When I was in first grade there was a special day that I'll never forget. All classes in school were canceled and I can remember sitting on the gymnasium floor with my first grade friends, glued to the TV as John Glenn orbited around the world. We stayed there all day except for several recess periods. I was enamored with space flight even before, but that experience captured my imagination.
From that point forward, I payed special attention every time a new mission went into space. I can remember, when project Gemini began, they started having several flights a year. I can remember looking forward to each flight. Later on, as a ham radio operator, I was able to listen to the conversations and mission control around the clock. This was made possible because various amateur radio operators got permission from the FCC to rebroadcast the feed from JPL. So, I was no longer limited to the poor news coverage of the flights.
When Apollo finally started becoming active after its initial problems, I was again excited about space flight. When Apollo 8 left Earth orbit, it completely boggled my mind. To think that people were now actually leaving earth orbit and going out into deep space. To me at the time it seemed like a very scary thing to do. These experiences have helped to shape my thinking throughout life. Everything from Astronomy and even Hewlett-Packard (HP) calculators drew my attention because of the space effort.
There is something about the unknown outer reaches of space that seems to captivate me. I felt sure that one day I would myself go into orbit and perhaps beyond. Today I'm limited to piloting an airplane in our own atmosphere and wondering what is really out there; but, one day when Jesus comes in the clouds of heaven, it is then that I will finally experience the wonder of the Universe.
Another area that I am extremely interested in is origins. Since I believe in the Genesis story I have naturally wondered about our Solar System. Many Christians believe that the Genesis story describes everything in the Universe as being created on day 1 of Creation week. On careful reading of the Bible, I don't think it explains much about our solar system or the Universe. In the following verses of Genesis we read: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.Genesis 1:1-2
I can see at least two ways to translate "The Earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep." One way is to say that something was here but formless or unorganized, the other way is to say that nothing was here. God either in His creating, organized what was here in addition to creating matter, or He created everything out of nothing. The text is not clear.
From reading the following verses we can understand that when God creates things, He does not have to create something from nothing. The word, "create", can be used when preexisting matter is present: And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. Genesis 1:26-27 We see that God created man, both the words "create" and "made" are used, yet in the following verse we see that God made man using previously created matter: And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.Genesis 2:7
Coming back to the phrase "without form, and void", there is a second verse in the Old Testament that contains this same phrase: I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. Jeremiah 4:23-24. This verse is speaking of some time in the future when the mountains will tremble and all the hills will move lightly. The meaning of the phrase we are looking at is very clear. It means that conditions on the Earth is completely unorganized. Earlier in the text, in Jeremiah 4:20, it speaks of destruction upon destruction resulting in all the land being spoiled. So we seem to be looking at the Earth after some great calamity has occurred.
It should be clear that if without form, and void has the same meaning in both text, than we would be able to safely understand Genesis 1:1-2 to mean that the original Earth was an unorganized mass of material when God began to create."
The following text can either be thought of as general statements concerning Creation week, or as general statements concerning all the things He has ever created:
By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. For he spake, and it was [done]; he commanded, and it stood fast. Psalms 33:6, 9.
Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. Hebrews 11:3.
We also know from Christ's life here on Earth that He did do things by the word of His mouth. So the generalized statements concerning the creation of the Universe must also be true. All things were made by Him and that God also creates things by the word of His mouth. The creation of man and the original creation of our world could be exceptions to the rule and that's why they were mentioned.
Yet I do have many questions concerning Creation week. If the sun was made on day four, then why was there water and not ice in Genesis 1:2? Also, if there was something here before creation week, did it revolve around a pre-sun? We are told that there was light without the sun in the first few days of Creation week. Of course we could assume that it is the light from God Himself that lighted the Earth, also we can assume that God allowed conditions to be that water would be present and not ice, but of course we have to assume this, we are not told.
There are just too many questions that are left unanswered. So I generally leave our solar system in it's pre-creation-week state alone. One day soon, I along with many others will be able ask God Himself how and when He created our world, our solar system, the Milky way galaxy, and all the other fascinating objects in space. For a more complete discussion of the Origin of the Solar System at or before Creation week, see: (Origin of Both Extinct Nuclides and U238 and U235 Nuclides)
One thing that has always puzzled me. If God created a world without fault, designed to last forever, at least for a very long time; Why would He make this world in such an unstable solar system? All life, as we know it on Earth today, could be wiped out by a single large "rock" striking the planet. It does not seem possible that if there is an all knowing God that He would do something like that.
