The Bottom Line

Introduction:
Tactics of Young Earth Creation Science (YECS) leaders include highlighting legitimate disagreements among mainstream scientists and fabricating alleged problems with evolutionary theories to suggest evolutionary explanations for natural, observable phenomena are not reasonable.  There is also no unified theory of Young Earth Creation in which natural evidence from all branches of science support the same conclusions and proposed natural processes.

Please note - My use of the terms "evolution" and "evolutionary" in the discussion below only means "change over time" and does not address any spiritual beliefs about whether or not a Creator exists and interacts with the natural universe.  If you compare the YECS explanations of origins with those of mainstream science, they both employ remarkably similar evolutionary events to explain the same physical evidence.  The primary difference is that YECS evolution is hundreds to millions of times more rapid than anything conceived by mainstream evolutionary theory, which results in some serious logical problems described in the other sections.

Problems with Plate Tectonics, Noah's Ark and Flood Geology:
For evidence of plate tectonics, which is accepted by YECS leaders, to fit within the confines of a young earth a period of "Continental Sprint" would be required in which continents jetted around the globe, at least 100 thousand times faster than they currently move, driven by forces that have no natural explanation that has been demonstrated as possible by those promoting "Continental Sprint".
Problems with Sedimentary Sequences, other Continuous Timeline Evidence and Flood Geology:
For evidence of sedimentary deposits, coral reefs, exposed salt deposits, Ice Ages and other natural phenomena to fit within the confines of a young earth history, it would have been necessary for the natural processes to occur thousands of times faster than accepted by mainstream scientists.  These phenomena would also have to be driven by  speculated mechanisms that are completely unobserved or tested by science.  Sediments miles deep would need to form in a few months (Sedimentation Sprint) in carefully defined layers ("Selective Sedimentary Sorting"), each representing a specific aquatic or terrestrial environment during a cataclysmic worldwide flood.  These miles of new mud, sand and silt sediments (even the sediments at the surface) would then need to undergo lithification (turn into rock) in a remarkably short period of time ("precipitous lithification").
Problems with Genetics:
Suffice it to say that Young Earth Genetics requires a "Genetic Sprint"" on a scale that is unprecedented and unimaginable based on all commonly accepted mechanisms of genetics and speciation.  Current mainstream theories would, by definition be false and, as with all other YECS explanations,  a complete reinvention of genetics would be required with solid proof of all replacement hypotheses.

Problems with Animal Diversity and Distribution:
A "Genetic Sprint" would be required to drive an "Speciation Sprint" necessary to produce hundreds of new species from each pair of ark "Kinds" in a remarkably short period of time.  The proposed YECS "Speciation Sprint" would have been far more rapid and produced far more new species than any known or imagined mainstream evolutionary process.  Imagine the earth after the flood - all previous environments everywhere would have been obliterated and the earth would have been completely covered by mud, sand, silt and scraped rock until new ecosystems could become established.  According to the YECS explanations pairs of 1,700 - 8,000 "Kinds" of animals on the ark would have had to evolve into several million different species and migrate across newly formed continents and oceans to newly formed environments -- all in several thousand years. 

The new locations of the continents after the period of "Continental Sprint" following the flood would mean any plants that managed to grow on top of thousands of feet of recently deposited flood sediments would need to be fully adapted to these new environments, or evolve the ability to survive in a remarkably short period of time ("Speciation Sprint").  Did all these migrating animals have a road map to new environments they were already 'designed' to inhabit, or did the "Speciation Sprint" include dramatic physical and behavioral changes that allowed them to survive in the new environments ("Adaptive Sprint")?  This proposed "Speciation Sprint" is even more remarkable considering that the flood would have eradicated nearly all pre-flood genetic diversity since all except 2-7 pairs of animals died.   Without the genetic diversity of a large population the only way "Speciation Sprint" could have taken place would have been by a "Mutational Sprint".  It would have been necessary for new, beneficial genes to form at a completely unheard of pace to restore the genetic diversity required to quickly form very different species of animals. 

Problems with the Apparent Size of the Universe, the Speed of Light and a Young Universe:
YECS leaders speculate that all of branches of mainstream science and all theories that relate to the age of the universe, the speed of light, the formation of stars, the elements, galaxies, solar systems and planets are completely wrong.  The primary evidence for this conclusion is that the age of the universe, as understood by all mainstream scientists, does not fit within the confines of a very specific and narrow interpretation of a few Biblical passages.

The Big Picture: When someone reads two completely different and mutually exclusive explanations of how some specific feature or characteristic of our earth, the solar system or the universe originated it can be difficult to determine which version is true if the reader is not a trained and experienced scientist who understands all of the evidence.  If details (and proof) of exactly how the proposed hypothesis create the observed evidence are ignored or glossed over, and logical consequences of accepting an explanation are disregarded, any explanation can be made to sound convincing. When you take a long, considered look at the YECS explanations you will discover an amazing fact. This group is not actually against evolution (change over time) at all, the problem is their concept of time is completely outside the realm of natural cause and effect relationships as understood by science.

My goals in these examples are to demonstrate how:

  •  most YECS explanations describe evolutionary events and processes that are actually very similar to those of mainstream science to explain all physical evidence on earth and in the universe --- they accept evidence of floods, layers of sedimentary rock formation and erosion, plate tectonics, an Ice Age, formation of new species, distribution and adaptation of plant and animal species into specific environments, and evidence of early human civilizations.

  • the primary difference between YECS evolutionary theories and mainstream scientific evolutionary theories is the concept of time.  All YECS evolutionary processes must have taken place over a one year to 700 year time period involving various manifestations of "Evolutionary Sprint".  This in stark contrast to mainstream theories which require periods of time for the same processes that stretch over thousands to millions of years.

