‘Twelve Apostles’ shock!
When one of Australia’s best-known geological landmarks collapsed recently, it sure made a splash — not just in the water, but across the media front pages. This line from a news report was typical: ‘One of the famous Twelve Apostles collapsed yesterday into a heap of rubble, destroying in seconds a landmark nature had taken 20 million years to create.’
A National Parks officer said she was shocked by the collapse. ‘You think these structures are going to last for a while and certainly not actually see one collapse in your lifetime.’
And a tour guide was quoted as saying: ‘It’s pretty unbelievable … it won’t be the same sort of photo any more, but it is evolution.’
Actually, it’s neither unbelievable, nor evolution. The public reaction illustrates how people have been conditioned with geological ideas about ‘millions of years’ that do not match reality. Such sudden collapses of limestone cliffs and columns along Australia’s shoreline occur frequently enough that people shouldn’t be surprised. But conditioned as they are to think of slow-and-gradual processes over long ages, rapid erosion comes as a shock to many.
If only more people appreciated the geological effects of Noah’s Flood, they would be more aware of geological hazards, and not think that the rocks are a permanent feature of the landscape. These eroding ‘Apostles’ on Australia’s south coast have a similar message to the original Apostles of Jesus’ time, one concerned with the authority and reliability of God’s Word. This world is young, just as the Bible records.
- The Age, <www.theage.com.au/national/ninth-apostle-crumbles-20050704-ge0gco.html>, 4 July 2005. [Editor: Link updated February 2023]