The theory of evolution is not quite correct, but it is in the right vicinity, and it is a tool. It is a good and useful tool that accomplishes many things in many fields of research and applied science.

Let us consider an adjustable wrench. To begin with, an adjustable wrench is a compromise tool. It isn’t generally the best bet, but let’s assume that precision box-end wrenches are not an option, and good pliers are not available either.

This wrench is old, rusty, loose, nicked, slightly bent, and poorly toleranced, but guess what, it will turn nuts of various sizes. It will get the job done. The worker doesn’t care about all the particulars. He just wants the nuts tightened or loosened. It is irrelevant to him that it has so many flaws. It works.

Now, in comes Mr. Fundamentalist. He says, “You cannot use that wrench! God said, “Thou shalt only use a screw driver.” The workman doesn’t care. He just grabs the wrench and tightens the assembly.

Mr. Fundamentalist cannot believe that this workman can be so cavalier and pay so little heed to the command of God. So, Mr. Fundamentalist enlists the help of others. He finds preachers who agree with him, who will preach fire and brimstone down on the workman. Mr. Fundamentalist enlists scientists who will claim that the second law of thermal dynamics insists that metals cannot solidify into strong wrenches that can turn nuts. The workman doesn’t care; he just keeps using the wrench to turn nuts.

So, Mr. Fundamentalist gets more insistent, and the workman stops and asks to see chapter and verse. When Mr. Fundamentalist gets out his bible and starts showing the workman, the workman realizes that the bible doesn’t say that at all. When he says so, Mr. Fundamentalist starts explaining how this means this, and that means that, and all in all, the bottom line is that if he keeps using the wrench, he will go to hell.

“Well,” says the workman, “I don’t know much, but I trust God as best as I can, and I’ll get to heaven or hell a lot faster if I quit using the wrench, since my boss will fire me, and I will starve to death with no job to buy food.”