Problems With Old-Earth Dating Techniques – More Internal Contradictions Revealed


Earth is not 4.5 billion years old. This beautiful creation is no product of random forces.

Here’s a problem: Modern science tells us the Earth is 4.5 billion years old, but this “science” is flaky. “No way!” you say. Do you want proof?

Are you interested in reading something more in-depth that explains why, and produces compelling evidence to support this claim? In layman’s language, but also with numbers, charts, tables, and formulas?

Then click here to read the article at Science Against Evolution: “U-Series Dating”.

This article takes an in-depth look at the assumptions and measurements from the recent Spanish Cave Painting “discovery.”

The staff at Science Against Evolution digs out the supplementary materials from the Science Magazine database attached to the research paper and examines them underneath the lens of science. To quote an excerpt:

Of course, the ages of these paintings have nothing to do with evolution, so we don’t really care what they are. All we care about is that the measurements ranged from 164 years to 40,800 years, which hardly inspires confidence in the method.

The article explains the findings in ways that are easy for the layman to understand. The central problem, he explains, is that, in order to derive the old ages of the cave paintings, the research team brought forth evidence that brings the assumptions of old earth into question.

They didn’t discuss those implications in their paper. The results are typical; there are generally-accepted ways of dealing with them. The earth needs to be billions of years old for evolution to be plausible — and, therefore, for their explanations of “neanderthals” to be plausible. Their jobs and research careers depend on it; they won’t shake up such an established, well-funded industry. It’s easy to replace a dissenter with someone who is more pliable. So, the researchers apply the generally-accepted explanations without giving any (written) consideration to their validity.

If you make an assumption, you should test it for plausibility. What their evidence shows is that the actual data are out of line with their old-earth assumption. If they really were in search of facts, they would address these discrepancies and refine their methodologies.

What they would really do is admit that they don’t know the initial conditions, so they can’t truly solve their age-equations. Instead, they would admit that they are speculating instead of presenting the evidence as if it were absolutely certain. And we know their intent is focused: to push God out of the universe.

They do their hand-waving and roll right on through, even substituting more favorable numbers for the measured numbers in some places to produce results more in line with their expectations.

What is going on here? Since the actual evidence is inconsistent with the theory, they substitute preferred numbers for actual numbers to produce results that are consistent with the theory. This isn’t science.

RELIGIOUS PRESUPPOSITIONS INFLUENCE SCIENCE

Facts aren’t matching the theories. Underlying assumptions are contradicting each other. Paul wrote about these problems long ago — the problems of the darkened reasoning of man’s fallen mind:

They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. (Ephesians 4:18 ESV)

For  the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be  known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. (Romans 1:18-19 ESV, emphasis added)

Click here to go to the full article about problems with old-earth dating methods.

Obviously, this is good news for some people and bad news for others. But who would be the winners and the losers, especially when all we are talking about are facts and truth? Why would anyone want to ignore the facts and abandon the scientific quest for truth to produce a desired result or to go along with the “consensus”?

Now, obviously we at Rebuild America’s Biblical Worldview are biased in this debate. We believe we are on the side of Truth. (Genesis 1)

If you remain undecided, however, then to answer this question for yourself, you must look at the dividing line: Who is in favor of “old earth”? Who is against “old earth”? What’s at stake for each side?

If rebellious, unregenerate man is correct, then there is no final judgment. If he is wrong, then he faces eternal damnation for his ethical disobedience. The science must support his belief.

There is a fundamental truth that cannot be ignored: religious presuppositions influence science. Neutrality is a myth. One man’s idea of “unbiased science” is the suppression of another man’s beliefs.

THE BEGINNING OF KNOWLEDGE

Science should not begin with the scientific method. Science should begin with God. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge (Proverbs 1:7) and wisdom (Proverbs 9:10). Science is the pursuit of knowledge. To pursue science-based knowledge without respecting the Lord and his revealed truth leads to distorted theories and perverted wisdom.

Secular humanism is a religion: the religion of man as god; the pursuit of knowledge based on the reasoning abilities of man’s mind alone. Just because it has been defined as “neutral” in the US Constitution (and reinforced continuously throughout the years by the Supreme Court) by men who substituted the “voice of the people” for the sovereignty of God does not make it so.