  • accepting the YECS explanations of evolutionary alternatives leads to consequences that are obviously logically outside the realm of probability if only natural mechanisms are accepted.  If supernatural intervention is allowed, the explanations work, but they are no longer scientific.

  • the very specific, limited interpretation of a few verses in the Bible by YECS leaders is not the only possible legitimate interpretation of scripture.  Other interpretations of Genesis and other passages support the same fundamental Christian beliefs as held by Young Earth Creationists: yet they permit evolutionary processes to unfold over millennia instead of decades and allow belief in a Creator who is infinitely imaginative and who created a universe of incalculable possibilities unrestrained by human imagination where science and religion do not have wage war - a universe that operates on natural laws that can be studied and understood by anyone of any faith (or no faith).

Most people believe BiasScience positions, not because of any actual supporting science, but because the BiasScience beliefs and explanations resonate with pre-existing personal beliefs and have been presented with science-sounding supporting "evidence".  I know first-hand, if a person who has a strong faith in Biblical Truth has been taught that their understanding of God and their salvation depend on a very specific interpretation of a few Biblical passages, it is extremely easy to accept the YECS interpretations of all evidence without question.

There are many respected, conservative, evangelical Christians who accept the mainstream consensus of evolutionary change - with God as the planner.
Billy Graham on Evolution: "I don't think that there's any conflict at all between science today and the scriptures. I think that we have misinterpreted the Scriptures many times and we've tried to make the Scriptures say things they weren't meant to say, I think that we have made a mistake by thinking the Bible is a scientific book. The Bible is not a book of science. The Bible is a book of Redemption, and of course I accept the Creation story. I believe that God did create the universe. I believe that God created man, and whether it came by an evolutionary process and at a certain point He took this person or being and made him a living soul or not, does not change the fact that God did create man. ... whichever way God did it makes no difference as to what man is and man's relationship to God.” Billy Graham: Personal Thoughts of a Public Man, 1997. p. 72-74  

I will try to quote specific YECS explanations in the context of the Big Picture that frames the details of what Young Earth Creation Scientists claim must have happened during an exceptionally short period of time for any YECS hypotheses to be valid.  If you accept the YECS story of the natural world because that is all you have been taught, consider examining the possibility of alternative interpretations of Genesis (as I did years ago) which don't require the arbitrary dismissal of all mainstream science as it relates to evolutionary change and an old universe.  Consider the possibility of a Creator who is capable of designing and implementing a spectacular evolutionary plan that can unfold over hundreds of millions of years (without the necessity of constant tweaking) instead of several thousand years with continual intervention.  Consider the scriptures as a theological document that presents Spiritual Truths not a science textbook that describes provisional truths and human understanding.

The goal of science is to understand the workings of the natural universe and determine natural cause and effect relationships (natural laws).  The goal of religion is to understand the spiritual (non-scientific) component of humanity.  Nothing in any scientific discipline can prove (or disprove) any spiritual belief, and no spiritual belief can provide a scientific explanation for any observation of nature.  Any scientist of any religious belief (or no religious belief) can perform the same scientific experiments and observations and come to the exactly the same conclusions about natural laws.  Scientific conclusions can never be dictated by spiritual beliefs any more than spiritual beliefs can be validated by science, a constantly changing human endeavor.   

Introduction

Young Earth Creation Science (YECS) leaders employ three tactics in an effort to try and support their beliefs:

  1. Legitimate disagreements within the scientific community (and alleged problems with mainstream explanations)  are presented to try and prove that the overall scientific consensus is false.  The goal of that strategy is, if the current scientific explanation is false, that 'proves' the YECS alternative is valid.  That's a false assumption.  First, because mainstream scientists don't accept the alleged problems and disagreements as legitimate issues of concern.  Second, even if all current scientific theories in all disciplines that seem to validate the conclusion of a very old universe were conclusively shown to be invalid, that does not automatically validate the YECS alternative of a young earth.  All YECS hypotheses that allegedly explain the formation of all natural evidence in a few thousand years would need to be independently confirmed.  If even one of the thousands of lines of interrelated evidence that support evolution and an old universe is true, YECS explanations cannot be a valid explanation of nature.

    The 10 Best Evidences from Science that Confirm a Young Earth - Answers in Genesis
    Ken Ham's 10 facts that prove creationism - Debunked
    Evidences for a Young Earth Countered by a former creationist.
    How Good Are Those Young-Earth Arguments?, Dave E. Matson; The Fatal Flaws of Flood Geology, C.G. Weber

  2. YECS leaders fabricate alleged problems with evolutionary theories  to try and suggest that mainstream scientific theories are incapable of explaining the evidence.
  3. YECS leaders provide explanations for isolated, specific issues and "evidence" they believe contradicts mainstream evolutionary theory and instead support a young-earth/flood model.  As you read through YECS literature you will never find specific explanations of all the physical evidence in the universe, on earth and in all organisms (living and dead) in a unified creation/flood theory.  YECS leaders generally accept the same physical evidence as mainstream scientists, however the alleged "natural processes" and timelines proposed to explain the evidence are dramatically different from those accepted by nearly all scientists.

    • You will read that the mainstream theory of plate tectonics must be wrong and that someone has proposed an alternative ("Continental Sprint") where the same movement of earth's continents is accepted, but in months instead of millions of years - but you will find no evidence to support that alternative. 

    • You will read that the mainstream theories explaining nearly all geological features on earth - including very Specific Sedimentary layers -- which for example, contain terrestrial footprints between layers of marine sediments -- must be wrong and that someone has proposed an alternative ("Selective Sedimentary Sorting") where a catastrophic flood was able to deposit carefully sorted sediments miles deep from many dramatically different ecosystems - but you will find no evidence to support that alternative. 

