My chief interest in Geology resides in the fact that the results of the Biblical Flood are recorded in the rocks.
It seems that most Creationists study some aspect of Geology. Much of the evidence for Creationism seems to reside in the various areas of Geology. However, since Geology is far from my field of Molecular Biology, and because almost everyone has geological arguments concerning the flood, I will not present much here. There is one topic; However, that I do wish to mention. It doesn't take too much expertise to understand or for me to explain.
Many Creationists view the presence of fossils as an indication that a specific layer has been produced by the activities of the flood. It seems logical then to identify the Cambrian as the start layer of the flood since it is the lowest layer of the geologic column to contain fossils. The Precambrian does not contain any fossils other than some possible microfossils that are apparently very questionable in nature.
It's interesting that the presence of fossils are not used to determine the ending of the flood. It is thought that many of the fossils found in the quaternary layers are actually post flood. One reason for this distinction is the fact that the area covered by a specific layer or formation is governed by topography that is evident today. Another reason is that these top layers are associated with the ice age.
The ice age is thought by many Creationists (including myself) to be a period immediately following the flood. This is a time when the continents have just separated allowing the flood waters to flow into the ocean basins of today, thus creating dry land. The reason for the ice is easy to understand. After the flood, the Earth was so massively broken up that volcanos virtually covered the landscape. I believe that most or all of the extinct volcanoes we have today come from this time shortly after the flood.
The volcanoes could have produced cold conditions much like a nuclear winter following a nuclear exchange. The effect of the volcanoes on the weather was probably so severe that glaciers that are now thought to take hundreds of thousands of years to grow, I believe, could have formed in a matter of years. In addition, there were probably periods when the glaciers receded before expanding again. This idea of having the same glacier expand and receded rather than to have completely separate ice ages, as suggested by Evolutionists, would also allow the process to occur much faster.
American examples of animals that must have been living after the flood in the ice age are the: Mammoths, Saber tooth Tigers, and the American 3 toed sloth. All are found in high numbers in the quaternary layers.
In the lower layers of the geologic column, specific formations (specific layers) encompass large areas of the globe (thousands of miles). These wide ranging formations are easily identified as being flood deposits since they cover areas much larger than would be produced by present day conditions. In addition, the layers are flat, showing little or no erosion, which is totally different than what we find on the Earth today. Only the kind of bends and breaks that would be expected as uplifts and faults exert pressure on the layers. As we look higher and higher in the column, the area that specific formations cover is less and less. By the time we start looking at Quaternary layers (the very top portion of the geologic column) specific formations are very small in their expanse. These top layers are even found within the confines of the hills and mountains found in the world today. There is an obvious trend where the harsh conditions are decreasing and the distance that earth is transported over the earth is lessening. It only makes sense to identify the top layers, which are located totally within small valley regions, as post flood.
Possibly the ending of the flood was not a sudden thing but a slow decline of activity producing localized flood conditions over many years after the world wide flood. In this scenario, we would expect the storm activity to lessen as time progresses. So there can be found fossils in the extreme upper portion of the Geologic column which would not be classified as being laid down by the flood. However, if we choose to have a model where the water activity slowly departed from the earth, we could possibly have a situation where the animals have left the Ark and dispersed around the world, only to have randomize killing of individuals by processes that have not completely been abated.
What about the beginning of the flood? Is the first presence of fossils in the Cambrian a good tool in determining where the flood destruction starts?
If the world before the flood was a created place; then we might expect that the original world was a designed work of art. A place engineered for the habitation of man and other life-forms. If the world was indeed a designed place, it would be a place that geologists might not be able to say anything about since the world had not been formed by any process that a geologist knows about.
In today's world, buildings are designed for people. Yet in any building, there are rooms that are not designed for human habitation. These rooms might include: electrical rooms, rooms containing heating, air handling, air-conditioning, etc. The more complicated a building, the more room needed for the various functions of the building itself. In tall skyscrapers, there are even rooms containing weights for the purpose of counterbalancing the swaying of the building. These rooms are usually void of people.
I believe that the original created world also would have had places for the maintenance of the environment of the world. The Bible says it never rained. If it never rained, how did all the world get watered? There must have been a system of underground waterways and reservoirs that controlled the distribution of water on the earth. What was it that powered this movement of water throughout the world? Could there have been places where the heat in the center of the earth served as the source of energy?
If there were large underground chambers that served various functions; then, we might expect to see those areas destroyed first before the other regions, that contain living creatures, are destroyed.
