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Index Fossils
© Robert E. Gentet 2020

An index fossil is a concept that sprang from William “Strata” Smith (1769-1839), an Englishman who first noticed characteristic fossils exist only in certain rock layers. He also published the first nationwide geological map. He did not use his discovery to show evolution, but rather for identification purposes of tracing rock layers over great distances by their fossil content. The fact that certain plants and animals are only found in certain geologic layers does not, of itself, prove the theory of evolution. For that to be true, developing links would have to be discovered between new, distinct types of life forms. This is seldom shown today, except on changes within the same life forms.

The Bible does not prohibit species from changing. The phrase “after its kind” found repeatedly in Genesis 1 simply means that each life form has its own set limits for variation. God put within plants and animals the ability to adapt (to a limited degree) to changing conditions. Such smaller changes are often used by evolutions as evidences for the general theory of evolution (all life came from one original lifeform). Instead, life types we can readily observe around us, as well as in fossils, clearly show a remarkable lack of transitional forms between kinds. We see nothing developing into a bird, into a fish, etc.

In geology, index fossils have been used to define geologic time periods. In reality, index fossils show a development of the food webs in distinct ecosystems (marine and continental). Simply put, specific types of plants and animals first appear and last appear in the fossil record as conditions permit. The essential factor is a food source. Each food chain depends upon something else to exist. When enough different kinds of life find themselves without a food source, a major catastrophe in the ecosystem happens. Geology reveals a number of such major extinctions have happened.

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