More Planets Than Stars! Exoplanets and Our Little Blue Ball

Artist conception of a few of the probably billions of earth-like planets in the Universe.  Planets very similar to the chemical makeup of Earth are likely to be found but will they have any forms of biological life?  That is the big question.

Our solar system comes with planets of all sorts of sizes and compositions.   Not long ago, it was possible to debate if there were any other planets in the Universe other than those of our solar system.   Now, there doesn’t seem to be any question that other planets, called exoplanets, do exist. The […]

A Strange Testament to an Ancient Earth: Bat Breath Causes Caves to Grow Larger

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Can the act of breathing in a cave cause it to grow larger?  Limestone caves are usually formed by dissolution of limestone as the result of the interaction of carbon dioxide dissolved in water seeping through cracks in bedrock.   Typically this begins deep underground and as voids expand and reach the surface animals may enter […]

The Naica Cave of Crystals is a Giant Problem for a Young Earth

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Nine hundred feet below a Mexican desert hundreds of giant white crystals, some more than 90 feet long and 13 feet wide, fill a hot (137 F) and humid cavern.  Pictures of people exploring this crystal palace look as if Rick Moranis had shrunk them down to the size of an ant and then put them into […]

Where is the Next Generation of Creation Scientists?

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Where is the next generation of creation scientists?   I don’t mean the next generation of believers in creation science but the next generation of young-earth experts who will continue the legacy of Morris, Austin, Humphreys, Woodmorappe, Wood, Bergman, Oarde, Baumgardner, etc… I believe that this has to be a question that many of the first-generation creation […]

Ken Ham’s Ark Encounter to Usher in a Modern Day Reformation?

Geneva reformers Feral, Calvin, Beza, Knox

Ken Ham would have us believe that the modern reincarnation of the young-earth creationist movement, which he claims began only 55 years ago, is the real deal this time.  Unlike previous attempts over the past 300 years to create a history of the Earth with a recent global flood as a centerpiece, this time his para-church apologetics […]

My Letter to the Host of a Local Creation Conference

Ken Ham speaks at a conference a few weeks ago in Ohio.

For many pastors and their congregations, questions about the intersection of science and faith are difficult because of their unfamiliarity with the scientific evidence and the extensive theological literature on Genesis. Hence, they turn to experts to provide answers.  Ken Ham and Answers in Genesis (AiG) seem to provide the answers many Christians wish to […]

John Ray in 1695: The Flood, Fossils, and Extinction

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John Ray, one of England’s greatest 17th century natural theologians, spent much time pondering the meaning of fossils or “formed stones” as they were called then.  I have shared some of his thoughts about fossils and Earth’s history before (See:  John Ray on Flood Geology: Words that Still Apply Today).   In a correspondence with […]

The Ark Encounter Sits on a Foundation Made of Trillions of Fossils

I made this image to show that the Ark is built on top of fossil-filled rock.  That is a natural resource they don't seem to be interested in using.

The Ark Encounter theme park in Kentucky is literally built on trillions of dead things.  This fact would seem to support Ken Ham’s popular response to what we would expect had the world been subject to a global flood: “Billions of dead things in rock layers…”   But the fossils that form the foundation of his Ark park […]

Quadrillions, Quintillions and Beyond: The Vast Fossil Record Refutes the Flood Geology Hypothesis

Don't worry I left a few for everyone else.  I collected just a few of the quadrillions of belemnite fossils that are contained in rocks of the Bighorn Basin, Wyoming.  These were collected on our hike on Sheep Mountain.  (image: Joel Duff)

Young earth creationists greatly underestimate the fossil record when they tell their audiences that there are “billions of dead things buried in rock layers.”  The point, that there are huge numbers of fossils, is correct but billions is such an underwhelming number compared to the reality of the fossil record.  The vastness of the fossil record was driven […]

Wyoming Fossils: Coming to Grips with the Absurdity of the Flood Geology Model of Fossil Origins

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The sedimentary rocks of the Earth hold vast quantities of fossils.  Hundreds of years of observations have shown that these fossils are far from random in their distribution but rather they appear in the geological column in a distinct pattern or order referred to as fossil succession.  How can we explain the observed distribution of fossils in the geological […]

The Ark Encounter: A Presentation at the Geological Society of America Annual Meeting

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Take a tour of the Ark Encounter with a geologist, paleontologist and myself in this YouTube presentation.  In July I visited the Ark Encounter with geologist Dr. Kent Ratajeski from The University of Kentucky.   After that trip Kent, myself and Dan Phelps (President of the Kentucky Paleontological Society) worked together – my contribution was rather […]

Perceiving Age: Student’s Interpretations of the History of Craters on Mars

Another "young" crater on Mars. Notice the dark debris that has been strewn over the lighter "older" material.

Our perceptions of the age of a subject are frequently based on our common experience with similar subjects. Most people have some ability to guess the age of children with seemingly very little prior information.  We might call this ability to guess age our intuition but this “intuition” is the scientific method working automatically in our minds.  Our […]

Walking in the Footprints of Giants: The Red Gulch Dinosaur Tracksite in Wyoming

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Scattered across the upper surface of a hard layer of limestone in the badlands of the Bighorn Basin in Wyoming are the tell-tale signs of dinosaur activity: footprints.  Over one thousand footprints have been identified here, most of them on one exposure of rock in a small gully in the Red Gulch region.  On our family vacation this […]

Remnants of a Shallow Sea: A Visit to Monument Rocks in Kansas

monument-rocks-kansas-joel-beechnut-photos-rjduff

In remote western Kansas, groups of rock pillars stand like a natural Stonehenge over the grassy plains.  One such group of these pillars south of Oakley is named Monument Rocks.  Returning from our Wyoming and Colorado adventure, we stopped overnight in Scott City, Kansas just south of this interesting rock formation. The following morning we made our way along many […]

A 60,000 Year Varve Record from Japan Refutes the Young-Earth Interpretation of Earth’s History

Varves in Montana - Photo credit Rod Benson  http://formontana.net/glaciers.html

Do places on Earth exist where annual records have been stored for tens of thousands of years and can be accessed today? Ice-cores and tree rings can preserve long records of yearly events but some of the best records come from layers of sediment underlying some lakes which,  if formed under the right conditions, can be read like the annual rings of […]