Noah’s Flood, Examining Some Questions, Part I

Recently, I’ve been reading the book “A Biblical Case for an Old Earth” by David Snoke. In it, he challenges the traditional notions of young earth creationism from both a Biblical and scientific viewpoint. When I’m finished, I’ll give you a full report on it, but for now, I wanted to focus on what he said about Noah’s flood.

Snoke claims that to believe Noah’s Flood covered the whole earth, one has to accept that 15 separate miracles took place, and that God not only flooded the earth, but erased the evidence. He claims the flood was local AND that it killed all of humanity BUT did not cover the globe -not without miracles at least.

Now, it is true that the Biblical account of Noah’s flood contains some miracles. Of course it does, we’re talking God here. When the children of Israel were wandering around the desert, God performed all sorts of miracles, including miracles of preservation: Manna appeared on the ground every morning, their clothes didn’t wear out, water came out of rocks, and more. To say that God had Noah build an ark, and then flooded the earth without also preserving and protecting Noah, would be to not pay attention to God, and not read the story very closely. There ARE miracles in it.

But are these miracles bordering on the unreasonable? Snoke thinks so, and so believes in a local flood (and there is abundant evidence of a gigantic flood in that part of the world), and believes that’s how it should be interpreted.

One thing I’ve learned in all these evolution/creation/intelligent design arguments is that what seems like a conclusive argument, can be shot down by new evidence, and what seems logical today, is a silly notion a decade from now. In other words, we’re always learning and finding new information and evidence. It’s like the weather in Missouri, if you don’t like what you’ve got right now, just hang around, it’ll change. So I am not writing this post in an effort to silence all disagreement for all time. I’m writing this to discuss Noah’s flood, with the understanding that this is an open-ended conversation.

So this post is mostly just me off the top of my head, with a couple of books nearby. And for the record, I have enjoyed David Snoke’s book. He makes some very good points, and at other times, I disagree with him, such as with Noah’s flood. Still, I hope you don’t think I’m attacking him. I’m simply disagreeing with him on this. Here’s the rundown:

THE MOVIE “EVAN ALMIGHTY” WAS RIGHT ABOUT SOMETHING
First, Snoke says, (remember he’s skeptical of a world-wide flood) for a global flood to be true, there must have been a miracle that transported millions of animals to the Ark from Australia, the Americas, Antarctica, and the islands.

Well, most creationists do believe the continents were different, and more connected at the time of the flood, but regardless, I think Snoke is probably right that it would have taken a miracle to bring all the animals to the ark. The thing is, however, the Bible says this miracle happened. Despite what is commonly assumed, the Bible never said Noah gathered the animals, it says God brought them to Noah. Pairs of clean and unclean animals, of birds and of all creatures that move along the ground, male and female, came to Noah and entered the ark, as God had commanded Noah. -Genesis 7:8-9

Remember the movie, “Evan Almighty?” You don’t? You see there was this guy, and he mysteriously got this material to build an ark, and then God showed up, only he looked like Morgan Freeman and…. alright nevermind.

So in the movie (take my word for it), the animals just showed up and followed Evan everywhere. When he got the ark finished, they were surrounding it, and they walked in on their own. Well, that’s pretty much what the Bible describes -not the part about Morgan Freeman, but the part about the animals showing up and walking in on their own. THAT miracle did indeed happen according to the story. So if you believe God flooded the earth, well, you SHOULD believe that God miraculously transported animals to the ark. It says He did.

FITTING ALL THOSE ANIMALS IN A TEENY-TINY ARK
The second miracle evidently comes from a disagreement over how many animals were actually in the ark. Snoke writes that to believe in a global flood, you must believe that the Ark could hold millions of animal species plus the food and fresh water they would need for 150 days at sea.

I have another book on my desk called “Noah’s Ark: A Feasibility Study” by John Woodmorappe who says we are really just talking about 16,000 genus, which means a family of related species. Before you ask, yes Woodmorappe included extinct animals at full-size proportions, including dinosaurs. But really, between me and you, if you’re going to take a dinosaur, take a little one. They were ALL very, very small when born, while many of them were very, very NOT small when grown. Go with young ones. You know, if you ever need to transport dinosaurs….

I digress.

So…. The Bible says the animals came on to the ark after their “kind.” According to Woodmorappe, a study of this term, using some of the animal lists in Leviticus for instance, is often broader than what we term as species. “Kinds” would usually refer to a family of species, which later branched into various species (speciation) as they reproduced and traits were isolated here and there. But the point seems to be that the genetic potential for all of those species, were in the two animals who entered the ark.

That’s not really arguing over a miracle, that’s arguing over genetics and reproduction. If Woodmorappe is right (and he actually came up with 2000 animals, but purposefully increased it to 16,000 by adopting the official “genus,” just to make it harder) then the ark had plenty of room, without any need of a miracle.

HOW MANY REFRIGERATORS WERE ON THE ARK?
Snoke claims that to believe in a world-wide Noah’s flood, you have to also believe in some sort of miraculous way to feed carnivorous animals on the ark. Either you needed more than two of all the other animals, or else Noah and his family would have had to somehow refrigerate enough meat for a year to feed them.

Evidently Snoke believes a localized flood would allow Noah to leave behind the carnivorous animals. Of course the story itself says Noah took pairs of “every kind” and “all creatures that move along the ground.” So even if the flood was localized, and the Bible was just talking about the land around Noah, that would undoubtedly still include some carnivorous animals since the same passage says “every kind” and “all creatures,” not just some of them. In other words, localized flood or global flood, you have the same problem explaining how the carnivorous animals were fed.

It would be easy to laugh it off (many people do) and again point out how this would require a miracle! And again, yeah? So? A miracle of preservation no doubt, but it also happens to be the same sort of miracle God claims to be able to do. In speaking about the future reign of Christ, the Bible says this:

The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The infant will play near the hole of the cobra, and the young child put his hand into the viper’s nest. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.
-Isaiah 11:7-9

To say nothing of the whole “manna incident” or “quail singularity” (my terms, I just made them up, -like them?) when God fed the Israelites in the desert.

Any miracle that would allow Noah to feed the animals, even the carnivorous ones, would be consistent with many other miracles in the Bible. So if the story is true, this miracle is in the no-big-deal-for-God category because He has done this sort of miracle more than once.

Having said this, Woodmorappe makes a great case for two things: One that the ancients knew how to salt, smoke, pickle and otherwise preserve meat to eat. Honey is used to preserve meat for long periods of time, as the Romans used to do it. AND back in more ancient times, sailors on long voyages used Giant tortoises for meat because you don’t have to feed Giant tortoises (they can go without food, sometimes for a year), and probably because they aren’t so hard to catch when you’re hungry.

There were many other options, including fish… but to say God didn’t help in this area, would probably be unreasonable since in the Bible, God usually DID help with this sort of thing. Even Jesus fed 5000 men, plus women and children with 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish.

Whew! There’s a lot more to go! My next post I’ll tackle whether or not a miracle was needed to feed all the animals, clean out the dung, ventilate the ark, and more…

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21 thoughts on “Noah’s Flood, Examining Some Questions, Part I

  1. Hello CrazyPastor,

    Really don’t want to rain on your parade here, but the question of Noah’s flood has been settled for many many years. It was in the 1600’s that good Christian Naturalists (scientists of the day) started finding evidence in the earth’s crust that argued against a universal flood. Since that time ALL the geological evidence has disproven this Biblical myth.

