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History 3: Antiquity

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  1. 1. Orientation
    12 Steps
  2. 2. Imago Dei: Creation
    13 Steps
  3. 3. The Two Cities: The Fall & Two Lineages
    11 Steps
  4. 4. Look On My Works, Ye Mighty: Babel & Mesopotamia
    11 Steps
  5. 5. The Waters of Life in the Everlasting Hills: Ancient Egypt
    11 Steps
  6. 6. Lekh-Lekha: Abraham & The Patriarchs
    11 Steps
  7. 7. On Eagles' Wings: The Exodus & The Law
    12 Steps
  8. 8. The Sacrifice of Praise: Worship in Ancient Israel
    13 Steps
  9. 9. A House of Prayer for All Nations: Samuel to Solomon
    11 Steps
  10. 10. The Ways of the Father: Prophets & Kings
    11 Steps
  11. 11. I Form Light and Create Darkness: The Exile, Medes & Persians, and Israel's Return
    11 Steps
  12. 12. Beyond Life and Death: India
    11 Steps
  13. 13. Immutable Tradition: China
    12 Steps
  14. 14. Honor Versus Life: Old Japan
    13 Steps
  15. 15. The Smoke of 1,000 Villages: Sub-Saharan Africa
    11 Steps
  16. 16. In Search of the Unknown God: Greek Stories & Early History
    12 Steps
  17. 17. Nostoi & Empire: Greece Versus Persia
    11 Steps
  18. 18. The Glory That Was Greece: The Golden Age
    11 Steps
  19. 19. The One and the Many: The Peloponnesian War & Philosophers
    11 Steps
  20. 20. To the Strongest: Alexander the Great
    11 Steps
  21. 21. Make Straight the Highway: Between the Testaments
    12 Steps
  22. 22. The Grandeur That Was Rome: The Roman Republic
    11 Steps
  23. 23. The War of Gods & Demons: The Conquest of Italy, Carthage, and Greece
    13 Steps
  24. 24. Crossing the Rubicon: The Fall of the Roman Republic
    11 Steps
  25. 25. Pax Romana: Caesar Augustus
    11 Steps
  26. 26. The Everlasting Man: Jesus Christ
    12 Steps
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The following transcript was automatically generated and may contain errors in spelling and/or grammar. It is provided for assistance in note-taking and review.

Welcome to our final lecture for the week. We’re actually going to be taking a look today at prehistoric man. Some of the artifacts we have, how we might explain this as creationists, but we’ll actually start out with some of the fossils of the hominids. creatures that appear to be of the same genus as mankind, those homo genus that is, as well as some that are similar it would seem but are also quite different.

So just to give you an idea, kind of a quick overview, we could take a look for example at Australopithecus afarensis, a species that has been discovered, its fossils have been discovered that is, at four different sites in East Africa.

This includes the famous Lucy. This is a creature that is seen as special because it walked on two legs. That’s based upon kind of where the spine enters into the skull. It also had a larger brain than previous species that it seems related to. And there’s even some evidence that it may have used some kind of primitive stone tool. So we’re gonna kind of take a look at these and then kind of talk about what this might actually mean. The next one we’ll take a look at is actually one from the Homo genus. That’s the Homo habilis species. It had a 50% larger brain size than Australopithecus. And brain size is a really big deal, often, to evolutionists because it’s seen as one of the key things to making us smarter and making us more evolved. These creatures also are found in East Africa. And they’re found at two different sites. They also use stone tools, usually associated with what’s called the Oldowan stone tool time period, or what they call an industry, actually. Then we have Homo erectus. This is a little bit more interesting. This one actually has an even larger brain case, has more human-like teeth, has more evidence of using tools, actually more advanced axes, for example, what they call the Aeculian axes.

