Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 9, 1967
NUMBER 27, PAGE 8b-10a

Evolution Examined

Harry E. Ozment

One of the most interesting aspects of the evolutionary theory is the time required for the evolutionary process. Evolutionists are generally agreed as to the age of the earth — 4 1/2 to 5 billion years. Life is believed to have existed about 1/2 billion years. Man was supposed to have evolved about one million years ago. Although evolution is not proved by a great time span, this great time is necessary to the theory because evolution is a slow process. It is generally said that 50,000 years are required to develop just one species.

The earth's existence is usually divided into six eras. Notice the following chart:

The figures in the above chart have been derived by two "radioactive" methods. These methods are, without fail, presented as fool-proof, and many Christians have been hoaxed into believing without question these dates. Let us briefly examine these two dating methods:

(1) The Uranium Lead-Radioactive Method. This method is used for long-range dating. Therefore, rocks which might be very old are dated by this process. Before a person can understand how this process works, he must first know what "radioactivity" is. Radioactivity is a process in which the atoms of certain elements give off very minute particles and become another element. In this process, uranium atoms emit these very minute particles and uranium finally becomes lead. The rate at which particles are emitted (and, therefore, the rate at which uranium becomes lead) is regular as the years go by, so the evolutionists say, and moreover, scientists claim to know this rate. Therefore, the age of a rock that has these radioactive elements (uranium and lead) in it can be determined by analyzing the uranium and lead content, and then computing the time required for the uranium to produce that amount of lead. There are, however, three dangerous assumptions (ideas that never have been proven) that are made in this process. If these assumptions are not so, the whole process is worthless:

(a) It is assumed that no lead was present in the analyzed rock at the time of its origin.

(b) It is assumed that the original amount of uranium can be determined.

(c) It is assumed that the rate of radioactivity (i.e., the rate at which the uranium became lead) has always been the same. Therefore, if this main method of dating rocks is riddled with so many assumptions, the suggested age of the earth (5 billion years) is questionable. Scientist have yet to prove that this earth is billions, or even millions, of years old.

(2) The Carbon-14 Radioactive Method. This method is used for comparatively short-range dating. Therefore, fossils, instead of rocks, are dated by this process. Carbon-14 is not like regular carbon. Cosmic rays (which are radio-active) in outer space enter the earth's atmosphere and form a radioactive carbon (carbon-14) out of regular carbon (carbon-12). This radioactive carbon then combines with the oxygen in our atmosphere and forms radioactive carbon dioxide. When growing plants feed upon carbon dioxide, a certain amount of this radioactive carbon dioxide enters their structures. Logically, the animals that feed upon these plants also take into their structures this carbon-14. When this animal dies, of course it no longer assimilates carbon-14, but the carbon-14 already in its now-dead body disintegrates at a regular rate. Scientist claim that they know this rate. Therefore, the age of this fossil can be determined by discovering the amount of carbon-14 has disintegrated, and then (using the disintegration rate) calculating the time required for that amount of carbon-14 to disintegrate. Once again, some assumptions are made in this process:

(a) It is assumed that cosmic rays have entered the earth's atmosphere and have formed radioactive carbon dioxide at a regular rate through thousands of years.

(b) It is assumed that the carbon-14 in the fossil has not been decreased by an interaction with its environment. Therefore, if the foundation of this main method of dating fossils rests upon assumptions, then the ages attached to fossils are questionable. Scientists have yet to prove beyond doubt when life began here upon this earth.

Well, how old is the earth according to the Bible? Quite honestly, the Bible does not reveal this. However, there are several people who try to fit the creation account into the dates which evolutionists teach. As a result, several views have arisen. There are both good and bad points about each view. Let me emphasize at this point that the Christian should not feel the urge to be put on the defense on this subject. The Christian has faith that God created the universe how long God chose to bring about the creation is really immaterial to the Christian's faith. To the evolutionist's "faith", however, this question is very relevant — he must have a long span of time if his theory is so. The evolutionist should be on the defense. Nevertheless, here are the different views taken as to how old this earth is according to the Bible:

(1) Long Chaos View. This view is taken from Genesis 1:2, "And the earth was without form, and void." Proponents of this view maintain that the earth remained in this condition for many ages. This, then, would account for "science's" old ages of rocks.