I am not disturbed that the solar system is unstable today because I can assume that we not only live in a sin filled world but that there is an area in space, possibly our Solar System, that has been affected by sin. The question is, what could the Solar System have been like originally?
I would like to give an alternate view that might explain why our local solar system is presently unstable.
God would not make a planet such as the Earth in it's original Eden condition to be placed in an unstable solar system. The solar system originally must have been orderly and stable to preserve what was made.
The stratigraphic column of the Earth from Cambrian (possibly the late stratified Precambrian) to possibly the Tertiary Period was laid down in a very short period of time, possibly about a year.
NOTE: the extent of the geologic column that the flood produced is often argued among Creationists. The above range is not hard and fast.
Since most of the Bolides (Rocks that strike the Earth) that have struck our planet are found within the time frame of the geologic column, we could postulate that they all struck the Earth within the very short period of time of the flood, possibly within a year.
It is entirely possible that the Bolides could have even caused the global flood to occur.
NASA has done studies on the distribution of craters and they have determined that the concentration of craters is fairly constant throughout our Solar System, Hence, they conclude that the source of the projectiles come from outside our Solar System. This crater producing phenomena is Solar System wide.
The Earth has been struck many times in the past by rocks from space (Bolides). I've seen maps showing the known sites where they struck. There are over two hundred known with most likely a much larger set of still unknown sites. Most of the sites can be placed (dated) and located within the geologic column. On the Moon and other moons, and some planets, we see a surface that is literally inundated with craters; A much higher concentration than we can begin to find on the earth. Probably most of the craters on the Earth were destroyed during the processes of the flood. An example would be that of an asteroid landing on the flood-waters themselves. There would be no evidence of what happened. It is only the larger strikes that leave some evidence and also the presence of Iridium that indicates the presence of asteroids.
If we could say that most or all of the geologic column was laid down in a very short period of time during the flood, we would be able to say that most of the craters on Earth were produced within that same short time frame of approximately one year. Most postulate that the rate at which our Solar System has been pelted by rocks and other projectiles, has been fairly constant. But of course the model I am presenting, does not see a uniform process at all. Instead, God is seen as taking matters into His own hands and making a change in the Solar System. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if we found out that there was a large cloud of projectiles that went through our Solar System during the flood. God could have specifically caused our Solar System to be inundated with projectiles for the very purpose of causing the flood.
NASA has taken a lot of pictures of our Solar System and they have come to the conclusion that the concentration of craters is fairly constant in our Solar System. Accounting for the presence of an atmosphere on some of the planets, etc., they have calculated that the concentration of craters is roughly the same on all the planets and moons in the Solar System. (Remember, some planets and moons seem to record strikes much better than others.) This data suggests that the projectiles came from outside our Solar System. If the Asteroid Belt, for example, was the source of craters in our Solar System, we would expect a higher concentration of strikes the closer a planet is to the belt.
Since we see evidence within the Creation paradigm that the earth was struck many times within a short period of time, we might wonder if this "shower of rocks" could have affected the rest of the Solar System. It is my view that the majority of the craters on the Earth as well as the other planets and moons in our Solar System could have been produced by a single event, a possible shower of rocks that went through our Solar System during the course of a single earth year.
We now have a scenario that can explain how our solar system could have been changed from an orderly and self-adjusting system to an unstable system where pieces of our own Solar System often bang into each other. Presently we are looking with certainty that something will eventually strike the Earth if time lasts long enough. Even now there are many near-misses of large bodies just missing us. Each time, because of a focusing phenomena, the near-misses will get closer until we are struck. (From an evolutionary context, a strike from a large rock will completely annihilate the life on our planet.)
It is amazing to realize that the possible action causing the flood years ago could also have started a series of reactions in the Solar System making it unstable and eventually resulting in the destruction of our world in the last days. The possibility exists that man's influence in the solar system had expanded beyond the confines of the Earth, so it was necessary for God to destroy man throughout the Solar System. Another possibility was that God set in motion by affecting not only the Earth but the workings of the whole Solar System to set in motion the destruction of man at the end of time.
The spacing of the planets in our Solar System has always amazed me. Only Pluto, which is completely irregular, and the space between Mars and Jupiter, where the asteroid belt, are anomalies. It appears that Pluto is a captured body. It also appears that the asteroid belt is the remains of a planet that must have originally been located between Mars and Jupiter. In fact there is a space for a planet at that location as indicated by the even spacing of the planets. Possibly the planet was destroyed in the same cloud (shower of rocks) that caused the flood on our world. Possibly the projectile was so large that the Roaches' Limit was reached.