There’s evidence that these people used fire and things like that. It’s not so much that the others didn’t use fire, it’s just that we just happen to have evidence that Homo erectus actually did. It’s also a curious one too, because this particular species, if it is indeed its own species, and there’s all kinds of debate here, I mean, we’re looking at a topic that has so much debate amongst creationists, even amongst evolutionists, not just with each other, but amongst themselves. But Homo erectus has apparently been found everywhere from Turkey to Georgia, that is the country of Georgia, to South Africa, to China and Indonesia.

Then we have Homo neanderthalus. These, of course, are the famous neanderthals, your kind of your traditional cavemen. They have an even larger brain case, one that sometimes could be larger than ours. They tend to look more human. We have evidence that they buried their dead, that they made more advanced tools, this time out of bone, that they decorated things, or that they wore jewelry, often out of shells and things like that.

They’ve been found everywhere from Western Europe to the Middle East to Siberia. And then of course, we have Homo sapiens. This is considered modern man, that is dated to coming out of Africa, or at least being in Africa, something like 200,000 years ago. So this is kind of the general, a really fast overview of the fossil record. There’s a whole lot more we can look at. But usually what people say is when you’re looking at these, you see kind of like the development of larger brain, you seem to see a development of greater stone tools and things like that.

You kind of see the development of culture. But there are some issues that pop up, too. Such as, for example, we have some of these Homo species, particularly Homo erectus, getting all around the world or in some cases other Homo species getting around the world to places like Crete for example where they have found axes that show up there a lot earlier than I think they should be there or places like the island of Flores in Indonesia where this hobbit like hominem has been found or hominid has been found that appears to have gotten there as well a long time before it was thought people could get there and the reason why these are issues is because to get to these islands, which you have to cross open sea, even accounting for lower seas during say an ice age period, you still have to cross multiple miles of open sea, which would most likely require some kind of watercraft that would have to be designed and put together.

Something that apes don’t do, something that even most people are not going to venture and just You say, “Hey, I’m gonna put together a raft and go sail across this open water to see what’s out there.” I mean, that is, of course, a distinct trait of the human spirit, but it’s also one that takes a conquering of fear. So we have questions like that. Or we also have, for example, with those same creatures found in Indonesia, the fact that they have really small brains, and it was kind of thought, at least for a while, that the smaller the brain, the less developed, the less intelligent.

But this has been challenged by, for example, Homo naledi. These hobbit-like creatures again, they’re probably only four feet tall, and had very small brains that were found having obviously buried each other at the bottom of this cave in South Africa, in an area that’s so dark that it looks like no animal would have taken them there. It looks like they actually brought each other into this cave and carefully laid each other out. In other words, we have something distinctly human, the burial of the dead and the honoring of the dead. And then of course, there’s other interesting anomalies, such as some of these different species appear to be interacting with each other. So for example, we have a cave in Siberia known as Denisova, where the bones of a homo sapien or a Denisovan woman, as she’s sometimes called, were found. And it was discovered, assuming discoveries are accurate, that she had Neanderthal DNA her and it’s also been measured that most people descended from people of Europe or Asia also have a certain percentage of Neanderthal DNA inside them. In other words, these different hominids appear to be interacting with each other and actually having children together which would signal some kind of community together.

So the idea that one is much more advanced or evolved than the other is challenged even by that reality. We have another example of this in the state, or in the country rather, of Georgia, which curiously has just turned miles from error. That’s what we’re looking at here. We’re looking at where do people go after the flood and it would seem as if some of these fossils are suggesting where people went.

It’s here at a place called Domeneci. Five skulls have been found, all apparently of the Homo erectus species. dated to 1.8 million years ago, far earlier, again throwing off the timeline of traditional evolution here. And these skulls had some great variety to them. One skull was of an adolescent. One skull was a very old person who had lost all their teeth, which implied that they were being cared for by someone else. They would not have been able to as easily survive without their teeth. And then of course there’s this fifth skull, it’s just called Skull Five, which out of all the skulls that have been found, had the smallest brain case, even smaller than the adolescent, had a very protruding, almost ape-like face, very large teeth, a very large mouth, and yet was found to apparently be in the same like community with these other skulls.

