The Creation
 Part 1 

Go to Part 2
, or scroll down the page.
Read Ted’s other commentaries. | Read Ted’s email responses about this topic.
Quotes by Jesus are in orange.


Both the belief that life on earth was started by God (“creation”), and the belief that life began on its own and evolved into higher life forms over a long period of time (“evolution”), are hotly-contested issues.  Even within the sphere of creationism itself, there are two major debates: whether God created the universe, earth, plants, animals, and people in six, literal 24-hour days (“young-earth” view), or whether He created all of it in six long epochs or “age-days” of time (“old-earth” view).  The main controversy concerning the timing of the Creation seems, primarily, to revolve around the meaning of the word “day” (which, in Hebrew is yōm) in Genesis 1.

I understand the “young-earth” view of the universe and earth very well.  Since I believe it is very important for people to understand all sides of any issue, I have studied the writings of those who strongly and adamantly advocate the young-earth perspective.  With an open mind, I also have viewed 8 hours of young-earth DVDs by Ken Ham and 8 hours of young-earth DVDs by Kent Hovind.  However, nothing has changed my belief in a very ancient universe and earth.  If anything, my point of view about the Creation issue has become even more firm and steadfast.

Paradoxically, most young-earth creationists and evolutionists have in common one significant assumption: that evolutionary changes, from one species to another, must involve a very long  period of time to take place.  Since the young-earth creationists who feel this way think that evolution might have occurred if  the earth were very old, then they must reject the possibility that the earth could be old.  Evolutionists, virtually all of whom believe in an old universe and earth, feel that a few billion years were sufficient for macroevolution, from species to species, to take place.

The fact is, spontaneous macroevolution is impossible no matter the age of the earth—even if it were trillions of years old.  In addition, life could not  have arisen out of nothing, nor even out of a “primordial slime,” without having been brought into existence by the supernatural Hand of a Being with infinitely greater intelligence than our own.  Some call this Being an “Intelligent Designer”; I call Him God, the Creator and Sustainer of all things.

Another view is the “gap” theory, which suggests that God created everything in Genesis 1:1.  Then Satan and fallen angels ruined everything that God had created.  There ensued a “gap” of time of indeterminate length—perhaps several million years—until God decided to restore, repair, and reinstate everything, beginning in Genesis 1:2, which He did during a short creative week.  I steadfastly reject this notion.  My views about this are reflected very effectively in Closing the Gap: A Scientist’s Response to the Gap Theory.

I believe that God, the Creator, created the entire seen and unseen universe and everything in it—including the heavens and the earth, as well as all life.  As such, the remainder of this commentary will deal mainly with my views of and ideas about the Creation.  Other related issues, as well as outside sources regarding Creation and Evolution, are included in the final two sections, other issues and other sources, of Part 2.  For those who feel that the first two chapters of Genesis have points of contradiction between them, read Genesis 1 vs. Genesis 2.

the Bible and science

For centuries, and up to the present time, many have believed that the early chapters of Genesis are unscientific, and/or that observations in science do not support the creative events described in Genesis.  I am convinced that these beliefs are unfounded.

God created the heavens (entire universe and heaven itself) and the earth, and then everything on the earth (Genesis 1:1-31).  If God created everything in existence, then there should be evidence and indications—“fingerprints,” as it were, identifying His unique creative signature—that He was behind it all.  In fact there are:

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.  Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge.  There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard.  Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world (Psalm 19:1-4).

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse (Romans 1:20).
As the Creator, God certainly would want mankind, His greatest creation,
  1. to know that He is the Creator, and
  2. to be able to gain valid information about Him.
Truly, the Bible—the written Word of God—is the best testament we have of His creative ability and remarkable acts (although those of the atheistic persuasion, including many scientists, would not understand this to be the case).

But God also created the means for mankind to utilize systematic research and methods by which he could organize his observations of nature into general laws.  This is science, which is not in opposition to God; on the contrary, God created science as a vitally important implement, which people could employ to confirm both the existence and the creativity of God.

bad and good science

It is true that many scientists, whether unwittingly or intentionally, have presented so-called “evidence” of several bogus scientific discoveries—for instance, indicating that certain anthropological findings are something which, in fact, they are not.  Unfortunately, this has led many, who believe in a Creator God, to look with stark skepticism upon virtually any and all  scientific discoveries, particularly when such findings strongly indicate that the universe (and the earth) are exceedingly old.