Below the Cambrian (the layer where the first fossils are located) is the Precambrian. Most of the Precambrian is composed of amorphous rock. It isn't composed of any layers. It is essentially below the layers of the geologic column and would not be classified by anyone as flood deposits. However the upper portion of the Precambrian does have layers like the Cambrian above it in some places. The only difference is that it contains no fossils. Another difference is the evidence of heating. It looks like some or all of the layered Precambrian shows evidence of being cooked with high levels of heat. If there were microfossils in these layers they could have been destroyed by the high temperatures.
Most creationist would classify the layered Precambrian layers as being preflood because of the absence of any fossil. I question this position because we know so little or nothing at all about the original created world. We assume that all portions of the original world was inhabited by life-forms of various kinds. I think there is a good possibility that the various layers of the upper Precambrian was also produced by the flood as described in Genesis.
Another source of evidence that suggests possible flood involvement of the Precambrian is found in Arthur V. Chadwick's Paleocurrent data.
He has taken a large sum of measurements from sites throughout the world and put them together in a very large single data base. Paleocurrent data is the recording of the direction of wind or water when a fossil animal, tree, or sediment is buried. If all the trees were knocked down in the same direction, the orientation of the trees would indicate the direction that the water was moving when it hit that site. There are all sorts of things that geologists use to identify the direction of the wind or water in the various layers.
What evolutionist expect to find is white noise. Wind and water coming from different directions in different areas at different times. That would make sense. If we are in a valley, would we expect the water to go down the valley? Yes. The paleocurrent would reflect where a specimen was in a drainage pattern of the valley. Also different specimens might be in different valleys or on different sides of valleys.
If evolution is correct, or if the flood is only recorded as a small portion of the geologic column, we would expect the paleocurrent data of any fossil site to reflect where they were in a valley and what the direction of the wind and/or water was. In addition, since the wind changes at various times, we would expect over time that all sorts of directions would be recorded.
What Dr. Chadwick has found is that for much of the geologic column the paleocurrent direction in the US points in the same direction. Amazing! There is no white noise! The paleocurrent data indicates that the currents were all going in much the same direction throughout the US.
That suggests to me that there were currents moving in an unrestricted manner flowing around the entire globe of the Earth! At least that is what his research shows so far. Most of his data comes from the US and Canada. He is collecting more and more data from the other continents as well. His data is even suggesting how the continents might have been oriented at the various times in the flood. Interesting stuff!
The Paleocurrent data indicates that when the Cambrian was laid down, that there already was a world-wide current direction. Instead of having currents which are dependent upon the topography of individual valleys, there are definite world-wide currents. To make it clear, The water was moving in the same direction all the way around the world. The current actually circumvented the entire globe.
What might we expect to occur during the course of the world-wide flood described in Genesis?
In the beginning of the flood, we might expect to see a local distribution of flood damage. Currents would exhibit a local valley pattern. Water would flow down in local valleys before the water could rise high enough to allow a world-wide distribution of mud and water. Only when the water gets sufficiently high enough to go over mountains and ridges would there be a world-wide flow pattern of the water. Any layer within the Geologic column with world-wide current patterns should be considered mid-flood. At least it is not the start! Only when the water would subside sufficiently at the end of the flood, would there again be localized current patterns again.
Is that what we see in Art's Paleocurrent data? No, from the very beginning, if we exclude the Precambrian, there are layers with a world-wide direction of current. It should be clear that the Cambrian should not be considered to be the beginning of the flood. Either the beginnings of the flood is entirely destroyed by later activities of the flood and their is nothing left, or, just maybe, the Precambrian may represent some early activity of the flood.
Where is the material that was laid down in the beginning moments of the flood? Is all evidence of the early flood destroyed by later actions of the same flood?
The Paleocurrent data in the Precambrian reveals a localized current pattern reminiscent of local valley distributions. If the layered region of upper Precambrian represents the beginning of the flood where unpopulated regions of the world (below the surface of the Earth) are being inundated by the flood, we would expect to see localized patterns in water currents, exactly what is present. We would not expect to see a world-wide pattern exhibited in the destruction of the underground chambers, nor would we expect to find a great preponderance of fossils either.
The following link is a listing of various Global Catastrophic Models. Two of them "Paleocurrents and Global Flood Model" and "A Global Catastrophic Model" are proposed by Arthur V. Chadwick utilizing his Paleocurrent data.
