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Discovery Magazine 7/1/2003

Similar Things Aren’t Always Related

by  Bert Thompson, Ph.D.

Have you ever noticed how certain creatures, or features of creatures, seem to be alike? The wing of a bat, the forefoot of a turtle, the forefoot of a frog, and the arm of a man all have the same general structure. The forefoot of the dog, the flipper of a whale, and the hand of a man contain basically the same bones and muscles. The horse and the mouse both have muscles to move their ears; man has a similar set, though somewhat less developed. Humans have elbows, just like apes. And apes have elbows just like bats.

“So what?,” you ask. “Why are similarities important?” They may not be important to you, but they are important to evolutionists, who believe that we can trace our ancestry back to a single cell billions of years ago. That cell supposedly evolved into fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals, and eventually humans. If that were true, then there ought to be basic similarities among members of those groups, since they shared common ancestors.

Are there similarities among living things? Yes. But does the fact that things are similar mean that they evolvedfrom common ancestors? No. There is a better explanation.

If God knew that animals and humans were going to live on the same Earth, drink the same water, and eat the same types of foods, doesn’t it make sense that He would create them with similarities? Architects use that principle to design buildings. If you visit a hospital, an apartment complex, and a church building, you see that they all contain walls, floors, running water, electricity, etc. Does that mean that all the lumber came from the same forest, or that all the steel came from the same steel mill? No. It means that the architect used features over and over because they worked well. That’s what God did. He made apes, humans, and bats with elbows, because elbows work well in a variety of creatures. He made the wing of a bat, the forefoot of a turtle, the forefoot of a frog, and the arm of a man all with the same general structure, because they serve a similar purpose.

God knew it was smart to use the same idea more than once, just like an architect today does. Remember when you see things in nature that are similar, that doesn’t mean they “evolved” from a common ancestor. Instead, it means they had a common Designer.



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