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Another Look at the CCC Model
Robert E. Gentet
© 2007

The CCC young-Earth model seeks to understand the Earth's geologic history in the light of the following postulates:

  1. Man's sin brought a Curse upon the Earth that was progressive in nature. The effects of the Curse often left a physical, geologic record, before, during, and after the Flood,
  2. Various ecosystems were created during Creation Week. Their placements should be consistent with the lowest preserved record in each local geologic sequence. Thus, each local geologic sequence reflects the chronology of ecologic changes since Creation Week for that locality;
  3. Geologic "Periods" are characteristic ecosystems existing simultaneously on the Earth. A "Period" is a geographically limited ecosystem with characteristic life forms;
  4. Similar worldwide stratigraphic sequences may be understood as similar ecologic successions. Food web growth in each ecosystem closely resembles geologic, fossil succession, giving an evolutionary appearance in widely separated geologic sequences. The ancient Earth paradigm prevents seeing geologic "Periods" as rapidly changing ecologic events in each locality since Creation Week;
  5. Each stratum must be carefully analyzed to determine the time frame of its formation. Valid "time indicators" must have a place within the complex history of the young Earth. Time indicators include tracks (such as amphibians, lizards, crocodiles, turtles, dinosaurs, birds, and mammals), nests, eggs, paleo-lakes, paleo-rivers, in situ growth, bioturbation, dinoturbation and other evidences of life and environments;
  6. Local or regional geologic sequences may reflect numerous pre- and post-Flood catastrophic events in addition to the Genesis Flood Event (henceforth called GFE); and
  7. Pinpointing the location of the GFE in any specific location must be based on the total stratigraphic sequence represented and internal evidence at the individual locality. The CCC model seeks to produce a framework wherein any locality can be analyzed using all biblically given time frames – Creation Week events, pre-Flood occurrences, GFE, and post-Flood geologic events. The CCC model postulates that considerable pre-Flood geologic, fossil evidence survived the GFE.

We live in a world dominated by the teaching of an ancient Earth teeming with life brought about through the process of organic evolution. Those who accept the Biblical account in Genesis as literal are challenged to present alternatives to the commonly-accepted evolutionary paradigm.

For nearly a hundred years, or more, many young-Earth creationists have embraced what has been known as the Flood Geology model [10, 11, 18]. In its essence, this creation model posits a young Earth only a few thousand years old (generally 6-10,000), a literal seven-day Creation Week, a worldwide Flood in the days of Noah having great geologic significance, and biologically limited changes since Creation within the Genesis "kinds." In addition, the bulk of fossiliferous sedimentary rocks are believed to date from the GFE.

However, some young-Earth creationists have raised various objections to the Flood Geology model and other models have been advanced. Some of these models have post-Flood geologic events forming much more of the fossiliferous record [3, 4, 5, 12, 14, 17].

All modern young-Earth Creation models that I am aware of relegate geologic activity of the pre-Flood world (after Creation Week to the start of the GFE) to minor and therefore insignificant events in the fossiliferous record. This Creation/Curse/Catastrophe (CCC) young-earth model, on the other hand, stresses how all time frames given to us in the Scriptures are important. And the most overlooked time frame is the pre-Flood earth after sin entered the world and the Lord cursed the Earth. There is a long time period between the beginning of the Curse and the day the Flood waters began in Noah's 600 th year.

With this in mind, the CCC geologic model of Earth's history is presented. Like all young-Earth geologic models, it needs to be flexible for any needed changes, and even discarded if shown wrong. The current dilemmas within young-Earth geology models can only be resolved when proper Biblical interpretation and valid geological information are linked. This is no easy task, to be sure. Conventional geologic thought has gone through some much-needed changes in the past 170 years since Lyell. Particularly in the past 40 years, catastrophism has ceased being a "dirty word" among the world's leading Earth scientists.

The Scriptural Background

Raw geologic information needs a framework. For over 100 years in the world's leading educational institutions that framework has been the combined theories of organic evolution and an ancient earth. The conception of an ancient earth began to be popularized by James Hutton in the late 1700s but only with the advent of Darwin's book in 1859 did it become popular to interpret the fossil succession in the rocks in an evolutionary light.