An even more extreme view is that science is a “tool of the devil,” used by atheists to deceive an ignorant world into believing that the Bible is false.  (For instance, read The Flat-out Truth and The Earth Is Not Moving, both of which imply that any “non-literal” interpretation of the Bible is false.)  In particular, the creation passages in Genesis 1 and 2 often are used as a launch pad for hostile, contentious attacks by those holding to a “young-earth” view against both

  1. those who believe in evolution (who, by and large, are atheists) rather than in creation, and
  2. those who believe in a biblical creation that took place over eons of time (the latter often being regarded as “progressive creationists,” which I see as an unsuitable and inappropriate misnomer).
Personally, I believe that many such aggressive “young-earthers” have difficulty overcoming their own various types and degrees of Mental Impasses.  The “Young-Earth” Misunderstandings and Agenda need to be understood by all Christians.

In the past, the only crude scientific methods available were unable to obtain extremely accurate measurements of the universe and of the earth, in particular their ages, incorrectly calculating the latter to be only a few thousand, a few million, or eventually a few hundred million years old.  The fact is that science now, much more precisely than at any time in the past, has enabled us to determine the ages of the universe and the earth (about 13.7 and 4.56 billion years, respectively), as well as to measure other parameters in the cosmos, which heretofore were impossible to calculate without highly technological methods and approaches.

Such noteworthy discoveries, particularly since the dawn of the twenty-first century, are a clear testament to us that God meticulously and exquisitely fine-tuned every last detail of His Creation on our behalf, during the first six “age-days” of creation.  As such, contemporary scientific evidence itself is absolute confirmation that people now, more than ever before, are without excuse in failing to believe that an Almighty Creator made everything that we see and about which we know (Psalm 19:1-4; Romans 1:20).

yōm = “day”

As noted previously in the overview, arguably the leading issue causing disgreement between “young-earth” proponents and those endorsing an “old-earth” view is a controversy over the meaning of the Hebrew word yōm, translated as “day,” in Genesis 1.  The Book of Genesis originally was written in Hebrew, but it has been translated into many other languages (including, of course, English).  Anytime that text is translated from one language to another, the correct meaning of some words and terms can be misconstrued or misinterpreted.  Such is the case of the word yōm, rendered simply as “day” in the opening passages of Genesis.

Hebrew has a relatively small vocabulary, at least when compared to English.  As such, most words in Hebrew have a broader array of literal  meanings than they do in English.  For instance, the word “day” in English has two literal meanings:

  • the hours of daylight  per 24-hour period, approximately 12 hours (varying from one latitude and season to another), or
  • a 24-hour period, from sunset to sunset (or from midnight to midnight).
However, yōm (which is the Hebrew equivalent of “day”), in addition to the above two meanings, has this literal  meaning as well:
  • a period of time other than a 24-period or the hours of daylight, often of unspecified duration.
There is no word, in biblical Hebrew, indicating a long period of time—such as an “age,” an “era,” an “epoch,” or an “eon”—which adequately could be substituted for yōm in Genesis 1 and 2.  Thus, there is no compelling reason to presume that the word “day” (which is the English translation of yōm in Genesis chapters 1 and 2) absolutely must  refer only to a 24-hour day, nor that the series of creative events by God, from “day” #1 through “day” #6, took place over a period of merely six 24-hour periods.

God does not measure time the same way we do.  Solar days were given to people, by God, so that they could measure the passage of finite time.  However, it is important to note that mankind did not even appear on the earth until late in the sixth “day” of creation. 

Basically, to say that the word “day” in Genesis 1 and 2, when translated into English (or into any other language) literally must  mean a 24-hour period of time, is incorrect.  For instance, consider verse 5 of Genesis 1:

God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night” (Genesis 1:5a).
Here, the word “day” certainly does not refer to a 24-hour period of time but, specifically, to “light.”  Moreover, the full “days” of creation, each consisting of an “evening and morning,” were not limited to being 24 hours in length.

long “days”

Just as in English, “day” can indicate an extended period of time (such as “in the day of the Great Depression” or “in George Washington’s day”), so, in Hebrew, yōm also can specify an indefinite time of unknown length.  In fact, within the creation account itself is such an example, as is quoted here from both the King James and Amplified Bible versions:

These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens (Genesis 2:4—KJ).

