top of page

That's a Good Question

Exploring Faith and Fossils: A Journey Through Creation, and Evolution

November 28, 2023

Jon Delger


Stephanie Delger

JonHey everyone, welcome to That's a Good Question, a podcast of Peace Church, this place where we answer questions about the Christian faith in plain language. I'm Jon, I can serve as a pastor here at Peace Church, I also get to serve as the weekly host of this show, and you can always submit questions at And I'm here today with a very special guest who I'm excited to get to share this episode with. My guest here is one of the hosts of the Mom Guilt podcast. She also teaches in our women's ministry here at Peace Church. She's also a mother of four, a homeschool teacher, and she's my wife. My wife, Miss Stephanie Delger, is my guest here on today's show and I'm excited to have her on because she is someone who has done a lot of reading and study and thinking about the topic that we're going to talk about today. So let me read our question for today. All right, the question that came in is this, I assume you guys don't believe in evolution.

Question #1: If you don't believe in evolution, then what do you say about Neanderthals or dinosaurs?

And so Stephanie, you have read a lot of books about dinosaurs because since a young age you have wondered this question yourself. As a Christian, I read the Bible, but scientists say, you know, some different things about dinosaurs. How do dinosaurs fit into the whole timeline? And so we're going to talk about that a lot. We're also going to talk a little about Ken Ham and answers in Genesis, which is a key resource that we use. But thanks for being here. And I'm excited to talk about the question.

StephanieYeah, me too.

JonSo we're going to break it down a little bit and we're going to start by talking about that big question of evolution. So Stephanie, what do we think about evolution?

StephanieYeah, so I think it's important when talking about evolution, what do you really mean by evolution, right? So I would say evolution, there's two different types of evolution. I would say there's micro evolution and there's macro evolution. So one of those I would say I would agree with and say yes, and the other one I would say no. So first, if it's okay, we can talk about microevolution. So I would say microevolution is where there's some type or some kind of organism that is going to maybe change over time. So I was a nurse and I worked in the healthcare field. And so one of the things that I was thinking about, how do I give you an example of what this would be, was bacteria, right? So in health care, they don't like to give out antibiotics a lot for certain bacterias because the bacteria can change and actually become resistant to that medication or that antibiotic. And so I would say that's actually a great example of micro evolution. It's some type of organism that is changing or adapting to its environment to survive.

JonMm hmm. That makes sense.

StephanieYeah. So then macro evolution would be some type of living organism changing into a whole different type. And I think talking about kinds or types, I get that from Genesis. So if you read in Genesis 1, the creation account, you're seeing God created things to their kind. And as you read that, you see he created according to their kinds, according to their kinds. And so right there in the creation narrative, you're seeing there's a certain type compared to a different type. And so what I would say is microevolution is the same type of organism that's maybe just changing or adapting, whereas macroevolution is some kind changing into a different kind.

JonRight. And we have evidence of microevolution. Absolutely. We have, you know, verifiable cases of that, but we don't have evidence of verifiable cases of macroevolution, right? There's no case of that that we know of. So evolution itself is a scientific theory, right? It's one theory about it looks at data and it tries to put together that data and make sense of it. It's one theory about how we could get put together some different data of basically how are there all these different kinds of organisms on the earth and how did we get here and how did it happen over a span of time? You wanna talk about evolution as a theory a little bit?

StephanieYeah, so when talking to our kids about it, you know, there's this idea that what the scientists are doing in this, like the creation scientists, they're looking at it saying, how did all of this come to be? Well, some of them are looking at this, and they're making guesses, right? We were not there at creation. So they're taking these things and trying to make sense of it. And so what they're trying to do is sometimes they will say, well, we're not believing in God. So if you take God out of the equation, how do we then explain how everything has came to be? And so what they'll say is well, there's no God so something has to happen And so this is just a theory that they're saying oftentimes trying to pass it off as fact, right? A lot of times they're not saying this is a guess. This is our Idea that we've came up with but rather I mean we just need to be honest about that because sometimes I think they can be Kind of deceptive and how they talk about it.

