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Carbon-14 In Recent Creation

“Carbon-14 and Recent Creation” 



Various data and numerical statistics are discussed. Properly understood, these data render C-14 dating techniques relatively reliable only within a few thousand years before present and point to a recent creation.



The Radiocarbon Journal sponsored by The Regents of The University of California states: “Radiocarbon, or Carbon-14, dating is probably one of the most widely used and best known absolute dating methods [italics added]. It was developed by J. R. Arnold and W.F. Libby in 1949, and has become an indispensable part of the archaeologist’s tool kit since. Its development revolutionized archaeology by providing a means of dating deposits independent of artifacts and local stratigraphic sequences. This allowed for the establishment of world-wide chronologies.”[1] Yet, in the same article the astounding admission is made, “although radiocarbon is the most common and widely used chronometric technique in archaeology today, it is not infallible [italics added]. In general, single dates should not be trusted.”[2]


The general public is unaware of the fact that this dating method has major flaws. It has been used more than any other method to discredit the recent dates of the Biblical record and to cast doubt on the recent creation of the Earth and the Universe. Just how accurate is this dating method, and what are the essential details that should be considered?


I.   How the Carbon Clock Works…

“Carbon-14 is made when cosmic rays knock neutrons out of atomic nuclei in the upper atmosphere. These displaced neutrons, now moving fast, hit ordinary nitrogen at lower altitudes, converting it into C-14. Unlike common carbon, C-14 is unstable and slowly decays, changing it back to nitrogen and releasing energy. This instability makes it radioactive…[Both common carbon and radioactive carbon] combine with oxygen to produce carbon dioxide, and so it gets cycled through the cells of plants and animals…The rate of decay of C-14 is such that half of an amount will convert back to Nitrogen-14 in 5,730 years (plus or minus 40 years).”[3]


II.   Factors Affecting Carbon Dating…

“The ratio of C-14/C-12 in the atmosphere has not been constant. For example, it was higher before the industrial era when the massive burning of fossil fuels released a lot of carbon dioxide that was depleted in C-14. This would make things that died at that time appear older in terms of carbon dating. Then there was a rise in radioactive carbon dioxide with the advent of atmospheric testing of atomic bombs in the 1950’s. This would make things carbon dated from that time appear younger than their true age.”[4]


The amount of cosmic rays penetrating the earth’s atmosphere affects the amount of C-14 produced and therefore affects the interpretation of the dating system. A stronger magnetic field [such as our earth possessed before the Genesis flood] deflects more cosmic rays away from the earth. The world-wide flood itself buried huge amounts of  normal carbon, that became coal, oil, etc., lowering the C-12 in the biosphere and skewing the interpretation of the data. Volcanic activity, universally prevalent at the time of the Genesis flood, emitted great amounts of carbon dioxide depleted in radioactive carbon. Fossils formed in the early post-flood period would give radiocarbon ages older than they really are.[5]


III.  Do the Math…

The RATE group at the Institute for Creation Research carbon-dated diamonds from several varied sources, previously assumed to contain no radiocarbon because of their assigned ages of hundreds of millions of years. Each specimen contained measurable C-14 and dated just thousands of years![6] John Baumgardner, Ph.D. was involved in this research project and demonstrates that if one started with an amount of pure C-14 equal to the mass of the entire observable universe, after 1.5 million years there should not be a single atom of C-14 remaining![7] Properly calculated, the diamonds themselves are only a few thousand years old.


IV.   Significant and Erroneous Carbon-14 Estimates…

“[T]he radiocarbon method is still not capable of yielding accurate and reliable results. There are gross discrepancies, the chronology is uneven and relative, and the accepted  dates are actually selected dates. This whole blessed thing is nothing but 13th-century alchemy, and it all depends on which funny paper you read.”[8] “The C-14 contents of the shells of the snails of Melanoides tuberculatus living today in artesian springs in southern Nevada indicate an apparent age of 27,000 years.”[9]

 Conclusion:Unfounded assumptions used in C-14 dating have led to unwarranted discrediting of the Biblical record and recent estimates of the Earth and universal history. The data are now more complete and actually support the Biblical record and recent creation. 


[2] Ibid


[4] Ibid

[5] Ibid

[6] Morris, John, The Young Earth, Master Books, 2008, p. 67


[8] Lee, Robert E., “Radiocarbon Ages in Error,” Anthropological Journal of Canada, Vol. 19, No. 4 (1981), pp. 9-29

[9] Riggs, Alan C., Science, Vol. 224 (April 6, 1984), pp. 58-61

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