Monday, September 15, 2008

Genesis and Creation (1) Seven Days

Most Christians feel a need to put a stake in the ground with regard to the truth of Genesis One. Defending the truth is important, but we must be careful when defending Genesis that we do not defend something that is not there. An interesting example is the seven days of creation. Belief in literal days has often been used as a test for an authentic Christian.

When defending Genesis, we must be careful that we are defending something that is really in it. Before putting a stake in the ground for the “literal days”, we should be sure that we understand the message of Genesis One. The first thing to note is that for the first three days of creation, the sun and moon did not exist (these were created on the fourth day), so Genesis is not describing days as we understand them. This points to an important truth.

Days existed before man or the sun or the moon existed. This means that a pattern of time being marked off into days existed in God’s nature and character, before the existence of the sun and moon. The pattern of day and night that we experience is not derived by human experience, but is comes from the nature and personality of God himself. The concept of a day is not a human category, but existed with God, before humans existed.

The days of creation are divine days, whatever that means, and not human days. Understanding the meaning of a divine day is almost impossible for a human mind. This is confirmed in 2 Peter 3:8.

With the Lord a day is like a thousand years.
Peter was not giving a mathematical formula for deriving one from the other. He was not saying that God’s days are longer than human days, but explaining that our human days are totally different in nature from God’s experience of days. Our understanding of time is a shallow and superficial copy of God’s concept of time.

This full series is here.

1 comment:

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