The popular humorist Mark Twain once wrote, “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”
When it comes to creation, and the age of the earth, it’s time to reflect on the majority cultural opinion. Not only is the creation viewpoint in the minority, it has been effectively erased from the public square. Biology textbooks have removed references to a young earth or creation; the mainstream world has completely embraced the theory of evolution.
But as Christians, we know that the majority opinion of culture is not the standard for morality or truth— God’s Word is.
Even if the only evidence we had for creation were passages in Scripture, shouldn’t that be sufficient? When human understanding and God’s revealed Word differ, I choose to take God’s Word over man’s word every single time.
But let me encourage you: the creation worldview is not blindly following God in spite of the evidence. The evidence for creation is quite literally carved into the foundation of the earth.
The key question evolutionists ask as they try to discredit the biblical account of creation is simply this: “If the earth is so young, why does it look so old?”
While that sounds like a solid question, it assumes another theory called “uniformitarianism.” This long word essentially means that different measurements for determining age are consistent over long periods of time, say, billions of years! In other words, methods like carbon dating depend on the assumption that carbon increases or decreases at exactly the same rate every year.
Scientists use uniformitarianism to measure fossils and rocks through this process called carbon dating; they also use it to measure the rate of water erosion of rocks. For instance, the normal rate of water erosion causes them to assume it took six million years for the Colorado River to carve out the Grand Canyon.
As Christians, it’s helpful to understand some very simple answers to these evolutionary assumptions. This will help you answer the tough questions your children bring home from school, and not so quickly believe the latest television documentary that constantly refers to “billions of years ago…”
Answer #1: God created a fully mature earth.
When God made Adam and Eve, He didn’t create embryos, or infants, but fully developed human beings. When God fashioned Eve from Adam’s rib and presented her to him, Adam didn’t ask how to feed a newborn baby. No, he knew that she was his wife—a fully matured woman.
Just as God created humans as grown-ups, so He created the rest of the animals, plants, and the universe at large. When God made the sun and stars on day four, their light immediately reached earth, no matter how many lightyears away they were. Rather than begin as infant stars, needing years for their light to travel far enough to reach earth, He created their starlight to immediately reach earth.
Similarly, God didn’t make plants and trees on day five as seeds or acorns, but fully formed plants and apple trees. In fact, if the Lord had created seeds instead of fruit-bearing trees, Adam, and Eve, and all the animals would have starved long before anything bore fruit. God clearly tells us in Genesis 1:12 that He created “fruit trees bearing fruit.” God created trees and plants offering mature, ripe vegetation immediately.
On day six, when God created Adam and Eve, they looked very different than you did on your first birthday. The universe and planet earth, and all it contained, were created immediately functioning, in order to sustain life.
The mainstream scientific process to date the earth assumes the earth started as an infant planet and developed and decayed at a standard rate. But if the earth originated as a mature planet, uniformitarianism would fail to accurately date the earth.
Answer #2: Uniformitarianism cannot account for natural disasters.
One of the sharpest rebukes of the evolutionary theory came as scientists researched the eruption of Mount Saint Helens in Washington. The catastrophic volcanic eruption devastated 230 square miles of forest with a blast the size of several nuclear bombs.
It instantaneously carved out canyons, gullies, and lakes in the surrounding area. Only five years after the eruption, scientists discovered a layer of coal formation in the bottom of Spirit Lake more than 3 feet deep. The uniformitarian view was that it took 1,000 years to form a single inch of coal, but the volcanic eruption created 3 feet in less than than five years!
In other words, a volcanic eruption and the mass of trees, heat, lava, and pressure in nearby Spirit Lake created conditions that accelerated the typical method of dating the earth.
The evolutionary theory was even further repudiated by an attempt to date rock samples from the eruption. Using the widely-accepted radioactive dating method, the rock samples should’ve been 350,000 years old, but they had been formed in the eruption just five years earlier!
But it happened again, a second eruption of Mount Saint Helens in 1982 created another marvel; a mudslide that carved a canyon one-fortieth the size of the Grand Canyon. Based on the scientifically accepted rate of erosion for the Grand Canyon, the “Little Grand Canyon of Mount Saint Helens” should have taken 150,000 years to erode; instead, it happened in just a few short months!
All these numbers are making me dizzy; what do they ultimately mean for believers? Two volcanic eruptions over the course of two years created an effect on the earth that should have taken hundreds of thousands, even millions of years to be caused.
And if all that could happen with just a couple volcanos, imagine the seismic changes to the earth that could have come from a global flood. The Bible describes the explosion of the flood with these words:
“All the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened. And rain fell upon the earth forty days and forty nights” (Genesis 7:11-12).
Here was a flood in which God released every underwater reservoir and with volcanic explosions, it all erupted simultaneously, while rain poured from above for 960 consecutive hours!
Imagine the devastation; imagine the rapid rate of erosion, sediment layering, and coal formation. The uniformitarian viewpoint cannot account for even local or regional natural disasters, like hurricanes, floods, or tornados, let alone a global flood on the scale of Genesis chapter 7.
Beloved, you have every reason to be confident in the biblical account in Genesis 1-11. God’s record of origins isn’t impossible; it isn’t unscientific; it isn’t blind faith in the Bible. It is the eyewitness account of our Creator God, verified by the old look of a very young earth. The Grand Canyon isn’t evidence of six million years of slow erosion; it is evidence of a rushing torrent in a global flood.
Let me offer one more example from Mount Saint Helens.
A man named Harry lived a mile from the volcano before it erupted. In the hours before, he was warned repeatedly to evacuate—but Harry ignored the warnings and ended up being buried alive by an avalanche of volcanic debris.
Just as Harry ignored the warning, so did the people in Noah's day who refused the shelter of the ark. Our world today is ignoring the safety of the Ark—Jesus Christ—and they blindly follow the scientific mainstream that rejects the Creator and the evidence of His work.
God is the only shelter who can save them, and we have the truth! So, let’s warn them. There’s another judgment coming—the apostle Peter writes—and this future, final judgment will be of fire. The only way to escape is to find refuge in the Person of Jesus Christ, our Lord.