104) Geological Evidence For A Catastrophic Flood

Geology provides the crucial second evidence for Noah’s flood. This is demonstrated in terms of

  • convergent validity where the biblical record correlates closely with other, in this case geological, records,
  • and predictive validity, for predicting future occurrences, since the written prediction is backed up by the geological record of multiple previous occurrences.

There is, significantly, both documented and geological evidence of the catastrophic formation of the Great Rift Valley during historic times.

This statement is based on the premise that the biblical data provided to locate Eden necessarily references geographical and political features known to the people for whom it was written, that is, the people inhabiting both the pre- and post- world-wide flood topography. It is reasonable to conclude that historic documents detailing the pre-flood world were preserved through the Flood and used by later writers to compile what we know as the first six chapters of the book of Genesis.

The second premise is that Eden is not the name of the garden, but a much wider territory in which the garden was located.

he term “Middle-earth” was not invented by J.R.R. Tolkien. Rather, it comes from…the Old English word middangeard (geard not meaning ‘Earth’, but rather ‘enclosure’ or ‘place’…It is Germanic for what the Greeks called the οικουμένη (oikoumenē) or “the abiding place of men”, the physical world as opposed to the unseen worlds…

In ancient Germanic and mythology, the universe was believed to consist of…interconnected physical worlds.

  1. The world of Men, the Middle-earth, lay in the centre of this universe.
  2. The lands of Elves, [righteous angels] gods [fallen angels], and Giants [demi-gods] lay across an encircling sea [consistent with the biblical sea above the firmament]
  3. The land of the Dead lay beneath the Middle-earth [consistent with the biblical account]
  4. A rainbow bridge, Bifrost Bridge, extended from Middle-earth to Asgard across the sea. [The third heaven, where the biblical God dwells].
  5. An outer sea encircled the seven other worlds (VanaheimAsgardAlfheimSvartalfheimMuspellheimNiflheim, and Jotunheim). [Consistent with the multiverse concept of contemporary physics, and multiple iterations of this world in the Bible.]

Middle-earth is transparently the equivalent of the biblical Eden centered on the original single land mass, Pan-gea.

And the LORD God planted

  1. a garden
  2. eastward in Eden [which therefore a much bigger area than just the garden]
  3. And a river went out of [a western area of] Eden to water the garden
  4. and from thence [once out of the large territory of Eden] it was parted, and became into four head[water]s. (Genesis 2:8,10)
Call me crazy, but I’m assuming that the geographical reference is included because it was meaningful at least to the first readers of this account. These would be the hordes of people Moses had just led out of Egypt, which is dated about 1,000 years after the flood of Noah.

Therefore the premise is that long after the post-flood world the inhabitants of this region could still recognize the geological features being named.

Today we can’t find one river parting into four separate rivers within in the biblical lands. This would be due to geographical features being altered by massive hydrolic and tectonic forces, occurring as aftershocks even after Moses recorded known landmarks and names for these rivers 1,000 years after the Flood.

This is validated by geological science which has located tectonic activity at these sites.

african20rift20valley20map

The Great Rift, which begins in Syria between the Lebanon [Mountains] and Anti-Lebanon [Mountains], runs along the Jordan Valley, the Dead Sea, the Arabah, the Aqaba gulf, the Red Sea, and continues through the continent of Africa as far as Zimbabwe, is generally regarded as the product of a grandiose revolution in the shell of the Earth

Prehistoric man witnessed the latest phases of widespread tectonic movements which convulsed East Africa and provoked great subsidences [lowering of the land] (of as much as 1500 feet or more)…modifying notably the courses of the rivers [emphasis added]…along the entire length of the Rift.

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The deepest place in the Rift on land is [not in Africa despite the looks of it as shown in the photo above, but] the valley of the Jordan and the Dead Sea. It appears that the catastrophe which originated the Dead Sea  caused also the origin of the Great Rift.

When Abram first entered the land of Canaan, about 500 years after the flood, “all the plain of Jordan was well watered every where…as thou comest unto Zoar [southern border of the plain]…before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah,

And the plain of Jordan was also called the vale of Siddim notorious for slime pits.

an international team of scientists has been drilling beneath the [Dead] seabed to extract a record of climate change and earthquake history…

The Dead Sea sits in the largest and deepest basin in the world.The scientists chose to drill at its center because they assumed that the sediment that had accumulated there had always been under water, the better preserved for having never been exposed to the atmosphere…

{But] the wildly varying layers of salt and mud represented dry periods and wet ones, respectively. A tiny fragment of wood, which Mr. Lazar said he was guarding like gold, was found…

The gravel [is] similar to that found today on the shores of the Sinai Peninsula

There was a momentary hint of another mystery…a temperature of 104 degrees inside pipes about 1,300 feet down, a finding much higher than expected…

The reading gave rise to thoughts of volcanic activity, right in the area where Sodom and Gomorrah…described in Genesis as having been destroyed by God with fire and brimstone.

