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Azazel S. Kasadya

Relgious and Political Rantings of an Agnostic

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Creationism

Does Earth’s Decaying Magnetic Field Prove Young Earth creationism?

The Earth’s magnetic field is rapidly decaying. Young earth creationists point out that the magnetic field was 40% stronger about a thousand years ago. Therefore, it would have been too strong to sustain life 20,000 years ago, so the earth must be younger than that. This theory was first introduced by Dr. Thomas Barnes who believed that Earth’s magnetic field decays at a rapid non-cyclic rate. Measuring of the strength of the magnetic field began in 1845, and since then, it has been decaying at a rate of 5% a century (Snelling 2012).

The magnetic field protects us from particles coming from the sun and directs them to the poles. In fact, this is what produces the Northern and Southern lights. If not for Earth’s magnetic field, life would cease to exist. Also, some animals that migrate rely on the magnetic field (Roach, 2004). The magnetic field extends into outer space, several thousands of kilometers above the earth.

The problem with the young earth creationists’ argument is that scientists have found that the magnetic field does geomagnetic reversals usuallyabout every few hundred thousand years and therefore it is self-sustaining. This is where the magnetic south and magnetic north are switched. For example, 800,000 years ago, a compass would have pointed South (Oregon State University, 2017). Evidence has been found on the sea floors to support this idea. Stripes of magnetism are alternating from north to south. These are referred to as “magnetic striping” (Magnetic Striping, 2014)

Creationists such as Dr. Russell Humphreys have argued that these reversals happened in rapid succession during and after the worldwide flood as described in the Bible. According to Humphreys, tectonic plates moving to the earth’s core would have caused the great flood in Genesis and this would cool the earth’s outer core. This cooling would cause magnetic field reversals over a short period of time. Humphreys believes that the magnetic field was growing in strength until the time of Christ and then it reversed (Humphreys, 1993).

However, that isn’t supported by what scientists have found, and much of the work of Barnes (and Humphreys work since it was based off Barnes) has been discredited. Barnes measured the strength of the magnetic field around 25 times. The model Barnes used was outdated, making his beliefs about the magnetic field invalid. Going by Gunst’s and McDonald’s data, Barnes didn’t use an appropriate measurement to measure the strength of Earth’s magnetic field (Mellem, 2005). He only looked at the dipole component of the magnetic field. The problem with this is that the magnetic field’s strength can remain the same, as the dipole field decays. The dipole field also seems to shift directions much more rapidly than the magnetic field which can be observed in rocks and ancient pottery (Matson 2017).

Then there is the dynamo theory which seems to be the most accepted theory regarding the magnetic field today. The earth’s core brings about the magnetic field. This is done by the hotter metals in the core rising while the cooler heavier metals settle on the core creating a convection current. The Coriolis effect is caused on the core due to the earth rotating on its axis. This causes the core to spin and cut through the previous magnetic field so a new one can be formed. Therefore, the magnetic field is a continued process that has lasted at least three billion years. (Rational Wiki, 2017)

In conclusion, the decaying magnetic field does not prove a young earth. The data used to prove a young earth by using the decaying magnetic field is outdated. Scientists have evidence that the magnetic field reverses every few hundred thousand years; therefore, the earth is probably about 4.5 billion years old as suggested.

Support for a Young Earth:

https://creation.com/the-earths-magnetic-field-evidence-that-the-earth-is-young

http://www.icr.org/article/earths-magnetic-field-young/

https://answersingenesis.org/evidence-for-creation/5-rapidly-decaying-magnetic-field/

Support for an Old Earth:

http://apps.usd.edu/esci/creation/age/content/creationist_clocks/magnetic_field.html

https://infidels.org/library/modern/dave_matson/young-earth/specific_arguments/magnetic_field.html

https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Geomagnetism

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/magfields.html

http://www.psc.edu/science/Glatzmaier/glatzmaier.html

http://gondwanaresearch.com/hp/magfield.htm

Resources:

Humphreys, D. R. The Earth’s Magnetic Field Is YoungActs & Facts. 22. 1993 (8).

“Magnetic Striping.” Prince William Network. Our Changing Continent. n.d. Web. 27 September, 2017.

Matson, Dave. “Young-earth ‘proof’ #11: Since the earth’s magnetic field is decaying at an exponential rate, its strength would have been unrealistically high 25,000 years ago. Thus, Earth is less than 25,000 years old. Retrieved 28 September 2017 from https://infidels.org/library/modern/dave_matson/young-earth/specific_arguments/magnetic_field.html

Mellem, Kevin. The Erosion of Continents as a Creation Clock. 2005. Retrieved from http://apps.usd.edu/esci/creation/age/content/creationist_clocks/magnetic_field.html

Oregon State University. “Earth’s magnetic field ‘simpler than we thought’.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 July 2017. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/07/170707070517.htm

Rational Wiki – Retrieved on 29, September, 2017 from https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Geomagnetism

Roach, John. The Earth’s Magnetic Field is Fading. National Geographic News. 2004, September 9th. Retrieved from http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/09/0909_040909_earthmagfield.html

Snelling, Dr. Andrew A. – #5 Rapidly Decaying Magnetic Field. Answers in Genesis. October 1st, 2012. Retrieved from https://answersingenesis.org/evidence-for-creation/5-rapidly-decaying-magnetic-field/

Does the Faint Sun Paradox Prove Young Earth Creationism?

