The Greenhouse Effect
A few years ago, a neighbor of mine returned from a six month term of employment with an oil company. He was working with a drilling crew on the north slope of Alaska. He had an interesting story to tell.
When they examined core samples from shallow wells they were amazed to find remnants of green palm branches. Well, these stories are not really unusual any more. We have all seen pictures and heard accounts of giant mastodons found with green food still in their mouths, all preserved for thousands of years in the ice.
But it is amazing, when you just stop to think. In the past this earth was tropical from pole to pole. Palm trees growing in Alaska! Giant herbivores grazing on lush green tropical growth around the Arctic Circle. The age of the dinosaurs, certainly. But when was it and why did it end so suddenly? The evolutionist has a problem with this one.
Those who believe that change took millions of years just cannot resolve the problem of green plants being found in the ice. This phenomenon illustrates rapid not slow evolutionary change. Sometime in the past the earth was overtaken by rapid disastrous change. The giant animals were caught in flight and frozen where they fell or stood. The green plants in the polar regions did not have time to die and decay. They were frozen rapidly, instantaneously.
Well there may be an explanation offered in the Bible. Now the Bible is not a scientific book. It does not set out to tell HOW the earth was created. What it does do is to offer an explanation of WHY the earth was created. And, while doing that, it offers some interesting information that may be of help in explaining some of the scientific details and provide some answers for why my friend and his associates found green palm branches in core samples on the north slope of Alaska.
The key may be in an ancient Hebrew word that the Bible translates as firmament (Genesis 1:6 KJV). (The word is translated as expanse in the New International Version - NIV.) The Hebrew word is raqiya . It can mean to compress, pound out as in thin metal sheets. The word is used 8 times in the first chapter of the Bible. The question is, what was being compressed or pounded into thin sheets? The answer is water.
"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day and the darkness he called "night. And there was evening, and there was morning - the first day. And God said, Let there be an expanse (raqyia, firmament) between the waters to separate water from water." So God made the expanse and separated the water under the expanse from the water above It. And It was so.. And there was evening, and there was morning - the second day. (Gen. 1:1-7 NIV)
It seems clear, on the surface at least. Water that covered the primal earth was separated creating water above and below. The upper water, called raqiya , is described as a solid, metallic like canopy surrounding the earth. But how could this be?
Recently, scientists at the Lawrence Livermore labs in California took water and compressed it under supercold (cryogenic) conditions. They found that the oxygen in water turned blue and the hydrogen became metallic in form. This metallic form of hydrogen, existing under supercold conditions had some other interesting properties. It was crystalline, transparent, fiber optic, superconductive and ferromagnetic.
Further, there is a heat sink that exists 11 miles out in space. What this means is that as you get closer to the earth it gets warmer and if you go farther into space it gets warmer. At 11 miles out it is the coldest (-130 to -180 degrees F). A special super cold band surrounds the earth.
The interesting question then relates to just what God did with the water on the second day of creation. Was it compressed under these supercold conditions to form a crystalline, fiber optic layer surrounded by ice creating a canopy around the earth - like a greenhouse?
Many of the ancient Bible writers seemed to see the creation in just this way. You who swelter in your clothes when the land lies hushed under the south wind, can you join him (God) in spreading out the skies, hard as a mirror of cast bronze?" (NIV) Which is strong, and as a molten looking glass" [KJV] (Job 37:18)
"He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a tent to live in." (Isaiah 40:22 NIV)
The prophet Ezekiel saw a vision of the glory of God as he looked into the sky. This is part of what he saw. "Spread out above the heads of the living creatures was what looked like an expanse, (firmament) sparkling like ice and awesome." (Ezekiel 1: 22 NIV)
These ancient writers related God, in his creative glory, with a firmament or a hard, metallic, crystalline canopy surrounding the earth.
Today scientists are studying the effects of such a canopy and we can at least speculate on a number of significant elements in this creation model.
A Glimpse of Perfection
First. In this model, there would most likely have been greater atmospheric pressure. Today, at sea level, air pressure is 14.7 psi (pounds per square inch). With the firmament as described the air pressure could have easily been double that a 32.05 psi.
Second. There would have been greater oxygen (O2) and greater carbon dioxide (C02) in the atmosphere. Today O2 stands at about 22%, it could have been much higher. C02 currently occupies .003% and could have been easily .008%. It has been speculated that under these conditions a person could run over 200 miles without suffering fatigue. Also, open wounds would heal in as little as 24 hours. Plants would also grow to greater sizes.