One hundred years ago and before, everyone saw a missing spot for a planet between Mars and Jupiter. In the place where a planet should be, an asteroid belt exists. The planets are arranged in so orderly a manner that it was hard for anyone not to see that a planet was indeed missing. Since that time, evolution has taken over Biology and also Astronomy. No longer was there any room in scientific theories for a created Universe having inherent design. A new series of evolutionary models for the origin of our Solar System became extremely popular. This is where we are today. Almost no professional scientist in Astronomy regards any model of our Solar System or the Universe from a Biblical basis. Other models not having the evolutional philosophy as its basis is not even considered. In fact they are even ignored.
Creationists are not the only ones to be singled out by mainstream scientists as a group who's research is not to be regarded. Positions held that are contrary to mainstream viewpoints are often ignored or even severely criticized.
Those at Metaresearch see reason for resurrecting the idea that a large planet was destroyed recently producing the present day asteroid belt and the group of comets that circle around our sun. Their research suggests that both comets and asteroids were produced at the same time by the same event in the recent past, circa 3 million years ago.
There is an obvious time discrepancy; But, the Metaresearch people have a model very close to what I envision. Remember, Astronomy is not my field, I'm just talking about possibilities.
One exciting addition to their research is that I have a mechanism for allowing the planet to blow up. Remember, NASA has determined that the distribution of craters is approximately the same throughout our Solar System. This indicates that the projectiles came from outside our Solar System. The now missing planet must have been hit by an object so large that it exploded. Apparently the Roaches Limit was reached in the collision. Also the possibility exists that the planet exploded at the same time all the other planets and moons were just scarred. There is at least one moon around one of the outer planets that was either hit with a projectile, or it was approached by a large body that was so large that the Roaches Limit was almost reached. It looks like the moon fell apart then came back together in a jumble of pieces.
Just with the absence of asteroids and comets, our solar system would have been much more stable than today's solar system. This is what would be needed to ensure a long life for the created world called Earth.
Speaking about projectiles hitting planets, an interesting example of such occurred a few years ago. A comet sometime back strayed too close to Jupiter and was trapped in an unstable orbit around the planet. It was in 1992, that the comet got too close to the planet and the gravity of Jupiter's huge mass tore the comet into at least 20 large pieces.
The 20 chunks lined up like a string so that when the comet again came close to the planet, the next pass, the fragments ran into the planet one by one over a six day period. What happened was that a line of dark welts were produced on the planet. Below is a graphic of Jupiter looking at it in specific frequencies in the infrared range (heat range). In the graphic, the dark welts look like bright yellow spots near the bottom of the planet.
(At no time should anyone consider that the W. M. Keck Observatory in Mauna Kea, Hawaii, who provided the pictures below, agrees with any of the conclusions stated on this web page. The conclusions are my own, the author of this web page.)
Most have felt that there is almost no chance of finding strings of craters on the Earth, since the Earth's gravity is not considered strong enough to capture a comet except in very unlikely situations. The probability is thought to be 100,000 times less for the Earth than it is for Jupiter.
In Science News, May 16, 1998 (Vol. 153), Richard Monastersky wrote an interesting article, Target Earth: Geologists link a chain of craters. In the article, we find that various geologists are starting to link some craters together into a mechanism that is very similar to the way Shoemaker-Levy 9 ran into Jupiter.
Three large craters line up when the continents are moved to where they might have been at the time. The age of the three craters are all said to be about the same time although there is some question as to how well they agree.
One of the major problems that this possibility faces is the fact that magnetic studies of the rocks at the different locations, show that the Earth's magnetic field reversed in the time between impacts. In today's scientific world, it is thought that it takes thousands of years for the geomagnetic field to reverse. (If you look at my Geology page near the bottom, you will see evidence that the geomagnetic field could have changed in the past much faster, possibly reversing itself in days or hours.)
In spite of the evidence, there are quite a few skeptics, "who think the alignment of craters may be coincidental. 'They sort of gave the same age, and they sort of line up,'" says Richard Grieve of the Geological Survey of Canada in Ottawa.
This is all very interesting, but not quite as interesting as another example of a chain of craters highlighted in a special topic box on page 313 of the Science News Journal, May 16, 1998 (Vol. 153). A similar map is shown in the graphic below.
