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What is the Difference Between AD, BC, BCE, and CE in Identifying Historical Dates?

Michael Pollick
Updated May 23, 2024
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In one respect, there really is no difference between an AD/BC and BCE/CE system when it comes to historical dates. The year 23 AD is exactly the same as the year 23 CE, and 4004 BC is also 4004 BCE. References to historical dates under either classification shouldn't create confusion in a researcher's mind. Major historical dates such as 1492 AD, 1776 AD or 1941 AD would still be rendered as 1492 CE, 1776 CE and 1941 CE.

The AD/BC method of identifying historical dates can be traced back to Catholic historians working in the early Middle Ages. Identifying historical dates until that point was often a complicated proposition, since different historians worked under different calendars. A Roman historian would have used the Roman AUD notation, in which Year Zero was the largely symbolic founding of Rome. Converting historical dates to the standard Gregorian calendar would not have been easy. Using the birth of Jesus Christ as a central point made more sense to the religious historians.

The term BC is short for "Before Christ." Historical dates before the birth of Christ become smaller as they approach the theoretical but non-existent Year Zero. Historical dates after the birth of Christ are classified as AD, short for the Latin phrase Anno Domini, or "in the year of our Lord." Contrary to popular belief, AD does not stand for "After Death." The BC/AD system for identifying historical dates has been in continuous use ever since the earliest part of the Middle Ages, at least.

Several centuries after the AD/BC identification of historical dates became popular, a new movement developed among scientists, historians and some religious leaders. The time following the birth of Christ was now referred to as the "Vulgar Era" in some circles. The meaning of the word vulgar actually meant 'common' at that time, not distasteful or obscene. Eventually many areas of the Western world adopted the less Christ-centered term "Common Era." Historical dates occurring before the year 1 CE would be considered BCE, short for "Before Common Era."

The relatively new BCE/CE reference for historical dates has had its share of supporters and critics. Critics view the new system as an attempt to remove the religious significance inherent in the BC/AD system. The BCE/CE method of assigning historical dates also fails to fix the BC/AD system's lack of a practical Year Zero. Modern scholars believe the actual birth of Christ would fall around 7 to 4 BC, which renders the actual year of 1 AD relatively meaningless historically.

Supporters of the BCE/CE method of identifying historical dates say the removal of Christian references works as a bridge between different religions and cultures. The BC/AD system appears to endorse Jesus Christ as the superior world religious figure, which could be viewed as disrespectful of other religions and belief structures. Although the birth of Christ is still used as a reference in the BCE/CE system, the Christian influence is not as apparent.

Some have argued that the religious significance of the BC/AD method has already been largely forgotten, so the need for change is not readily apparent. The use of BCE/CE is still quite limited, although some experts see it becoming the dominant means of identifying historical dates within a century or two.

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Michael Pollick
By Michael Pollick , Writer
As a frequent contributor to Historical Index, Michael Pollick uses his passion for research and writing to cover a wide range of topics. His curiosity drives him to study subjects in-depth, resulting in informative and engaging articles. Prior to becoming a professional writer, Michael honed his skills as an English tutor, poet, voice-over artist, and DJ.

Discussion Comments

By anon1006790 — On May 22, 2022

Changing BC To BCE, or AD to CE, doesn’t make the existence of Christ not so. Whether you believe in God and Christ or not, doesn’t make their existence not so. Can you deny the fact that you’ve questioned the existence of a higher power and whether God exists? Do you want to know why that is? Because God gave us a conscience. Have you ever asked the question what makes us inherently understand right from wrong? If we came from nothing (it's scientifically impossible for something to come from nothing), how does one explain the conscience? Wouldn’t we be a more like a void without any feelings of love, remorse, or fear? The general laws of God are written on everyone's heart. Our conscience works with this law and you cannot escape it.

By anon1002027 — On Aug 21, 2019

Who cares? Religion was created to control the masses. There is no God.

By anon999368 — On Dec 19, 2017

I don't get it. Why fight over such a stupid thing? I could care less which thing we use, but seriously, if you are Christian, use BC/AD. If you are not Christian, and whine about BC/AD being too Christian, then use BCE/CE.

By anon997598 — On Jan 31, 2017

It will always be BC and AD. I don't care about Christianity and sure as hell don't care about Islam. But if you can't handle BC and AD, I suggest you get out of America. God Bless America and no place else.

By anon997487 — On Jan 16, 2017

You anti-religious people will keep chipping away at Judeo-Christian values until they are gone. Think this one through genius. Many religious people do the right thing when no one is watching because they know God is watching. How terrible and violent will every day be when everyone around you no longer cares about anything or you.

By anon996261 — On Aug 01, 2016

Seems to be an awful lot of unrelated posting on here. I don't think this article really warrants this much tangential rhetoric at all. I can't remember a time where this has ever been a contentious subject in my life and would seriously question the impact it really has on anyone.

To those who are not religious, you already think Christianity and other such beliefs unfounded and are aware of the futility of convincing a person of faith that there views are misguided.

To those religious readers, you are already aware of the folly of the unbeliever and would preach that, while you hope to welcome then into salvation, free will is bestowed from above and personal opinion is between yourself and your maker.

Ever so simply put, no god demands individuals to enforce their will on their fellow people and no person should feel impelled to behave thus as they ultimately know no better than the next person.

A common point of reference is the point of a calendar and as long as you are understood by another when using either, then it has served its purpose. To use this as a platform for aggressive argument and small-minded opinion sharing is tedious and wasteful. I appreciate the slight hypocrisy of this post but was looking up interesting facts of history and was quite surprised at the general content of this discussion and felt the rare need to compel people to reconsider posting more irrelevant nonsense. Happy surfing.

By anon996040 — On Jun 30, 2016

Don't care about American media etc.; anti-Christianity is global. It's a shame that we as a race of people feel the need to replace something that gives millions if not billions hope and love with something that takes that away from people.

BCE/BC and AD/C, it doesn't really matter, as you have stated. Why try and fix something that has never faulted or has passed into history?

By anon995284 — On Apr 17, 2016

The year 0 is irrelevant and nonexistent in the ordinal year system that has been used. Ordinal numbers start with first, second, third -- not 1, 2, 3. There is no such word or meaning for zeroth.

In theory, immediately after the birth of Christ, it became 1AD, our the first year of our Lord. That we humans messed up and couldn't figure out his birthday and year makes us more human. As an aside, because we use ordinal years in our date system, the third millennium and the twenty first century didn't begin until 1/1/2001.

By anon990571 — On Apr 28, 2015

Keeping track of the years is just a scam that's been fed to us hook, line, and sinker by big calendar maker businesses.

Why don't we just go with real time and say it's the year 4.54 billion in the year of our earth.

By anon990449 — On Apr 22, 2015

BC should stay without a doubt, as Jesus Christ is who he said he was, the Son of God. It's a very sad shame that many do not understand this. The world would be 10 times more peaceful place if we all followed his word. However, when he returns he will set things straight.

By anon990358 — On Apr 17, 2015

BCE and CE are pc attempts at expunging Christianity from the public realm. Well guess what: I'm expunging their definition of their revisionist terms; BCE and CE stand for "Before the Christian Era" and "Christian Era".

By anon977604 — On Nov 12, 2014

I don't see how BC/AD is offensive to other religions or atheists. It's a sign of the culture of that time and to get rid of it is to ignore that part of history.

I'm a Christian but, am not offended by the religious beliefs of others (except in those countries where Christians are killed because everyone should have the right to believe what they want as long as it is peaceful which Christians have also unfortunately failed at times).

It was discovered a few years ago that most non Africans share a common gene with one early homo sapiens woman who was in one of the first exoduses from Africa. In a nod towards the bible, they named her Eve. Is this wrong? I think other religions have an Adam and Eve too, but will atheists find it offensive?

In my opinion, we need to stop being afraid of offending people and embrace our own cultures and in turn we need to stop being offended and accept other cultures too.

By anon975326 — On Oct 26, 2014

Thanks for the explanation. If I put it into a simpler equation, it would read: CE = AD and BCE = BC. Is that correct?

I do have a follow up question. What did the Jews use to mark the different time periods? Did the BCE and CE originate with the Jews?

By anon967937 — On Aug 30, 2014

In spite of what some of you want to think, everything does not revolve around the United States. BCE and CE are being used all around the world and this change has nothing to do with the United States. The majority of people in the world are not Christian. BC and AD catered to a minority in the world population, with over 5 billion people thinking Christianity is not the way to go.

