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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 31

Is Evolution opposed to the Bible

Is Evolution opposed to the Bible.

But even if shown to be consistent with Theism, can Evolution be harmonised with the Bible? We have been told, with much emphasis, that it cannot. And I sympathise with the logic of the heart which instantly responds, "Then it cannot be true!" For there are thousands of men and women who know that the Bible is true, as surely as they know any fact of experience and consciousness, more surely than they can know any fact of abstract science. Whatever is noblest in them has its spring in Bible teaching; every better impulse, every movement of their nature towards good, every sacred feeling that lifts them above the material and the sensual, derives its origin thence. From the Bible has come to them the breath of spiritual life. Take away the Bible and they gasp in a vacuum. And when the Bible is gone, and with it the provision for their spiritual nurture, they will care little what you make out about their relationship to the brute. They will feel that they have already ceased to be men. Life will not be worth living, nor science worth knowing, if they are to be merely mechanism pulled by strings; and discussions about man's origin will seem to them utter futilities whilst they are left in the dark about his destiny. It will be an evil day for the world when this instinct perishes, when what seems to invalidate the Bible is heard of without alarm, or allowed to establish itself without challenge.

But, with respect to Evolution, there is no real cause for alarm. What I foresee is the smashing of much ecclesiastical chinaware, the levelling of many a scholastic house-of-cards, the ruthless brushing away of cobwebberies spun out of theological brains,—all that I foresee. But the Bible will emerge from the ordeal unscathed—nay, if I mistake not, having a firmer hold on the intelligent veneration and trust of mankind than before.