15. Wasmann, ref. 13, p. 328.
16. Wasmann, ref. 13, p. 324.
17. Wasmann, ref. 13, e.g., pp. 339, 347, 376–377.
18. The Vulgate alternates using the word genus and
species in Genesis 1. The Spanish Reina-Valera
(1995) and Nueva Version International use
19. Linneaus seems to have used terms inconsistently,
sometimes in a general sense, and other
times as a discrete taxonomic category. See
the quotes listed at http://scienceblogs.com/
species-1/, accessed 5 December 2017.
20. Wasmann, ref. 13, p. 296.
21. Pennisi, ref. 1, p. 819. It is interesting to note that
eminent evolutionary mammalogist Richard Van
Gelder (1928–1994), who attempted to reclassify
different mammalian genera into the same genus
when it was documented that hybrids had formed
between them, regardless of the fertility of the
offspring (much like Herbert suggested with
plants centuries earlier), still held to this view
despite having catalogued numerous mammalian
hybrids from the literature. Van Gelder, R.G.,
Mammalian hybrids and generic limits, American
Museum Novitates 2635: 1–25, 1977.
22. Pennisi, ref. 1, p. 819.
23. This topic is reviewed in more detail in Lightner,
J.K., Towards a creationary view of why
speciation occurs, J. Creation 30( 1): 70–75, 2016.
24. Lightner, J.K., Mammalian Ark kinds, Answers
Research J. 5:151–204, 2012; appendix 8.
25. This has been observed in finches, where hybrids
went on to develop a new species that fits a
specific ecological niche. So what Linneaus had
observed in plants, evolutionists have now seen in
animals; Lamichhaney, S., Han, F., Webster, M. T.,
Andersson, L., Grant, B.R., and Grant, P.R., Rapid
hybrid speciation in Darwin’s finches, Science,
Nov. 2017 | 10.1126/science.aao4593. This rapid
origin of a new species was not predicted by
evolutionists and is more consistent with the
biblical history and timeframe.
At least some
‘tillites’ may be
Michael J. Oard
Uniformitarian earth scientists have presented creation scientists
with many challenges. Each challenge
must be addressed in detail before it
becomes clear that the particular
features claimed as proof of ‘millions/
billions of years’ are no such thing.
Often, such investigation also ends
up challenging uniformitarian ideas.
Indeed, creation scientists often find a
reasonable solution, one that fits better
in the Creation/Flood model than uniformitarianism, even given our limited
manpower and funds. 1 An example of
one such claim is that ancient ice age
deposits, called ‘tillites’, prove the
necessity for millions of years. 2, 3
The challenge of tillites
Tillites are defined as a consolidated
glacial till; a mixture of rocks of all
sizes within a finer-grained matrix
deposited by glacial ice. Processes
apart from glacial ice can produce
till-like rocks. If the origin of the till-like debris is uncertain it is called
a diamicton when it is loose and
unconsolidated and a diamictite when
it is lithified (transformed into stone).
Tillites by this definition are rather
Besides a texture of rocks of all
sizes within a finer-grained matrix,
other glacial-like features are
sometimes associated with tillites.
• striated and grooved bedrock,
• striated, faceted, and/or polished
• outsized rocks4 within finer-grained
These features are considered
‘diagnostic’ of glaciation, since they
are commonly associated with the
‘Pleistocene’ ice ages (the post-Flood
Other more minor features are also
claimed as diagnostic, such as nailhead
striations, which are striations or
grooves that start abruptly on a bedding
plan. Nailhead striations are thought to
have formed when a rock in a moving
glacier sinks down to the base and
scratches the substrate. Combined
with the features commonly regarded
as diagnostic of glaciation, these give
the impression of overwhelming
evidence for tillites formed by multiple
ice ages through geological history.
These ancient ice ages, all before the
‘Pleistocene’ ice age are mostly fitted
into four main time periods (table 1).
The challenge of ancient tillites for
creationist geology is that widespread
glaciations are not plausible to have
occurred during Noah’s Flood, when
most of the rocks would have formed
in that paradigm.
Responses to the
problem of tillites
However, several responses to the
challenge of tillites are possible, all
centred on the conclusion that the
tillites were not formed by glacial
ice. First, numerous problems with
the glacial interpretation have been
revealed by both secular scientists6
and creation scientists. 2, 7, 8 For instance,
landslides either on land or on the
ocean bottom can duplicate the till-like texture of the debris, and the three
main diagnostic features. 2 An Eocene
Geological Period Secular Age (Ma)
Late Paleozoic 338–256
late Ordovician 445–429
late Proterozoic 950–520
early Proterozoic 2400–2200
Table 1. The four main ice age periods within
the geological column5