Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Survival of the Unfittest

Darwin, Dawkins and Co advocate the principle of survival of the fittest. Whether or not we subscribe to this theory of natural selection, we must agree that it completely goes against the grain of human nature.

We do everything we can to promote the opposite effect - which here I call survival of the unfittest. Why else is there such outrage over species that are almost extinct? Only this week, there are reports of genome reconstruction for the woolly mammoth, long consigned to bio-history by natural selection.

Survival of the unfittest is most fiercely defended with regard to our fellow human beings. Equal opportunities effectively means positive discrimination in favour of the disadvantaged. How un-Darwinian this is! We instinctively seem to prefer Baron de Coubertin's "don't worry about winning, just take part" mentality that sees its ultimate fulfilment in the Paralympic Games.

I suggest that this compassionate equal-rights-for-all attitude springs from our "image-of-God" legacy. The Biblical creation record notes that God made man "in His image, after His likeness". Although sinful, miserable humanity little resembles the Divine Character, our equal opportunities movement is still "some feeble, pale reflection / of that pure love of Thine." [hymn]

Only God lifts beggars from rubbish tips and sets them among princes [1Sam2.8]. This is divine grace in action. He pays the price (in the sin-atoning death of Jesus Christ) to reconcile us to Himself. The price is paid for all, so the offer is available to all; even though none of us deserves it.