The Instigator
John_8-32
Pro (for)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
InquireTruth
Con (against)
Winning
35 Points

Assuming that the Bible is infallible then the earth is probably around 10,000 years old.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/7/2009 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,815 times Debate No: 9382
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (12)
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John_8-32

Pro

Why the Earth is probably around 10,000 years old.

Unfortunately our liberal secular media has refused to report any of the following findings or studies because they are not in keeping with the theory of evolution, which requires billions of years to be even remotely plausible. The following is some (but not all) of the data that supports a younger and a more biblically accurate earth.

First the scientific evidence:

Too much carbon 14 in deep geologic strata.
With their short 5,700-year half-life, no carbon 14 atoms should exist in any carbon older than 250,000 years. Yet it has proven impossible to find any natural source of carbon below Pleistocene (Ice Age) strata that does not contain significant amounts of carbon 14, even though such strata are supposed to be millions or billions of years old. Conventional carbon 14 laboratories have been aware of this anomaly since the early 1980s, have striven to eliminate it, and are unable to account for it. Lately the world's best such laboratory which has learned during two decades of low-C14 measurements how not to contaminate specimens externally, under contract to creationists, confirmed such observations for coal samples and even for a dozen diamonds, which cannot be contaminated in situ with recent carbon.1 These constitute very strong evidence that the earth is only thousands, not billions, of years old.

Galaxies wind themselves up too fast.
The stars of our own galaxy, the Milky Way, rotate about the galactic center with different speeds, the inner ones rotating faster than the outer ones. The observed rotation speeds are so fast that if our galaxy were more than a few hundred million years old, it would be a featureless disc of stars instead of its present spiral shape.2 Yet our galaxy is supposed to be at least 10 billion years old. Evolutionists call this "the winding-up dilemma," which they have known about for fifty years. They have devised many theories to try to explain it, each one failing after a brief period of popularity. The same "winding-up" dilemma also applies to other galaxies. For the last few decades the favored attempt to resolve the puzzle has been a complex theory called "density waves.2"The theory has conceptual problems, has to be arbitrarily and very finely tuned, and has been called into serious question by the Hubble Space Telescope's discovery of very detailed spiral structure in the central hub of the "Whirlpool" galaxy, M51.2(3)

Too much helium in minerals.
Uranium and thorium generate helium atoms as they decay to lead. A study published in the Journal of Geophysical Research showed that such helium produced in zircon crystals in deep, hot Precambrian granitic rock has not had time to escape.4 Though the rocks contain 1.5 billion years worth of nuclear decay products, newly-measured rates of helium loss from zircon show that the helium has been leaking for only 6,000 (� 2000) years. This is not only evidence for the youth of the earth, but also for episodes of greatly accelerated decay rates of long half-life nuclei within thousands of years ago, compressing radioisotope timescales enormously.

Biological material decays too fast.
Natural radioactivity, mutations, and decay degrade DNA and other biological material rapidly. Measurements of the mutation rate of mitochondrial DNA recently forced researchers to revise the age of "mitochondrial Eve" from a theorized 200,000 years down to possibly as low as 6,000 years.5 DNA experts insist that DNA cannot exist in natural environments longer than 10,000 years, yet intact strands of DNA appear to have been recovered from fossils allegedly much older: Neandertal bones, insects in amber, and even from dinosaur fossils.6 Bacteria allegedly 250 million years old apparently have been revived with no DNA damage.7 Soft tissue and blood cells from a dinosaur have astonished experts.8

For a true believer science can only go so far. In the end it is the Bible, the written Word of God, that has the final say. So i encourage any Christians that are unsure of where they stand scientifically to pay close attention to the following.