    In the Catholic Encyclopedia of 1908 the Church declared that the flock no longer was required to believe in a literal universal flood.

    Also within the last hundred years or so the archaeological evidence from the whole world has failed to show ANY evidence of a world-wide flood. Most scholars nowadays attribute the Biblical flood to plagiarism from the story of Gilgamesh of Babylonian fame which occurred maybe a thousand years before the Hebrew rabbi’s and scholars wrote the Pentateuch around 700-500 BC.

    The Levant and Babylonian area is probably the most studied real estate on earth and we know an amazing amount of the history of the area for the past 4000 years or better.

    Note also that the science behind all the Biblical stories is showing an amazingly different story than what most people think. Not trying to bash Christianity here, it’s just the result of my interest and searching.

    Peace,
    twom

  2. Do you really think so? “ALL the geological evidence has disproven this Biblical myth?”

    Fair enough. What would be just one piece of evidence?

    Of course you should know that there are a great many geologists who disagree with you concerning a lack of evidence for a world-wide flood. They would say quite the opposite! -including some rather famous geologists. (Or I probably should say infamous) It would take quite a flood after all, to lay down a chalk layer that covers half the globe wouldn’t it?

  3. Hi Brian/CrazyPastor, thanks for your reply, and I hope you are well.

    As I’m sure you are aware, there is a website dedicated to answering the many
    questions brought up by the creationists sects as they relate to science and our
    earths history. It was setup and is run as a site where actual scientists could answer these creationist queries. It is called “talkorigins.org” It can not only answer most every question one may have in these matters, but it gives links to further, deeper inquiry.

    Below is just a very short section of a discussion about geological evidence that
    there was no universal flood…the link gives the whole article and links to much
    much more.

    From: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-noahs-ark.html
    How was the fossil record sorted in an order convenient for evolution? Ecological zonation, hydrodynamic sorting, and differential escape fail to explain:

    • the extremely good sorting observed. Why didn’t at least one dinosaur make it to the high ground with the elephants?

    • the relative positions of plants and other non-motile life. (Yun, 1989, describes beautifully preserved algae from Late Precambrian sediments. Why don’t any modern-looking plants appear that low in the geological column?)

    • why some groups of organisms, such as mollusks, are found in many geologic strata.

    • why organisms (such as brachiopods) which are very similar hydrodynamically (all nearly the same size, shape, and weight) are still perfectly sorted.

    • why extinct animals which lived in the same niches as present animals didn’t survive as well. Why did no pterodons make it to high ground?

    • how coral reefs hundreds of feet thick and miles long were preserved intact with other fossils below them.

    • why small organisms dominate the lower strata, whereas fluid mechanics says they would sink slower and thus end up in upper strata.

    • why artifacts such as footprints and burrows are also sorted.

    • why no human artifacts are found except in the very uppermost strata. If, at the time of the Flood, the earth was overpopulated by people with technology for shipbuilding, why were none of their tools or buildings mixed with trilobite or dinosaur fossils?

    • why different parts of the same organisms are sorted together. Pollen and spores are found in association with the trunks, leaves, branches, and roots produced by the same plant.

    • why ecological information is consistent within but not between layers. Fossil pollen is one of the more important indicators of different levels of strata. Each plant has different and distinct pollen, and, by telling which plants produced the fossil pollen, it is easy to see what the climate was like in different strata. Was the pollen hydraulically sorted by the flood water so that the climatic evidence is different for each layer?

    One of the best researched articles about Noah’s flood is made by a gentleman who is of the faith, but cannot abide by the willful overlooking of real honest evidence. A link to his article is provided Here: http://www.bringyou.to/apologetics/p82.htm Note that it is a rather long article, but extremely well researched and sourced. It is by Davis A. Young, an evangelical Christian geologist from Calvin College, adapted from his book The Biblical Flood: A Case Study of the Church’s Response to Extrabiblical Evidence (Eerdmans, 1995)

    Another thing I might mention is that Egypt was literate (as was most other societies in the area) at the supposed time of the flood and was right next door to the flood area, and there is no written or archaeological or geological evidence of any humongous flood there at any time…just the common yearly flooding of the Nile.

    One more thing I thought of is that the time (from Christian sources) of this supposed flood is about 2400-2200 BC, and the time of the Tower of Babel is sometime after this point, maybe 2000 BC or thereabouts. These times fit into a period on earth where human distribution around the world is very well attested too. In other words we have overwhelming, well researched evidence that humans were spread around everywhere on earth…except Antarctica perhaps. I’ll bet you they were talking to each other, not grunting, but talking…and I’ll bet you they were talking different languages.

    These thousands and thousands of old evidentiary sites show NO record (archaeological or geological) of disruption and destruction of their societies in the aforementioned timeline, they DO show signs of continuous uninterrupted societies. Yes, many of the old societies have legends of a big flood, but at different times and with different back-stories…some societies have no flood legends at all…such as much of Africa–where humans were born.

    I really have a good time researching the old Biblical stories; they are so rich in history, and in some cases mythological story-making and Genesis myths.

    Peace to you,
    twom

  4. Hi CrazyPastor, sorry I forgot to include this.

    How could a flood have deposited chalk? Chalk is largely made up of the bodies of plankton 700 to 1000 angstroms in diameter. Objects this small settle at a rate of .0000154 mm/sec. In a year of the Flood, they could have settled about half a meter…19.3in. The Cliffs of Dover attest to an extremely looong time of deposition, not just a year.

    Oh yeah, didn’t a Dove bring back a live olive tree branch to Noah? Sure sign that not all of the earth was covered with water.

  5. They settle at a rate of .000154 mm/sec? I’ll accept that. Of course,I see you put your faith in uniformitarianism, or the idea that the rate we see at this moment, is the rate it’s always been.

    Of course, at the present rate you quoted, it would be impossible to create the chalk layer in the first place, since the layer is pure, and surely over millions of years, other organisms would have ALSO died and settled with the organisms that form white chalk. The evidence then, seems to certainly indicate that something was once amiss with the “rate.”

    Here’s a quote from another website:

    “For the chalk formations to have reached the thickness they are today in a few thousand years, the production of microorganisms would have had to greatly increase sometime in the past. In fact, under the right conditions, rapid production and accumulation of these microorganisms on the ocean floor is possible. These conditions include turbulent waters, high winds, decaying fish, and increased temperature and nutrients from volcanic waters and other sources. With catastrophic volcanic activity warming the oceans and releasing large amounts of CO2, and with the torrential rains and the churning and mixing of fresh and salt waters, the Flood of Noah’s day produced the right conditions for a “blooming” production of microorganisms and the chalk’s rapid accumulation. The three major sections of the White Cliffs of Dover give evidence of three major “blooms” in chalk formation, which would have taken place during the year-long Flood.”

    So you see, it’s not that there isn’t evidence for a flood. It’s actually just a question over how the evidence is interpreted.

    Yes the dove did bring back an olive branch. How would that be a “sure sign” the flood wasn’t world-wide? It had been over 4 months since the water started to recede and Olive shoots sprout very rapidly, and don’t even need seeds. They sprout from pieces of branches, which would have floated with a lot of other debris very easily. It’s one of the most likely plants to have sprouted first.