Most early geologists before Darwin were not evolutionists [7]. Many viewed the sudden first appearances of new fossil types in the rock record as due to successive creations by God over long periods of time. It is important to realize the geologic time scale was not formulated using the theory of evolution. Charles Darwin's book initiated wide acceptance of the theory of organic evolution, but this came after the geologic "Periods" were already well-known and accepted. The CCC model takes exception to the immense time frame and some correlation factors associated with the Geologic Time Scale. All young Earth creationists recognize, to one degree or another, the need to account for the unidirectional fossil order found locally in the rocks around the world.

Those who hold to the evolutionary/ancient Earth paradigm reason from that basis. Data is "fit" into that concept and framework. Creationists also accept good geologic (or other) data as factors to be fit into a reasonable framework. And our use of the data, as is also true of evolutionists, will only be as good as the model from which we are working. In the past 200 years, much excellent geologic data has accumulated as thousands upon thousands of scientists have closely examined the earth's crust. Our exception to the current evolutionary paradigm must not be with any valid data, but with erroneous conclusions drawn from data filtered through the assumptions of the evolutionary/old Earth paradigm.

Creationists filter valid data through our concepts of Earth's history, based upon our understanding of the Biblical revelation. Evolutionists reject from their framework the presupposition that God has intervened in Earth's history, and indeed such was even prophesied to happen at the end time (II Peter 3:3-7). While creationists should respect and honor the Word of God as a true historical record of what has happened in the past, they also realize its limitations. We are limited by what the Creator has chosen to reveal concerning the past. We can also unwittingly limit ourselves by misconceptions of what the Lord has recorded for us in the pages of Holy Writ.

On the other hand, we should seek to understand all He has caused to be written by His faithful people on the subject of Creation and post-Creation events. This proper reasoning from Scripture to scientific evidence forms the basis of any sound, Biblical, geologic model of Earth's history.

The CCC geologic model of Earth's history shares some aspects with the current widely-used Flood model. The similarities include such concepts as: a young Earth, a literal Creation Week, all life "kinds" being created with the possibility of limited genetic changes, the fall into sin by mankind's first parents, the worldwide, catastrophic Noachian Flood, and the salvation of all believers through Jesus Christ and His atoning sacrifice for sin.

With this in mind, this paper concentrates on some of the differences between the CCC model and the current Flood model. In the process, of necessity, much will be left out. Much research remains to be done.

Quantity and Placement of Life on Newly Created Earth

The CCC model emphasizes the need to consider the quantity and placement of the various life forms on the Earth at the end of Creation Week. In the case of human beginnings, Genesis is quite clear that only one man (Adam) and only one woman (Eve) existed when the week ended. Furthermore, they were commanded to "be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it" (Gen. 1:28). This introduces the need for time. The fact that it took humans many, many generations and years to fulfil that command has important geological considerations.

In the same way, God earlier spoke of the need for sea creatures to "be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth" (Gen. 1:22). This plainly tells us that God did not originally create large populations of sea life and birds. It strongly implies restriction in number and location that required time for them to fill their ecological niches. While a restriction in numbers is not specifically mentioned of land animals, we know by observation today—long after the redistribution of the animals after the Flood—that few animals have universal distribution.

These built-in ranges of habitats resulted in limited mixtures of flora and fauna in each environment or ecological niche. These restricted habitats play important roles in determining what life forms are available for preservation as fossils in each area at any given time since Creation Week.

Eden and Its Garden

We must also pay close attention to God's description of man's first home – the Garden of Eden. Scripture tells us that God specifically "made all kinds of trees [to] grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food" (Gen. 2:9).

The trees producing fruit "good for food" for human consumption are classified as angiosperms. In fact, angiosperms are seen to "supply nearly all the plant food for the mammals that now dominate all other life upon the earth" [2, pp. 333, 336].

The CCC model therefore posits that at the close of Creation week, humans, angiosperms and mammals were limited to a small area of the early Earth called "Eden." This ecosystem of man, mammals, and angiosperms spread out from there to inherit the rest of the Earth as time passed and conditions permitted.

In like manner, since other life forms were also commanded to multiply and fill the earth, the CCC model posits that they also were created in specific creation "spreading centers." Exactly where these "spreading centers" were located has much to do with their later fossil record and, indeed, the fossil record should serve as a useful guide.

The Earth Becomes Tainted

Genesis One concludes with God's pronouncement that all He had made was "very good." God was well pleased with all He had created, but shortly something happened that drastically changed the landscape.

