Life Forms Just Before End of Ice Age
and After Seven Days of Genesis
Your attention is called to the particular phrasing "after their kind" and "after his kind" throughout the narrative of Genesis chapter one. When the Lord God made the new world on the face of the old Earth during those seven days, the Scriptures seem to tell us that He filled the new world with many of the same KINDS of plants and animals that had been on the face of the Earth previously. Many were not replaced after their kind, however, but new ones were introduced in their place.
The geologic time frame preceding the six days of Genesis correlates roughly with the end of the great "Ice Age" at the Pleistocene/Holocene epoch boundary, which dates to about 13,000 - 10,000 radio carbon (C14 ) years before present (BP = "1950"). As mentioned previously, the geologic record reveals a mass extinction episode at this time in which hundreds of large and unusual forms of megafauna mysteriously perished from the face of the Earth. Gone are the Mammoths, Mastodons, giant ground sloth, woolly rhinos, rats the size of dogs, armadillos the size of Volkswagens, and about 200 other known species, including some very weird-looking creatures that raise thoughts of radioactive mutations. They all disappeared geologically recently, by the end of the Ice Age. Their replacement "kinds" of today's world are quite different in both size and morphology.
The leading scientific theory was that humans hunted these animals to extinction, but that theory is losing favor for lack of direct evidence.
(Top-half of composite Graphic base image [lef] from "Meteorology Today" by C. Donald Ahrens ?1994 West Publishing Co.)
Two important things should be noted from this composite graphic which shows the Earth's average atmospheric temperature (top part) and volcanic activity markers (bottom part) for the past 18,000 years BP.
1): There is a pronounced increase in indications of volcanic activity between the time when the megafauna extinctions begin (about 14,000 BP) that ends just slightly before the date of the regeneration of the heavens and earth (about 6,000 years ago- Genesis 1:2).
2): The end of the extinction phase terminates in a relatively sudden and dramatic drop in global temperatures, marked by the Younger-Dryas cooling event.
Clearly, the data indicate there were rapid temperature changes, an onset of intensive geologic activity, and probably changes in the levels of solar activity at this point in Earth's history. The latter fact is supported by reported fluctuations in radiocarbon concentrations in the Younger-Dryas cold period between 12,700 and 11,500 years BP. In sum, this was anything but a normal pattern of events.
Why would so many animals perish at one time (at the END of the Ice Age, when things were warming up) after surviving several thousand years through the harsh glacial conditions in the Pleistocene epoch? The scientific community is greatly divided on the issue. Some hold that they were killed off by "man" for food, by disease, their inability to adapt to a changing post-glacial climate, or some combination of all. This form of causal reasoning precipitates from a uniformitarian paradigm that is colored by our culture's preoccupation with political correctness and environmental issues like Global Warming.
Now a new theory on the cause of the Megafauna extinctions may hold the answer. Abundant tiny particles of diamond dust have been found in sediments dating to 12,900 years ago at six North American sites. This adds strong evidence for Earth's impact with a rare swarm of carbon-and-water-rich comets or carbonaceous chondrites, precipitating the Younger-Dryas. Here are a few links to recent reports concerning the effects of the Younger-Dryas event: Diamonds suggest comets caused killer cold spell - Comprehensive analysis of impact spherules supports theory of cosmic impact 12,800 years ago - New evidence that cosmic impact caused Younger Dryas extinctions.
Needless to say, the Biblical notion of a universal catastrophic destruction of all living things in the recent past and a Supernatural regeneration of the world by the Lord God is not something many men and women of science today would ever consider. So expect even more new theories to emerge as scientists continue to wrestle with this problem.
Would it not seem logical that a global event of this magnitude and severity, which wiped out the giant mammals, would also wipe out the humanoids that hunted them? Could a population of nomadic hunters quickly switch to an agriculturally sustained society, especially at a time when the Earth's average temperatures had plummeted sharply? I don't think so.