  6. Hello again CrazyPastor,

    OK, my field is not chalk deposition so I’ll temporarily pass on defending chalk. :-), except to ask if the AiG defender of chalk deposition has done actual model studies of this hypothesis and has repeatable and defendable data for peer review?

    Regarding olive trees I do wonder how long any plant could live with constant exposure to sea-water or whatever universal flood water might be composed of.

    And consider all the plant species who would not survive the total inundation, especially the grasses all over the world. Picture a world of mud and carnivores and herbivores roaming the earth with nothing to eat but each other. Trip to Australia must have been really hard times for them.

    You write:
    “So you see, it’s not that there isn’t evidence for a flood. It’s actually just a question over how the evidence is interpreted.”

    I’ll have to take exception to this statement. You see the only people who are interpreting the evidence in this (wrong by mainline science understanding) manner is the apologists for a certain fundamentalist interpretation of the Bible such as the AiG and ICR organizations.

    These groups will hire scientists who will sign away their scientific principals and ethics to bend to a certain strain of Christianity. They then make-up professional sounding alternate hypothesis to confound the people they are trying to reach. They do NO actual science. I have had occasion to meet a couple of these people at seminars and was not impressed by their level of knowledge or expertise.

    At least one of the organizations (ICR I believe) tried to set up a diploma-mill in Texas so they could manufacture their own experts. Texas regulators turned them down which kind of surprised me as Texas is a hot-bed of Biblical creationists.

    I’m wondering what your take is on the Egyptian lack of connection. I might add to this that the other major civilizations extent at the supposed time of the flood do not show any disruption of their cities/towns/villages/societies/etc. We have Egypt, 3100 BC+- till the Romans conquered them, the Indus Valley 3100+- BC to about 1300, China from +3000 (5000?) BC on, and the Minoans who flourished from about 5000 BC till about 1470 BC+- when they were wiped out by the Thera volcano eruption.

    It seems to me that a year-long monumental flood among those heavily populated and literate peoples would result in tremendous amounts of physical data to back up the flood story/myth. There are some parts of China that do have a flood myth, but they wrote about it, so it wasn’t the Noah story. A side note: Christian proselytizers are reported to have invaded China as early as the 1200’s AD. The Indus valley people had many flood stories, but they lived for the most part along a, now dry, large river and they were only local floods…although reportedly large.

    I have mostly just skimmed a few of the hundreds of reasons to not believe this particular Biblical story. As the years roll along I’m sure many-many more will surface as the science gets better. Of course we know that many of the stories are true, but we also know that most of the Genesis stories are just that…stories, or maybe Genesis myths would be a better description.

    Peace
    twom

  7. A great many plants and fish did not survive the flood, and we have the fossils of many extinct species as a result. The evidence, again, is not in dispute by and large, but the interpretation of it certainly is. Simply because some geologists who you might disagree with are the minority, does not change the fact that it really is the interpretation that is different -regardless of who they work for, or whether they are independent of the organizations you mentioned.

    Mainline science has accepted the evolutionary model, and the model concerning the age of the earth and fit the evidence in accordingly. It’s no surprise they interpret the geologic evidence differently, but when one starts with different assumptions, such as that of a younger earth or a great flood, then it has been demonstrated -even through computer modeling (after all the famous Terra program used by geologists worldwide was developed by reknown Creationist John Baumgardner), that the geological and feasibility questions surrounding the flood are indeed reasonable.

  8. To answer your question, it always comes down to exactly how a date was arrived at, what method was used. Opinions do change with the next shovel of dirt revealing something new. Generally, Carbon-14 dating, dating based on pottery styles, dating based on level in the earth of the artifacts, etc… are used and debated for all the normal reasons. That doesn’t make them wrong necessarily, but it IS an inexact science.

    By the same token, there’s some inexact science in dating the flood from the Bible in my opinion. Most of the civilizations are said to have been formed after a flood by Creationists. But since they arrive at a date of the flood by interpreting the genealogies in the Bible, there is the possibility of gaps or differences of opinion on the exact year. Giving or taking several centuries, it’s probably a wash. Nevertheless, most ancient civilizations have a flood story and other ancient stories that mirror the Bible. -something that would be expected if the Bible story is true.

  9. Good day to you CrazyPastor,

    You write:
    “…it always comes down to exactly how a date was arrived at, what method was used.”

    With over 40 methods of dating being available today I don’t really doubt archaeologists dating anymore. They’ve had 60+ years to work out the kinks in C-14 dating. Nowadays the methodology is to have multiple methods of dating on items and artifacts.

    You write:
    “Nevertheless, most ancient civilizations have a flood story and other ancient stories that mirror the Bible. -something that would be expected if the Bible story is true.”

    Interestingly the majority of Biblical scholars date the writing of the Pentateuch to around the time of the Hebrews exile in Babylon or slightly later. Considered to be a pious forgery (for several different reasons) used to bring the tribes together again after the violent breakup and exile to Babylon and thus not written by Moses. The ancient civilizations had already written, or lived, their histories. Also it is well known that the Hebrews continued to worship many gods until around the end of the exile.

    Noah’s flood legend is widely believed to be a knock-off of the much older Babylonian tale of the Epic of Gilgamesh. With some 20 points of similarity compared to just a few from the other myths it is the logical candidate.

    “In both the Genesis and Gilgamesh stories:

    The Genesis story describes how mankind had become obnoxious to God; they were hopelessly sinful and wicked. In the Babylonian story, they were too numerous and noisy.

    The Gods (or God) decided to send a worldwide flood. This would drown men, women, children, babies and infants, as well as eliminate all of the land animals and birds.

    The Gods (or God) knew of one righteous man, Ut-Napishtim or Noah.

    The Gods (or God) ordered the hero to build a multi-story wooden ark (called a chest or box in the original Hebrew).

    The ark would be sealed with pitch.

    The ark would have with many internal compartments

    It would have a single door

    It would have at least one window.

    The ark was built and loaded with the hero, a few other humans, and samples from all species of other land animals.

    A great rain covered the land with water.

    The mountains were initially covered with water.

    The ark landed on a mountain in the Middle East.

    The hero sent out birds at regular intervals to find if any dry land was in the vicinity.

    The first two birds returned to the ark. The third bird apparently found dry land because it did not return.

    The hero and his family left the ark, ritually killed an animal and offered it as a sacrifice.

    God (or the Gods in the Epic of Gilgamesh) smelled the roasted meat of the sacrifice.

    The hero was blessed.

    The Babylonian gods seemed genuinely sorry for the genocide that they had created. The God of Noah appears to have regretted his actions as well, because he promised never to do it again.”

    Another thought I’ve had about the ark is that there were no tools of the type that would be needed to build a 400-450 foot long wooden boat, also as others have noted, a wooden boat that huge is not viable or seaworthy…wood is not strong enough.

    You have to give those old goat-herders credit though, they were a pretty smart bunch of myth-makers.

  10. 40 methods… hmmm….isn’t that interesting? Can you name ten? And which one was used in dating the Egyptian civilization to the date you spoke about?

