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Chronology and dating

Biblical information
• No AD and BC (absolute dates)
• Relative dating; 1 Kings 14:21
How many years passed
from the death of king Ahab
to the ascension of Jehu son of
Nimshi on the throne at
Samaria?
Ahaziah starts

Ahab dies

Jehoram (Israel) starts Ahaziah dies

Hence: at least 12 years 12 years: 2 Kings 3:1

Jehu kills Jehoram and ascends the throne
I [Shalmaneser III, Emperor of Assyria] approached Karkar. I destroyed, tore down,
and bound Karkara, the king of Hamath’s royal residence. He brought along to help
him 1200 chariots, 1200 cavalrymen, 20,000 foot soldiers belonging to
[Benhadad I] of Damascus, ..., 2000 chariots, 10,000 foot soldiers belonging to
Ahab the Israelite.” – Kirkuk Stele. From Assyrian eponyms: 853 BC

“I, [Shalmaneser III, Emperor of Assyria] exacted tribute
from Jehu….” – Black Obelisk 841 BC
12 years!
Ahaziah starts

Ahab resists Shalmaneser III (853)
Ahab dies

Jehoram (Israel) starts Ahaziah dies

Only 12 years!

Hence: at least 12 years 12 years: 2 Kings 3:1

Jehu kills Jehoram and ascends the throne
Jehu gives tribute to Shalmaneser III (841)

Conclusion: Ahab’s death in 853; Jehu began reign in 841
The fall of Samaria
“On the twenty-fifth day of the month of Tebet
Shalmaneser (V) ascended the throne in Assyria
and Babylonia. He ravaged Samaria.” –
Babylonian Chronicles I.i.28

“At the beginning of my royal rule, I…the
town of the Samarians I besieged,
conquered (2 Lines destroyed) [for the
god…] who let me achieve this my triumph…
I led away as prisoners [27,290 inhabitants
of it (and) equipped from among them
(soldiers to man)] 50 chariots for my royal
corps… The town I rebuilt better than it was
before and settled therein people from
countries which I had conquered.” – A.G. Lie,
The inscriptions of Sargon II, King of Assyria,
Part 1

2 Kings 17:1-6, 24

From the eponyms: 722 BC
Babylonian Chronicles
Jerusalem Chronicle
Number ABC -5
"The king of Babylon [Nebuchadnezzar]
mustered his troops, marching towards
the land of the Hittites, and encamped
against the city of Judah...besieged the
city and captured the king. He appointed
there a king of his own choice,
received its heavy tribute and
sent the citizens to Babylon” – 597 BC

2 Kings 24:11-12, 16-17

Hence, Jehoiachin’s reign ended in 597 BC
Problems
• Rounding off
• Coregencies
Synchronization
Jehoiakim begins reign: 609 BC

4 years: Jeremiah 46:2

Battle of Carchemish: 605 BC
12 years: 2 Ki 23:36 Agrees with Babylonian chronicles

Jehoiakim ends reign: 597 BC
Let’s calculate some dates
• Ahab • 22
• Omri • 6
• Zimri • 0
• Elah • 2
• Baasha • 24
• Nadab • 2
• Jeroboam • 22
• Total:- • 78

Conclusion: Kingdom divided in 853 + 78 = 931 BC
Approximate Dates
Person/Event Date (BC)
Esther 500
David 1000
Moses 1500
Abraham 2000
Noah’s Flood 2400
Creation 4000

According to the Bible, the world/universe began only 6000 years ago!
A Big Disagreement

Biblical time frames v/s secular

6000 years v/s 14 billion years or
4.5 billion years
Secular dating
For uniform rates

Initial amount – Final amount
Time = ______________________________________________________

Rate
Radioactivity

Uranium Lead
Radioactivity

Half-life T of a material can be measured once and for all
Hence if present amount A and initial amount A0 are known,
The time t can be found.
Assumptions
• There was no contamination
• We know the initial amount
• The decay “constant” (or half-life) truly
remained constant (uniformitarianism)
• We know the decay constant accurately for
large extrapolation
Mt Ngauruhow, New Zealand erupted on June 30, 1954

Samples given to Geochron Laboratories in Cambridge, Boston (USA),
for whole-rock potassium-argon (K–Ar) dating

Results: rocks were dated between 0.27 and 3.5 million years old
Radio halos
Radio halos
• Tracks left by alpha particles
• Abundance of radio halos shows that billions
of years “worth” of radioactive decay has
taken place
Zircons
• Helium (alpha particles) retention in zircons
unexpectedly high
• Suggests that at some time in the past, the
decay took place at an accelerated rate
Feldspar
• Argon (K-Ar) retention in feldspars
unexpectedly high
• Suggests accelerated decay
What causes accelerated decay?
• Very high temperature
• Atom is stripped of electrons while decaying
Conclusions: radioactive dating
• It involves unverifiable assumptions
• Radio halos show that “billions of years
worth” decay has taken place
• But helium retention shows that this decay did
not take place over billions of years but only
thousands of years
• Therefore, radioactive decay should not be
used to discredit Biblical chronology
Starlight and time
• Starlight from more than 6000 light-years
away is reaching the earth
• Einstein’s theory of general relativity: time is
relative
• Genesis 1 is written from the earth frame
• Billions of years could have elapsed as seen
from other stars
Evidence for a young earth
Galaxies
Still spiral
Too few
Supernova
remnants
Too many comets still left
Not enough salt in the sea
Earth’s magnetic field is still too strong
Moon still near us:
It is receding at the rate of 1 mile every 42,000 years