Archeological/Geological Response to Atheist Part 1 of 5

The list that follows is copied and pasted from a comment in a small debate with an atheist. Though science wasn’t the original topic of the feed, rather it was the hopelessness of atheism, this list was presented as a sound refutation of why creation and the flood couldn’t possibly be realities.  I thought rather than get into a tit-for-tat debate in someone else’s comment feed, which tends to by highly unfruitful, I would address the list here. Less emotion, less noise, and a teachable moment for anyone following, that much of the criticisms fired at Christianity are not proofs against it, but are assertions based on the presupposition that their world view is correct, i.e. “there is no God”.  In this way, maybe bible believing Christians can be edified by knowing that regardless of the other side’s presumption, there has historically been great reason to hold fast to the truth of the word. Since “there is no God” must be true for an atheist, everything they observe in nature must not support the bible, or the biblical world view, but only materialism, which means an evolutionary explanation. Out of respect for the atheist and his list, I would state that I am not implying his list was exhaustive, and I am quite sure there is a rebuttal for each comment made. The point here is to realize evidence must be interpreted based on world view.

Admittedly, I have similar biases, for all that I see in nature screams loudly that there is in fact a God, and that the Bible’s history is accurate down to minute detail. I am a firm believer that people are saved through the hearing of the gospel, and the Holy Spirit moving in or softening their hearts. But this doesn’t exclude facts, logic or reason. How could it if God is the creator of our organized reality? My faith in God and His word is the filter through which I see the observable world. One thing biblicists will admit, and which is an obvious truth, is that “scientists don’t say anything – scientists do.” What we then observe, based on presupposition,  is our interpretation of hard facts. Let’s explore!

I’ll put atheist comments in Green, and my responses in Black:

Here’s a very incomplete list of things that cannot be explained by your flood or fit into the young earth creationist’s timeline:

Varves, the Green River Formation,

What the heck are varves?! Varves are sedimentary rock formations, ripples, or laminae that are thought to be annual deposits. At the Green River, geologists can see millions of these varves, and it is often pointed to in much of evolutionary literature as proof the world is very old. When clinging to the presupposition of uniformitarian thinking, an evolutionist would certainly try to claim these must be annual. The truth is, in field observations and in labs, varves have been seen to form very quickly, especially in storms and unusual conditions (aka. a global deluge). In many observations, multiple ridges form instantaneously! Plus at Green River, we find a great many perfectly fossilized fish with great detail preserved in the varves, down to the eyeballs, scales and the like. More than even this, we find a great many fossils there from different ecosystems; plants, and birds (shore birds all the way to forest birds all in the same formation). We know, again from observation that fish rot and are consumed by nature quickly upon death. If we cling to the millions of years to form the Green River Formation theory, we must try to explain how these fish didn’t rot long enough over the millions of years, to form such detailed fossil samples, or why there are fossils at all. Using common sense, I believe we can safely deduce a great catastrophic event not only caused these sedimentary rock formations, but also buried life from a wide area in this one place. Most geologists don’t cling to the idea that each varve equals 1 year.

ice cores,

This theory of annual ice rings has been smacked down like a jump shot defended against by Lebron James. The best and most obvious example is the famous lost squadron. It is worth researching yourself and is a fascinating tale, but to make a long story short – A WWII squadron was lost in 1942 over Greenland. These planes were recovered in 1988, only 46 years later. Due to the shifting in ice, and to the great surprise of the search teams, the squadron was finally located 250 feet down below the surface, and through hundreds and hundreds of ice rings in the mere 46 years. Rings are formed during hot and cold, and are not a product of deep time.

the sheer amount of buried biomass,

This argument is unfortunately due to ignorance of the creation model. Creationists do not have issue  with the huge amount of biomass (oils, coals, natural gases) found in the earth’s crust, but evolutionists think we do. This is because there is great misunderstanding as to what the pre-flood world looked like. Again, blinded by the present-being-the-key-to-the-past assumption (an unscientific one), if one imagines all the organic material on the earth today being used to form coal, we would fall desperately short of what is in the earth’s crust currently.  And that would of course be correct. The problem is evolutionists assume the present land area of the earth is the analogous to the creation model’s pre-flood world. They assume every and all creationists believe in a Pangaea arrangement of continents, and that, like today’s world, the earth back then was only habitable on about 3% of its surface area. But God’s word clearly teaches that not only was the original design supposed to be conducive for man to spread out and subdue it, as well as enjoy its bounty and ability to provide longevity, but also that the post-flood world dramatically changed the earth, as evidenced by plummeting ages, fossil records, and plant material even under the icecaps. In a proper understanding of the pre-flood world, one that fits with the evidence, we would have a surface covered with land, springs underneath (as described in the Garden of Eden [different hydrological cycle], and plentiful biomass, which easily explains the amount of coal and oil in the earth’s crust without resorting to billions of years of assumption. Imagine a world where 65% of the earth is habitable?  With better growing conditions, denser atmosphere, and higher magnetism, we have the potential for a great amount of biomass, much of which would have been buried in the earth’s crust quickly. In other words, this criticism of the bible is based on assumption, an observation of what we see today pushed through the filter of an evolutionary world view. Biomass does not pose a problem to the creation model at all.