It is at odds with Christianity. It is a religion that is (almost) as old as dirt:

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’? ” (Genesis 3:1)

Eve was tempted with a proposition: neutrality. “A truly enlightened person would choose to test all possibilities, not just take God’s word for it.” In doing so, her and Adam became rebellious, ethically disobedient children. For that, they — and all of creation — were cursed.

Read the full article here:

Science Against Evolution – U Series Dating

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7 responses to “Problems With Old-Earth Dating Techniques – More Internal Contradictions Revealed

  1. I haven’t checked through your entire methodology so I apologize if you explain the error later on, but the first thing I have an issue with is the quotation out of context when you mention “the measurements ranged from 164 years to 40,800 years, which hardly inspires confidence in the method.”

    The exact quote from the Science article that you reference is:
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________

    The samples were processed and U-series isotopes measured by using the method of Hoffmann et al. (9–11). Where sampling allowed a second aliquot to be taken, we tested the integrity of the calcite by comparing the dates of the upper layers of the calcite to those closer to the painting. In all cases, the date from the deeper sample was older, supporting the reliability of our method (11). Our U-series ages ranged from 0.164 to 40.8 ky [corresponding to radiocarbon ages of near modern to 35,500 radiocarbon years before the present (14C yr B.P.)].
    ______________________________________________________________________________________________

    What the 164 to 40,800 years is referring to is the U-series age of ALL the samples that were taken for testing, not just the ones used to date the painting. If you will notice, the paper mentions that upper layers of the calcite were dated too in addition to those closer to the painting. The point of this is to verify that the U-series dating gives correct results relative to the layer.

    The actual dating of the paintings, with a lower bound based on the above layer and an upper bound based on the below layer, is given in figure 2 just below the quote (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/336/6087/1409/F2.large.jpg). If you notice, the actual dating ranges are much smaller than the “164 to 40800” you mentioned.

    In terms of the 230Th/238U and 234U/238U ratio problems, I will have to look more into the cause of disequilibrium, but for now I will base my point on the causes that the paper/your article mentions. The article points out that the 234U/238U ratio should be closer to 0.0000553, which is apparently the ideal value given no natural disturbances. However, since there are natural disturbances, what is the justification for saying that the values should be closer to 0.00000553? Also, the article points out the ratio (with disturbances), should be on either side of 0.0000553 but again I do not understand the justification for this. For example, for the 234U/238U ratio, the article mentions that 234U is lighter and will dust farther in the wind. This would increase the amount of 234U which would increase the 234U/238U ratio, so the higher ratio would be expected based on this fact.

    I’m not quite sure I agree with the paper’s correction for detritus but again, that is something I will have to read more into. I look forward to hearing your response to these points.

    • Thanks for taking the time to leave feedback. I would recommend that you pose these questions to the author of the article at Science Against Evolution and seek his input, but I’ll provide my thoughts.

      I don’t disagree with the relative distribution of the sample points; the measuring technique should demonstrate that top layers are younger than bottom layers. The problem lies with the variation in ages. I believe the Earth to be approximately 6000 years old, so for the samples to span 40,000 years alerts me to error in the method.

      We find that error in the assumptions. It is assumed that whatever process formed Earth deposited some initial quantity of uranium and its isotopes. After 10 million years, whatever initial amount of U234 that had been deposited would have decayed almost entirely. No one could know what the initial ratios were because they weren’t here to measure them at the beginning — the guessing would be much more blatant.

      So the comfortable solution for humanist science is to assume that enough time has passed such that all of the initial deposits have decayed away; any quantity of U234 that we find on the earth today has to be produced by the decay of U238 only. (The assumption is that we’ve moved from a transient state to steady-state). That way we can simplify the problem.

      What the reported values show is that the lowest ratio measured among the caves was 0.7366 and the highest was 7.857; if the assumption of the old earth were true, then we may expect to find ratios higher or lower marginally than the expected value of 1.0. To apply an assumption of activity ratio of 1.0 for U234/U238 in equilibrium, the measured ratios should at least be in the ballpark of the prediction, one would think.

      They aren’t close because whatever initial distribution of U234 existed in the environment when the world was created hasn’t yet had time to decay completely. That’s why the ratios are much higher. The explanation given for the discrepancy is the influence of postulated natural disturbances.

