“These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens...”
In 1980, Mount St. Helens exploded with incredible force, leaving a sterile, barren scar on the face of the earth. Basing their expectations upon the slow pace of evolution, the scientific establishment said it would be generations before life would return to the area. Yet, the US Forest Service has reported that virtually every species that lived in the area before the eruption had already returned after only five years!
In most but not all cases, the populations were much smaller than before the eruption – but they were back. As a result, scientists are surprised at the speed at which life is returning to Mount St. Helens.
Unexpected forces helped cause this transformation. For example, as gophers tunneled, they mixed soil into the top layer of volcanic ash. Seedling trees, protected during the blast by thick snow and the debris of larger trees, provided the basis for a nearly instant new forest which has grown over the few years since the blast. Spirit Lake was supporting fish only five years after the blast.
The return of life to Mount St. Helens shows us that commonly accepted ideas about how long life takes to establish itself need to be revised downward drastically. And this fact helps to show us that the Bible’s claims of a young earth are not at all unbelievable.
Photo: 3,000-foot steam plume two years after eruption of Mount St. Helens.
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