  11. And how do the scholars who claim the Pentateuch was written centuries later come to that conclusion? Or how do you for instance, come to the conclusion that there would be no tools available to build an ark? Especially considering the entire civilization at that time was destroyed, have you been to the bottom of the Black Sea and come up empty in those underwater ruins while looking for tools? I would refer you to Woodmorappe’s feasibility study, (one of several resources) on the viability of the ark and other questions. http://www.amazon.com/Noahs-Ark-Feasibility-John-Woodmorappe/dp/0932766412

  12. Hey, just thought I’d jump in here with some information yet-unmentioned. Hope you don’t mind. 🙂

    First of all, if you live anywhere with regular floods, you’ll know that trees like to clump together and float on top of the water. They wouldn’t all be crushed in Noah’s flood. The water didn’t simply smash everything to bits – it rose from below, as well. This would promote the floating of trees. 😉 Sure, some would become extinct, and some did, but for the most part, it wouldn’t be too improbable for so many species of trees to survive a global flood. Especially since the amount of fossil fuels indicates there must have been a vastly lager quantity of vegetation in existence prior to the Flood than exists today.

    Second, just because it is “widely believed” that Noah’s story was a knock-off does not mean that it is. It could just as easily be that the other stories are knock-offs of Noah’s. But of course, when one comes at evidence with the assumption, the interpretation will be entirely different. In this case, if something disagrees with the Bible, we immediately assume that the Bible must be wrong. But why not the source that disagrees? Why do we trust certain sources over others?

    Third, when you claim that Noah did not have the right tools to build the Ark, you assume that the people before us (Pre-Flood) were less intelligent. This is purely an assumption based on evolutionary bias. Most biblical scholars and creation scientists believe that humans before us were, in fact, more intelligent. After all, why would God make Adam and Eve with caveman-like intelligence? Naturally, if creation was “very good,” as God declared, then Adam and Eve must have been physically perfect, and therefore smarter than us. That makes us the primitive ones. (By the way, Neanderthal brain cavities are twenty percent larger than those of present humans. I’m gonna take a shot in the dark and say that they were like that for a reason. 😉 )

    Now, as for Egypt, their dates were built on Manetho’s history and the Sothic theory.
    Ptolomy II commissioned Manetho, a priest, to put together a history of Egypt. But Manetho’s writings are unsuitable for establishing a reliable Egyptain chronology because Manetho’s history was never intended to be a chronological account of Egyptian history. Like most people of the time, Manetho measured time in regnal years (“in the third year of King So-and-So”). Eusebius, fourth-century historian who quoted Manetho extensively, noticed that Manetho’s regnal years were not to be added up consecutively. This is because several Egyptian kings ruled simultaneously; the history was not of a succession of kings occupying the throne one after the other. Rather, there were several kings, each reigning in his own region as the others reigned in theirs.
    Manetho’s “garbled abridgement” is also inconsistent with contemporary Egyptian sources. Professor J.H. Breasted, who wrote History of Egypt, found Manetho’s history “a late, careless and uncritical compilation, which can be proven wrong from the contemporary monuments in the vast majority of cases, where such documents have survived.” Manetho’s interpretation of each variation in spelling as a different king creates numerous nonexistent generations. So, yeah, Manetho’s “history” contradicts actual Egyptian records from the time of the pharaohs. Therefore, historians should not consider Manetho’s history authoritative. And yet they do. Most history dates from other countries are based on Manetho’s history, which really isn’t reliable.
    The Sothic cycle was created by Eduard Meyer in 1904 to give Egypt a unified calendar that aligns Egyptian regnal years with modern historians’ B.C. dates. Meyer had to depend on later non-Egyptian writers to establish a starting point for his calculations, and those sources are contradictory. One stated that the Great Sothic Year occurred in A.D. 140, while the other believed that it occurred in 26 B.C. The key here is that it was all based on the rising of Sothis. However, history gives no hint that the Egyptians regularly dated important events from the rising of Sothis. Furthermore, whenever Egyptian writings mention the rising of Sothis in connection with a regnal year, the pharaoh is unnamed, or the reference is ambiguous. For these reasons, many Egyptologists have consistently rejected Sothic-cycle-based chronology.
    So, all together, we’ve got two problems with the Sothic cycle.
    1. The two starting points are contradictory.
    2. It has little historical support.

    But you’ll have to excuse me; I’m not terribly familiar with Egyptology. I only recently researched Manetho’s compilation, I know only the basics of the Sothic cycle, and I doubt that I could explain either very well at the moment. You’ll just have to make do with the above. 🙂

    Now, carbon dating, on the other hand, I have a decent grasp on. Sixty years does not a perfect system make. 😉 If you aren’t completely aware of how the Carbon-14 dating process works, here is a “brief” explanation: There are three naturally-occurring carbon isotopes. Carbon-12, Carbon-13, and Carbon-14. Carbon-12 is stable while Carbon-14 is radioactive, which means that it decays. But if C-14 is constantly decaying, will the earth eventually run out of C-14? No, it is constantly being added to the atmosphere. Cosmic rays from outer space, which contain high levels of energy, bombard the earth’s upper atmosphere. These rays collide with atoms in the atmosphere and can cause them to come apart, which ultimately produces C-14. Once produced, the Carbon-14 combines with oxygen in the atmosphere (C-12 acts like C-14 and also combines with oxygen) to form carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide gets incorporated into plants (food), so all living things should have the same ratio of C-14 and C-12 in them as the air we breathe.
    Once a living thing dies, the dating process begins. As long as an organism is alive, it will continue to take in C-14, but when it dies, it will stop (no more eating). Since C-14 is radioactive, it will decay, but C-12, a stable isotope, will remain the same. So the dating process involves measuring the amount of C-14 that remains after some has been lost (decayed).

    A critical assumption in this dating process is that the ratio of Carbon-14 to Carbon-12 in the atmosphere has always been the same as it is today (1 to 1 trillion). If the production rate of Carbon-14 in the atmosphere is not equal to the removal rate, this ratio will change. Dr. Willard Libby, the founder of the Carbon-14 dating method, noted in his original work that the atmosphere did not appear to be in equilibrium –

    ”The Specific Production Rate (SPR) of C-14 is known to be 18.8 atoms per gram of total carbon per minute. The Specific Decay Rate (SDR) is known to be only 16.1 disintegrations per gram per minute.”

    So it has been established that the carbon-14 production/removal rate is not in equilibrium, which means that the starting amount of carbon-14 in an organism a thousand years ago would be different than that of any organism today. And that’s just 1,000 years. What about things dated in the millions range? None of them can be accurately measured.
    Now, the use of Carbon-14 dating is often misunderstood. C-14 is mostly used to date once living things (organic material). It cannot be used directly to date rocks or pottery; however, it can potentially be used to put time constraints on some inorganic material such as diamonds (diamonds could contain Carbon-14). Because of the rapid rate of decay of Carbon-14, it can only give dates in the thousands-of-year range — not millions. After about 80,000 years, there is no longer enough detectable C-14 to accurately date the material. – This is assuming, of course, that it even works.

    Now, interestingly, the Flood plays a large part in the carbon dating process. Recall that there were very likely more plants before the Flood than there are today. This would further dilute the amount of C-14 and cause the C-14/C-12 ratio to be much smaller than today. Therefore, any age estimates using C-14 on organic material that dates from prior to the Flood will give much older dates than the true ages. Pre-Flood organic materials would be dated at perhaps ten times the true age.

    Anyway, I’ve rambled long enough. I hope this is helpful.

  13. Good evening CrazyPastor, I hope you are well.

    You write”

    Brian :
    40 methods… hmmm….isn’t that interesting? Can you name ten? And which one was used in dating the Egyptian civilization to the date you spoke about?

