The Peppered Moth case presents a great opportunity to dialogue with believers in Evolution. I have been confronted with the Peppered Moth case many times in my seminars and workshops. This dialogue, taken from my book “Without 3 Miracles, Darwin’s Dead” (Publication 4/17) goes like this:
Questioner: “Mr. Liebert, teaching my biology class the textbook uses the case of the Peppered Moth in England as an example of Evolution in action. Doesn’t this example prove Evolution and, therefore, make your arguments for Creation wrong?”
Me: “Tell me exactly what the text says about this moth case.”
Questioner, reading: “’The peppered moth in England is an excellent example of Evolution in action. It shows the operation of Natural Selection in a dramatic way in a small amount of evolutionary time, less than one hundred years.’ Darwin wrote in the Origin of Species that survival of the fittest was an important part of this theory. Do you deny this proves Evolution is right and Creation wrong?”
Me: “Let me restate the case. We start with two varieties of moth, light and dark and as time progresses one kind survives better based on the coloration of the local trees. If the tree bark is light in color as the natural trees, the light ones survive. If the trees are darkened by soot from burning coal, the dark ones survive more. Is that the case?”
Ask them agree.
Me: “OK. Did anything new come out of this process, any new genes or new variation?”
Questioner: “No, this is an example of Darwin’s “survival of the fittest.” Nothing new has been added to the moth species; its population balance is just changing by Natural Selection.”
Me: “Now, let’s review the Peppered Moth case we’ve agreed to. There are two varieties of moth, light and dark. One or the other is being driven toward extinction because of changing environmental conditions based on the color of the tree trunks. So, we are losing some genetic variety as the process proceeds. If one or the other becomes extinct, the type and its genetic variety will be lost and cannot be recovered. In your case, both kinds of moths exist from the beginning so nothing new has been added but there has been a change in the balance of who survives and who gets eaten. This whole case is a downhill process, the opposite of Evolution.”
He/She starts to argue but sees the futility of their position and eventually agrees.
Me: “We both agree the evolutionary process moves from the simple to complex, molecules to man, from single-celled to complex multi-celled creatures but this process moves in the opposite direction. We are losing diversity if one color disappears and this is the opposite of Evolution. It’s Devolution. Creationists agree Natural Selection is a real process in nature but it does not increase information and in this case, it decreases the diversity of the creature. This case shows the impossibility of Evolution, not its upward progress. To make your case for Evolution you’ve got to show the appearance of new traits in the population not the disappearance of ones that already exist.”
Charlie is the author of “Always Be Ready to Give an Answer!” which develops an evangelism strategy that gets to the Gospel every time you witness. His second book ANSWERS For “The Hope That Is In You.” contains answers to more than 100 questions skeptics use to try to stump Christians. My third book, “Without 3 Miracles Darwin’s DEAD!” is currently in the final editing process and will be published later this year. http://yourchristiananswers.com
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