Chronology is the study of time, or a record of events in the order of their occurrence (timeline). As a scientific endeavor, it is an attempt to determine the temporal sequence of historic events. Chronologists determine the dates of events and then arrange them in the order in which they occurred. A chronology or timeline may be either determined by relative dating (sequencing events relative to each other), or absolute dating (sequencing events by determining specific dates).
- Main Article: Geochronology
Geochronology is the study of the relationship between the history of the Earth and time. It is from this field of study that artifacts are dated based on the age of the geological formations in which they are located. Geologists determine the age of rocks, fossils, and sediments using a variety of methods including relative and absolute dating.
In dating any object, geologists:
- Observes the present state of the system.
- Measure a process rate with in the system.
- Assume certain things about the past.
- Calculate the time necessary from that process to produce present state.
- Main Article: Cosmic chronology
Cosmic chronology is an attempt to determine the sequence of events that occurred during the formation of the cosmos. Scientists determine the dates of events (such as the Big Bang, the formation of stars, galaxies and planets), then arranges them in the order in which they occurred. Secular scientists date the universe as being approximately 13.7 billion years using standard cosmologies. The universe is believed to have begun with a cosmic inflation known as the Big Bang, which is then followed by the formation of stars and then galaxies and planets. Based on this chronology the Earth is believed to have formed after our Sun and is dated to be near 4.6 billion years old. This theoretic timeline as put forth by secular scientists is in stark contrast with the Biblical description of the creation, which states that the Earth was created on the first day of creation but the sun, moon, and stars were not created until the fourth day.
- Main Article: Biblical chronology
Biblical chronology is the order and timing of events recorded in the Old Testament and New Testament. The Bible is remarkably detailed in its chronology, giving precise dates and years for many important events and Biblical genealogies, for the events spanning from the first day of Creation to the death of Joseph. The post-biblical chronology from Jesus to the present day is also easily available from the European historical record.
- Wright, Edward L. "Age of the Universe." Department of Astronomy, University of California at Los Angeles, July 2, 2005. Accessed August 18, 2008.