1) Moses described the creation of the earth and man as occurring within the same six-day span (Genesis 1). That these were ordinary days, of approximately twenty-four hours each (not figurative "days" representing millions of years), is demonstrated by the fact that the prophet viewed them as the same type of day as the Hebrew sabbath (Exodus 20:8-11).
2)The prophets affirmed that Jehovah's sovereignty has been evident to man "from the beginning," even from "the foundations of the earth" (Isaiah 40:21). How could this statement be remotely accurate if man did not arrive upon the planet until billions of years after earth's creation?
3)Paul argued that unbelief is inexcusable because evidences for the existence of the invisible God are "clearly seen" in the orderly universe, and have been "perceived" (a term that denotes rational intelligence—thus, obviously by man) "since the creation of the world" (Romans 1:20).
4)In Luke, chapter three, the divine historian lists the genealogy of Jesus all the way back to Adam, who was the "first man" (1 Corinthians 15:45). Now, from Christ back to Abraham there are some fifty-five generations.
Archaeology has demonstrated that these fifty-five generations spanned approximately two thousand years at the most (Kitchen and Mitchell 1962, 213). Furthermore, from Abraham on back to Adam, there are but twenty additional generations (a number of which were noted for exceptional longevity).
Even if one grants a few possible omissions in the genealogical narrative (as with some Old Testament records—cf. Ezra 7:3,4; 1 Chronicles 6:6-10), there is no reason to assume that the earlier portion of the Lord's family record is of a radically different structure than that which characterizes the later generations.
And so, Christ's genealogy spans only a few thousand years—not millions. If the genealogical accounts of the Savior's lineage do not demonstrate historical proximity, what is their purpose? The Bible is not silent concerning the relative ages of the earth and the human family.

Science will continue to change as it has throughout the ages and there will always be those who attempt to morph the scriptures to in light of some new "discovery" or breakthrough. We Christians must always remember that the Lord has given us his perfect and uncompromising Word and the wise would do well to stick to the words of the almighty creator and not to the slanted interpretations of non-believers.
References:
1:Baumgardner, J. R., et al., Measurable 14C in fossilized organic materials: confirming the young earth creation-flood model, Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Creationism, vol. II, Creation Science Fellowship (2003), Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 127–142. Archived at http://globalflood.org....
2:Scheffler, H. and Elsasser, H., Physics of the Galaxy and Interstellar Matter, Springer-Verlag (1987) Berlin, pp. 352–353, 401–413.
3:D. Zaritsky, H-W. Rix, and M. Rieke, Inner spiral structure of the galaxy M51, Nature 364:313–315 (July 22, 1993).
4:Gentry, R. V., G. L. Glish, and E. H. McBay, Differential helium retention in zircons: implications for nuclear waste containment, Geophysical Research Letters 9(10):1129–1130 (October 1982).
5:Gibbons A., Calibrating the mitochondrial clock, Science 279:28–29 (2 January 1998).
6:Cherfas, J., Ancient DNA: still busy after death, Science 253:1354–1356 (20 September 1991). Cano, R. J., H. N. Poinar, N. J. Pieniazek, A. Acra, and G. O. Poinar, Jr. Amplification and sequencing of DNA from a 120-135-million-year-old weevil...
7:Vreeland, R. H.,W. D. Rosenzweig, and D. W. Powers, Isolation of a 250 million-year-old halotolerant bacterium from a primary salt crystal, Nature 407:897–900 (19 October 2000).
8:Schweitzer, M., J. L. Wittmeyer, J. R. Horner,
InquireTruth

Con

===========
Introduction:
===========

I am so very glad that I can participate in this debate with you, Sam. Since I fully agree with the inspiration of the Holy Bible, I will allow it as a completely valid and sound source within this debate. In mostly all of my debates, I refer to my opponents indirectly, however, in this debate I will be speaking to you, Sam, directly.

===========
Scientific evidence:
===========

Most young-earth creationist acknowledge that science does not, in many areas, favor their claim. Instead they place special emphasis on documentary evidence (such as the Bible). Since you have taken the more formidable route (mostly) and decided to present scientific data to support your claim, you are presenting yourself as YEC of a different suit.

