A Biblical Model for the History of
As everyone who has read The Creation Explanation surely
understands, evolutionary scientists have a theoretical model for the origin and
development of the universe, the world, life, and man a model that fits their
materialistic philosophy. But is there a rational biblical creation model into which the
data of the sciences can be fitted? Indeed, there are. In fact, a number of such models
have been proposed during the past two centuries. We offer here a tentative or provisional
development of one that may serve as a basis for further thought and study by other
students of creation from a scientific perspective. Limited aspects of this model or
scenario were suggested in Chapter-3.
In science, systems of theories and laws serve as models or frameworks
for integrating the observational data of the several scientific disciplines. They provide
tentative explanations of the universe, how it works, and its origin and perhaps destiny.
The evolutionary model has for more than a century influenced a major part of research,
particularly in such fields as geology, paleontology, biological sciences, and
anthropology. Remember, however, that scientific models have an essential philosophical
character, especially models relating to origins. As we pointed out in Chapter-5, the scientific method cannot be applied to questions of origins in the same way
that is possible with, say, a question about the mechanism of genetic inheritance. The
evidence adduced for historical scenarios is in general circumstantial, so that
interpretations tend to be strongly influenced by philosophical presuppositions. The
philosophy of materialism inspires the evolutionary model, whereas the philosophy of
biblical theism informs the creation model.
The divinely revealed outline for the creation model is found in the
first eleven chapters of Genesis, the opening book of the Bible. What follows is a summary
of a creation model that we believe to be inreasonable accord with the biblical record. We
believe it is also in better accord with data of the sciences than is the evolutionary
model. We make no claim to finality except for those general principles and specific
details that are expressly stated in the Scriptures. We do not claim to have all the
problems that face young-earth creationists. Therefore, we hope that this provisional
creation model will encourage some Christians to study and creation-oriented research in
science, biblical chronology, and general scientific research for the glory of God.
Ex. 3:14, 20:11
Col. 1:16, 17
Heb. 1:1-3, 11:3
|The infinite-personal Spirit, God, created the physical
universe and the spiritual creation by His power and word. space, matter, energy, and time
all had a beginning. Before or outside of time exists only God who alone is infinite,
eternal, and unchangeable. He is the ground and source of all being.
||Initially the earth was dark, formless, disorganized
except that it was surrounded by waters, perhaps in violent motion. Thus the earliest
sedimentary rocks would be laid down without fossil content because life had not yet been
|In six normal days the entire work of creation was accomplished
and the surface of the earth transformed into a proper environment, complete with the
entire complex biosphere, for man's abode.
|In the first day the earth was provided with light and a
day- night cycle, and the first day closed.
||On the second day the watery envelope around the earth was
separated into liquid waters that entirely covered the globe, and a surrounding canopy of
water in vapor and cloud form, with the open atmosphere (firmament) or the first heaven
|In the third day one huge continental mass was lifted up
out of the waters to provide dry land for plant life. Plant life was created, for
the most part probably as seeds which then rapidly grew at a miraculous rate, filling the
soil with their root networks, establishing the plant foundation for the biosphere. The
plant kinds, though relatively more plastic than the animal kinds and therefore suitable
for man's intelligent selective breeding and control, were nevertheless created to vary
only within the limits of their original created kinds.
||On the fourth day the sun, moon, and stars were created in
a condition that made them suitable as a basis for telling time, seasons, years and days.
||On the fifth day God created sea life and flying creatures
such as birds and perhaps insects.
||On the first part of the sixth day God created land animal
life of all sorts. The higher animal kinds, though generally much less plastic than some
plant kinds, were created with considerable potential for variation. But the genetic
boundaries of the kinds are absolute. God may have created original specimens of a kind
with great genetic potential so that in the course of time through the genetic process of
segregation, numerous species could have arisen within the boundaries of that kind. Or He
may have created a number of potentially interbreeding types of species within a kind.
|Then, after the beautiful earth environment was completed
in its primeval perfection, God created man in His image, gave him dominion over all the
world and its creatures and made him a steward, particularly in the Garden of Eden.
Adam, using the language originally given to him by God, first demonstrated his dominion
and stewardship, as well as the intellectual capacity of primal, unfallen man, by
classifying and naming the land animals and birds.
||Although made from the dust of the earth as were the
plants and animals, Adam's race was founded in any entirely different manner. One man was
first created holding within himself all the potential of the race, and from tissue taken
from his side Eve was created, so that the entire race generated from them would be one in
Adam. Therefore, Adam could represent the race in the test of obedience in Eden.
||At the close of the sixth day the work of creation was
completed, and God saw it was very good, containing no trace of imperfection or evil.
||On the seventh day the Creator rested from His work of
creation, bringing to a close the creation week.
|Gen. 1:7, 2:6
||The level of the land surface originally was probably
generally lower and more even than at present, with rather low mountains. Also the sea
level was probably much lower than the modern level, so that the total dry land area was
considerably greater than at present. Evidence from the fossil record suggests that
tropical and semi-tropical climate prevailed over much of the globe. One cause of this may
have been a greater amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which increased the
atmospheric "greenhouse effect." Lush vegetation and forests extended over a
much greater proportion of the earth than at present. A much stronger earth magnetic field
would also protect the earth from more of the cosmic radiation from space. As a
consequence, mutations and other deleterious effects of cosmic rays on living organisms
would have been considerably reduced.
||In Eden before the fall, man was not subject to death.
