Opinions on faith and life

Where are all the human fossils?



There are some claims and reports of human artifacts and remains in rock layers that are clearly part of the Flood sediments. However, many of these claims are not adequately documented in any scientific sense, while those few reports that have appeared in the scientific and related literature remain open to question or other interpretations. For example, the book Ancient Man: A Handbook of Puzzling Artifacts looks like an impressive and voluminous collection of such evidence, but on closer examination many of the artefacts, though puzzling archaeologically, still belong to the post-Flood era, while other reports and claims are either antiquated or sketchy and amateurish.

Often lay scientists claiming to have found human artefacts or fossils have not recorded specific location details, so that professional scientists investigating the claims have had difficulty finding the location from which the sample in question came. ALSO, lay scientists have in the past not kept some of the rock which encloses the fossil or artefact as proof of its in situ occurrence. These two oversights have often made it well nigh impossible to reconstruct and/or prove where fossils or artefacts came from, thus rendering such finds virtually useless.

Fossilized hammers and supposed human footprints in ancient geological strata, regarded by evolutionists as deposited millions of years before man evolved, but regarded by creationists as Flood deposits, are extremely difficult to document scientifically above reproach and/or with any conclusive finality. (Merely finding rock around an implement does not prove it is pre-Flood.)

For example, it has been claimed that a gold chain was found in black coal.2 However, the artefact evidently was exhibited as a clean gold chain with no coal clinging to it, so we see no evidence that the chain was actually found in the coal, just the claim that it was. While one would never assume any dishonesty on the part of the people concerned, because proper scientific procedures have not been followed the exhibit has proven to be almost useless in convincing a generally skeptical scientific community and apathetic lay public.

Thus, should genuine human fossils or artefacts from the time of Noah’s Flood be found, then it is mandatory that proper scientific procedures be followed to document the geological context, in order to guarantee that the scientific significance of such a find is unequivocally demonstrated. Regretfully, of course, the hardened skeptic would still remain unconvinced, but at least such a find may still awaken some in the apathetic public and a few of the more open-minded scientists.

What is needed, of course, are actual human bones fossilized in situ as an integral part of rock strata that are demonstrably ancient in evolutionary terms, and therefore are usually Flood sediments of the creationist framework for earth history. Yet here is where the real hard unequivocal evidence is lacking and why people ask the question ’Where are all the human fossils?’

We simply cannot point to the report of a human skull found in so-called Tertiary brown coal in Germany, for there is no definitive scientific report available on this object, even though its existence has been verified by the staff of the Mining Academy in Freiberg.3 If it is a coalified human skull, how is it possible to distinguish it from a clever carving in such a way that it becomes conclusive proof? Even if it were demonstrated as genuine, are we sure that the Tertiary brown coal in question was a Flood stratum? In some parts of the world some of the isolated so-called Tertiary sedimentary basins could easily be classified, according to some creationist geological schemes, as post-Flood strata. After all, the early Flood geologists, prior to the advent of Lyellian uniformitarianism and the evolutionary geological time-scale, applied the term ’Tertiary’ to those rock strata that they believed to be post-Flood.

The controversial Guadeloupe skeletons are another case in point.4 Without wishing to take sides in the debate, and in any case the hard data are still inconclusive either way, the fact remains that even if perchance these skeletons were so-called Miocene, that in and of itself would still not prove that the skeletons were in Flood sediments and therefore represented the remains of pre-Flood people. Being a subdivision of the so-called Tertiary, these Miocene rocks may still be post-Flood sediments and so these Guadeloupe skeletons may still not be human fossils from Noah’s Flood.

Perhaps the fossilized human skeletons that come closest to having been pre-Flood humans buried in Flood strata are those skeletons found at Moab, Utah (USA).5 In a copper mine there, two definitely human skeletons were found in Cretaceous ’age’ sandstone (supposedly more than 65 million years old), the bones still joined together naturally and stained green with copper carbonate. While many regard these bones as recently buried, there still remains the remote possibility that they are pre-Flood human ’fossils’.

We can only concur that there is no definite unequivocal evidence of human remains in those rock strata that can definitely be identified as Flood sediments. This realization is at first rather perplexing. But some clues to unraveling this puzzle emerge on investigation.

The Nature of the Fossil Record

Let’s begin by considering the nature of the fossil record. Most people don’t realize that in terms of numbers of fossils 95% of the fossil record consists of shallow marine organisms such as corals and shellfish.6 Within the remaining 5%, 95% are all the algae and plant/tree fossils, including the vegetation that now makes up the trillions of tonnes of coal, and all the other invertebrate fossils including the insects. Thus the vertebrates (fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals) together make up very little of the fossil record— in fact, 5% of 5%, which is a mere 0.25% of the entire fossil record. So comparatively speaking there are very, very few amphibian, reptile, bird and mammal fossils, yet so much is often made of them. For example, the number of dinosaur skeletons in all the world’s museums (both public and university) totals only about 2,100.7 Furthermore, of this 0.25% of the fossil record which is vertebrates, only 1% of that 0.25% (or 0.0025%) are vertebrate fossils that consist of more than a single bone! For example, there’s only one Stegosaurus skull that has been found, and many of the horse species are each represented by only one specimen of one tooth!

In any regional area where vertebrate fossils are found, there is a general tendency for these land animals to be higher up in the rock strata sequence on top of the strata containing marine organisms. This has been interpreted by evolutionists as representing the evolutionary sequence of life from marine invertebrates through fish and amphibians to the land-based vertebrates.

However, this same observation can be more reasonably explained by Flood geologists as due to the order of burial of the different ecological zones of organisms by the Flood waters. For example, shallow marine organisms/ ecological zones would be the first destroyed by the fountains of the great deep breaking open, with the erosional runoff from the land due to the torrential rainfall concurrently burying them. On this basis then we would probably not expect to find human remains in the early Flood strata, which would contain only shallow marine organisms. The fossil record as we understand it at the moment certainly fits with this.

Additionally, the majority of the few mammal fossils in the fossil record are in the so-called Tertiary strata, which most creationist geologists nowadays regard as post-Flood strata. If this is the case, then there really aren’t very many mammal fossils in the late Flood sediments (there are a few mammal fossils in the so-called Mesozoic rocks). Consequently, it’s not only human fossils that are not found in the Flood sediments, but there is a relative lack of other mammal fossils also.

Of course, in the post-Flood era humans would have been able to make the necessary decisions to get away from the local residual catastrophes responsible for the post-Flood (Tertiary) strata, so we wouldn’t expect to find humans fossilized in post-Flood sediments like we find other mammals.

Another problem in the fossil record is, as we have already seen, the fragmentary nature of what is often found, which makes identification difficult. For example, ’a five million year-old piece of bone that was thought to be the collarbone of a human like creature is actually part of a dolphin rib’. Such genuine mistakes are inevitable when only fragments of bone are recovered from the rocks. We can’t even be sure that some bone fragments already found in Flood sediments aren’t in fact human remains, having been labeled something else by evolutionists. After all, because of their evolutionary molecules-to-man belief (bias) they don’t expect to find human remains in lower (older) strata.