It’s found in the same area, the same level. In other words, this find right here has challenged the idea of can you take a skull and just because it has different shapes, Does that truly make it less human?

Or is it possible that skulls can vary greatly within the same species? That’s actually the question that scientists or researchers at the University of Zurich asked, and they actually measured human skulls, and found out that human skulls alone, amongst modern humans, current contemporary humans, can vary so much that they actually match the degree of differences found at the skulls at Domeneci in Georgia.

Which brings us ultimately to yet another issue, and that’s called the sapient paradox. It’s kind of this mystery amongst humanity, seeing as modern man is called homo sapien, which really means wise human. It was proposed by an evolutionary scientist, a prehistorian, so to speak, named Colin Renfrew, a brilliant writer. And I’ll read to you what he says. He says, “If the arrival of the new species, “homo sapiens,” that’s us, “with its higher level of cognitive capacity,” that is the greater ability to think, “with its new kind of behavior,” the behaviors we exhibit like making art and music, “with its sophisticated use of language, its enhanced self-consciousness, if that was so significant, why did it take so long for these really impressive innovations like art and music or like settled village life with farming?

Why did it take so long for those innovations to come about? Specifically, he asked the question, why is it that we have supposedly Homo sapiens fully developed or fully evolved in Africa 200,000 years ago according to the model. Why is it that it takes them 160,000 years, or until about 40,000 years ago, for them to develop art, for them to develop complex tools, or as much as 10,000 years ago, for them to develop farming? Which raises even other questions. Why is it that the kind of complex culture we’re talking about has mostly been found closer to the Middle East and not closer to Africa, where all of these things were supposed to begin.

It’s possible, just hasn’t been found yet. Africa has not been as explored, let’s say, as much as the Middle East. That’s true. But these are interesting questions to begin thinking about ’cause if we’re considering Genesis and we’re considering a flood world and we’re considering that it was Noah and his sons and their wives afterwards, and that from Ararat they all dispersed, in fact, we’re told in Genesis 9.20 that from these three sons came all the children of the world, We have to look at this, if we’re going to take Genesis seriously, as being the model from which to work. A few more things I’ll point out before we take a look at the artifacts. One is the study done by Todd Wood, who is a creationist and biologist, in which he came up with 400 different characteristics, 400 different aspects of the shape of skulls.

And he looked at all the different species, well not all of them, but several different species found, all these different hominids. And as he compared them, he found that those of the homo or the homo species were all alike more than those of the Australopithecus and modern ape species or the genus of Australopithecus.

In other words, he found that those that we would call the homo genus are much more human and those that we call the Australopithecus are much more ape-like.

In other words, when we look at these fossils, if we consider it from a creationist perspective, we’re probably either looking at ancient humans or we’re looking at ancient apes. So this leads us kind of to understanding how did this all come to be? Well, it’s helpful to note that from a creationist perspective, if there was a global flood, then most of our fossils were created at that time.

But all of these fossils of these hominids, they’re all in the upper layer. was known as the Cenozoic, that top layer of the fossil record. And so they would appear, according to the Croatia’s model, to be after the flood. They would appear, some Croatia’s think it was after the floods, some think it was after Babel, whatever the case may be. It fits within this well because it’s considered that after the flood you had so much volcanic activity, so many earthquakes and things like that, so many local floods still going on, that this was a very catastrophic period.

And so it’s quite possible that man stayed in one area for a while and slowly spread out, or that as he spread out, he suffered all kinds of setbacks just from natural phenomenon.

This also is usually used to explain how the Ice Age developed, with all of this excess heat going to the atmosphere, as it cooled down and it created more precipitation, in turn led to an ice age.

Of course, these are arguments that can be much more deliberately looked at by creationist scientists to have more data to actually back them up.

We can’t go to those details here in a history lecture. We’re not going to at least. But what they typically look at, the creationist model is, is that these different hominids, they’re different species of man. They are of mankind. So they’re different species, but they are all the same actual kind. And then that would lead us to these artifacts we get from them, these Stone Age artifacts that come from places or times like the Paleolithic Age or the Neolithic Age and so forth.