Nevertheless, the biblical data suggest a natural biochemical order, because man and
animals lived by eating plants as food. Therefore, the laws of physics and chemistry,
including the Second Law of Thermodynamics, were apparently in effect.
|Gen. 2:9, 3:22-24
||But God had no doubt provided protective arrangements to
maintain the original perfection of His created beings. For example, the tree of life was
available to enable man to live indefinitely. Even today our bodies have repair systems
that continually function to correct damage to the DNA molecules of our genes.
||With the fall of man by his disobedience into the estate
of sin and misery, death by sin came upon all men, just as God had promised.
|Gen. Rom. 5:12
|The divine curse placed upon man was for his sake also
placed upon the world, in fact, upon the entire creation.
||Thus a perfect creation began to decay. The perfect
natural order that the Creator would, no doubt, have supplied with sustaining organizing
power, had not sin entered the scene, was allowed to suffer the progressively degenerating
effects of the curse. The presently observed Second Law of Thermodynamics fits this
picture. Man became immediately spiritually dead, losing his original righteousness, and
became subject to the morally and spiritually degrading effect of sin, as well as the
physically degenerating influences of a decaying physical order. The entire plant and
animal creation was dragged into a parallel downward course, a path not of evolution, but
|Gen. 3:15, 21
||Nevertheless, for man a spiritual path upward through the
word of a Redeemer was promised and made available to man.
||The conditions of life on the earth from Eden to the Flood
were probably basically as described earlier, yet with local disruptions and increasing
dislocations of the perfectly balanced order of the initial creation. Man's mental and
physical capabilities were still very great. Culture, technology, and cities were rapidly
developed. The ungodly line of Cain multiplied as did the godly line of Seth, and a
civilization dominated by the materialistic thinking and desires of unregenerate human
hearts filled much of the earth. Even the children of believers were drawn into the
ungodly relationships and the whole earth was corrupted.
||Finally, God had to judge and cleanse the world. One godly
family was chosen by God to preserve the race. By the time the ark was completed and the
Flood came, only eight believed strongly enough to break with the world system and go
2 Peter 3;3-7
|The remainder strongly enough to break with the world of
the race perished, along with the air-breathing land animals, in a global flood
catastrophe so stupendous and so ominous in its portent of judgment for sinful men, that
very few people today want to believe that it ever happened.
||The waters that inundated the entire surface of the earth
probably came from three, perhaps four sources. First, water vapor in the atmosphere
condensed and fell as rain. Second, juvenile water from the crust of the earth poured
through fissures in ocean floors. Third, the relative levels of the land surface and ocean
bottom changed, the land sinking and the ocean floor rising, until every mountain top was
covered. Fourth, God may have imported additional water from space by miraculous means.
The Flood was accompanied by violent movements of the earth's crust, and by
volcanic activity of momentous proportions. Tremendous tidal waves and rushing currents
scoured and deeply eroded the continental surface. Entire forests were ripped up and
transported large distances to be dumped where the currents slowed. The sediments formed
from the eroded materials were dropped in vast sheets, deeply burying the plant remains,
much of which were converted to coal. Animals were fossilized by the billions, preserving
plain evidence of their sudden death. The currents shifted, reversed, and laid down layer
after layer of sediments, many containing plant and animal remains that were fossilized.
On the bottom of some of the sequences of strata, some of the original
sedimentary layers from the creation week were preserved, or sometimes they were eroded
away and redeposited elsewhere. In general, bottom-dwelling sea creatures tended to be
buried first, whole communities composed of many different species being buried together.
Amphibious creatures and other animals living near the continental margins were often
trapped next, and the more mobile dry land animals often were able to escape the rising
flood waters for longer periods and thus were entombed in strata above the other types of
animals. Humans were usually able to protect themselves longer, fleeing to higher and
higher ground before they were finally swept away to their death. Thus, their bodies were
subjected to the most violent effects of the flood waters, and many were left strewn on
the surface after the Flood, subjected to rapid decay, and therefore left few fossils.
Although the preceding scenario describes the formation of the most
common fossil sequences in the strata, the violence and erratic character of the currents
and tidal waves associated with the global flood resulted in many anomalous sequences.
