I was just finishing up my lunch on my favorite park bench. While eating my banana, a strange looking fella, sunken eyes with heavy dark eyebrows and a protruding jaw, sat down next to me. He was mumbling to himself, then he blurted out:
“Someone told me today that I descended from an ape!”
I looked at the man and I hoped he was harmless.
“I’m very upset,” he continued.
“Relax now, have you heard of evolution?” I said.
“Things change?” he stammered.
“Well, sort of.”
“How terrible to be descended from monkeys!”
“Hold on now, evolution means changes in living things through the process of adapting to their environment to allow them to survive.”
My bench mate looked confused.
“I always thought we came from Adam and Eve.”
I smiled and continued:
“That’s the Bible story, that’s not science.”
“Evolution explains that living things share common ancestors and over time they adapt to survive and this gives rise to new species.”
The man looked sad.
“In other words, you’re telling me there’s no God!”
“What you believe in is your choice, but it might be better for you to understand science, to treat the Bible as a book of rules to live by, a philosophical book, not a text book of science.”
“Now, I am confused.”
“Listen, evolution theory states that one type of organism could change into another.”
“I thought Adam came from the dust of the ground.”
“That’s religion not science. Evolution is explaining the natural world through natural cause and effect. Science can say nothing about the supernatural.”
“So, I did come from an ape!”
“Well, evolution states we had a common ancestor, an ape-like creature, then the species split into apes, monkeys and humans.”
“I wish I could understand this evolution thing.”
“I’ll tell you what, read two books, side by side, The Bible and Darwin’s “Origin of Species” and you will see the differences.”
In two weeks he showed up on my bench again.
“Well, are you any clearer on evolution now?”
He smiled and said:
“Yes, I am, Adam and Eve were apes!”