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Geology

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Geology is the study of the origin, history, and structure of the earth. This is usually taken to mean the formation of the fossil record or geologic column and other major features like mountains, rivers, lakes and the erosion that bodies of water cause as well as similar natural features of earth. The word comes from the Greek word geo meaning earth and logy which means "the study of."

From the creationist point of view, geology provides clear evidence of the global flood described in the Biblical book of Genesis. It is asserted that the flood-based interpretation of geological formations strongly supports a young earth and goes against the long ages the theory of evolution requires.

Contents

History and Development

One of the most prominent geologic thinkers was Niels Steensen (1638–1686) who was responsible for the development and observation of superposition. The term superposition describes the process of sedimentary rock deposition in a successive, mainly horizontal fashion. In his book entitled, Forerunner (1669) Steensen implied a roughly 6,000-year-old Earth and that fossils within the rock strata laid down through superposition were deposited by Noah’s Flood. The century after Seensen's death saw several prominent authors stand firm in the principles put forth in Steensen's book. The English geologist John Woodward (1665–1722) and the German geologist Johann Lehmann (1719–1767), to name a few, wrote books ultimately reinforcing that view.[1]

The idea of an old earth is based on the principle of uniformitarianism, which is the doctrine that geologic processes have acted in the same regular manner and intensity throughout geologic time. This concept was begun in 1795 by James Hutton and further developed by Charles Lyell who is considered the father of modern geology. Charles Darwin took Lyell's book "Principles of Geology" during his historic voyage on the Beagle. Lyell's book inspired Darwin to form his theory of slow biological change known as gradualism.

Flood Geology

Main Article: Flood geology

Flood geology is the field of geology that deals with the effects of catastrophic flooding, and how such events have shaped geologic formations. Creation geology is based on the assumption that the Biblical flood described in the book of Genesis was a real and historical event of global magnitude, and is therefore also known as flood geology. Creation geologists seek primarily to show that Earth's geologic features are best interpreted within the scope of this Biblical cataclysm; including sedimentary strata, fossilization, fossil fuels, submarine canyons, plate tectonics, salt domes and frozen mammoths.

Flood geology is a historical science that is premised on catastrophism and the rejection of uniformitarianism. Creation geologists develop models based upon the historicity of the global flood, which are testable and falsifiable. Interestingly, the difference between flood models and the interpretations of naturalistic geologists is largely just one of intensity. All geologists today accept the view that allows for major catastrophes interspersed among large time periods of near stasis. In contrast, Creation model put a series of closely related cataclysmic events into a short period of time. Flood geologists explain strata with reference to catastrophes like the eruption of Mount St. Helens, which carved out enormous canyons and laid down large amounts of rock strata within the space of a single day.

Principles

There are two main components of geologic science, which are physical geology and historical geology. Physical geology is the study of the materials that make the various rock formations and structures of earth and the processes or mechanisms that shape them. Historical geology is the study of earth's history with the study of sedimentary rocks, their relation in geologic time and the study of fossils and locations within the rocks.[2]

Stratigraphy is the study of rock strata, especially the distribution, deposition, and age of sedimentary rocks. William Smith advanced stratigraphy around 1815 when he mapped out strata of England and drew a geological map that is almost unchanged today.[3] The following principles of stratigraphy are held as the basis for much of historical and physical geology.

Superposition

Main Article: Principle of superposition

The principle of superposition, now known as the scientific law of superposition, is an axiom that forms one of the bases of the sciences of geology, archaeology, and other fields dealing with stratigraphy. It was first put forth in the 17th century by the Danish scientist Niels Steensen.

Continuity

Main Article: Principle of continuity

Strata are formed from sediments in a fluid. Therefore, when any stratum forms it must be bordered on its sides by another solid body, or else, the sediments will continue around the earth.

Original horizontality

Main Article: Principle of original horizontality

When a stratum is formed, the lower surface and surfaces of its sides, corresponded with the surfaces of the adjacent bodies. The upper surface was parallel to the horizon, as far as that is possible. With the exception of the lowest stratum, all the strata were contained in two parallel planes to the horizon and were at one time parallel to the horizon.

Geologists

Geologists (also know as geoscientists) study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the Earth, and the Earth's geologic past and present by using sophisticated instruments to analyze the composition of earth, rock, and water. Many geologists help to search for natural resources such as groundwater, minerals, metals, and petroleum. Others work closely with environmental and other scientists to preserve and clean up the environment.[4]

Creation geologists interpret the Earth's fossils and rocks based on the assumption that the Biblical flood described in the book of Genesis was a real and historical event, and seek primarily to show that Earth's geologic features are best interpreted within this worldview. The following are geologists who hold to this view, which is commonly called flood geology.

Sites of Geologic Interest

Site Name Country State / Province / Region
Ayers Rock Australia
Arches National Park United States Utah
Black Sea [[]] [[]]
Bryce Canyon United States Utah
Carlsbad Caverns United States New Mexico
Channeled Scablands United States Washington
Dinosaur National Monument United States Colorado
Utah
Dinosaur State Park United States Connecticut
Grand Canyon United States Arizona
Green River Formation United States Midwest
Joggins Nova Scotia [[]]
Mount St. Helens United States Washington
Morrison Formation United States
Canada
Western
Petrified Forest National Park United States Arizona
White Sands National Monument United States New Mexico
Yellowstone National Park United States Wyoming
Zion National Park United States Utah
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References

  1. Mortenson, Terry. "Where did the idea of millions of years come from?" June 21, 2007. Accessed August 20, 2008.
  2. Geology by Wikipedia
  3. Stratigraphy by Wikipedia
  4. Geoscientists and Hydrologists U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistica, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition. Accessed November 25, 2010.
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