How old id the Earth? To many, this is a frivolous or meaningless question. The Earth is under our feet: it was there yesterday; it'll be there tomorrow (we hope). . . . I think it is the pivotal, central question about our origins. The scientific and educational establishments have made it the centerpiece of their religion of uniformitarianism. This ill-gotten jawcracker simply means the Earth formed billions of years ago and gradually changed into the form we see now. Bible-believing Christians and others (Muslims included) believe our planet was created by God thousands of years ago and that the Great Flood killed almost all life, re-arranged the surface features, and created the strata, complete with "fossils", the uniformitarians (Lyell-Agassiz-Darwinists or LAD's) call the "geological column". Young-Earth creationists (YEC's) are also, of course, catastrophists, although not out of the Velikovsky mold. Dr. V. was a brilliant man and a careful observer of the effects of our catastrophic past, but his causative hypotheses of the Deluge were too wild to believe. Simply put, YEC's believe Earth was created 6,000+ years ago and all the life at the same time. This included dinosaurs and us. Many species (or kinds) did not survive the Flood.
What about carbon-14 dating? Radiometric dating has been shown (RATE Project, etc.) to be alarmingly inconsistent. Some objects have been dated by different labs at anywhere from 50 to 50 million years old. "Erratics", dates out of sequence, are routinely discarded. Catastrophic events have been shown to affect the balance of isotopes (C-14 to C-16 ratios, for instance). The traditional YEC's, on the other hand, adhere rigidly to dating established by Bishop Ussher from Biblical genealogies. They think (see ICR.org) the linkages in "Genesis" from Adam to Abraham are inclusive and admit of less than 2,000 years. Abraham was born about 2,100 B.C. Thus they date creation at about 4,004 B.C. I believe it to thave been at least ten-thousand years before that date. I cannot logically defend that hypothesis; the traditionalists might accuse me of ignoring the Bible's authority. I still strongly believe in young-earth creation by God. Ex nihilo!--Daniel Moore