Example of relative and absolute dating. Dream Bible Dream Dictionary- Letter W
When a new fossil is discovered, geologists assign a date for when they think the plant or animal lived. They normally use radiometric dating methods to date the. See also the discussions on Dating a Young Earth and Biblical Earth Dating Here we outline some dating methods, both absolute and relative, that are widely accepted In other words, half of the radioactive isotope in a sample would have . A Christian response to radiometric dating Image ann-estetyka.info CMI Editors Once Christians start to abandon the Bible as their authority they run into trouble. For example, on the Talk Origins website, a site that is aggressively.
Geologic Dating Methods: Are They Always Accurate?
Geologists use this method to date volcanic rocks that may be as much as 4 billion to 5 billion years old. Many minerals contain radioactive K potassium 40 isotopes, which decay at a known rate into Ar argon 40 gas. Scientists use a device called a spectrometer to measure the accumulation of Ar in relation to amounts of K The ratio of these elements can indicate the age of a geologic layer, generally since it last underwent a metamorphosis, such as melting under the heat of molten lava from a volcanic eruption.
Thus, geologic layers rich in volcanic deposits lend themselves to potassium-argon dating. When the original sample of the volcanic tuff was given to the laboratory, the potassium-argon date was about million years.
This date would mean that men lived during the time of the dinosaurs and would upset the evolutionary timescale. So new samples were sent and finally a date of 2. Since evolutionary theory is generally assumed to be true, it is to be expected that dates that do not fit the evolutionary timescale will be reexamined or dismissed. But does this assumption lead to circular reasoning and wrong conclusions?
Assumptions of these methods In order to calibrate these dates, geologists must use certain assumptions: The amount of the radioactive element at the time of origin is known.
The rate of decay of the radioactive element is the same throughout time. There has been no contamination or loss of the radioactive element or the radioactive decay products since being formed in the sample. Problems can occur when using these assumptions.
The Bible shows that before the Flood in Genesis 7, conditions were different on the earth. Adam lived for years.
Clearly something was different during that period of time. Perhaps there were atmospheric differences that could have affected the amount of radioactive material produced at that time. Scientists have to assume that C production has been a constant in order to calibrate their dating methods. Yet it is known that the amount of C in the atmosphere has changed over time, and the amount of C in the atmosphere varies. The nuclear bomb tests of the s, for example, actually changed the amount of radioactive carbon in the atmosphere.
Another problem with radiometric dating methods is the assumption about the amount of the original radioactive element. How do we know exactly how much potassium was originally in the volcanic rock?
As we will see, this method clearly can give erroneous dates for strata. Even the method used for dating a sample can lead to dramatic changes in dates for an item. National Geographic Magazine explained that a different dating method for C indicated the oldest Maya civilization was not nearly as old as earlier data had indicated.
A thousand years is a very large error! Scientists use the term absolute to distinguish from relative dating methods. When fossil A is found in rock strata below a rock layer containing fossil B, fossil A can generally be dated as older, relative to fossil B. That is relative dating. Yet many presume these dating methods are absolute in terms of certainty. This is misleading, since dates determined by radiometric dating methods are not always absolute at all.
Age of the Earth: strengths and weaknesses of dating methods
Environmental conditions Erroneous dates can occur when the environment has affected the sample. For example, the C dates of living mollusks found in rivers can give anomalous dates.
In an article published in Science, M. They found that living freshwater mollusks give anomalous dates of up to 3, years old. This is caused by the absorption of C from ancient plant remains in humus. Here we find that the environment can seriously affect the amount of C found in living creatures.
This distinction is important, because The Bible is not a newspaper which is concerned with journalistic accuracy and integrity.
Likewise, it is not a science textbook concerned with accuracy of certain facts and formulas. The authorial intent of any text should be kept in mind when reading any work and evaluating it's accuracy in a given context. This then means that as readers, we need to ask ourselves the intent of the author in including genealogies.
The Age of the Earth
Genealogies simply do not mean the same thing to western audiences as they did to their original audience. We therefore often miss that the point of the genealogies is to provide credibility and lend importance and credibility to an individual, such as the patriarchs and Jesus himself. In much the same way that Kings and Kights were only important because of their Royal blood, so too was it in the ancient Middle East.
The genealogies are also used to provide a structure, framework or outline to the book of Genesis using the Toledot which divides Genesis into 12 sections. Because the Genealogies of Genesis do not agree from manuscript to manuscriptthe lifespans given in the text are comically long and unsupported by archaeology and the young earth timeline just doesn't match up with archaeological evidence, it is doubtful that the chronological information in Genesis is accurate.
This is not a problem for the informed reader however, because as Richard Rohrbaugh makes abundantly clear in his presentation to the Biblical Archeological societythis is not the purpose of the text, and to the extent ages are provided it is only provided in order to bolster the honor claim being made. We should not be asking ourselves if the years and days are accurate, but instead if the Genealogical information is accurate and Jesus truely is the Son of God and descendant of the Patriarchs.