The Ice Age: Causes and Consequences | The Institute for Creation Research

The Ice Age: Causes and Consequences

The Ice Age has been a longstanding problem for uniformitarian thinking, with many unsolved mysteries. No mere tweaking of today's climate conditions would cause such a catastrophe. A creationist model based on the revealed events of Scripture, however, offers a possible answer.

The great Flood of Noah's day accomplished a complete reworking of earth's surface and an alteration of all its hydrologic and meteorlogic systems. The Ice Age likely occurred soon after the Flood, perhaps in the days of Job, for references to ice and snow abound in his book (see, for example, Job 38:29). Job didn't live in a glaciated area, but he evidently knew about icy conditions farther north.

The key to the Ice Age was temperature--not cold, but warm. Ice comes from snow, and snow from moisture in the air, which in turn comes through evaporation, which comes from warm water. The Flood oceans were quite warm due to the introduction of huge volumes of superheated water from the "fountains of the great deep" (Genesis 7:11) and frictional heating by shifting continents, etc.

Warmer water evaporates much more rapidly than cold. The immediate post-Flood time was marked by frequent major storms fed by excessive evaporation. Polar ice caps built up as water vapor condensed and fell as snow. Pressure packed it into ice, which spread as glaciers. The earth was not completely frozen, but the polar ice caps were much larger then. Large-scale volcanism in the Flood's latter stages clouded the atmosphere with volcanic dust, reflecting solar radiation back into space. This prohibited snow and ice from melting.

The Ice Age commenced and continued until the oceans gave up their excess heat and the atmosphere cleared. Water trapped as ice on the continents lowered the sea level by an estimated four to six hundred feet, no doubt exposing the continental shelves. During the Ice Age, all the continents were probably connected by land bridges.

What happened when the Ice Age ended? The volume of ice returned to liquid form and reentered the ocean, raising sea level and drowning all areas near the ocean. Today, we find numerous remains of civilizations that evidently had been built in coastal areas soon after the Flood.

In recent years such ruins were found in the Black Sea, leading many to speculate that Noah's Flood was responsible. But this could not be. Ignored were waterborne sediments thousands of feet thick underneath the Black Sea that are the legacy of Noah's Flood. The ruins were built after Noah, but were inundated by major flooding as the rising Ice Age meltwater overtopped the natural dam near today’s Istanbul. A similar scenario explains the Mediterranean Sea. The rising waters breeched the "dam" at Gibraltar and flooded a low-lying floodplain with inland lakes. Great Britain was part of Europe. The Hudson Bay was dry. Large islands in the Pacific were connected with the mainland.

Genesis 10:25 states that in Peleg's day "was the earth divided." This certainly could not imply that in Peleg's day the Atlantic Ocean was opened up, for this would have caused another flood to rival Noah's. Perhaps what Scripture is saying is that in Peleg's day the Ice Age ended, increasing the volume of water in the oceans, raising sea level, drowning land bridges, and "dividing" the continents.

As the great Flood of Noah's day ended, God instructed the animals and man to multiply and occupy the entire planet. Man's refusal was overcome at Babel as God enforced migration, graciously working through nature, for at this time the Ice Age connected all the land, facilitating travel. As the globe filled with occupants, the ice melted, dividing the continents and trapping the migrants in place. God made it possible for both animals and man to obey His command.

* Dr. Morris is President of the Institute for Creation Research.

Cite this article: Morris, J. 2009. The Ice Age: Causes and Consequences. Acts & Facts. 38 (8): 15.

The Latest
NEWS
Was a Franken-Fish “Created”?
In 2020, Hungarian zoologists described the hybridization of a Russian sturgeon and American paddlefish.1 Some sources have reported the scientists...

NEWS
"100-Million-Year-Old" Bacteria?
Researchers from the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology have recovered what they claim are 100-million-year-old microbes. Drilling 74.5...

NEWS
Origin of Tectonic Plates Best Explained by the Flood
A new study published in Nature Communications claims to have figured out how the tectonic plates may have originated.1 It’s been over...

NEWS
Give Today and Support Biblical Creation Ministry
North Texas Giving Day is here once again! Will you help us reach the next generation? Your generosity will empower ICR and our Dallas Museum—the...

NEWS
Mammalian Brains Prove Evolutionary Disconnect
The evolutionary model of brain development predicted that the complexity of neural connectivity should have increased as brains became larger and the...

NEWS
North Texas Giving Day Next Week!
North Texas Giving Day is almost here! Will you help us reach the next generation? Your generosity will empower ICR and the ICR Discovery Center for Science...

NEWS
Celebrating One Year at the ICR Discovery Center
Thank you to all who joined us for the ICR Discovery Center for Science & Earth History’s First Anniversary Celebration! ICR staff enjoyed meeting...

NEWS
New Evidence Hurts Feathered Dinosaur Theory
Is a dinosaur still a dinosaur if it has flight feathers? A new study points to some fascinating evidence that contradicts the idea of feathered dinosaurs...

NEWS
New Planetarium Show: Exploring Deep Space
The ICR Discovery Center for Science & Earth History is celebrating its first anniversary since the Grand Opening on September 2, 2019. To commemorate...

NEWS
Inside September 2020 Acts & Facts
What's the story behind ICR's new President? What milestone are we celebrating this month at the ICR Discovery Center? How do comets affirm...