    • You will read that mainstream theories which describe many cycles of long periods of relatively stable environments punctuated by periodic floods, landslides, earthquakes, tectonic movement, dramatic climate changes, volcanic activity, multiple meteor and asteroid impacts, etc. must be wrong and that instead there was a single catastrophic, year-long flood and 600 - 700 year Ice Age that created all the same evidence unbelievably rapidly - but you will find no comprehensive body of evidence to support that alternative.

    • You will read that the mainstream theory of evolutionary genetics - living organisms evolving over very long periods of time -  must be wrong and that someone has proposed an alternative ("Genetic Sprint") to create all modern species from a relatively few "Kinds" after Noah's flood) - but you will find no evidence to support that alternative.

    • You will read that the mainstream theory that the distribution of all animals around the world required millions of years must be wrong and that all land animal and bird species alive today (and many extinct species) evolved from 2-14 representatives of 1,000-8,000 "Kinds" of ancestors that survived the flood.  In several thousand years offspring from each of these "Kinds" underwent "Speciation Sprint" into dozens of new genera and species and migrated from the mountains of Ararat to specific environments all over the world where they already had (or evolved) the physical and behavioral traits to survive - but you will find no evidence to support that alternative.

    • You will read that the mainstream theory of light must be wrong and that someone has proposed a possible alternative (infinite light speed) - but you will find no evidence to support that alternative.

    In the YECS literature you will read descriptions of purported evidence and alleged historic events that by all commonly accepted scientific theories could not possibly have been caused by natural processes (processes that can be studied by science).  These explanations require the YECS leaders to create spectacular, unobserved, unproven, untested 'natural processes' (one might even say supernatural intervention).

    Keep this description of scientific consensus, presented earlier, in mind as you examine YECS speculations, "Science achieves a consensus when scientists stop arguing. ...Nearly all hypotheses will fall by the wayside during [the testing of different proposed hypotheses], because only one is going to answer the question properly, without leaving all kinds of odd dangling bits that don’t quite add up. Bad theories are usually rather untidy."  This is not even strictly applicable, however, because YECS speculations have never been any part of the mainstream discussion of possible legitimate hypotheses.  I include it, however, because of the statement, "Bad theories are usually rather untidy"  YECS 'theories' are not only untidy, but as you can determine for yourself by considering the examples provided, they usually don't fully explain the evidence, and they actually create more questions and problems than they try to answer.

    Not only must the YECS leaders demonstrate exactly how nearly all scientists in the world have completely misinterpreted all evidence that evolutionary theory explains, they must clearly prove that all natural evidence supports their theories instead - without any supernatural help.

    Ask YECS leaders to provide a cohesive, unified set of alternative scientific theories to explain how all of the existing evidence in all of the interrelated scientific disciplines clearly describe and explain a universe that is no more than 10 thousand years old - somewhere in the explanation you will hear that God just created it that way.  What you will read is hundreds of isolated speculations that can seem plausible until they are examined within the context of the entire body of evidence and checked for internal consistency and actual supporting evidence that proves the explanations are possible without supernatural intervention.

    The other sections contain just a few examples of evidence and theories accepted by the entire scientific community that are challenged by YECS leaders.  To be clear, the "evolutionary examples" in the following discussion do NOT require an atheistic interpretation of the evidence.  The examples only represent a description of how nearly all scientists, whatever their religious beliefs, interpret the the evidence as supporting natural processes that require extremely long periods of time to unfold.  These interpretations are supported by natural processes that can be observed and studied today.  It is my contention that neither the challenges to evolutionary theory nor the YECS alternatives are supported by comprehensive, rigorous, testable explanatory scientific hypotheses within all relevant disciplines.  A common YECS ploy is to try and link mainstream evolutionary theory with atheism.  An absolutely fundamental and necessary characteristic of any scientific theories, however, is that validity does not depend on specific religious beliefs or lack thereof.

    When examining YECS claims, begin with the Big Picture of evolutionary vs. young earth explanations of all the available scientific evidence.  The magnitude of the problems caused by condensing evolutionary theory requirements of hundreds of millions of years into six thousand years or less will become obvious.

    When you carefully examine any of the YECS explanations in the context of what is understood about the natural universe by all mainstream scientists it becomes obvious that all alleged "Natural Process" alternatives proposed by YECS promoters are unworkable fabrications.  YECS speculations attempt to explain the origins of most of the same physical phenomena in nature as mainstream science, only in an unimaginably condensed time frame (several thousand years instead of many millions of years).  Consequently, each YECS explanation of geological, biological, genetic, astronomical findings requires inventing processes to drive "Evolutionary Sprint" like, "Continental Sprint", "Selective Sedimentary Sorting", "Precipitous Lithification", "Genetic Sprint", "Speciation Sprint" and "Anisotropic Synchrony Convention" to try and convince the public they have legitimate "Instant-Evolutionary" alternatives to mainstream long-process evolutionary theories. In fact, the YECS speculations of the natural evidence are no more scientific, and far less believable, than simply invoking miracles.

    An Evangelical Dialogue on Evolution - A collection of articles promoting a positive relationship between Evangelical Christianity and evolutionary science by Steve Martin.  "From my perspective, it is not actually the theory of biological evolution that is significant, but Evangelicalism's misguided response to it. Not understanding how God created life is one thing; insisting that God could not have achieved his purpose through biological evolution is quite another.  Adding anti-evolution beliefs and an anti-science attitude to the gospel is no addition at all, but a corruption at least on par with the early Jerusalem church's insistence on continuing the observance of Jewish law." and "Though the truth in Genesis is contained in a vessel that is foreign to a modern, science-oriented culture, it is a truth that modern man desperately needs to hear. Let's make sure the world hears this message, and not the one that is garbled, tainted, and damaged by a dogmatic insistence and focus on specific scientific claims."
    Religion has nothing to do with science - and vice versa: Geneticist and Dominican priest, Francisco J. Ayala has this to say about the differences between religion and science, "Science and religious beliefs need not be in contradiction. If they are properly understood, they cannot be in contradiction because science and religion concern different matters. ... I contend that both – scientists denying religion and believers rejecting science – are wrong. Science and religious beliefs need not be in contradiction. If they are properly understood, they cannot be in contradiction because science and religion concern different matters." Science, evolution, and creationism, From Priest to Scientist: An Interview with Dr. Francisco J. AyalaThe Christian Man's Evolution, Roving Defender of Evolution, and of Room for God and Scholar Says Religion And Science Can Co-Exist
    Letters to Creationists: "Welcome to Letters to Creationists. This represents my attempt to parse reality: what things happen in accord with natural laws, and what is supernatural ? Two major themes are creation/evolution and present-day miracles."

