Editor’s Comment: In his book “The Three Worlds” E.T. Tennyson explains why the Apostle Peter makes a distinction between the “heaven and earth- of that era and the “heaven and earth which are now”; for that heaven (or atmosphere) and earth were covered and protected by the watery canopy, while our atmosphere and earth are different in that they no longer have the protecting aqueous ring. Our world is like a green-house with its glass covering broken, leaving us exposed to all of the upheavals of nature. Job likened the great water canopy to a “molten looking glass” (Job 37:18), and it is certain this glass-like canopy above the atmosphere made for perfect climatic conditions, without the extreme heat and the extreme cold we know today. Tennyson’s book is a must read for all Christians and if we have never sent you a copy, let us know and it will be sent free to you.
What was the earth like, geographically, before the flood?
This is a question which has occupied very few minds because we have been taught to think of the earth as being always as it is now”. The evidence which is now piling up however flatly contradicts this view. We know now that the earth today must be vastly different to what it was before the great deluge of Noah’s day changed the whole face of things and made a new earth. Does the Bible therefore give us any clue as to what the earth was like before the flood?
For one thing it does tell us that before the flood one sixth only of the surface of the earth was water. Five sixths of the whole surface was land. There was room therefore for a much larger population than today but it is possible that much of this area was low lying because there were no great mountains before the flood such as the mountains of today. From the evidence which has been gathered it is apparent that trees before the flood grew to great heights. How then were they watered for the Bible tells us that there was no rain? It says how things were watered however. They were watered by a heavy dew. This suggests a very humid atmosphere. The Bible says, “For the Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the earth but there went up a mist from the earth and watered the whole face of the ground”
Under the canopy which surrounded the earth, the atmosphere could have been humid because the heat of the sun, although it did not strike the earth directly, would be diffused through its whole atmosphere by the rings which surrounded the equator. These rings would reflect the light of the sun to all parts of the earth much like mirrors, even at night. Thus there would be an even temperature in all parts of the earth and significantly there would be “No night there”, because the reflection from the rings would light up the earth with a continuous light stronger than our moonlight and unobscured by clouds since there were no clouds, just as there are no clouds on Saturn, only shining rings above it,
Since the temperature would be even over all the earth there would be no winds or storms. The humid atmosphere would be greenhouse like, causing vegetation of great heights and also producing animals of dinosaur size in the swamps and low lying places. Conditions more suited to higher forms of life would exist on the higher ground.
Another peculiarity about conditions was that there was seemingly no fermentation before the flood; only after the flood did Noah’s wine make him drunk. We are learning that fermentation results from certain rays of the sun, just as Carbon 14 is created by the rays of the sun. If the sun’s rays did not hit the earth directly, however, would there then be fermentation, or would there be Carbon 14 built up in living things, as scientists, presume it has always been doing?
Also there was no rainbow in the sky before the flood. Not till after the flood did God make the rainbow. It was the sign of the covenant he made with man that he would not again destroy the earth with the waters of a flood; “neither shall there be any more a flood to destroy the earth”. Since the waters which had caused the flood had now descended upon the earth they couldn’t do so a second time, thus there wouldn’t be another flood.
But why did the rainbow not shine in the sky before these waters came down? It couldn’t very well, because a rainbow is caused by the rays of the sun shining through rain. Since there was no rain, and no direct rays of the sun to shine through it if there had been, then there couldn’t be a rainbow.