But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy.
– James 3:17
James D. Watson, the co-discoverer of DNA and a Nobel Prize winner, was an avowed secular humanist and evolutionist.
In 2007, he ignited a public firestorm for a comment he made to the London Sunday Times. During an interview to kick off a book tour, he said he was “gloomy about the prospect of Africa,” because testing had suggested African intelligence to be inferior to European intelligence.
This was just one of the scandalously racist comments made by the scientists. His words brought public opinion howling down upon his head and a brilliant career crashing at his feet. His apology fell upon deaf ears, and he retired from the public eye after canceling his book tour. He was soon relieved of his job as chancellor at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.
The debacle was schizophrenic for a society generally accepting of the evolutionary model of creation.
As an evolutionist, Watson was only taking evolution to its natural conclusion. If life came into being through a series of random actions over the course of eons, then species should exhibit an unorganized collage of form and function.
If intelligence is simply a by-product of cell mutations, certain groups of cells could arguably have evolved into higher functioning beings than others, even within species, thus creating classes of Homo sapiens. This is the social Darwinism upon which the Nazis based their delusions of grandeur and systematically destroyed those of supposedly inferior evolution: Asians, Slavs, Jews, Africans, Gypsies, the disabled, homosexuals, the homeless, alcoholics, Christians.
In contrast, the concept of the equality of mankind is rooted in the belief we are all created in the image of God and equal in His sight. This ideal elevates humanity from an animal existence and opens a world of opportunity for people of all nations and abilities.
The apostle Paul warned in 2 Timothy 3:7 of those who are “…always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” Proverbs reminds us, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7) and “The LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.” (Proverbs 2:6)
Wisdom doesn’t begin in the head but in the heart. Unless we acknowledge our Creator, we can spend a lifetime learning, and yet never understand who we are.
Know that the LORD Himself is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves.
– Psalm 100:3
Photo courtesy Erik Thorson