The Significance Of The Races In The World

(Editor’s Note. Following is the substance of an address delivered by the Rev. R. C. Harbach for the League of Men’s Societies at its fall meeting in 1966. Deeming this address instructive, the League asked that it be published in our magazine, and we gladly concur with this request. H.C.H.) 

Prior to the Flood, we are unable to trace man’s ancestry, except in the revelation of Scripture. There we learn that Jehovah created man in His image, in distinction from the animals, which were made “after their kind.” Then the human race multiplied out of the family of Adam. Sin having sprung out of the individual first of all, it soon spread to the family, thence to society, and finally infected the race, which in turn became so corrupt that God destroyed it with a universal flood, except for a remnant of humanity, which preserved the human race. Science has no information relative to this period to offer, either to confirm or to deny the above biblical history. 

Continuing, the human race multiplied, spreading throughout the earth as separate peoples, speaking diverse languages, a factor brought about by divine judgment. City life is evident in this period. Science has no information relative to this period, either, although philosophy inserts here in this era its hoaxes of the Cro-Magnon and Neanderthal man. All the races of the world are, according to Scripture, the descendants of Adam. 

God “hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation.” (Acts 17:26) God made the race of men, not from a similarity of bloods (which is all the evolutionists are able to discover as to the relation of human to other bloods), but out of one blood, i.e., out of the blood of Adam (“Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us?” (Mal. 2:10), and Eve (“because she was the mother of all living.” (Gen. 3:20) Man’s racial beginnings, then, go back to the timebefore Abraham and after Noah and the Tower of Babel. 

But the point of view of Scripture is national, rather than racial. Abraham is the father of many nations; in him and in his Seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed. The biblical word goyim used to designate the nations of the world is not a racial word, nor is it a Jewish word; it is a Hebrew ethnological term. We find the word six times in Gen. 10 (5,20,31,32, twice) used to express certain divisions of mankind, but these divisions are not particularly racial. We read that the isles, i.e., the seacoasts (settlements would naturally follow the coasts first), the seacoasts of the Gentiles (goyim) were “divided in their lands, every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations (goyim)” (Gen. 10:5). Here is a fourfold division: geographical (isles), lingual (tongue), tribal (families) and ethnological (nations). The word goyim is translatedheathen 148 times, nations 373 times and people 11 times. But not only are the Japhethites by this word said to be Gentiles (in v. 5) and the Hamites are in v. 20 proved to be Gentiles, but verses 31 and 37 prove that the word applies likewise to the Shemites. They are goyim also! 

Also in Scripture we find the word people sometimes used in relation to the word nation. “This nation (goi) is Thy people (am).” (Ex. 33:13) There is a word for tribe, which means family, not race. The N.T. has a word forpeople from which we get our word laity; it has a synonym from which we get our word ethnic, another from which we get our word democrat, another word which means crowd, and a word often translatedkindred. But there is no word for race in the Bible. In order to express the idea of the whole human race, four of these words are used together in the same connection: peoples, kindreds, tongues and nations. Scripture does recognize the fact that there are races, but it knows no superior race. The Word of God does not teach the superiority, nor the inferiority, of Jew, Greek, Scythian, Barbarian, Cretians or Arabians. Neither does the Bible teach any racial equality or inequality. The idea of equality is a metric concept which is not applicable to organisms. Poodles are neither equal nor unequal to collies. Some poodles are all a man can handle on a leash. A large poodle and a shaven collie would look like “Mutt and Jeff.” But poodles and collies are merely two different kinds of dogs. The idea of equality does not enter here. It is not to the point to speak of Japanese and Germans as equal or unequal. They are neither, but are two distinct races with different traits and characteristics. “Racial equality” is a political fiction which has no basis in reality. 

But since the Bible does speak of Japhetic, Hamitic and Shemitic lands, countries, tongues, families and nations, then it does speak of races. We are especially interested in The Significance of the Races in the World, considering, I. Their Origin, II. Their Rise and III. Their Destinies. 

