For the first Q&A Sunday, I’m going to respond to Catherine’s statements and questions from a Facebook thread on my wall. She’s been waiting extremely patiently for this response, so I will make it worth the wait. For the original thread you can click here. If you aren’t my friend on Facebook you won’t see it so just send me a request.
The flood is less in conflict with evolutionary thought, more with geology. Since geologists can look at layers of the earth, the thought is that a global flood would show a layer of silt or sandstone (probably wrong terminology since I only took one geo class in college). Geologists can see localized floods in the strata, and also ash layers from volcanos, or compacted sand from desert environments, but there's no similar aged flood layer from all parts of the earth. Also seashells on mountains are explained by mountains being pushed up by plates moving. So question, if people that believe in the whole earth flood don't believe in plate tectonics or modern geological theories, what are earthquakes? Scientific theory explains the ones we have here as one plate subducting under another, basically melting under the plate that has most of the US on it. I'm curious what the alternate theory is. Thanks!
I’d like to just start by pointing out that Darwinian evolution is intricately tied to geology. Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection was, in large part, inspired by the book Principles of Geology by Charles Lyell. Without this book Darwin may never have penned On the Origin of the Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (bold print mine). Lyell’s theory of uniformitarianism was a major influence to Darwin as he traveled and studied the different animal species. I don’t want to get too heavy into this point because it’s a peripheral issue, but needless to say, uniformitarian geology and Darwinian evolution may as well be conjoined twins, so close is there relation and dependence upon one another.
To quickly illustrate this symbiotic relationship before moving on, there are two facts well-known to those involved in these areas. One is that the fossils are dated based upon what rock layer they are found in, and two, that the rock layers are primarily dated by which fossils are found in them. This is circular, and it continues to be a hilarious tragedy to me that the two fields seem to be willingly ignorant of how the other goes about the dating process. Of course radiocarbon dating is also employed but has been shown to be unreliable in many cases. Again, I’m sidetracking a little so I’ll move on.
Catherine made a statement that there’s no single-aged flood layer globally. This is true, but no one in the worldwide flood camp believes there is, nor would they ever consider it, because the belief is that ALL sedimentary layers were deposited during the global flood. This is a classic example of two very different paradigms interpreting the same data through their respective lenses. We all agree on the following points:
- There are sedimentary layers
- There are fossils in those layers
- Certain kinds of animals are semi-consistently found in relatively the same layers around the world
So, these are things we all believe. The Darwinist will look at these facts and come to vastly different conclusions than the Young Earth Creationists, but these facts alone are not enough to draw a firm conclusion. This is a puzzle, an enormous puzzle for which we do not have all the pieces. Realizing that no one has all the pieces, there are things that the Darwinists do not factor in at all, and in doing so are showing either that they are ignorant of these other facts, or that they are aware of them and are deliberately suppressing these truths.
Add to these three points the fact that there are histories, oral and written, from every major people group on Earth, societies both primitive and sophisticated, which tell of a global flood. Many of these flood legends closely mirror the biblical story.
Then bring in the puzzle piece called the Cambrian Explosion, which features only fully-formed life forms with no evolutionary predecessors, and every animal phyla is contained in the Cambrian System – so picture, instead of an evolutionary tree (which was a figment of Charlie’s imagination), an evolutionary field of trees; each tree representing all of the major kinds, and the branches all of the rich variation within each kind. This is far more consistent with a creation model than the common descent model, and incidentally harmonizes perfectly with a global flood.
Mix in the fact that the layers of Geologic Column (which does not actually exist – ask me for more info) were dated prior to any kind of radiometric isotope dating process was invented. The Geologic Column itself must be pieced together, inverted, rearranged, or otherwise forced in hundreds of locations all around the world.
There are many more evidences for a global flood, but the above puzzle pieces, when added to the rest of the facts, go a long way to piecing together a picture much more consistent with the biblical account of creation and a catastrophic flood. Just a couple more quick facts for your consideration, before I finish responding to Catherine’s comment:
- There’s fossil evidence of rapid burial of plants and animals all over the world. Animals are found fossilized which were buried while giving birth, fighting with one another, and other activities not common to animals dying a slow death and being slowly buried by sediment over millions of years.
- Also, trees have been found going through multiple layers of sediment, which indicates a rapid burial.
The common response by evolutionists is that all of this evidence is really just pointing to local floods, but in many cases a local flood could not account for the findings. Again though, bringing the other pieces in, especially the hundreds of global flood legends, only cognitive dissonance could account for a rational, intelligent human not putting two and two together here.
Phrased another way, if every culture has an ancient tradition of a certain global event, and then scientific evidence of this event is also found, even if that evidence could possibly support a contrary theory, Ockham’s Razor tells us that the best answer is the simplest one. If it looks, walks, and quacks like a duck…
The explanation Catherine offers for seashells and other aquatic fossils being found on mountaintops is outdated. She mentioned only having taken only one geology class in college, so we’ll give her a pass on this one, but this explanation was formulated prior to the current understanding of plate tectonics. Besides, this explanation flies in the face of one of uniformitarian geology’s most sacred beliefs, the Geologic Column! Even if geological forces could account for the sea floor being pushed up so far, these fossils should still be way, way down in a lower sedimentary layer.
In response to the last portion of the comment, we do indeed believe in plate tectonics. A belief in the very scientific theory of plate tectonics does not require an unscientific belief that every mountaintop that contains aquatic fossils was once a seabed.
According to the global flood theory the waters sprang up from below the crust of the earth in addition to the water canopy falling down as torrential rain. This process pushed up the mountains and carved out the valleys, rapidly burying plant and animal life exactly how we find it today in the fossil record. If there was a global flood you would find the slowest and lowest creatures primarily in the bottom layer, moving up you would find the faster and higher-dwelling creatures, and the fastest and most intelligent would be primarily in the highest layers, but likely much less frequent since they would have been much higher and therefore not buried as commonly as those that were lower and slower.
There is so much more that could be said, but I’m well over a thousand words now, so I’ll leave the rest for another time. Thanks to Catherine for her questions, and for being a good sport as I use them for blog-fuel. And congratulations on being the first to have your question featured on Q&A Sunday at the view from here!
To submit a question for consideration just messages me on Facebook or Twitter. I’ll let you know if I’m using your question in advance.