Skip to comments.The Draining Floodwaters: Geologic Evidence Reflects the Genesis Text
Posted on 01/13/2012 12:10:42 PM PST by fishtank
The Draining Floodwaters: Geologic Evidence Reflects the Genesis Text
by John D. Morris, Ph.D., & James J.S. Johnson, J.D., Th.D. *
Mainstream geology has long dismissed the idea that the earth was once subjected to a global flood that cataclysmically annihilated all land-dwelling, air-breathing life except for a remnant preserved in the Ark. In 1961, however, Drs. Henry Morris and John Whitcomb published The Genesis Flood, which examined the evidence and concluded that it affirms the accuracy and authority of the biblical account. Since that time, studies have continually confirmed that the geologic record aligns with the Bibles depiction of an earth-destroying flood.
The Genesis account of the global Flood succinctly describes stage after stage of that unique catastrophe. Genesis 8:3 summarizes the stage in which the floodwaters drained enough to allow Noahs Ark to rest on a mountainside. But while the waters were moving, they followed a remarkable rhythmic pattern of ocean-water movementspecifically a repetitious action that could be described as to and fro (or back and forth):
And the waters returned from off the earth continually: and after the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters were abated. (Genesis 8:3)
In the biblical Hebrew text, this verse reads as follows:
A few of these Hebrew words justify special scrutiny. The recession of the floodwaters is denoted by the verses first verb, vayyashûbû, which means and they returned. But who or what are they? (In other words, what returned in Genesis 8:3?) The second word in the sentence provides the answer: hamayim, the waters. The next two words, mê(al haaretz, translate as from upon the earth.
Thus, as the Floods globe-enveloping waters drained off the face of the earth, they were somehow returning to where they had originated, both the fountains of the great deep (Genesis 7:11) and the ocean basins.
The next two Hebrew words, halôkh vashûbh, provide a verbal picture of the draining waters swaying in a rhythmic mega-wave movement. Although the King James Version translates this two-word phrase with the one word continually, the Hebrew phrase contains more information than that. The Hebrew wording connotes the water motion as being continual, yet it also denotes a directional movement that matches the English phrases to and fro and back and forth. Specifically, the phrase halôkh vashûbh is a linkage of two Hebrew verb participles, one derived from the verb halak and the other derived from the verb shûb.
In the English language, the usual manner of producing a verb participle is to add ing to the verb basee.g., add-ing, subtract-ing, read-ing, listen-ing, etc. In the Hebrew phrase halôkh vashûbh, the va is a conjunction meaning and, so the literal idea of halôkh vashûbh is that the draining Flood waters were rhythmically halak-ing and shûb-ing.
What does it mean that the waters were halak-ing and shûb-ing? The answer to that question can be found by determining the basic meaning of the two root verbs, halak and shûb.
A review of the Old Testament Index-Lexicon in Youngs Analytical Concordance to the Bible (page 17) shows that the Hebrew verb halak is most typically translated as go (217x qal, 8x piel, 8x hithpael) and walk (110x qal, 32x hithpael), but also as come (16x qal) and similar words that involve travel-like directional movement. Youngs also shows that a similar Hebrew verb, yalak, is translated by comparable words, e.g., walk (123x qal) and go (630x qal) (page 53).1
Youngs indicates that the Hebrew verb shûb is most typically translated as return again (369x qal), come again (43x qal), turn again (40x qal), bring again (66x hiphil), and similar words that indicate a returning directional movement (page 47).1 Because both Hebrew verbs (halak and shûb) are participles, their combined action is a continuing actionthe waters are continually going and returning.
Thus, as the floodwaters were abating (i.e., draining), they were also continuing to move in a repetitive (perhaps rhythmic or wave-like) manner, going back and forth, to and fro, like the tides of the ocean.
A repetitive back-and-forth movement of floodwaters is the rock-solid evidence we observe in the geologic record of the Flood. The sedimentary rocks and fossils left in the floodwaters wake contain abundant evidence of the ocean-waters transgressing over the continents and then regressing back into the ocean. In fact, geologists have identified at least six separate worldwide transgression and regression sequences called megasequences preserved in the rock record.