By anon955895 — On Jun 10, 2014

The United States is 87 percent Christian. That's the biggest grouping of Christians in the world. Where are all of these people we are afraid of offending? Maybe they should go back to their own country or just go away period. As far as I'm concerned, it's a Christmas tree, not a holiday tree. It's Christmas break, not winter break, and I will erect my nativity scene every Christmas and keep my American flag flying in my front yard and pray over supper in a restaurant and sing the national anthem at any kind of game and keep using BC/AD. I've got way more important things to worry about than whether I'm offending someone over something like that. Toughen up, chief. Like it or leave it. In God we trust.

By anon953239 — On May 25, 2014

Funny but I'm the biggest antiquity geek you know. I wear an actual Roman ring to work and am considering an SPQR LEG XIII tattoo. I work in corrections and am thankful to wear chevrons on my collar. Sergeant: one who serves.

Here's my point: Nobody asked me about this stuff. Shouldn't the geeks have a say? Pulling Christ out? Wrong, wrong, wrong.

By anon946408 — On Apr 19, 2014

Is there any atheist whose argument against religion is more sophisticated than "but everyone sins now"?

Common Era is nothing except proof of what idiots the leftist taskmasters have made of people.

And no matter how much they try to comfort themselves with their godlessness, they're still living under the weight of sin and it's obvious. There's a reason atheists have the highest rates of depression, misery and suicide.

By anon924877 — On Jan 08, 2014

The second rule of life states "If it works, don't fix it."

Timing of historical events is measured by how many times a cosmically insignificant rock loops around a non-unique ball of gas in a rather plain galaxy in a big old universe.

It makes sense to pick a point and say "This is where we start counting".

Some historians, way back in the past, did that already, and it's worked for thousands of years.

Just because some people are ticked off be cause they didn't get to name the point, should not be a reason to change everything. Let them go find their own rock and start counting loops whenever they want, and leave the rest of us alone.

As a credit to those early historians, we shall use AD and BC, just as they chose. So speaketh the sane.

By anon358055 — On Dec 09, 2013

@anon50506: You say that "Anyone can be a Christian..." While it is true that anyone can be a Christian, did you ever think that possibly the ones who do that are honestly Christians? The Bible clearly states that we are not to have sexual relations with someone until we are married, that we are not to steal, and that we are not to kill another, so all of the things you said are not Christian.

You can be saved no matter what you have done in the past, but if the person continue to do such things after conversion to Christ, then I personally believe that they aren't currently true Christians.

By anon349977 — On Oct 01, 2013

Why Use BCE and CE Instead of BC and AD?

AD is almost certainly inaccurate — if Jesus existed, he wasn't born in the year suggested. BC and AD give privilege to the role of Christianity in a society where it is no longer the defining belief system.

BC and AD imply the validity or truth of Christian theology — specifically, that Jesus is Lord.

BC and AD force non-Christians to imply or acknowledge the supremacy of Christianity.

AD is awkward to use with centuries as opposed to specific dates — "12th century CE" while "12th century AD" means "12th century in the year of our Lord," which makes little sense.

Opposition to BCE and CE tends to be on religious rather than academic grounds, thus demonstrating that using them involves submitting to a religious agenda.

Perhaps it isn't much, but every time you use BCE and CE instead of BC and AD, you are refusing to submit yourself and your writings to a Christian agenda that is all about asserting dominion over culture, politics, society, and even your very thought processes. Sometimes it is the little things, however, that keep resistance alive and active.

By anon339291 — On Jun 21, 2013

The centuries of acceptance of the method of dating events as occurring either B.C. -before Christ - or A.D. from the year attributed as the year of his birth until the present stand as indisputable verification of the fact that Jesus Christ impacted this world as nothing before or since ever has.

This enrages the arch-enemies of his teachings who have never ceased to foment every kind of blasphemy imaginable often carrying out their evil in his name. Jesus foresaw all that would come to pass and told us "By their fruits, you shall know them".

What they cannot forgive is that Christ taught that we give all love and loyalty to the creator- to God, and not to any worldly institution - which includes any human church, minister, etcetera. Christ never asked that he himself be worshiped and when he said that he alone is the way, the truth, and the light, it is clear to those who care to see that no one who gives the loving God described to us by Jesus, the highest place in their heart, by whatever name they use, would find God's love and mercy closed to them, which continues to be time elapsed since the arrival of a messenger whose divinity was demonstrated so profoundly.

By alexmighty — On Nov 05, 2012

This really is just yet another way to eliminate Christianity from simply perspective in this nation, isn't it? I didn't experience this "B.C.E." factor until my Humanities category last night, and it made me fed up. But I'm not amazed, unfortunately.

This nation was established on Faith and now we are trying to eliminate any symptoms and symptoms of it. I wish it wasn't occurring, but it is. Gradually, but absolutely. God has blessed the United States, and we in the United States need to bless God now. I believe the phrase BCE is just another way to take Jesus out of the community.

I first experienced this acronym from my child's community university adviser, and I had to look it up it to discover the meaning of it.

We can enjoy Rosh Hashanah, and call it just that, but Christmas time is now "winter break" and before Jesus is Before Common Era. As people in America, we are always concerned about annoying other belief systems when this nation was established on faith.

By anon271633 — On May 27, 2012

If you die tomorrow, what will all this mean to you then? They will not even put the letters on your head stone, only numbers.

By oneidboy — On May 03, 2012

"...Which could be viewed as disrespectful of other religions and belief structures..." Two quick thoughts:

1. When was the last time you heard anyone say, "I am sick of being disrespected by those acronyms which divide certain points in time."

2. If you did hear that poor soul cry out, was your first thought, "We can fix this by veiling the truth of what is behind those evil acronyms -- with different acronyms. Take that, current evil letter combination!"

Frankly, I’m just a tad suspicious of the person whose solution to an assumed dissin’ is to lie. Peace.

By anon243248 — On Jan 26, 2012

During my research, I came across this change in terminology and wanted to understand the difference between using BC/AD and BCE/CE. This was in an effort to use the correct form in my writing.

I can understand all the differing opinions, however it seems history will still have a record of when the change occurred and why.

Therefore, references to Christ will not be forgotten, likewise everyone with a non-christian viewpoint will find using the updated version no different.

Let's create a world of tolerance and openness to change, where all feel included, rather than getting bogged down in paranoia.

By anon218418 — On Sep 29, 2011

I'm Romanian, and in my country only during the communist time (1945-1989) we were forced to use CE (romanian- e.n) and BCE (i.e.n), because the State policy was to impose atheism and scientific materialism. Communists were concerned about young people. They did care about the students and religion should have been irrelevant to this generation's coming of age in the last decade of the century of Lenin. I really don't want to remember anymore. I will ask my cable television to remove BBC from my programs.

By anon213415 — On Sep 11, 2011

The Christians can just think of it as - BCE 'Before Christ Existed' and CE 'Christ Exists'.

By anon202080 — On Aug 01, 2011

If anyone even gives a small glance at our Gregorian calendar system they will find it is a mixture of Greco/ Roman paganism, Judaism, and Catholicism. Some of the months are named after Greek gods(the month of June is named after the god Juno). The week system of seven days is based on the Torah. And yes AD and BC is based on Christian beliefs.

If we are going to remove the AD and BC to avoid offending people of other religions we should change the names of the months too. It may offend some to refer to a pagan god every summer. We should change the length of our weeks because it forces people to live a Jewish lifestyle. That is if we are afraid of being offensive.

On the other hand we could say that the Gregorian calendar represents a compromise of three important western religions and leave it be.

If we change the whole calendar system it will not be so that no one is offended; it will be so that atheists completely have their way.

By anon172567 — On May 04, 2011

33 years aren't missing. BC means before Christ and AD means the year of our Lord. AD starts the year of His birth, not His death. No missing 33 years and that also is the reason why AD does not stand for after death. AD has nothing to do with his death.

By anon165668 — On Apr 05, 2011

The only thing i don't understand is, isn't there a 33 year gap between BC and AD! i mean if you're trying to specific with dates that is a very significant length of years. That's pretty much a whole generation (or two, for back in those days).

So what I mean is, where did those years go? do they just not count? and if they do should that be added to BCE and Alexander the Great's date of birth be pushed back from 336 to 303 or should 2011 suddenly become 2044. Do you see how significant 33 years are? There were people who live and died in those years.

By anon162722 — On Mar 24, 2011

Funny how people actually have the nerve to accuse Christians of trying to force their religion down everyone's throats because BC/AD have been used to denote dates for several centuries! Talk about intolerance! You mosey into a world where God, Christ and the Bible have been the beginning and the end of much in human existence for millennia, and you want everyone to snap to and retool the whole world to your personal wishes. That isn't going to happen.