ocean sediments,

A surprising factor for an atheist to present in my opinion. Ocean sediment is a factor that fits much more comfortably in the creationist model. Here is what we observe:  Water and wind erode 24 billion tons per year. The sea floor should be choked, but average height of sea floor sediment is only 1300 ft
Therefore the limit based on current erosion rates is 12 million years (much shorter when catastrophic events are factored in) not in the billions.
North America should have been leveled in 10 million years if erosion has continued at the average rate. Mathmatically, and again based on observation, a height of 150 kilometers (93 miles) of continent would have eroded in 2.5 billion years
crumble the concept of ancient mountains. Now of course the evolutionist will counter by saying uplift replaces that which is eroded. But if this were true, uplift from the earth’s crust would not carry with it fossils, or sedimentary rock layers. Therefore after 10 million years, we should no longer find these “old” rock layers on any of the earth’s continents, especially the fossils we find in mountainous regions.

river deltas,

Again, a surprising factor to be presented. River deltas are the fanned out erosion formations at a river’s termination point. The flood accounts for a wide variety of erosion rates, depending on the type of rock and mud in an area, and current river flow in the last 4500 years, but more importantly, the river deltas we do see should be way larger than current sizes if the world was millions of years old. This is another limiting factor. The most striking example of this is the Grand Canyon, a huge evidence for a global catastrophe. This giant spillway has left relatively no river delta from the over 1000 cubic miles of earth that has been removed. If this is slow time, the base of the Colorado River should be the most epic river delta the world has ever known. It is simply not there. The rock and mud has been washed out of this enormous spillway, leaving a great many evidences of catastrophe.

caves, coral reefs,

I am not sure how to address “caves”, as they typically do not present a geological conundrum for creationists. Regarding reefs though, we can look at The Great Barrier Reef, which is dated by greatadventures.com to be 18 million years old. Livescience has it at both 500,000 years old, and 8000 years old. News.com.au has a writer who says it’s 25 million. Now, we could get in to the weeds on this topic, but for the sake of brevity, science has observed its growth patterns, which vary widely, depending greatly on how much fresh water runoff there is from the continent. There are of course, newer and older segments of it, and where it is thickest, The Great Barrier Reef reaches a thickness of 55 meters! Now, growth of coral has been clocked at 5 mm per year and at 25 mm per year, with an average rate of approximately 15 mm. This means that despite its vast size and impressiveness, the reef in its entirety could have been formed in only 3700 years.  The new parts being clocked now, are only about 660 years old. This is not a factor that is a friend of evolutionists.

fossilized forests,

Like a broken record, I question the wisdom of using this factor as anything but proof for a world wide deluge. The obvious response is to point out the many polystrate fossils, or trees that pass through more than one geological layer. Some of these pass through rock, then coal, then rock again, and still others are fossilized upside down, clearly pointing to catastrophism. The obvious question would be, how does one imagine a tree standing upside down for millions of years so that sediment can slowly cover it? If the evolutionist asserts that fossilization of these forests must have happened slowly, I would suggest examining the quick and complete fossilization of many modern objects, such as hats, boots and pickle jars, which would shed  light on it. Plus, again via observation, I would suggest examining the fallen trees of today on a hike or some such thing – take a second grader, not an evolutionary scientist. You will most likely get better observations. (I kid). Then examine these fallen trees, rotting, full of mushrooms and fungus, brittle and decomposing, and try to imagine how given enough time, they might slowly become fossilized. You can do this observation experiment with many fossils. Then see if God’s explanation, or man’s seems like truth to you.

 

To be continued in Part 2

 

 

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Author: J.R. Cooper

Author, Christian Fiction, Apologetics, Creationism vs Evolution, Published with Touch Publishing

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