The accompanying chart references the standard concept of geologic time, with the long-ago past at the bottom and the present at the top, with individual periods noted. This is thought to represent the period of time that complex life has existed on earth. Note that during the latter part of the Zuni Megasequence, the ocean level rapidly oscillated, yet it was coming and going throughout all periods.
Of course, recognizing that old-earth scenarios are hopelessly flawed,3,4 we would certainly disagree with the charts long time span of 600 million years, preferring instead to interpret the whole as the record of the great Flood of Noahs day. Moving upward, we see the bottom as the early Flood period, then the mid-Flood, the waning stages of the Flood, and the post-Flood time at the top. The Genesis 8:3 grounding occurred during the later Zuni, when floodwaters were at their maximum and then began to wane. Within the rising and maintaining Flood portions of the chart is where geologists have seen these six (maybe subdivided into more) megasequences. During the final drainage, the waters came and went with greater frequency.
Each of these sequences begins with a record of violent incursion of the ocean over the land, first depositing a basal coarse sand, then smaller grains, and then chemical precipitation as the energy levels lessened, ending with the water rushing back seaward with a mighty erosion episode. Each transgression landward followed each regression seaward in a continuous cycle of floods, until all was totally destroyed. These were not separate floods but one unimaginable super-flood, with repeated pulses of terror.
In the beginning, God created everything very good, with man as Gods caretaker over His creation (Genesis 1:26-31). Tragically, it wasnt long before man fully rejected the Creators authority and chose to disobey. But disobedience is sin, and the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23), and from that point forward all things began to die. Before long, sin dominated the earth to such an extent that the Creator decided to destroy sinful man and the tainted creation and start again with a remnant who would be spared. The primary purpose of the Flood was judgment of sin and its terrible effects.
Scripture doesnt give us all the details of the Flood events, but geology can fill in the blanks. Remember, Gods primary purpose for the great Flood was total annihilation of the continents and the life they held (Genesis 6:7).
The Flood involved much more than water flooding the land, standing above the mountains for a while, and then draining. Moving water contains much energy, while standing water does little work. God promised He was going to destroy the wicked, violent inhabitants of earth along with the earth, and super-powered cleansing floodwaterswashing back and forth across the landappear to be the tool God chose to accomplish it.
Young, R. 1980. Youngs Analytical Concordance to the Bible. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers. Sloss, L. L. 1963. Sequences in the cratonic interior of North America. Geologic Society of America Bulletin. 74: 93-114; Vail, P. R. and R. M. Mitchum, Jr. 1979. Global cycles of relative changes of sea level from seismic stratigraphy. American Association of Petroleum Geologists Memoir 29, 469-472. Morris, H. M. and J. C. Whitcomb. 1961. The Genesis Flood: The Biblical Record and Its Scientific Implications. Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company; Morris, J. 2007. The Young Earth, revised ed. Green Forest, AR: Master Books. Johnson, J. J. S. 2008. How Young Is the Earth? Applying Simple Math to Data Provided in Genesis. Acts & Facts. 37 (10): 4-5.
* Dr. Morris is President and Dr. Johnson is Associate Professor of Apologetics and Chief Academic Officer at the Institute for Creation Research.
Cite this article: Morris, J. and J. J. S. Johnson. 2012. The Draining Floodwaters: Geologic Evidence Reflects the Genesis Text. Acts & Facts. 41 (1): 12-13.
In the biblical Hebrew text, this verse reads as follows:
Illustration from the article.
Where did all that water go? Since everything was flooded, where did it drain?
Easy explanation, though we have no idea what the pre-flood world was like -
the surface of the earth was more uniform, the oceans not as deep.
Then, post flood, the water would recede into the now very deep oceans.
The mountains rose and the deep sea trenches sank. How deep is the ocean, 5 miles in places?
The water planet
I am certainly no expert but couldn’t god have made the sea floor heave enough that the ocean level would rise. I believe there is enough water in the oceans to cover the earth in that scenerio.
“Subterranean water is part of the earths resources. The total reserves of subterranean water exceed 60 million cu km. “
...and that is post-flood....
