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I think it's obvious by when the day-age position began to be popular that it was a direct result of the long ages assertion as required by evolution. This means people are trying to reconcile an inherently atheistic position with the Bible, and as such are taking man's ideas as being of greater authority than God's Word.
Sir Charles Lyell played a pivotal role in putting a seemingly-scientific face on the long ages assertion. In doing so he asserted at least one flat out lie: he discarded decades of local observation of the erosion rate of Niagara Falls being in excess of three feet per year and instead picked one foot per year, which would make the falls about 35,000 years old. This was in keeping with his well documented intention of making the Biblical timeline appear scientifically impossible.
<a href="http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v22/i4/niagara_falls.asp" title="http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v22/i4/niagara_falls.asp">http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v22/i4/niagara_falls.asp</a>
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