By anon161612 — On Mar 20, 2011

For those who state the early settlers to America were deists or believed in deism are in error. Deism is the belief in natural religion with a moral background. Those who fled Europe were Christians, whether fundamental or not is of no consequence.

To adhere to the aspect of many beliefs being present in the world today is correct. But there is only one Truth and that in the form of Jesus Christ.

The offer is not exclusive but is extended to all who will believe. The Bible states, "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9) Yet while the offer in not exclusive, the One the offer represents is. Jesus Christ himself said He is the way, the truth, and the life. Also, no one can come to the Father but by Him.

So, in the end, it's up to you to decide who this Jesus is to you. If He represents just one of many ways to believe, then I would suggest trying all the others first and see where you end up. If you happen to believe none of them, then I say good luck in this life and the one yet to come -- you're going to need it.

By anon161578 — On Mar 20, 2011

To anon157907 and others who assume that BCE and CE are in some way an accommodation to Islam, please get your heads out of your posteriors. This has nothing to do with Islam. And it has nothing to do with shoving Christianity down the drain. The only shoving is being done by people of your ilk who seem to feel the need to shove your beliefs down the throats of everyone else.

If you did your homework you would find out the early settlers came to this country to escape exactly that kind of narrow mindedness. The founders were deists, not fundamentalist Christians. And, contrary to what you see on Fox News, repeating an incorrect assertion or a lie does not make it true. As many posters have already pointed out, if we continue to use BC, Jesus was born in 4BC - which is silly. BCE corrects this. If your faith is so weak that it is challenged by something as minor as an attempt at historical accuracy, then perhaps it is not as true as you try to force yourself - and everyone else - to believe.

There are many more beliefs and faiths than the Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. (Yes, Islam stems from the same source as Christianity). In recognition of the fact that Christianity is one of many faiths, there is nothing wrong with making an attempt to recognize that history belongs to and is about everyone. The common good. Christianity is no better or more believable than say, Hinduism, or Buddhism. It is exceptional only in the number of atrocities committed in its furtherance.

By anon157907 — On Mar 04, 2011

BCE and CE are the politically correct way to express dates in a way that will not "offend" followers of Islam. This is a silly approach for two reasons.

First, the key date still focuses on the birth of You Know Who (even if it's off by four years). Second, well in my little world "BCE" means "Before Christian Era" and "CE" means "Christian Era."

By anon151762 — On Feb 11, 2011

I'm not changing my calendar. This challenge and changing of our Western world's common calendar dating system is annoying. My son is in India so I was reading up a Wikipedia story, and I found the dating system of BCE and CE is distracting and it's questionable to challenge and change the dating system of the Western world for the last hundreds of years. Are Wikipedia and others who do this trying to be politically correct? -- Who says this is politically correct? Muslims? Jews? -- 'It seems foolish since the pivotal date is still linked to the birth of Christ'.

I'm not a Christian anymore but I was raised so and see value in that culture and the "golden rule," for those Christians who actually practice what they preach (i.e. treat others like you would like to be treated: the one and only commandment of Jesus Christ) -- but, even though my personal beliefs have evolved I'm sorry, I'm not changing my calendar and won't link to any articles that do.

I find it impossible to read through them since changing of the current worldwide Western calendar system is distracting and brings up other issues unrelated to the content of what I'm interested in.

I'd encourage Christians to wake up, about this subversion of their culture. First Christmas becomes Xmas, and Saint Nicholas or Santa Claus more important than the birth of Christ, and TV all about Old Testament stories and Zionist spins of the story of Jesus (like 'King of Kings') which wraps up the story of Christ with Zionist revolution against Rome -- sickening, truly sickening. And now we have a dating system that deletes Christ. Well, I'm not on board and who exactly is?

By anon140443 — On Jan 07, 2011

A lot of this assumes someone actually believes whats written in the bible. Just leave it all alone and worry about something important, like that comet streaking towards planet earth and the ultimate demise of every living thing.

By anon139136 — On Jan 03, 2011

Actually, in Genesis it's recorded that God fellowshipped with Adam in Eden prior to the fall. So God was common to man even in BCE.

By anon138888 — On Jan 03, 2011

I like what you just said anon137173. That's a pretty cool and good explanation of bce and ce.

By anon137173 — On Dec 26, 2010

We can look at it as this, BCE; Before Common Era (before God was common with man) CE Common Era (Christ made man, i.e. God dwelt among us and became common with man).

By val555 — On Dec 21, 2010

You want to know what this is about? Read Romans 1:18-22 in the Holy Bible and be made aware of the times and world in which you're living. Don't have a Bible? Go to the library or better yet, go online and read it for yourself. Don't be fooled, God is not mocked, whatever you sow, you'll also reap, regardless of who you are or where you live or what you choose to believe.

By anon136200 — On Dec 21, 2010

The Bible states in the book of Romans, chapter 1, verses 18-22 exactly what is being discussed in this arena.

In case you don't have a Bible, it states, "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools...".

Don't care who you are or where you live, or whether you're an agnostic or atheist or something else. Don't care what religion or cult you follow or don't, what your financial status is or your intelligence level, God has you noted and offers you a chance to discover who He is.

Does anyone really believe that the AD/BC aspect of the current calendar we use globally is accidental or insignificant? I hope not and I pray that whoever reads these posts will realize what is actually going on in our current culture and respond accordingly.

By anon135763 — On Dec 20, 2010

ckm2n said; I believe that it is very probable that god is a man made concept that explains the "unexplainable" and guides the immoral.

However, with advances in technology, science, human ingenuity, and modern government we find ourselves needing little to no explanation of existence or "holy" moral guidance. Really?

The world is so immoral now it's pathetic. Racism is more radical than ever in history. We are on the verge of a nuclear war. The world is worst when it comes to morals than it has ever been in the past.

Let's hope God comes back to save the world before it destroys itself.

By Tony Stewart — On Nov 14, 2010

Standardizing is an essential tool to improve accuracy of communication on this planet.

1) English has been the universal language between International ATC's and pilots.

2) The Metric system called the Standard International (SI) units is used by every country in the world except USA (non-SI) whose challenge is to educate the masses.

Calendars around the globe from China to Iran are a culture clash with the rest of us with religious overtones.

The best way to get acceptance on universal use of the Gregorian calendar is to use English words (drop the Latin) and religious significance.

Or else, use Star Dates. Ha.

By anon121932 — On Oct 26, 2010

It is another attempt to de-embiggen God and religion in the world and, more importantly, to revise history - plain and simple. Saying '1066 AD' is no more of a "recognition" of Christianity than singing 'S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y Night!' or 'Tuesday's Gone' are "recognitions" of Roman or Norse deities. But, those are the correct ways to say it.

So, turn off the Bay City Rollers, put the crack pipe down, and quit coming up with stupid PC vs. whatever. -Michael

By anon118096 — On Oct 12, 2010

before this evening I had never heard the term BCE. curious about what it was, I did a search and came across this site. Like, is it really an affront to god/jesus/whoever/whatever to say BCE as opposed to BC? Are we really offending the "almighty" by using CE instead of AD. you people need a hobby, or a life.

By anon117416 — On Oct 10, 2010

What I don't understand is, why can't we just say Before Christian Era (BCE) and Christian Era (CE) instead? I understand that AD (In the year of our Lord) would bother people, but why do we need to replace "Christ" or "Christian" with "Common"? Seems like revisionism to me.

If we were still using the Roman calendar (AUC - from the founding of Rome) would we chance this to "from the founding of the common city"? Of course not!

By anon114381 — On Sep 28, 2010

It doesn't matter which system is used. All you people that think if we change that it's a dis on christianity are stupid. It's just changing the way we say it, not saying we're trying to take christianity out of our lives.

By anon112820 — On Sep 22, 2010

Exactly. People have used B.C and A.D for centuries and now they want to change it. In my own opinion, just like anon6567 said, it's like they are trying to shove Christianity down the drain.

By anon112123 — On Sep 19, 2010

I find nothing wrong with either dating system. Each are representative of a method of counting. Besides their lack of zero, does the Roman numeral system mean anything less than that of the decimal system? In context they're identical. I think that if there must be a reason to get rid of it, and a reason to argue about how it is to be written/rendered then you are trying to place a more significant role on it.

Those of you who say that it must stay are wrong, but think that holding on to worldly view of Christ is going to somehow make a difference, but you are wrong. It is you who are being watched, not the date symbol, since most people have forgotten its significance.