    The following is the opening paragraphs from a paper by Roger C. Wiens / RCWiens@MSN.Com It can be found here: http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/Wiens.html#page%2019

    “Radiometric dating–the process of determining the age of rocks from the decay of their radioactive elements–has been in widespread use for over half a century. There are over forty such techniques, each using a different radioactive element or a different way of measuring them. It has become increasingly clear that these radiometric dating techniques agree with each other and as a whole, present a coherent picture in which the Earth was created a very long time ago. Further evidence comes from the complete agreement between radiometric dates and other dating methods such as counting tree rings or glacier ice core layers. Many Christians have been led to distrust radiometric dating and are completely unaware of the great number of laboratory measurements that have shown these methods to be consistent. Many are also unaware that *Bible-believing Christians* are among those actively involved in radiometric dating.”

    “This paper describes in relatively simple terms how a number of the dating techniques work, how accurately the half-lives of the radioactive elements and the rock dates themselves are known, and how dates are checked with one another. In the process the paper refutes a number of misconceptions prevalent among Christians today. This paper is available on the web via the American Scientific Affiliation and related sites to promote greater understanding and wisdom on this issue, particularly within the Christian community.”

    A list of a few dating methods currently used by scientists
    Superposition
    Stratigraphy
    Dendrochronology
    Radiocarbon C14
    Radiometric Dating Methods
    Obsidian Hydration Dating
    Paleomagnetic/Archaeomagnetic
    Luminescence Dating Methods
    Amino Acid Racemization
    Fission-track Dating
    Ice Cores
    Varves
    Pollens
    Corals
    Cation Ratio
    Fluorine Dating
    Patination
    Oxidizable Carbon Ratio
    Electron Spin Resonance
    Cosmic-ray Exposure Dating

    Some of the methods listed above have 2 to 5 further methods imbedded. They can all be checked out on the web of course.

    As for which one was used on the Egyptian civilization…I imagine most of them were at one time or another. I don’t believe that any of the Egyptian dates are in controversy.

  14. Hello again CrazyPastor, I hope you have a good week.

    You write:
    “And how do the scholars who claim the Pentateuch was written centuries later come to that conclusion?”

    “…there is hardly a biblical scholar in the world actively working on the [authorship] problem who would claim that the Five Books of Moses were written by Moses.” R.E. Friedman.

    “…it has long been recognized that [Moses] cannot have been the author, and that the Pentateuch is in fact anonymous.” D.J.A. Clines.

    “Theologians were prompted to develop the Documentary Hypothesis as a result of observing the presence of doublets in the Pentateuch. These are pairs of stories which occur in two separate locations in the text. The doublets generally do not agree fully; there are usually minor differences between the stories. R.E. Friedman, in his 1997 book “Who Wrote the Bible?” lists a number of them:
    •Two creation stories in Genesis.
    •Two descriptions of the Abrahamic covenant.
    •Two stories of the naming of Isaac.
    •Two instances where Abraham deceived a king by introducing his wife Sarah as his sister.
    •Two stories of Jacob traveling to Mesopotamia
    •Two stories of a revelation at Beth-el to Jacob.
    •Two accounts of God changing Jacob’s name to Israel
    •Two instances where Moses extracted water from two different rocks at two different locations called Meribah.

    It is difficult to account for so many doublets — most containing slight discrepancies — if all five books were written over a short interval of time by Moses or by any other single individual.

    Genesis 7:15: In the story of the Flood, these verses have Noah collecting two of each species of animals — one male and one female . Genesis 7:2-3 specifies 7 pairs of clean animals and birds and 1 pair of unclean animals.

    •Genesis 7:11 describes water coming from the heavens and from below the ground to generate the worldwide flood. However, Genesis 7:4 describes all of the water falling as rain.
    •Genesis 7:11, 7:17, 7:24 and 8:3 specify different intervals for the flood duration which have no apparent resolution. 11
    •Genesis 11:31 This describes Abraham as living in the city Ur, and associates that location with the Chaldeans. Archaeological evidence indicates that the *Chaldeans did not exist as a tribe at the time of Abraham; *they rose to power much later (800-1000 years later), during the 1st millennium BCE.
    •Genesis 14:14: This verse refers to Abram pursuing some surviving kings of Sodom and Gomorrah to the city of Dan. However, that place name *did not exist* until a long time after Moses’ death. Other locations are also identified in the Pentateuch by names that were invented long after the death of Moses.
    •Genesis 22:14: The verse states: “And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day…” There are many verses in the Torah that state that something has lasted “to this day”. That appears to have been written by a writer who composed the passages long after the events described, and long after Moses’ death.
    •Genesis 36 contained a list of Edomite kings which included some monarchs who were in power after Moses’ death. R.E. Friedman wrote: “In the eleventh century, Isaac ibn Yashush, a Jewish court physician of a ruler in Muslim Spain, pointed out that a list of Edomite kings that appears in Genesis 36 named kings who lived long after Moses was dead. Ibn Yashush suggested that the list was written by someone who lived after Moses. The response to his conclusion was that he was called “Isaac the blunderer.” *History has proven him to be correct*
    •Exodus 33:7 describes Moses entering the Tabernacle. Yet, the Tabernacle had not yet been built; its subsequent construction is described in Exodus 35.
    •Numbers 12:3: This verse states “Now the man Moses was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth.” (NKJ) If Moses were that humble, it is unlikely that he would have described himself in these glowing terms.
    •Numbers 25:1 which describes the rebellion at Peor referred to Moabite women; Numbers 25:6 14 refers to Midianites.
    •Deuteronomy 34:5-9: These verses describe the death, burial, age at death, physical condition at death, and mourning period for Moses. It is difficult for an individual to describe events at and after his or her death. Some have suggested that this portion of the Pentateuch (and only this portion) was written later by Joshua. However, R.E. Friedman wrote:
    “…in the sixteenth century, Carlstadt, a contemporary of Luther, commented that the account of Moses’ death is written in the same style as texts that precede it. This makes it difficult to claim that Joshua or anyone else merely added a few lines to an otherwise Mosaic manuscript.”

    Deuteronomy 34:10 This states “There has never been another prophet like Moses…” (NLT) This sounds like a passage written long after Moses’ death. Enough time would have had to pass for many other prophets to have arisen, to pass from the scene, and to have been evaluated.”
    Above from: http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_tora.htm

    You write:
    “Or how do you for instance, come to the conclusion that there would be no tools available to build an ark? Especially considering the entire civilization at that time was destroyed…”

    Ever tried to build a wooden boat? I have. Even with modern power tools that are thousands of times more accurate than the tools available to a possibly mythical Noah who lived just a few hundred years after a possibly mythical Adam, It will be almost impossible to build a really big wooden boat that doesn’t leak. The largest ever built by man in modern times was 350 ft. long and it HAD to use steel reinforcement and it still leaked like a sieve. Had to be pumped 24/7 or it would sink.

    The times were right in the middle of the “Bronze Age” and man had only bronze/stone tools to work with…bronze is a terrible sharp tool making material. Also the people of the Mesopotamian area were literate and mostly using clay as their “paper”…many hundreds of thousands of pieces of ancient “writings and paper” are now in museums around the world…that’s how we got the story of Gilgamesh…which was written 800 to 1000 years before Noah’s time. As mentioned earlier, all of civilization was not destroyed…remember Egypt, Indus Valley, China. They all continued without a break.

