How is Evolutionary Creation different from Evolutionism, Intelligent Design, and Creationism?

Before You Read ...

Dear reader,

A new poll shows that for young adults in particular, belief in God is plummeting. From research, we know a primary driver behind a loss of faith among young people is the church’s rejection of science. To put it bluntly: Young people aren’t leaving the faith because of science, they’re leaving because they’ve been told to choose between science and God. That’s why BioLogos exists—to show that science and faith can work hand-in-hand. And although the challenge is clearly daunting, our work is having an impact!

As a nonprofit, we rely on the generosity of grassroots donors like you to reach those who are being told, “It’s God or evolution!” or “It’s God or vaccines!” or “It’s God or science!” In this urgent moment, we need your help to continue to produce resources such as this.

Give Now

At BioLogos, we present the Evolutionary Creation (EC) viewpoint on origins. Like all Christians, we fully affirm that God is the creator of all life—including human beings in his image. We fully affirm that the Bible is the inspired and authoritative word of God. We also accept the science of evolution as the best description for how God brought about the diversity of life on earth.

But while we accept the scientific evidence for evolution, BioLogos emphatically rejects Evolutionism, the atheistic worldview that so often accompanies the acceptance of biological evolution in public discussion. Evolutionism is a kind of scientism, which holds that all of reality can in principle be explained by science. In contrast, BioLogos believes that science is limited to explaining the natural world, and that supernatural events like miracles are part of reality too.

The Earth

According to Young Earth Creationism (YEC), a faithful reading of Scripture commits Christians to accepting that the earth is young, between 6,000 and 10,000 years old. YEC claims that Scripture is not compatible with the idea that humans share common ancestry with other life forms on earth, and most YEC proponents feel that evolution is a direct threat to Christianity.

According to Old Earth Creationism (OEC), the scientific evidence for the great age of the earth (4.6 billion years) and universe (13.7 billion years) is strong. This view typically maintains that the days of creation in Genesis 1 each refer to long periods of time. OEC does not accept the common ancestry of all life forms, often opting instead for a theory of progressive creation in which God miraculously created new species at key moments in the history of life.

We at BioLogos maintain that the scientific evidence from many branches of modern science would make little sense apart from common ancestry and evolution. We also believe that the cultural and theological contexts in which Scripture was written are key for determining the best interpretation of the creation accounts.

In contrast to EC, YEC, and OEC, Intelligent Design (ID) does not explicitly align itself with Christianity. It claims that the existence of an intelligent cause of the universe and of the development of life is a testable scientific hypothesis. ID arguments often point to parts of scientific theories where there is no consensus and claim that the best solution is to appeal to the direct action of an intelligent designer. At BioLogos, we believe that our intelligent God designed the universe, but we do not see scientific or biblical reasons to give up on pursuing natural explanations for how God governs natural phenomena. We believe that scientific explanations complement a robust theological understanding of God’s role as designer, creator, and sustainer of the universe.

While Christians differ on their views of the age of the earth and evolution, we all agree on the essentials of the faith: that all people have sinned and that salvation comes only through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We agree that the God of our salvation is the same God we see in the wonders of his creation. Whether we ponder the intricacy of DNA, the beauty of a dolphin, or the vastness of the Milky Way, we can lift our hearts together in praise to the divine Artist who made it all.


Last updated on August 02, 2022