The Amazing Spiderman (Andrew Garfield, 2012)
One of the reasons for human suffering is that we try to get around God. We try to improve our situation without consulting the One who controls all situations. Sometimes we even think that we can improve ourselves by our own efforts. We imagine a world where mankind itself has achieved next-level status. Many books and movies consider the possibility of the next stage of human evolution.
One notable example is Dr. Curtis Connors, who we meet in The Amazing Spiderman. He was brilliant geneticist working for Oscorp, who was researching how to combine human DNA with that of a lizard in order to allow his body to regrow his arm. The combination of the two elements caused him to regrow his arm, but also transformed him into a lizard monster. He still had genius-level intelligence, but lost his sanity. He wanted to achieve god-like status for himself.
Human beings are weak, pathetic, feeble-minded creatures. Why be human at all when we can be so much more – faster, stronger and smarter? – Dr. Curtis Connors, the Lizard
After the flood, the people that settled in the land of Shinardecided that they could build their own tower and make themselves equal to God.
“Come let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered over the face of the whole earth.” – Genesis 11:4
In the thousands of years that humans have existed on the earth, we have not evolved. We have perhaps gained inched in average height. We certainly have more scientific knowledge and better toys. People are not smarter now than in centuries past. Let me give three examples:
1) Consider that the Bible was passed along orally and that people typically memorized the entire Torah, including all the genealogies and tabernacle furnishings.
2) Adam, the first man, invented named for all the animals in the world. Admittedly, some names are beautiful and majestic (Platypus, Ocelot) while others are just their sounds (wolf, gecko) or their activity (ant-eater). But still, he named them all.
3) Around 240 B.C., Eratosthenes calculated the circumference of the earth using a stick and counting steps. His estimate was about 24,000 miles and now we know it is 24,900 miles (off by 3.75%).
The fact of the matter is that we cannot get better without God. Without God we are sinful and hard-hearted. God can make us new, clean, and allow us to be what we should.
There is no next phase of human evolution but with God, we do have something to look forward to –
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed– in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. – 1 Corinthians 15:50-52