    Mr. Woodmorappe’s study really doesn’t matter anymore because there is just so much evidence from so many different science fields that have shown that the world was never completely covered in water…at least for the last 5 or 10 million years. Once Homo-sapiens got going around 200,000 years ago we have not looked back and DNA says we have never been reduced to 2 people in a garden 6000 years ago.

    Peace
    twom

  15. twom, I see it’s not really that you disagree with the scientific evidence for a world-wide flood, but that you are opposed to believing in the accuracy of the Bible in general. That’s fine but we are getting off the subject now, and delving into an enormous argument over the accuracy, authorship and authority of Bible books that goes beyond a discussion of the flood.

    I’m afraid I don’t have time to cover every supposed contradiction put forth about the Bible, so I can’t do your comment much justice. But for now, I’ll give you a brief answer, and may have to leave it at that.

    One method used over and over is to imagine there are contradictions in the stories and then claim there must have been multiple writers. Not only is that faulty reasoning, but lets be honest, it’s just an opinion. There are plenty with a different opinion. Me for example. There are also a great many scholars who have the opposite opinion, just as there are a great many scientists who believe in a global flood. Those like myself would say the supposed contradictions are not contradictions in the first place. Often, they are not even separate stories. They are not required to be by the text, and therefore, it is illogical to require them to be so just because it fits an opinion. In general, a written work, even one by many writers, strives to be non-contradictory. So the first emphasis should always be to look and see if there is some way these stories fit together. If there is such a way, then that is usually the correct interpretation. It’s the big picture so to speak.

    One has to read the Scripture in the simplest of terms to arrive at a contradiction in several of the places you mentioned, and avoid studying Jewish history or tradition or the context of the story. With some of your examples, the questions are more valid however. I’ll try to briefly give an answer to many of them.

    –There is no reason other than opinion to insist there are two accounts of the Israelites receiving water from a rock. It is plain from the text that these are two instances, not the same one told twice. It’s illogical to believe that wandering in the desert for 40 years, the Israelites would only run short of water once. The accounts are altogether different from each other in most respects. The actual text in the second account says “these are the waters of strife” which is what “meribah” means, and the application of the word a second time in the span of 40 years, does not make it the same story, but reinforces the same lesson. Indeed, how many times does a person go to work, travel through the same intersection, clock-in at the same time-clock, or drink out of the same water-fountain over a period of 40 years. Usually more than once.

    –An imagined contradiction is taking place in the number of animals gathered. The plain sense of the passage gives the exact grouping and later describes the scene in general. After all, the vast majority of animals went in two by two. In general, that’s what it would look like.

    –An imagined contradiction is taking place in the method God used to flood the earth, and the supposed contradiction especially has to ignore the science. God said in verse 4 that He would “cause it to rain” for 40 days and 40 nights. And the science of it says the volcanic eruptions along the oceanic ridge (which would be the fountains of the great deep bursting forth) are exactly what CAUSED it to rain as the steam cooled and fell back to earth.

    -Those times and dates given around the flood account pose no great difficulty. They help accurately ascertain the timing of things. I would refer you to any number of Bible commentaries, such as the old John Gill’s Exposition on the Entire Bible, when checking on those verses.

    -The Chaldeans didn’t exist when Abraham was alive, but the account was written centuries later by Moses. There is evidence Moses knew about the Chaldeans in his day. http://www.tms.edu/tmsj/tmsj20a.pdf

    -Genesis 14:14 does not say “city of” Dan. This presupposes the writer was referring to the city we know, when in fact, Josephus indicates it was a river. Keil & Delitzsch say the passage itself PROVES it cannot be identical with the valley the Danites conquered and named “Dan” because the description of the location, and the account of the retreat do not match the area around what we know as the city of Dan. K & D say it was “no doubt the same as the Dan-Jaan mentioned in 2Sa_24:6 in connection with Gilead, and to be sought for in northern Peraea to the south-west of Damascus.” Confusion of other cities by modern skeptics no doubt comes from similar misunderstandings.

    –You misrepresented Genesis 22:14. What was said to have lasted “to this day” was not the name of the place, but the proverb “on the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.” It is true, however, that this was written much later. Of course, Moses, who is traditionally said to be the writer, DID live much later than the story, so he fits the necessary requirement.

    –There is substantial reason to disagree with the premise that some of the Edomite kings listed in Genesis 36 were kings who lived after Moses. There are scholars who believe this list to be pre-Mosaic. Similar names do not matter since new kings commonly used names of previous kings.

    –Exodus 33:7 does not in any way describe Moses entering THE tabernacle. You should read that one again.

    –Numbers 25 records immorality with Moabites and Midianites because those two nations were allied with each other, and it was part of their strategy to get God to curse the Israelites. See Numbers 31:16

    –Obviously someone other than Moses wrote the account of his death. Whether it was Joshua or not, we only have tradition to go by. That the writing styles are similar, does not prove anything. It would seem to indicate a couple of things however. Any future writer was probably familiar with Moses’s writing style, either having read it, or known Moses very well, such as Joshua. Or it may have been that Moses dictated to a writer, who then finished the work when Moses had died. It could mean many such things, but it does not prove Moses didn’t write the bulk of the first five books.

    –Similar thoughts would provide possible solutions to passages that describe Moses as a great prophet or the “humblest” man who ever lived, etc… We are talking about the leader of a nation, who the text itself describes as enormously busy. I find it reasonable that while Moses provided the material, someone wrote it down for him, or helped him write it.

    Back on topic, I realize that for some it seems impossible that Noah could build an ark. People have difficulty understanding how it could be done. BUT, to this day we are ALSO at a loss as to how the pyramids were built.

    And yet there they are.

    The Chinese have also built enormous wooden structures that have lasted for a 1000 years, including ark-sized ships built out of wood.

    The presupposition of the “Bronze Age” is an old earth-Evolution assumption that when confronted with things like the pyramids, has no answer. The Marinetime technology existing in India at the time flies in the face of our assumptions.

    Removing such assumptions, and suddenly evidence abounds for the Biblical account.

  16. Hello anonymous guy,

    You write:
    “Sure, some would become extinct, and some did, but for the most part, it wouldn’t be too improbable for so many species of trees to survive a global flood. Especially since the amount of fossil fuels indicates there must have been a vastly lager (sic) quantity of vegetation in existence prior to the Flood than exists today.

    How about the many billions of trees that would have been left in the ground and underwater for a year…all dead and still standing, not making coal or oil. You have to understand that oil and coal were not made all of a sudden, in one year, about 4300 years ago. The process takes millions of years. Oil started “cooking” in the Permian age, about 250-300 million years ago, it was not suddenly formed in the mythical Noachian flood.

    You write:
    “Second, just because it is “widely believed” that Noah’s story was a knock-off does not mean that it is. It could just as easily be that the other stories are knock-offs of Noah’s. But of course, when one comes at evidence with the assumption, the interpretation will be entirely different. In this case, if something disagrees with the Bible, we immediately assume that the Bible must be wrong. But why not the source that disagrees? Why do we trust certain sources over others?”

    Noah’s story is widely believed to be a knock-off because it is known, without a doubt, that the Epic of Gilgamesh is much older than the Biblical story. Kinda’ hard to be a knock-off of the Bible if it was written earlier than the Bible. The people and society of Babylonia go back many thousands of years before the Christian God Yahweh was invented.

