Myths of Evolution

Myths as used here are:

1. Tentative suppositions or theories that have been factually disproved and are long after still being promoted as supporting certain beliefs.

2. False or misleading statements made in support of a theory.

3. Facts that are said to support a theory that may equally or better support one or more known opposing theories.

4. Supposed facts in support of a theory that are fraudulent. 




Myth:   Myths of Evolution   Fact: Why this is not correct




Myth   Evolution has been proved as a fact.


This statement is only partially true and very misleading.  Within species, descent with modification is an established fact that is observable.  "At the level of kingdoms, phyla, and classes, descent with modification from common ancestors is obviously not an observed fact.  To judge from the fossil and molecular evidence, it’s not even a well supported theory." [1] 


Fact   “There is no evidence that life developed, or even could have developed, by a purely natural process.” [2]





Myth   Advances in biology are continually confirming the traditional evolutionary theory.


Fact   Findings of comparative biology contradict the traditional evolutionary theory. [3]





Myth   Small adaptive changes within a class/species/subspecies such as fruit flies prove that all animals and plants evolved from lower forms.


Fact  1. “The degree of change that can be experimentally induced in a wide variety of organisms, from bacteria to mammals, even under the most intensive selection pressures, is always limited by a distinct barrier beyond which further change is impossible…” [4]


Fact  2. Normal variations in a kind are governed by strict Mendelian laws of inheritance.  Normal variations occur within the limits specified in the DNA for that kind.  No vertical evolutionary changes are made but horizontal changes only. [5]


Fact  3. “(S)elective change is limited by the inherent variability in the gene pool.  After a number of generations the capacity for variation runs out.” [6]





Myth Bacterial resistance to antibiotics  proves evolution.


Facts  Mutations responsible for resistance:


1. Were present in the bacterial population before the antibiotics were discovered.


2.  May decrease the organism’s vitality.


3. Cause no change in species but only in a variety of the species that differs from normal in its trait of resistance to the antibiotics. Change is horizontal within the species not vertical evolution. [7]





Myth   Archeopteryx said to be the missing link between dinosaurs and birds.  Sited by Darwin as proof of his theory.  Had wings, feathers, claws on wings, long lizard-like tail, and teeth unlike modern birds. [8]


Fact  1.  Too many differences between dinosaurs and Archaeopteryx for the latter to be descendant of the former including Archaeopteryx large braincase “for the increased motor control and sensory input that were required for flight,” its bird frame as distinct from the “lizard-like pelvis” of theropods, its robust wishbone required of strong fliers to protect “the bird‘s delicate internal air sacs,” and its “fully formed wings with fused clavicles” compared to “clavicle-free theropod forelimbs.” [9]


Fact  2.  “…too many structural differences between Archaeopteryx and modern birds for the latter to be descendants of the former.” [10]





Myth   Fish to amphibian to reptile to mammal evolution


This idea is based on evolutionary assumptions that require ancestors.  “The evidence must be evaluated independently of any assumption about the truth of the theory being tested.” [11]


Fact  1.  The mode of reproduction of amphibians and reptiles are different with no satisfactory Darwinian explanation as to how the change could occur. [12]


Fact  2. “At a molecular level there is no trace of an evolutionary transition from fish > amphibian >reptile > mammal.” [13]





Myth  Piltdown Man as a missing link


Fact   Proved to be a fraud.  Constructed from a modern human skull perhaps thousands of years old and part of a more recent modern ape jaw modified to look like it went with the skull. [14]





Myth  The horse series has been used as a proof for evolution in textbooks, other media and museums.    Newer horse series attempts include multiple branching from the linear series and some kinds removed and/or combined.


Facts   Problems with the horse series include:


1.  Rib pairs vary from 18 to 15 to 19 and back to 18. [15][16]


2.  Lumbar vertebrae vary from 6 to 8 and back to 6. [17]


3.  Most horses lived (or were buried) at almost the same time according to the fossil record. [18]


4.  Three toed horses have been found with one toed horses. [19][20]


5.  Differences between short (low) crowned teeth with rounded cusps and narrow roots to long (high) crowned with open roots involve intelligent design not micro or macroevolution.  “There is no evidence of change from one tooth structure to another.” [21]


6.  A study of the fossil record indicates instead of a progressive series that there are at least three groups/kinds of animals within the horse family Equidae.[22][23]


7.  “Many specimens placed in separate species are actually variations of the same species.” [24] These variations can be attributed to a designed in ability to adapt to various environmental conditions and hybridization. [25]


Size changes prove nothing as horses come in many sizes today. [26][27]





Myth   Darwin’s 14 species of finches


Fact  Main difference is beak size that oscillates with climatic conditions.  The species may not be true species as evidence suggests that the finches choose mates by beak morphology and song patterns.  At least half of the finch species hybridize though infrequently, and the hybrids do better than the parental species.  This merging of species is opposite of the branching required by neo-Darwinism.[28]





Myth   Kettlewell’s experiments on variants of peppered moths given as a classical story of natural selection in introductory biology textbooks. [29] 


Fact  1.  Peppered moths were in two existing varieties of light- colored and dark-colored.  The light-colored variety was predominant, but this started to change in the industrial revolution. 