Keep in mind that according to the Bible, Adam and his linage began as tillers of the soil and herdsmen after Adam's fall. The first indication of hunting does not appear in the Bible until after Noah's flood. (See Nimrod, Genesis 10:9.) Consequently, if the Paleoclimate data are valid, and the Biblical time line of Adam and modern mankind is valid, then we must conclude it was not the descendants of Adam and Eve who hunted the now extinct mammoths. Those who did so were a race of manlike beings which were on the Earth before Adam and Eve; the Pre-Adamite race of hominids, not made in the "image of God," a fact which begs the question, in whose image were they made?
With the advent of the science of DNA testing, the supporting proof for this incredible hypothesis is coming to light, much to the consternation of the evolutionary uniformitarian school of human origins. For example, DNA testing of Neanderthal remains clearly shows that modern man is NOT descended from the Neanderthal. The DNA from three (3) different sets of Neanderthal remains showed that there is no genetic link between modern man and the Neanderthal. More recent studies of Neanderthal DNA and Neanderthal Skull Characteristics further confirm this finding. This is forcing the evolutionists to start looking even further back in the fossil record for a common "ancestor" or "missing link" branch from the primates. They won't find it. And guess what? They just identified ANOTHER one!
Recently the remains of an "anatomically modern human" (Cro-Magnon) found in Australia have revealed that it was at least 60,000 years old and had a mitochondria DNA generic marker which is now extinct. That is, nobody today is descended from that particular line of beings, at least on the female side. This find has raised serious debate between the "Out of Africa" and "Regional Continuity" evolutionary camps. Will future testing of other Cro-Magnon remains reveal similar DNA surprises? If the Bible is true, then the prediction is that they will.
Although there have been relatively recent reports of finding Neanderthal DNA segments in the DNA of some of the Earth's modern human population, this does not conclusively prove that Neanderthals and modern man mated sometime in the past. There is another plausible Biblical explanation concerning the exploits of the fallen angels (see: Genesis 6:2-6:4 & Daniel 2:43). Angels always appear as men throughout the Bible. And in order to create any offspring with human women they too must have unique DNA. If Genesis 6:2-4 is indicative of such behavior in Noah's days, and Daniel 2:43 hints of the same such behavior in more recent times (or the near future), then it is a stretch to assume those same "sons of God" could have been up to those same tricks with the bipedal biologics that inhabited the old world?
Evolutionary mainline science still cannot provide a fully satisfactory answer to origins of modern man. As the tools of science improve (e.g., DNA analysis) the mysteries only become more mysterious as is demonstrated by the above cases. Reasoning from a uniformitarian paradigm, and in reference to the above-cited pro and con cases of DNA connections to present humans, secular scientists will say that this only means those particular lines of humans must have been a branch of mankind that perished. They would have to make the claim that, as Evolutionary "theory" demands, that there was continuity of the human race. However, the link between the evidence from the past and present is still yet to be "scientifically" established. In fact, evolutionary research is finding just the opposite. Today scientists are claiming that human evolution has greatly accelerated, particularly since about 10,000 years ago. The truth is there are big morphological differences between "modern man" and "primitive man," and pronouncing a sudden acceleration of evolution is their only way of explaining the findings within the accepted evolutionary paradigm. The Bible has a better answer: Modern man is a new creation.
In another study that compared Neanderthal and modern human bone structures with those of the earliest members of the genus Homo, it was found that Neanderthals were a more 'normal' match than modern humans. This is just one more bit of accumulating data that supports the suggestion that modern humans are NOT descended from evolutionary ancestors; that modern man is a unique and a special creation, just as the Bible states.
The concisely parsed words of the Holy Bible say that there is a gap, or discontinuity, between the ancient world of the past (which included the Neanderthal) and the present world of modern man. The very existence of such a gap in the Genesis narrative is the unifying factor between the Bible narrative and all available empirical data. Specifically, ALL life on the planet perished near the Younger-Dryas marker, the planet was lifeless for a brief period, and then in a special Creative event (the 7 days of Genesis) the Lord God restored the Creation and made the world of true Man, Adam. Without knowledge that a "gap" existed, mainline science assumes that there was a continuum of life and attempts to fill in the blanks with the available evidence.
For review purposes, here is the Biblical sequence of events:
1) In Genesis 1:1 we have a general proclamation by the Spirit that God created the heaven and the earth. It did not evolve and achieve self-conscience awareness. God made it. He made it to be inhabited (Isaiah 45:18). Exactly when in time it was first created and inhabited is not revealed in the Scriptures.