It is more important that you model your lives to be this "trinket" of Christ. His greatest doctrine said spread the word, not to put posters on the wall and tell people not to touch it. The bible says that we are to reflect the love of God in order to show Him to others.

On the other hand, all of you who say that it is important to remove this symbol are at fault also. You place such great importance on this religion that you don't believe in, but you diligently try to eradicate it from the face of the earth. It seems that those who are most threatened and offended by this are those who prefer it not to exist.

If it is such a silly system and lacking meaning, why then is it so important to remove it? Let those who want to be the fool do as such. You may say that it is not to impose such beliefs on others, but in reality you are trying to remove it from history.

Explaining the religious and historical context of any event (including those non-christian) will not impose anything on others. Even some of the most primitive tribes would recognize the events of another tribe's religious history, even in disbelief.

You can't teach acceptance if you are constantly pushing away. You can't respect another person's belief if you shoot down every idea behind it. Good luck all.

By iwamble — On Sep 05, 2010

the gregorian calendar has been proven to not have the actual year that Jesus was born, however that's what they were shooting for. So we have not been using a calendar with the actual birth year of jesus.

The abbreviations A.D. is a medieval latin term "Anno Domini" which means "in the year of our/the lord. It seems that this term would insinuate that the world or at least anyone using this calendar would actually believe christ is Lord.

if C.E or B.C.E. were used it would clear up both these misconceptions for everyone because a date in time has nothing to do with any religious reference.

By anon107068 — On Aug 28, 2010

It doesn't matter whether you believe in God or not. Even other religions acknowledge Jesus' existence, perhaps as a prophet or disciple. They just don't believe that he was the son of God. So whether you believe in God or not, Jesus did exist and the dates stem from his birth.

You can debate the importance of it all you want. I personally like AD standing for "After Death". It makes more sense since you have "Before Christ (a.k.a. Jesus)". It just leaves a gap of 33 years or so.

By anon106294 — On Aug 25, 2010

well i am reading these comments and i found an obscene comment on the prophet of a religion. i want to request to all readers or commentators that before saying anything, gather your data about that thing and then come up with an argument.

We all have only partial knowledge and in the words of Russell, the relationship of things is what we know only.

By anon101359 — On Aug 03, 2010

I know that this debate is about a dating system; it is not about religion bashing! how all of you got in a big argument about this is beyond me. Yes, i know that it has to do with the birth of Christ, but it's not saying anything against anyone or anyone's beliefs. and even if they do change to the new system it's still based on the birth of Christ. So please focus on what the debate is about, not trying to destroy what faith may or may not be left in the world. thank you.

By anon91914 — On Jun 24, 2010

This dumb way should we continue to destroy western culture? Let's keep the BC/AD system. This whole debate is stupid. I am done trading my culture for nitpickers.

By anon90021 — On Jun 14, 2010

I agree with those who say that there is or was no real proof that God really exist. I personally have doubt that God does exist. But on the other hand, the calendar which we used today was made by those people who believe in God.

In respect to those people, I think it's just right to use BC and AD as a reference. Those who disagree should then make their own calendar.

By ckm2n — On Jun 12, 2010

There is no evidence of god's existence. Anyone who believes in god does so on faith alone with no actual measurable proof.

I believe that it is very probable that god is a man made concept that explains the "unexplainable" and guides the immoral.

However, with advances in technology, science, human ingenuity, and modern government we find ourselves needing little to no explanation of existence or "holy" moral guidance.

How can you in your one religion, among thousands both past and present, know for a fact that you are right?

Another way of phrasing it is, what are the odds that you will be born into right religion (I think they're all probably wrong) out of all the religions in the wold both past and present.

How do you know you should not worship Baal, Thor, Allah, Wotan, Egyptian gods, or any other god available?

You do this off faith alone based off what you are told, in many cases during childhood. It may cause you mental harm to hear someone say what you believe with all your heart is probably wrong, but it is the logical answer.

There are simply too many religions and no evidence too support them except ancient stories. Though these stories are significant to understanding our culture, art, and history; they do not have to be true and in all likelihood were probably invented by people, not magically created by an all powerful, all knowing, creator of everything.

By anon85998 — On May 23, 2010

this is all another good reason to use star dates.

we are going to eventually when we build the constellation class star ship enterprise so why not get used to star dates now?

By anon85775 — On May 21, 2010

"Now whether you believe in God or not, that does not change the fact that He is real, He sent his Son to die for our sins (past, present, and future), and he will judge those who do not accept His Son as their Savior.

The wrath of God is coming, and unless you accept Christ, you will be damned to Hell for ever and ever and ever."

That's the problem with all religions. "If you don't believe my version you are condemned." For centuries the Catholics and protestants killed each other for an interpretation of the "one" God. Why are there so many versions of Christianity when they all profess to believe in the same Christ? Religious wars continue today. How backward is it to still live in "The Dark Ages".

By anon85003 — On May 18, 2010

I am a Christian, but for the purposes of BCE vs. BC, it is of little scientific significance.

Desiring to change the notation for time keeping that has been in existence for centuries has as much value as changing AM to BN (Before Noon) and PM to AN (After Noon) just because one doesn't like using Latin. It *is* the established notation and people would find it very silly to make the change, if it were not for the fact that it is an emotionally charged issue due to the reference to Christ.

If it had been originally established as BC (before Confucius) or BC (before Cleopatra) and dated accordingly, do you think people would be trying to make the change? Probably not.

The only reason the change was promulgated is because people don't like the reference to Christ, just like they don't like the reference to Christ in Christmas and try to eradicate that as well.

If one does not believe that Christ is, in fact, the Son of God, and does not desire to worship in that manner, that is their prerogative. But, the fact that Christ's life occurred is a historical fact (as is Confucius and Cleopatra) and if that was chosen centuries ago as a time marker for reference, why does it need to be changed?

By anon84475 — On May 16, 2010

anon77863 said "What makes you think that everything revolves around christ. What if i tell you i'm atheist. Are you the pope or something that you keep on yapping about this jesus thing. it's driving me crazy".

I say a short trip for you huh! I do not care who is offended by the existence of Christ. He does and will exist and rule, no matter what you think or deduce. Christians are not in the business of making bridges to the lost. God/Jesus does that in His time and in His way.

By anon82879 — On May 07, 2010

squee - and the world continues its downward spiral. *sigh* Thanks for the historical information around how the acronyms and their use came to be. (Though most here seemed to have missed the point entirely and turned a simple question about acronyms related to dating into a religious pontification session.)

By qrazstoin — On Apr 28, 2010

Undereducated thoughts, quite amusing. Thank God for the participants of this forum. Fairly entertaining, like an animal in a zoo, sadly dependent upon the degree of deprivation but still interesting to watch.

This forum is funny, but at the same time disheartening that there are so many people obviously slowing the progression of human accomplishments. Things will change one day anyway. Thanks everyone and keep em coming. Good stuff.

By anon80471 — On Apr 27, 2010

Actually, I am a Christian and have to say that this is a silly argument. As I have been reading posts, I have come to a conclusion.

First, the article states that whether BC/AD or BCE/CE the reference point remains the same-- the defining moment was and will remain the birth of Christ.

Second, both when I was in school and all through my adult years the BC/AD terms were always widely misinterpreted by anyone I knew-- so that the literal meaning was almost always unclear. One would always hear the argument... "Well, if BC means before Christ, what is AD?... After Death?" or "What about the years Christ lived?" or "When does AD actually start?" No one ever remembered the Latin phrase that AD stood for. It's like AM/PM... Only the knowledgeable one in the group could ever answer them.

I remember answering this quite a few times and still no one would get it or remember. Why do we use a Latin phrase for only one portion of it anyway? And I am really glad some schmo did not decide to use BVE/VE using the Vulgar Era. Wouldn't that be a hoot?

Third, the only truly reasonable comment I read is this:

Perhaps the new terms BCE/CE really must be re-interpreted: BCE = Before Christ Existed and CE means - Christ Exists!

This would make the use of these acronyms quite easy to explain to someone and would also be an easy mnemonic by which to remember their meaning. Because whether it literally means "Common Era" or not- the reference point is and will always be Christ.

There are bigger battles to fight than this one. The new acronym can be easily used to the favor of a Christian and still would not be offensive to other religions.

Although I don't believe in compromising my moral code, I still don't wish to offend anyone else's. I don't think this change offends my moral code as a Christian at all.