Fact  2.  Kettlewell theorized that the changes were the result of the lighter moths being more visible on tree trunks darkened by industrial pollution and were therefore more easily prey to birds.  To test this theory, Kettlewell made releases of peppered moths of both varieties that had been marked unto tree trunks and later recaptured as many as he could.  The percentages of each variety captured agreed with his theory.


Fact  3.  His experiments were flawed as peppered moths in the wild do not normally rest on tree trunks but under small branches.   Also, Kettlewell’s releases were made in the daytime while the peppered moths fly at night.  Later, contradictory results from other areas of England and other parts of the world indicated other factors had to be the cause. [30]





Myth   Neanderthals are not human but an extinct side branch of the evolutionary tree.  This idea was promoted by the French paleontologist Marcellin Boule and believed by most people in the early twentieth century. [31]


Fact  This idea was based on the stooped posture of some of the Neanderthal fossils leading to the cave man idea.

Now, however, it is known that Neanderthals walked upright, were hunters, processed vegetables with grinding tools, made jewelry, and performed surgery.   From the first completed Neanderthal genome, it is known that they were fully human related to people living in Eurasia.  They also interbred with modern humans based on skeletal remains in Iberia that were part modern and part Neanderthal. [32]





Myth   Homology redefined by Darwin’s followers means structural similarity due to common ancestry.  Most used examples are vertebrate limbs. [33]


Fact  1.  Redefined definition involves the logical fallacy of circular reasoning (i.e. the only reason to believe that structural similarity comes from common ancestry is the belief in common ancestry.)


Fact  2.  Homologous features can arise in different ways of development.


Fact  3. There is a “lack of correspondence between genes and structures.” [34]





Myth   “Generally, the embryos of the most distinct species belonging to the same class are closely similar, but become, when fully developed, widely dissimilar.” - Charles Darwin


Fact  Darwin was misled by Haeckel’s faked drawings of embryos that falsely showed embryos at the earliest stages most similar.   Actually, embryos are not similar in appearance until after gastrulation, the fourth stage, and even then, are easy to tell apart.   Then they diverge and become very dissimilar. [35]





Myth  Recapitulation: the idea that embryos in their development pass the adult forms of their ancestors beginning from the earliest to the latest. [36]


Fact  There is no empirical evidence for this idea that comes from an evolutionary mindset.





Myth  Vestigial organs: “(A)pparently useless structures” said to “provide evidence for evolution.” [37]   An evolutionary revisionist definition: “Any part of an organism that has diminished in size during its evolution because the function it served decreased in importance or became totally unnecessary.” [38]


Fact  1.  “It is scientifically unsound to make any assumptions of the way things ought to be.” [39]


Fact  2.  Almost all the so-called vestigial organs have been proven to have definite purposes.  Of the 180 vestigial organs previously claimed by evolutionists in humans, [40] the definite uses of only a few are not known. 


Fact  3.  Evolutionists have claimed that the following are useless vestiges in humans, but definite functions are now known:


1.  Appendix- part of lymphatic system, [41] and storehouse of useful bacteria that help digest food [42]


2.  Liver - has over 500 functions including producing quick energy, removing wastes from blood and fighting infections. [43]


3.  Spleen - part of lymphatic system. [44] 

Spleen-less men are twice as likely to die from heart disease and pneumonia [45]


4. Tonsils - part of lymphatic system - significant function in protecting the throat from infections.[46]


5.  Peyer’s patch - part of lymphatic

 system [47]


6.  Thymus -triggers the immune system by activating T cells [48]


7.  Coccyx (tail bone) - supports the bones around the pelvis and convergence point for small muscles.   It is not possible to sit comfortably without it. [49]


8.  Semi-lunar fold - in charge of cleaning and lubricating the eyeball. [50]





Myth   Junk DNA:  This claim in support of evolution was based on the fact that proteins are coded by 1.5% of the human genome with the rest of the genome assumed useless.


