Carbon is the fourth most common element in the universe (after hydrogen, helium, and oxygen), and it is part of all forms of animal and plant life. It is the second most abundant element in human bodies (18.5% by mass) after oxygen.
Carbon-14 (14C) is a naturally occurring radioactive isotope of carbon used in carbon dating. A 14C atom has 6 protons and 8 neutrons, compared with normal carbon (12C) which has 6 protons and 6 neutrons.
Carbon-14 occurs in very small amounts. It comprises about 1 or 1.5 atoms per 1012 atoms of atmospheric carbon.
Carbon-14 has a “short” half-life of 5,730 ± 40 years. Radiometric dating generally can’t go beyond 10 half-lives due to the difficulty of measuring such a minuscule amount remaining after 10 half-lives. This limits Carbon-14 dating to about 50-60,000 years at a max.
Yet all natural carbon samples contain significant 14C, thereby indicating ages well under 50,000 years. Scientists have been unable to explain this with billion-year-old earth models.
Recently creationist researchers had independent labs measure 14C in 10 separate coal samples — supposedly 34-311 million years old. The labs found Carbon-14 in each of the samples — impossible if the samples were really millions of years old.
Twelve diamond samples were also analyzed. Diamonds are pure carbon, and 14C was found inside each. Diamonds are supposedly at least a billion years old and therefore should have no Carbon-14. Radioactive dating of diamonds with Carbon-14 shows they are only thousands of years old, not billions.
Diamonds are a creationist’s best friend.
Similar analysis has been done on fossil and oil samples thought to be very “old,” yet 14C is always found. The presence of 14C is conclusive evidence that samples are not millions of years old, but only thousands.
Subsequent posts will give more examples of scientific clocks that give short ages consistent with the Biblical record of a 6,000-year-old earth.
Soli Deo Gloria.
This is the 40th in a series of blog posts on the Age of the Earth. I began with the Biblical testimony that the earth is 6,000 years old, because the evidence from nature should be interpreted and understood in the light of clear Biblical truth. The prequels have considered the issue’s importance, what Jesus thought, the Genesis genealogies, and the historic teaching of the church. Current articles are discussing scientific evidence on the age of the earth, explaining fallacies of radiometric dating methods and giving examples of scientific methods which yield short ages in line with the Biblical record.
Read the prequels:
1. How Old Is the Earth?
2. Why Is the Age of the Earth Important?
3. Earth: Young or Old?
4. Age of the Earth—Jesus’ View
5. Age of the Earth—Jesus Interpreted OT Literally
6. Age of the Earth—What Did Jesus Say?
7. Age of the Earth—What Did Jesus’ Contemporaries Think?
8. Age of the Earth—Genealogies
9. Age of the Earth—What Does Begat Mean?
10. Age of the Earth—Interlocking Genealogies
11. Age of the Earth—Any Gaps in Genealogies?
12. Age of the Earth—No Gaps in Genealogies
13. Age of the Earth—Any Missing Generations?
14. Age of the Earth—Scriptural Confirmation (Adam to Noah)
15. Age of the Earth—Scriptural Confirmation (Noah to Abraham)
16. Age of the Earth—Luke’s Testimony
17. Age of the Earth—Luke & Cainan Puzzle
18. Age of the Earth—Luke & Cainan Explanation
19. Age of the Earth—Add It Up
20. Age of the Earth—6,000 Years Old
21. Age of the Earth—History’s View
22. Age of the Earth—Church Fathers’ Opinion
23. Age of the Earth—Josephus, Luther, Calvin
24. Age of the Earth—Archbishop Ussher
25. Age of the Earth—Prof. James Strong
26. Age of the Earth—Kepler & Newton
27. Age of the Earth—Dr. William Hales
28. Age of the Earth—Prof. Leupold
29. Age of the Earth—Prof. Barr
30. Age of the Earth—History’s Opinion
31. Age of the Earth—Radiometric Dating
32. Age of the Earth—Scientific Clocks
33. Age of the Earth—Radioactive Decay Clocks
34. Age of the Earth—Radiometric Dating Fallacies
35. Age of the Earth—Invalid Radiometric Dates
36. Age of the Earth—Therefore…
37. Age of the Earth—Evidences
38. Age of the Earth—Scientific Clock Ages
39. Age of the Earth—Accuracy of Scientific Clocks
Read the sequel:
41. Age of the Earth—Oceans
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©William T. Pelletier, Ph.D.
“contending earnestly for the faith”
“destroying speculations against the knowledge of God”
“for the defense of the gospel”
(Jude 1:3; 2 Cor 10:5; Phil 1:16)
Friday October 31, 2008 A.D.
For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:11 NASB)