Now, the question is, are your scientific claims sound? The claims for which you are defending, stem from the work of D. Russell Humphreys. If you wish for the verity of the YEC claim to stand or fall by the merits of one man's claims, so be it. I will take the arguments in numerical order:

1. Too much carbon 14 in deep geologic strata.

Essentially the claim is that because things that are supposedly too old to contain any remnants of carbon-14 do, indeed, contain carbon-14, that the earth is actually much younger than claimed. The example of this claim is coal and even "a dozen diamonds."

Now I find it odd that you say a dozen diamonds. In order for your claim to be true, carbon-14 must be present ALL the time. If in mostly all the cases c14 is NOT found in diamonds, one must reasonably conclude that the cases in which c14 is present, that they are examples of aberrations, not normative behavior. C-14 must be present in ALL the samples in order for it lend at least a little credence to the YEC hypothesis.

Moreover, there is good reason to believe that coal, in many cases, will show traces of c14. New c14 is formed by background radiation. According to Kathleen Hunt, there are quite a few reasons why c14 would be present in coal. A few are as follows:
- Sulfur bacteria, which commonly grow in coal.
- Secondary carbonates from groundwater that form on fracture surfaces.
- Whewellite, a carbon-containing mineral, that often forms as coal weathers.
(http://www.talkorigins.org... )

Furthermore, in the cases that c14 was present, the measurements were around the maximum c14 could yield, that is still quite a distance from 10,000 years.(http://www.talkorigins.org... )

2. Galaxies wind themselves up too fast.

Well first of all, stars do not just whirl around a galactic center, this presupposes that stars are not drawn to the gravitational pull of other stars, which happens to be the case. Therefore Humphrey's model is already in error.(http://www.cesame-nm.org... ) Moreover, what is precisely the problem with the dense wave theory? One cannot simply say it is too complex. Until Humphrey's model is corrected to account for how stars ACTUALLY react, it avails to nothing but suspicion.

3. Biological Material Decays Too Fast.

There are some errant claims here. First, research does NOT suggest that Mitochondrial Eve is possibly as young as 6,500 years old. In fact, the lowest estimate is 120,000 old (http://www.evolutionpages.com... ).

Also, while traces of organic material were preserved, there was certainly no sign of cells and no DNA was retrieved. This point resides on a misrepresentation or false material (http://www.talkorigins.org...).

4. Too much helium in minerals

Many things wrong with this, and it all cannot be covered adequatly here. First, Humphrey's decided to study an area with a very complex thermal history and his results mean next to nothing unless they can be replicated – an not JUST in the same region. Humphreys selected a rock core sample from the Fenton Hill site, which, due to faulting and volcanism, has excess helium (which is expected). It is intelleticaually dishonest to study for something in an area that you know will yeild results in your favor (because the results will be contanimated due to the nature of the site). It is a proverbial stacking of the deck. (http://www.talkorigins.org... )

===========
The Bible:
===========

1. They were probably literal days within a larger literary metaphor. Is Genesis chapter 1 to be taken literally? How were there 24-hour solar days if the sun was not created until the forth day? Dictionary.com defines day as: "the interval of light between two successive nights; the time between sunrise and sunset." Moreover, given only 24-hours, it would have been impossible for Adam to name all the animals.

The REASON why Genesis 1 does not seem to represent a literal retelling is because the author used a common 7 day literary motif. Moreover, there is a stylistic parallel of the days mentioned, day 1 parallels day 4; day 2 parallels day 5; and day 3 parallels day 6 – leaving the last day to figuratively represent the Sabbath.

Furthermore, since even those living during the time of Genesis' authorship knew that the sun was a measurement for days (in terms of day/night and dusk/dawn), the fact that light was created before its source only serves to show that Genesis 1 was never meant to be taken literally. The original readers would have been aware of the common 7 day motif and also the creatively paralleled days, understanding that the purpose of the story was not to represent HOW God created but THAT God created.