2) In Genesis 1:2 we find the Earth in ruin, in darkness, and in the waters, which indicate a state of ruin and destruction but, nonetheless, the Earth. Waters and darkness are already there before God says, "..Let there be light." Exactly how long it was in that state is also not revealed by the Scriptures. However, the data from the Greenland ice sheet alone (which will be discussed in a later chapter) confirms that the Earth had already been around for at least 110,000 years. The rest of the Earth's geology reveals an even more ancient age.
3) In Genesis 1:3 we have the Lord God making a new world out of the ruins and restoring the face of the Earth and the functioning of the heavens.
Before dismissing this scenario as science fiction or Creationist pseudo-science, let's put this time in the Earth's geologic history into perspective in relation to the remarkable set of coincidental historical findings that date to the same period of time near the end of the last Ice Age, the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary:
a. This was the time when the long period of the Ice Ages abruptly ended and the Earth's climate suddenly warmed up considerably.
b. This was the time when Neanderthal vanished and Modern man appeared.
c. If "man" has been evolving for a couple of million years, and there were "modern humans" 60,000 years ago, why did it take him so long to develop things like city states, agriculture, arts, writing, structured social order, all of which only go back about 6,000 years?
d. Why did a few hundred very hardy species of megafauna, which had survived through the bitter conditions of the entire Pleistocene epoch, suddenly die off when things were just warming up?
e. Why is there global evidence of great volcanic activity in the late Pleistocene (including massive flood basalts), and why is there evidence of great tidal waves and vast animal death deposits in high mountain regions?
Is it just coincidence that all these things seem to have a common nexus in time? I don't believe so. All the facts and coincidences seem to point to a cataclysmic end of the old world at the end of the Pleistocene epoch, and this lends considerable support to the Bible's chronology of the seven days of Genesis and the special Creation of true Man.
Leaving behind the obscure and still mysterious events of the Pleistocene epoch and the geologic ages that came before it, let us now examine God's handiwork of the seven days of Genesis regeneration of life on the face of the Earth, according to the Bible. Since we have previously commented on the restored structure of the cosmos, we will now concentrate on the restoration of life forms on the planet's surface.
On the third day God replenished the Earth with vegetation:
"And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, [and] the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed [is] in itself, upon the earth: and it was so."
(Gen 1:11 KJV)
"And the earth brought forth grass, [and] herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed [was] in itself, after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good."
(Gen 1:12 KJV)
On the fourth day God made the sun, moon and stars from the ruins of the old cosmic order. The fact that the Bible says God made the vegetation on the third day and the sun on the fourth day causes Bible critics to point out that plants need sunshine to grow (photosynthesis), so the sequence can't possibly be true. Is this a mistake or is this unscientific? If the seven days of Genesis were literal 24-hour days, then there is no problem here. Since there were less than 24 hours between the placement of the vegetation (day 3) and the making of the sun (day 4), any farmer will tell you that all plants can survive 24 hours without any sunlight. This order (plants before sunshine) disallows the notions that the seven "days" are long periods of time or that the Genesis account roughly parallels the evolutionary record. It does neither. Think about that one.
On the fifth day He filled the oceans with fish and aquatic mammals and filled the skies with birds:
"And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good."
(Gen 1:20-21 KJV)
Note of Interest: The wording of the passage says that the birds in our present world came forth from the waters, NOT the land. This shows that modern birds are not the direct descendants of the dinosaurs. Latest study: Scientists say no evidence exists that therapod dinosaurs evolved into birds.
According to the fossil record, there have been life forms in the Earth's oceans for millions of years. Many are long since extinct and new kinds took their place over the geologic ages. There are also fish that scientists thought were long extinct, but which have been found alive in southern oceans. The Coelacanth is the best known example. However, scientists have recently compared the fins of a fossilized Coelacanth with those of ones recently caught off the coasts of Africa and Indonesia, hoping to demonstrate Evolutionary development in the species over time. Guess what? It turns out it is not really the same primitive fish! Yep, that old fellow too appears to have been made "after his kind", as well.
