by Bill Nugent
There’s been a great deal of attention paid to the Ice Age in recent years. There’s been entertaining films for children and documentaries that appeal to students. Additionally, there’s the ongoing scholarly analysis of Ice Age fossils. Mainstream science is in a quandary in trying to explain how the Ice Age occurred. There are literally dozens of climatological models put forward to explain how global climate could switch to bitter cold and then switch back. I’ve read that there are over sixty different explanations by mainstream secular scientists.
If we turn to God’s history book, the Bible, especially the book of Genesis, we will glean important clues about the catastrophe we call the Ice Age. There are many fine Ph. D. scientists who are committed Christians, who believe the Bible and who also study God’s other book, the book of nature. God inspired the Bible. God created nature. Two scientists, whose work I’ll refer to regarding the Ice Age, are Andrew Snelling and Michael Oard.
Snelling and Oard have brilliantly pieced together the evidence to make a solid case that the ice age occurred in the aftermath of the biblical flood of Noah. First, let’s take a look at the Genesis flood. The cause of the flood is clearly stated in Genesis: “all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened. And the rain fell upon the earth for forty days and forty nights” (Genesis 7:11-12 NASB).
Snelling and Oard have written much about the geological evidence that points to massive undersea earthquakes and volcanism that caused huge tidal waves to wash over the continents during the biblical flood. There are vast sedimentary deposits all over the continents, many containing fossils of marine animals such as mollusks, crustaceans and fish. Fossils of ocean fauna occur at high elevations, even in mountainous regions such as the Himalayas.
“All the fountains of the great deep burst open” is the biblical description of the ocean floor being ripped apart. I will show that there is much geological evidence of what Snelling and other creationists call “runaway tectonics.” You may remember from science class that tectonics is the movement of huge plates consisting of the crust of the earth.
Tectonic plates are continental plates and ocean basin plates. The plates are observed to move at a very slow rate nowadays. The ocean basin plates are heavier and subduct (go under) the lighter continental plates and descend into the soft, semi-molten mantle beneath the crust. This causes occasional earthquakes and volcanoes in our own times.
At the time of the Genesis flood, the plates were broken apart rapidly and the oceanic plates subducted quickly under the continents. At the fissures in the center of the ocean, new ocean basin was formed by ascending magma. This rising hot lava caused ocean waters in the area to heat up and evaporate rapidly to form huge rain clouds that poured down rain for forty days and forty nights adding to the flooding caused by the tidal waves. The hot ocean waters probably had the capacity to cause powerful hurricanes with sustained winds over 300 mph and rain falling at a rate of over 20 inches per hour.
There is evidence gathered from the work of mainstream scientists that supports the runaway tectonics model. For instance, in the book titled : “The New Answers Book”, Master Books, 2006, page 196, Snelling cites sources from two mainstream science journals that discuss some of the findings of seismic tomography that give images of the interior of planet earth.
Seismic tomography creates images using recordings of seismic waves. It’s similar to the way a sonogram can produce an image of the interior of a human body. The images reveal that huge slabs of cool rock (plates of earth’s crust) have descended over 1,500 miles deep into the mantle of the earth to the outer edge of the core.
It’s significant that the seismic tomographic evidence shows that these slabs of rock are much cooler than the surrounding mantle. This shows that the cool slabs descended recently, meaning thousands, not millions of years ago. Snelling claims that the slabs descended during the flood, approximately 4,400 years ago. If the cool rock slabs had descended slowly over millions of years they would have heated up to be as hot as the surrounding mantle long ago. This is clear observational evidence that shows a rapid, recent, massive subduction of ocean floor crust into the earth’s interior. This evidence strongly supports the creationist, runaway tectonics cause of the flood.
The effects of the runaway tectonics continued to affect global climate after the flood. As mentioned above, the subduction of ocean floor into the earth’s mantle during the flood caused hot lava to flow up from the earth’s interior to the bottom of the ocean at the mid-ocean rift to form new ocean basin crust. In the centuries after the flood, the ocean waters remained warm because the new ocean basin that formed during the flood was hot and took many years to cool down. The heat of the ocean waters caused evaporation of water into clouds of extreme thickness and density that blocked out the sun in the centuries after the flood.
