex is the perfect example of inconceivable irreducible complexity and design.”

This is a classic ID argument from incredulity. Lots of things that can be explained on one level by science are very difficult to understand without years of training. There were some good reviews here a while back about the ID idea that human intuition is a reliable guide when it comes to scientific facts. Many scientific realities are counter-intuitive, because our intuitions are shaped by our embodied experiences. Our embodied experiences limit our abilities to intuit what happens at the atomic level or the level of the galaxy or the level of time spans many orders of magnitudes removed from our lifespans.

“But, according to evolutionary theory, all of it ultimately happened by chance. Sex just came to be through a series of random processes, over long periods of time, without any overarching purpose.”

This is a classic misrepresentation of evolutionary processes. Only the mutation part of natural selection is random. (And random in the scientific sense does not rule out teleology, it just means it is not something we can predict from the outside) All the other selective pressures involved are not random at all. They are tied to reproductive fitness and environment. It seems especially ironic to say that sex came to be without any purpose, when actually reproduction is the driving force behind evolution. And reproduction has been sexual since very early on in the history of life.

“In fact, when you actually consider the magnitude of the situation, 540 million years—the conventional date for the start of complex life—doesn’t seem like nearly enough time.”

Classic example of creationists not understanding what they are talking about. Sexual reproduction did not begin with complex life. A quick google search says sexual reproduction began 1.2 billion years ago with protists.

“The question of which came first during this long development, the male or the female, is an impossible question: don’t you have to have both to have offspring?”

Actually, no. We have examples of species today that reproduce both sexually and asexually. I have heard creationists argue that it is stupid to believe that some species had to sit around waiting for males to evolve man parts and females to evolve lady parts so they could mate. That is stupid. And no one argues it happened that way.

“The truth is that sexual dimorphism —different, unique characteristics between males and females—is also a hard thing to explain from an evolutionary origins perspective.”
Meaning what? He hasn’t read any articles on it he understood? It is not true that there is no evolutionary model for it.

“If it’s impossible for us even to understand all the aspects of sex, it’s clearly impossible for it to have evolved in a slow, stepwise fashion.”
Not good logic. It’s the logical equivalent of saying, “if it is impossible for us to understand all the aspects of the economy, it is clearly impossible for us to explain in a step-wise fashion what led to the housing collapse of 2008.”

“Instead, when you stop and think about it, Genesis provides a far better explanation. The immediate, fiat creation by God in a short span of time (just a few days) is a far better reason for all the incredibly complex aspects of sex.”

This conflates the meaning of “explanation” meaning process and “explanation” meaning reason. Evolution explains a process, not a reason. There is no conflict between accepting the evolutionary process and the biblical reason.

“Ultimately, sex is about the joyful pleasure of personal relationships.”

Bare assertion. And what are we talking about? All sex in the created world. Not so much for male black widows. All humanity? Not true for women in many parts of the world.

“Genesis explains why there is sexual dimorphism in people.”
Agreed. Evolution explains how.

“Genesis also explains why sex is considered a wonderful, spiritual experience by many people. Unlike evolutionary theory—which sees sex as just a higher animal function—”
Science doesn’t speak to spiritual experiences. It is poor logic to then conclude that because science excludes the supernatural/spiritual dimension in explanations it is making a claim that natural/physical experiences are all there is to reality.

“The essential sexual dimorphism embedded in every part of the creation points…”

Except there isn’t always neatly binary sexual dimorphism. That’s a sticky issue. If that were true, why did God create intersex individuals? Are they less human?

“Of course, this may seem new to you. I realize many Christians avoid talking about sex and even get uncomfortable when it comes up. Few have heard it discussed openly in their churches or families.”

Projection. Sex was never a taboo topic in my church or family. We talked about it far too much at youth group, that’s for sure.

“So when evolution comes up next, start talking about sex. I can assure you it will lead to a very interesting and unexpected conversation.”

Hopefully, if you are talking to someone who knows what they are talking about. :slight_smile:


(Christy Hemphill) #9

And especially if you listen to certain manly wings of the Neo-Cal movement.


#10

How does creation explain the various intersexual conditions?


#11

The big advantage of sexual reproduction is the phenomenon of “crossing over,” which gives us diploids variation in the gene pool. Also, it helps us get rid of at least some bad mutations. If you’ll study genetics you’ll learn about this.


(Austin) #12

Great stuff here, Christy. Thank you for taking time to respond to this in a helpful manner.


(Austin) #13

True, though I’m currently a part of that movement, more or less :wink:


(Christy Hemphill) #14

I’ll overlook it, as long as you resist the peer pressure to grow one of those venerably hideous beards, and as long as you refrain from referring to your wife as “my smoking hot bride” from a microphone. Those are my two main issues with Neo-Cals.


(Austin) #15

Haha. Well I have too much respect for my wife to do that. Plus, I’m an egalitarian and moving away from reformed thinking. I was having a bit of fun!


(Austin) #16

…that’s a soft spot. I didn’t inherit that gene from my father. :frowning:


(Christy Hemphill) #17

Almost all of my favorite Bible scholars are Reformed in the general non-Lutheran sense of the word. But you can have generally Reformed theology without fully embracing 5-point Calvinism and without facial hair. (I can’t grow a beard either.)

I’ve been slogging through Michael Bird’s Evangelical Theology for a couple years now. (I am easily distracted by the seven other books I’m reading at any given time) I love him, and he only gets too Reformed for me once in a while, and I forgive him because he is so entertaining about it. He wrote an interesting little book about the biblical arguments that convinced him to move away from complementarianism called Bourgeois Babes, Bossy Wives, and Bobby Haircuts. It’s worth checking out if you hang with an SBC crowd.


(Laura) #18

No, no, you’re supposed to refer to her as something like a “means of grace in my life” or some such phrase that makes it clear she is a mere conduit and could have done nothing to actually earn praise. :stuck_out_tongue:


(Austin) #19

Yeah, I love Mike Bird. His book is what got me started down the road to egalitarianism. I haven’t fully embraced it but I’m close.

Yeah, I do. Though I don’t necessarily identify as such. I have too many contrarian ideas. I just care about missions and they do that well.


(Phil) #20

Looked the book up, enjoyed your Amazon review! (Had to be yours unless you have a twin also named Christy)