JonYeah, and we're not being anti-science in saying that. We're pro-science, right? Absolutely. Christians are in favor of science as the work of looking at God's created order, looking at things in creation and studying them so that we can understand them better. In science, we make hypotheses about how the different things that we see might work together and what might happen after different experiments. So it's important that we do that hard work of science, but we're saying, looking at evolution, I think honest scientists would say, hey, we don't, this isn't a verifiable fact. This is one theory about how things may have come to be. Right? Is that fair to say?

StephanieYeah, I think that's great.

JonYeah. So, as we think about that, we're saying, okay, let's think about the biblical evidence as well as the evidence that we see in creation. Now, let's think about what is the best way to bring those together. And so, thinking about that ourselves, now, you know, neither of us are science experts, but we have done a lot of study of the Bible. And so let's come at it from the biblical side. What are some of the biblical problems with evolution? You want me to go first?

StephanieI would love you to go first.

JonSo what are some of the minor problems? Minor, not minor. So what are some of the biblical problems with evolution? So I think one of those that I think of right away is death before the fall. So the whole idea of evolution is predicated on that things have to die in order to, you know, death has to happen in order for evolution to happen.

StephanieYeah, evolution is coming, one animal is dying and turning into something else. Death has to be part of the evolution as they're trying to describe it.

JonYeah, it happens over the course of generations. Whereas in the Bible, we see that death doesn't come into play until after Genesis 3, after the fall, which is after animals and human beings have all been created. And so that just doesn't line up, I think, both with the scriptural chronology as well as with God's character. That if death happens before Genesis 3, before the fall, then something's out of place, right? The idea is that before sin enters the world, everything is perfect, everything is good, there's no sickness, there's no death, that's the state that we're actually going to be returning to at the end of all things when Jesus returns. And so death before the fall is a major problem with evolution. What else we got?

StephanieYeah, so I think of passages like I was able to teach on Romans 8 this last year in the Women's Bible Study at our church. And in Romans 8, it talks about the creation groaning together along with us and it's longing for this restoration. And so I think even in Romans, Paul is pointing back saying this was perfect and it was then broken by sin and it will be restored. And so I think even in the New Testament, you see that pattern of everything was perfect and then sin entered the world, it was fallen, right? God's good design was broken and then it will be restored and you look forward to Jesus coming back and doing that for us.

JonYeah, yeah, definitely. Another problem that comes up is just the biblical account that, you know, for evolution to work, you know, so if you look at some of the, some of the work there done by scientists, they would say that evolution, you know, has to make sense, you have to start with a large population of humans at the beginning. I think from what I've heard is there has to be about 10,000 people to sort of to start with. And so, and when we look at the Bible, it says that there's Adam and Eve, two people, two human beings. And so, we've got kind of some contradiction there that those two can't be true at the same time. So, I think for evolution to work, evolution to make sense, we'd have to say that Adam and Eve were not really the first humans like the Bible says, which is a problem. Yeah. One last one that I want to point to is, because this goes right to the very heart of the gospel, and for me this just brings up how important of an idea this is. This isn't just sort of a secondary or side issue in theology, this is a real issue of the issue of evolution. So I think about Romans 5 verse 12, let me read it and then we'll just kind of explain how it relates. It says, therefore just as sin came into the world through one man and death through sin, so death spread to all men because all sinned." Okay, so in Romans 5, it's making the case for how sin came into the world through Adam and death through sin and through Adam. And then it's going to make the case later that through Jesus comes life and righteousness. And so you've got this core problem for the gospel that if Adam wasn't a real person, and if Adam didn't sin, and if he's not the father of all mankind, and all mankind died with him, you know, that all mankind is born into sin ever since Adam, if that's not true, then we've also got the problem of, well, what does that mean for Jesus, and how can Jesus be the leader, the father of a new humanity that is freed from sin by his death on the cross and his resurrection. So this really does affect the very core of the gospel.

StephanieYeah, I think this is a great example of how sometimes we can kind of pass something off and say, oh, this doesn't really matter. But I think as you were just explaining that verse, these things in Genesis that we're talking about of how God created us, these are really important and it impacts how we view Christ and how thankful we are for our salvation from that. You know, if we don't think that Adam was a real person and that through him entered sin into the world, then we're gonna take that less seriously than that Christ came to save us from that. And I think that this is just one example of how these things really do matter. We can't just cast them off and say, oh, just forget it. Yeah, right.

