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Many in the young-earth community point to Exodus 20:9-11 as evidence for a creation week of 24-hour days: For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day.

Reference to the Sabbath in Exodus 20 illustrates God’s pattern of six days of work and one day of rest, not their duration: God’s six yôms (epochs) of creating and one of rest. The land’s six years of cultivation and one year of rest (Leviticus 25:4).

Concerning the recurring [evening and morning] formula at the end of each creative day…there were definite and distinct stages in God’s creational procedure…it serves as no real evidence for a literal twenty-four-hour day concept on the part of the biblical author.-Hebrew linguist Gleason Archer Similarly, YECs claim “day” (yôm) accompanied by the phrase “and there was evening and there was morning” necessitates a 24-hour day interpretation.

Gresham Machen (1881-1937), considered the last of the great orthodox Princeton theologians: “It is certainly not necessary to think that the six days spoken of in that first chapter of the Bible are intended to be six days of twenty four hours each.

We may think of them rather as very long periods of time.”[17]* Edward J.

While it is commonly thought that evening/morning represents a “day,” Collins says “Logically, this is nonsense [since] a day must describe 24 hours or at least a period of daylight.” He further states “and there was evening, and there was morning” brackets the night and marks the end points of each workday of God.14Furthermore, the seventh day lacks the concluding refrain, “and there was evening and there was morning,” suggesting a non-ending day.

The ongoing nature of the seventh day is implied in Hebrews 4:1-11, which describes God’s Sabbath rest: “Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands…” (Hebrews 4:1).

Rich Deem One of the most fundamental doctrines held dear by Christians is God’s creation of the world and all living creatures. 1851-1921).1* 20th century Theologians: Gleason Archer and R. John Collins (Chairman, Old Testament Committee, The ESV Bible; Ph. Packer, Nancy Pearcey, Vern Poythress, Earl Radmacher (President Emeritus, Western Seminary), Lee Strobel (author of The Case for Christ, The Case for a Creator), and Dallas Willard.3So what exactly do old-earth creationists believe?

Yet among evangelicals, an ongoing controversy exists regarding the age of the earth and when God created the universe and life. “old-earth” debate is one of the most polarizing and divisive issues within the Christian community. Laird Harris (co-authors, Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament), James Montgomery Boice (Chairman of the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy), Francis Schaeffer (founder of L’Abri Fellowship), R. D., Hebrew linguistics), Chuck Colson, Paul Copan, William Lane Craig, Norman Geisler (author of numerous books, including Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics), Wayne Grudem (General editor, The ESV Study Bible; author, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine), Hank Hannegraff (Bible Answer Man), Jack Hayford, Walter Kaiser (President Emeritus, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary), Phillip E. Below are the fundamental beliefs of old-earth (“day-age”) creationism.Gleason Archer notes, “By no means does this demonstrate that 24-hour intervals were involved in the first six ‘days,’ any more than the eight-day celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles proves that the wilderness wanderings under Moses occupied only eight days.”15Here are the views of several respected scholars on the meaning of the creation “day” (yôm):* R. Torrey (1856-1928), founder of Talbot Seminary and editor of The Fundamentals (12 volumes, published in 1910): “Anyone who is at all familiar with the Bible and the way the Bible uses words, knows that the use of the word ‘day’ is not limited to twenty-four hours.It is frequently used to denote a period of entirely undefined length…There is no necessity whatsoever for interpreting the days of Genesis 1 as solar days of twenty-four hours length.”16* J.In my judgment the earth and universe are indeed billions of years old.”20Both young-earth and old-earth creationists believe the Bible is inspired and defend their views as being literal. Bruce Waltke asserts young-earth exegesis is hindered by an adherence to a “woodenly literal” reading of Genesis.21 Gordon Wenham concurs: “Six days has been seized on and interpreted over-literally, with the result that science and Scripture have been pitted against each other instead of being seen as complementary.”22The when of creation The Bible does not specify the age of creation.The YEC belief that God created the world 6,000 years ago originated from a mid-17th century examination of the Genesis genealogies by Archbishop James Ussher and theologian John Lightfoot.For instance, The Wycliffe Bible Commentary states, “These are not ordinary days bounded by minutes and hours, but days of God…The beginning of each act of creation is called morning, and the close of that specific divine act is called evening.”11 Noted Hebrew linguist Gleason Archer concurs: “Concerning the recurring [evening and morning] formula at the end of each creative day…there were definite and distinct stages in God’s creational procedure…it serves as no real evidence for a literal twenty-four-hour day concept on the part of the biblical author.”12 Other Hebrew language scholars (C.

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