Evolution’s Fatal Flaw – Lack of Fossil Evidence | Lisa Quintana


This is a WordPress repost of an excellent article originally authored by Lisa Quintana. I am reproducing it here in it’s entirety for your reading convenience.  I have taken the liberty to highlight some of Lisa’s text in bold. As a follow-up to this particular post I would also recommend the following link: 150 Years Later, Fossils Still Don’t Help Darwin and as a follow-up book on this subject I would recommend “Darwin’s Doubt“.

In his Origin of Species (1859), Charles Darwin states the discovery of fossil records require slowly changing life from one animal species to another different species by means of natural selection.[1] His theory of evolution speculates that all life comes from one common ancestor at the base of his “tree of life” pattern, and branches out into different genera. Pointing to the lack of fossils in the geological period known as the Cambrian, Darwin believed that fossil evidence of life branching out from a single species would eventually be unearthed. It’s been 150 years now and no such evidence exists.

There is a sudden appearance of animal phyla at the base of the Cambrian era geological records. Instead of slowing evolving life as evolution suggests, complex animal fossils first appeared at the base of the Cambrian. These fossils have been our “base body plans” for most of the major animal groups that are alive today. What developmental path these more complex creatures took is still unclear since no gradually developed fossils have ever been found.

 What was the Cambrian Explosion?

The Cambrian Explosion occurred between 540 – 500 Ma (million years ago). If Darwin’s theory is correct, there should be fossils showing the evolutionary development of simple life forms into more complex ones. So far, none have been found.

The Pre-Cambrian Fossil Record

Over 90% of earth’s history took place during the pre-Cambrian period. Most life at this time consisted of primitive, single-cell bacteria. Life changed very little. Evidence points to an abrupt manifestation of new animals that appear to have developed at five times the normal rate — a highly accelerated pace.[2] Why don’t we see that rate of evolution happening today? So far in scientific history, no comparable life changes have evolved since this explosion.[3]

According to Darwin’s theory, there should be numerous fossils demonstrating how complex animal life, with eyesight and spinal cords, evolved from worm-like creatures or sponges. Scientists can only speculate what might have happened based on the existence of other organisms, living or fossilized.

The “Eyes” Have It

The development of eye-sight is first found in the Cambrian period, and the first appearance of an eyeball seems more like a miracle. Gradual change for the appearance of these developmental innovations into progressively more complex ones hasn’t been found in fossil records. Scientists do not have a good answer for how the eye evolved.

Trilobites also appeared at this time and were complex creatures that provided a blueprint for all other forms of life with legs, a spine, etc. These features now appear in over a million species of animals. Sophisticated as a modern crab – brain, gut, heart, compound eyes – trilobites shook the evolutionary world. The little trilobite’s sight still remains a frustrating quandary for scientists. Scientists’ best guess is that light somehow enhanced a mysterious, unknown selective pressure causing an eyeball to evolve.

Big Changes Need More Time

Darwin’s idea that all animals are modified descendants of one common ancestor would require millions more years’ time than what occurred during the Cambrian. He suggested beneficial variations are rare and modest changes, whereas major variations inevitably produce deformity and death. Only minor variations are viable and heritable. These variations would gradually produce favorable results to accumulate, giving rise to new species. Yet Dr. Stephen Meyers explains that only by selecting and accumulating minor variations over many generations were breeders able to produce any striking change in the features of the same breed, and these changes were very modest compared to the radical form differences between Precambrian and Cambrian life.[4]

Today some are no longer referring to a “bottoms up” approach (as in Darwin’s animal Tree of Life) in appearances for variations of species. Instead, a “top down” explanation is offered. At least one scientist calls it a “lawn” instead of a tree since the sudden appearances of all major body plans most involved in animal forms today occurred during this Cambrian era simultaneously. Recent embryological development has also shown that these basic body plans cannot evolve, or “morph,” without fatal results. This has been identified as a HOX genome that has a master regulatory function in the embryonic state, and if mutations occur in this state, it’s catastrophic. “We have no idea how this level of (body plan) organization came into existence from an evolutionary standpoint,” said Biochemist Fazale Rana, pointing out that the Cambrian Explosion continues to defy explanation. Rana says science needs to expand its evolutionary theory.[5] Evolution simply does not have explanatory power causing some scientists to ask—after Darwin, what’s next?[6]


Darwin himself said that the case for the abrupt appearance of Cambrian fossils at present remains inexplicable… and may be a valid argument against evolutionary views.[7] This unique event in the fossil record, the Cambrian Explosion, does not show a slow, incremental progression of changes but rather a quantum jump that defies a naturalistic explanation. To assume there is no other explanation than Darwin’s theory is limiting the possibilities of what truly can exist. Any science textbook that does not show the discrepancy between what evolution espouses and the actual evidence found fails to provide students all the facts allowing them to think critically about these issues. There are mysteries to life’s existence that perhaps are better understood by being open to an intelligent, mind-over-matter cause that brings purpose and meaning to life, in contrast to random, aimless chance survival.

[1] Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species (Lexington, KY: Cricket House Books, 2011. First published: 1859), 51.
[2] Ibid.
[3] Douglas Erwin & James Valentine, The Cambrian Explosion, (Greenwood Village, CO: Roberts and Company Publishers, Inc., 2013), 270.
[4] Stephen C. Meyer, Darwin’s Doubt, (New York, NY: HarperCollins, 2013), 11.
[5] I Fazale Rana, The Cambrian Mystery: Explosive Evidence for Creation, presented at The Burgess Shale Adventure in Canada (Reasons to Believe audio cd lecture series, 2013).
[6] Meyer, Darwin’s Doubt, 292.
[7] Darwin, The Origin of Species, 245.



Disciple of Jesus, married to Peggy, with 5 grown up children, 7 grand children, ex-Canadian military and residing in beautiful Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada. a.k.a. "Papa"

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Posted in Apologetics, Evolution, Intelligent Design
8 comments on “Evolution’s Fatal Flaw – Lack of Fossil Evidence | Lisa Quintana
  1. Pete says:

    Thanks Bruce. I’m going to send this on to my Darwin and believing brother. Maybe he’ll see the light.


  2. Good stuff, Bruce. Thanks for re-posting this article. You provide so many excellent resources, and I truly appreciate it!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. RJ Dawson says:

    Thanks Bruce. Regarding the subject matter in this article, I discovered something just as profound if not more so a few years ago when writing extensive notes for an as yet unpublished paper. One of the greatest, if not the greatest, flaws in the evolutionary theory regarding human beings is the simple reality of speech. Human speech requires a structural apparatus not found in any hominids or even Neanderthals. Only human beings (I guess we may say homo sapiens sapiens) possess the biological and anatomical means for creating human speech as we know it, obviously not shared (or even coming close) to that of any other known living or extinct species. Thus, we are it. But beyond the structural, physicality of speech there is the even greater underlying ability that is never learned and can never be learned. Speech is simply far too complex. Very small children are simply born with the ability to talk, though it takes a year or so to get going and maybe three or four to communicate well. There is something in the neuronal network in the brain that allows for this ability that we somehow tap into rather easily with relatively little effort. How do tiny children do this?

    In retrieving and looking through my notes from that study I found the following link that is still active: https://www.trueorigin.org/language01.php

    It is somewhat dated but it only shows that the scientific community has been aware of this for some time, at least a half century ago if not much longer. I have yet to read it again but it appears to be a good elementary study of the subject. Be blessed in your work, Bruce, and thanks again.


  4. […] Source: Evolution’s Fatal Flaw – Lack of Fossil Evidence | Lisa Quintana | Reasoned Cases for Christ […]


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