“the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven; And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground…and, lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace.” (Genesis 19:24-28)

Of the six types of volcanic activity, a Stromboli eruption best fits the description with only small chunks of lava, collectively called tephra, of spatter, scoria, lava bombs,  ash; and small lava flows. This contrasts with massive lava flows of, essentially, melted glass, as occurred at Mount St. Helens which obliterated everything in its path, or explosions of superheated gases and ash as occurred at Vesuvius. One of the least violent of types volcanic explosions, they are nonetheless lethal near inhabited areas.

As you might expect, the Stromboli type of volcano is named after an Italian volcano, which is known to have been continuously active for at least 2,000 years of documented records, who knows how long in records since lost.

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It is without question that the Jordan river valley lines up with a known cause of volcanic activity.

Tectonic-map-of-Saudi-Arabia-and-surroundings-after-Johnson-1998

Exactly what causes the Stromboli volcanic activity.

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Beyond the Red Sea, which stretches for several hundred kilometers and has not a single affluent / inlet river, the aquatic life of the African lakes and rivers belongs to the so-called Ethiopian zoogeographical region / plate[SO!] According to Annandale the explanation of the Ethiopian [African plate affinity / presence of the fish fauna of the Jordan is that the Jordan formed at one time merely part of a river system that ran down the Great Rift Valley. The Jordan was one branch of this huge river system, the chain of lakes in East Africa represents the other; [emphasis added] and together they opened [past tense] into the Indian Ocean…” (3

Whatever the structural changes of the earth in the catastrophes before that which I describe here, there must have been some time when the Jordan streamed into the valley of Sittim (the name of the plain before the Dead Sea originated) and continued into the Mediterranean, most probably through the Jezreel Valley.

1.16-3d-view-northeast

Legendary reminiscences from the patriarchal age indicate that the Jordan existed before the Dead Sea came into being.(4)It appears that the coming out of Paddan-aram to Canaan required the passage of a river. Today the way from Palestine to the north does not require the crossing of water. But if the Jordan did flow through the Esdraelon Valley into the Mediterranean, it had to flow in a direction opposite [northwest] to the one in which it flows today [southeast].

Does there exist any reminiscence about the Jordan changing the direction of its flow?

An inscription of Thutmose I reads: “Frontier northern [of Egypt], as far as that inverted water which goeth down in going up [emphasis added].”…The river that reversed its direction is the Jordan…

Even under normal weather and tidal conditions rivers don’t stay fixed in place or even maintain their flow in the same direction, any more than the nations, so we shouldn’t expect to find them now, exactly as described then, diverging from one common source and going in the same direction on current world maps. But that is not to say we can’t figure out where they used to be from the clues provided in Genesis 2:11-14.

“The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold…bdellium and the onyx stone…”

Pison has no collateral information in the concordance, so no help there. Apparently it disappeared from biblical history early on. We can only look for guidance to the second clue provided – the ancient national founder Havilah, grandson of Ham, son of Cush, nephew to Mizraim, the ancient namesake founder of Egypt.

the sons of Ishmael…by their towns, and by their castles; twelve princes according to their nations…dwelt from Havilah unto Shur, that is before Egypt, as thou goest toward Assyria:” (Genesis 25:16-18)

So ancient Havilah consisted of a territory beginning at Egypt’s boundary, going eastward to Assyria. When we fit this geographical puzzle piece into the gap left by the other known settled territories such as the land of Canaan, the land of Uz, Padan-Aram, etc. we are left with the Arabian peninsula. And this is confirmed by Arabs who identify themselves as descendants of Ishmael. 

Since time immemorial, rivers have been the lifeblood of civilization” so we should expect to find a river flowing through the land of Havilah. 

Hah! you scoff! There aren’t any rivers in the Arabian desert!

Not today, but…

Dr. Farouq El-Baz, NASA scientist and Professor at Boston University piqued the interest of Biblical scholars around the world with his announcement of the so-called Kuwait River. The idea that a river once flowed across the deserts of Arabia, and somehow connected with the Tigris and/or Euphrates River, seemed far-fetched. Yet evidence for such a river came from the satellite radar images taken during the 1994 mission of the Space Shuttle Endeavor. Al-Baz studied the images, and noticed that traces of a defunct river that crossed northern Arabia from west to east were visible beneath the sands, thanks to the ground-penetrating capabilities of the radar technologies. He called it the Kuwait River (believed to have ran through Wadi Al-Batin valley in Northeastern Saudi Arabia, in ancient times) for that is where it apparently connected with the Euphrates or emptied into the Persian Gulf…

Water last flowed in what El-Baz calls the ‘Kuwait River’ between 5,000 and 11,000 years ago; some stretches of the river may have been up to 5 kilometres wide. Then as the region became one of the driest in the world, blowing sands covered the channel.