We see that there is a sequence of eight crater-like formations running from Kansas through to Illinois. The amazing thing about these formations is the "remarkably straight line" that they form. Two geologists from New York University, Michael R. Rampino and Tyler Volk, had argued that these formations were "all impact craters created at the same time by a string of comets or asteroids".
John Luczaj, however, of Johns Hopkins University, noted the one feature that didn't allow all the formations to be grouped into a single event. They didn't have the same age. Instead they range from 500 million to 100 million years. His point was this: "If multiple impacts formed the line, then they must have identical geologic ages".
So, in order for all these impacts to be part of a single event, they had to be formed at the same time. But traditional dating procedures show that the ages are very different from each other. That's logical. The difference from 100 million years and 500 million years is very large. (See the graphic below showing the traditional geologic time scale. The time or age indicated is in millions of years.) Looking at the chart below, we see that the range of ages that contain fossils is from present to almost 600 million years. So the difference of 100 million and 500 million is almost as great as the whole fossil bearing portion of the geologic column. How could all these impacts be from the same event?
On the other hand, looking at the crater-like line of formations, I can not get past the idea that the structure represented by the lining up of the craters is something special. Are these sites uniquely aligned or is this a miraculous coincidence?
There is the possibility that there are just so many of these things that it would be an easy process to line-up a group of craters. So yes, if these structures are found everywhere on the map, in high numbers, then it might conceivably be an easy job to align a sequence of formations. However, I do not believe that the numbers of these craters is that numerous. The two geologists, Rampino and Volk, had thought that this alinement was something special. They thought it was special enough to risk their reputation on the study even though they themselves knew that the ages were different. Indeed; The only point against their idea was that the age of the craters were very different. However, the uniqueness of the line-up aspect of the craters was not questioned nor was it attacked. So we can safely assume that this set of eight craters is uniquely aligned and that the statistical possibility that the groups could be generated by randomly placed separate events is extremely and exceedingly small.
So, we have a problem. These eight craters are of very different ages. So it is thought that they cannot be of the same event. Yet, the uniqueness of these eight sites lining up the way they do, strongly suggests that they were produced by a single non-random event. How can we solve this problem?
Since these sites are uniquely aligned, we should at least look into the possibility that the sites were produced by a single event and that there is something wrong with the assumptions of the dating process.
There are now two issues that need to be addressed
We have two different conflicting lines of data. Which are we going to assume is correct? The ages are different supporting the idea that they are unrelated, yet there seems to be strong evidence that the structure itself points to the idea that all were created in a single string of events. I.E. It could have resulted from a projectile breaking apart to form a series of projectiles that strike the Earth in sequence producing a straight line of craters on the Earth.
If we assume that the ages are truly different, then we would have to agree with the majority, that the lining up of the eight crater-like structures is purely coincidental.
On the other hand, if we assume that the lining up of these eight crater-like structures is too amazing to ignore, that a non-random organization of the craters do exist, then we would have to assume that the structure itself, merits the idea that it was produced as a single event. We would then have to question the dating process of formations.
Maybe the mechanism as portrayed by comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, isn't as rare as was earlier thought. The unusual conditions for such an event to happen around the Earth, is usually assumed to be extremely unlikely since the gravity field of the Earth is much weaker than that of Jupiter. However, the conditions which are considered to be necessary for such an occurrence to occur, could have been possible or even commonplace during the time of the flood when it is postulated that multitudes of projectiles were probably hitting our planet within a short period of time. Remember, NASA studies indicate that virtually all of the hits that the planets and moons have experienced have been from material coming from outside our solar system. There could have been a high concentration of projectiles. There is a relationship: the higher number of projectiles there are, the higher the probability that this mechanism can occur. Thus the copying of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 example could have been common during certain periods of the flood. There could have been quite a large number of projectiles striking the Earth, possibly starting processes that could have started the flood itself.
The Evolutionary scientists are tending to use the time issue as a reason for ignoring the organization of crater-like structures. It is easy for them to ignore this problem of having a non-random distribution of the craters because their views of the ages of the various stratigraphic layers is firmly held. In fact, if these crater-like structures were actually shown to be from a single non-random even, it would help to topple the entire Evolutionary approach of explaining science! The Evolutionary theory depends upon the standard interpretation of radioisotope dating techniques to support the idea that the various layers of the geologic column was laid down over a very long period of time. If these same layers are now shown to have been formed virtually all at the same time; There would be no long ages at all! There would be no time at all for evolution to occur.