Plate Tectonics, Noah's Ark and So-Called Flood 'Geology'

No natural, comprehensive, scientific hypotheses have been proposed by Young Earth Creation Science (YECS) leaders to explain the combined geological, fossil, glacial, paliomagnetic and biological evidence throughout the world after all land animals except those on Noah's ark were allegedly destroyed in a flood just 4,300 years ago.  There are also no specific scientific theories proposed to explain either the survival and repopulation of plant species or both fresh and salt-water aquatic organisms (which are sensitive to changes in temperature, turbidity, light and salinity levels).  These organisms would have been severely disturbed, if not driven to extinction, by a catastrophic global flood, "Continental Sprint" and a 700-year Ice Age.

If you read the explanations on YECS sites, they will offer only vague suggestions of what might have happened during Noah's flood "Perhaps many fish found shelter and nutrition under [floating mats of vegetation], as insects may have, on the mats themselves." or , "Perhaps before the Flood, fish were even more adaptable."  (J. Morris, ICR explanation)  As you read the speculations, of how Noah's flood could have resulted in the observed evidence, notice the complete absence of any scientific details or scientific confirmation of plausibility using any processes observable and measurable today. Plate Tectonics: Pangaea Most YECS explanations have a section that states or implies that the explanation must be correct because they support the YECS interpretations of scripture. 

The image to the right shows Pangaea, the most recent supercontinent.  According to scientific estimates it existed from 300 to 175 million years ago.  By YECS estimates it formed about half-way through Noah's flood about 4,300 years ago. 

There are many sources of information that describe plate tectonics - a very slow process as understood by mainstream science.  An Introduction to Plate Tectonics, Plate Tectonics The Changing Earth

However, according to an explanation of catastrophic plate tectonics provided by Answers in Genesis, "Conclusions depend on starting assumptions. ...Rather than the slow continental drift suggested by secular geologists, the biblical explanation can be thought of as Continental Sprint. Rather than acting over millions of years to shape the earth's continents, the originally created continents [Rodinia] separated in a matter of weeks, collided [to form Pangeae], and then separated again during the Flood to arrive at their current positions. Additional details, "Today's continents were once joined together because some mountain chains, such as the Appalachians (US) and Caledonians (UK and Scandinavia, are now separated by thousands of miles. But these mountains were not on the original supercontinent because they are made out of Flood deposits.  The only way such mountain chains could form is for the original supercontinent to break apart, the plates get covered by layers containing dead animals, and then crash together temporarily.  As these plates moved again, they took with them pieces of the mountain chain formed by the collision, one piece in the US and one piece in the UK and Scandinavia."

Continental HistoryThe diagram to the right shows the three most recent continent configurations as understood by mainstream science and flood geologists.  The mainstream dates for the continents are listed, and the YECS date is a one-year period around 4,300 years ago.  In the summary below I will use a recent (2014) YECS explanation of geological history.   After the Creation, there was a single supercontinent Rodinia (surrounded by a single ocean) on which Adam and Eve, their descendants, Noah and his family and all land animals (including birds) lived.

Consider very carefully exactly what physical processes the highlighted YECS claims above require during a one year period.  To the best of my understanding, there are no natural geological processes observable today (or even imagined) that can provide an any mechanism to explain the YECS speculations that:

  1. In the 1,692 years between the Fall of man and Noah's flood all animals found in the fossil record along with all humans and human-like creatures (hominin remains, including Australopithecus, Homo habilis, Homo erectus, Homo ergaster, Homo neanderthalensis, etc.) found in the flood fossil record migrated from the Garden of Eden to the various areas of Rodinia where they were later swept into the flood and deposited into very specific layers of sediment to form most of the geologic record.  Creationists do not have an answer for whether or not all insects were invited onto the Ark or whether they had to survive a year in floodwaters, but you can imagine serious problems with either scenario.

  2. "We cannot be certain whether God used an asteroid or swarms of asteroids to begin the Flood event and the resulting breakup of the earth’s crust into plates. However, we do find evidence that asteroids were striking the earth at catastrophic rates during the Flood and that these asteroids were spread over the earth’s surface. Asteroids surely contributed greatly to the horrific and violent geologic events that took place during God’s year of judgment of the earth." (Did Meteors Trigger Noah's Flood?)

  3. "As the volcanic fountains opened up in what is now the Grand Canyon area, the colossally stupendous force just pushed the pre-Flood rock aside and tilted it up. ... The first Flood current in the area came with such tremendous force that it sheared off the tilted Precambrian rocks in virtually a straight line, producing the so-called 'angular unconformity' and 'great unconformity'" (AIG)

    In the YECS model, during the first part of the one-year global flood, the original land surface was "sheared off" and then thousands of feet of sediments were deposited over parts of Rodinia and adjacent areas of the ocean floor.  In the region that would become the Grand Canyon for example, after the first flood currents ripped off the Precambrian rocks, about 1,200 feet of marine sediments (which would become the Tonto Group) containing trilobites and other extinct marine organisms were carefully deposited over the unconformities. 