At creation, Adam and Eve were in harmony with their Creator. But soon they yielded to the temptations of the devil in the Garden and ate of the forbidden fruit. The result of this broken relationship with God is well known in regard to man's banishment from the Garden of Eden and inescapable return to the dust of the Earth. However, man's relationship with the Earth also drastically changed. God told Adam:

"Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you…By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food…" (Gen. 3:17-19).

One of the major emphases of the Curse is on the ground, the Earth itself. Ecology and geology immediately become linked to the Curse. The world became an increasingly unpleasant place on which to live. The Curse invoked a very different world from the "very good" one pronounced at the conclusion of Creation Week. This basic truth is often overlooked in other young-Earth models. Paradise was lost.

The Curse Intensifies

The first sin involved Adam's and Eve's disregard for God's command concerning the forbidden fruit. The next recorded sin in the Bible involved something far more grave than stealing. It involved the taking of an innocent human life. Out of intense jealousy, Cain killed his brother Abel. As a result, Genesis 4:11-12 tells us that the effect of the Curse on the ground intensified:

"Now you are under a curse and driven from the ground, which opened its mouth to receive your brother's blood from your hand. When you work the ground, it will no longer yield its crops for you. You will be a restless wanderer on the earth."

The implications of this intensification of the Curse upon the ground are profound. Crop production was no longer the norm. Wandering in search for food became a necessity. God did not deal lightly with the wanton destruction of human life! Paradise was a dim memory. While Cain's life was spared, the Earth itself provided the penalty by withholding one of man's most basic needs: stable food production.

Something drastic occurred in the ecosystems of the Earth. They seemed to be in upheaval as one event after another disrupted normal food production.

Direct Divine Government

Genesis tells us more about how the pre-Flood earth differed from later times. When Adam and Eve sinned, God directly intervened and decreed the punishment. Even as human population grew, as it obviously had by the time Abel was murdered, God did not resort to human justice systems. In fact, He specifically forbade other humans from taking matters into their own hands and punishing Cain. God's response to Cain's worry that someone would harm him is very revealing:

"Not so, if anyone kills Cain, he will suffer vengeance [from Me] seven times over" (Genesis 4:15).

God reserved for Himself the prerogative to directly punish the wicked in the pre-Flood world. Those who defied Him suffered a manifold increase in the punishment He had earlier dealt! And for the purposes of understanding Earth's history, we need to especially note that in both the case of Adam and of Cain, the punishment was related to the Earth itself.

People seemed to automatically understand that God personally took revenge for sin by increasing the penalty (the Curse). Later when Lamech killed a man he boasts:

"If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times" (Gen. 4:24).

Rebellion against God became worse and worse. Men seemed to pride themselves in defying God and boasting about their evil deeds and God's reaction to them. This must have filled the pre-Flood world with terror and violence as evil deeds multiplied.

Eusebius of Caesarea (c. AD 260-339) is called the "father of church history." His record of the early beliefs and happenings of the church is most valuable and it also provides us with his view of the pre-Flood earth and how God interacted with it.

Speaking of Christ's pre-existence and His part in Creation, Eusebius also adds the sad state of the world and how humanity fell into rebellion after Creation.

"At the beginning, after the original state of blessedness, the first man disregarded the command of God and fell into this mortal state, exchanging the delight of heaven for the curse of the earth. His descendants, who filled our world, showed themselves even worse, except for one or two, choosing a brutal existence and a life not worth living. City, state, art, knowledge, laws, virtue, or philosophy were not even names among them…and in their madness prepared for war with God himself and to fight the famed battles of the giants, trying to fortify earth against heaven and, in their delirium, to do battle with the supreme Ruler himself.

"In response, God sent them floods and conflagrations, famines and plagues, wars and thunderbolts – punishments progressively drastic – in order to restrain the noxious illness of their souls." [9, pp. 25-26]

Notice that not only does Eusebius speak of floods and conflagrations, but specifically says the punishments grew "progressively drastic." This is a key element of the CCC model.

Finally only one man was found to be righteous in the sight of God. The multiplication of the Curse on the ground must have been immense as God personally dealt out penalties in the form of earth shaking events attempting to bring repentance into the hearts of God-rejecting, heartless people.

The Easing of the Curse

At Noah's birth, his father Lamech foresaw the lessening of the Curse: "He [Noah] will comfort us in the labor and painful toil of our hands caused by the ground the LORD has cursed" (Gen. 5:29).