And how did we get left with salt deposits like we have at the Bonneville Salt Flats? If it was there before the flood, it should have dissolved in the floodwaters, and been carried away when they receeded.
Gen 10:25 "And unto Eber were born two sons: the name of one [was] Peleg; for in his days was the earth divided; and his brother's name [was] Joktan. "
Does Salt Come from Evaporated Sea Water?
by John D. Morris, Ph.D. *
Seawater contains a variety of salts, and when seawater evaporates, these solids are left behind. The most abundant salt in seawater is sodium chloride (NaC1) which will be referred to in this article simply as salt (technically it is called halite).
Layers of salt occur naturally in the geologic record, comprising an abundant source of salt for human consumption worldwide. Today, some salt deposits are land derived, as when salty water seeps from the rocks of Grand Canyon, evaporates and leaves a salty residue. Others are related to enclosed coastal lagoons, which fill up with seawater during a storm, but whose waters are trapped and evaporate between storms. Thus, salt deposits are classed as evaporites.
If a basin of seawater 100 feet thick were to evaporate, only about 2 feet of salt would be left behind. Can seawater evaporation account for all “evaporites”? If so, multiplied millions of years would be necessary for their build up, for some salt beds are extremely thick and wide. The salt deposits often occur in layers covering thousands of square miles with salt hundreds of feet thick.
Old earth uniformitarian thinking postulates an enclosed basin or coastal lagoon which repeatedly floods and evaporates over long periods of time, allowing thick deposits of salt to build up. The mind boggles at huge basins undergoing identical cycles of flooding and evaporation uncountable times, all the while remaining in the same location for millions and millions of years. By contrast, modern lagoons fill in, migrate, erodethere is no long-term stability for coastal features.
The regionally extensive salt beds in the geologic record are quite different from evaporites forming today. Seawater contains many chemical and mineral impurities as well as both single-celled and multi-celled plants and animals and any exposed dry lagoon will be an active life zone. Thus, modern evaporites are quite impure. But the major salt deposits in the geologic record are absolutely pure salt! Salt mines simply crush it and put it on the store shelf. Surely these large, pure salt beds are not evaporated seawater. Some other process must have formed them.
As with many features in geology, catastrophic views are replacing the old, impotent uniformitarian ones. Many have observed that the large salt accumulations occur in basins formed by major tectonic downwarping, often associated with ancient volcanic eruptions. The evidence does not fit with the idea of a trapped lagoon. Where are the fossils? Where are the impurities?
Many now think the salt was extruded in superheated, supersaturated salt brines from deep in the earth along faults. Once encountering the cold ocean waters, the hot brines could no longer sustain the high concentrations of salt, which rapidly precipitated out of solution, free of impurities and marine organisms.
The great Flood of Noah’s day provides the proper context. During the Flood, great volumes of magma, water, metals, and chemicals, were extruded onto the surface from the depths of the earth, as the “fountains of the great deep” (Genesis 7:11) spewed forth hot volcanic materials. Today we find them (especially salt) interbedded with Flood sediments, just as the “Back to Genesis” model predicts.
* Dr. Morris is President of the Institute for Creation Research.
Cite this article: Morris, J. 2002. Does Salt Come from Evaporated Sea Water? Acts & Facts. 31 (11).
From the article:
“Once encountering the cold ocean waters, the hot brines could no longer sustain the high concentrations of salt, which rapidly precipitated out of solution, free of impurities and marine organisms.”
A WIPP site geologist told me that the huge underground salt deposit near Carlsbad, NM is pristine in the uniformity of the salt content.
At places like Bonneville, the salt is not "interbedded with Flood sediments". It's just salt, and it's out in the open. If it was exposed to water (especially superheated water) it would have dissolved.
Here is a great website that gives the BEST explanation for the how the world flooded & the aftermath.
Great post: bump
LOL I always wondered if the devil could have planted bones.
Is that real or is it suppose to be satire of some sort
I guess if you have to ask, it doesn’t matter...
Before you ask that question, you have to ask where all the rain came from. And once you answer that question then you have the answer as to where it went and how it left..........
It can work for both sides, can it not?