God is bigger and better than to allow the world He created to wipe Him from its history. It just simply cannot be done. No matter what acronym we use. Simply call CE the Common Era or Christ Exists, Christ's Era, the Church Era, or whatever you want.

Sooner or later the history books will read:

"BCE/CE use to refer to the Common Era... but since people were not familiar with what the heck the common era even was the term is more widely recognized as meaning Before Christ Existed and Christ's Era...."

But CE: Come Everyone- you are all welcome in Christ's Eternal home.

By shiloh — On Apr 26, 2010

Jesus is the way the truth and the light! He has His arms open wide for all to come and redeem themselves and receive salvation. Jesus loves me this I know for the bible tells me so. Read John 3:16! Read and have faith that Jesus is Lord!

Read Philippians 2:9-11.

"And Jesus said unto them ..., "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible to you" (Matthew 17:20).

Read Romans 1:17.

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you" (Deuteronomy 31:6).

“I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst” (John 6:35).

2 Corinthians 4:18 "While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal."

By anon80289 — On Apr 26, 2010

Jesus is my lord and savior! You'd better get to know him while you have the chance. Every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess that jesus is lord! Praise god! Amen

By anon79628 — On Apr 23, 2010

To the atheist i say: If you are right and Jesus is "just this thing," then when i die i have lost nothing by living his truth and being holy. But what will happen to you if i am right?

By anon79083 — On Apr 21, 2010

A distinction between periods of time historically was decided on many years ago. A historical event of world significance was used as the line drawn in the sand and its effectiveness has just as much relevance now as when it was first decided on and accepted to use.

It's like using the metric system -- it's a system of measure that for all intents and purposes works for everyday measure.

Agnostics simply fail to exercise something called faith, and atheists deny that faith. Yes, I know that's a simplified view but it is the basic principle behind these two belief systems and if belief systems defines religion as a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a supernatural agency or agencies then by default these two belief systems are also religions.

They may not consider themselves as religions but then again, Christians do not consider their belief to be religion either, but a relationship with their Creator. So it would seem non-believers would like to create a double-standard as well as those in the wrappings of religion who believe Christ existed as only a great teacher instead of the only begotten Son of God.

Christianity does not profess its believers to be perfect -- just the opposite. It is acceptance of those of us who are less than perfect by a belief and faith in a Creator that has unquestionable love for His creation that He created perfectly in their imperfections. Why would anyone argue the contrary to such a message?

But yet, as it is written, there will be!

Those who wish to remove all religious connotations should truly consider the results of removing all religion from our planet. What's left over? A society to do as it pleases and left up to its own devices, without rule, and if one were to reply that rule would still exist by laws, wouldn't that then become religion, and who would create these laws? and what would they be based on? Human decency? Who would decide what human decency would be? And would it not simply be a plagiarism of scripture? Without those morals to measure a society against then lawlessness is acceptable.

I can come to your house and take all that you have and it would be acceptable. We all could rape, pillage and burn with a clear conscience. Some "self-believers" would say that is exactly what religion causes but and there may be some truth to that. The God I believe in didn't create religion -- that was mankind's doing -- and as with most things mankind creates, it is fallible.

Someone argued that truth is unquestionable and if there is argument over Christianity or Muslims or any other belief considered religion then it must not be the truth. I agree with the statement they made that truth is unquestionable and that's where my agreement ends. Truth is from belief, and most non-Christian beliefs consider at the least that Christ was a great leader, a great teacher, a great rabbi, a messenger from God. Some non Christians even believe in His miraculous, immaculate conception.

Unless you simply discount the existence altogether that Jesus Christ existed at all, the spiritual and historical evidence points to the contrary. So if the majority accept Jesus in the very least as a great teacher or messenger of God, why would they also not accept His teachings? Do they view Jesus as a liar? Do they view Him as a lunatic or heretic? A blasphemer? And if so, then how could He also be a great and wonderful leader or teacher or messenger of God?

Either he is considered a great leader by His life and His teachings because they are the truth, because His message is that He is the Way and the Truth and the Light and that no one gets to the father except through Him, He was the final and perfect sacrifice.

So from His own teachings, if you cannot believe that as the truth, then the alternative is to see the message as an abomination and blasphemy. If you view it as either, you've acknowledged God's existence because who else would such a message be blasphemy or an abomination to?

So there seems to be a disconnect to believing Jesus was a great leader, teacher, rabbi, healer, messenger, if indeed one stops himself short of believing Him also to be our Savior.

By anon77863 — On Apr 15, 2010

What makes you think that everything revolves around christ. What if i tell you i'm atheist. Are you the pope or something that you keep on yapping about this jesus thing. it's driving me crazy.

By anon76496 — On Apr 10, 2010

Our institutions, both civic and religious, are crumbling and so each of its proponents are poised to defend their personal beliefs.

There is no correct answer because the power to change on earth rests with those who have financial means to make that change regardless of justification.

At one time the Christian Church had much power and financial stability. Time, ignorance and the necessity to forgive beyond common decency have placed it at an all time low.

The forces of anti-religion are now in charge of the world as they once were at the beginning of the Roman Empire. For them the world will end at their last breath. For those who believe, this is just a stop along the way.

It is what religion is all about, faith that there is something more than this puny existence. Faith that living right leads to redemption. No change instituted by men can have everlasting consequences so don't sweat the small stuff, the Almighty isn't!

By anon76394 — On Apr 10, 2010

This is nothing more than an attempt by the anti-religious to stamp out an sense of God in our lives. Unfortunately for those people, every time I see 'BCE', I take pause and become ever more acutely aware of God.

By anon75750 — On Apr 07, 2010

I think it is so stupid that we are taking Jesus' name out of our year. It revolved around Him!

We think we don't need him in anything, but someday we will. I really think we shouldn't do it because we need to have our lives revolve around him.

If we take that out, that is just one more thing to make us forget our Savior. It is just America doing something dumb again because we think we can do it all on our own, but really we are selfish and stubborn and Americans just don't get it.

By ukayukay — On Apr 07, 2010

How absurd it would be to say Christ was born in 4 BC or four years before his birth?

BCE eliminates this error.

By anon73811 — On Mar 29, 2010

All these comments, (what is truth)

Truth is when you can no longer question a given answer, if anything is questionable. You don't have the answer. evidently we are not intelligent enough to know, so all be honest to oneself and say - i don't know.

By anon72870 — On Mar 24, 2010

Actually Muslims do recognize Jesus but as human being, not as a god. we believe he was messenger from God and was begotten without a father (a miracle), but he was a man, a messenger, a human being. he didn't die for our past, present and future sins.

he was resurrected and he will be back. When he will be back then everything will be clear who is right and who is wrong. "Mary, your Lord gives you good news of a Word from Him. His name is the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, of high esteem in this world and the Hereafter, one of those brought near." (Qur'an, 3:45). She said: "My Lord, how can I have a son when no man has yet touched me?" He said: "It will be so." God creates whatever He wills. When He decides on something, He just says to it "Be!" and it is. (Qur'an, 3:47). When God said: "Jesus, I will take you back and raise you up to Me, and purify you of those who are unbelievers. And I will place the people who follow you (at that time) above those who are unbelievers until the Day of Resurrection. Then you will all return to Me, and I will judge between you regarding the things about which you differed. (Surah Al 'Imran, 3:55). To clear up the meaning of last quotation: "Those who say that the Messiah, son of Mary, is the third of three are unbelievers. There is no god but the One God. (Surat al-Ma'ida, 5:73). And [on account of] their saying: "We killed the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, Messenger of God." They did not kill him and they did not crucify him, but it was made to seem so to them. Those who argue about him are in doubt about it. They have no real knowledge of it, just conjecture. But they certainly did not kill him. (Surat An-Nisa', 4:157)

God raised him [Jesus] up to Himself. God is Almighty, All-Wise. (Surat An-Nisa', 4:158)

He will return and unite Islam and Christianity.

By anon72519 — On Mar 23, 2010

First off, we don't all agree that Jesus's birth (which didn't occur at the non-existent year 0) is the most pertinent place to separate two arbitrary eras; the fact that it has been in use for millennia and is the reason we suggest keeping the dating method, with or without a change to the labels.

Secondly, using the BC/AD scheme doesn't merely show that Christians pioneered the Gregorian calendar, it also implicitly accepts Jesus Christ as Lord (Anno Domini means "year of our lord"). The non-religious as well as non-Christians obviously don't agree with this implication and would like to see the Gregorian calendar amended to reflect religious tolerance.

No one is seeking this change to kill Christianity, but to promote this tolerance.