That the Curse was indeed eased in Noah's time is verified in the Noahic Covenant given immediately after the Flood to all mankind: "Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done. As long as the earth endures, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease" (Gen. 8:21-22).

We know that God is not speaking in an absolute sense of the Curse being lifted. It is not until the future time of the New Heavens and the New Earth that the Curse will be totally rescinded (Rev. 22:3). We still have the diminished Curse on the Earth today involving local floods, volcanic activity, hurricanes, tsunamis, famines, tornadoes, earthquakes, etc. in sizable amounts. This strongly implies far more intense geologic and ecologic activities on the pre-Flood Earth when the intensified Curse during the long pre-Flood time climaxed in the worldwide, catastrophic GFE.

Significantly Matthew 24:37-39 reveals the wickedness of the world just before the time of Christ's return will be similar to the time before the GFE. It is precisely here that God says He will revoke the Noahic covenant with mankind and once again curse the Earth in various stupendous ways, ending with a universal destruction by fire (Isaiah 24; II Peter 3:10-13).

Perhaps we can say, to rephrase an old expression: "The future is the key to the past." Anytime that God directly must punish mankind for sins left unpunished by civil governments, great disaster happens upon the land and its peoples.

It has been said: "It is the floods and the fires, the battles and the bombardments, the eruptions and the earthquakes which have preserved so much of the human story" [1, p. 55]

The CCC geologic model understands the effects from the Curse on the Earth contributed greatly to the Earth's rock and fossil record, especially in pre-Flood times.

A Different Way of Governing

There is no mention of human government being authorized by God in the world before the Flood. Human government began when those few survivors from the Ark were told for the first time that "whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed…" (Gen. 9:6).

This was not giving humans the right to take personal vengeance, but rather civil governments were first authorized and empowered by God to punish evil doers and to reward those who do good. St. Paul 's New Testament instruction in Romans 13 to be obedient to governing authorities refers back to this portion of Genesis 9 where nations were first organized after the Flood.

This new way of governing in the post-Flood Earth impacted the intensity of the Curse. Now God expected authorized human government to punish the wicked. God took one step back from direct punishment of evil doers. The Post-Flood world has been a time when God's punishments have been mainly through the hands of others – authorized human lawmen or even using one nation to punish another.

Even in post-Flood times, however, Scripture is clear that God has shown His displeasure over sin by sending floods, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, plagues, etc. The fiery destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah , the ecological events of the Exodus, the turning back of the sundial and Joshua's long day are some examples.

The only national theocracy in post-Flood times was God's rule over ancient Israel . During this time period God repeatedly stressed that punishment on the unrepentant Covenant people would be with increasing intensity: "But if you will not listen to me and carry out all these commands…I will punish you for your sins seven times over…" (Leviticus 26:14, 18, 21, 24, and 28). This increasing degree of punishment in order to bring them to repentance seems indicative of how the Lord has acted throughout history. The Scriptural account of the pre-Flood world is brief, but Divine activity through geologic and ecologic events appears to have been even more forceful before God sanctioned human government to act on His behalf.

The Geologic Record

Each locality on Earth has a geologic history. This history can be examined by studying the local geologic column. Rocks in most areas are deeply buried. It is rare that the entire local column can be directly observed, such as is possible at the Grand Canyon . Nevertheless, each local geologic column can be examined from core drilling samples or elsewhere in the region where otherwise buried layers are exposed at the surface.

Earth scientists have intensively studied wide areas of the Earth during the past 200 years. It was found that each area of the Earth has a sequence of fossils in the various layers that tend to follow a certain order worldwide. This order is usually termed faunal succession. Fossil assemblages in the rocks are not random, but change in character systematically from older layers to younger ones.

Early in the study of geology, three major divisions ("Eras") were given to the fossil record, later termed the Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic. These divisions were further subdivided into geologic "Periods," each one envisioned as worldwide in extent and sequential. That is, Paleozoic life forms were buried before Mesozoic, and Mesozoic strata and fossils are below the Cenozoic strata with their characteristic life forms.

The geologic "Periods" are man-defined, but were especially helpful when geology was first formulated in Europe . Profound breaks (such as angular unconformities or specific rock types) were observed to set apart the various geologic "Periods" in Europe . Such profound structural or lithologic changes between the "Periods" did not always materialize in other parts of the world. For this reason, correlation between worldwide areas is done on the basis of paleontology. So-called "index" fossils are now used to identify each geologic "Period." "Index" fossils must have a very narrow range within the geologic column and have proved useful in correlating strata over wide areas. Hence, certain types of fossils identify and are said to be characteristic of each geologic "Period."

