Diamonds—Time Capsules of Billions of Years?

by Ken Ham on August 23, 2021
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“Ugly diamonds”—or fibrous diamonds—aren’t the kind you’re likely to see on a lady’s finger, but you might find them in a scientific laboratory. Some of these cloudy diamonds contain small pockets of fluid, believed by many geologists to be billions of years old and therefore supposedly able to give us insight into early earth. But where do these dates come from?

Well, a popular summary of some new research on these fibrous diamonds states,

By modeling [the] decay [of uranium and thorium] and how much helium 4 leakage is possible over time, Weiss and his colleagues determined a broad age range for the stones. They then ruled out ages that would be impossible based on known tectonic and thermal conditions in Earth’s mantle and crust at the diamonds’ formation site. Combining these data yielded an upper limit on leakage, which the researchers could apply to all fibrous diamonds they studied.

So the dates come from radiometric dating (which has a lot of problems!), and they throw out whichever dates don’t fit with their assumptions and preconceptions about the conditions on early earth—conditions they say they “know,” but they weren’t there! Rather, those conditions come from computer modeling, based on evolutionary assumptions about the past. And such models are constantly changing!

The dates come from radiometric dating (which has a lot of problems!), and they throw out whichever dates don’t fit with their assumptions and preconceptions about the conditions on early earth—conditions they say they “know,” but they weren’t there!

So why might they get a “broad age range” for these diamonds? Well, as I mentioned above, radiometric dating has a lot of problems, including a chain of assumptions one must accept to believe radiometric dating gives reliable ages:

  1. The initial conditions of the rock sample are accurately known.
  2. The amount of parent or daughter elements in a sample has not been altered by processes other than radioactive decay.
  3. The decay rate (or half-life) of the parent isotope has remained constant since the rock was formed.

If even one of those assumptions is wrong, you can’t trust the dates! And we have no way of knowing if those assumptions are accurate because we weren’t there in the past. It’s very likely, because of supernatural creation and the global flood event, that those assumptions are totally wrong! That’s why radiometric dating of rocks of known age (i.e., scientists actually observed the rocks form) have yielded wildly different dates.

It’s also worth noting that some diamonds have been found to contain carbon-14. This radioactive form of carbon has a very short half-life (the time it takes half the atoms to decay), so in just a few hundred thousand years, there should be no detectable carbon-14 left. And yet we find carbon-14 in diamonds! Since diamonds can’t really be contaminated due to their hardness, we know that carbon isn’t there due to contamination. That means diamonds aren’t billions of years old, but just thousands!

There’s only one absolute dating method we can trust. And that is the Word of the One who has always been there, who has revealed to us the true history of the universe: the Bible.

Get More Answers on Answers News

This item was discussed yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Bodie Hodge, Dr. Jennifer Rivera, and Dr. Gabriela Haynes. Answers News is our twice-weekly news program filmed here at the Creation Museum and broadcast on my Facebook page and the Answers in Genesis Facebook page. We also covered the following intriguing topics:

  • Does having an appendix help you live longer?
  • What’s a “human milk-feeding individual”?
  • How is a fossil beetle so remarkably well preserved?
  • And more!

Watch the entire episode of Answers News for August 23, 2021.

Be sure to join us each Monday and Wednesday at 2 p.m. (ET) on my Facebook page or the Answers in Genesis Facebook page for Answers News. You won’t want to miss this unique news program that gives science and culture news from a distinctly biblical and Christian perspective.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
Ken

This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

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