In spite of all these facts, it's not a big deal to me whether or not others use the BCE/CE labels. I use them because I like to keep up with scientific innovations and find this scheme common in science texts.

By anon72408 — On Mar 23, 2010

What is such a real puzzle is you can just feel the hatred from the people who are so anti-God, anti-Christ (except for that one guy above). I'm just shocked that anyone could look into the sky, see the beauty in our animals and world before us humans began destroying it, and deny there is a God. But like Johnny Cash's famous song: "It's going by the book" (bible, that is)

By anon70614 — On Mar 15, 2010

In God We Trust is on the American currency.

By anon70441 — On Mar 14, 2010

I'm not religious, but I find the efforts to change AD, BC, "Christmas", etc. pretty silly. (I live in a largely Jewish area, so I will use "Happy Holidays" if I'm not sure of someone's religion. By the way, some Jewish people get annoyed if you say "Happy Hanukkah" if they don't celebrate Hanukkah.)

I had to look this up because my friend kept using "BCE" and "ACE" (?) and I wanted to know why. By the way, "AD" stands for "Anno Domini" (year of our Lord), not "After Death". Whatever people decide is fine, but I just think it's silly to change it when we're still using his birth date (real or otherwise) as a point of reference. Besides, "God" is on our money, and I haven't seen anyone refuse to use money, or refuse to take their Christmas vacation, for that matter.

By anon69699 — On Mar 09, 2010

BCE is more politically correct nonsense. I'm an agnostic but respect Christianity. Christ was a man of peace. Mohammed was a warrior who massacred his enemies. BC/AD is fine with me.

By anon69664 — On Mar 09, 2010

If God doesn't exist and there is no after life, according to the atheists, then why do you need to get rid of Christianity? It won't make any difference to you if you just disappear from existence after you die. So why then crack down so hard on Christians?

We don't harm you, and we don't force you to follow Christ. The times of sorrow that are mentioned in Revelation are coming near and only those who follow the teachings of Jesus; those who truly believe in the existence, the sufferings, the resurrection of Jesus; and that he, Jesus, is the Way, the Truth, and the Life; and those who repent from their many sins and ask for his forgiveness will not be tortured forever in the Lake of Fire.

I'm not implying that I or any other followers of Christ are perfect, but we Christians have been released from the penalty of sin and someday will be released from its presence. God was less merciful in the Old Testament times, but since Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, that gave each and every human being a chance for salvation.

God went through so much suffering to give us a chance of eternal life not death. Don't waste your chance. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16. God loves you.

By anon66175 — On Feb 18, 2010

SineQuaNon: The current system for defining time has nothing to do with America; it's been around since the middle ages. Our calendar, as well as historical dating were devised by christian historians. Why? Probably because they were the only educated people at the time.

You want to use BCE and CE? Feel free, but remember you're still using the birth of Christ as a historical reference point. You want to switch to the Chinese calendar? Good luck. It's a cyclical calendar -- not continuous. That means the New Year changes every year and no one knows if it's year 4707, 4708 or 4647. The fact is, we use the current christian invented calendar because it works.

I mean really, does anyone think about religion when they look at the calendar? They're "Christian" because they were invented by Christians and no other reason.

By anon61821 — On Jan 22, 2010

BCE, CE, AD, BC. What do you all want-- a timeline with zero on it? Everyone agrees Jesus Christ is a good point to start at! Stop denying people of faith. Your world is dependent on us who have faith. doing what we do, good or bad, it's all we have, so stop trying to proselytize us to your stupidity. There's a difference between ignorance and stupidity. Figure it out.

By anon60393 — On Jan 13, 2010

Yes, I believe there is a commonality to us all. I would have thought those with strong religious backgrounds and beliefs would easily see that. Surely you see common bonds going back to biblical times, but do you still see them in Neolithic Humans who have just learned how to use tools and build simple structures?

This will never be resolved, BCE, CE, BC, AD, etc. But atheistic groups don't have to go around telling everyone that God or Jesus don't exist and never did. Similarly, Christian groups have the responsibility to hold back their opinions on "feeling sorry" for those who don't believe and cramming "god bless you's" or "Jesus loves you's" down everyone's throat. It's not your place or your right, and you're wrong.

"Forgetting God is not religion, but a spiritual bond-and Jesus is the most quoted prophet in the Koran..."

If you cannot accept science's role in the creation of existence, and in the governing of how we are able to travel through various planes of life, then how strong can your trust and belief of a higher power really be? I'm not religious, but I am spiritual, and I know well that God is not a magician. We were given intellect-and if you insist that we weren't, where did it come from? Evolution?

By anon59894 — On Jan 10, 2010

What is common era? Is there anything common to us all? Everybody has its own thing, so it's better for me to count the date from the perspective of before and after Jesus Christ came to earth. BC for before Christ and AD for year of my Lord Jesus Christ. Whether you like it or not, it happened. God bless.

By anon59032 — On Jan 05, 2010

I am going to start using BCE and CE. I am trying to eliminate the Christian faith from my life altogether. I can't believe anything that religion has spewed. I call "Christmas" Mas. It is not a big deal for me. I believe in evolution and natural selection. I cannot believe that we were created by some superior being. It is literally impossible.

So, using BCE and CE will be nice. This way, I don't have to feel like I'm giving all of the historical credit to the Christians.

Personally, I don't even believe Jesus existed.

And all the mega-Christians will say they "feel sorry" for me. Really, really?

I know I won't be "condemned to hell" in the afterlife. I don't have any worries sitting on my back. Thank you BCE and CE.

By anon58593 — On Jan 03, 2010

To add to or amend to my previous comment (regarding "AD" as After Death+"BC" as Before Christ Vs. BCE and CE...

There is one major bonus point. When typing, or when reading someone else's handwriting, it would be far easier to get BCE and CE mixed up by just losing the "B". Much harder to get AD confused with how BC looks.

By anon58414 — On Jan 01, 2010

Why is it that extreme religious types always feel the need to use every aspect of science, history, medicine, etc. to prove that God loves us all and that the path is through Jesus? Isn't God a "vengeful and wrathful god"?

Jesus was a peaceful prophet in many religions, condemned to a horrible death for sharing his beliefs. Leave it alone, and let people opine on their own about their faith and spiritual beliefs.

On to the date, BC AD we so common, because Christianity eventually morphed into a church that had to spread a finger into virtually every nook and corner of the globe. Thus, it became common for many to say BC as "before Christ", and AD "after death". But how is this so? BC became AD virtually and literally overnight. Just as the clock would now chime midnight.

Jesus didn't exist, and was promptly dead overnight?

BCE and CE are much easier to introduce into other cultures, who may not recognize Jesus as the sole path to God, i.e. many Buddhists. This doesn't change the need for historical records of what happened to "primitive" civilizations. We count the dates currently based on the orbit between the sun and earth. Basically, where the sun lies in the sky.

Ancient Egyptians also used the sun: Ra, the Sun God. They worshiped this god. Is it sacrilege that we still use this as our main means of (not only time), but on life itself? I'm curious about the religious sect's opinion here.

Not being argumentative. Where does the Bible stop, and physical science begin --and vice versa? Hope everyone's new year (2010 CE) turns out to be much better than the last. Happy trails all.

By anon57393 — On Dec 22, 2009

Perhaps bce really must be interpreted: before christ existed and ce means - christ exists!

By anon55961 — On Dec 10, 2009

I have never posted anything on the net, but I feel that there is a need to know the truth, as I see it in the Word of God, The Bible.

There is no doubt that the Lord Jesus died on the cross for our sins. And there is no doubt that the Lord God Almighty turned his back on his only begotten son, so that we may be saved from the Wrath of God.

Now whether you believe in God or not, that does not change the fact that He is real, He sent his Son to die for our sins (past, present, and future), and he will judge those who do not accept His Son as their Savior.

The wrath of God is coming, and unless you accept Christ, you will be damned to Hell for ever and ever and ever.

Now like I said, whether you believe it or not, it is true. Read Luke 16:19-31. Repent, I beg you all, call on the name of the Lord Jesus for mercy from the wrath of God.

By anon55125 — On Dec 04, 2009

BCE/CE what? When did this come out? doesn't matter. i will still say bc/ad. i will not say xmas. i will say Christmas. It's like they're trying too get rid of Jesus as a historical person, which he was.

People only question the bible; they don't question other historic documents/books. why the bible has proof for tons of stuff. i could give you some examples but it will not matter.

By anon55112 — On Dec 04, 2009

I am curious as to what signifies the end of BCE though. What event happened that suddenly declared "Oh hey we're now in the common era." Anyone got a link?