    You write:
    “Third, when you claim that Noah did not have the right tools to build the Ark, you assume that the people before us (Pre-Flood) were less intelligent. This is purely an assumption based on evolutionary bias. Most biblical scholars and creation scientists believe that humans before us were, in fact, more intelligent.”

    Evolution theory does not say, or imply, that humans that lived 4300 or even 43,000 years ago were any less intelligent than we are today. They simply had less built up knowledge and infrastructure and less ability to make advanced tools because so much stuff had yet to be invented. Our civilization of today is the product of the knowledge and inventiveness of the millions of bright, very smart people who preceded us.

    You write:
    “After all, why would God make Adam and Eve with caveman-like intelligence? Naturally, if creation was “very good,” as God declared, then Adam and Eve must have been physically perfect, and therefore smarter than us. That makes us the primitive ones.”

    DNA and archaeological evidence says there was never a time in the last 50,000 years when the human race was derived from only 2 individuals. Human Homo-sapiens seem to have been around for 200,000 years or so.

    You write:
    “…(By the way, Neanderthal brain cavities are twenty percent larger than those of present humans. I’m gonna take a shot in the dark and say that they were like that for a reason. )”

    You do know that Neanderthals died out about 25,000 years ago don’t you? Although their brain capacity was more than ours, it seems their toolkit didn’t change for near 200,000 years…in other words they didn’t progress and invent and that may have been at least part of the reason they died out. However just recently a lab in Switzerland has determined that about 2 to 4 percent of the population of Europe and some other countries has some Neanderthal DNA in their blood.

    You write:
    “Now, as for Egypt, their dates were built on Manetho’s history and the Sothic theory.
    Ptolomy II commissioned Manetho, a priest, to put together a history of Egypt. But Manetho’s writings are unsuitable for establishing a reliable Egyptain chronology because Manetho’s history was never intended to be a chronological account of Egyptian history.”

    The Egyptian dates we know today are pretty well accepted and modern dating methods are used extensively and accepted by Egyptologists universally. Modern technology has taken over almost completely in research now. This is not my field, but my understanding is there are not a lot of questions left in dating Egyptian chronology. Also there is NO indication of Egypt being totally destroyed (by water or anything else)and having to start their civilization all over again…a process that would have taken many-many hundreds, if not thousands of years. The history of the land and the leaders from the time of Narmer/Menes at about 3100 BC and on is well understood today.

    You write:
    “Now, carbon dating, on the other hand, I have a decent grasp on. Sixty years does not a perfect system make.”

    It took mankind 66 years to go from the first manned flight at Kitty Hawk till we landed on the moon.

    Below is an excerpt, details at end.
    “The carbon-14 dates have been carefully cross-checked with non-radiometric age indicators. For example growth rings in trees, if counted carefully, are a reliable way to determine the age of a tree. Each growth ring only collects carbon from the air and nutrients during the year it is made. To calibrate carbon-14, one can analyze carbon from the center several rings of a tree, and then count the rings inward from the living portion to determine the actual age. This has been done for the “Methuselah of trees”, the bristlecone pine trees, which grow very slowly and live up to 6,000 years. Scientists have extended this calibration even further. These trees grow in a very dry region near the California-Nevada border. Dead trees in this dry climate take many thousands of years to decay. Growth ring patterns based on wet and dry years can be correlated between living and long dead trees, extending the continuous ring count back to 11,800 years ago. “Floating” records, which are not tied to the present time, exist farther back than this, but their ages are not known with absolute certainty. An effort is presently underway to bridge the gaps so as to have a reliable, continuous record significantly farther back in time. The study of tree rings and the ages they give is called “dendrochronology”.”

    “Calibration of carbon-14 back to almost 50,000 years ago has been done in several ways. One way is to find yearly layers that are produced over longer periods of time than tree rings. In some lakes or bays where underwater sedimentation occurs at a relatively rapid rate, the sediments have seasonal patterns, so each year produces a distinct layer. Such sediment layers are called “varves”, and are described in more detail below. Varve layers can be counted just like tree rings. If layers contain dead plant material, they can be used to calibrate the carbon-14 ages.”

    “Another way to calibrate carbon-14 farther back in time is to find recently-formed carbonate deposits and cross-calibrate the carbon-14 in them with another short-lived radioactive isotope. Where do we find recently-formed carbonate deposits? If you have ever taken a tour of a cave and seen water dripping from stalactites on the ceiling to stalagmites on the floor of the cave, you have seen carbonate deposits being formed. Since most cave formations have formed relatively recently, formations such as stalactites and stalagmites have been quite useful in cross-calibrating the carbon-14 record.”

    “What does one find in the calibration of carbon-14 against actual ages? If one predicts a carbon-14 age assuming that the ratio of carbon-14 to carbon-12 in the air has stayed constant, there is a slight error because this ratio has changed slightly. Figure 9 shows that the carbon-14 fraction in the air has decreased over the last 40,000 years by about a factor of two. This is attributed to a strengthening of the Earth’s magnetic field during this time. A stronger magnetic field shields the upper atmosphere better from charged cosmic rays, resulting in less carbon-14 production now than in the past. (Changes in the Earth’s magnetic field are well documented)

    •There are well over forty different radiometric dating methods, and scores of other methods such as tree rings and ice cores.
    •All of the different dating methods agree–they agree a great majority of the time over millions of years of time. Some Christians make it sound like there is a lot of disagreement, but this is not the case. The disagreement in values needed to support the position of young-Earth proponents would require differences in age measured by orders of magnitude (e.g., factors of 10,000, 100,000, a million, or more). The differences actually found in the scientific literature are usually close to the margin of error, usually a few percent, not orders of magnitude!
    •Vast amounts of data overwhelmingly favor an old Earth. Several hundred laboratories around the world are active in radiometric dating. Their results consistently agree with an old Earth. Over a thousand papers on radiometric dating were published in scientifically recognized journals in the last year, and hundreds of thousands of dates have been published in the last 50 years. Essentially all of these strongly favor an old Earth.
    •Radioactive decay rates have been measured for over sixty years now for many of the decay clocks without any observed changes. And it has been close to a hundred years since the uranium-238 decay rate was first determined.
    •Both long-range and short-range dating methods have been successfully verified by dating lavas of historically known ages over a range of several thousand years.
    •The mathematics for determining the ages from the observations is relatively simple.
    The last three points deserve more attention. Some Christians have argued that something may be slowly changing with time so all the ages look older than they really are. The only two quantities in the exponent of a decay rate equation are the half-life and the time. So for ages to appear longer than actual, all the half-lives would have to be changing in sync with each other. One could consider that time itself was changing if that happened (remember that our clocks are now standardized to atomic clocks!). And such a thing would have to have occurred without our detection in the last hundred years, which is already 5% of the way back to the time of Jesus.
    Roger C. Wiens http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/wiens.html

    The man who wrote the above, which is just a small part of a multi page scientific exposition, is a believing Christian and active in his church. His CV is available on the internet. His organization ties are to http://asa3.org/ that bills itself as: “A Network of Christians in Science”

    I believe the man, it is after all his life’s work. According to him all the stuff you wrote about above has been worked out years ago. Of course we can’t forget that about 98% of all scientists in the world accepts and uses the science. One has to remember that a scientist can make his fortune and career by actually disproving currently accepted protocols. So if a scientists were able to actually disprove that C-14–or any other of the over 40 methods of radiometric dating–he would be famous and chased after by major universities and colleges to teach there. The fairly new AMS C-14 testing is even more accurate I hear.