The argument would be from a creationist model that these were either post-Flood or post-Babel. If they’re post-Flood, it would make sense because they’re coming off of the Ark. They’re having to begin civilization once again, so that would take some time and some doing. Or perhaps it was post-Babel, perhaps technology was set far back after Babel. There are different views on that and so forth. But all of these things are definitely before what we call the Bronze Age, which according to conventional dates begins sometime around say 3300 BC.

But either way, what we’re probably looking at is we’re probably looking at what we see in Genesis 10 with the Table of Nations, which tells us about Noah’s three sons, which gives us specific names, and those names can therefore be traced to different places and things like that. That itself is a study that’s worthy of looking at in detail. But let’s take a moment to take a look at what are the artifacts that have actually been found. And the first one, or the first category of artifacts that we can look at are tools. And keep in mind, we’re looking at artifacts that show that man is mannish. Zamago-Dei. So first of all it’s worth pointing out that animals make tools. In fact bonobos have been known to actually make stone tools at least those that live in captivity have been known to make stone tools to extract food from a log that was placed there by researchers.

We also have very old tools from Africa from what is called the Lomekwi period or Lomekwi location very primitive tools, what they call essentially these worked pebbles, actually they may even be less than that, something that may have simply been used to get meat off of a bone, we’re not really sure. It might be associated with some of those early Australopithecus. In other words, it might very well have been some kind of tool used by an ape, and it’s quite possible that those would be found first because after the Ark rested, it’s more conceivable that animals would have spread out more quickly than mankind, because mankind is a social creature and also because animals quite frankly reproduce more quickly, they come to adulthood and maturity more quickly, so they would presumably have more mobility.

Again, these are models we’re working with. Genesis does not go into the details of how all of these things actually work. But going on with tools, we have this curious time period called the Oldowan Time Period. Actually, it’s an industry, really, of these tools that have been found in Africa, and then similar tools like them have been found all over the world.

But these tools often have deliberately shaped sides, sometimes two sharp sides. They can be used as types of choppers, they can be used as scrapers, they can be used as awls to poke holes in things, such as if you want to poke a hole in a shell for jewelry.

And most curiously, they have found what appear to be bierens, these types of engraving tools, tools, which would be very specific because that would hint at some kind of art production from a very early time period.

Or for example, we look at Achulean tools. These are tools that have much greater design, that definitely show an advanced form of thinking and advanced form of shaping, such as an axe head.

Or by the time we get to what’s known as the Magdalenian industry, we find these very complex harpoons actually have an incredible amount of beauty to them. Eventually when we look at places like Anatolia, close to that Ararat site, Anatolia is modern-day Turkey, we find there the very first evidence of people using copper as a type of material to make things from.

So So we begin to see a pattern here of culture developing, of culture settling down, quite possibly after the flood, and doing so in progressive fashion rather than simply evolutionary fashion over millions of years.

We also have evidence that people are bearing each other, and are bearing each other often not just deliberately like we saw with in the Naledi cave down in South Africa, but are bearing each other with a sense of art.

So for example, we have the site at Sungir, Russia, where we see a man who is buried in clothing that is covered in thousands of ivory beads.

Or we see, for example, a site in Lake Mungo, which is actually Australia, far, far away from any other places we’ve talked about, where you have another burial there where someone is covered, apparently, in some kind of red ochre, suggesting that paint was used as a part of the burial.

We also begin to see the very first evidence of dwellings, beginning with simple huts or kind of like tent-like structures made from mammoth bones.

We find these in Russia, we find these in Ukraine, we find these in Czech Republic, or evidence that is of these things. We eventually see actual civilizations or actual towns pop up in, of all places, Anatolia. not too far from where they think the very first agriculture actually began. So we have places for example like Glebeke Tepe, which probably had the world’s first temple. We have the famous site of Ketelahayek, which was entirely residential and may have had as many as 10,000 people. A place that had ornate murals. A place that had clear places where they put all of their trash, because they actually found that the houses did not have a lot of waste and they seem to be kind of kept clean.