JonCool. Well, let's get into some of the specific questions that were asked about dinosaurs. Rawr!

StephanieI didn't see that coming.

JonI didn't think you would.

StephanieThat was awesome.

JonAll right, so the other perspective is what has been called the old earth perspective. And so when they look at Genesis, they would look at that word day and they would see that not as a literal 24 hour time period, but as a long period of time, an undisclosed amount of time, many years during that period of time. So and a lot of that is looking at what some scientists are telling us, looking at the age of the earth, looking at things buried in the ground, carbon dating, different methods like that, fossils, and they're trying to estimate the age of the earth. And we're trying to figure out how does that work with what Genesis is telling us. So those are the kind of the two different perspectives. And that comes into play when we talk about dinosaurs. So we're talking about did dinosaurs live millions of years ago? And we have to ask the question, did the earth exist millions of years ago? So you got to ask kind of that question. You're going to come down on one of those two sides of that coin. And like we said earlier, again, I think, you know, Christians who are faithful to the Bible can disagree on this topic. But the next issue we're going to talk about is the fall. So how that comes into play is for dinosaurs to die, for dinosaurs to have cancer, as we've found evidence of, things like that, this means that sickness and death was in the world.

StephanieYeah, and I think, I mean looking at fossils, there are some that I will show our kids or even looking at preparing for this episode that you see fossils of like a fish eating another fish or like you were saying dinosaur fossils having cancer or tumors or broken bones, that's then showing that if the earth is millions and millions of years and dinosaurs existed before humans, that you then have cancer, you have broken bones, you have this death that came into play before sin entered the world, which I don't see that in scripture.

Jon Yeah, what we see in scripture is that those things didn't happen until after Genesis 3, until Adam and Eve eat the fruit, which means if dinosaurs didn't die or have cancer until Adam and Eve ate the fruit, that means that they were actually on the earth at the same time together. So to fit with the biblical storyline, I think we have to say that dinosaurs and people have to be living at the same time. So, all right, let's talk about our take on this, and we don't declare to be the experts on this topic, but we've done some good study and some good reading on this topic. Stephanie, you want to kick us off? What's our take on this? How did dinosaurs fit into the biblical storyline?

StephanieYeah, so like you were saying earlier, dinosaurs were created on day six with Adam and Eve with humans, so they coexisted. Now what I think probably makes the most sense of how come there's not dinosaurs now, I think really is the flood. So we read in the Bible that there was the global flood, that Noah and his sons and their wives were on the ark along with two of every animal. And so a majority of the dinosaurs, along with other animals, were wiped out pretty much by the flood.

JonYeah, but how come, but didn't God save each kind of animal?

StephanieYeah, so Noah was instructed or God sent two of each type of animal to the ark to save. So I would actually say there were probably dinosaurs on the ark along with all of the other animals. And for some reason, after the flood receded and they all got off for whatever reason, they became extinct at that point. But there were most likely dinosaurs, I would say, on the Ark.

JonBut wouldn't they have been too big?

StephanieYeah, so in some of the stuff, like, I immediately, when I think of dinosaurs, I like to think of the big T-Rex, like all of the toys that our boys love to play with, like the huge ones. But looking at all of the dinosaurs, it's talking about type. So it's not saying every single type of fossil that we find is on there. It'd be a kind of dinosaur. So I think that then limits a little bit as to how many dinosaurs maybe were on the ark. But also I think it also makes a lot of sense for him to not have like the big, huge, like at their biggest that they're going to be. It actually makes more sense to have some of the younger ones, especially thinking about how the animals that were on the ark are the ones that are responsible to repopulate their entire population post flood. And so it doesn't really make a lot of sense to have like grandma and grandpa dinosaur on the ark. No offense, but it does make sense to have like teenage dinosaurs on and so those younger ones are going to be smaller in size too.

JonYeah, that makes sense. So the reason that, so what is the reason that fossils look so old?

