Evolution and Unexplained Attributes of Plants

FImagerom the title I selected for this post, one might think this a boring article on why science is wrong and why religion is right.  After all, it appears that modern American Christians are hell bent on showing the science as a medium is from Satan and not from the Creator of all things.  My daughter, a home school student, is constantly bombarded with “science” books that try to discount modern science by layering biblical philosophy on top of scientific evidence, no matter how many problem these books create regarding other theological points in the long run.

In reality, my plan today is to use science to not only show an inconsistency in it’s philosophy in regard to evolution but also to challenge the modern Christian’s thought regarding a topic that is generally accepted as “off limits” for Christians.  The topic is one of my favorites when it comes to making Christians feel uncomfortable.  The topic is drugs.

Don’t misunderstand me here, I am in no way giving a free pass to Christians to get high, stoned, or wasted.  I am not advocating taking a trip into another dimension! What I am advocating is giving some thought to the words of the Creator when He uttered “and it was good”

A common scientific principle of evolution is that evolution does not produce attributes in organisms that are not directly beneficial to the organism. If we see an attribute that seems to benefit others and not the organism then we have a problem. There is, of course, the possibility that some attribute is no longer beneficial and is left over from previous evolutionary cycles but some attributes don’t seem to ever benefit the organism and this can be problematic to the theory of evolution.  Take for instance plants.  Plants have certain attributes that seem only benefit others.  Marijuana has Tetrahydrocannabinol  (THC), The Poppy has morphine, codeine, papaverine, thebaine and noscapine, and of course Heroin.  All of these ingredients benefit others and no theory of evolution has sufficiently produced a benefit to the actual flower or plant.  So the question remains, why were these attributes included in the design of the plant?  This is problematic to Christians as well given that the concept of self medicating is generally considered a no, no in Christians thought.  This however, is a man-made concept.  People throughout history have used plants as medication and modern medicine didn’t really exist until the 11th century.  So if God is timeless, then He certainly doesn’t forbid the use of plants for medicine.  In fact most of our drugs started from a natural component and it wasn’t until patent medicine became a money making opportunity in the 17th century that we see synthetics hit the market.  What then do we say about this?  Are we to assume that natural medicine from plants was good then but now we know better?  President candidate Mitt Romney made this point when he was talking to a gentleman suffering from ALS.  When confronted by the man in a wheel chair, the man said he has tried all modern medicines to help him deal with his ALS.  He stated that only Cannabis seems to help.  Romney, a “religious” man, stated “Have you tried any of the synthetic marijuana?”  He then went on to say, “I will never accept that marijuana is medicine”  What struck me about this comment is that Romney trusts modern science more than hid creator!  He assumes that science can make medicine but God can only create drugs!  In what world would anyone advocate the use of a chemicals created by a fallible human over that of a product made by God Himself?  In addition, Romney is saying that even though Marijuana and synthetic alternatives have similar active ingredients, Marijuana is bad and the same drug in synthetic forms is magically good!  So man’s creation is good and God’s is sinful?  Really?  Granted in many cases these man-made chemicals are better to treat an individual symptom with but in the case of synthetic THC, they simply are not and everyone knows it.  Never mind the side effects from synthetics!  The reason for Romney’s statement is a testament to what campaign contributions and bad theology can do to the mind of the ignorant.  Romney is unable to see the truth through 100 plus years of taboo and neither are many of my Christian brothers and sisters.  This is especially true with Marijuana.  We see that the Opium Poppy produces pain medicines, and we see the the Coca Leaf produces anesthetics but we can’t seem to find any benefit to Pot!  Science seems to have the same problem.  There really doesn’t seem to be any reason for THC, or Opium in evolution!  I guess science and many Christians actually agree on something! 

What if, however, we are to assume that these plants were created and not evolved?  What then might we say about These ingredients?  What do we know about the bible regarding God and man?

1. God created all things

2. God uttered that all things are good

3. That God gave man all plants and animals

4. God told us to be good stewards of the land

5. Man is a bunch sinful depraved abusers


Given these five points, is it not entirely possible to show that the reason drugs exist is for our use?  Abuse is part of the human condition, created during the fall so the fact that people abuse drugs is not all together concerning regarding my argument.  After all, it is part of the human nature to be depraved.  We are in the constant state of abuse so to do anything other than abuse would change the very nature of man.  This nature is only changed when God Himself changes it though the replacement of our hearts and making us righteous in Christ.  Our abuse is not relevant to God’s creation for a holy intended purpose.  If it were relevant, humanity would not exist either!  


My point it this.  God created these drugs and I believe He created them for a holy intended purpose. Though evolution will continue to present arguments to remove God from the equation, it will always be working with one hand tied behind its back.  You see we, as Christians, understand that all things were created good and God created ingredients in plants that can help heal the body, reduce pain and even provide for a little relaxation in stressful times. Instead of us railing against drugs as bad for society, we should be falling back on Christianity’s oldest and basic premise, that God created.  We mustn’t jump to point number two that man fell and start our theology from there.  Drugs are, at their very core holy and the fact that man abuses is not a testament to the drug, but to the human condition.  

One basic premise of evolution tells a story about God, so let me give one more piece of advice given to me by the great philosopher, Indiana Jones.  He said in the third and in my opinion best, movie (the Last Crusade) “maybe you should try reading books [on evolution] instead of burning them!  God is everywhere EVEN in the theory of evolution and if you read up on it, God will make Himself known even in something that seems to oppose Him.

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