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A major contention of young-earth creationists* is that radiometric dating* (measuring radioactive decay) is not reliable because the rate of nuclear decay was greater in the past than it is in the present.First, this contention creates more problems than it solves.This paper traces the reactions of Seventh-day Adventists and American evangelical Christians toward C-14 dating.Among several radioactive dating methods, the radiocarbon (C-14) dating method (which was invented by Willard Frank Libby of the University of Chicago in the late 1940s) occupies a special position in archaeology and ancient history, as well as geology, because it can give the absolute age of those carbonaceous archaeological findings that were not older than the half-life of C-14.One group has been made up of fundamentalist evangelicals, who accepted the global effect of Noah's flood and a young earth and rejected radioactive dates.The other, non-literalist group of evangelicals accepted some kinds of evolutionary uniformitarian hypotheses and radioactive dating.
In addition to the criticisms raised by Woods concerning the level of C-14 and the constant influx of cosmic radiation in the atmosphere, Harris argued that it would be virtually impossible to know whether the C-14 sample was free of foreign carbon-containing material.
adiocarbon (C-14) dating has several implications for Christianity, particularly in terms of the interpretation of the first part of Genesis.
Since its advent in the mid-20th century, it has been one of the central topics in the creation-evolution controversy.
Simply put, the nuclear radiation rate necessary to make sense of a six-thousand-year-old universe would have been lethal to plant, animal, and human life.
Furthermore, physicists have not simply presumed decay rates to be consistent.