To consider this question we need first need to understand some words and their definitions. First let’s understand these.
- Science – systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation.
- Evolution – change in the gene pool of a population from generation to generation by such processes as mutation, natural selection, and genetic drift.
- Natural Selection – the process by which forms of life having traits that better enable them to adapt to specific environmental pressures, as predators, changes in climate, or competition for food or mates, will tend to survive and reproduce in greater numbers than others of their kind, thus ensuring the perpetuation of those favorable traits in succeeding generations.
- Mutation – a sudden departure from the parent type in one or more heritable characteristics, caused by a change in a gene or a chromosome.
- Genetic drift – random changes in the frequency of alleles in a gene pool, usually of small populations.
- God – the one Supreme Being, the creator and ruler of the universe.
These definitions may seem to be somewhat contrary to what you’ve thought. For example, evolution, as we have all been told, is the changing of one kind into another. For example, dogs changing into cats allegedly “millions of years”. Using the definition above however, refers to the change in the gene pool of a population. There are literally hundreds of thousands of different animal species, and for many of them we have population estimates. These estimates form the basis of our endangered species lists as well as the complimentary rehabilitation and re-population programs. There is for example, a Bengal tiger population in India, a lion population in Africa, a kangaroo population in Australia, a kiwi(bird) population in New Zealand and a human population on every continent and nation.
Let’s ask the question, is there variations within animal kinds? Indeed, we can see this much every day. Dogs for example, can be bred to all kinds of shapes, sizes, abilities and personalities but at what time to they become cats or horses?
Natural selection is the survival of animals which are better suited to a particular region, due to a variety of factors, climate, water availability, water salinity, food supply, predators, prey and competitors for their needs. Here are some examples of natural selection:
- White coloured moths survive better in arctic regions because they are better camouflaged from predators.
- Koalas live in Australia because there is an abundance of eucalypts.
- Long haired dogs such as huskies or Alaskan malamutes survive better in cold arctic conditions.
- Polar bears live in the polar regions which camouflage them while hunting.
- The vanilla bean flower grows only where the vanilla bee is available to pollinate it.
- Snakes and reptiles thrive in hot climates.
- Certain species of fish only live in fresh water and others only live in salt water.
In all of these examples, nowhere do snakes turn into lizards, or huskies turn into polar bears. Huskies and polar bears quite likely share the same resources, and wild huskies would very likely prey on the same animals as polar bears, but we never find them turning into polar bears. The same is true of snakes and lizards. At what point do we ever find snakes turning into lizards, huskies turning into bears? Likewise mutations and genetic drift can cause certain changes within a kind, but not a kind changing into another kind.
So is evolution science? Sure, as long as the evolution we’re talking about is micro-evolution and not macro-evolution. Micro-evolution is the changes within a kind. There are many different kinds of dogs, but they’re still all dogs. Macro-evolution, refers to a kind changing into a completely different kind, for example dogs changing into cats. Micro-evolution is seen and can be experimented and repeated, this forms the basis of genetic manipulation. We’ve all seen wheat growing in the field, and a few of us have seen spelt wheat growing. Typically, farmers would have retained the wheat plants which grew taller and had a bigger wheat head to sow the next generation of wheat, the change over time means that wheat grown today has much bigger heads than spelt wheat which was discovered in a 3000 year-old Pharoah’s tomb. This has lead to an organisation of the existing genetic information, rather than new information being made. The difference is fairly obvious, but it’s also fairly obvious that we are still looking at wheat and only change within a kind.
Science, being observable, experiment-able and repeatable can refer to a vast mosaic of things. This blog and the servers which host is are built on mathematics which believe it or not, is a science. Science also includes mobile phones, physics and Newton’s laws of motions, and Magellan’s expedition at a time when people believed the world was flat. Yes, this also includes micro-evolution but not macro-evolution. All of these are repeatable and observable.
Back to the question, does science disprove God? Based on what we have seen here, perhaps the question should be can evolution disprove God? We have seen that the only kind of evolution which meets the criteria for science is micro-evolution. I mean how can you observe and repeat something which allegedly happened “millions” of years ago? Providing a story of “millions of years ago” doesn’t prove that something happened that way, and furthermore no one has ever been able to repeat it happening. Can science which is knowledge of the physical and material things ever prove or disprove someone who is immaterial and supernatural? We can prove that grass exists, because it is physical, material and we can observe and experiment. We know that water boils at 100C at 1MPA air pressure because it is physical and we can observe and repeat it over and over again.
A news article went around in May 2017, which claimed in it’s headline that “scientists believe they may have discovered a parallel universe”, you can read the article here. This so-called “evidence” is nothing more than a very large section of space which is colder and more empty than the remainder of space which might have been caused by another universe colliding with ours. Can you see a problem here? Upon reading the article in-depth it becomes apparent that these people have done a lot of thinking as to what would be the conditions following two universes colliding. “Wow! Bingo! Yahtzee! We found those conditions! It must have been caused by another universe colliding with out own.” This is not science, as it is not repeatable or observable.
Science cannot prove or disprove the existence of God Who is immaterial and supernatural.