This year is 2017.
But wait, have we only had 2016 years so far. Isn't the earth older than that?
Then why do we write this date on our daily newspapers, letters, shopping dockets, birth, marriage and death certificates.
And what triggered the first year?
Nothing less than the birth of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, the promised Deliverer, from God.
The term "Anno Domini" is used to mark the year of our Lord. This is the beginning of the Christian era. Our history texts mark events during this time with the abbreviation "AD".
All years before AD have been labelled "BC" ... before Christ. They are numbered backwards from the time of Jesus' birth. For example, Augustus Caesar was born before Jesus Christ but he died after Jesus' birth. So his life is recorded as 63BC - AD14.
And each time we write the date (this year with 2017), it serves as a reminder of the importance of Jesus to the whole world. People many, many hundreds of years ago saw fit to record history's dates around the coming of the Son of God to earth!
So what's in a date? Much more than we might have first thought!?
BC. Before Christ.
AD. Anno Domini (meaning the year of our Lord).
Since late in the 20th century, use of CE (Common/Current Era) and BCE (Before Common/Current Era) has been popularised by people wishing to emphasize secularism or sensitivity to non-Christians, because it does not make use of religious titles for Jesus, such as "Christ" and Dominus (Lord), which are used in the BC/AD explanation.