      • I have sent my points to the writer as well so hopefully we can get a little more light on it. The other thing I am curious about is the basis for your assumption. The Science paper makes a few assumptions and the article criticizes the validity of these assumptions, but what is the basis for saying “I believe the Earth to be approximately 6000 years old, so for the samples to span 40,000 years alerts me to error in the method.”

        Also if you notice, the “disequilibrium” method is based on the fact that natural deposition processes (water/wind) is affecting the U234/U238 equilibrium measured.

        ” It is the degree of disequilibrium (measured as 230Th/238U activity ratio) that can be used together with the activity ratio of the two U isotopes 234U/238U to calculate the age of the calcite precipitation”

        For example, they assume that due to differences in water solubility, the initial amount of Th is zero. Whether or not this is a great assumption is up for debate (Th is much less soluble though), but it’s definitely true that there is no equilibrium at the formation since Th/U are carried differently. The whole reason that the method in the Science paper works at all is because the ratio is disturbed from the 0.0000553 by natural processes. As a result, we shouldn’t expect values close to this ideal ratio. Of course, we can debate on if their corrections for the dietritus is done well but I believe that’s a separate issue.

        To summarize: The article cites a Science paper which dates paintings based on the lack of equilibrium, and claims that the earth’s age is wrong because the article measured radioactivity that is not in equilibrium.

      • Please feel free to write back if you receive a response from the author.

        I believe the Earth to be approximately 6000 years old because the heavens, the earth, and all the universe were created in six days, as the Bible says — billions of years were not required because evolution is false. Saying that the Bible is incorrect is testifying against the Word of God. This is the temptation presented by Satan (Genesis 3:1, see the end of the above article). This is what we are doing when we assume billions of years over the truth revealed in the Bible.

        This “scientific process” still requires a fundamental assumption to be made: the Bible’s testimony is false. For example, the disequilibrium method: you are right, it is meant to be used in systems that have been “disturbed.” But the chain of reasoning goes like this:

        1) U234/U238 were in equilibrium
        2) There has been a natural disturbance to upset this equilibrium
        3) The system is trending back towards equilibrium
        4) We will use the “disequilibrium” method and measure Th230/U238 ratios to determine how much progress the system has made in re-establishing equilibrium since being disturbed.

        The assumption must still be made that the uranium isotopes were (and still are) in equilibrium. At a minimum, this would require approximately 1.7 million years to have passed to reach that state. This cannot be proven, only assumed. It is assumed because it eliminates the need to know the initial amount of uranium. We do not know the initial amounts because we were not here in the beginning to measure the quantity of initial deposits.

        This assumption is founded upon a religious presupposition: Christianity’s triune God is not real. This is rebellion against the Truth of God manifest to us in our hearts and in the order of His creation all around us (read Romans 1:16-32).

        Participating in this rebellion by utilizing the scientific method without a basis of God’s Word as truth leads to a distorted understanding of our universe. You are either with God or against Him; there is no middle ground, and there will be punishment (negative sanctions) for disobedience, as Jesus said: “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.” (Luke 11:23)

  2. I think this is where I stop in our little discussion, once Bible quotes are used to debate scientific evidence. There is no logical argument that can be made after this. It was interesting while it lasted though.

    I want to say I absolutely respect your religious beliefs, and the faith of others in general. However, I certainly hope that in the future, you will not use religious beliefs as a framework to answer scientific questions. Religion can be important in this world to govern our religion, but it is not an answer to how life works or how it formed….it is an answer to why these things occur and what purpose we ahve.

    • We must absolutely use the Biblical framework God has given us to conduct matters of science. We must take into captivity every thought and make it obedient to Christ. This includes scientific thought. (2 Corinthians 10:5)

  3. Obviously, if you start out with an infallible assumption and try to fit everything within that framework, it will not work very well with scientific data, especially if that assumption does not fit with collected evidence.

    What if I start out with a Spiderman comic and try to interpret everything with the assumption that Spiderman/other superheroes exist? I wouldn’t get very far trying to derive the laws of physics.

    The author of the post actually got back to me and we are emailing the professor behind the original Science paper to see what exactly he meant by the phrases mentioned.

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