The event, on May 18, 1980, killed 57 people and destroyed both human structures and nature in the surrounding area—in addition to blowing off most of its own summit. (The gallery linked above features astounding pictures both before and after the eruption.)
Mount St. Helens has served as an interesting object of study for creationist researchers.
Despite the tragedy, however, Mount St. Helens has served as an interesting object of study for creationist researchers (especially Dr. Steven Austin from the Institute for Creation Research), who have learned more about the effects of catastrophic geological processes and the speed at which the earth can change. From radiometric dating to a study of sedimentary layers and erosion, the Mount St. Helens eruption offered a real-world laboratory for creation scientists to test models and hypotheses about the geologic effects of the global Flood of Noah’s time.
If you’re not familiar with the creationist work on Mount St. Helens, we encourage you to review some of it by following the links below. Although we often refer to the debate between creation and evolution as “origins science” (because theories concern unrepeatable past events), modern geologic processes are often used to show examples of old-earth and young-earth models of earth history. While old-earthers talk about the erosive power of trickling streams given enough time, young-earthers point to the geological upheaval caused by catastrophic floods that are, nonetheless, far smaller than the global Flood of Noah’s day.
Creationist research on Mount St. Helens also should remind readers that creation science is not just a casual expression; it’s a scientific discipline (or, more accurately, a family of scientific disciplines practiced by individuals with a creation worldview). Creationist scientists may be fewer in number than evolutionists, but that doesn’t mean their work cannot be of the highest quality.
For more information:
- Thirtieth Anniversary of a Geologic Catastrophe
- Mount St. Helens in Washington State
- Mount St. Helens—evidence for Genesis!
- Excess argon within mineral concentrates from the new dacite lava dome at Mount St Helens volcano
- ‘I got excited at Mount St Helens!’
- Mt. St. Helens: Key to rapid coal formation?
- Get Answers: Flood, Geology, Young Age Evidence
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