    After the Tonto Group sediments were deposited, another 8,000 feet or so of additional, carefully sorted deposits of sand, mud, fossils, etc. representing specific marine and terrestrial environments were deposited over the future Grand Canyon with no mixing.  This deposition of thousands of feet of sediments containing layers of specific plant and animal remains representing specific terrestrial and aquatic environments was repeated all over the earth.

    The organisms that look most like species alive today are nearly all found in the top-most layers of the fossil record - in other words, no mammals, fish, birds, reptiles, flowering plants (or their pollen) , etc. are found mixed into the bottom-most sedimentary layers with trilobites and other early marine species.  Trilobites and other early marine species found with them are never found mixed with dinosaurs, mammals, fish, birds, reptiles, flowering plants (or their pollen) in the upper levels anywhere in the world.  Dinosaurs, and the unique animal species found fossilized with them, are found in strata below those that contain fossils of most mammals and above those that contain trilobites - no mixing.   This "Selective Sedimentary Sorting" appears to represent a very specific flood process unlike anything ever seen or imagined today.

  4. Toward the middle-to-end of the flood (after most new sedimentary layers had been deposited), Rodinia split apart and the pieces "Sprinted" around and crashed together again to form a new continent (Pangaea).  This activity formed many of the mountain ranges seen today (the Appalachian, Caledonian, Little Atlas mountain examples in the image above plus many more worldwide).

  5. India sprinting into Eursia to form the Himalayan mountainsPangaea then split apart, and within a few months::

    • The newly formed continents "Sprinted" away from each other to their new locations thousands of miles apart leaving matching geological and fossil evidence on different continents.

    • TThe Grand Canyon, Fish River Canyon, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Waimea Canyon and other major canyons and gorges in the world were carved out in a few years as flood waters receded or post-flood lakes emptied. 

    • The 3,000 mile-wide Atlantic Ocean was formed by upwelling molten rock (magma) in the mid-Atlantic ridge which rapidly pushed the continents apart.   Symmetrical strips of seafloor formed on either side of the ridge with Magnetic Reversalsdifferent magnetic orientation that are consistent with the reversals of the earth's magnetic poles during the process.  However, there is no evidence whatever that these magnetic reversals can occur rapidly or that the continental plates can (or did) move rapidly.

    • India 'Sprinted' north to crash into Asia and form the Himalayan Mountains.

    • All this remarkably violent geological activity apparently took place during the last half of the flood year or shortly thereafter.

    • A 600 to 700 year-long Ice Age was triggered during which the "Kind" ancestors of the so-called Pleistocene Megafauna: giant sloths; mammoth and mastodon species; sabre-toothed cats, ‬Smilodon; giant deer, Megaloceros; giant armadillos, Glyptodons; giant birds (Argentavis,  ‬Dinornis and Pelagornis); the cave bear, Ursus spelaeus; giant lemurs; the giant rhinoceros, Paraceratherium and Coelodonta; giant pigs, Daeodon; giant otters, Siamogale; and giant beavers, Castoroides all migrated from Mount Ararat to the regions around the world where their remains are found, evolved into different species, thrived for a few hundred years and then all went extinct.  Some of their smaller ancestors survived.  Imagine the magnitude and speed of diversification required to form all the different modern and extinct species from single pairs of flood-survivor "Kinds".  Additional complications will be discussed in the genetics section.

      Some YECS explanations add yet another complicating twist.  According to Amazing Discoveries 'Continental Sprint' actually occurred aafter the animal migration and recolonization of Rodinia, "t;After the reoccupation of the post-catastrophic world, the earth experienced a further cycle of catastrophism. Evidence for this can be seen in the vast volcanic deposits present in the youngest layers of the geological column. Volcanism of this scale was probably unleashed when the super-continent Pangaea split up to form the present-day continents. It is estimated that 50,000 volcanoes (the mid-Atlantic Ridge and the Pacific ring of fire) were active at this time."

  6. All other geological features found on the newly-created earth's surface were formed within a span of several thousand years.  All the diverse and unique ecosystems found on earth today formed on the washed-out, devastated surface of earth within a span of several thousand years during and after a 700-year ice age.  

    Within several thousand years, all of the modern animal species found in these new, unique ecosystems evolved from 1-7 ancestor "Kinds" on the ark and migrated, often thousands of miles across land and ocean, to these new ecosystems they were already adapted (or rapidly evolved) to survive in.

    AAccording to YECS explanations, two of each hominin "Kinds" or "Holobaramins" would have also been on Noah's ark, "Eight previously published cladistic studies of fossil and extant hominids were reexamined with baraminic distance correlation (BDC) and multidimensional scaling (MDS). Results indicate that hominins may be divided into as many as four different holobaramins:"  In a few hundred years after the flood these four "Kinds" would have migrated to the areas where the post-flood physical and cultural remains of Australopithecus, Homo habilis, Homo erectus, Homo ergaster, Homo neanderthalensis, etc. have all been found.  They lived for a brief period, left some remains and artifacts, and then all hominid species except H. sapiens become extinct. 

    The timeline of human evolution "outlines the major events in the development of the human species [according to mainstream science], Homo sapiens, and the evolution of our ancestors. It includes brief explanations of some of the species, genera, and the higher ranks of taxa that are seen today as possible ancestors of modern humans."  This description, is not meant to be an exact description of evolutionary changes, but it provides a useful timeline to compare against the 6,000 year YECS alternative.

Since most of the continental movement must have concluded before the birth of Christ (sometime between 2347 BC and 4 BC), that "Continental Sprint" was at least 100 thousand times faster than the roughly 1 inch per year measured today and documented historically.  Try to visualize this "Continental Sprint"" (including a collision that formed the Himalayan Mountains), an Ice Age and other global phenomena all unfolding during the short time humans and all the animals were  migrating and repopulating the earth after Noah's flood -- around 1,000 years maximum. 

