BioLogos: Teaching Evolution to Students of Faith

Political rhetoric. No, it is science. The same science that extends human life expectancy and provides for the improvement of the human conditions for billions of people.

Don’t forget the living dinosaurs called birds.

Phylogenetics. If humans evolved from a common ancestor shared with other species then you should see a correlation between phylogenetic trees based on morphology and genetics.

You can read about the nested hierarchy here:

The section detailing how phylogenetics is used to test evolution is found here:

I respectively disagree with you here and believe the existence of the NCSE supports my claim. Evolutions grand claims like universal common ancestry are untested and are clearly ideological in nature.

Those claims are tested here:

By reading Grandmother Fish :rofl:

If you want more details see Neil Shuban’s “Your Inner Fish”

Can you describe the test that shows we evolved from fish? How do you reconcile the different proteins that emerged. How do you reconcile the difference is splicing patterns. How do you reconcile how gills turned into lungs. How do you reconcile how fins turned into arms and legs? How do reconcile the origin of hair, skin, consciousness, abstract thought.

The Theobald paper shows similarities which is evidence for common descent. The bigger problem is you need to explain the differences.

The claims of evolution are way ahead of the evidence. So lets go ahead and teach pre schoolers that an untested hypothesis is true.

I’m always puzzled by the teach the controversy stuff. What kind of time do they think teachers have? You have a limited amount of time to cover a wide range of subjects. Teaching the “controversy” would take up half a semester


Did gills turn into lungs? Lungfish have both and depend on their gills until their lungs develop.


These are children. Do you tell your kids whether Genesis is a tested hypothesis?

I thought we could not teach religion in schools. :slight_smile:

Honestly, I never taught my kids about genesis. If I did I would not claim it as a science text.

Patrick, I think you good heart felt guy and want to do the right thing. I have studied and discussed evolution for the last three years and the whole theory (at least its grand claims) is on a pretty slippery slope right now.

I saw earlier you asking questions how mutation could lead to function and you are on the right track of questioning. Lets get it driven to fact or at least a tested hypothesis before we teach shaky claims to young children as truth.

Then remove the untested speculation from the material.

I have a lot of questions in a lot of scientific areas. Cosmology, quantum mechanics, OOL, human evolution. But in teaching children the basics of science we have provisional truths that are very solid. Evolution is one of them.

Gotcha. Sorry, I was kidding at the end there.

I agree that more freedom in the dialog would be very helpful.

@colewd, @Dan_Eastwood, @Patrick, @Kathryn_Applegate, @Michael_Callen, @T_aquaticus

I want to commend EVERYONE here for keeping this potentially explosive topic to be calm and collected, informative and engaged. This is an important topic. I’m very proud that it is unfolding in a calm way, free of ad hominem. Thank you.

@colewd you have been respectful here, though you have been a outnumbered on this thread. Many here, including me, are convinced you are wrong. However, there are many people in society that agree with you. Thank you for representing them so well here.

Everyone, please continue this pattern here and in other threads.


I am telling you it is not. Put away your bias (i have bias also) and follow the yellow brick road. The untested claims in cosmology string theory are generally represented for what they are. Evolution is not.

The NCSE drove the scientific community to have a unified theory of biology way before it was ready. This is truly a house of cards.

The NCSE doesn’t drive the scientific community. It is the other way around. The scientific community is at the cutting edge of evolutionary science. It is making the breakthroughs and discoveries on a daily basis. Evolutionary science is now big business and has had a huge positive impact on the lives of billions of people.
NCSE packages those results and breakthoughs into factual teaching aides to teach the next generation of evolutionary scientists. NCSE is a fine organization and I support it through the Richard Dawkins TIES initiative.

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You are right, but that’s the best part of learning. I graduated 35 years ago, but I can still remember having spirited conversation over topics that people felt strongly about. Getting young people to learn how to exchange ideas with civility, like we do here (most of the time) is a great educational experience. To limit discussion over what has arguably become the central tenet of science is to lose an opportunity to allow a young mind to seek the truth and let the chips fall where they may, IMHO.

With all due respect this is not the case. NCSE has a lot of pull in what goes in the text books at least when Eugene Scott was running it. There is a very big gap now between the text books and what the scientific community is discussing.

So what do consider is the cutting edge of evolutionary science and how has it shored up the predictions like universal common descent?

NCSE has power because, as @Patrick, says…

Also, Scott has been wise not to allow NSCE to become an anti-religious organization, to her credit. I’ve often seen ID advocates very angry about this, because they can’t legitimately her personal atheism against NSCE, because they have been good about holding back from attacking religion.

That’s why a philosophy class should be mandatory