Monday, July 27, 2009

The Age of Earth

A reader of Just Genesis has sent 9 questions which she would like for me to address. I will post answers to these questions in the next few weeks. The first question is: "What do you believe about the age of the Earth?"

Answer: I believe that science is a reliable source of information about the age of the Earth and that science and Scripture are not in conflict on this question.

The Earth is at least 3.5 billion years old because the oldest Earth rocks date to about 3.5 billion years. These are dated using several radiometric dating methods. Rocks dating to 3.5 billion years have been found on five continents. Some of these rocks include minerals which are as old as 4.2 billion years. Rocks of this age are fairly rare however.

Most scientists place the Earth's age at between 4.2 and 4.55 billion years and the universe at about 14 billion years. (For more on this, go here.)

Bishop Usher's dating of the Earth at 10,000 years is based on a misunderstanding of the nature of the Genesis genealogies, some of which are telescopic, leaving out some of the ruler-priests who might have appeared in a complete sequential listing. He also didn't recognize that Cain and Seth, who are presented as the offspring of Adam and Eve, lived at a time when tribal government, laws and religious offices were already well established.

Analysis of the Genesis 4 and 5 geneological information reveals that Cain and Seth married sisters who were the daughters of an African chief named Nok (Enoch). The Nok civilization was in west central Africa and is dated to between 30,000 and 2000 years ago. Cain lived closer to the time of Noah's flood (about 8000 years ago) than he did to the time of the appearance of the oldest known human fossils dating to 160,000 years ago.

The 160,000 date for the first "modern humans" is disputed by some who believe that older fossils dating to 3 million years also represent human populations despite the nomenclature of convergence evolutionists and the artistic drawings of ape-like creatures.

Scientists have found a fish dating to 350 million years and the Fossil Fuels Brewing Company produces beer from a yeast strain that has lain dormant for up to 45 million years.

To read the various theories of creation, go here.

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