As explained by creationist Steven J. Robinson [12, p. 34]:

…Fossils occur in a geologically determinable sequence, where marine animals appear before terrestrial animals, aquatic plants before land plants, and man, together with many other plant and animal species, appears last. Once a particular genus, family or order appears, there is often a relatively continuous record of it until its disappearance. Indeed, certain periods seem to be dominated by certain types of animals, certain types of plants, and certain types of environment. Index fossils are a reflection of this non-randomness at the ‘species' level."

Many questions have arisen among young-Earth creationists as to the significance of this unidirectional trend in the fossil record. It has, in fact, been one of the most vexing questions to be answered adequately. It is precisely here that the CCC model offers various possibilities that young-Earth scientists can use to better understand the meaning of the stratigraphic record.

CCC Model Geologic Implications

Valid geologic data must fit into any biblically-based, earth history model. One important way to begin such a task is to note that geologic fossil succession closely resembles today's ecologic succession.

"The gradual and lengthy process whereby the energy sources of our planet were utilized successively by plants and animals is called geologic succession. It differs in no fundamental way from the ecological succession that occurs today when a new environment appears, except that it requires much more time." (16, p. 370.)

The CCC model views fossil, geologic succession in each region as evidence of sequential environmental/ecosystem changes since Creation. These ecological successions need not require immense time periods.

The CCC model advanced in this paper postulates:

  • Man's sin brought a Curse upon the Earth. God's intervention in human affairs because of man's sinfulness often left a physical, geologic record as a witness. The GFE is the climax of numerous geologic events God brought upon the world that eventually perished. The post-Flood geologic record is less substantial than the pre-Flood record because of the change from direct divine judgment to the establishment by God of human governments to carry out justice.
  • All the various "kinds" of organisms were created during Creation Week. But the varying ecologic placement and quantity of each "kind" created was directed by God's command to "reproduce and fill the Earth." This is specifically said of the more "advanced" types of animals (fish and birds, for example, and other land animals were also likely created in limited numbers). Time was needed for reproduction and for suitable ecosystems to develop before migration to other regions became possible. The so-called "simpler" sea-life of the early Paleozoic rocks is seen to reflect the first ecosystems affected by the Curse.
  • The geologic "Periods" are records of characteristic ecosystems. The world never globally experienced only one geologic "Period" at a time. Eden was "Cenozoic" from the very beginning. But it is obvious from the geological record that other large areas of the Earth's inland seas were "Paleozoic."
  • Widely spread similar stratigraphic sequences are understood to be similar ecologic successions that naturally developed worldwide as life multiplied and spread from centers of creation. The general tendency was for each ecosystem to enlarge its food web – that is, increase the number of organisms in its network of interconnected food chains. During this expansion of the ecosystem's food web, one dominant life form might perish or diminish in prevalence as more "advanced" life forms entered the food chain by migration. Through time, flora and fauna migrated, expanded or diminished, and changed to new varieties within the restricted "kinds." Such changes were "frozen" in geologic time as events of the Curse affected the Earth.
  • Each local geologic sequence reflects the area's chronology of ecologic/environmental changes during Creation Week, the long pre-Flood Earth time period, the GFE, and post-Flood events. Since food web changes over time closely resemble geologic fossil succession, they give an "evolutionary" appearance to each local geologic column. But it is not truly evolutionary since new types suddenly appear. This general ecologic succession would be true even for widely separated geologic sequences. Before Darwin , geologists interpreted this succession of fossils as evidence of successive creations. With the assumption of an ancient Earth, these successive creations were interpreted to take place over immense periods of time. Later, after Darwin 's time, fossil succession was used as evidence for the Theory of Organic Evolution.
  • The Earth's history encompasses many and various events affecting each local geologic column. Therefore, each area must be carefully studied to determine the time frame of its rock formation.
  • The strata are replete with valid "time indicators" that must be reckoned with in determining the history of each geologic region. While it is true that many strata were suddenly deposited, it is also true that within the local sequences are "time indicators" showing intervals between catastrophic events. "Time indicators" include animal tracks, nests, in situ growth, rain prints, hard grounds, soils, parallel bentonite (volcanic ash) beds, oyster beds, chalk beds, and other such factors that indicate a passing of time and sequential events.
The GFE and Stratigraphy

Where in each local geologic column is the location of the effects of the GFE? In the traditional Flood Geology model, the bulk of the geologic record is reckoned to be the result of the Flood. However, in the CCC model, many other events associated with the Curse are also taken into consideration. Although the GFE violently affected the land, the CCC model holds that much pre-Flood strata survived the GFE.

