With all the fads out there promoting good health, better exercise and more nutritious diets, are humans becoming better, staying about the same or gradually declining?
A lot of scientists believe we’re just animals constantly evolving and getting better. That’s what evolution requires us to believe—slow and gradual changes that supposedly make us better over millions of years.
Science Writer Lori Oliwenstein remarked in Discover Magazine: “From the first cell that coalesced in the primordial soup to the magnificent intricacies of Homo sapiens, the evolution of life—as everyone knows—has been one long drive toward greater complexity. The only trouble with what everyone knows…is that there is no evidence it’s true.”
So what does the evidence say?
For one thing, there’s the fossil evidence. Human fossils. When scientists dig up human fossil remains, they actually discover that humans were much stronger in the ancient past. Bigger bones, taller stature and strength that made them even faster than today’s fastest humans, like Usain Bolt, according to Australian anthropologist Peter McAllister.
Ancient writings, like the Epic of Gilgamesh, describe the extraordinary strength of the Sumerian King and his battle with a dragon-like creature. And Beowulf, born the son of Ecgtheow in AD 495, was known for his incredible size and strength.
The Bible also tells of individuals like Goliath, who was over nine feet tall, and King Og of Bashan, whose bed was nearly 14 feet long! And the book of Genesis records the genealogies of many men who lived over 900 years.
But compared to the humans that lived in the ancient world, how do you and I measure up, especially with all of our advanced technology and knowledge?
Look inside your genes.
Current research in genetics actually shows an overall decline in our strength and size in every generation. There’s even a mutation tracking program called Mendel’s Accountant that shows how mutations affect the fitness of every generation. The scientific evidence says we’re not getting better, but worse.
And, of course, there’s the D-word. Death is inevitable for everyone. There’s just no getting over it.
So, if human beings are declining every generation, how long do you think we’ll last?
Since I'm not a scientist, I cannot give a concrete answer from models that predict a genetic "doom's day" for humanity. Based on the content found throughout the entire Bible, and specifically in Revelation, I believe functional humanity will still be here up until the destruction of the current universe.
Jim M says:
Obviously you accept that paleolithic humans did indeed exist, which creationists would question. We believe that most fossils that we find today were formed at the time of Noah’s global flood or soon after and so could not be paleolithic as you imply. That is simply the evolutionary interpretation of the fossils from an evolutionary worldview. But I think we can all agree that height has changed at times over the course of human history, even if we disagree when that change occurred.
But height alone is not evidence of Darwinian evolution per se. A change in height is simply change within a particular species and creationists also believe in this type of change.
Look at dogs today. We have some very large/tall dogs and some very small/short dogs. They all “evolved” from a common ancestor in whose genome the information necessary for large and small dogs previously existed. As certain genes were selected for by chance or through breeding, the dogs height changed accordingly. Again, this is not the kind of evolutionary change that Darwin needs to prove his case as the genetic information already existed. We need to see new genes coded for and new organs arise through spontaneous means and that is the type of change that we do not observe happening.
In response to January: You only use the criteria of height for your argument. The author also refers to strength of bones, how robust we were. I would also like to point to intelligence. The architural accomplishments of the past cannot be replicated with today's technological advances. They had no crane or computer, and yet look what they did.
Please note that the original source for this article can be found at: http://www.icr.org/article/genetic-decline-humanity/.
No. I'd like to see your "scientific evidence" in detail. Paleolithic humans were 5'9" and 5'3" (male and female, respectively). Neolithic people (when agriculture started, aka biblical people) were 5'3" and 5'. Early modern period people were 5'6" and 5'1". The current global average is 5'9" and 5'4". This has varied/varies in different locations. The Cheyenne people of North America were considered some of the tallest people in the world at the time of westward expansion, males were around 5"10. The people of the Dinaric Alps are the tallest people now, males averaging 6'1". These figures have fluctuated throughout history because of wars, nutrition, geography, climate change, medical care, AIDS, etc.
People that lived at the time when the Bible was being compiled were shorter than both their ancestors and descendants. So no, your information and theory don't match up to reality.
Do you really think that the decline in fitness is due to heredety, or environment? "High Technology" comes with a price. Not to sound like a Sierra Club member, but we have made the temporary dwelling place we call the planet more toxic in one century than all of mankind has during recorded history. Nuclear waste, dioxins, Agent Orange, formaldehyde, and other carcinogens could be attacking our DNA, not to mention all the other hazardous material that is formed as a byproduct of the lifestyle in the "Developed" nations. I know it's just conjecture, but I think there has to be a cumulative effect of pollution on the fitness of the human race.
If evolution is change over time, then even creationists believe in evolution, albeit change in the wrong direction - from the complex to simple, genetic rich to genetic poor, This kind of change will never get us from molecules to man. A more accurate term for the change we see happening around us is "devolution" rather than "evolution".