The Bible doesn't say a word about death existing in the universe OR sin for that matter except for this earth and Satan's fall somewhat before that. To assume that death existed before this earth is making a gigantic assumption that is not biblical at all. There is not the least biblical support for such a notion.
In terms of the tree of life, an easy explanation would be that as long as you ate of the tree of life, you would never degenerate/die, etc. It is never spoken of as something where you eat it only once and you live forever. And there are other explanations as well.
The Bible is clear on creation and on a young earth in many places. It never once anywhere hints at millions of years. Such a thing is not even mentioned in regard to the earth anywhere. It is just popular notions trying to act biblical when in fact they are not just like spontaneous generation did in past centuries when in reality that pseudo scientific concept which was supported by most great scientists we now know to be false.
The ages of the earth methods have so many faulty assumptions and are founded on serious logical fallacies, so many that many have called them fairy tales. You can arbitrarily set up the calculations and the scale and calibrations to prove any theory you want. This is ESPECIALLY easy to do when you have nothing that we 100% KNOW is say 5 million years old to test against. And since you have nothing to test it against to check it's veracity, that is pretty much a defacto proof that this is not a scientific pursuit. It's just making up 1 fairy tale and then another and calibrating them just right so that they appear to match (after MUCH trial and error and adjustments) the theory you like. This can be done on BOTH the evolutionist and creationist side without much difficulty. To be solid science, you need to have something of a CERTAIN age to test it against..and that's just impossible for most things over a few thousand years ago.
Is it coincidence that Genesis makes it pretty clear that life has existed only for a few thousand years and that historical records of human beings go back only a few thousand years in genuine accurate historical cases (not myths)? I think not.
Here's an excerpt of an article on dating I wrote to show how numbers can be cherry picked by any side to support their worldview (sorry can't post pictures here):
Evolutionists and Creationists Claim to Know the Age of the Earth-But, Both Are Only Guessing. In dating the earth. Evolutionists say the earth is millions of years old. Most Christian traditions say that the world is about ~10,000 years old (the Bible says nothing specific about the earth's age, but makes it pretty clear that life has only existed for a few thousand years at most). What does science show us?
Enewetak coral reef is one of the largest reefs in the world and a favorite example used by old earth evolutionists and creationists. It's about 1,405 meters thick. Evolutionists say that this proves the world is millions of years old and many have ridiculed anyone who believes this reef could be formed in a short time. But, here is the real scientific data.
FACT: The Enewetak reef is about 1405 m thick
FACT: Observed growth rates range from .5cm (=5mm/year) to 414mm/year with many in the 100-200mm range.
1405m = 1,405,000mm
5mm/year rate =281,000 years estimated coral age
50mm/year rate =28,100 years estimated coral age
100mm/year rate =14,050 years estimated coral age
200mm/year rate =7,025 years estimated coral age
300mm/year rate =4,683 years estimated coral age
414mm/year rate =3,393 years estimated coral age
These are ONLY the observed rates. There may be faster and slower rates that haven't been observed. In 1992, this coral in the picture at right was found on a shoe that was less than 4 years old. This shows that coral growth can sometimes be extremely fast.
Which rate happened at Enewetak? Nobody has been watching and measuring the Ewenetak coral reef for 1000s of years, so we don't know. Science can only say what might have happened. Skeptics choose the 5mm rate. Creationists choose the 200-400 rates. Both are using a lot of faith. It does seem logical to match the fast rates with the thickest corals on the planet, but this is just a logical guess. Both creationists and evolutionists are using an enormous amount of faith whenever they proclaim that they know the age of the earth from science. Since it's not possible to recreate or observe the rates of change in the past (and many other assumptions as well) it is exceedingly difficult at present to prove from science to any degree of certainty the age of the earth.
Here are some other links showing that decay rates can be billions of times faster than most evolutionary scientists admit:
A new RATE project by many scientists...proves that decay rates in the past can be billions of times faster than currently
Pictures of those planes found in 250 feet of ice in only 50 years (showing that the famous ice cores are not necessarily millions of years old) are at:
Here are a few quotes on this as well:
Examples of where uniformitarian dating has been shown to be wrong:
1. Radiometric dating of fossil skull 1470 show that the various methods do not give accurate measurements of ages. The first tests gave an age of 221 million years. The second, 2.4 million years. Subsequent tests gave ages which ranged from 290,000 to 19.5 million years. Palaeomagnetic determinations gave an age of 3 million years. All these readings give a 762 fold error in the age calculations. Given that only errors less than 10% (0.1 fold) are acceptable in scientific calculations, these readings show that radiometric assessment should never ever be used. John Reader, "Missing Links", BCA/Collins: London, 1981 p:206-209
2. William D. Stansfield, Ph.D. (animal breeding) (Instructor of Biology, California Polytechnic State University) in-The Science of Evolution, Macmillan, New York, 1977, p. 80.-"Certain fossils appear to be restricted to rocks of a relatively limited geological age span. These are called 'index fossils'. Whenever a rock is found bearing such a fossil, its approximate age is automatically established. This method is not foolproof. Occasionally an organism, previously thought to be extinct, is found to be extant. Such 'living fossils' obviously cannot function as index fossils except within the broader time span of their known existence."