The sun produces at least half of its energy from the conversation of hydrogen to helium within its core. This could sustain the sun for 10 billion years and scientists estimate that the sun is nearing its “half-life.” Due to these reactions in its core, the sun would change and become brighter over time. According to evolutionists, the earth contained life about 3.8 billion years ago. It is believed that the earth remained at close to the same temperature throughout time. This paradox says that the sun only was emitting 70% of its current intensity during the early history of earth. As a result, water would have been frozen and therefore life couldn’t have existed on an early earth. Since then, the sun has been getting hotter and hotter (Faulkner, 1980).. Young earth creationists use this as an argument to support their theory. Admittingly, the young earth creationism seems to solve this paradox as there would not have been time for the sun to have sun to have such a large shift in temperature. Geological records show that the earth throughout time had a relatively warm surface which seems to contradict the faint sun of that time. However, there is evidence that the young earth had liquid water as observed by Zircon Grains that are about 4.2 billion years old (Wilde et al., 2001). There is also biological evidence that there was life on earth about 3.465 billion years ago (Scholf, 2006)

One Hypothesis states that there could have been more greenhouse gases during this period of time. Carbon dioxide may have been in higher quantities at the time because there was no bacterial photosynthesis to change the carbon dioxide to oxygen, and also there was more volcanic activity to add to the amount of carbon dioxide. There may have been significant amounts of methane and carbonyl sulfide to increase the greenhouse effect. However, there has been information from ancient soils that seem to indicate that carbon dioxide levels weren’t that high during this period (Wikipedia 1, 2017).

Also, radio genetic heat which is caused by radioactive decay of isotopes such as uranium-235, uranium-238, and potassium-40, was probably higher at the time. This would have caused the crust to have higher temperatures which would lead to the earth having a greater amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (Wikipedia 1, 2017).

Then there is the fact that the moon would have been much closer to earth back then and therefore there was more tidal heating taking place (Rathi 2016). Of course, one problem with this solution is that Mars also had liquid water back then. Mars doesn’t have any moons so how would it have had liquid water being that it was further away from the sun? It can be argued that since Mars had liquid water billions of years ago, why couldn’t earth also have liquid water in its early beginnings?

The young sun may have been much more violent with solar flares when it was young. The heat from these solar flares may have heated the atmosphere of the Earth. This could have caused Nitrogen molecules to split and combine with other molecules creating molecules such as Nitrous Oxide which would have a powerful greenhouse effect (Rathi, 2016).

Another hypothesis is that the cloud layers were much thinner billion years ago due to the lack of plants and algae (Therefore the chemicals given off by plants and algae that help form clouds weren’t being produced). The sun would have had a more direct path to the oceans and would still be able to heat them enough so they didn’t freeze. Even though the sun’s ray were weaker, they wouldn’t be reflected into space by the clouds (Neyman, 2010).

Some may refer to the Gaia Hypothesis which was formulated by a Chemist named James Lovelock. According to this hypothesis the earth is a complex system that is self-regulated and it continually seeks an environment to sustain life (Wikipedia 2). When it comes to the faint sun paradox this hypothesis basically says that the atmosphere would have maintained an environment to hold life even though the sun was weaker back then. This hypothesis has spiritual implications and is often criticized by scientists. However, it does seem to make some sense when it comes to the complexity of earth’s environment in relation to the faint sun paradox.

Support For Young Earth Creation:

https://creation.com/young-sun-paradox

https://creation.com/the-young-faint-sun-paradox-and-the-age-of-the-solar-system

https://answersingenesis.org/astronomy/sun/4-faint-sun-paradox/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pTvpCyqajZQ

Support for an Old Earth

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faint_young_Sun_paradox

http://www.oldearth.org/rebuttal/magazines/TJ/v15/TJ15_faint_young_sun_paradox.htm (Christian Site)

http://www.oldearth.org/rebuttal/magazines/Creation/2004/article_v26_i3_steady_sun.htm (Christian Site)

http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CE/CE311.html

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-solar.html#_Toc430357878

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2011RG000375/pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYd1aaoEK-Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbnaes8X4iQ

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2011RG000375/pdf

References:

Faulkner, D.R. (1980), The young faint Sun paradox and the age of the solar systemImpact (ICR) 300.

Neymand, Greg; (2010, April 5) Creation Science Rebuttals. Old Earth Ministries. Retrieved from http://www.oldearth.org/rebuttal/magazines/TJ/v15/TJ15_faint_young_sun_paradox.htm

Rathi A, (2016, May 25). A New Theory is Close to Solving one of the greatest mysteries of how life began on earth. Retrieved from https://qz.com/691200/a-new-theory-is-close-to-solving-one-of-the-greatest-mysteries-of-how-life-began-on-earth/

Schopf, J. W. (2006), Fossil evidence for Archaean life, Philos. Trans. R. Soc. B, 361, 869–885.

Wikipedia 1, (2017, September 10). Faint Young Sun Paradox. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faint_young_Sun_paradox

Wikipedia 2, (2017, September 10). Gaia Hypothesis. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaia_hypothesis.

Wilde, S. A., J. W. Valley, W. H. Peck, and C. M. Graham (2001), Evidence from detrital zircons for the existence of continental crust and oceans on the Earth 4.4 Gyr ago, Nature, 409, 175–178

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