Fact  The ENCODE project provides “convincing evidence that the (human) genome is pervasively transcribed, such that the majority of its bases can be found in primary transcripts, including, non-protein coding transcripts.”  With all that DNA being transcribed, it must be used for something therefore it is not junk.   Also, the biochemical functions of 80% of the genome outside the protein-coding regions have been assigned. [51]                                                                        






Myth   Human and chimp DNA are 98.5% identical.   This is a common argument as evidence of common ancestry.


 Fact  1.  “(H)umans don’t look or act 98.5 percent identical to chimps.”  The 98.5% figure pertains only to the portion of the DNA that codes for proteins.  The DNA outside the protein-coding region accounting for about 98 % of the genome is different between humans and chimps. [52]


Fact  2.  Eighty percent of the non- protein-coding DNA in humans has been shown to have biological regulatory functions with functions of the remainder to be determined.[53]


Fact  3.  Considering the different DNA outside the protein-coding region makes common ancestry impossible within the time available based on evolutionary assumptions. [54]





Myth   Humans and apes have a common ancestor.


Fact  1.  The human Y chromosome containing about 60 million nucleotide subunits determines male sexual characteristics and differs radically in sequence and gene content from chimps. [55]


Fact  2.  DNA methylation patterns between humans and chimps are very different.  Methylation provides “critical regulation of the activity of DNA-manipulating enzymes both during embryonic development and during the daily life of adult cells.” [56]





Myth   Lucy (Australopithecus afarensis) is promoted by many evolutionists as the best example of a missing link from apes to humans. [57] 


Fact  1.  In 1974 in the Afar Depression of Ethiopia, Johanson and Gray discovered the 40% complete skeleton of this animal.  Hands and feet were missing.


It stood approximately 3’-6” tall, weighed approximately 50 pounds, had gorilla like ”U” shaped jaw, teeth far larger than humans, a brain one quarter the size of humans,  and hip and knee joints that may suggest upright walking but not in the human manner. Other Australopithecus fossils have long curved fingers and long curved toes suitable for swinging from branch to branch.   Some researchers have concluded that Lucy is a wrongly combined mosaic of two or three species. [58]


Fact  2.  Lucy is now considered by many researchers to be an extinct ape and not an ancestor of humans. [59][60]  





Myth  Fossils found below a stratum are older than those found in that stratum.


Fact 1.  This idea results from two principles of stratification held since 1669: superposition and lateral continuity.  These principles had been accepted without experimental verification.


Fact 2.  Recent experimental results indicate that multiple strata will form at the same time when a certain amount of current is present.  In such cases as the strata spread, part of the upper stratum will be older than part of the lower stratum. [61]





Myth   Extinctions are necessary for evolution and the fact that there have been extinctions prove evolution.


"The theory of natural selection is grounded on the belief that each new variety, and ultimately each new species, is produced and maintained by having some advantage over those with whom it comes into competition; and the consequent extinction of less favored forms almost inevitably follows." - Charles Darwin [62] 


Fact  1.  "There is no hard evidence that any observable extinctions were caused by competition from closely related species." [63 ]  When evolutionary biologists tried "to test the effect of competition the results were negative." [64 ] 


Fact  2.  Extinction tells us nothing about how dinosaurs came into being. [65] There is no evidence that the random process of extinction could effectively remove all traces of ancestral and transitional forms and leave the existing species so isolated. [66]





Myth   Miller-Urey experiment proved that life could have originated by chance.


Fact  1.  Just made some amino acids from methane gas which is a universe away from creating life. 


Fact  2.  “(I)f large amounts of methane had been present in the primitive atmosphere, the earliest rocks would have a high proportion of organic molecules, and this is not the case.” [67]





Myth   Panspermia: the idea that life was originally seeded by extraterrestrials.


Fact  1.  This idea comes from the realization that life evolving on earth is very improbable.   There is no shred of evidence for extraterrestrial life.


Fact  2.  The chance of life forming somewhere else in the universe by natural means has not been demonstrated to be any greater than on earth.


Fact 3.  "At present, if we are to exclude UFOs and the claims of Von Daniken and his fellow travelers, there is no shred of evidence for extraterrestrial life..." [68]


The preceding myths of evolution are but a sample of the many myths that evolutionists have promoted and in many cases continue to promote in support of their naturalist evolutionary theory. 