This is the history of the heavens and of the earth when they were created.  In the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens (Genesis 2:4—AB).
This passage is a clear example of how “day” (yōm) refers not  to a 24-hour day but, rather, to a longer period of time—in this case, the entire span of creation events.

Another example is an instance where “day” refers to a period of time (during the Millennium) after the Messiah, Jesus, has returned and will bestow great blessings upon Israel:

In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the land will be the pride and glory of the survivors in Israel (Isaiah 4:2).
Isaiah equated the “day of vengeance” with a year of time (Isaiah 34:8, 61:2, 63:4).  Hosea predicted that the Lord would revive and restore his people (Israel) after two “days” (Hosea 6:2) of Jesus’ first advent to earth.  Here, a “day” is equated with a thousand years, which is in keeping with how a day can be like a thousand years to God (Psalm 90:4; 2 Peter 3:8).

Yet other examples are in references, throughout the Old Testament, to the “day of the Lord(Isaiah 13:9-13, 34:8; Ezekiel 30:1-3; Joel 2:1,2,10,11, 2:30,31; Amos 5:18,20; Zephaniah 1:14,15,18).  This will be the future period of time beginning with unprecedented wrath from God being dispensed upon the world, during the “day of vengeance” (see The Seventh Year), followed by the glorious reign of Christ on the earth for a thousand years.  Thus, the “day of the Lord” will not  last for a mere 24 hours.


Some believe that the ordinals “first,” “second,” “third,” etc., in describing the days of creation, are sure indicators that they were days of 24 hours in length.  However, there is no rule, pertaining to Hebrew usage or grammar, which dictates that yōm, when preceded by an ordinal, must refer to a 24-hour day.

Here is an example in the Old Testament where an ordinal is used before the word “day” (yōm), and the usage of “day” in this case clearly does not indicate a period of 24 hours:

After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence (Hosea 6:2).
In this prophecy, “day” most likely represents a period of time approximating 1,000 years (read more in my description of Hosea 6:1-3).

In the New International version of the Bible, the translation, in English, of a description applied to the first creation day reads as follows:

And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day (Genesis 1:2b).
This translation, however, is incorrect.  Here is the actual word-for-word translation of this, from Hebrew into English:
And was evening and was morning day one (Genesis 1:2b).
Thus, in the original Hebrew, the text reads “day one” and does not have the ordinal “first” associated with that “day.”  There is nothing in the text that designates the length of the initial “day” of Creation; that “day” just as well could be a long period of time as it could be 24 hours.

In my opinion, the distinction between “day one” and the references to the other “days” (“second day,” “third day,” “fourth day,” etc.) indicates that the length of “day” one of Creation differed from the length of the other “days.”  In fact, I believe that “day” #1, most likely, was of much greater length than the other “days” of the Creation.

evening and morning

In Hebrew, a 24-hour day would be assumed to extend from evening to evening.  It would include the evening/night or dark hours, then the morning/day or light hours—as is described for the six creation days, “and there was evening, and there was morning” (or, literally, “evening was and morning was”: Genesis 1:5,8,13,19,23,31).  But, in Hebrew, not every yōm or “day” (of a dark/light period) has to span a 24-hour period.

Now consider an imaginary observer on the earth, watching the events of creation unfold (at least, after the earth had been created).  If the observer were located on the equator, the periods of night and day would be about 12 hours each.  However, if the location of the observer were north of the Arctic circle, the periods of night and day would be about 6 months each.  Thus, in Barrow, Alaska, the period of time of “evening and morning” is about one year.

In Genesis 1, “evening” is ’ereb and “morning” is boqer in Hebrew.  Besides “evening” and ”morning,” additional meanings of these words are “darkness” and “light.”  In the latter context, we can see God’s hand at work, in each creation day, as bringing forth something that did not exist before, or was invisible, from darkness into the light (or from nonexistence into existence) to declare His glory.

The use of “evening was and morning was,” repeatedly, was used in reference to the six creation days.  It indicates that rather than being 24-hour days, these most likely were long periods of time with distinct starting and stopping points—that is, epochs of time.  It makes sense that each “day” of the Creation would begin with “evening” and continue through the next “morning,” since the first yōm = “day” (that is, unspecified or unknown period of time) began with darkness “over the surface of the deep” (Genesis 1:2) and ended with light  (1:3), the daylight portion of that same creation “day.”  After that, the “dark” or void portion of the next “day” (yōm) would begin, out of which God again would create something new out of nothing and cause it to be visible or bring it into the “light.”