Third. Little or no ultra-violet or harmful radiation would reach the surface of the earth. This fact would add to the preservation of everything on earth including humans.
Fourth. There would possibly be fewer harmful bacteria. Consider the health implications of this.
Fifth. Due to the fiber optic nature of the canopy, the effect of the light from the sun and moon would be equally dissipated from pole to pole on the affected side of the planet. The light would be softer and the earth would never experience a completely dark period as it does now. Also the light would most likely be soft pink in color.
The Bible record seems to indicate that this was the case. "God made two great lights - the greater light to govern the day and the lesser to govern the night." (Gen. 1:16) It could be assumed that the lesser light that governed the night was the moon. However, the moon is not always visible so perhaps this does not fulfil this requirement while the soft transfer of light to the dark side of the planet due to the fiber optic nature of the canopy would.
Also, it is well known that pink light is the most beneficial for plants, animals and humans. For plants it is the most important light in the spectrum. For humans it has a calming effect. Under the right spectrum of pink light, the brain secretes norepinephrine which is a natural tranquillizer and neuro-transmitter. This would allow human minds to work at maximum efficiency in a tranquil environment.
Sixth. The stars would be enhanced as they shone through the firmament. "....He also made the stars. (God set them in the expanse of the sky to give light on the earth, to govern the day and the night...." (Gen. 1:17) NASA has found that when a red filter is used in space, the stars appear in beautiful, enhanced color. With the firmament to act as a filter, the stars would be vivid and visible day and night. We have long been able to tell times and seasons by the position of the stars. In this model of creation mankind would have no need for a Timex or a Rolex. Time would be immediately obvious by just looking up at the stars.
Seventh. Scientists have concluded in recent years that many stars give off music. This would be enhanced as it passed through the firmament and could have been audible at the surface of the earth. Is this what the ancients had in mind when they wrote of the primal creation. The account in the book of Job records this statement from God. "Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?" ..while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?" (Job 38:4-7)
The Bible account suggests another significant difference in the primal creation model. "....the Lord God had not sent rain on the earth ...but streams (a mist KJV) came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground" (Gen. 2:6)
There was no rain. There would then be no clouds. This would enhance the suggestion about the stars made above. It would also indicate there were vast pools of water under the surface of the ground that rose and fell through the sand silicate layer covering the earth - a perfect hydroponic system. The rising and falling of the water could have been helped by the greater magnetic field on the earth at that time.
The structure of the earth was very different, including the earth s magnetic field. Today it has been calculated that the earth is loosing 1/2 of its magnetic field every 1,400 years. The field of 5,000 to 6,000 years ago would have been considerably stronger.
It may also be true that the earth was a great, controlled thermonuclear reactor controlled by under ground reservoirs of water to regulate temperature and to supply the roots of the plants with a constant, controlled supply of warm water. The heating of the environment did not come from above; instead, there would have been a gentle thermal blanket within the earth, probably surrounded by a layer of asphalt inside the earth called the "swaddlingband" in Job 38:9. (Carl E. Baugh, PH.D; Panorarma of Creation)
The picture beginning to emerge is one of paradise - a perfect environment for life - under the influence of the original Greenhouse Effect.
We have been considering a creation model where the earth was surrounded by a canopy of water. This water would have been compressed under supercold cryogenic conditions making it crystalline, transparent, fiber optic, superconductive and ferromagnetic in nature. A thin, near metallic, layer encased in ice crystals.
Under this canopy life would have been vastly different than life as we experience it today. It would have been paradise. Tropical conditions existing from pole to pole. No clouds or rain. The plants watered from underground springs providing warm water to the roots. The earth bathed in a tranquil pink glow that was greater in the day and lesser at night. Plants and animals growing and living at their optimum. Humans living greatly extended life spans. The Bible records the age of the oldest man as reaching 969 years. Altogether, Methuselah lived 969 years, and then he died." (Gen. 5:27)
The inhabitants of the earth lived in tranquillity and near perfect health. It could also be speculated that under these perfect atmospheric conditions, where open wounds would heal in one day, the body would have the ability to recreate the genetic code and actually re-grow severed limbs. This was paradise in its ultimate form.
The beginnings of change began in the third chapter of the Bible. It started with mankind - created in the image and likeness of God. ( See Gen. 2:27) We can read the tragic account of the fall of man in Genesis chapter three. Rebellion against God resulted in the man and women being expelled from the Garden of Eden. A gate was shut and an angel provided to guard the entrance. But life carried on - until Noah.