RodiniaLook at the diagram of Rodinia where, according to YECS leaders, Noah lived, and try to imagine where the miles of vertical sediments (alternating marine and terrestrial) came from that formed most of the geological formations on today's continents.  Water flows downhill, so all sediments (marine and terrestrial) must have come from areas on and around Rodinia much higher than where they were deposited.  Yet most of Rodinia's surface area became the cores of our modern continents which contain sedimentary deposits. 

I will leave it to your imagination to figure out where the miles of sediments originated and how all these events could have taken place in the space of a few months.  You can open a diagram of the the Colorado Plateau strata which provides just one example of the different, changing environments carefully preserved in the geologic record by the "Selective Sedimentary Sorting".  Try to picture the formation of these different strata in the chaotic conditions described by YECS leaders during and immediately after Noah's catastrophic flood.

Evidence that Homo habilis used tools, Homo erectus used tools and controlled fire and Neanderthals built homes, buried their dead, used tools and mastered fire have all been found with no evidence of flood deposition.  According to YECS explanations, these human-like creatures must have either been on the ark (or, as YECS articles have suggested recently, they descended from Noah and his family after the flood) and migrated to the regions where their remains have been found all within several thousand years - then they all went extinct. 
Early Neanderthal constructions in southwestern France, "Here we report the dating of annular constructions made of broken stalagmites found deep in Bruniquel Cave in southwest France."
Homo erectus, "There is fossil evidence that [Homo erectus] species cared for old and weak individuals. The appearance of Homo erectus in the fossil record is often associated with the earliest handaxes, the first major innovation in stone tool technology.."  Homo habilis, is one of the earliest members of the genus Homo, to use stone tools.
Early Human Culture/a>, "Paralleling the biological evolution of early humans was the development of cultural technologies that allowed them to become increasingly successful at acquiring food and surviving predators."
This story describes a piece of the evolution of evolutionary science.

"Human evolution is the lengthy process of change by which people originated from apelike ancestors. Scientific evidence shows that the physical and behavioral traits shared by all people originated from apelike ancestors and evolved over a period of approximately six million years."  This is an extensive resource of information from the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

As you read the YECS literature, notice that their explanations are based entirely on the necessity of proving a specific young earth conclusion based on a specific interpretation of Biblical passages, "God’s Word Is Our Ultimate Authority".  Consequently it doesn't matter to YECS leaders that neither Answers in Genesis nor any other group (nor any creation "scientist") has been able to provide any testable, natural explanations (hypotheses) to explain all of the actual physical evidence in the context of Noah's flood and the so-called "Continental Sprint" belief - yet the explanation of actual evidence using natural causes is a critical requirement of any legitimate scientific theory

The AIG statement quoted above, "Conclusions depend on starting assumptions"", demonstrates that YECS leaders have no understanding of how scientific hypotheses are formed and tested.  In fact, hypotheses depend on starting assumptions, but valid Conclusions depend on the impartial application and interpretation of scientific observations and/or experiments to prove the hypotheses.  In contrast, all BiasScience conclusions are based entirely on starting assumptions - that is precisely why they are biased. 

There are monumental problems with trying to explain all of the geological evidence on the earth which YECS beliefs attribute to formation during and immediately after the year-long flood 4,300 years ago.  As described in the Continuous Timeline section, YECS explanations of the formation of the Grand Canyon and the White Cliffs of Dover, completely fail to provide a comprehensive description of how all of the evidence in these areas (not to mention the rest of the earth) can be explained by natural processes operating during a single catastrophic flood. 

Natural ArchesAs I was writing this section another type of natural phenomena came to mind - naturally carved arches found all over the world.  Go to a search engine, look up "natural arches" and "natural sandstone formations".  Then select the images option and scroll through the remarkable pictures of these natural stone sculptures.  Now, imagine how these structures could have formed within the constraints of the YECS flood and post-flood model.  Sedimentary formations will be discussed in the next section, but here are a few problems I see with the YECS 'geological' explanations.

There would have been miles-thick layers of newly formed mud, silt and sand sediments deposited within a few months followed immediately by processes that formed mountains and removed layers of sediment to form today's surface geology which includes massive, winding canyons, the remarkable carved surface sculptures, exposed petrified forests and surface salt domes, to name a few.  There are absolutely no known examples, or even speculated mechanism, that can describe how (under the Flood Geology scenario) any of these structures found today in the topmost, exposed flood layers could have possibly been formed by any known processes of evaporation, rock formation or erosional events. 

Request specific evidence.  Ask YECS 'geologists' to walk you through exactly how these structures were formed (from the sediment source, to the sorted deposition process, to the formation of rock from mud,  to the exposed rock formations seen today), and provide proof that all natural processes have been demonstrated to be possible.  Remember, after the flood, all these surface layers would be recently deposited mud, silt and sand.  YECS advocates will claim that the sediments all transformed/a> into solid rock (diagenesis) during the last half of Noah's flood, but they can provide no proof that this could possibly happen as a result of completely natural processes. 

In addition to asking exactly how the surface changed virtually overnight from soggy sedimentary layers to rock layers, ask them to show you modern examples of sand dunes, dry lakes, flood deposits or marine environments that are turning into exposed sandstone (example 1 example 2, ), chalk (example), shale (example 1, example 2), chert (example), or limestone (example 1 & YECS explanation, example 2).  If layers of these rocks can form naturally in a few months on a global scale by any natural process, it should be relatively easy to find modern examples or conduct experiments that would validate the YECS claims of rapid formation of these sedimentary layers.

As in other YECS attempts to fit the evidence into their model, if you carefully read their explanations you will discover that they actually try to explain only small pieces of the global puzzle.  Most effort is devoted to trying to discredit all evolutionary theories and any explanations that have been developed by the majority of scientists to fit into the overall picture of evolutionary history as described on my Cosmic Calendar Timeline page. 