pp. 82 and 84.-"It is obvious that radiometric techniques may not be the absolute dating methods that they are claimed to be. Age estimates on a given geological stratum by different radiometric methods are often quite different (sometimes by hundreds of millions of years). There is no absolutely reliable long term radiological 'clock'. The uncertainties inherent in radiometric dating are disturbing to geologists and evolutionists..."
3. In the light of what is known about the radiocarbon method and the way it is used, it is truly astonishing that many authors will cite agreeable determinations as 'proof' for their beliefs. The radiocarbon method is still not capable of yielding accurate and reliable results. There are gross discrepancies, the chronology is uneven and relative, and the accepted dates are actually selected dates. "This whole blessed thing is nothing but 13th century alchemy, and it all depends upon which funny paper you read." Written by Robert E. Lee in his article "Radiocarbon: Ages in Error" in Anthropological Journal Of Canada, Vol. 19, No. 3, 1981 p:9
DATES THAT DON'T MATCH THE THEORY OR DISCARDED
4. Hayatsu (Department of Geophysics, University of Western Ontario, Canada), "K-Ar isochron age of the North Mountain Basalt, Nova Scotia",-Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, vol. 16, 1979,-"In conventional interpretation of K-Ar (potassium/argon dating method) age data, it is common to discard ages which are substantially too high or too low compared with the rest of the group or with other available data such as the geological time scale. The discrepancies between the rejected and the accepted are arbitrarily-attributed to excess or loss of argon." In other words the potassium/argon (K/Ar) method doesn't support the uranium/lead (U/Pb) method.
5. Richard L. Mauger, Ph.D. (Associate Professor of Geology, East Carolina University, USA), Contributions to Geology, University of Wyoming, vol. 15 (1), 1977, p. 37.-"In general, dates in the 'correct ball park' are assumed to be correct and are published, but those in disagreement with other data are seldom published nor are discrepancies fully explained."
6. Different radioactive dating methods used on volcanic rock samples from Reunion Island (Indian Ocean) gave conflicting results that varied from 100,000 to 4.4 billion years. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Vol. 35, 1971 p:261-288 & Vol. 36, 1972 p:1167
7. Some man-made items recovered from coal seams include:- (a) a gold chain , (b) an iron thimble , (c) a drill bit or borer , (d) coins , (e) a cuboid-shaped tool , and (f) a carved stone plate bearing the image of a man's face. These discoveries have never been widely announced, as they contradict the evolutionary time-frames for rock formation and human evolution.
(a) Morrisonville Times, June 11, 1891; (b) American Antiquarian, Vol. 5, 1883; (c) Proceedings of the Society of Antiquarians of Scotland, Vol. 1, Part 2, 1853; (d) Strand Magazine, Vol. 21, 1901; (e) INFO Journal, Autumn, 1967; (f) The Daily Bee Newspaper, April 3, 1897
8. In 1968 scientists dated the rocks of a Hawaiian volcano called Hualalai, using Potassium/Argon radiometric techniques. They knew that the volcano had erupted in 1800 and that the rocks were around 170 years old, but the ages they determined ranged from 160 million to 3 billion. This method of dating rocks obviously produces erroneous ages, and should not be used to factually age the earth and its geology. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 73, No. 14, 1968 p:4601-4607
9. Radiometric dating of fossil skull 1470 show that the various methods do not give accurate measurements of ages. The first tests gave an age of 221 million years. The second, 2.4 million years. Subsequent tests gave ages which ranged from 290,000 to 19.5 million years. Palaeomagnetic determinations gave an age of 3 million years. All these readings give a 762 fold error in the age calculations. Given that only errors less than 10% (0.1 fold) are acceptable in scientific calculations, these readings show that radiometric assessment should never ever be used. John Reader, "Missing Links", BCA/Collins: London, 1981 p:206-209
10. A metal hammer, with its fossilized wooden handle, has been found in sandstone at Paluxy River (Texas, USA). The sandstone has been dated as being 400 million years old. This is 399 million years before the first human is supposed to have evolved. Also found inside rock has been a pair of pliers, a bolt, and a set of car keys. Creation Ex Nihilo, Vol. 6, No. 3, 1984 p:16; Creation Ex Nihilo, Vol. 14, No. 1, 1992 p:20; Creation Ex Nihilo, Vol. 8, No. 3, 1986 p:10; Creation Ex Nihilo, Vol. 17, No. 1, 1995 p:45 [photographs included]