Britain as Evidence for the Flood
On July 18, 2007, Nature magazine’s news writer Quirin Schiermeier reported on a scientific study that has made headlines around the world. Since the 1980s, various scientists have proposed that the island of England was created by flooding. Recently, Sanjeev Gupta, from the Imperial College of London, and his research team explored the geological features in and around the island. From the study, Sanjeev and colleagues discovered some very interesting features that led them to an even more interesting conclusion.
Schiermeier wrote that Gupta and his team “used data from the UK Hydrographic Office, collected for the purpose of ensuring safe navigation, to map the sea floor.... More recent data was collected by ships equipped with GPS and high-resolution acoustic measurement devices” (2007). From the data, Gupta and his co-researchers concluded: “The data show a collection of landforms that, taken together, indicate a catastrophic flood origin” (Gupta, et al., 2007). They further stated: “Our study provides the first direct evidence that a megaflood event was responsible for carving the English Channel valley network” (2007). [NOTE: It might surprise the reader that, although megafloods are so massive, geological records of their impact are often subtle and difficult to identify according to Gupta and his colleagues (Schiermeier, 2007).]
How big do the researchers estimate that this “megaflood event” would have been? Associated Press writer Thomas Wagner explained: “The flood unleashed about 35 million cubic feet of water per second, 100 times greater than the water discharge of the Mississippi River” (2007). Philip Gibbard, a geologist from Oxford University, noted: “It is no exaggeration to say that this Channel flood was probably...one of the largest ever identified...(and) it had profound long-term geographical consequences” (as quoted in Wagner, 2007). Gibbard further commented: “This was perhaps the biggest flood on Earth we have evidence for” (as quoted in Schiermeier, 2007). Science reporter Jonathan Amos noted that not only was the flood huge, “at its peak, it is believed that the megaflood could have lasted several months” (2007).
Gupta’s article in Nature consists primarily of detailing the geographical and geological features that led the team to conclude that a huge flood was responsible causing Britain to be an island. As with most information reported in such peer-reviewed science journals, however, the article turns to hypothesizing about the cause and timing of the huge flood. Supposedly, the flood was linked to events that happened about 400,000 years ago, and a second catastrophic occurrence about 200,000 years ago. Victor Baker, of the University of Arizona in Tucson, commented that Gupta and his team made a strong case for a huge flood, but he also concluded that “the complex issue of timing the events is the main caveat of the otherwise convincing study” (Schiermeier, 2007). In essence, then, we have overwhelming evidence that a huge flood caused the geological formation in and around England, but we are not sure exactly when or how this gigantic inundation occurred.
To the Bible student, evidence such as this is not at all surprising. The geological features formed by a massive flood that could have lasted several months and displaced 35 million cubic feet of water per second fits perfectly into the biblical account of the worldwide Flood as recorded in Genesis chapters 7 and 8. The biblical text notes that “all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. And the rain was on the earth forty days and forty nights” (Genesis 7:11-12). As a result, the “waters prevailed and greatly increased on the earth.... And the waters prevailed exceedingly on the earth, and all the high hills under the whole heaven were covered.... And the waters prevailed on the earth one hundred and fifty days” (Genesis 7:18-19,24).
What would a person expect to find if a flood like the one described in Genesis actually took place? The exact type of evidence that Gupta and his fellow researchers reported in Nature. Add to that the convincing evidence of the various flood legends that circulate worldwide (see Lyons and Butt, 2003), and you have a remarkably strong case verifying the Genesis Flood. People who refuse to recognize the weight of this evidence fall into the same category as the gainsayers about whom the apostle Peter wrote. He stated that there would be those who “willingly forget” that the ancient world was flooded by water (1 Peter 3:5-6). To deny the global Flood of Genesis, a person must intentionally choose to reject the evidence available from both the Bible and accurate geology.
Amos, Jonathan (2007), “Megaflood ‘Made Island Britain’,” BBC News, July 18, [On-line], URL: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6904675.stm.
Gupta, Sanjeev et al. (2007), “Catastrophic Flooding Origin of Shelf Valley Systems in the English Channel,” Nature, 448:342-345, July 19, [On-line], URL: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v448/n7151/abs/nature06018.html.
Lyons, Eric and Kyle Butt (2003), “Legends of the Flood,” Reason and Revelation, 23:102-103, November, [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/40.
Scheirmeier, Quirin (2007), “The Megaflood that Made Britain an Island,” Nature News, July 18, [On-line], URL: http://www.nature.com/news/2007/070716/full/070716-11.html#B2.
Wagner, Thomas (2007), “Study: Flooding Left Britain an Island” [On-line], URL: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070719/ap_on_sc/britain_megafloods;_ylt =Akls1sqXJTH2y_VwjtoIPiLMWM0F.