This explains the numerous areas where so-called reversed strata occur, such as in the
famous Lewis Overthrust in Glacier Park. There actually was no 'overthrust," but the
erratic action of water laid down non-fossiliferous sediments on top of shallow sea
sediments containing many marine fossils.
When the flood waters subsided, seeds soon began to sprout and twigs and
branches of many kinds of plants were able to take root quickly. The ark, a 30,000 ton
vessel some 450 feet long, disgorged its precious cargo of animals and humans which
overspread the ruined earth's surface, taking directions determined by the providence of a
sovereign Creator. the land mass was still, for the most part at least, connected in one
great supercontinent. This explains how certain animal types are found only on particular
continents, for example, most of the marsupials such as kangaroos in or near Australia.
Following the Flood, the family of Noah began the slow and difficult
process of reestablishing the human race on the earth. They brought through the Flood much
of the culture and technology of the pre-Flood civilization. Thus civilization could
develop relatively rapidly. No doubt the living conditions were rigorous in those first
centuries after the Flood. The earth's crust was shuddering from its recent ordeal.
Tremendous torrents of lava poured over large areas of the world, and high mountain chains
were pushed up to dominate many landscapes.
The global climatic pattern was completely upset and changed by the
Flood. The more or less global pre-flood semi-tropical climate was replaced by an entirely
new regime. The greenhouse effect was less than previously, and average temperatures
dropped suddenly, perhaps as much as fifteen degrees. Great ice caps spread from centers
near the poles and subjected large areas of the land surface to glacial action. If the
Flood was, indeed, at around 5000 B.C, perhaps there were a number of glacial advances and
retreats in the next 2000 years. The center of human population expansion in the Middle
East would not be directly affected by the glaciers, but the pioneer elements of mankind
which pushed out rapidly to the far reaches of the globe after the flood would be greatly
affected. Probably there was a number of post-Flood catastrophes that swamped large
segments of the animal and plant populations which rapidly occupied the land after the
Flood. Perhaps one or more of these events accounted for the tremendous destruction of
life now evidenced by the frozen mammoths and other creatures as well as the vast bone
deposits found in some of the Arctic island north of Siberia.
It should be pointed out that the pioneer groups of humans who extended
the frontiers of the race were mostly living and traveling as small, isolated breeding
populations. They tended to undergo much more rapid degenerative changes and genetic
alternations, especially since they would also be under the pressure of difficult living
conditions on the outer reaches of human exploration. Their fossil remains would be
expected to show some differences from those of the average human types, the peoples that
remained closer to the cradle of civilization. Animal populations may also have tended to
change rather rapidly within the limits of their created kinds as they overspread the
earth. And it must be remembered that the Flood was a miraculous intervention by God into
the earth history. The Creator may have supernaturally influenced some populations of
plants and animals by speeding up the normal processes of adaptation to new environmental
Another effect that may have contributed to more rapid genetic changes
and to shortening of human and animal life-spans is related to the post-Flood world
climate. Weakening of the earth's magnetic field may have allowed more cosmic radiation to
reach the earth's surface. This and other conditions differing from those before the Flood
may have increased the rate of deleterious mutations, thus accelerating the rate of
degeneration of all creatures.
|Gen. 5 & 11
||Genesis 11 records a rather rapid decrease in human
||By a thousand years after the Flood another materialistic
civilization had been built in the Middle East, with large cities and increasingly
centralized control of religion, government, and culture. Mankind was uniting in a
cooperative system that was man-centered and anti-God.
||God broke this up by confusing their language, scattering
the peoples as different nations and ethnic groups.
this time in the days of Peleg, God also accelerated the division of the major dry land
mass physically, producing the pattern of separate continents we know today. At this time
when plates of the earth's crust were moved rapidly by forces know only to God, further
upthrusting of the major mountain chains occurred, and this continued for perhaps another
thousand years as the continents moved into their modern relationships on the globe.
In the meantime the great ancient civilizations, the Sumerian and the
Egyptian, had developed and left their remains which so puzzle the cultural
anthropologists who wonder where they came from, fully developed in art, technology,
government, and religion.
||'The stage of history was now set for God to choose
Abraham and separate him from the polytheistic culture of the Chaldeans, to bring him into
a very small land, Palestine, to serve the God of Creation. This land would for some two
thousand years be the scene of God's direct dealings with Adam's race. Even now this land
is again becoming the enter of events that promise to shake the world and drive the course
of human history until the end of the age.
This creation model is
in many respects tentative, not final or complete. It is offered as a framework for
understanding the data of science in a manner that recognizes the authority of the Bible
as the verbally inspired and infallible Word of God. It may also serve as a guide to
Christians who desire to pursue scientific research in channels that will be blessed by
God because His truth has been made the foundation for expanding human knowledge of His