One thing that demands to be answered in any flood model is this: When a whole world is covered with water. Where does the water go when the flood ends? In a local flood, the rain eventually stops, the water eventually goes down the river, and what remains eventually dries up. Where is the water going to go from a flood that covers the whole surface of the world? There is no place for the water to go. Also, we need to consider where the moisture of the dried up water is going.
I think that God created today's ocean floor basins for the very purpose of taking up the water that was over the land. Only when the water was able to cascade into the deep basins was the land able to begin the drying process. In the process of cascading into the basins, water created large and expansive deep chasms and expansive alluvial fans. Most rivers have a flood plain which allows for much more water (rain water) than now currently exists in the rivers.
An interesting aspect of ocean floors is the lack of older sediments. It looks like the oceans we have today are a new phenomena. One possibility that would explain the lack of older sediments is that the older sediments have been completely subducted back into the magma. The ocean then would not be new, only that the original ocean floor has been replaced by newer material. Magma subduction then would explain the lack of older sediments but would not explain where the water would go after a world-wide flood. There are also problems concerning the amount of heat that would be produced if the ocean floor was completely subducted within the short time period described in the Bible.
We need newly formed ocean beds in order to allow the water to run off the land. One model that has a small following among evolutionists is the Expanding Earth Model. Most who like the expanding earth Model see that the standard plate-tectonics model does not explain all the data. The floating continents do not fit together optimally unless the circumference of the earth is reduced. With a smaller Earth, the fitting together of the continents are more precise. The following links explain the model more fully.
I think an expanding Earth model should be explored by creationist.
I think that the Expanding Earth Model fits well with the Global Flood Model. It provides a place for the water to drain into during the last stages of the flood. It also explains why only recent sedimentation is found in the ocean floors. In addition it also allows for a better fit of the continents. Finally, the thermal problems associated with a quick subduction are averted.
If this model is correct, it probably would have taken a deliberate command from God for it to have taken place. The one objection that the scientific community has against an expanding Earth is a simple one. Where did the matter come from to allow the Earth to expand? That I do not have an answer for, except that it could have been done by God Himself.
One of the most puzzling phenomena to study are the Magnetic Field reversals of the Earth. Apparently the North and South Poles of the Earth have switched back and forth quite a few times. The problem for the Creationist's viewpoint was that it was thought to take thousands of years for a single reversal to take place. Yet there are thousands of reversals recorded in the rock.
A good example of where to find the evidence of this process is the dividing centers in the center of oceans. On either side of the expanding center can be traced one reversal after another. How is all this going to fit within the time of the flood or even 6000 years of a Biblical chronology?
In the April 22, 1995 issue of Science News, there is an interesting article by R. Monastersky, Earth's Magnetic Field Follies Revealed. In the article, Robert S. Coe of the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Michel Prevot and Pierre Camps of the University of Montpellier in France, have discovered ancient lava flows in Oregon that show a change in the Magnetic field while it is flowing.
In fact, over an 8-day period, the Earth's magnetic field moved 6 degrees a day. This is 1000 times faster that what is thought to occur in today's world. So it looks like magnetic changes can occur much faster than was thought by most. In fact statements like: "these results are almost inconceivable" says Paul H. Roberts of U. of Calif., Los Angeles. Also: "It's a problem. We're talking about something that happens in weeks and that shows the core to be violently active in terms of the magnetic field," says Kenneth A. Hoffman of Calif. Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo.
Another interesting article in Science News March 8, 1997, in the Research Notes under Earth Science is the note, Earth's pole is a pushover for quakes again by R. Monastersky on page 148. The article suggests that "earthquakes are changing Earth's physical balance by gently nudging the North Pole. . ."
If earthquakes tend to affect the Earth's magnetic field, what would happen if multitudes of rocks and comets from space where striking our planet? (See My Astronomy Page) What would happen if the ocean basins opened up rapidly in a short period of time to dry off the land, as in the drying of the flood? Would we expect the Earth's magnetic field to be unstable? In think so. I think it possible that the field might change much faster than the 6 degrees per day that is suggested by those looking at the ancient lava flows in Oregon.
It does look like it is possible to suggest that dramatic magnetic reversals could have happened repeatedly and quite rapidly during the violent processes that occurred during the global flood.
Origins: Linking Science and Scripture by Ariel A. Roth Published 1998 by Review and Herald Publishing Association
Faith, Reason, and Earth History: A Paradigm of Earth and Biological Origins by Intelligent Design by Leonard Brand Published 1997 by Andrews University Press Berrien Springs, Michigan.
Biology and Origins
Astronomy and Origins