The Hebrew word mabbul (translated as "flood") is only applied to the first 40 days of the Flood (Gen. 7:17). It was during these 40 days when the heavens were opened and incredible amounts of water continually fell from the sky. The result was total annihilation of all air-breathing life not preserved on the Ark. The CCC model envisions the destruction of all human and air breathing life outside the Ark in those first 40 days.

Such horrendous and continuous outpouring of rain would result in multitudinous "Super Floods" raging across all land areas. The resulting vast, super "rivers" of water rushed toward the sea and carved out huge sections of the pre-flood Earth. The shear magnitude of the "Super Floods" would carry the eroded material in suspension out to sea for deposition.

Such an enormous rush of waters across the face of all land surfaces would not be expected to bury life forms on the continents. The GFE on the continents would not be noted by fossils but rather by enormous areas of massive erosion. Certainly there is no reason to expect "time indicators" during the GFE on the continents. The GFE should therefore be found somewhere within (and not at the base of) each local geologic column.

Some have claimed that the CCC model presents a "Tranquil Flood" concept. Just the opposite is true! It is rather those models that allow for "time indicators" within continental Flood deposits that invoke evidences of a "Tranquil Flood" concept [12, p. 60; 4, p. 105; 13, p. 60]. Because of the destructive nature of the GFE in the CCC model, there is no time during the Flood itself for dinosaurs to build nests and lay eggs, for crinoids to be buried without destroying their delicate structures, for huge herds of dinosaurs or other creatures to leave their footprints (commonly in normal walking patterns around ancient lakes or along ancient, inland shorelines), etc. Rather, these and many other "time indicators" witness to sporadic events occurring during the pre-Flood (or, in some cases, post-Flood) world.

Creationist Jim Gibson noted four categories of patterns in the fossil record [6]:

  • Fossil diversity patterns,
  • Fossil morphological patterns
  • Fossil ecological patterns
  • Depositional patterns.

Fossil diversity patterns speak of the distinct separation of fossils in different strata. While segments of the geologic sequence (composed of so-called geologic "Periods") may be missing in each local geologic column, the order in which organisms are found from the bottom layers to the top remain strikingly similar.

For example, remains of trilobites always occur below dinosaurs and dinosaur fossils are below those of the large mammals. Also, it is often found that at specific stratigraphic levels, various fossil kinds may disappear or seriously decline never to recover to former prominence.

It is noted that "the number of species generally increases as one moves upward through the fossil record" [6]. In addition, the bottom-most Cambrian fossils contain only a few species, but the number of phyla and classes is initially high. Higher up the sequence, the number of species increases but there are few additional phyla making their first appearance.

All this is what the CCC model would predict. As the newly created kinds in each ecosystem multiply, the varieties ("species") would increase but few additional phyla would be noted. Ecosystems become superimposed as time passes and geologic events and environmental changes cause some ecosystems to thrive and others to pass from the scene.

Morphological patterns show increased complexity from bacteria in the Precambrian to humans in the Cenozoic. Complexity is often related to the number of cell types. Interestingly, "morphological stasis is the persistence of morphology through portions of the geologic column" [6]. That is, fossil species tend to look the same at their first and last appearance in the record. The arrangement of the morphological types into hierarchical patterns result in smaller gaps in the lower taxonomic categories and "strikingly distinct" [6] gaps at the higher taxonomic levels of families, orders and classes. Moreover, "fossils from higher in the stratigraphic column resemble living species more than do the fossils from lower in the column" [6].

Such morphological patterns are anticipated based upon the special creation model held by all young-earth scientists. While the Flood Geology model may have difficulty in explaining the appearance of more modern types as one proceeds upward in any local geologic column, it is expected in the CCC model. The modern-day world is composed of those organisms that have managed to withstand the various geologic events during the pre-Flood world and, to a lesser extent, post-Flood times. The pre-Flood world and its various geological events left behind fossils of the life forms that failed to survive.