    You write:
    Now, interestingly, the Flood plays a large part in the carbon dating process. Recall that there were very likely more plants before the Flood than there are today. This would further dilute the amount of C-14 and cause the C-14/C-12 ratio to be much smaller than today. Therefore, any age estimates using C-14 on organic material that dates from prior to the Flood will give much older dates than the true ages. Pre-Flood organic materials would be dated at perhaps ten times the true age.”

    Well we have a problem there…there is no actual evidence for a flood…and to my knowledge there is no difference in C-14 dating of material anytime before 4300 BC or anytime after…so would that mean that C-14 dating is proving no flood in this way also?

    Nice “talking” with you anonymous.

    Peace,
    twom

  17. twom, to answer just a couple of things. You perhaps don’t realize this, but the evidence of buried trees in the layers of the earth are used as evidence FOR the flood. Oil reserves are used as evidence FOR the flood. The evidence is not inconsistent whatsoever with a world-wide flood. And while the evolutionary assumption claims it takes millions of years to produce oil, there is evidence (including industrial production of oil) that shows this is not the case given the right cataclysmic conditions, -conditions which are thought to have occurred during the flood.

    Second, just the opening paragraph from that paper about radiometric dating has some six statements that I believe are false. In other words, I completely disagree with the assumptions at the very beginning. And I disagree because I sincerely believe the evidence proves otherwise. Radiometric dating was discovered AFTER evolutionists began with the assumption of an old earth. Often, circular reasoning is used in “dating” rocks or fossils, but they both depend on evolutionary time-scales being “true” in the first place. Both sides are starting with assumptions.

    Your opening paragraphs of that paper claimed these methods confirm each other. Really? Then why did William D. Stansfield, PhD, Cal-Tech Biology Instructor and believer in evolution say “It is obvious that radiometric dating techniques may not be the absolute dating methods that they are claimed to be. Age estimates on a given geological stratum by different radiometric methods are often quite different?” -1997

    Those dates tend to differ with the same proportions too, indicating an “event” (or perhaps more than one) caused the discrepancies. Did that “event” include the flood? Here’s another quote:

    “There has been in recent years the horrible realization that radiodecay rates are not as constant as previously thought, nor are they immune to environmental influences. And this could mean that the atomic clocks were reset during some global disaster, -and events which brought the Mesozoic to a close may not be 65 million years ago, but rather, within the age and memory of man.”
    -Frederic B. Jueneman “Secular Catastrophism” Industrial Research and Development, Volume 24, Page 21, June 1982

    The Bible says God holds all things together. If part of the mechanisms of the Flood, included a release of the Nuclear Force Factors in certain ways, He would have only had to “let go” just a little bit, to radically accelerate radiometric decay (even across the entire universe, temporarily) … to get the magmas of Earth’s mantle churning enough to trigger the massive continental movements.

    But regardless, what’s really interesting is that radiometric dating doesn’t disprove the Flood account with the Egyptian civilization anyway. The Great Pyramid of Giza is thought to be the actual oldest sign of mankind. Accounting for the equilibrium problem with C-14 … it falls right within the first few centuries after Noah’s Flood ended.

  18. The truth of the matter is there is more evidence now for a world-wide flood than there has ever been. There is more evidence and reason to believe in the Bible than there has ever been. It’s ironic that now of all times, we would claim the issues have been settled. The idea that this matter has been “settled” against the idea of a flood or against the idea of the Bible, is a mere opinion based on an evolutionary world-view. One that is not accepted by a great many scientists, scholars, theologians, or thinking people.

    You may disagree with the evidence presented, and disagree with those who hold to a more Biblical world-view, but the fact remains the Bible is scientifically defended more forcefully today, than ever.

  19. It doesn’t make the slightest bit of difference, not even a nano-difference, that there would be an “older” account of the flood.

    The flood was a world-wide event which the entire human race experienced, getting the population down to only 8 people.

    Did you think that they had a rule that no one could write about it, or tell stories about it, until Moses was born? Certainly not. By the time of Moses, one would expect it to already be a part of lore. If it wasn’t, then that would be a greater evidence against it.

    Moses, however, wrote from the inspiration of God, proven through prophecy, history, and miraculous works. That’s why Moses’ account is taken much more seriously to be an accurate description of the event.

  20. Twom wrote:The people and society of Babylonia go back many thousands of years before the Christian God Yahweh was invented.

    –Exactly as the Bible describes. The Bible does not start with Christianity or Judaism.

    Twom wrote: Also there is NO indication of Egypt being totally destroyed (by water or anything else)and having to start their civilization all over again…a process that would have taken many-many hundreds, if not thousands of years. The history of the land and the leaders from the time of Narmer/Menes at about 3100 BC and on is well understood today.

    –even if those dates were actually settled, and even if those dates actually conflicted with Noah’s flood to a substantial degree, the Egyptian civilization as we understand it is a post-flood civilization. There should be no record of it being destroyed and rebuilt.

    –Carbon 14 dating SHOULD also work fairly well in most formerly living things after the flood because the conditions since the flood have remained basically the same.

    Hence, as one website writes:

    ….radiocarbon dates on objects of known age have confirmed the reliability of radiocarbon dating, and hence dendrochronology, when applied to the last 2,000 years, at least. The radiocarbon dates on the Dead Sea Scrolls are a good example. Thus we know that trees growing in the last 2,000 years or more haven’t been growing multiple rings per year….

    But that is to be expected. Radiocarbon assumptions should remain fairly valid since the flood. There has been no major environmental change during this time. Prior to the flood however, there is substantial evidence of a different environment, and not surprisingly, the radiocarbon dates start coming into question.

    In fact tree rings have been used to CORRECT radiocarbon dates:

    “….The dates that were obtained so far have been used to correct errant radiocarbon dating readings which had significant errors in dates over 3000 years before present….”

    (sourced from Johnson, Russ and Anne, “The Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest.” Chalfant Press, Bishop, CA., 1970 and Beasley, Greg J., “Long-Lived Trees: Their Possible Testimony to a Global Flood and Recent Creation.” Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal, vol. 7 (1), 1993, pp. 43-67.)

    More evidence that Carbon14 didn’t match up with tree rings:

    “The oldest group of trees, found in Tasmania, was once estimated using carbon-14 dating to be 30,000 to 40,000 years old, but as we know this type of dating method uses present day process rates that are not necessarily the same as they were in the past. This clearly does not follow the Biblical account of earth history and when the rings of these trees were counted the oldest was 3,500 years old. The oldest tree that has ever been recorded by counting tree rings is a bristlecone pine by the name of “Methuselah.” This pine tree was recorded to be 4,753 years old.” -Creation Truth Foundation

    Older trees on the basis of tree rings have been found only on dead wood, so historical room for a flood remains.

    Many of the other Carbon-14 “calibrating” methods assume an old earth, and assume layers of sediment are deposited over millions of years. Thus, the 60 feet of sediment deposited by the Mt. St. Helens eruption in a matter of minutes would have been assumed to have taken hundreds of thousands of years, if not for the fact we watched it happen.

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