If people came from monkeys, why are monkeys still around?
Human beings did not evolve from any currently living species; We simply share a common ancestor with other primates. To fully answer this question, allow me to make an analogy: Dogs were bred from wolves by humans (yet we still have wolves). The reason for this is that in the wild, wolves do not leave behind more offspring for having the characteristics that humans like (soft fur, a certain color, etc.). When humans first began raising wolves, they selected the individual wolves that had the characteristics they liked and allowed them to reproduce; While not allowing the wolves that had characteristics they did not like to reproduce. The environments of the ancestors of modern day dogs and modern day wolves determined how they ended up today. The same applies to chimps and humans: Our ancestors were in different environments and so we have evolved differently. Our early ancestors lived on the savannah with few trees which made it more advantageous to walk upright.
What evidence is there for Evolution?
To give two examples: Charles Darwin predicted that since we are anatomically most similar to the great apes of Africa, it was most likely that we evolved in Africa, and therefore intermediate fossils (between a small brained knuckle walking ape and homo sapiens) would be found in Africa. Sure enough, this prediction has been proven true and we have a beautiful series of intermediate fossils to illustrate it. Another evidence for the theory of evolution is the fact that human beings develop a hairy coat called the lanugo when they are in the womb, only to shed it before they are born. This suggests that our development was modified (sloppily) from a prior form (a hairier ape than Homo Sapiens). To learn more about the evidence for evolution, I recommend reading "The 29 Evidences for Macroevolution".
Isn't evolution just a theory?
From Scientific American:According to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), a scientific theory is "a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can incorporate facts, laws, inferences, and tested hypotheses." No amount of validation changes a theory into a law, which is a descriptive generalization about nature. So when scientists talk about the theory of evolution--or the atomic theory or the theory of relativity, for that matter--they are not expressing reservations about its truth. In addition to the theory of evolution, meaning the idea of descent with modification, one may also speak of the fact of evolution. The NAS defines a fact as "an observation that has been repeatedly confirmed and for all practical purposes is accepted as 'true.'"
How did life begin?
No one knows with complete certainty. Scientists have managed to create "protocells" which can grow, absorb nutrients, and reproduce. In fact, these protocells form from things like lipid membranes and nucleic acids which form easily in origin of life experiments. However, this is more complicated than it may seem: There is no universally accepted definition of life. These protocells would be considered alive if one's definition of life is the ability to feed, grow, reproduce and evolve. However, some scientists feel that something must be able to respond to its environment before it is considered alive (An example of responding to the environment is when plants grow towards a source of light). For these cells to be able to respond to their environment they would have to have the "molecular machines" that modern day cells have. Since these machines are composed of proteins, and proteins are made by the modern day genetic code (RNA and DNA) we need to understand how the genetic code evolved (For a good review of the evolution of the genetic code, see this video). Unfortunately, no one has a complete explanation of this, but here are some things we do know which shed light on its origin:RNA ribozymes can put together short protein fragments called peptides.RNA can evolve into DNA.Research has shown that some ribozymes can act as both messenger and transfer RNA (Radically simplifying the evolution of the genetic code). References for these statements made may be found here (footnotes 9-11).
Can Mutations Increase the Information in the Genome?
Yes. I have written an article about this and Touchstone has written a blog post about this argument.
What about the seashells on the mountain/the mentions of dinosaurs in the bible/the trees going through several layers of strata?
Simply see the hyperlinks above for answers to these questions. If you have another question like this, it will most likely be answered by searching for some of the key terms and phrases here.