By anon51686 — On Nov 08, 2009

It is established beyond any question that human beings existed on earth at least six million years ago. Two thousand and four thousand years ago are relatively mere milliseconds in time of human existence. To quibble over a man-made vacuous subject about which no one (but no one) has ever known or ever will know is obviously fruitless.

By anon50950 — On Nov 02, 2009

Political correctness gone mad. Yet another example of language being sanitised.S oon it will be impossible to even use terminology like men and women in case we offend hermaphrodites.

By anon50636 — On Oct 30, 2009

I think you people are hilarious. It doesn't matter what you or I think. as long as your religious organizations have all that money and power it is going to be their way.

I don't know how we would change it anyhow, to be honest, we live or I live in a very capitalistic country and that money is not in my pocket. I don't make the laws and I don't get the almighty buck.

By anon50506 — On Oct 29, 2009

BCE stands for "Before the Common Era". "The fool", that's those of you who base your life on the teachings of a book -- a book written by another human being. duh. Show me actual living proof that christ exists, and I'll show you a virgin whore. I would give my life to see some proof of your savior's existence. Anyone can be a christian: child molesters, murderers, rapists, crooks, pimps, thieves, and complete morons who have no self knowledge are the ones who believe in christ! They are "good christians". You can be the most despicable human being on the planet, but if you believe in christ you are cool. It's just a cloak for screw ups. Instead of finding value in yourself and the world around you, you remain in your insecurity and "believe" that something other than yourself can save yourself. Ha Ha.

By anon49934 — On Oct 24, 2009

The most important fact that is not being addressed is the fact that the creator of the universe and His Son were never named "GOD or "Christ" or even "Lord" or "Jesus"! Their true names were revealed to us in the original texts of Scripture and the 10 Commands, all od which were given to us in Hebrew. Therefore the true names are pronounced Yahua (YHWH) and Yahusha. All of Scripture supports this and we can now see the evil control that Satan has on the sacred Names by changing them through the evil power of the Jesuits of the Catholic church.

By anon48020 — On Oct 08, 2009

It is a sad day when human kind no longer wants to give glory to God by merely acknowledging a period of time BC "before Christ" and AD- "Anno Domini-in the year of our Lord." One day, every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Then many people will wish they not denied Him.

By SineQuaNon — On Sep 15, 2009

Well it seems to me that the prevalent view being expressed here is that everyone must adhere to the idea that the American way of defining time is of the most relevance. Surely the way of defining time should be the one that has been in existence the longest which would make the chinese calendar the most relevant. It must also be pointed out that if we as a race believe in freedom of religion then the new system of defining dates (BCE, CE)is the most in line with this inalienable human right. There are a lot more religions in the world then Christianity and, I believe, 191 countries other then America. To say that we must define time due to the christian beliefs of one of the world's youngest countries which houses only 280 million of the world's population of 6 billion-plus is arrogant in the extreme, and is, as has been previously mentioned in other comments, rather offensive.

By anon45138 — On Sep 14, 2009

Funny. BCE. Before Christian Era. CE. Christian Era. Like it or not we date things by the birth of Christ. If we wish to change this system, then we need to change our start dates for the break between the ancient civilizations and the more modern, or perhaps have no break at all and date as if we know when the world began. Maybe we should toss all the dating conventions into a hat and choose one. Perhaps a return to the Roman AUD or after the founding of Rome? Maybe the Jewish calendar. The Buddhist. The Chinese. The Mayan, nope that ends in 2012. Silly season is coming our way. Just because you dislike a terminology does not mean that you are not in fact using a given date as your start date. Once you use that date; you can't or shouldn't pretend that you don't use it. Our 'Western Society' uses Christ's birth date as the start. And people who use facts for a living should know this. Why pretend otherwise?

By anon44692 — On Sep 09, 2009

I hope I'm not the only one who's thoroughly entertained by the fit that some people are having over this.

By anon43697 — On Aug 31, 2009

You people have it all wrong: "BCE" stands for "Before Communist Era" - since it is the communists who want to erase all religion from the earth.

By anon40940 — On Aug 11, 2009

Every year is a year God created, whether before or after the birth of Christ. AD and CE are pointless anyway.

By anon39451 — On Aug 01, 2009

No matter what, I'll still put Christ in it. BC=Before Christ; AD=Anno Domini; BCE=Before Christian Era; CE=Christian Era.

By anon38489 — On Jul 26, 2009

Nothing should change. AD/BC

By anon35520 — On Jul 05, 2009

Why change the terms which have effectively defined time for centuries? Are we afraid to refer to Christ in connection to history? God created time so good luck taking him out of the equation. By the way, make sure you have read the entire Bible before you call it just a book of stories passed down... God will change your life via the Bible, He did mine. This is His love story written for you. Please do not miss out on His great love!

By anon33291 — On Jun 03, 2009

BCE = Before Christ Existed...

Ha! Christianity still wins!

By anon32310 — On May 19, 2009

how can you convert:

bc into ad?

bce into ce?

ad into bce?

be into ce?

By anon32206 — On May 18, 2009

2009 is Anno Domini; the Christian way of counting the years.

2009 of Common Era is a fascist method of actually *forcing* other religions to adopt Christianity by using the "*common*" term!

By anon32092 — On May 16, 2009

Wow, I can't believe most of you people. Removing Christianity from the world? You've *got* to be kidding me!

If you want to be Christian, then be Christian and stop harassing other people and criticizing their religions. Who knows what is right. Are you saying that you know all that God knows?

The bigger point is this: is it killing anyone to refer to the 7th century AD as the 7th century CE? No. I can't believe that a change in recording historic dates is frustrating you all so much. It is quite obvious that most of you know nothing of history. If you did, your eyes would be much more open.

Our country is engulfed in the ways of close-minded Christians so this demonic change is nothing compared to what other religions have to face in the US.

The Bible teaches to love and respect. So if you really are Christian, respect others!

By anon30647 — On Apr 22, 2009

If the reason for removing the term AD/BC in historical dates is to respect other *religions* and cultures, then how does *before common era* show respect to *Muslims*!?

By jleigh1054 — On Apr 21, 2009

Rosh Hashanah is in honor of our Father God and is required by some. God Bless You, God Loves You.

By jleigh1054 — On Apr 21, 2009

According to Hunter Miller's notes, "the Barlow translation is at best a poor attempt at a paraphrase or summary of the sense of the Arabic" and "Article 11... does not exist at all."[15]

By jleigh1054 — On Apr 14, 2009

BCE has to do with anti-Christianity.

Anything that wants to remove respectful recognition of God, *is* *anti-Christianity*, and leaves our children with less and less examples of "it is the right thing to do", by our country.

We are to teach others about God. Not throw God out the window for someone else's god.

By anon28428 — On Mar 16, 2009

I just received a book published 2009 The Art of Being Human for a humanities class and they use B.C.E. Americans and/or Christians need to start thinking globally instead of as the one almighty. We don't use a Buddhist calendar, or the Chinese, or the Muslem's.

By anon28054 — On Mar 10, 2009

Thanks for the explanation pertaining to the difference. I am doing research that deals with thousands of years of history and some researchers use bc/ad while others use bce/ce. This provided very clear and useful information for me. I can make up my own mind as to which I prefer to us when writing my dissertation.

By aes7878 — On Mar 03, 2009

The Bible says that the love of money, not money itself, is the root of all evil. "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." (1 Tim. 6:10) It is appropriate to have "In God We Trust" on our money to show that the Lord is the source of all our liberty and prosperity. As for Christians forcing things on others -- if people don't like the person whose birthday is being celebrated, they don't need to eat his cake and open his presents. As for being offended by Christians, who pray in public, why are they offended? Is it because they are ungrateful to the One who has shown them everlasting kindness and are uncomfortable to see others thanking the Lord for all he does for them? If they are so offended at the Lord, they should stop walking on his planet, eating his food, and breathing his air.

