The Argument for Vestigial Organs is Vestigial

S.R. Scadding wrote, “since it is not possible to unambiguously identify useless structures, and since the structure of the argument used is not scientifically valid, I conclude that ‘vestigial organs’ provide no special evidence for the theory of evolution” (S.R. Scadding “Do Vestigial Organs Provide Evidence for Evolution?” Evolutionary Theory 5 (1981): 173). There are several reasons why the evolutionist’s vestigial argument is in fact vestigial or useless.

The Creator was an Intelligent Designer

The vestigial argument for evolution seems logical for the standpoint that a Creator like God would not have made organs in the human body or in animals which have no purpose or function. Paul agrees when he wrote, “the eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I don’t need you!’ And the head cannot say to the feet, ‘I don’t need you!’ On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it” (1 Cor. 12:21-24). The more science learns about the extreme intelligent design in the universe, the more evidence for a Creator who has unlimited intelligence.

No Fossil Evidence Exist

Did our ancestors have an appendix? If so, what was its function? The fossil record does not contain any evidence or answers. Therefore, the arguments over vestigial organs and behaviors are missing. All these arguments must be based on inferences and assumptions.

In Fact There are No Nascent Organs

Nascent is generally the opposite of vestigial, meaning “beginning to develop, on the advent or recently having come into existence” (Poppe 150). Again there is no evidence in the fossil record of the development of functional organs.

Defies Simple to Complex Evolution

If it is true that these organs have become useless then vestigial organs prove “devolution” not evolution (Sarfati 2 206) According to evolution, animals are evolving from simple forms to more complex. However, the vestigial argument calls for the ancestors of animals and humans to have been more complex evolving into something simpler.

Embryology is Often the Key

Male nipples are an example of the development of the embryo and to some extent so is the bellybutton where the umbilical cord was attached to the child developing within the womb.

Hinders Science and Health

Evolution is said to be “remarkable for its fecundity (“the ability to produce many new ideas” DRV). Indeed, evolutionary theory has spawned so many healthy new sciences that its actual reproductive success is truly spectacular” (Kitcher 81- Kitcher, P., Abusing Science, The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1982).

Yet, this argument is false. In fact, evolution’s vestigial argument has had adverse effects on human health. Once an organ is declared to be useless, it may be ignored by most scientists, or even worse, surgically removed by physicians as a useless evolutionary leftover. The dangerous result amounts to evolutionary medical malpractice.

Furthermore, this vestigial argument has often retarded advancement in medical science. Evolution is said to have given “rise to the science of embryology, but actually misled embryologists through the now thoroughly discredited theory of embryological recapitulation. The Darwinian notion of vestigial organs held back for many years the true discovery of the function of the tonsils, the appendix, and many glands, such as the thymus gland and the pineal gland. “All really significant discoveries that have been made in science since Darwin would have been made even if evolutionary theory had never been conceived, and many would have been made sooner. Evolutionary theory has been a drag on real science” (Gish 219).

Evolution does not help to explain and improve science and health, in fact, it confuses and stagnates the progress of biology.

Impossible to Prove Uselessness

Consider all the organs which have been removed from the vestigial organ list over time. Functions have been found for most of those which have previously been considered useless. One can never be certain that any organ or anatomical structure is useless. In time true science will discover the answers concerning function. Remember, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Therefore, proving an organ is truly vestigial as a result of evolution is impossible.

Uselessness Does Not Change DNA

If a scientist were to experiment on lab rats as to the effect physical modification would have on future generations of rats, he would discover that it has none. Cutting the tails off of rats from hundreds for generations will not produce a generation of rats born without tails. To cause this would require a change in the genetic code. “Darwinists assume that when cavemen started wearing animal furs, standing close to fires, and living in shelters, the extra warmth somehow changed their DNA patterns to produce less hair…the lessened need for hair was then passed on genetically to their offspring…” (Poppe 148). Unless a tail or gill slits are already in the DNA of humans, no human will be born with a true tail or gill slits.

Survival Without An Organ Does Not Prove Uselessness

The body does have the ability to function and survive without certain physical appendages and even organs. Many can live without an appendix, tonsils, spleen, wisdom teeth, etc. The body has built in redundancy which the function of a failed or missing organ may be compensated by that of another. It is like the redundancy built into computers and key boards. If you are missing an F6 key there are other ways to accomplish the task with other keys. Humans can function with one kidney, one lung, a missing toe or finger without causing any noticeable loss of function. Who would argue that any of these should be regarded as vestigial?

Organs Labeled Vestigial Still Exist

If these organs are vestigial. Why has natural selection failed to eliminated the useless organs. After all, it has eliminated many species. So why not a little appendix?

Functions of Most Human Organs Have Been Discovered

As more biological facts are uncovered, the functions of these organs have been discovered.

Some Organs May Have Unknown Functions

Perhaps, there are organs which have no known function. However, if history is any indication of what we can expect from science in the future these blanks should be filled in just a matter of time.


If it could be proven that vestigial organs do exist among animals and humans, it still would not be evidence of humans evolving from lower life forms. The Vestigial Argument is truly vestigial. The evidence against this argument is so overwhelming that many evolutionary scientists have ceased to use it. Perhaps the only true vestigial organ in the human body lies between the ears of those evolutionists who refuse to accept the facts. Perry Cotham wrote, “you can lead an atheist to evidence but you can’t make him think!”

– Daniel R. Vess

2018-10-21 - Evolution's Vestigial Argument (Part 2)
2018-11-04 - The Gospel of Mary Magdalene (Part 1)
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