The huge dust clouds from the volcanoes that occurred during and after the flood also blocked out the sun and resulted in rapid cooling of the global climate. The moisture from the clouds fell as snow on a massive scale. The snowfall formed glaciers that covered, at its peak, 30 percent of the land area of earth. Ocean levels fell dramatically because so much water was contained in glaciers on land.
The warm ocean water caused warm climates at the ocean’s edge despite the glaciation inland. This would explain how tropical animals such as hippopotamuses lived in what is now England and Germany and other northern European countries. Arctic and warm climate ecosystems existed close to each other in some regions.
The warm oceans and cold continental interior lands would also explain why large parts of far northern lands such as parts of Siberia, Alaska and the Yukon were not glaciated but southern areas such as the northeastern United States were buried under hundreds of feet of ice. Air currents off of the warm oceans heated Siberia and other lands in some northern regions. Southern lands that had no warm ocean air currents were cold.
The biblical model better explains the mystery of the millions of woolly mammoth bones and carcasses scattered across Siberia. Siberia was a vast, fertile grassy plain during the Ice Age. Even secular scientists agree that Siberia and parts of northern Canada were not glaciated during the Ice Age. Even in Alaska, only the mountainous regions were glaciated. Siberia, Alaska and northern Canada supported a vast array of animals.
As the Ice Age ended, the oceans cooled and the warm winds off the oceans ended. The climate of Siberia, Alaska and northern Canada changed rapidly. It cooled to become the frigid arctic climate that it is today. This climatic whipsaw trapped millions of mammoths and other Ice Age animals in a deep freeze environment that they could not endure. There was a vast die-off of animals whose remains are abundant in the region. “The New Answers Book” mentioned above, describes this in depth in a chapter on the Ice Age.
Snelling, Oard and other creation scientists estimate it took 500 years for the Ice Age to peak and then 200 years for the huge glaciers to melt. The melting glaciers caused sea levels to rise and inundate many post-flood cities such as Atlantis and other Mediterranean cities.
The underwater ruins of these cities are only now being discovered by nautical archaeologists. There are submerged ruins in many parts of the world. There are sunken cities not only in the Mediterranean sea but also off the coasts of India and Japan. See my DTF #287 titled: “Submerged Ruins Prove Historical Accuracy of Genesis.” The article discusses the many submerged ruins and how this relates to ancient history and the Genesis flood. The article is available in the apologetic articles archive on my website at www.bnugent.org.
Snelling and Oard’s biblical model explains all Ice Age phenomena and it is consistent with all of the laws of physics. This is in contrast to many of the secular science models that are often quite strained in their explanation of phenomena. The Ice Age is just one block of evidence that gives support to the fact that the flood of Noah’s day was a real event in history. It helps prove the accuracy and reliability of the Bible as a divinely inspired history book.
The Bible is much more than a history book. The Bible reveals God as lawgiver and judge. It also reveals God as lover of humanity and redeemer. God sent His Son Jesus, the promised Messiah of Israel, to redeem people who trust in Him for salvation. Jesus fulfilled over three hundred Old Testament Bible prophecies. The prophets foretold that Christ would come to suffer and die, taking the penalty of our sins upon Himself so we can receive forgiveness. Christ rose from the dead to offer forgiveness of sins to all who turn to Him in repentance. I invite you now to call upon the name of Jesus Christ to receive forgiveness of sins!
Steps to salvation:
Jesus said “Ye must be born again” (John 3:7).
Prayer to receive salvation:
“Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).
To receive the salvation that Jesus purchased for us at the terrible cost of His suffering and death on our behalf I invite you to pray this simple prayer:
“Dear heavenly Father, I thank you for sending Jesus, the promised Messiah, to die for my sins. I admit that I am a sinner. I repent of my sins and I ask for your forgiveness on the basis of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. I ask you to fill me with your Holy Spirit to empower me to serve you under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, Amen.”
If you prayed this prayer in the humble sincerity of your heart then you have received everlasting life, which includes power to live right in this life and entrance into heaven in the afterlife!