We read in Genesis that the world was created in seven days.

This article states:

Contrary to claims by creationists, macro and microevolution describe fundamentally identical processes on different time scales.

[The assumption being that more than seven days are required for the changes to bring about all the living beings we see today.]

My question is is it Christian Doctrine to say that macroevolution is not the same as microevolution?

  • There are probably just as many ideas about this as there are people in the World. None of which can be proved. If such things were provable Christianity would not be faith based, since there would be indisputable proof one way or the other. But if that were true where would our free will be?
    – BYE
    Jan 17 '14 at 14:01
  • There is no one Christian doctrine in this. More conservative / YEC churches will say yes; more liberal churches will say no. It really is that simple - there is no one Christian doctrine on matters of Creation. Jan 17 '14 at 16:59
  • Is it possible for you to show an official Christian doctrine that mentions the topic. Jan 17 '14 at 17:18
  • I should point out, for those interested, there will be live streaming of a debate on the topic of Creationism and Evolution by two household names in their respective fields: Bill Nye and Ken Ham, on Feburary 4th, 2014. Details: christiantoday.com/article/… Jan 18 '14 at 2:42

Doctrine does not make claims about the definitions that biologists (or others) use.

If someone wanted to assert that the earth is billions of years old, then someone's doctrine may contradict that assertion, but it is not a doctrinal assertion to argue about what is meant by macro- or microevolution.

If someone has an issue with macroevolution (e.g. because its logical implications contradict their doctrine), it is more likely that they claim that there isn't much in the way of proof that macroevolution has actually happened and that it is very, very improbable. Microevolution has been observed, whereas macroevolution is a theory imposed upon historical science.

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    If a specie can evolve in a small amount of time, why is it impossible to evolve given more time?
    – FFCoder
    Jan 17 '14 at 6:34
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    @FFCoder I didn't say that it was impossible, only that it hasn't been adequately demonstrated to have happened. The idea of macroevolution is an extrapolation of the principle on which microevolution works.
    – mojo
    Jan 17 '14 at 14:34
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    @FFCoder Comparative mol. seq. and anatomy are stories that fit (some of) the facts, not actual evidence that prove macroevolution actually happened. The basic problem with historical science (e.g. macroevolution) is that those theories cannot be verified like the ones posited by observational science (e.g. microevolution). It's a whole different kind of "science," where repeatability and verifiability are not possible. The best anyone can do is to construct a story that fits the (known) facts.
    – mojo
    Jan 21 '14 at 13:57
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    @FFCoder The scientific method requires that a phenomenon must be repeatable and verifiable in order for something to be known. Historical science does not satisfy this requirement. Historical science (and police detectivework) must construct a story that fits the facts, but this is not the science. The science used in historical science is testing explanations of physical principles that are used in the constructed story. At best, historical science can do little more than provide some proof that elements of a given story are possible or not.
    – mojo
    Jan 22 '14 at 4:43
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    The evidence at a crime scene will convict the murderer if there is no other reasonable conclusion to draw. In America, the prosecution is supposed to establish "beyond a reasonable doubt" that the defendant is guilty because no other story is possible. There are plenty of reasonable doubts about macroevolution (not that one has to agree with them, but they are reasonable).
    – mojo
    Jan 22 '14 at 4:46

Micro and macroevolution are non-ideal terms because they indicate that the issue is the size of changes, whereas the real issue is the type of changes.

Adaptation (and natural selection) are undeniable, but they consist of changes that shuffle and modify genetic information that is already in existence.

By contrast 'macroevolution' involves adding new functionality to a genome. Biblical Creationists assert that natural processes cannot do that as increasing information requires an intelligence, namely God. It's more philosophical than doctrinal, but yes, these Christians do say they are very different.

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    congrats on 2k rep & additional kudos for being so quick to use it for your first edit approval! Jun 30 '14 at 8:15
  • @bruisedreed I've been waiting a long while!
    – curiousdannii
    Jun 30 '14 at 8:16
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    lol, when I saw you were close after an upvote I decided to see if you had an answer that was worthy of getting you there :) Jun 30 '14 at 8:19

There is a relatively large and active community engaged in reconciling the current claims of mainstream biological science with what is known as "Young Earth Creationism." Young Earth Creationists believe that God's creation of the earth took seven literal twenty-four-hour days, and that it took place roughly 6,000 years ago.

It is common among that community to endorse the reality of microevolution, which is biological evolution that creates relatively minor changes over brief spans of time, while rejecting macroevolution, which is evolution capable of creating new species, and which requires spans of time longer than 6,000 years. This, of course, requires distinguishing between micro- and macroevolution as two separate things, one true, one false.

For many atheist biologists, their chief point of contact with the Christian community is with YEC scientists, so they understandably take YEC claims as central to Christian doctrine. However, there are many Christians who are not Young Earth Creationists.

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