Explaining Instinct

Creation Evidence

Every reputable scientist knows that Lamarck’s theory of inherited characteristics was repudiated long ago.

How Did the Giraffe Grow a Long Neck?

He had conjectured that acquired characteristics were passed on to the offspring. Thus, to explain how a giraffe got a long neck, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829)  theorized that, as leaves were eaten from the trees, they were harder to reach and the giraffe stretched its neck a small amount to get his leaf salad lunch.  He passed on his slightly longer neck to his offspring and this went on until we have the animal as it is today. His ideas were dismissed even during his lifetime. Today we know that a characteristic acquired during life does not affect the genes.

A woman who lost an arm in an accident will not give birth to a one-armed child. Only what affects the genes is inherited. Genes may be affected during a lifetime, for example by radiation, but if the change is inherited, it almost always is detrimental to the next generation. So, offspring cannot inherit what parents do. But can offspring inherit what parents learn? We wish it were true but, for better or worse, we humans all start with a clean slate.

How Do Animals Use Instinct?

This leads to the baffling question of how animal offspring do inherit survival needed information, that is, information that is not taught by a parent but is needed to stay alive. Examples are legion. The Pacific Golden Plover bird lives in eastern Siberia and Alaska. In the fall, the bird flies non-stop to the tiny islands of Hawaii, 2000 miles over the ocean. A slight deviation off the southern route and the birds would die before reaching land. Yet they hit it every time. Since the summers are so short, the young are not old enough to take the trip when the parents leave. But two months later they take off and meet mom and dad when they arrive. How do they know where to go and how to get there?

The Magnolia Warbler, even when separated from its parents before hatching, still has the ability to navigate by the stars and to know when it is time to fly south based solely on star patterns.

The opossum is born 12 days after conception and is the size of a grain of rice. It then crawls to the mother’s pouch and attaches to one of her 13 nipples. If it is too late (no nipples left), it will perish. How is this knowledge passed on to each generation

What Is the Better Explanation?

Evolutionists are forced to admit that in the distant past learned information became programmed into an animal’s genes. This sounds suspiciously Lamarckian, doesn’t it? Creationists have a better explanation. God put the information in the genes of animals when He made them. It is just another example of His wisdom and power.

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