Fossil ecological patterns tend to increase the number of habitats as one moves upward through the geologic column in each area. This "ecological expansion" shows a move from marine creatures on or close to the sea floor (lowest Paleozoic strata) to additionally include life forms inhabiting swamps or seashores or rivers (middle Paleozoic). In addition to all these previous habitats, the upper Paleozoic includes fully terrestrial species. Mesozoic and Cenozoic "include representatives from all the preceding ecological habitats" [6]. "It is important to note that this trend is not a replacement trend, but an addition trend, because all these habitats are still occupied" [6].

Traditionally, the Flood Geology model has attempted to explain these expanding ecological patterns in the strata by the expanding activity of the Flood. While the lower Paleozoic strata seem to fit the encroaching Flood model picture, the fact that many additional marine groups are found in the upper Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic strata is much harder to explain. Moreover, it is acknowledged that "one would think that a worldwide flood would produce extensive mixing of various types of fossils" [6].

The interpretations based upon the CCC model are much more straightforward. The early disasters that struck the Cursed Earth only affected limited areas of sea life. Furthermore, the degree to which life had spread out from "creation centers" in the early Earth reflected what organisms were even available for fossilization at each site as time passed. This was true for both land and sea ecosystems. The number and type of life "kinds" available in any one particular ecosystem determined what was available for fossilization. Disasters can affect only local ecosystems and environments or particular environments worldwide (i.e. worldwide shorelines, for example, if worldwide sea level changed).

In conventional geology it is recognized that plate movements could affect sea levels worldwide [15, p.318]. The CCC model posits that plate movements have been catastrophic but also episodic in nature since Creation. The intrusions and withdrawals of shallow seas across portions of the continents throughout Earth's history can be thus explained.

Furthermore, other factors came into play as life forms fulfilled God's command to "fill the earth." For example, it has been pointed out that dinosaurs seemed to have had a much higher reproductive rate than do large mammals [12, p.62]. Dinosaurs and the large mammals inhabited separate ecosystems. There is little hard evidence that dinosaurs survived on the same type of plants (angiosperms) as do mammals. The characteristic plants of the dinosaur ecosystems are now rare or missing from the world of mammals. Only a few small mammals are known to have existed in the dinosaur ecosystems. The dinosaurs seemed to have lived out their existence mainly in limited coastal environments/ecosystems around the world [8, pp. 72, 196].

The dramatic change to angiosperm vegetation in the dinosaur environment in the later "Cretaceous" ecosystem may have started the demise of the giant beasts. The change of vegetation and the withdrawal of the Cretaceous inland seas may have so disrupted the ecosystems of the dinosaurs and other creatures that existed as one food web that they failed to survive the transition into the "Cenozoic" ecosystem.

In today's world, we live in a predominantly "Cenozoic" ecosystem with only traces of the plant and animal life from the earlier widespread "Paleozoic" and "Mesozoic" ecosystems. Only those organisms survived into the modern world that could successfully live within the "Cenozoic" ecosystem that spread from Eden with its characteristic angiosperm/mammal food web. The food chain of each creature is distinct. Without adequate food, no creature can survive. The areas outside " Eden " did not fare well ecologically as the "Cenozoic Eden" ecosystem slowly spread across the face of the Earth. Even today, introduction of foreign life forms can cause havoc in ecosystems.

Specific Application of the CCC Model

How can the CCC model be applied to the geologic column in a specific area? One of the most favorite geological sights in the USA is the Grand Canyon region. The actual canyon itself is only a small part of the Colorado Plateau where large segments of Precambrian to early Tertiary strata are laid bare. It is an ideal location for application of the CCC model.

The Colorado Plateau covers a large area of northern Arizona , most of Utah , a part of northwestern New Mexico and most of western Colorado . The many strata of the Plateau lie mostly horizontal. Its undistorted rock record presents an immense geologic laboratory for study because the arid conditions do not favor extensive plant cover.

Creation Week and perhaps early post-Creation Week times are represented by the Precambrian Vishnu schists and tilted Grand Canyon series strata that underlie the Paleozoic sequence in the Canyon. These Precambrian rocks are separated from the overlying Paleozoic by a striking unconformity. The Precambrian rocks seem intimately tied to rapid events of Creation Week itself and perhaps of the early post-Creation Week time.

