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  1. The Rocks Don't Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah's Flood
  2. Questions?

As a geologist trained to read the history of the world from rocks and landforms, Montgomery explores the geological basis of folktales and how geography, culture, and tradition shape the way people see and interpret the land.

Geologists tend to explain the prevalence of flood stories among ancient societies as simply reflecting the fact that floods are common natural disasters. In his quest for an answer, Montgomery draws from the historic works of theologians, naturalists, and other scientists only to discover an unexpected cross-pollination between Western religious history and geology. Among his surprising discoveries is that the first geologists were, in fact, predominantly clergymen. Montgomery ascribes this to a blindness that goes both ways: just as creationists will miss plain-sight evidence, those who subscribe to the scientific method occasionally overlook what can be read right in the rocks.

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The Rocks Don't Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah's Flood

In one compelling example from the book, Montgomery comments on how it took an eighteenth-century Scottish farmer, James Hutton, simply observing the rocks at Siccar Point on the coast of Edinburgh to discover that the Earth is shaped by a slow accumulation of day-by-day change. In the process, he dispelled the idea that the Earth was a mere 6, years old, as inferred from a literal interpretation of the Bible. Indeed, this unique book takes readers on the ground, along the trail of the Grand Canyon, and to the bottom of the Black Sea , so we, too, can read the rocks as a world-class geomorphologist does.

David R.

Questions?

Montgomery is a professor of geomorphology at the University of Washington in Seattle , where he lives. Join the community. Many theologians and scientists within the Christian tradition have long interpreted the biblical story of Noah s flood as a worldwide event and a foundation for determining the geological age of the earth. In this rich, animated narrative, geologist Montgomery points out that theologians have often bent an amazing array of geological evidence to support a literal interpretation of Noah s flood.

The Rocks Dont Lie A Geologist Investigates Noahs Flood

But what does the Earth itself tell us? Using the evidence he finds in the various strata of rocks in a roadbed in Kentucky, Montgomery contends that the million-year-old, trilobite-bearing limestone is clearly not a chaotic, mixed-up product of an earth-churning flood.

The rocks formed when an ancient proto-Atlantic Ocean led to the formation of a thick pile of sediment that gradually accumulated layer by later stretching from Newfoundland to Alabama. Moreover, plate tectonics shatters the myth of a global flood by explaining the sequences, ages, and assemblages of rocks we find throughout the world, as well as the global distribution of topography. Brilliant and provocative, Montgomery s exploration of scientific and theological understandings of Noah s flood vibrantly opens our eyes to the marvels of ancient rocks that are far grander than ourselves.