2. Don't get me started on the mistranslation "Jehovah." The phrase is remotely accurate if we simply see it to as referring to creation of man, whatever point that may have been. Isaiah, who is fond of using poetic language, did so here. When the Bible says the earth has four corners (Revelation 7:1 or Acts 10:11), how can we take this to be even remotely accurate without understanding the earth to be flat and square? The answer is we must understand the authors use of literary devices. Hyper-literalism leads to egregious error.

3. It is common in the New Testament to say world when referring not too the world itself, but to those who inhabit it. For instance, Jesus died for the whole world. And we are called not to be LIKE the world. So Jesus died for rocks and grass and we're called NOT to be like rocks and grass...?

4. Ancient genealogies, unlike modern genealogies, practiced what is called telescoping. This is where they would leave out names or even entire lineages for the sake of brevity. Moreover, the purpose of ancient genealogies was either familial, legal, or religious. Genealogies for familial reasons were only to show hereditary inheritance. Legal genealogies were used to show hereditary inheritance of particular offices or even land. Lastly, religious genealogies were used to show whether or not one was part of the Levitical or Aronic priesthood. The three listed purposes were concerned more with ancestry than with the actual number of people. The form of the genealogies was largely determined by its function, whether familial, legal, or religious.

Furthermore, since you cannot confirm that Adam was present very shortly after the creation of the world, in light of the aforesaid, you cannot show how this genealogy supports anything other than the beginning of man, not the earth. Furthermore, compare Luke's genealogy with Matthew's and you will see that something different must be going on, as they almost entirely do not match up.

Conclusion:

Thank you, Sam. I await your second round with palpable great anticipation.
Debate Round No. 1
John_8-32

Pro

Thanks for accepting this debate, i hope as fellow Christians we will both be searching for truth and won't become rooted in a viewpoint simply to avoid being wrong. I will defend my science in numerical order.

Too much carbon in geologic strata.

Kathleen Hunt's hypothesis of bacteria producing carbon 14 in inconclusive. First of all it only applies to coal in warm damp conditions exposed to ambient air, and furthermore its not clear that these bacteria produce carbon 14 at all.
But if we say that carbon 14 is often produced in deep geologic strata then you admit the inaccuracy of carbon data as a whole! How can we rely on dating a such a substance if it is produced in deep strata? This negates a whole lot of evidence for your old earth.

Galaxies wind themselves up too fast

The main argument you seem to be using is the density wave theory which was invented to solve the "problem" of the universe appearing young. This model is famous for its ridiculous traffic jam analogy and is no more than the more popular theory at this time and will most likely change as soon as more data is available. The theory has only been applied to Saturn's rings but unfortunately 1 planet does not equal 1 galaxy.

Biological material decays too fast

Not sure if you are aware of how they actually date Mitochondrial Eve but the process includes a few assumptions that take evolution already into account (as do many secular dating methods). The age of ME is calculated with the evolutionist's "molecular clock" which assumes that there is a more or less fixed rate of mutations per year in any population. This "clock" is calibrated by assuming humans and baboons last shared a common ancestor x years ago and if the number of differences between baboon and human mtDNA is y, then the substitution rate per year is y/x. Not enough time to cover the entire process, but it all appears very circular.

Too much helium in minerals

On Humphrey's study of an area in favor of his claim is indeed questionable, because evolutionists would NEVER do that. But furthermore these results are not unique to just one area (Sarfati, 2005).

The Bible.

