During the famous Scopes Trial of 1925, Clarence Darrow, the lawyer defending evolutionist John T. Scopes, stated that “it is bigotry for public schools to teach only one theory of Origins … Let the children have their minds kept open, close no doors to their knowledge … shut no door to them, let them have both creation and evolution … The truth will win out in the end.”
Over 60 years later, the teaching of two origins still creates a controversy, but today it is over whether we should allow any presentation of the creation position. Many organizations, such as the ACLU and the Humanist Association, are waging a war against the teaching of creationism. Their concern is not just over the impact of creationism in scientific inquiry, but with its deeper religious implications.
Part of the controversy surrounding the teaching of creation is that it naturally demands accountability to God. God, as the Creator, holds the right of ownership over His creation and thus has absolute authority. Since He is the Creator and owner of our lives, He expects us to be proper stewards and to live according to the rules which He has established to preserve His property.
Consider, for example, a work of sculpture. The sculpture first belongs to the artist because he created it. The sculpture is his property, and if he loans it to someone for display, then that person must be a responsible steward over the sculptor’s property or be held accountable for any damages. The artist also may wish to sell the sculpture and the deed of ownership is then transferred to the one who pays the desired price.
Likewise, as a creation of God, we are His property and consequently are accountable for the way we live. We are His property not only because He created us, but because He paid the price for our lives. He paid the greatest price for mankind through His only Son, Jesus, who purchased us with His own blood. As we are reminded in I Corinthians 6:19-20, “do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: Therefore, glorify God in your body.”
God created us with a free will to make decisions, and with that free will He gave us the responsibility as stewards over our lives. Every person will stand before God at His judgment seat and render an account for every thought, word and deed (Matthew 12:36-37). Creation thus implies accountability:
Creation = Property = Stewardship = ACCOUNTABILITY
God gave us guidelines in the Bible so that we might be faithful stewards over the life He entrusted to us. God established laws to preserve our liberty, and for our best interests … not to put us under bondage. As the Creator of the universe, He is the supreme authority and knows what is right and wrong as outlined in His commandments. We are indebted to God, and our obedience is justly due Him, not a favor we perform.
Charles Montesqieu, a 16th century political philosopher, writer and jurist, wrote in his Spirit of Laws, “God is related to the universe, as Creator and Preserver; the laws by which He created all things are those by which He preserves them. He acts according to these rules because He knows them. He knows them because He made them; and He made them, because they are in relation to His wisdom and power …”
All laws are subject to the authority of God. As Sir William Blackstone, the eminent English jurist, once summarized in his Commentaries(which were once required reading for every student of law): “Man … must necessarily be subject to the laws of his Creator. This will of His maker is called the law of nature. This law of nature … is of course superior to any other. No human laws are of any validity, if contrary to this; and such of them as are valid derive all their force from this original.”
It was the supremacy of God’s law that was the basis for justice and law as written in the U.S. Constitution. The Constitution was upheld as supreme law because its authors recognized the Creator as the supreme Law Giver, and thus based it upon biblical principles. During this century, we have seen the erosion of the Constitution as supreme law and the emergence of case law. Case law is evolutionary in nature; the primary basis for verdicts is precedent, rather than moral absolutes. As a result, we have seen the legalization of sociological trends of America.
The reason for the popularity of this evolutionary approach to law is that man now can determine what is right and wrong and can justify his own actions. Without absolute standards, as those established by the Creator, any means for survival and existence can be justified depending upon society’s beliefs. The Nazi holocaust was executed in the name of social policy. Men embrace evolution because it implies that they are no longer accountable to abide by absolute moral standards.
The more evolution erodes the foundation of law and morality, the more people will resist authority and begin to set their own rules for living. In the days when there was no king in Israel, “Every man did what was right in his own eyes” (Judges 17:6). When the creationist view of origins is presented, a return to absolute standards of law and morality is the obvious conclusion of the argument. This is precisely why many refuse to accept creation: they must accept the fact that they are accountable to God for the way they live.
Men are without excuse in denying God’s rulership, “because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made …” (Romans 1:19-20).
Our obedience to God is demanded to ensure proper stewardship over our lives, and not just a request to follow the “Ten Suggestions.” If we choose to disobey the laws of the Creator, then there are consequences to pay. The final price for disobedience of God’s laws is eternal death (Romans 6:23).
The Book of Romans is an outline of the results of not acknowledging God as Creator and ultimate authority. Because people exchange the truth about God (as Creator) for a lie (evolution) and worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator, God gives them over to be totally controlled by their lusts and passions. “And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a base mind and to improper conduct …” (Romans 1:28).
Our society is faced with many of the immoral conditions described in the first chapter of Romans. It is of little surprise that we are beginning to see the widespread effect of not acknowledging and worshiping God as the Creator. The teaching of evolution has been the first step in bringing these cultural judgments upon our society.
Acknowledging God as the Creator is essential for obeying His laws and following the teachings of Jesus. Jesus knew the correlation between creation and obedience; “For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote of Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?” (John 5:46-47). We have already been given the testimony of Jesus through creation.
As creation is presented, the call for accountability is sounded as well. Since many wish to ignore the fact that they must stand before their Creator and give an account for the way they have lived, they try to silence the case for creation. They deliberately ignore the scientific facts and labor with all their effort to prevent the evidence for creation from being presented in the classroom. Nevertheless, even as Clarence Darrow admitted, we can be sure that “the truth will win out in the end” and it is the truth of the Creator that will set men free.