As far as I’m concerned, when someone asks the question “do you believe in evolution?” there are two responses.
If you do believe that the diversity of life on earth is the result of a hereditary process similar or identical to Darwin’s theory, you should say “Yes, I believe in evolution”
If you do not believe that theory is basically correct, you think life arose according to different means, then you should answer “No, I don’t believe in
But for some reason, I have never heard a christian say “No, I don’t believe in evolution” in answer to that very simple question.
For some reason, somebody somehow has convinced every christian I spoke to about this that the best answer to “Do you believe in evolution?” is to ask “Micro or Macroevolution?”
…Please… Never do that!
1. It’s not Necessary: You know exactly what they mean when they ask you “Do you believe in evolution?” they are saying “Are you one of those Christians who disagrees with Darwin?” and you know the answer “Yes I am!” so why would you ask a clarifying question? has there ever been a person who’s benefited from that clarification? Somebody who’s said something like”Oh I’m just asking about microevolution, thanks for clarifying. I’m not sure if the fact that I tan more easily than my parents is a sign that they’re not really my parents after all!”
2. It’s not Pleasant: You want them to want to talk to you, this does the opposite! Not only did you know what they meant, but now that you’ve asked, they know what you should have answered! Nobody ever asks “Micro or macroevolution?” if they believe both (or just macro) people only ask if they basically disagree with the theory. But now the asker has to sit there and follow the script anyway saying “I mean both” just to hear you say what they already knew you were going to say from the start.
3. It’s not Strategic: Sometimes it’s useful to do some pre-debate posturing before you begin a discussion to help things go in your favor later. Establish some favorable parameters maybe, or preemptively stop an argument you think they are going to try. This tactic seems sort of like that, except that it doesn’t help you in any way. All that’s going to happen is they’re going to say “I meant both” and then you’re going to say “well i believe in micro and not macro” and they’re going to say “I believe both” and you’re going to say “I’m glad we have that established” and then it will never be referenced again. What good is this?
4. It’s not Winsome: Let’s face it, this is a discussion to have with non-believers. Even if you’re talking to a christian, it’s probably for practice so you’ll be ready when it comes up in evangelism. The most important thing then is that you make your worldview seem compelling and attractive. it’s much better to lose an argument in an evangelistic setting while still seeming reasonable and attractive, than it is to win a debate at the cost of embittering your “opponent”. Asking this question isn’t winsome. it immediately starts the discussion on the foot of “I’m using big technical words, I know more than you, and I’m going to put you on the defensive”
5. It’s not Intelligent: Even if this tactic weren’t Necessary, Pleasant, Strategic or Winsome, it could still be worth something if it would help you to prove yourself as educated. Evolutionists sometimes assume that anyone who doesn’t believe evolution just doesn’t know their science, if you lay down some good scientific categories right at the start that might change things a little. But Macro and Micro are NOT good scientific categories. We discovered that there’s no good “line of demarcation” or dividing line, between what should be called “micro” and what should be “macro” so Scientists have stopped using those terms. Now the only people that use them are Creationists. That means it does the opposite of what you want. Rather than make you sound more educated, it immediately informs the skeptic that you are either uninformed about recent scientific development, or getting all of your information from biased Christian resources.