Your main argument for the non-historical reading of Genesis 1 is based in a poetic structure surrounding these scriptures. Firstly, the "correspondences" between the days of creation are not nearly as exact as you have supposed.
The sun, moon, and stars created on the fourth day as "lights in the firmament of the heavens" (Gen 1:14) are placed not in any space created on Day 1, but in the "firmament" that was created on day two. The Firmament is not mentioned at all on day one, but five times on day two and three times on day four. Also, the parallel between days 2 and 5 is not exact, because in some ways the preparation of a space for the fish and birds of day 5 does not come in Day 2 but on Day 3. It's not until Day 3 that God gathers and the waters together and calls them "seas" (Gen 1:10), and on Day 5 the fish are commanded to "fill the waters in the seas" (Gen 1:22) Again in verses 26 and 28 the fish are called "fish of the sea", giving repeated emphasis to the fact that the sphere the fish inhabit was specifically formed on Day 3. So, the fish formed on Day 5 seem to belong much more to the place prepared for them on Day 3 than to the widely dispersed waters below the firmament on Day 2.
Establishing a parallel between Day 2 and Day 5 faces further difficulties in that nothing is created on Day 5 to inhabit the "waters above the firmament", and the flying things created on this day (the Hebrew word would include flying insects as well as birds) not only fly in the sky created on Day 2, but also live and multiply on the "earth" or "dry land" created on Day 3. (Note God's command on Day 5: "Let birds multiply on the earth" (Gen 1:22) Lastly, the parallel between Days 3 and 6 is not precise, for nothing is created on Day 6 to fill the seas that were gathered together on Day 3. With all of these points of imprecise correspondence and overlapping between places and things created to fill them, the supposed literary "framework," while having an initial appearance of neatness, turns out to be less and less convincing upon closer reading of the text.

The rest of your answers on certain Biblical verses are very weak, and you honestly can't believe that in every instance that man is placed near the creation of the earth the author is speaking poetically. Your "rocks and grass" comparison is laughable, and citing one metaphor does not make two. Your genealogical approach is flawed, while in some areas groups of people are skipped you can't honestly believe that thousands of years are placed in these gaps.

Conclusion

Thanks again for your time and i can't wait for your next response.
InquireTruth

Con

Introduction:

This debate has been fun and I hope the following will serve as an accurate reminder as to why you are wrong : p

=========
1. Carbon 14
=========

You missed my point, Sam. Not only is there an answer congenial with experts as to why trace amounts of c14 is present in some coal deposits, but, even if there was not and your facts were accurate, it does not support your conclusion. C14 should be present in ALL the samples. If c14 is not present in all the samples, then it shows that those tested minerals are older than 50,000 years. Moreover, those that did have traces of c14 dated 50,000 years old, not 10,000. Indeed, traces of c14 were only found in samples where uranium deposits existed ("the 14C in coal is probably produced de novo by radioactive decay of the uranium-thorium isotope series that is naturally found in rocks and which is found in varying concentrations in different rocks, hence the variation in 14C content in different coals" http://www.talkorigins.org...).

The calibration and accuracy of c14 and radiometric dating are formed by using dendrochronology and ice core dating (the minimum age of the earth according to ice core dating is 160,000 years).

===================
2. Galaxies wind up too quickly
===================

Actually no, my main argument was that Humphrey used an egregiously flawed model and thus yielded an inaccurate conclusion. Until the model is updated to account for the aforesaid variables, it is useless for determining anything outside of fiction.

===================
3. Biological material decays too fast
===================

It seems you have strayed far from your contention. How exactly does the circular nature of the dating of Mitochondrial Eve support your contention that the earth is young? Since you have stated that science presupposes particular things in dating ME, it was your burden to show that such presuppositions are unwarranted. Moreover, my rebuts from R1 still stand.

===================
4. Too much helium in minerals
===================

I'm glad that you admit that Humphrey's area of study is questionable. Since his study has not been scientifically replicated and his data originated from a contaminated site, his results must be discarded. Since you have given me no other studies, I am an unable to check the verity of your tenuous assertion that "these results are not unique to just one area."

*THE BIBLE*

It is obvious that the particular Bible version cited is the KJV. Now herein lies a few problems. Namely that the KJV is not exactly a viable source of accuracy. Your contention against the poetic structure that I have advocated rests on the analysis of one word: firmament. It is better translated as expanse. The fact that the stars were created in the expanse of the sky is in no way deconstructive of the poetic claim. The emphasis is on the light and the fact remains that the existence of day 1 is contingent on the existence of day 4 – insofar as you cannot have light without sources of it.