(a) Peppered Moth, Ben Sale from Stevenage, UK, CC BY 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons





[1] Wells, Jonathan, Icons of Evolution Science or Myth? 1st ed. (Washington, DC: Regnery Publishing, Inc.,2002), 57

[2] Spetner, Lee M., “Not by Chance“: Comments by the Author, http://www.creationresearch.org/


[3] Denton, Michael, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis (Maryland: Adler & Adler, Publishers, Inc., 1985), 291

[4] Ibid., 91

[5] Scientific Creationism, Ed. by Morris, Henry. Arizona: Master Books, 1996, 51

[6] Johnson, Phillip E., Darwin on Trial  (Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 1993), 19

[7] Thompson, Bert. Bacterial Antibiotic Resistance--Proof of Evolution? Apologetics Press, http://www.apologeticspress.org/


[8] Wells, 112

[9] Dao, Christine, South Korea Moves to Correct Textbook Errors, Institute of Creation Research, 2012, http://www.icr.org./article/south-korea-moves-correct-textbook/

[10] Wells, 116

[11] Johnson, Phillip, Darwin on Trial (Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 1993), 75

[12] Ibid, 77

[13] Denton, 285

[14] Wells, 217

[15] Morris, J. 1994. What About the Horse Series? Acts & Facts. 23 (3), Institute of Creation Research, 2012, http://www.icr.org/article/what-about-the-horse-series/

[16] Hastie, Peter, What happened to the Horse? Answers in Genesis, 1995, http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/cm/v17/n4/horse

[17] Hastie

[18] Molen, Mats, The evolution of the horse, http://creation.com/horse-evolution

[19] Morris, J. 2008. The Mythical Horse Series. Acts & Facts. 37 (9): 13, Institute of Creation Research, 2012, http://www.icr.org/article/mythical-horse-series/

[20] Horse find defies evolution, Creation Ministries International, http://creation.com/horse-find-defies-evolution

[21] Molen

[22] Morris, J. 1994

[23] Molen

[24] Dao

[25] Morris, J. 2008

[26] Ibid.

[27] Modern Horses Disprove Evolution, Creation Revolution, http://creationrevolution.com/2011/04/modern-horses-disprove-evolution/

[28] Wells, Chapter 8

[29] Wells, Chapter 7

[30] Ibid.

[31] Wells, 216

[32] Thomas, B. 2011. Identifying Neandertal Man. Acts & Facts. 40 (3):18, Institute of Creation Research, http://www.icr.org/article/identifying-neandertal-man/

[33] Wells, Chapter 4

[34] Ibid.

[35] Wells, Chapter 5

[36] Wells, 87

[37] Davis and Solomon, The World of Biology, 3rd ed. (Philadelphia: Saunders College Publishing, 1986), 713

[38] Bergman, Jerry, Do Any Vestigial Organs Exist in Humans? Answers in Genesis http//www.answersingensis.org/articles/tj/v14/n2/vestigial

[39] Behe, Michael, Darwin’s Black Box (New York: The Free Press, 2003), 227

[40] Bergman

[41] The Myth of Vestigial Organs, Darwinism Refuted, http://www.darwinismrefuted.com/embryology_02.html

[42] Koerth-Baker, Vestigial Organs Not So Useless After All, Studies Find, National Geographic News, July 20, 2009, http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/


[43] Summary of Liver Functions, British Liver Trust, http://www.britishlivertrust.org.uk/


[44] The Myth of Vestigial Organs

[45] Koerth-Baker

[46] The Myth of Vestigial Organs

[47] Ibid.

[48] Ibid.

[49] Ibid.

[50] Ibid.

[51] Tomkins, Jeffrey, ENCODE Reveals Incredible Genome Complexity and Function, Institute of Creation Research, 2012, http://www.icr.org/article/7064/

[52] Thomas, Brian, DNA Study Contradicts Human/Chimp Common Ancestry, Institute of Creation Research, 2011, http://www.icr.org/article/dna-study-contradicts-human-chimp-common/

[53] Tomkins

[54] Thomas

[55] Wells, Johathan, The Myth of Junk DNA (Seattle: Discovery Institute Press, 2011), 111

[56] Thomas, Brian, Stark Differences Between Human and Chimp Brains, Institute of Creation Research, 2012, http://www.icr.org/articles/type/9/

[57] Plaisted, David, Problems with Lucy and Skull 1470, http://www.cs.unc.edu/~plaisted/ce/lucy.html

[58] Morris, John D., Was Lucy An Ape-man? Institute of Creation Research, http://www.icr.org/article/1072/372/

[59] Plaisted

[60] Morris, John D.

[61] Experiments in Stratification - http://youtube.com/watch?v=hka_2cqju0A

[62]Johnson, Phillip, The Extinction of Darwinism, Review of Extinction: Bad Genes or Bad Luck by David M. Raup (Norton 1991), The Atlantic, February, 1992

[63] Ibid.

[64] Ibid.

[65] Scientific Creationism, Ed. by Henry M. Morris (Arizona: Master Books, 1985), 58

[66] Denton, 136

[67] Wells, Icons of Evolution, Chapter 2

[68] Denton, 260



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