Recent discoveries of more than 15 complete fossilised skeletons of a newly defined early human designated Homo naledi are yet to be dated, but scientists say their primitive features, small brains and small statures mean they are probably at least 2 million years old.

National Geographic provides a very detailed coverage of the naledi find.

I would be particularly interested in how Young Earth Creationists explain early human species such as Homo naledi. I am not just looking for an explanation of their apparent age, because on one view, these near-human fossils should not even exist.

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    The same way they always have: answersingenesis.org/missing-links and answersingenesis.org/creation
    – Steve
    Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 4:54
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    @Steve - Can you turn that into a cohesive answer? This question is nothing new,it's the same tired-old question of how to YEC adherents understand X timeline believed by non YEC adherents, just re-prhased with "modern discoveries". It should be simple to address this. Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 4:57
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    @Steve answersingenesis.org/missing-links only states that there is no "missing link" and then goes on, briefly, to mention other fossils. answersingenesis.org/creation does not even discuss fossils. So neither site provides a satisfactory explanation even of the of ancient fossils, particularly hominid fossils. If there is a cohesive YEC story to tell, I think it would be useful to have an answer to this "tired old question" here. Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 5:32
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    @DickHarfield if you're looking for a "satisfactory answer", I'd like to remind you that we're not here to convince you.. We're solely focused on what various groups believe/teach, not whether it's personally convincing to you. Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 5:35
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    @DickHarfield You did not mention "fossils" in your question; your question was very broad, so my answer was broad. If you wanted to address something very specific, please make your question more specific. It really is nothing new as it stands. One addresses missing links and the other the millions of years time span.
    – Steve
    Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 5:36

2 Answers 2


Here's what Ken Ham had to say regarding the news of this discovery:

No scientist witnessed the origin of man, and evolutionary scientists only believe there were intermediate evolutionary links between an ape-like ancestor and man because they have disregarded God’s Word and substituted their own fallible opinions in its place


The only way to find an ape-man—or a “bridge” between apes and humans—is to misinterpret fossils of either an ape or a human as something in between.

Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell of Answers in Genesis provides a more thorough review and in her assessment claiming these bones are human is a stretch.

In general most Young Earth Creationists would recognize that claims such as this are based on the presuppositions and biases of the person making the claim. In other words the scientist(s) in question assume that Evolutionary Theory is true and interpret the facts to fit that framework. Other scientists would interpret the same facts based on the assumption that the Bible is true and reach a completely different conclusion.

  • Thank you for this answer and informative links. I notice that Mitchell describes australopithecines as apes, so her conclusion of naledi as an ape fits into this. Although she mentions foot and themb structures, she does not mention the scientific conclusion that naledi walked upright as only humans do, or that its thumbs were opposable in the human fashion. Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 21:54
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    It is lovely to see evolution and theory of genes used freely whenever it can be used to explain biblical stuff, but refuted when it does not support it, see e.g. the answer to christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/43558/… ... Commented Sep 14, 2015 at 13:08
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    @PerAlexandersson My question was only seeking an explanation of the creationist position, not expecting them to offer proof. I felt the answer gives this explanation quite lucidly, which is why I accepted it. On the other hand I don't accept the explanation as proof, and note that Dr Mitchell, as a GP (medical practitioner) is not qualified to establish the taxonomy of Australopithecenes or Homo naledi. Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 7:30

I am not sure why you mean this is a problem for young earth creationists. Old earth creationist have a much bigger problem to explain. God created Adam and Eve so that they would tend the garden. Also Genesis 4:2 shows that agriculture (tilling the ground, i.e. Cain, and keeping sheep, i.e. Abel) were from the beginning. Furthermore the story of creation shows that domesticated animals, cattle were created on Day 5 and man on Day 6. Since scientists unanimously agree that agriculture appeared around 9000 BC, so must have man according to the biblical record. Since Adam and Eve, Cain and Able, lived in a society where agriculture was practiced. They offered sacrifices from their livestock and in the case of Cain the harvest of the land. Young earth creationists, clearly point out that God did not create savages that were unable to worship him or farm the land, on the contrary he created man as he is today as far as the ability to keep cattle and harvest crops. With regard to any anthropologist or evolutionist that points to a fossil of a savage that lived 2 million years ago, the young earth creationist can do nothing but laugh at the foolishness of the hypothesis. The accuracy of the entirety of the fossil record, and the radiometric aging method has to be rejected simply because it is not in harmony with scripture. Let's face, all these anthropologists and evolutionary biologists are radical atheists that have an agenda, these are not true scientists but atheists disguised as scientists. WE as christians walk by faith and not by sight, one has to wonder why scientists at the time of Isaac Newton overwhelmingly thought that the earth was a few thousand years old and looked the same way as it looks now, pretty much. Even if it was possible through natural evolutionary processes to create species or through sedementation to create rocks over millions of years, it is just not the way that God did. Just because man makes wine from grapes, does not mean that God does it that way, Christ certainly turned water into wine at Cana. God does not use natural processes to make wine nor did he use them to make rocks over millions of years as the geologists teach. God speaks creation into existence. Science and the bible cannot be reconciled because the former looks at natural processes and the latter at super natural ways of creation.

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    Welcome to the site, Bill. In case you are not aware, answers are required to actually answer the Q (in this case, about discoveries of human fossils called Homo naledi). You have virtually ignored the Q and given your views on other matters. Those would have been better posted in the 'comments' box. If you can edit your answer to focus on human fossils, that would be helpful.
    – Anne
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 12:31
  • Hi, Bill. Please take the tour. Also, please be advised that "wall of text" is not an appropriate format for a response. Please break that up into standard organization. Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 22:13

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