(August 8, 1990)
How does evolution explain a skunk?
The theory says: simple, one-celled organisms developed into complex creatures. Therefore, this defenseless little critter must have “evolved” its complex spray gun; yet in the battle of survival, what kept larger, “more evolved” creatures from killing it? Was It coincidence? Did wolves and coyotes just fail to notice this harmless black and white kitty? How did the skunk survive several eons without odor until its glands could develop this distinctive form of protection...?
I used to believe evolution was a valid theory. I remember arguing with my mother about it. She had all the biblical answers but nothing she could say convinced me. Finally, it was science that ran out of answers.
I was in my early 20's when a scientific statement caught my attention. It was: “energy is neither created or destroyed, only changed to a different form.” I wondered about a particular from of energy -- my life. If that scientific statement was true, then where did my life come from before I had it, and where would it go when I died? Heavy questions, but I only could conclude that, scientifically, my life would never end. I wasn’t sure if it began somewhere else or, if it did, where that might have been, but I knew the energy of my life must go somewhere after my body was done with it.
While trying to find answers to my questions, I read a book about reincarnation. Oddly, there was a verse of Scripture in that book, used out of context to support what I now know is an unbiblical belief. God had a purpose in it being there though. Psalms 119:130 says: “The entrance of thy words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.”
Ever walk out of darkness into a brightly lit room? You can’t see anything but light for quite a while. That is what happened to me. As I read that verse of Scripture with an open and questioning mind, the room seemed filled with the light of what God revealed to me.
The first truth He gave me was not about evolution or about where the energy of my life came from before I was born. I didn’t find out then where life would go after I died either. Instead, God showed me something far more important; He revealed the mystery of the identity of Jesus Christ. I suddenly knew, beyond any doubt, that He is God Almighty who came in human flesh.
I put the book aside and began reading God’s Book. He unfolded truth after truth. I saw my need as a sinner and asked Him to forgive me and come into my life. Only then was the whole question of my eternal destiny settled.
I saw other things in Scripture that amazed me. One was that God knew all about me before I was even born, because He made me. The Psalmist expressed the delight I felt: “I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made...” (Psalm 139).
The Bible also showed me something science didn’t know back then, that each creature has it’s own kind of cell structure. A skunk could never have been a snake, they are not made of the same kind of cells. Science now says each creature has skin cells, heart tissue cells, brain cells, all interdependent but none like the other. Such design demands a Designer.
Another thing I learned was, “by faith we understand... that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible.” Christians understand creation by faith. Faith is not a subjective wish that makes something true only in our own mind; it is a gift from God that enables us to see realities that sin otherwise blinds us to... thus I couldn’t accept my mother’s arguments until God dealt with my sin.
I don’t like the smell of a skunk, but I am glad they have their distinctive odor. It reminds me that God wisely planned every feature of every living thing. It also reminds me of His grace; He opened my eyes to spiritual realities – far more than the mystery of how a skunk got its weapon!