(2) Gap View. This view is also taken from Genesis 1:2, "And the earth was without form and void." Proponents of this view translate the word "was" in verse 2 as "became." They maintain that God first created the earth in an orderly fashion and that pre-Adamic (before Adam) race of men was put on earth. This pre-Adamic race sinned; therefore, God destroyed all that was on the earth — thus it "became void." Notice the following chart which summarizes this "Adamic Renovation Theory":

The rocks and fossils analyzed by scientists existed during the time of the pre-Adamic race of men — hence, the old ages.

(3) Creation Day-Revelatory Day View. The work of creation actually took many ages to perfect (thus, the old ages of rocks and fossils). The process of creation was merely revealed to Moses over a period of seven days.

(4) Creation Day-Geological Age View. Proponents of this view assert that each "day" in Genesis 1 represents many years in a geological age. Therefore, this greatly extended time span accounts for the old ages of rocks and fossils.

(5) Creation Day Solar (24-hour) Day View. Proponents of this view assert that each "day" of Genesis lean toward this view. And I feel not the slightest urge to apologize for it just because an evolutionist says that this earth has been here for 5 billion years — after all, the methods that he used to attain those dates are, at least to me, highly questionable. In fact, there are several reasons why this view is the most probable of these that have been listed:

(a) The creation days were divided into periods darkness and light ("evening and morning") just as our solar days are (Gen. 1:5,8,13,19,23,31.)

(b) The phrase "evening and morning" became a technical Hebrew term for a solar day. Notice, for example, Daniel 8:14 in the ASV: "And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred evenings and mornings then shall the sanctuary be cleansed." (In the AV, notice the footnote on the word "days". )

(c) If the third day were a geological age, plants would have had to survive 1/2 of a geological age in darkness (which is an utter scientific impossibility — plants must have light to live.)

(d) If each day were a geological age, then Adam lived through 1 1/2 ages — he was created on the sixth day — (and that would make him many hundreds of thousands of years old, as evolutionists count ages) before he was evicted from the Garden of Eden (and, as you can see, this does not take into account how long Adam lived after he was evicted from Eden.)

(e) In Exodus-20:8-11, God draws an analogy between the seven (solar) days of the Jewish week and the seven days of the creation week.

(f) In the Hebrew language, when a numerical adjective (such as first, second, third, etc.) precede "yom" (Hebrew word for "day"), "day" always refers to a solar day.

There is one word of caution due here to the student: Don't let anyone trap you into affirming that the earth was created in 4004 B. C. if you agree with the Creation Day-Solar Day View. You don't have to affirm any such thing! The date 4004 B. C. is called Ussher's Chronology, and it appears at the top of the first page of many Bibles. This is a man-made date. Ussher, who was an archbishop of the church of England, believed that the genealogies listed in Genesis 5 and 11 were lists of father-and-son relationships (hence, a complete genealogy without any missing generations). Thus, he added the years that each man lived and concluded that the earth was created in 4004 B. C. — 6000 years ago. However, the genealogies in Genesis 5 and 11 are not complete (compare Gen. 11:10-16 and Lk. 3:35-36), and generations are missing. In fact, it was very common that a genealogy "skip" generations (compare, for example, I Chron. 6:3-14 and Ezra 7:1-5). Therefore, genealogies are undependable for dating and the Ussher Chronology is inaccurate and unacceptable.

Although the scriptures do not state specifically the age of the earth, virtually all Biblical evidence points to the age of the earth in the thousands instead of in the millions or billions that is required for evolution.

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