Many people find it easier to believe that all life including all humans alive today evolved from so called simple single celled organisms such as the bacteria growing on the petri dishes here, rather than the possibility that all humans originated from a first couple as portrayed in the Bible. This would seem rather illogical and inconsistent, because one is making the assumption that the limited genetic code in bacteria is able to give rise to all species of plant and animal that ever lived on the planet, but the much more complex genetic code of a human couple is not able to give rise to diverse characteristics in the human race. So, if we take the Bible story to be true, could so many races originate from one couple?
Dogs from wolves
Make a man challenge
Origin of the races
Dogs from wolves - According to a recent article New Scientist (30th November 2002), all dogs descended from five or fewer female grey wolves that lived 15, 000 years ago. Does such a finding support evolution or belief in creation or intelligent design?
This (if a genuine finding) is a wonderful example of within species (micro) evolution. Such a finding could be seen as fitting into a Biblical model of God creating "kinds" of animals, which then in turn gave rise to diverse offspring. Could such a finding also support the ability of a single human couple to give rise to diverse races of humans? See Mitochondrial Eve below. (back to top).
Mitochondrial Eve - Part of the genetic information contained in a living cell is know as the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and this is always inherited from the mothers side (Back, P, 2003). Point (single nucleotide) mutations in mitochondrial DNA are generally harmless (unlike many in normal DNA). A wide ranging study of mtDNA in races from all parts of the World has shown that all presently living human beings appear to have sprung from one female ancestor, who has become known as "Mitochrondial Eve" or "African Eve" (Back, P, 2003). Evolutionists have referred to this as a population "bottleneck". This suggests that scientists have no problems with all of the races originating from one couple, so in principle this could fit a creationist model as well as an evolutionary one.
There have been attempts to date the time of "Mitochondrial Eve" based on an assumption of the mutations per year in a population. E.g. it is believed that humans and apes shared a common ancestry x years ago and if the number of differences between ape and human mtDNA is y then the substitution rate per year is y/x (Back, P, 2003). Using this type of analysis "Mitochondrial Eve" is thought to have lived from as low as 70,000 to as high as 800,000 years ago, although estimates are generally from about 200,000 to 250,000 years ago (Back, P, 2003). However, recent studies looking at the mutation rates of mtDNA on living human populations has come up with some very different results - indicating mutation rates up to 20 times higher than those which the evolutionists ascertain (Gibbons, A., 1998). Using the new clock that takes into account the faster mutation rate of mtDNA in humans, "Mitochondrial Eve" could be a mere 6,000 years old (Gibbons, A., 1998). So it would seem that science does not discredit the idea of all of the races originating from one couple, the only contentious issue is the time scale. (back to top).
Skin colour - With regards to skin colour, we all have similar skin, but the colour of our skin depends on the amount of melanin in the skin. Black people have lots of melanin in their skin and white people only a little. If two people with brown skin both from mixed black and white parentage have children, the children can be any of thirteen different colours, ranging from black to white (Mackay, 2000). Thus in one generation one could have a full spectrum, or nearly so, of skin colours. One can imagine that in several generations, if people tended to choose partners of similar skin colour and then related groups migrated to different parts of the world, one could have the start of different races. Dietary and climatic differences could help contribute to further differences within groups (see page on Adaptation and mutation). (back to top).
Origin of the races - John Mackay in his video "History of man" (see videos page for link) suggested that the Biblical story of the Tower of Babel (The Bible, Genesis chapter 11) is the time and place where not only different languages originated, but also where "tribal" groups with similar languages migrated to different part of the world. If this story is true and if different languages were given to different family or tribal groups with similar colouring and features, then could this have been the origin of the different races we know today?
The above may seem difficult to believe but do black people turn white after several generations in a less sunny climate? Do white people turn black after several generations in a sunny climate? The theory of Evolution would teach us that skin colour arose in response to the environmental conditions in different part of the world. (back to top).
Make a man challenge - If you think Science has all the answers, then take the "Make a man" challenge. (back to top).
Darwin's Black box. The Biochemical challenge to Evolution, by M. J. Behe.
Darwin's Leap of Faith, by John Ankerberg and John Weldon.
The Collapse of Evolution, by Huse
The origin of the races
History of man
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