The age of the earth has been an issue ever since the early 1800s. Once man developed theories of long ages, more and more people question the truth of Scripture or they compromise the Bible to make it fit with those theories. One of the areas that cause many to question Scripture is geology and features such as the Grand Canyon. For instance, take the comment we received from one person concerning the Grand Canyon, the age of the Earth and believing the Bible.
From: Nils J
I have traveled down the Grand Canyon numerous time over the last 20 years. To suggest that the canyon is young disregards too many facts supporting its great age. For one, the cliffs themselves could not stand vertical if they were recently eroded. If they were soft enough to erode rapidly, then their internal soil properties would not be strong enough to permit vertical slopes. They would have slumped into the canyon. Next, as you travel down the canyon you pass through a region that was blocked by volcanic eruptions. These lava dams blocked the river for thousands of years until they were either cut through or if the adjacent rock were softer, the river cut around the dam. This is solid rock that now stands upwards to 100 feet high. I don’t know why I bother to point these things out because I am sure they are not believed by anyone whose faith has already decided how the canyon was formed and any facts such as those I relate must be irrelevant. However, for some of those reading this, it may be of some comfort to know that many Christians can accept the older ages of the canyon and still believe in God and His creation which appears to be billions of years old when all the facts are considered.
Nils, I lived in Arizona for over 35 years and have also had the great pleasure of hiking in and out of the Grand Canyon three different times. While you may have seen evidences for long ages, I saw evidences for young ages and a rapid formation of the rock layers and the cutting of the Canyon.
To begin with, it doesn’t take thousands of years for layers of sediment to fully harden into rock. There are numerous examples of solid rock forming in less than a one hundred years and even less than a year. Do a search on creation.com for ‘rapid rock’ and read through the examples.
When I worked for another creation ministry, I was contacted by a geologist that works in the oil and natural gas industry. He sent me a section of pipe from one of the natural gas wells that had been virtually clogged by the formation of limestone inside the pipe. The limestone deposit was similar to some limestones found in nature and it formed in only three months. You can see a photo of the pipe and read more about it at That choking feeling …
I recall the time I hiked down into the Grand Canyon from the North Rim and stopped to look at some of the various rock layers. Some of them were many feet thick and showed little signs of any fine laminar layers. They seemed to be composed of one solid thick layer. If they had been laid down over millions of years, there would have been more evidence of the different layers, but there weren’t.
Another thing that struck me was the sheer cliff walls throughout the Canyon. If the Grand Canyon were millions of years old, there would have been a lot more wind and rain erosion resulting in lesser defined vertical cliffs and a great deal more debris at their bases and in the bottom of the Canyon.
Since that time, I’ve also seen various examples of rapid water erosion of solid rock. In one instance 30-40 was cut out of solid rock in a manner of a couple of hours when large amounts of water was released from a dam. The process is known as cavitation and it has been well documented as a process that can rapidly cut through solid rock.
One interesting thing I have noticed over the years is the time frame the evolutionists have placed on the formation of the Grand Canyon. It used to be over 50 million years, then it dropped to 20 million, then 10 million and now it seems to range somewhere between 1 – 5 million years. The more they study the Grand Canyon the younger it keeps getting. When you consider it went from 50 million to 5 million or less, that’s a 1000% decrease in age, which has to make one seriously question the accuracy of any of their figures.
More importantly is your statement about being able to believe in billions of years and still believe in God. Yes, you can, but whether you realize it or not, in order to do so you have to drastically compromise the Word of God. Billions of years totally undermine the message of the Cross and nullifies the birth, life, teachings, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The entire Gospel message rests upon the fact that through one man Adam, sin entered the world and only through one man, Jesus, can there be true atonement for sin. The Bible is clear that the result of sin is death. In other words, there was no death prior to Adam’s sin.
Rather than spending a couple more pages explaining what I am trying to say, I recommend you check out the following articles and hopefully you will come to understand that billions of years cannot fit into the Bible in any way, shape or form.
The answer to this question strikes at the very heart of the accuracy of the Bible. Due in large part to the influence of Enlightenment thinking, no part of Scripture has been under greater scrutiny than the first three chapters of Genesis. In this significant and needed work, Dr. Joseph Pipa and Dr. David Hall present a collection of essays designed to further an accurate understanding of the six days of Creation. Literal and non-literal views are presented, defended, and critically examined. You will come away from this book challenged and better informed of all views in this important debate.