So, evolutionists expect different levels of the Geologic column to have been formed in completely different ages. There is no way for different levels dated to different ages to have been formed simultaneously. On the other hand Creationists see the layers forming in the same order, but occurring throughout the short flood process. Assuming the global flood occurred, it is unlikely to assume that all the points of the world were simultaneously forming the same layers that we today consider having the same age.
Creationary scientists should have a very strong reason for choosing to explore the nature of the time aspect of the formation of the geologic column, and these crater-like structures might be the perfect project to study this possibility.
The age that we measure, in dating fossils and the surrounding medium, might actually be a measure of some other process during the global flood. There must have been some shifting of the nuclides in the flood waters as the layers sequentially were laid down. I don't think we could assume that this process is uniform throughout the whole world, and in fact, because of the organization of this series of crater-like structures, the forming of a chain, we might have reason to suspect that we will not be able to depend on these processes to determine any ordering of events between different sites on the Earth. It may still be true that a proper ordering may still be derived in small regions of the Earth.
We also know that Geologists use the fossil types to correlate the layers of the world together. How do we know if all the same fossil types in the various places of the world were being buried at the same time? It seems that most fossils were transported possibly over long distances. How might that complicate the answer of trying to correlate the different parts of the world together.
In fact it is amazing to me as a non-geologist, to see how little work has been done to actually correlate different parts of the Earth together. Instead, each site is studied independently and the kinds of animals etc. help them determine what layer they are in. I have looked for 3D depictions of large areas only to come up empty. The associations are all assumed as far as I can tell.
Evolutionists assume that it has taken nearly 600 million years for the geological column (above Precambrian) to have formed and of course they feel that they have good evidence for that position. Except, they would probably argue that it is supported by scientific data and is not an assumption.
Their interpretation of the data has led them to believe that life has slowly evolved over long periods of time. So it is natural for them to use key fossils to connect geological features in different portions of the world together. Key fossils, then, are used to identify formations that were all living at the same time.
However I must hasten to point out that their interpretation of the data is based on assumptions that they use in trying to understand their surroundings. Their interpretations are only as good as the assumptions they make.
If, for example, the layers with the fossils were laid down within a year by the actions of the flood, the Evolutionist would never see evidence for it because he or she is not asking the right questions. They are not looking for answers in that direction.
So this problem with having craters of different ages to line up as if they were produced by a single string of events will probably never be solved, because the conflict of design and age cannot be resolved using the standard assumptions that are accepted by the majority of scientists (at least at the present time). A different set of assumptions may make better sense of the data and help resolve the problem.
I see the age problem cropping up on occasion. In the Grand Canyon, last time I visited, there was presently no working model for making the canyon because the exit point for the canyon is younger than the entrance.
To me the Universe has always been a confusing place. If I believe in God, I would naturally associate the Universe as being part of His creation. However, our understanding of the great expanse of space seems to be evolutionary in context. It seems to be extremely violent: The red shift, indicative of the Big Bang; Stars growing old only to blow up (Supernovae), if they are large enough, or to slink away as dwarf star, which collapses because the fuel has been used up.
If the Universe has a definite age, what did God do before that time? Or, if there was a Big Bang, who needs God? Many, unsure what to make of what they see the Universe to be, settle for the Big Bang as the way God did it! Is it?
In addition, strange quasars, which seem to produce enormous bursts of energy, orders of magnitude greater than any sun, seem to exist so far away that our ability to detect where they are is limited. Yet, they release so much energy that they become one of the brightest stars in the sky! On reading the literature, the pulses of a quasar are expressed as gigantic explosions. Is that right?
Is our Universe really that unorderly and unstable (explosive) or are there alternative explanations that can allow us to see things differently? I don't want to suggest the idea that suns and quasars are not extremely powerful sources of energy that would be very dangerous to be in close proximity; However, what I am suggesting is that there is not only a reason for the powerful outbursts of energy we see, but that their may even be a specific purpose for the phenomena we observe. After all, if the Universe is a created place, wouldn't we expect to see structure and purpose in its parts?
Ever since I have seen the evidence for a static universe, I have become aware of the extremely pervasive prejudice that is intertwined in the theories involving our understanding of things in the universe. Every phenomena that is monitored is seen within the context of destructive explosions and limited life spans. Are the body of our theories leading us in the right direction, or is there a more correct way of seeing the body of phenomena we see in the Universe?
Here are a few links that has helped me see new possibilities in the Universe. The realm outside our planet might be a very different place from what we imagine it to be.
Biology and Origins
Geology and the