"When men began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. Then the Lord said, "My spirit will not contend with man forever, for he is mortal; his days will be a hundred and twenty years....The Lord saw how great man s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The Lord was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. So the Lord said, "I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth - men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air - for I am grieved that I have made them." But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord." (Gen.6:1-8)
While saving righteous Noah and his family in the famous ark, God destroyed the earth with a flood. How did he create the flood? Probably by bringing down the firmament (water canopy).
What does the Bible say "I am going to bring flood waters on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it. Everything on earth will perish." (Gen. 6:17) "In the six hundredth year of Noah s life, on the seventeenth day of the second month - on that day all the springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened. And rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights." (Gen.7:11) "Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts...." (Psalm 46:6)
In summary, due to the advanced and intolerable state of man s rebellion on the earth, God decreed that the creation would be destroyed by a flood. Also, that he would preserve mankind through the family of Noah with man s life span reduced to 120 years as a result of the great changes that would take place on the earth.
According to the above record, the flood was likely accomplished by two actions. First: the bursting forth of the springs of the deep . Second: by the opening of the floodgates of heaven. It could also be imagined this happened simply by God uttering his voice and the earth melted . Could this be an allusion to the melting of the metallic and ice canopy. If the thermonuclear energy from the center of the earth blew hot water into the firmament, it could melt the ice and metallic hydrogen canopy causing all the water originally separated to return to the earth as the floodgates of heaven were opened up.
If the original creation in Genesis came about by the command of God (i.e..and God said, let there be light, and there was light.) then it could be reversed just as easily by the command of God.
When the waters abated the earth was different. We have already mentioned how the life span was reduced. But a new phenomenon occurred. There was now a rainbow in the heavens. This could only be there under the new atmospheric conditions as we experience them today. Today we live in a fallen world. But the reoccurring theme of the Bible is that paradise will be restored. And the new world will resemble the world of the primal creation.
This restored world is portrayed in countless prophesies in the Old and New Testaments. Here is the hope as defined in just a few of these texts.
A New Heaven and a New Earth
"Do you not know? Have you not heard The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth" He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:28-31)
"The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy....Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that gave way; say to those with fearful hearts, "Be strong, do not fear; your God will come, he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution he will come to save you." Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the tongue of the dumb shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the desert. The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs. (Isaiah 35: 1-7)
"Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind...Never again will there be in it an infant that lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years, he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth; he who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed....The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will straw like the ox, but dust will be the serpent s food. They will neither harm nor destroy in all my holy mountain," says the Lord." (Isaiah 65:17-25)
"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." (Revelation 21:1-4)
How will paradise be restored? By God rebuilding the firmament? This seems to be the most likely scenario. Certainly the earth needs to be restored. It needs to be re-energized and the healed earth will be beautiful and tranquil from pole to pole. The life span will increase due to the new re-energized environment and the reasons for the curse brought down in the Garden of Eden will be reversed. Sin and rebellion will be brought under control and as a result of this so will suffering and death.
The issues of the environment and the greenhouse effect are topics of our day. This is because everyone knows there is limited time for all of us before some thing big will have to happen to effect change. Man s dominion of the earth is fast bringing about ruin. Current attitudes and morality are parallel with those of men and women in Noah s day. Violence fills the earth and every inclination of the thoughts of man s heart is only evil all the time . The leaders of our world are seeking a solution in their New World Order.
But God, the Creator, will once again intervene on his earth. "For this is what the Lord says - he who created the heavens, he is God; he who fashioned and made the earth, he founded it; he did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited....I am the Lord and there is no other....Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other." (Isaiah 45:18-22)
He offers salvation and a place in the new heavens and the new earth in a very special way. This offer was made to Daniel a faithful prophet of Israel who lived over 2,500 years ago. "And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament (raqiya); and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever." (Daniel 12:1-3 KJV)
This blessed event could happen in our life times. So there is a personal message here. Will we respond to the offer of salvation - the same one extended to all throughout history including Noah and Daniel.
God, the Creator, is about to re-energize the earth and restore Eden in fulfillment of the ancient promises. What event could inject sufficient energy to re-establish the strength of the earth s magnetic field? What could supply the energy to re-build the firmament and restore paradise? My personal thought is that it will be the resurrection of the dead and the second coming of Jesus the Messiah to re-establish God's kingdom on earth.
"For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words." (2 Thess. 4:13-18)
By Clyde Snobelen