Age of Rocks and the Rock of Ages
Updated: Oct 2, 2022
"For who is God, except the Lord?
And who is a rock, except our God?
The Lord lives!
Blessed be my Rock!
Let the God of my salvation be exalted." Psalm 18: 31 & 46
The old hymn refers to God as the Rock of Ages. Why is God referred to as a rock in the Bible and by hymn writers? Well, it likely is a reference to one of the most enduring things that man can point to. Rocks seem to last forever, especially big ones like Half Dome or El Capitan. They are heavy, immovable, and change very little in our life time or even since the time of our great-great-grandparents.
Now, we know that is not exactly true and rocks are constantly in the process of eroding and, like everything else in creation, they are in a state of entropy and decay. But, when the psalmist was searching for an example of what God's eternal nature is like, a rock was the best fit he could come up with.
Are rocks eternal? Well, some would put ages to them that seem to be eternal.
However, Genesis teaches that the world was created (including rocks) approximately 6,500 years ago and then a global flood occurred approximately 4,500 years ago that re-formed much of the earth's geology and rocks. (Metamorphic rocks may have been almost exclusively a product of the flood and associated geologic upheaval.) But, some might state, I thought geologists have proven rocks are millions, if not billions, of years old using reliable scientific methodologies. While the methods being used may be scientifically reliable and proven, the problem is not in the methodology - it is sound - but in the assumptions behind the methodology. These assumptions are based on unverifiable conditions of what the rocks were like when they were formed. For example, it is assumed, when igneous (volcanic derived) rocks were formed, there were only parent radioactive isotopes present in them and no daughter (or decayed) radioactive isotopes. Since we know how long it takes for a parent isotope to decay into a daughter isotope (sometimes referred to as a half-life), by observing the current number of parent and daughter isotopes, we can then calculate using the rate of decay the age of the rock. But, were there only parent isotopes present when that rock was formed? No one knows for sure because no one was present to count the number of parent and daughter isotopes. When I look at all the world and universe God created, I see that He formed everything in a mature state. Wouldn't He have also done the same with rocks with a balance of parent and daughter isotopes? Watch the following video for a quick summary of this process.
Unlike rocks, our God is eternal. He does not change. He had no parent isotopes. He is not decaying. But, since He is the only one or thing that is eternal, we really don't have anything to compare Him to. So, I guess a really big, immovable rock is not a bad place to start. Remember, even those rocks will melt some day (2 Peter 3:10-12), but their creator will never change.
Our world needs more Christian geologists (and other scientists) who can view the world and science through the lens of scripture and the truths in God's Word. I recently had an opportunity to interview Christian geologist Dr. Andrew Snelling (one of my heroes) for our Creation Club. He had some very insightful things to tell the club members and I thought you too would enjoy hearing what he had to say.