“And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia / Cush, father of Havilah, son of Ham, brother to Mizraim early Egypt.”

Where is this ‘land of Cush through which the Gihon river is said to flow? The shocking answer here is made plain in the King James Version of the Bible, according to which the Gihon winds through the ‘land of Ethiopia’ – that is, the land of the Nile tributaries [emphasis added]! This is a rather blatant clue…But the ‘land of Cush’ more accurately refers to the ancient kingdom of Cush (or Kush) that existed in Nubia as early as 2000 BC [early post-flood resettlement of the area.]

But the Nile runs in the opposite direction! You protest.

So did the Amazon at one time.

The changes that this crust and tectonic movement created helped redirect the water movement in South America in different ways and eventually reversed the flow of many of the rivers in an easterly direction towards the Atlantic as opposed to the Pacific or Caribbean.

Erosion also played a major part in the flow change of the Amazon. The growth of the Andes increased the chances of rainfall which produced more erosion coming off of the mountain range, prompting the buildup of sediment faster than the rivers could wash it away. This was a major contributing factor to the course of the Amazon River flowing backwards.

From here on it’s straightforward.

“And the name of the third river is Hiddekel / Tigris: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria.”

“And the fourth river is Euphrates.”

There is, of course, a religious challenge to the location of Eden, based on the fact that three of the named four rivers conveniently meet in southern Mesopotamia. Islam asserts that Eden is located there, and designates a nearby river as Gihon. This river, however, is not mentioned in the text that provides solid clues for the identity of all four rivers, and moreover, arising from the source, not spilling into the Garden of Eden. The plate tectonics are not in the region to allow the possibility that all four rivers changed course along with the massive mountain ranges from which three of the rivers originate.

garden-of-eden-location

While I don’t subscribe to every premise or conclusion by the following author, I think this particular historical data is reliable and valid.

There was indeed a widespread belief in ancient times that the Nile and the Euphrates ‘were but different portions of the same stream’ [Star Names, Richard Allen, p 216]

Putting the puzzle pieces together, the big picture that emerges is that

  • the headwaters / origin of these four rivers – Pison, Nile, Tigris and Euphrates – emerged from the river that watered the garden which was eastward in Eden, therefore we can place Eden with its fabulous garden west of these headwaters.
  • Only the four rivers – the Pison in Arabia, the Gihon/Nile, the Tigris and Euphrates have been historical grouped together. Moreover, highly significantly,  there exists a spring, or underground source, of Gihon in Jerusalem to this day.

meregionmapriverovertrace

On the basis of the data gathered and the biblical geography centered on Jerusalem we may conclude that Eden is currently located under the Medi-terra-nean (Middle of the Earth) Sea.

Geological surveys show that this area was once dry land then covered by a massive flood.

The Mediterranean Sea was formed by the most spectacular flood in Earth’s history when water from the Atlantic Ocean breached the mountain range joining Europe and Africa with the force of a thousand Amazon rivers, scientists say…  

The deluge was triggered 5.3m years ago by subsidence [dropping] in the seabed [“fountains of the great deep were opened up” Genesis 7:11] that caused a land ridge between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean basin to collapse. The ridge linked the Betic and Rif mountain ranges that hug the coasts of modern Spain and Morocco.

As water began to pour across the strait , it eroded the ridge until the flow became a catastrophic deluge. At the time, the Mediterranean basin was an almost entirely dry expanse of low lying land, between 1.5km and 2.7km beneath today’s sea level.

The surge of water created a channel several kilometres wide that would become the Strait of Gibraltar…

A team led by Garcia-Castellanos used data from boreholes and seismic surveys in the area to reconstruct the deluge conditions in a computer model.

Subsidence in the sea floor at the strait allowed water from the Atlantic to pour slowly into the Mediterranean basin for several thousand years, before the flow became a powerful surge that filled 90% of the Mediterranean very rapidly – between a few months and two years [And the waters prevailed upon the earth 150 days.” Genesis 7:24]

Note – the range of time given for this flood, from thousands of years to only 2 years, is a diplomatic concession to the two geological paradigms of Uniformitarianism and Catastrophism. As noted in a previous post, Uniformitarianism is a belief system supporting evolution by allocating millions of years for extremely slow changes to occur, contrary to scientific evidence of sudden, catastrophic changes consistent with the biblical account.

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