Radio Carbon: Is it Reliable?

Radiocarbon Dating: Is It Reliable?

Before we delve into the study of angels, I would like to discuss radiocarbon-14 Dating and its good points and flaws. The upcoming study will cover thousands of years and the dates are important as you will soon see in the series. Carbon dating can be accurate to a degree, but scientists have determined that is generally not practical to measure ages greater than 20,000 years. This is due to radioactivity of the carbon becomes so insignificant that it is very difficult to acquire an accurate measurement (Weber, 1982).

Some of the reasons that cause problems with radiocarbon-14 dating start with the assumption that the amount of carbon-14 kept a constant rate. This assumption was made in error because factors such as Earth’s magnetic field is weaker now and fluctuates, the Genesis flood, contamination from outside sources, above-ground radiation, carbon in the atmosphere, and faulty assessments (Weber, 1982; Callaway, 2012).

Ben Panko (2016) and Malcolm W. Brown (1990) agree that radiocarbon-14 is in jeopardy because of all the chances of errors. Errors were found as much as 3,500 years. However, a better method created by Japanese scientists promises to eliminate the current problems. Does the current method of dating disprove the Bible? Not a chance, because the Bible has never proved to be wrong. Carbon dating has proven a young Earth existed in the days of Enoch and Job. Using the Bible as a guide, archeologists have discovered lost cities thought to be myths and carbon dated to the correct era. 

“Today, the amount of carbon dioxide humans are pumping into Earth’s atmosphere is threatening to skew the accuracy of this technique for future archaeologists looking at our own time. That’s because fossil fuels can shift the radiocarbon age of new organic materials today, making them hard to distinguish from ancient ones” (Panko, 2016).

In conclusion, biblical records were written by people who were alive at that time and other ancient sources support those records. Although radiocarbon-14 dating is accurate to a point, errors as much as 3,500 years were found. There is research being conducted on radiocarbon-13 for better accuracy as well as a new method by Japanese scientists,


Brown, Malcolm W. (1990). Errors are feared in carbon dating. New York Times. (Author reports on interviews with several scientists concerning carbon dating accuracy).

Callaway, Ewen. (2012). Carbon dating gets reset. Scientific American. Flaws are discussed about carbon dating and how a new method developed by Japanese scientists will be more accurate.

Panko, Ben. (2016). Thanks to carbon fuels, carbon dating is in jeopardy . . . Smithsonian. Author discusses causes of carbon dating errors and how a new method of dating may solve the problem of accuracy. 

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