By aes7878 — On Mar 03, 2009

Being "offended" at the Lord is a disease that

likes to hide under the guise of "tolerance." Ingratitude is ingratitude. Nobody likes to keep giving things to those who are unthankful, and neither does the Lord. Those who truly honor the Lord are the ones who are allowing his blessings to come upon this nation. "And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me." (Matt. 11:6)

By anon27626 — On Mar 03, 2009

I don't understand why everyone, Christian Claimants, feel the need to force their beliefs and views of Christianity on the world. As a Christian myself, I am aware that God and God alone is the one to judge. No one here knows who or what is correct and right as you were not around during the times of Jesus to know. All you have is a basis from a book, The Bible, which has been translated so many times, who knows what the true Bible really says. Doesn't common sense and history tell you that stories are passed down through time and everyone is guilty of adding and taking away from what was originally intended to be the main focus. The main focus being, believe in God the Creator of all, believe that God sent his only Son to teach his good word and die for our sins in which all one needs is to have faith and believe that this happened. America has fallen so far away from the basic principles of God's word which are the 10 Commandments and which in essence say "be a good person, treat *everyone* as you would want to be treated, Love *everyone* regardless of their shortcomings.....Take a moment and sit back, think about America "The Great" and think about how far from God we've fallen...Everything this country stands for is Evil, Money, Greed; Everything has to be bigger and better than everyone else. Do you really think God is happy about us being this way? Do you really think God is happy about putting his name on money which is the root of all evil according to the Bible? Before anyone can comment or complain on the simple meaning of initials, AD/BC - CE/BCE, sit and think about what your place is in God's greater scheme of things and what you can do to better yourself and not focus so much on the minute speckle of dust that you are in this huge universe of God's creation. I think that a lot of people have a huge misunderstanding of the word and meaning of Christianity and need to read a little more before knocking anyone else's faith and beliefs. Realize *you* and *you* alone answer for your own sins, not Me answering for yours and you for mine. I know where my place is in this world and where my place is with God, Do you truly know yours?

By anon25246 — On Jan 26, 2009

Psalm 14:1 "The fool hath said in his heart 'there is no God'". Yes folks, this IS yet another attempt to remove God and Jesus Christ from our world dialog. I just have one question for my fellow Christians--How come the only voices that are heard today are the voices of those who are anti-God, anti-decency, anti-freedom, and anti-America? Why are we allowing our beliefs to be gradually eliminated while a small yet vocal minority continues to successfully remove all that is good, pure, and decent and replace them with perversion, lies, hatred, and fascism. Jesus Christ came to save all mankind from Hell. How can you hate and be against someone who loved you enough that he sent his only son to die for you? (John 3:16) These people who say that the system of BCE/CE is not anti-Christ are either drinking the kool-aid, clueless, or they are outright liars themselves. In an effort to "not offend anyone," we are selling our souls to Satan.

I find it interesting that every time a scientist tries to prove there is no God, he/she always ends up proving the existence of God!

By anon24137 — On Jan 07, 2009

In short it is George Orwell 1984 and NWO.

Next will be Fahrenheit 451.

Then Animal Farm

Then Soylent Green

Finally Planet of Ape's

As documented in the Old and New Testament, the end will be AD. Thy Will Be Done....

By aes7878 — On Jan 07, 2009

I just have to say that the Declaration of Independence clearly states: "And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor." Note that the founding fathers are RELYING on the protection of God. This is not the statement of someone who thinks God will not act on his behalf. Not only did the founding fathers of this nation believe in God (who is Jesus Christ), but they relied on his help to rescue them out of the hand of the oppressor, just as the Israelites relied on him to deliver them from the Egyptians. Let me ask you ... England was the power of the day. How then, did the Americans gain the victory? It was through the divine providence of their God, Jesus Christ, in answer to their prayers. It is supremely ungrateful to accept the Lord's help and then turn your back on him after he has delivered you. All those who claim this is not a Christian nation are despising their deliverer who granted them liberty and justice.

By anon23657 — On Dec 30, 2008

I find it frustrating how misunderstood the founding of our country is today. The founding fathers took special care to NOT make the U.S. a "Christian" nation. Most of the founders were deists, in that they believed the universe had a creator, but one that does not concern himself with the daily lives of humans and does not directly intervene in human affairs (creator is essentially nature). In the 1796 treaty w/ Triploi, Article 11 clearly states the the U.S. is " is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion". This was written under Washington and signed under Adams. The U.S. was founded to be friendly and open to ALL religions and even those who (GASP) chose to not believe in a supernatural being.

By anon21545 — On Nov 17, 2008

Pure and simple: BC Means--before Christ-no matter how you want to delude it --!!! Only those who are afraid of a higher being (Jesus Christ) are the ones who can not except that they can not save themselves. Only Jesus Christ gave his life for their misguided ways! DJG

By anon20204 — On Oct 27, 2008

OK, so now when I see a piece of art work dated 250 BCE, I can just assume they mean 250 Before Christ. Or if an event in history happened in 1500 AD, I and assume this was after Christ's death. I'll still refer to Christ regardless since I'm not offended by his existence.

By anon18958 — On Oct 03, 2008

I don't care either way if it is about removing Christ or not. To me, its just confusing. I had to look this up online right now because my Early World Civilizations class uses a book that has the newer BCE/CE in it and I was getting confused. Further more, if you are going to change something, then change it. This darn book is using both BCE and BC on the same page. And not just once, a bunch of times in just the Preface of the book alone. I can't imagine how confused I'm going to get with dates now.

By anon17654 — On Sep 03, 2008

anon17239 for your info you don't get days off for rosh hashanah christmas break was changed to winter break for obvious reasons mainly being there are more than christmas during this time. america was not founded on christian beliefs we are entitled to our own religion and if were worried about offending other religions than why pick rosh hashanah?

By txgypsyrose — On Sep 01, 2008

I absolutely feel that this is simply another way to remove Christianity from the playing field. I just came back from a trip to Washington D.C. and got to see for my own eyes that our founding fathers were Christians! "We are endowed by our CREATOR with certain inalienable rights..."(The Declaration of Independence) "GOD who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of GOD? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that GOD is just. That his justice cannot sleep forever."(Inside the Thomas Jefferson Memorial) "Almighty GOD hath created...[he is] the holy author of our religion..." (Inside the Thomas Jefferson Memorial) America has been very blessed by God in our short period of existence but one has only to look at history to know the future of a country who forsakes God. The bible states that "...when the righteous are in power the people rejoice but when the wicked rule the people mourn." As Christians we need to make our voices heard in this election year! Just as Esther, we have been placed here for such a time as this!

By anon17537 — On Sep 01, 2008

In the Koran, Christ IS recognized as one of the prophets.

No need to get so worked up about the CE/BCE system, it wasn't some new invention from White Americans, it was invented "Several centuries after the AD/BC identification of historical dates became popular, a new movement developed among scientists, historians and some religious leaders."

By anon17426 — On Aug 29, 2008

This really is just yet another way to remove Christianity from plain view in this country, isn't it? I didn't encounter this "B.C.E." thing until my Humanities class yesterday, and it made me sick. But not surprised, sadly. This country was founded on Christian beliefs and now we are trying to erase any signs of it. I wish it wasn't happening, but it is. Slowly, but surely. God has blessed America. It's time for America to bless God now.

By anon17239 — On Aug 25, 2008

i believe the term BCE is just another way to omit Christ in society. i first encountered this abbreviation in my childs public school planner, i had to "google" it in order to find out the definition of it. we can celebrate Rosh Hashanah, and call it just that, however Christmas break is now "winter break" and Before Christ is Before Common Era. as Americans we are always worried about offending other religions when this country was founded on Christian beliefs.

By anon16915 — On Aug 18, 2008

Changing the classification of dates still does *not* change the fact that they are measured by the birth of Christ. So why is it a good idea to call it something other than what it really is?

By anon14860 — On Jun 25, 2008

Why would anyone get offended by suffixes after a date? The only people I've ever heard complain about them are white Americans. Haven't really heard any Jews, Muslims or any other ethnic/religious groups get so defensive.

By anon13997 — On Jun 08, 2008

I do believe this is another way to reduce the Christian influence and put all the religions on the same plain. If we have used BC/AD since the Middle Ages, why the need to change it now?? I hear it a lot on the History channel and it really "bugs" me. Christ was and is a central religious figure as well as Mohammed, and the others. If we recognize them why can't they recognize Christ???

By anon9456 — On Mar 06, 2008

Ah, this isn't new you know. It's been around since the 1600s. Someone just wants some press.

By anon6578 — On Jan 03, 2008

It absolutely has everything to do with taking Christianity out of everything. The world wants to accept everyone so badly that they are willing to shove Christianity down the drain to do so. Thereby doing the exact opposite of what they claim to want. Bottom line, they need to get Saved.

By anon6567 — On Jan 02, 2008

Do you think that the change to BCE has to do with the wave of anti-Christianity that seems to be sweeping the American media and American academia?

Michael Pollick

Michael Pollick


As a frequent contributor to Historical Index, Michael Pollick uses his passion for research and writing to cover a wide...
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