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Bible vs. Science: How old is Earth?

This question has been asked million times by both Christians and atheists trying to prove them wrong. Let’s see what the Bible and science have to say about it.

EarthThis question is not an easy one. The brightest minds have been debating about it for a long time now. Among Christians alone, there have been heated discussions on what the real age of Earth is for at least several hundred years. As we face the advancements in the science and technology, we also face the rise in the desire to find out the truth from the biblical and scientific point of view.

The fact is the Bible never made the minimum age statement, though some of the scholars state that it mentions that its clues point out that the Earth is at least ten thousand years. So, let’s see what scientific facts we have that help us better understand the reality of Earth’s age.

The truth is all the scholars that tried to find an answer to this question started their investigations with the genealogies mentioned in the first book of the Bible, Genesis. Taking the length of life of all the humans that lived on the earth even before the flood, scholars stated that the Earth is around six thousand up to fifteen thousand years at max.

An interesting fact is that there was a particular person that claims to figure out the exact day of the Earth creation. According to the words of James Ussher who was the Bishop in the Church of Ireland, the Earth was created on Sunday, October 23, 4004 before Christ’s birth.

how old Earth really is

However, other authors do not entirely agree with this statement. They claim that there are pitfalls the Bishop took into account. The first one is that Bishop assumed that all of the mentioned in the Bible patriarchs died right a day before their next birthday, which is totally impossible. It was easier to count this way, but it does not make his calculations any more precise. The other thing he stated was that there are all the people from the genealogies and no one was missed from the big picture. Nevertheless, other scholars believe that this might not necessarily be true.

And finally, some scientists disagreed with him that a day of creation was a day that consisted of 24 hours. They stated that it was a metaphor and that every “day” was actually just a limited time frame with a beginning and an end that could have last for more than twenty-four hours.

If talking about people that were not included into genealogies, this is a common practice for the Bible. Here is what Rich Deem from “God and Science” states: “Although Archbishop Ussher assumed the Genesis genealogies were complete, it is evident from the rest of the Bible that those genealogies were telescoped (some names were left out for the sake of brevity), which is common in biblical genealogies but rare in modern genealogies. Similarly, the key genealogical terms (such as "son" and "father") have much broader meanings in Hebrew than their corresponding English words. The Hebrew word translated "son" can also have the sense of "grandson," "great-grandson," "descendant," etc. Likewise, the Hebrew word translated "father" can mean "grandfather," "great grandfather," "ancestor," etc.”

READ ALSO: How many people wrote the Bible?

There is also a problem of literal and abstract understanding of the Bible. Personally, I believe that if God said through Moses that it was a day with an evening and a morning, this is enough for us to believe that this is precisely how long it was. However, apart from Bishop Ussher, what do other people say about the fact of how old the Earth really is?

how old Earth according to the Bible

Well, the thoughts vary. However, most of the scholars agree that according to the Bible the Earth is somewhere in between 6000 and 15000 years old. Even you consider counting its age by taking all of the genealogies into account; there is still time that was before Adam’s creation we have not agreed on the length of yet.

Here is what a different source mentions about the length of one day of creation: “Whenever a word in Scripture can have a variety of meanings, we must go to the context to determine what it does mean and not be content with what it might mean. And when we do, we find that the first time yom is used, it is defined as a solar day (Genesis 1:3), and then a total day/night cycle (1:3).

Furthermore, yom is modified by "evening and morning," which in Hebrew can only mean a literal day. It is also modified by an ordinal number (first, second, etc.), a construction limited in Hebrew to that of a literal day. Elsewhere the six days of creation are equated with the six days of our work week (Exodus 20:11), a formula incorporated in the fourth of the Ten Commandments regarding the Sabbath rest. We should mention that the use of a numeral to modify "days," in this case "6," is again reserved for a literal day in Hebrew, as is the use of the plural word "days."

how old is Earth according to science

Suffice it to say that no one could conclude that Scripture explicitly places Creation any longer ago than a few thousand years, and to my knowledge no one does. Many do hold to an older position, but not for Scriptural reasons. They are convinced by radioisotope dating, perhaps, or maybe the molecular clock of mutation rates, or some other line of thinking, but not from Scripture.”

As you see, scholars split down the middle on their thoughts about how old the Earth actually is. I stick to the idea that God meant what He meant: a day is a day the way we know it today, and I can trust this information, especially knowing that even scholars have proven this theory to be true. Meanwhile, there is also a great amount of evidence available for us from the genealogies from the Bible as well as certain historical facts of the times after the birth of Christ. Taking everything into consideration the Earth is a young planet. It did not exist for billions of years; it was created in one day along with other parts of the solar system and other universe details we will talk about in a separate article. So far, this is the evidence and different schools of thought about the precise age of our planet.

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The bible interprets itself. How long were the creative days?

The fact that they were epochs and not literal 24 hour days is demonstrated by Genesis 2:4, where the whole 6 days leading up until God's rest day, which, itself, by this time has continued upwards some 6 thousand years, is described as 1day.

"This is a history of the heavens and the earth in the time they were created, in the day that Jehovah God made earth and heaven, Genesis 2,4."

Similarly, how long can I day be to God?

However, do not let this escape your notice, beloved ones, that one day is with Jehovah as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day," 2Peter 3:8.

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Answered 9 months ago.
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