2 Timothy 3:16-17

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”

Carbon dating does not give ages in excess of 100,000 years old. If time would have allowed such ages, the amounts of carbon-14 would be too small to detect. In practice, even old earth believers do not use carbon dates much above 60,000 years – the length of ten half-lives.

The Bible tells us that the Earth is just over 6,000 years old. The majority of artifact dates should be less than 4,500 years old – the approximate date of the Flood. So, while we are right not to accept such inflated dates, we find that carbon dates of less than 4,000 years can be remarkably helpful to us.

For example, in 1947 the well-known Dead Sea Scrolls were found by a Bedouin boy in a cave. These scrolls featured texts from the Bible, reading almost exactly the same as texts today. So scholars at the time decided that the scrolls must be about 500 years old, as this fitted with their assumptions regarding the dating of various Old Testament books. However, the scrolls were wrapped in linen. This linen – a plant material – could be carbon dated. The carbon date was calculated to be between 150 BC and 70 AD. So these scrolls were about a thousand years older than any previously known Hebrew biblical texts! This carbon date, together with the fact that the text was virtually unchanged in that 1,000 years, is consistent with our acceptance of the divine inspiration of Scripture, and not with the attitudes of the so-called higher critics.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that Your Bible is true. Thank You that Your word is constantly vindicated. Amen.

Author: Paul F. Taylor

Ref: DeYoung, D. (2005), Thousands… Not Billions (Green Forest, AR: Master Books, Kindle Edition), location 386. Image: Psalms Scroll, Dead Sea Scrolls, Public Domain.