Used by God even though world was created as immortal world

An interesting aspect of the creation of physical life is whether or not evolution was used. Almost all scientists say “yes”. Latter-day Saints, though, are divided about that question. Let’s look at the creation as depicted in the Bible.

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. (Genesis 1:27)

Notice that verse doesn’t tell *how* God created man, only that He created him. A problem that many LDS have is that because they believe the creation of the earth happened before death entered the world, evolution could not have been used by God as a tool in that creation, since evolution requires death. They thus conclude that evolution is a false concept and is not part of God’s plan. I also believe that the creation of the earth, including the Garden of Eden episode, happened before death existed, because my interpretation of the scriptures tells me that is so, and the concept of the Fall of Adam makes no sense without death entering the world after Adam and Eve partook of the fruit. But, at this point I depart from many LDS because I believe in evolution. So, how do I solve this paradox of an immortal creation and evolution? By not making the mistake that many LDS make in placing evolution at the wrong point in the time-line of creation.

Here is the sequence of events according to my understanding of the scriptures.

  • God created a physical world that had no death. This world included the Garden of Eden.
  • Adam and Eve were placed in the garden and were thus immortal.
  • Adam and Eve partook of the fruit, and the world became mortal, i.e. the Fall of Adam occurred, a fall from immortality to mortality.

So, how could evolution play a part in this? Obviously, not at the beginning when God created the physical but immortal world. Let’s look at that sequence again. When did the earth become mortal? After Adam and Eve partook of the fruit. So, when could God have used evolution as a tool? After Adam and Eve partook of the fruit. From that viewpoint, based on my speculation about evolution, here is a new sequence of events.

  • God created a physical world that had no death. This world included the Garden of Eden.
  • Adam and Eve were placed in the garden and were thus immortal.
  • Adam and Eve partook of the fruit, and the immortal world was replaced by a mortal world, i.e. the Fall of Adam occurred, a fall from immortality to mortality.
  • The process of the world becoming mortal was not instantaneous. It took millions of years in earth time for God to create the mortal world via the natural laws that govern the mortal world, and God used evolution as one of his tools in creating the mortal world.

Does this mean that Adam and Eve had to wait millions of years for the mortal earth and their mortal bodies to be created? Not if “immortal earth” time was different than “mortal earth” time. The millions of years in mortal time could have been but a few minutes or so in immortal time.

This is the view I have of the creation, and it allows me to accept science and evolution and my religion as one unified whole. This view of the creation is compatible with the scriptures since the scriptures don’t say *how* the change from an immortal world to a mortal world occurred. A detailed explanation of this view is given in Reconciliation of the Fall of Adam and Evolution.

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