Dear Sean, I hear what you are saying, but what you …

Comment on Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit by Bob Helm.

Dear Sean,

I hear what you are saying, but what you describe – rapid continental drift, large meteor impacts, massive volcanic eruptions, and flooding going on all over the place sounds like the last part of the flood to me. I agree that some land surfaces were exposed when the tertiary sediments were being laid down, but the presence of these catastrophic phenomena makes me doubtful that Noah and the animals were off the ark yet. Of course, even when they did disembark, they were at a high altitude in the Ararat region, and even then, the flood may have continued for some time at lower levels. So perhaps it is not quite accurate to equate the complete end of the flood with Noah leaving the ark.

Also, while some modern animals are represented in the lower tertiary, there are still many strange forms. There have even been a few reports of Paleocene dinosaur fossils, but this matter is still debated.

As I see it, the upper Cretaceous represents the crest of the flood, and the water went down from there. Now having said this, I would add that we can debate these details while maintaining our commitment to the creationist/flood geology model for natural history.

Bob Helm Also Commented

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit
Dear Professor Kent,

Two thoughts – although it appears in the NIV, your pluperfect – “the water had gone down” – is really unwarranted, because Hebrew does not have a pluperfect tense. Gen 8:3 in the NASB simply states: “At the end of the one hundred and fifty days, the water decreased.” There is no reason to make it any more complicated than that, and this statement accords perfectly with the idea that the flood crested on the 150th day. By the way, this is not “Bob Helm’s suggestion,” as many expositors hold this position.

Secondly, where in the world did you get the idea that every bird species was on the ark and that those ancient birds had identical diets to modern birds? Please don’t fall for the hoary falsehood that creationists believe in a fixity of species. Modern creationists agree with Darwin that new species emerge via natural selection. We do not equate baramins or “created kinds” with species, and we believe that micro-evolution occurs within the baramins.

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit
@Eddie: Eddie, I would like to see more research on Protoavis. I remember when its discovery was first announced in the early 1990s, it created a sensation, but then it was seemingly forgotten in the rush to prove that birds evolved from dinosaurs. I was trying to google recent information on Protoavis, but everything I found that was significant dated to the early 90s. If you have anything more recent on this fossil, I’d love to read it.

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit
This is an interesting article that examines extensive evidence for the eruption of lava into water in the Columbia River Basalts in southeastern Wahington and northeastern Oregon. This data suggests that eastern Washington was partially covered with water when these Miocene and early Pliocene deposits were laid down. This would accord with a model in which the Genesis flood ended in the late Cenozoic along the Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary. I’m posting this, not as the final word on the subject, but as food for thought.

Recent Comments by Bob Helm

Gary Gilbert, Spectrum, and Pseudogenes
What is wrong with conceding that many claims of scripture can only be accepted on faith?

I fully realize that 21st century scientists cannot perform X rays of Mary’s womb or insert instruments into her womb to determine exactly what took place when the Holy Spirit overshadowed her. Of course, I accept the virgin birth on faith! My point was that we now have examples of virgin births occuring as a result of modern scientific technology, and since science has now produced virgin births in mammals, if God is real, we have an analogy for how He could have done the same thing. @Professor Kent:

Gary Gilbert, Spectrum, and Pseudogenes
Darwinist is just short for Neo-Darwinist. While the majority of biologists subscribe to Neo-Darwinism, I would contest your statement that Darwinist=biologist. I prefer “Darwinist” to “evolutionist” because the latter is a slippery term. Even creationists believe in micro-evolution.@pauluc:

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
@Sean Pitman: Sean, it’s interesting and ironic how churches repeatedly try to become more relevant by accepting Darwinism and other forms of liberalism, but in the end, they always die, while churches that maintain their creationist stance and conservative values continue to grow.

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
@pauluc: I wondered if you would bring up alchemy. Just because Newton was wrong about alchemy, why try to slur him over it? Even though he was a great physicist, he was human, and he did make mistakes!

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
@Pauluc: Actually, there is one extrabiblical reference to Jesus’ Resurrection. In his “Antiquities of the Jews,” we have this from Flavius Josephus: “When the principal men among us had condemned Him [Jesus] to the cross, those who loved Him at first did not forsake Him. For He appeared to them alive again the third day. . .” This so-called “Testimonium Flavianum” has provoked fierce debate, with critics calling it an interpolation. However, it is written in the style of Josephus and appears in all the extant Greek manuscripts of “The Antiquities of the Jews.”