Did Darwin teach racism?


By BibleAsk Team

Darwin and Racism

Darwin based the theory of evolution on the concept that all humans evolved from ape-like creatures, and, since some groups of humans supposedly are less ape-like than others, some humans are more highly evolved and thus superior.

In Darwin’s 1859 book The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection—or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, he pointed that there are Favored races. Darwin wrote in page 395 that some races, or “species of men,” were favored or more highly evolved than others.

And in his second book The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex, published in 1871, he added more on this concept. In the first chapter, he wrote: “He who wishes to decide whether man is the modified descendant of some pre-existing form, would probably first enquire whether man varies, however slightly, in bodily structure and in mental faculties; and if so, whether the variations are transmitted to his offspring in accordance with the laws which prevail with the lower animals” (1871, p. 395).

And he added, in the chapter titled “On the Affinities and Genealogy of Man” the following, “At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla “(p. 521).

Darwin clearly taught that the more “civilized races” (e.g., Caucasian) would one day exterminate the more savage races, which he considered to be less evolved (and thus more ape-like) than Caucasians. Darwin was convinced that “the negro” and “Australian” are like sub-species, somewhere between Caucasians and apes.

The Bible teaches exactly the opposite. It teaches that there is just one human race—an intelligent people that God created “in His image” in the beginning (Genesis 1-2), both “male and female” (Genesis 1:27,28). And that all people descended from Adam and Eve, the first couple (1 Corinthians 15:45; Genesis 3:20), and later Noah, through whom the Earth was repopulated after the Flood (Genesis 6-10). Therefore, people have equal value as human beings (Romans 10:12). And all men stand before God as sinners (Romans 3:10,23) in need of a Savior (John 8:24; Mark 16:15-16).

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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