Although the void and dark Earth as found at Genesis 1:2 roughly correlates with the end of the "Ice Ages," we cannot be exactly sure when (before the seven days) all prior marine life forms perished. The most likely marker would again be the Younger-Dryas time frame discussed earlier, the same as when the last of the megafauna perished on land.
In His creative restocking of the oceans on that day, God saw fit to include a fish akin to the old Coelacanth kind along with other kinds of fish which had populated the Earth's seas in the times immediately prior to the old world's destruction. On the other hand, many other ancient marine species were not reintroduced in the reconstruction.
Then there is the sea creature that God created that was not made "after his kind" but was introduced new and unique to this creation - the "great" Whale.
And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
(Genesis 1:21 KJV)
Notice in the sentence structure of Genesis 1:21 that the creation of the "great whales" is set apart from the making of the rest of the sea creatures by a comma. Are the great whales a specific species of the whale like the gigantic Blue Whale, or is this a general reference to the suborder of Baleena or a particular size range? I'm not sure. There are small whales that look like dolphins like the Beluga Whale. And there is a larger animal we call a killer whale, or Orca, which is actually the largest dolphin. And then there is the "Whale Shark" which is not a mammal like the whale or dolphin (it is a really big fish). So the Biblical term "great whale" is somewhat ambiguous. Regardless, we can say with a high degree of confidence that according to the Bible, there are "great whales" swimming in today's oceans that where not on the Earth in the previous world.
At this juncture we should mention that there is a whale of a controversy these days about the evolution of the whale. Mainline science argues that the whale evolved from a wolf-like (some argue a hippopotamus-like) land creature and did so in a very accelerated period of time (about six million years) and very recently, geologically speaking. This is inconsistent (and just the opposite) of the evolutionary paradigm that all land creatures evolved from ancestors that originally came from the seas. Could it be that God's creation of the "great whales" threw such a monkey wrench into the fossil record of whale species that evolutionary scientists had to create a special rapid macro evolutionary scenario to explain the disconnect?
On the sixth day the Lord filled the new world with the land animals:
"And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good."
(Gen 1:24-25 KJV)
All these living creatures and the vegetation are said to be made "after their kind" or "after his kind," and there seems to be a great emphasis placed on that point in the narrative. Now (and this is VERY IMPORTANT) see what else the Lord God did NOT make "after his kind" - Man:
"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth."
(Gen 1:26 KJV)
This last use of the word "after" in relation to the creation of Man provides the true sense of interpretation of the word as used elsewhere in the Genesis narrative. If Man was made "after" God's likeness, the likeness of which was a pre-existing form or pattern, then this gives credibility to the notion that the vegetation and animals were made after the patterns of previously existing forms which were on the face of the Earth in the old world. This would explain the emphasis and number of references to "after his kind," much like the term "a thousand years" is stated and restated six times in Revelation chapter 20 to define the exact length of Christ's future Kingdom on the face of the Earth. Still, even after repeating the term "a thousand years" six times to make the point, amillennial and postmillennial eschatologists still overlook that truth.
It should also be pointed out that Man was the ONLY living thing in Genesis (other than the whale) that was NOT said to be made "after his kind"; therefore he was new and unique. That uniqueness was in respect to being made in the image of God, which is not a physical, bodily trait, but more of the soul and mind, although it could also be in respect to the form of the angels, which always appear as a man. And unlike all the other creatures God made during the seven days, only Man was told to "replenish" the Earth (Genesis 1:28), which indicates that Man, made in God's image, was to replace the humanoids of the old creation. These humanoids obviously had a physical form biologically very similar to true Man in physical structure, but not in mind and soul as defined being after Godís likeness."
"And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth."
(Genesis 1:28 KJV)
Summation: The truth of these passages and the emerging evidence affirms that true Modern Man is a newcomer to the face of this old planet. True Man, made in the image of God, has only been on the Earth about 6,000 years. He is a created creature, he did not evolve. Although he was preceded on the face of the Earth by lineages of humanoids of varying morphology closely approaching modern anatomical similarity, Adam and his descendants (us) are unique. That uniqueness is defined as creation in the "image of God," and that definition eludes scientific quantification.
In the next chapter we are going to critically examine the ongoing Creation vs. Evolution debate.
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