The early post-Creation Week to the time just before the GFE is represented by the area's Paleozoic and Mesozoic rocks. Above the Precambrian in the Canyon area are eight major sedimentary layers, all representative of "Paleozoic" strata. Because they contain abundant fossils and various "time indicators" (burrows, tracks, rain drop prints, possible karst limestone, conglomerates of reworked earlier rocks containing fossils, etc.), the Paleozoic rocks represent successive pre-Flood land and marine ecosystems that once covered the area.

In other areas outside the Grand Canyon , many Mesozoic rocks with their characteristic fossils overlie the Paleozoic. In them are found rich dinosaur remains (fossil bones, nests, eggs and tracks), as well as many other fossils that differ from the ones in the lower lying Paleozoic rocks. Further to the north of the Grand Canyon is Bryce Canyon and Cedar Breaks where Eocene rocks form the deeply eroded Pink Cliffs. These strata also represent various pre-Flood events.

The GFE is represented by a large erosional break. Proceeding southward from Cedar Breaks and Bryce Canyon towards the Grand Canyon area, it is readily noted that the Mesozoic rocks are deeply eroded. Before the Grand Canyon area is reached, the Mesozoic rocks disappear entirely. Even further south of the Grand Canyon, the Paleozoic rocks so prominent in the Canyon are last seen at the Mogollon Rim, except for small patches still present such as on Mingus Mountain .

Throughout the American southwest, prominent features such as buttes and mesas bear stark testimony to the enormous erosion that has taken place. Vast areas of the landscape have been denuded of their once former extensive deposits. This unconformity, due to extensive regional erosion, is spectacular evidence of the GFE in this part of the world.

Post-Flood events are superimposed upon this stark landscape by various Cenozoic features, such as the impressive, volcanic San Francisco Peaks located south of the Grand Canyon area. Many other southwest areas also bear witness to volcanic activity since the grand denudation took place. Also to be found are remains of old riverbeds and lakes that once dotted the landscape in more moist times. These superimposed features represent various post-Flood events that have shaped the current landscape of the region.


The various applications of the CCC model will take time and research by many young-Earth scientists. However, the framework is now available for use. Perhaps its greatest contribution is the recognition that the pre-Flood, cursed Earth is fertile ground for geologic history.


Thanks to all who have encouraged the author over the years to pursue the development of this geologic model. Special thanks to Marji, my wife, for her immense patience over the years, her listening ear, and her coining the name for the CCC model. It is hoped that further research in the years ahead by many creationists will refine the CCC model. In the process, we can all have a better understanding of the fascinating world God has fashioned. "Praise the LORD…He has caused His wonders to be remembered…He remembers His covenant forever" [Ps. 111:1, 4-5].

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  3. Garner, Paul, Continental Flood Basalts Indicate a pre-Mesozoic Flood/post-Flood Boundary, Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal , 10:1 (1966), pp. 114-127.
  4. Garner, Paul, Where is the Flood/post-Flood Boundary? Implications of Dinosaur nests in the Mesozoic , Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal , 10:1 (1996), pp. 101-106.
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  11. Rehwinkel, Alfred M., The Flood in the light of the Bible, Geology, and Archaeology , 1951, Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, MO.
  12. Robinson, Steven J., Can Flood Geology Explain the Fossil Record?, Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal , 10:1 (1966), pp. 32-69.
  13. Robinson, Steven J., Dinosaurs in the Oardic Flood, Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal , 12:1 (1998), pp. 55-68.
  14. Setterfield, Barry, "A Brief Earth History," www.setterfield.org/earlyhist.html.
  15. Stearn, Colin, Carroll, Robert L., and Clark, Thomas H., Geological Evolution of North America (third edition), 1979, John Wiley & Sons , New York .
  16. Stokes, William Lee, Essentials of Earth History (Second Edition), 1966, Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, NJ.
  17. Tyler, David J., A post-Flood Solution to the Chalk Problem, Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal , 10:1 (1996), pp. 107-113.
  18. Whitcomb, John C., Jr., and Morris, Henry M., The Genesis Flood , 1962, The Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, Philadelphia , PA.
Further Reading:
External Links:
  • Dr. Leonard R. Brand's 2007 Origins paper Wholistic Geology: Geology Before, During, and After the Biblical Flood showing reasons to support pre-Flood geologic activity. While more young Earth creationists now see the need for geologic activity outside the Flood, Dr. Brand is one of the few who has published material showing the need for pre-Flood catastrophic events as well.

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