The biblical account of the origin of the races of mankind is rejected by the modernistic thinkers of the public schools, colleges and universities, and, generally, by today’s men of “science.” Denying the inerrancy and inspiration of Scripture, they assume the hypothesis of evolution as the answer. S. R. Driver, professor of Hebrew at Oxford adequately represents the modern position. He states, “The first 11 chapters of Genesis, it may safely be assumed, report faithfullywhat was currently believed among the Hebrewsrespecting the early history of mankind: they contain no account of the real beginnings of man, or of human civilization, upon the earth.” (HBD, IV, 792) The Genesis narrative is, accordingly, merely Hebrew folk-lore, with a conception of God which is naive and “imperfectly disengaged from polytheism,” the latter supposed because of such plural references to God as “Let us go down, and there confound their language.” (11:7) Chapter Eleven of Genesis onlyostensibly accounts “for the distribution of man over the face of the whole earth.”‘ It does not really do so. For modernists, educational and ecclesiastical, contend that the Genesis account is deprived of all historical or scientific value. For to be truly historical, scientific and scholarly, the ‘Paleolithic’ man and the ‘Neolithic’ man must be taken into account. For they existed. But the biblical history does not go back that far; “and any explanation, purporting to account for the populations of the earth, and the diversity of languages spoken by them, can be no historically true account either of the diffusion of mankind, or of the diversity of speech,” (ibid.) unless it takes cognizance of them! 

According to the theory of evolution, besides the “Paleolithic” man and the “neolithic” man there are -also the so called “Ape Man of Java (Pithecanthropus Erectus),” the “Piltdown Man,” the “Heidelberg Man,” the “Neanderthal Man” and the “Cro-Magnon Man.” These are claimed to be “men” which actually existed. As a matter of fact, we have only clay models of them, which are products of pure imagination. For there are by no means complete skeletal remains of these “men,” but only fragments of skulls, a leg bone, and some teeth. From these smithereens, sculptured busts and artists’ conceptions have been made and offered to a gullible public as proof of man’s evolution from a low animal form. 

Take first the Ape Man of Java (Pithecanthropus), so called, (but merely a piece of a skull cap), found by a man named Dubois on the bank of a river in Java in 1891. But he hid this ‘man’ (bone!) for 30 years from the public. Hence, scientific men could not verify or disprove his finding. Who will believe that after such a long period of seclusion, demonstrative proof was established? A plaster cast of this bone-fragment somehow came into the hands of a Prof. Scott of Princeton University. Pictures of this facsimile were spread throughout the newspapers and magazines of the land in the name of science. Where is the real Mr. Pithecanthropus? Will he please stand up? The Christian, however, cannot moan the loss of a ‘missing link’ when, not just links, but whole chains are missing! 

Second, the so called Piltdown Man is a collection of four skull fragments, a jaw fragment, and a tooth. There is no evidence, and therefore no certainty that the jaw fragment belongs to the skull fragments. The lower jaw of the Piltdown Man, therefore, may not be Piltdown’s lower jaw; and his upper jaw is not! That is, it was never found; but in the reconstructed Piltdown Man the upper jaw is only a plaster of Paris filling to give some idea of what he might have looked like. Thus scientific (?) imagination again! 

Third, the Man of Heidelberg is merely a jaw-bone found in 1907 near Mauer, Germany. It may have belonged to a man the size of Goliath, as it is unusually large, though there are similar structures found among negroes. This piece is no evidence of evolution. At best, it is evidence of a man possibly of giant proportions . But it is only a bony part of a man! The so called Cro-Magnon Man (a Paleolithic man) is only a skull of about the size and shape of Darwin’s own skull capacity and profile. 

On such suspicious and uncertain grounds the “scientific” (evolutionary) point of view rests. What is given as real evidence for this position is that which seems to lend support to evolutionism. But evidence which would prove to the contrary is never given. And the evidences of human remains given as proof of evolution are no different from the skeletal remains of today. 

But according to the Bible and the Genesis record in particular, the racial beginnings of man stem from “the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread.” (Gen. 9:19) The race developed in a three-fold direction, the record of which is found in the brief account of the three national registers of Genesis, chapter ten. The races are there presented under the figure of a hub and wheel. The rim of the wheel is first circumscribed in the Japhetic peoples, the farthest removed over the earth. Then more detail is depicted in the spokes of the wheel representing the Hamitic nations. They are, naturally, somewhat nearer the center. Then the Shemites are the hub of the wheel. If we may borrow from a James-original, this is the wheel of existence (James 3:6), the wheel of the races. It rolls in the direction of the descent of the Seed of the Woman.