The folks at Worldview Weekend are busily promoting the latest discovery of Noah’s Ark. I say latest because, frankly, the Ark seems to be discovered every few years and yet people keep searching for it. Ron Wyatt claimed to have found it at Durupinar, in Eastern Turkey near Mt. Ararat, but that claim is rejected even by young earth creationist scientists who’ve visited the site (Wyatt is a first class con artist, or was until he died). Ark searchers have claimed to locate it in Turkey itself, on Mt. Ararat, near Mt. Ararat, in several mountain ranges in Iran and in what was once Urartu. Yet none of them have turned out to be true. But this time, they declare, it’s for real:
Led by explorer, adventurer, and featured Worldview Weekend speaker Dr. Bob Cornuke, a fourteen man crew returned this week from Iran bearing stunning evidence that theirs is the long-anticipated, even coveted discovery of the remains of Noah’s Ark. Bob’s team consisted of a Who’s Who of business, law, and ministry leaders including Barry Rand (former CEO of Avis), the multiple best-selling author and Christian apologist Josh McDowell, Frank Turek (co-author with Norm Giesler of I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist), Boone Powell (former CEO of Baylor Medical Systems), and Arch Bonnema (president of Joshua Financial).
Notice what’s missing from the list? How about an archaeologist? Or a geologist? The latter would be especially important since, this article claims, the structure they allegedly found looks like basalt:
Reg Lyle, oil and gas geologist said “the object appears to be a basalt dike, however, it is absolutely uncanny that the object looks like hand hewn timbers, even the grain and color look just like petrified wood….I really need to keep an open-mind about this.”
A basalt dike? That looks like wood grain? A geologist should be able to tell the difference rather easily between a basalt dike and petrified wood. And if he can’t, they can certainly be identified in a lab with a basic test – basalt is igneous and should contain all sorts of radioisotopes that petrified wood obviously won’t have. But their whole case seems to rest on the alleged appearance of objects that look like wooden beams:
Bob Cornuke, president of the BASE Institute, is a veteran of nearly 30 expeditions looking for yet-to-be-discovered locations and artifacts described by the Bible. He is cautiously–but enthusiastically–optimistic about the find: “We have no way of confirming for sure that this object is Noah’s Ark, but it is probably the most interesting and baffling object ever found by ark searchers…it sure gets my heart to pumping just thinking of what it could be.”
Well you can’t prove that it’s Noah’s Ark, but you certainly can prove whether or not it’s made of basalt or whether it’s petrified wood. Have they submitted samples to a lab to find out? The article claims that they were tested and found to be petrified wood, but contains no details at all. What tests were performed? At what laboratory? And where are the actual results of that test? Ron Wyatt claimed for years to have lab tests that showed petrified wood from the Durupinar site that dated to about 4500 years ago, but that was a lie.
Then there’s this odd statement from the article:
Upon being cut open, one of these “rocks” also divulged a marine fissile that could have only originated undersea.
I presume this means that there was shale inside one of the rocks, or that the rock was made of shale. The phrase “a marine fissile” makes little sense, since fissile is an adjective. Regardless, why the fact that shale originates underwater would have any connection to Noah’s Ark is beyond me. The ark, if it existed, floated on the ocean, it didn’t get encased in shale at the bottom of the ocean. Of course, the author of the article seems not to understand why one would find marine artifacts in a mountain anyway:
Scouring the mountains all around the object, team participant Steve Crampton found thousands of fossilized sea shells blanketing the landscape. Cornuke brought back a one-inch thick rock slab choked with fossilized clams.
No kidding. This would be an example of the typical creationist nonsense that marine fossils in mountain rock proves that there was a global flood; in actuality, it disproves it. If the marine animals were left behind by the flood, they would be on the mountain, not in the mountain. When you find strata on a mountain with marine fossils embedded into it, that means that strata was deposited underwater and then uplifted to its current height much later, a process we can observe happening today.
Some of America’s leading businessmen, an attorney who has argued several cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, and two leading apologists believed the evidence was compelling enough that they made a daring trip to the politically volatile state of Iran and climbed a harsh mountain to see the object firsthand.
Great. Maybe next time you can send a Dairy Queen manager, a flamenco dancer and two rodeo clowns; their jobs will have just as much relevance to such an exploration as the ones mentioned above.
Let me add one more thing. The author of the article makes the following declaration:
This article and the pictures are copyrighted and can not be duplicated in whole or part. You are free to link to this article but you CAN NOT duplicate any portion of the article or any of the pictures without express written permission from Worldview Weekend, Brannon Howse and Bob Cornuke.
Sorry, Worldview Weekend, it doesn’t work that way. There’s this little legal thing called Fair Use Doctrine. You can copyright material like this, but you cannot prevent others from quoting it while reviewing or criticizing it. You can read all about it here.