Over and over in the Creation literature you will read that an unproven YECS speculation disproves an accepted scientific conclusion.  That is ironic, because disproof of any recognized scientific explanations in no way automatically validates the Young Earth Creation model - all evidence must independently clearly support all Creationist explanations for them to be legitimate science.
The Grand Canyon, Monument to an Ancient Earth, The Grand Canyon and Creation Science, Grand Canyon Creation

100 Reasons the Earth is Old, The Impossible Voyage of Noah's Ark,Marsupial Distribution Refutes YECism, Problems with a Global Flood, Skeptic's Dictionary, Noah's ark, The Defeat of Flood Geology by flood Geology, Can Creationism Be Scientific?, Evidence against a recent creation, Oard's Moonbeam, 15 Answers to Creationist Nonsense, Frequently Asked But Never Answered Questions, Evidence of Evolution PBS Evolution Library, "Soft Tissue" found in Dinosaur Bones, "Young earth creationists have widely cited these findings of soft tissue as evidence that dinosaur fossils cannot really be millions of years old, and so the rock layers (radioactively dated to more than 65 million years of age) cannot really be millions of years old --- and so the entire old-earth dating edifice collapses."  This is just one of the invented problems with evolutionary theory.
Problems With "Flood" Geology - A detailed compilation problems of YECS explanations by Wilfred Elders, "...many large deposits of conglomerate lie on top of great thicknesses - often several miles - of fine-grained sedimentary rock. ...What purely natural processes would enable the Flood to deposit a thickness of several miles of fine-grained sediments first, and then place the boulder-laden conglomerates on top? Above all, there is the fact that the boulders inside conglomerate often contain fossils. How did they get there if, as Flood geologists assert, fossils are the remains of creatures that died in the Flood?"

Sedimentary Sequences and other Continuous Timeline Evidence

No natural, consistent, comprehensive Young Earth Creation Science (YECS) hypotheses have been proposed to explain the vast amount of existing continuous timeline evidence (evidence that accumulates sequentially over time in relatively stable environments) in the context of a catastrophic global flood 4,300 years ago.  The flood would have "reset the clock" for all of the following natural historic processes.  Continuous Timeline processes create observable evidence that can be measured, compared to modern examples and apparently require hundreds to many thousands of years to form. 

It is important to understand the fact that, just because the YECS explanations state that these methods of dating are flawed and worthless, does NOT mean that assessment is valid.  Many of the dating methods can be independently confirmed by other methods.  YECS leaders can demonstrate no processes at work today that prove all natural evidence proves a young earth, and they have no credible, testable alternative hypotheses to replace the long-timeline theories.  As you read YECS explanations, keep in mind the vast amount of evidence worldwide that must be explained in the context of the proposed global flood - not just small, isolated pieces of evidence discussed by YECS leaders.  If any one of these interlinked chains of mainstream scientific evidence provide even remotely valid and accurate dates, all of the YECS conclusions are false.

Consider what would be required for every one of these examples of measurable evidence of the passage of long periods of time to not only fail in the context of providing evolutionary proof but instead support the YECS assumptions.  Every one of the current scientific theories would not only need to be proven wrong, but new theories would need to be constructed for each example that would conclusively demonstrate consistent proof of the specific YECS chronology of almost instantaneous evolution.

Consider the specific obvious problems which can be easily demonstrated by a very superficial examination of YECS claims.  The greater one's understanding of the evidence and the science involved in evaluating that evidence, the the greater the number of problems with YECS explanations that become apparent.

Genetics

As described in the Animal Diversity and Distribution section, the most current YECS explanations require a "Genetic Sprint" unlike anything seen or imagined today to cause the remarkably rapid and diverse speciation that would enable dozens of species alive today (along with many extinct species) to evolve from each of the the animal "Kinds" that survived the global flood on Noah's ark.

A few decades ago the main pieces of evidence of relationships among different species of living organisms were their physical and behavioral characteristics and where they lived.  YECS alternatives to mainstream theories were fairly easy to concoct.  With advances in genetics and the ability to sequence and compare DNA from different species, and individuals within species, a more detailed picture of relationships among living organisms has evolved.  YECS explanations must now constantly address new genetic evidence that makes specific relationships among animals and plants easier to detect and evolving techniques that allow specific genetic changes at the molecular level easier to identify and track. 

YECS leaders are constantly scrambling to provide alternative explanations for an ever increasing, more detailed body of evidence that supports specific genetic relationships among living organisms and evolutionary change over long periods of time instead of several thousand years.  I  predict that YECS leaders will be driven to reject genetics entirely as a legitimate scientific discipline as processes are refined to follow the evolution of specific, individual genetic sequences among individuals within and between living and many extinct species.

The AIG article, Getting enough Genetic Diversity by Nathaniel Jeanson makes several claims, "When God created the nuclear DNA in Adam and Eve, He created it in two copies as 23 paired chromosomes. Even though Adam and Eve did not have human parents from which to inherit two copies, it is likely that God created their two nuclear DNA sequences different from one another. In other words, Adam’s first set of 3 billion DNA letters would have contained a certain sequence, and his second set of 3 billion Genetic Diversity in AfricaDNA letters would have contained a different sequence—with perhaps 5-10 million differences between the two sets.  This would allow them to be fruitful, multiply, and produce diverse offspring --- instead of producing clones." and concludes, " With millions of DNA differences --- massive amounts of DNA variety --- encoded into each kind from the start of their existence, the potential for speciation is mind-boggling. Combined with the fact that species can recover enormous population sizes in very short amounts of time, in addition to the fact that the vast majority of DNA sequences within a creature appear to be functional, these results demonstrate that millions of species in a few thousand years is not only plausible, it is also probable. ... Once the animals stepped off the Ark, their reservoir of DNA differences could have easily translated into a massive amount of morphological change."  This alleged "reservoir of DNA differences" in humans or other animals is a completely illogical, improbable, implausible and unsupported explanation as described below.