Also, saying that the parallel of day 2 and 5 is not exact is disingenuous. Not only is it an admission that said parallel exists, but it is wrong in its analysis. The whole earth was covered in water on day 2 and God's specific words on day 5 are, "Let the water teem with living creatures..." The distinction of sea is made by the author after the direct quote of God. Moreover, the flying creatures being created on day 5 fits perfectly with the sky that was created on day 2. The more we discuss this, the more obvious the poetic structure becomes.

Furthermore, you are really grasping at straws trying to discount the parallel between 3 and 6. Not only are you presupposing that the parallel must be "exact" but your analysis fails to prove that it is not. The emphasis on day 3 is land and subsequently, the emphasis on day 6 is those that live on the land.

*Genealogies*

My point with the genealogies was that no accurate age can be derived from them. Moreover, since you cannot prove a definite starting point of them, you cannot use them to even gather an estimation.

==========
Conclusion
==========

Thank you for debating me on this subject, Sam. Though you find some of my Biblical examples to be "laughable," I encourage to review my points and consider whether your estimation of my points is accurate.
Debate Round No. 2
John_8-32

Pro

John_8-32 forfeited this round.
InquireTruth

Con

Thanks for the debate, Sam.

Extend my arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by wjmelements 7 years ago
wjmelements
Reason For Decision:
Conduct: CON (round 3 forfiet, also calling opponent's sources laughable)
Grammar: CON (Few minor mistakes, like capitalization)
Arguments: CON (Crushing, actually. This ultimately went down to CON's sources and an abundance of evidence. CON's case was poorly refuted by PRO)
Sources: CON (PRO had only one external link, while CON had many)
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
Con wins the debate easily. Well done.

At he risk of piling on, additional evidence for an old earth could have been introduced by Con. For example, there are about twenty isotopes used for dating. Some, like Argon/Argon dating do not require knowing how much of an isotope was in the sample originally. All the measures show an old earth. I mention this because, YEC-believers characteristically ignore all evidence for which they have failed to devise a counter.
Posted by InquireTruth 7 years ago
InquireTruth
I agree with you.
Posted by TheSkeptic 7 years ago
TheSkeptic
I'm fine with using other people's argument (I mean hell, most of our beliefs are formed from the contributions of others) but to plagiarize another article practically verbatim without reference is bad conduct.
Posted by InquireTruth 7 years ago
InquireTruth
To clear any misunderstanding, Sam and I had talked about this debate before hand and I asked him to furnish the best arguments available. It was assumed, knowing that the best arguments were probably not HIS arguments, that he would be taking them from someone else.
Posted by Kleptin 7 years ago
Kleptin
All except one of PRO's "arguments" are arguments I categorize as the "Rate Fallacy".

YECs assume that the rates of things stay the same, and that following from that, they incorrectly conclude the age of the universe.

There's a reason why scientists who collect all this data don't publish conclusions that the universe is 10,000 years old:

1. They know how to read beyond a 4th grade level.
2. They at least know how to do simple mathematical calculations.
3. They aren't brainless sheep who fail to contribute novel ideas to society.

If you're a YEC, there's a pretty good chance that you won't really contribute anything novel to mankind. I suggest that you quit pretending to be an academic and just do your day job well, so that you can at least be a proper cog in the machine that is society, and channel your faith into spreading love instead of lies.
Posted by Alex 7 years ago
Alex
C'mon sam what happened
Posted by TheSkeptic 7 years ago
TheSkeptic
C: Definitely goes to CON due to plagiarism on PRO's part.
S&G: Tied.
A: There isn't a way to summarize why I voted for CON, it's simply a case of scientific understanding. As one looks into each of the arguments PRO used, a simple online research will reveal the points are lacking in scientific understanding or born out of misunderstandings.
S: CON gave much more reliable sources and STUCK to them. AiG uses sources but how they implement the information from the sources is dishonest.
Posted by TheSkeptic 7 years ago
TheSkeptic
Ah...
Posted by Clockwork 7 years ago
Clockwork
http://www.answersingenesis.org...

Busted. Boo for plagiarism.
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