A place that had its own cemetery or buried its dead underneath their houses. A place where we have found things such as the very first fabrics that have been woven together probably using some kind of loom. Or a place that has the very first mirrors made from obsidian which is rather reflective material. So we begin to see the advance of culture as man settles down he’s able to do more and more and more. That’s why I would argue it makes sense to say that this is post-flood leading up to Babel. But then of course really the greatest testimony of the creativity of prehistoric man and the fact that man is man is art. I find this very curious. Stephen Mithen, a researcher of Reading University, says quote “there is evidence that pigments were being used by our ancestors in Africa 150,000 years ago and that later around 70,000 years ago they were engraving patterns on objects. Here’s the key part. He says it was not though until modern humans reached Europe more than 40,000 years ago when there appears to have been an explosion of technical creativity that art as we understand today appeared. The results were breathtaking indeed I don’t think they have ever been surpassed. Randall White, a writer on prehistoric art, says, “‘Cause at least 40,000 years ago, “all modern humans everywhere “have practiced material forms of representation.” He even points out that there’s not really a clear development of the art. It doesn’t really move from really, really primitive to more advanced. He says it seems to have a deliberate design and a craft from the beginning. He says the differences you find in them seem to be based more upon the region they’re discovered in or even maybe the culture that they were in than they do based upon time. So we can take a look at some of these things. We have tons of this. We’ll just take a look at a few of them today. But for example, we see jewelry. We see, for example, eggshell or beads made from ostrich eggshells found in the border cave of South Africa. we see perforated shells and sharp teeth probably used on necklaces that were found in France, some 200 kilometers from where they would have been found naturally.

Then of course, we see paintings, all kinds of cave paintings, especially in Western Europe, in places like Ultimaira, Spain, where you have these magnificent bison where the artist actually chose shapes on the cave ceiling that reminded him of bison and then painted them to fit that shape.

Or consider this, look at this one here from the Grotte Chauvet in France, and look at these paintings of rhinoceros. First of all, you’ll notice we have multiple images of them, but I want you to pay attention to the fact that even though that they are outlined in black, the artist also used white to make contrast, so the image pops out more.

Not only did the artist use this kind of chalk to make a contrast, look at the top rhinoceros. And do you see how he appears to be drawn almost multiple times, especially his horn? It’s been suggested, and perhaps it’s accurate, that this multiple drawing of the horn of the rhinoceros is to show movement. Or look at, for example, at the spear thrower made from reindeer antler showing two different ibexes facing each other. Perhaps they’re fighting, perhaps they’re embracing, we don’t know, but there are hundreds of tiny marks to actually show the fur on this. In other words, it’s a very detailed work. Of course, this next one here, of three lions engraved on a rib bone, with you see one lion in full here. It has remarkable anatomy, has remarkable movement. It is truly naturalistic, meaning it’s done by an artist who really studied this animal in the wild. In fact, there have been studies done to show that what’s remarkable about prehistoric art is it actually does a better job, usually, of showing animals naturalistically and in their real-life habitat and with their behaviors and even their gait, better than, say, artists even of the 19th century.

And then, of course, we have evidence of music. One study that was done from the University of Paris not too long ago found that out of all the caves, there are multiple rooms that have art in them and the multi-rooms that don’t, but the rooms that do have art in them, in 90% of the case, those are the rooms that have the best acoustics out of all the rooms in the cave.

Now, that may not be a big deal, but it at least hints at the fact that perhaps this is being used with some kind of musical purpose.

But of course, we have better evidence in the fact that we have, for example, flutes. We have flutes made from things like vulture bones that were found in the Pyrenees in France with four different holes on them that is clearly an instrument.

In other words, what we know about prehistoric man is that he is truly mannish. And that would seem to go with the account of Genesis and especially what makes a man a man.