Another AIG article concludes, "The real geographic origin of all modern humans is Babel, according to Scripture. The high variation in African DNA probably means that the majority of human families coming out of Babel went south and settled in Africa. To be sure, other families settled in other locations, as the Table of Nations indicates (Genesis 10), but the majority of DNA diversity in that Babel population went south."

Jeanson either deliberately or naively confuses genetic variations between maternal and paternal genes of an organism (which has little to do with speciation) and genetic diversity within an entire breeding population (the gene pool which provides the variety required for speciation).  Jeanson's claim above that Adam's (and presumably Eve's) DNA might have contained "perhaps 5-10 million  differences between the two sets" of chromosomes is completely misleading, and it misrepresents diversity as it plays out in animal speciation.

A brief introduction to some basic genetic facts:

What is the genetic evidence for human evolution? "In the last couple of decades, our understanding of genetics has grown dramatically, providing overwhelming evidence that humans share common ancestors with all life on earth. Here are some of the main types of genetic evidence for common ancestry, [Genetic Diversity, Genetic 'scars' & Genetic synonums]."
Human Chromosome 2 is a fusion of two ancestral chromosomes: "All great apes apart from man have 24 pairs of chromosomes. There is therefore a hypothesis that the common ancestor of all great apes had 24 pairs of chromosomes and that the fusion of two of the ancestor's chromosomes created chromosome 2 in humans. The evidence for this hypothesis is very strong." (Wikipedia)
Scientists Analyze Chromosomes 2 and 4: "In the latest analysis, researchers searched the chromosome's DNA sequence for the relics of the center (centromere) of the ape chromosome that was inactivated upon fusion with the other ape chromosome. They subsequently identified a 36,000 base pair stretch of DNA sequence that likely marks the precise location of the inactived centromere. That tract is characterized by a type of DNA duplication, known as alpha satellite repeats, that is a hallmark of centromeres. In addition, the tract is flanked by an unusual abundance of another type of DNA duplication, called a segmental duplication. "These data raise the possibility of a new tool for studying genome evolution. We may be able to find other chromosomes that have disappeared over the course of time by searching other mammals' DNA for similar patterns of duplication," said Richard K. Wilson, Ph.D., director of the Washington University School of Medicine's Genome Sequencing Center and senior author of the study."
How Similar is Similar? - A discussion on how genetic differences are misused by YECS publications.

This article on Super-Speed Evolution concludes, "As I have pointed out many times in the past, good theories generally help to explain data rather than create more problems.  Every time YECs try to provide a solution to a particular problem, in the case the problem of too many species to fit on the ark, they end up creating a large number of problems. They have now been forced to accept a form of super-accelerate evolution by genetic sorting and strong natural selection while at the same time suggesting that natural selection doesn't work. They are saying that intermediate fossils must exist while deny that they exist.  Welcome to the wild and confusing world of creation science."

The Universe and the Speed of Light

Crab NebulaNo natural, comprehensive scientific theories have been proposed by Young Earth Creation Science (YECS) leaders to explain the formation and distribution of over a trillion galaxies containing an estimated 100 billion stars each, apparently spread over billions of light years in a nearly 14 billion year old universe.  Light we can detect today from the center of the Milky Way galaxy started on its journey about 26,000 years ago.  If the Andromeda galaxy (the Milky Way's nearest galactic neighbor) is visible tonight, you will see light that started its journey 2.2 million years ago. 

No natural theories have been proposed by YECS leaders to explain the existence of incredibly diverse and dynamic cosmic events like the occasional novae and supernovas.  The Crab Nebula/a>, for example, is the glowing remnant of a star some 6,500 light years distant that exploded about 7,500 years ago.  After traveling for about 6,500 years the light from the explosion reached earth in AD 1054 and, was recorded by Chinese astronomers as a "guest star" that was brighter than anything in the night sky except the moon, and probably visible during the day. 

An explanation provided by Answers in Genesis states, "The earth and all the stars in the universe did not originate in a big bang; they were created independently and on different days. On the first day, God created the universe containing no stars, but only the earth. Only on the fourth day --- when plants already existed --- the stars and other planets were created. Thus, all stars are of the same age, excluding the three creation days."  There is absolutely no method provided to support these claims except, "God created..."  As noted, this belief could certainly be true, but there is absolutely no way this belief can be considered scientific, and it does not explain how a star that apparently exploded before the formation of the universe could be seen over 1,000 years ago.  Over 80 novae have been recorded since the 1600s.  Over 30 supernovae have been recorded, many in other galaxies.

YECS leaders try to explain this problem by constructing elaborate theories like the "a href="https://answersingenesis.org/astronomy/starlight/anisotropic-synchrony-convention-distant-starlight-problem/" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">anisotropic synchrony convention" (a hypothesis that light travels toward an observer infinitely fast) developed by Dr. Jason Lisle where, "...we find that an observer-centric anisotropic synchrony convention eliminates the distant starlight problem by reducing radially inward-directed light travel-time in the reference frame of the observer to zero. Such a convention implies that everything in the universe has an age of a few thousand years as we currently see it."  Dr. Danny R. Faulkner discusses several other proposed YECS solutions and presents his own hypothesis, "As a part of God's formative work, light from the astronomical bodies was miraculously made to “shoot” its way to the earth at an abnormally accelerated rate in order to fulfill their function of serving to indicate signs, seasons, days, and years. ...it is likely space itself that has rapidly moved, and that the speed of light since Creation Week has been what is today."  Some other YECS proposals to explain the apparent size and age of the universe.
Detailed discussions of problems with Dr. Lisle's hypothesis can be read here, here and here.  The bottom line is that Lisle's speculation has absolutely no observational or experimental confirmation or plausibility and Faulkner's explanation is not even remotely scientific.

    Copyright  2005, Randy Johnson. All rights reserved. Top Updated March 2017