StephanieYeah, so I think with the Bible we read about again the flood and I think the flood actually makes a lot of sense to explain a lot of the fossils. So, thinking about how fossils are formed, yes, they can be formed over long periods of time, but we also see that fossils can be formed over a very short period of time under the right circumstances. And I think looking at the circumstances that you need to create a fossil, like all of that is found in the flood. And so, when you have all of these different circumstances coming together, those things actually create the perfect circumstance for fossils to be formed. And so what they're maybe saying is millions of years really under the right circumstances, specifically the flood, that's a great way that fossils, I believe, would be formed.

JonRight. And this is one of the things that I found most compelling in our trip to the Creation Museum. So, Ken Ham, Answers to Genesis, great organization. That's kind of our go-to resource on this topic. And so they make a great case for how this could have worked. And one of the, they point to some more modern examples. So Mount St. Helens erupted in 1980, and they talk about just the, everything around Mount St. Helens and kind of how if you were to grab that stuff and look at some of the trees that got buried, animals that got buried, things that would appear to be fossils, and you pull those up and you date them the way that we date dinosaurs, you would think that they were millions of years old. But actually they're only, you know, 40, 50 years old. The reason for that is because of how quickly they were buried and under what conditions, you know, the conditions of heat and cold and, you know, a volcano, just all that kind of stuff. And so, one of the other examples they use is of these World War II planes. I forget what kind of plane, but there were some planes that were on some kind of mission flying over a frozen area, and they went down, and then we found them, maybe, I forget what it was, 40, 50 years later, they were discovered, they were found, buried in the ice. And the same thing was true, using the methods that we would normally use to date things buried in ice. We would date them at being millions of years old, but we know that they were World War II planes. They're from the 1940s.

StephanieYeah, I think there's a lot of fossils that you can find that to me I would just I would want them to answer. So you find clams of fossils. Now normally when a clam dies there's that little muscle that like holds the two sides of the shell together. Well, when that dies the the muscle falls apart and it opens up. But you find a lot of clams that are fossilized in a closed position, which points to a rapid burial, like with the flood. You find fossils, there's one of a dinosaur that they found that's actually giving birth. You know, if that was millions and millions of years and it was really slowly, that would have decayed, that wouldn't have fossilized in the position of that dinosaur giving birth. So I think a lot of reasons there's fossils that make a lot more sense of like a rapid burial, which is explained by the flood.

JonRight. So again, this is us trying to be faithful Christians, but also to do good science, right? We're looking at the data and we're trying to make sense of it. Now, some look at the data and they make sense of it saying that this is millions of years old, others look at the data. And there's also a scientific reason we say, we'll look at the biblical story of the flood and what that would have done to the whole earth if there was a flood and how that would affect the sediment layers and all that kinds of stuff that we use to do dating.

StephanieI think part of the science too is you want to replicate it, right? And so when you replicate something over and over, you should be guaranteed that same result. And so if you're saying that there are these items like the planes that you were talking about where if you're going to figure out their age, and we know that it's not millions of years, and yet the same dating that you would use for dinosaurs is showing that it's millions of years. To me, that just maybe shows that there's a level of error or that you're claiming something as fact, which might not be fact.

JonRight, might be theory.

StephanieYeah, theory.

JonGood, all right, so the other part of it was this question of Neanderthals, and I think essentially they're asking the big question of, you know, so Homo sapiens is the term used to refer to what modern humans are. So how does all of that work? What do we do with these other forms of human life that have been found? And how does that all fit together?

StephanieYeah, so I think one of the things you were saying earlier is really important that they're finding these things and they weren't there at the time of when like the Neanderthals were there. We're taking something old and we're making guesses as to how it came to be. Now, some of the things that we found with Neanderthals is that they were able to have babies with what they would call current humans. And in the Bible, it talks about each kind being with its kind. Well, if something is mating with a human and having a child, that's a human, right? And humans are made in God's image. And so I would say just kind of on a really simple thing is Neanderthals were humans that maybe have some genetic differences than what maybe you and I do here today. But because specifically because they were able to have babies with what they would call modern humans, they were a human.

