Re: Four Rivers Revisited
Sat, 1 May 1999 03:16:11 EDT

Allen wrote,

<< The correlations between sections of tree rings is done by statsitical
analysis assisted by C14 dating of the sections. Thus, any inflation in
C14 dating is transferred to dendrochronology. >>

Wait a minute. The tree rings are almost always annual rings which can be
counted. This is very concrete. Also, the problems of matching the rings
from one tree to another are minor. With rare exception, the rings form a
clear concrete sequence back to 9300 BC at least. C-14 dating has been
correlated with and confirmed by dating this sequence of rings. See M.
Stuiver and P. J. Reimer, "A computer program for radiocarbon age
calibration," Radiocarbon 28/2 B (1986) 1022-30 and the excited praise of two
scholars who are aware of C-14's early problems: Fekri A. Hassan & Steven W.
Robinson, "High Precision Radiocarbon Chronometry of Ancient Egypt, and
comparisons with Nubia, Palestine and Mesopotamia," Antiquity 61 (1987) 130.

The validation of the essential validity of C-14 dating from dendrochronolgy
is so solid that Dr. Gerald Aardsma, a nuclear physicist, a specialist in
C-14 dating and a one-time teacher for the Creation Science Institute, came
to the conclusion that since C-14 dating according to creation science theory
could only be valid after the Flood, the Flood must have occurred prior to
9300 BC. His expertise combined with his clinging to basic creation science
theory, yet still losing his job tells me that his understanding of this
issue is too fact-informed for either himself or the Creation Science
Institute to get around. As Aardsma said to a believer in the validity of
the genealogically derived dates who implied that the confirmation of C-14
dating by dendrochronology was just tentative,

"The tree ring/radiocarbon data are not tentative; the tree rings really
exist (in excess of 10,000 of them, one after the other), and the
concentrations of radiocarbon in these rings will not be different tomorrow
than it was measured to be yesterday. These data will not vanish."
(Gerald Aardsma, "Tree Ring dating and Multiple Ring Growth Per Year," CRSQ
29 (Mar, 1993) 184-89; CRSQ 30 (Dec, 1993) 127-30)

Although the tree-ring sequence does show, as you say, that the dates are
inflated; it is important to admit that they are *systematically* inflated;
so that the validity of C-14 dating is not in doubt. The C-14 dates simply
have to be calibrated with the tree ring sequence to be true dates.

The validity of C-14 dating was not accepted even in the non-Christian
community of scientists and historians without being subjected to serious
scrutiny. The fact that it has been accepted by virtually all non-Christians,
the great majority of Christian scientists and historians including most
scholarly Evangelicals such as Edwin Yamauchi and now even by a professor
from the heartland of creation science tells me that it has a very firm
foundation in fact.

Unless you can offer facts which falsify (not just propagandistically and
rhetorically throw doubt upon) the validation of C-14 dating by
dendrochronolgy, I think you must face making the same kind of decision that
Aardsma made about the date of the Flood.