The End of Evolution?

The End of Evolution?

R. Albert Mohler, Jr.
October 7, 2008

The evolutionist is locked into an intellectual box from which there is no rescue.  Evolutionary theory is naturalistic by necessity — everything must be explained in purely naturalistic terms.  Only nature can explain nature, and there is no other source of meaning or truth.  Thus, in the end the theory of evolution — and the theory of evolution alone — must explain everything about humanity.

This predicament was made clear in a lecture recently given by geneticist Steve Jones at University College London.  Speaking on his chosen topic, “Evolution is Over,” Jones argued that human evolution has reached an end because of changes in human health and human behavior.

This argument stands in stark contrast to those offered by other evolutionists, who now call on humanity to use modern reproductive technologies and techniques designed to enhance the species.  Some go so far as to argue that humans must employ these technologies and direct evolution in order to save the species from itself.

Jones, known for his 2002 book, Y: The Descent of Men.  In that book, Jones argued that males were something of a temporary necessity for the evolutionary process.  He minimized the role of the male to that of providing male gametes.  The male exists to “fecundate” his partner.  That’s it.  Everything else can be done by females, who are going to live longer anyway.

Now, Jones argues that human evolution is at a standstill because one of the crucial engines of evolutionary change, genetic mutation, is stalled.  Jones explained that evolution moves forward by natural selection, mutation, and random change.  Mutation is stalled, at least in part, because fewer older men are having babies.

As The Times [London] explains:

This is because cell divisions in males increase with age. “Every time there is a cell division, there is a chance of a mistake, a mutation, an error,” he said. “For a 29-year old father [the mean age of reproduction in the West] there are around 300 divisions between the sperm that made him and the one he passes on – each one with an opportunity to make mistakes.

“For a 50-year-old father, the figure is well over a thousand. A drop in the number of older fathers will thus have a major effect on the rate of mutation.”

Professor Jones added: “In the old days, you would find one powerful man having hundreds of children.” He cites the fecund Moulay Ismail of Morocco, who died in the 18th century, and is reputed to have fathered 888 children.

Jones went on to argue that better health and rates of infant survival have also removed some engines of mutation.  Add to that the fact that human populations are now so diverse, with marriage patterns commonly crossing ethnic and racial lines.  As Jones explained, ““Small populations which are isolated can evolve at random as genes are accidentally lost. World-wide, all populations are becoming connected and the opportunity for random change is dwindling. History is made in bed, but nowadays the beds are getting closer together. We are mixing into a global mass, and the future is brown.”

Steve Jones offered a public lecture at University College London, but he also offers a larger lesson on the inherent limitations of the evolutionary worldview.  Darwinism has to explain everything — even why some people accept evolutionary theory and others do not.

Evolutionary theory cannot possibly explain the totality of human experience, much less the reality of human origins.  Evolutionists — if consistent — believe that every human experience, every emotion, every physical attribute, every hope, and every fear is simply a feature developed by means of natural selection.

That’s a cold theory, and it just doesn’t make sense to the vast majority of Americans — and it shouldn’t.  The Christian worldview offers a far more satisfying, true, and understandable account of human origins and human existence.

In any event, human evolution is now over.  You heard it from Steve Jones.

R. Albert Mohler, Jr.

I am always glad to hear from readers. Write me using the contact form. Follow regular updates on Twitter at @albertmohler.

Subscribe via email for daily Briefings and more (unsubscribe at any time).