Jonconversation is how do we explain Neanderthals or this bigger category of different types of humans, human remains, human fossils that are found that are older and that look different from each other. You know I've heard different names given to them Homo sapien, Homo erectus, different you know should I say that differently? Yeah I said it last night. I said different Homos. Okay, I'm going to say it again. I'm going to say it. All right, so one other question. So the other part of the listener question was about Neanderthals, or I think they're asking the question about, you know, there's different human remains, fossils that have been found and they look different from each other. How do we explain that? You know, some have been given the label of Homo sapiens, some of them given the label of Homo erectus, other types. Just how do we explain all those differences in these human remains that are older?

StephanieYeah, so I think it's important. Some people will say that they're not human, that they maybe are like an in-between. But I would say that, especially with some of the scientific journals that I have read is that they know that these Neanderthals were bred or had children with modern day human genes. And so I think that right there, like Neanderthals are human. So I just want to kind of come out clear and say that because some people will disagree on that. And so again, looking to the Bible, you see at the Tower of Babel, what happens there. So these people are building a tower, God then comes down and he separates the people and gives them different languages. And so there's all of this genetic code that is then spread out in small people groups, right? Because you're not going to choose to bring somebody with you if you're speaking a different language. I think it makes a lot of sense that some of the genetics are going to then go and be formed in specific ways based on who they're with, which is a small population. And so the Neanderthals, I think, would be best explained as a people group that broke off of the Tower of Babel that had a similar language that then had a certain set of genetics that are gonna breed, and as they had children, that genetic code is passed on. And so you're going to then have maybe different characteristics, like the defined bridge row, or like a thicker body or skeletal structure. And I think that would just be a genetic difference, but still within like the human race.

JonSure. So you're saying, yeah, if they just split off in a different group. So if you've got a small group of people, a few characteristics, a few traits could become dominant quickly and take over a group of people. And maybe that's the differences between these different remains that we found. I remember you telling me, what is the percentage of DNA difference between the different remains that we found?

StephanieYeah, so I think researchers were saying that the Neanderthal DNA is 99.7% identical to modern human DNA. So this is a really small difference.

JonRight, so it makes sense to say that it's explained not by being a lesser evolved version of human beings, but to say that it's actually that they're humans, they just they went their different ways after Babel and different traits became dominant or something like that. And they're just different forms of human beings.

StephanieAnd I think looking at that, too, it's a great way that we can see God is just this amazing creator that within Adam and Eve, he had this vast genetic code that will then go on to repopulate these people will go and repopulate the world. And so you're gonna see differences. And I think just seeing even how the defined bridge route, the bridge brow, bridge?

JonI don't think that's it.


JonBrow line.

StephanieBrow line, defined brow line. Okay. So I think even seeing how these genetic differences play out, I think just shows us how great God was when he created Adam and Eve, that in Adam and Eve, he gave all of this genetic code that could then go and create different characteristics and different people groups like we see with this to me. I just think I look at this. I'm like wow God you are just so good and you had everything in under your plan that this is what you decided to do before you even made Adam and Eve. I love seeing the differences because I think it just points to how great God our creator is.

JonYeah, yeah, amen. So great, well hey, we're about out of time here, but thanks Stephanie for talking about evolution and dinosaurs and Neanderthals. It's been awesome to get to talk. You wanna share a little bit more about Mom Guilt, the podcast that you lead?

StephanieYeah, so the Mom Guilt podcast is something that my friend and I started, because we realized as moms, we have mom guilt. Now talking with you and with our husbands, we've realized dad guilt isn't really a thing, but mom guilt is. And so, you know, how do you, how do you figure out what to do when you are struggling and you feel guilty about something? Well, I would say what we do in that podcast is to compare it to the Bible. How does God view this? And so we can then kind of become unburdened by that mom guilt that we feel, that we feel specifically through the gospel. And so that's the goal of our podcast.

JonAwesome. Awesome. I would highly recommend it. Not just because you're my wife, but because I think it's great stuff. Awesome. Well, hey, thanks everybody for listening. Well, hey, thanks everybody for listening. Hope you have an awesome week.

bottom of page