What About the Ice Age?
One of the greatest mysteries of Earth history is the Ice Age. Much debate surrounds this phenomenon. When was the Ice Age? How many were there? How long did it last? What caused it? About the only thing not debated is its occurrence. Both creationists and evolutionists accept there was at least one Ice Age. There is great evidence that glaciers at one time covered a great part of our continent and others.
This is an important Biblical conversation because we are continually inundated with the idea the Earth is billions of years old. Many scientists, including some creationists, claim the last Ice Age ended over 11,000 years ago and began 2.6 million years ago. It is just one of the many areas of so-called science where we are fed evolutionist propaganda.
The Bible teaches the Earth was created in six literal days and that the Earth cannot be but a few thousand years old. How then could an Ice Age have occurred within this time period, and when could it have occurred? I will answer the latter question first.
When did the Ice Age happen?
From creation to the flood is about 1,600 years. We can count the years of the generations in Genesis 5 to arrive at this conclusion. There are no gaps in this genealogy as some have suggested. We know how old each person was when they begot the next person, and how old they were and so on. The ice age could have occurred in this time period or shortly after the flood of Noah’s day. There was more than likely only one Ice Age.
The ice record: proof the Earth is old?
Before we consider how the Ice Age could have occurred, we first need to understand the false assumption that the ice record represents hundreds of thousands of years of earth history. Scientists have drilled 10,000 feet into the ice cores. We are told one ice core is evidence of 135,000 years of history. Scientists date the ice cores by counting the ice layers, just like one would count tree rings. It is assumed each ice layer represents a year, when the snow melted in summer and froze again in the winter. This however is an assumption.
The Lost Squadron
During WWII, a squadron of US warplanes crash landed on the ice in Greenland. In the 1980’s, a search team went looking for the planes, assuming they would be buried in the ice. They found, recovered, and restored a P-38 Lightning fighter aircraft that was buried beneath over 250 feet of ice! One of the heads of the expedition reported seeing thousands of ice layers in the hole that was dug. Thousands of ice layers had formed since WWII! Do the math. Those ice layers do not represent years. They actually represent, warm, cold, warm, cold. Many ice layers could develop in one year in favorable conditions. And so one cannot count ice rings to determine the age of the ice. I think this is sufficient enough to prove the ice age could cover a much shorter span of time than often assumed. It could have occurred over just a thousand years or so, if not a few hundred.
What caused the Ice Age?
One cannot determine exactly what caused the Ice Age. We can only speculate. However, there are explanations that do not conflict with the Biblical record. A substantial decrease in solar activity, for one, could have caused the Ice Age. Volcanic eruptions could have caused it as well. When volcanos erupt and spew ash into the air, the sun’s rays are blocked, which can have a cooling effect. 1816 is know as “The Year Without a Summer” when Mount Tambora in Indonesia erupted the year before. Ice cores have volcanic ash in some layers.
Could the flood have caused the Ice Age?
Imagine if volcanos all over the world were exploding simultaneously. There is one phenomenon in human history that could have caused a period of world-wide volcanic activity: the global flood of Noah’s day. In Genesis 7:11, the Bible says, “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.” Most volcanos form where the tectonic plates in the earth’s crust are shifting. Could the flood have created these plates (cracks) when the “fountains of the great deep were broken up,” thus triggering immense seismic activity, which produced volcanos, that led to the Ice Age? It is just as reasonable an explanation as any.
Many mock Christians for their faith in a young earth. While we cannot prove anything specific about the Ice Age, there are reasonable explanations for the Ice Age within a young earth model. It is not crazy or unscientific to believe the Ice Age occurred just a few thousand years ago and lasted only a few hundred years.