The Story of the Scope’s Trial
“He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind.” Proverbs 11:29
In 1925 the state of Tennessee passed a law forbidding the teaching of evolution. Soon after the law was passed the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) wanted to test the new law. John T. Scopes was hired to violate the law. The rest is history.
How did it all begin?
In 1922, John Butler, a representative for Tennessee, heard of a woman’s faith that was shaken after she had gone to a university and was taught evolution. He determined to pass a law to stop the teaching of evolution. Thirty-one year old George Rappalyea came to Tennessee on a geological expedition. He was a strong supporter of evolution and had a strong distaste for Christianity.
During the time his hatred for Christianity was deepening, he attended a funeral of an eight year old child. The minister reportedly said, “Because the boy was not baptized, he went to hell.”
When he heard of the anti-evolution law being passed he purposed revenge on those people. He wrote to the ACLU and asked them if they would take on the case. After getting a positive response from their New York office, George asked his friend John Scopes if he would be willing to be arrested for violating the new law. Scopes agreed. George swore out a warrant for Scope’s arrest and four days later he was indicted.
The Battle Begins
Once the report made the news, William (Silver Tongue) Jennings Bryant volunteered his services to prosecute Scopes. Bryan was considered by many to be a leader in the Christian realm. He was against evolution and referred to it as “Evilution”.
Clarence Darrow who was considered the nation’s best defense lawyer, volunteered his services to John Scopes for free. At the time, Darrow had every book on the subject of Darwin and evolution. By this time Darrow, had such a hatred toward Christianity that he hoped that this would lay the foundation for it’s destruction. This was confirmed years later when he returned to Dayton. Seeing a church being built, he remarked, “I guess I didn’t do a good job!”
Clarence Darrow knew that if evolution was true, then the Bible is not the word of God but the works of fallible man. Today, most Christian leaders still teach the concepts of evolution mixed with the principles of Christianity. Nowhere in the trial did Darrow ever claim that having the Bible in public school or during court proceedings was a violation of church and state.
As the trial began, the defense called in experts that gave testimonies to their views on evolution. The evidence that was presented has now been rejected by most evolutionists. Some of the evidence that the ACLU presented included:
• Dr. Fay Cole, an anthropologist from the University of Chicago, stated that numerous muscles and organs in the human body, over 150, have no apparent physical use thus proving evolution. Today, the medical field has proven that every muscle and organ do have a function. Therefore, the evidence at the Scope’s trial was in error. Cole also made reference to “Java Man” which has been proven to be no evidence at all.
• Professor Horatio Newman, a zoologist from the University of Chicago, showed how the evolution of man was demonstrated by the famous “Piltdown Man”. In reality, Piltdown Man was proven to be a fraud in 1953. Newman went on to say that with the evolution of the horse, one could hardly ask for a clearer or more conclusive story of Evolution. Since then, evidence has been shown that all the supposed stages of the horse family were found in the same strata formation indicating that they were contemporaries and not ancestors.
• Dr. Winterton Curtis, a Zoologist at the University of Missouri, used the concept of “Embryonic Recapitulation” as proof of evolution. Years later that theory has been thrown out as false. He also made mention of the Grand Canyon and how it could only be formed by water and millions of years. The eruption of Mt St. Helens on May 18, 1980 proved to the world that layers in rocks like the Grand Canyon could form in just hours.
These and many more were used to prove that the Bible could not be trusted, but through time proven to be false. Today, not one piece of evidence has been proven to discredit the Bible, yet evolution still reigns in over 95% of all public schools and universities around the world.
The ACLU also produced testimonies from ministers that discredited the Bible in the realm of Science. Here are just a few:
Dr. Herbert Murkett, Pastor, First Methodist Church of Chattanooga, said, “To science and not to the Bible must man look for the answer to the question as to the process of man’s Creation.”
Dr. Maynard Metcalf, John Hopkins University, said, “There is no conflict between the Bible and the fact of Evolution, but the literalist interpretation of the words of the Bible is not only puerile; it is insulting both to God and human intelligence.”
Rabbi Dr. Herman Rosenwasser, said, “Genesis itself teaches that man is descended from a lower order of animals.”
William Jennings Bryant0
For over 100 years a frontal attack on the word of God had been declared by such people as James Hutton, Charles Lyell and Charles Darwin. During the 1800s it was accepted that science and the Bible were always in agreement with each other. No one ever dreamed that theories would be allowed to be promoted like evolution unless it was supported with overwhelming facts. When millions of years were being promoted, theologians started reinterpreting Genesis instead of questioning the theories. As a result, theories trying to support millions of years were being promoted such as:
• The Gap Theory – A gap between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. This was promoted by men like Scofield and others.
• Day-Age Theory – Teaching that the days of Creation were long periods of time.
• Theistic Evolution – This theory taught that God used evolution
These and others were taught in Bible colleges and churches during Bryant’s day. The church was taking man’s unproven theories and reinterpreting God’s word.
Near the end of the trial, Darrow cross- examined Bryant on the Bible. Bryant fell right into Darrow’s hands and made a mockery of the Bible in support of science. Bryant was already being influenced by millions of years as he confessed the following:
1. He denied the literal interpretation of Genesis.
2. He rejected the days of Creation as being 24-hours. He further gave way to the Day Age theory. It is amazing that Darrow questioned Bryant twice on this subject, indicating that what one believes about the days of creation has a foundational effect on how one looks at the Bible.
3. He could not answer where Cain got his wife. Many pastors and leaders make light of that question. Even in Bible colleges it is rarely dealt with. When Cain married his sister (Genesis 5:4), brother and sister marriages were common even up until the time of Moses. Abraham and Sarah were brother and sister.
Even though Bryant was a crusader against evolution, he was already being affected by an evolutionary theory being applied to the scriptures.
During the Scope’s trial, not one person believed nor defended a literal translation of the Bible. Since the Scope’s trial, Creation, Bible reading, prayer and even the posted Ten Commandments have been removed. All of this within one generation. Most experts point to this trial as where it all started.
Today, we are told to disregard the testimony of the One who was there in the beginning. The One who knew everything. We are to take the word of infallible man whose philosophies change like the wind. Even though the evidence is consistent with the Bible, it becomes a crime to teach both side by side. Evolutionists wanted both sides taught so that the student could choose on their own.
Friend, take the word of the One who gave his life for you on the cross.
“Professing themselves to be wise. They became fools.” Romans 1:22
You may be reading this and you have never answered the most important question in your life and that is …
How does anyone get to heaven?
First realize that they cannot get to heaven on their own merits. The Bible says that “For all have sinned and come short (that means everybody can’t get to Heaven on their own) of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
Jesus Christ (who is the Son of the living God) came to earth and was born of a virgin woman (therefore he was not born of the curse of mankind) he lived a sinless life and died on a cross for all the sins in the world. Three days later, God the Father raised Him from the dead. He was seen of 500 witnesses and returned to heaven. God’s word says that if we believe these things and call upon the Lord, we will be saved. Romans 10:9 - 13