Furthermore, “darkness” often is associated with evil and “light” with good.  As such, it makes complete sense that God repeatedly called the things that He had created “good,” since they arose from "darkness" into “light” or from nothing into something, just as “morning” followed “evening.”

The author of Hebrews wrote that Christ “has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself” (Hebrews 9:26).  How could Christ have lived at the “end of the ages”—considering the fact that there were another two millennia to go from then until now—if the universe and earth had been around for only a few thousand years?  In fact, this statement seems to make sense only in light of a universe and earth that are billions of years old, where a couple of thousand years are a relatively brief period at the end of eons of time.

the seventh “day”

Interestingly, there is one “day” for which the description “evening was and morning was” is absent: the seventh “day.”  The “seventh day” is mentioned twice (Genesis 2:2,3), and in neither case is “there was evening, and there was morning” (that is, “evening was and morning was”) attached to it.  This is because the “seventh day” has not yet ended.  This “day” is a period of time of unspecified length, and it extends even into the present and beyond.

The writer of Hebrews also spoke of the “seventh day” (Hebrews 4:4).  Another word for the “seventh day” is “Today” (4:7).  God spoke to King David on that day—Today—which demonstrates that we still are in that seventh “day” of indeterminate length.  This “day” is the day (yōm) during which God continues to rest from all of His creative work.  Furthermore, this present “seventh day,” from God’s perspective, foreshadows a Sabbath “day” of rest in store for the faithful people of God, during which they will rest from their own work, just as God is resting from His creative work (4:9,10).

That Sabbath-rest is yet another period of time and is equivalent to the future thousand-year span known as the Millennium.  However, the Millennium is not an eighth day; it is the final portion of the lengthy seventh day—Today—which is thousands of years long and during which God has rested from His initial creative tasks.  The Millennium merely will be the final period of rest, 1,000 years in length (near the end of the seventh “day,” in which we presently are living), for those people who have been saved unto eternal life.  Ultimately, after the Millennium is over, the saved will enter the newly created heavens and earth (Revelation 21:1a), after the present (first) heavens and earth have perished and have been discarded (Psalm 102:25,26; Hebrews 1:10-12).

In essence, God in His amazing genius and wisdom has placed, within His own lengthy “day” of rest, a secondary “week” of creative and productive activities of His own people.  For six “days” (presumably, six millennia of time), the people of God are working to glorify God by spreading information about Him and His Messiah to others.  Then, on the seventh “day” (during the millennial reign of Jesus Christ), God’s people will rest from the work that they have been doing for Him.

God’s overall seventh day of rest will end when the things in “the first heaven and the first earth”—considered “good” or “very good” when they were created during the six “days” of the Creation (Genesis 1:4,10b,12b,18b,21b,25b,31a)—all will pass away into oblivion.  At that time, a brand new, perfect  heaven and earth will come into existence (Revelation 21:1a), in God’s most glorious creative event ever.  On the other hand, the old heaven and earth, and all the evil in them, will be burned up (2 Peter 3:7,10), most likely being tossed out like rubbish into the “fiery lake of burning sulphur” (Revelation 21:8)—an eternal testament of Satan’s utter failure in being able to govern this realm either justly or competently.

I feel that the practice of circumcision, ordained by God to take place on the eighth day following a male’s birth (Genesis 17:12; Luke 2:21), foreshadows the transition between the old and new Creations.  Physical circumcision actually was symbolic of the casting off of sin and gaining a new heart toward God (Leviticus 23:40,41; Deuteronomy 10:16).  This present creation is in its seventh “day” of existence, on God’s lengthy time schedule.  The last segment of this particular “day” will be the Millennium.  After the seven “days” of God’s creative “week” have passed, this sin-filled Creation will be “cut off” (or “circumcised”) and discarded, making way for the brand new, sinless Creation to come into existence on the eighth “day.”

the sixth “day”

A great many time-consuming events took place on the sixth “day” of the Creation.  God made or created the following, during that particular “day”:

  • “livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind” (Genesis 1:24);
  • “wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds” (1:25);
  • “man in his own image, in the image of God he created him” (1:27); and
  • “trees [to] grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food” (2:9).
God also did these things on that sixth “day”:
  • “planted a garden in the east, in Eden” (Genesis 2:8a);
  • “took the man [Adam] and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it” (2:15);
  • brought to Adam “all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.  So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field” (2:19,20); and
  • “caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs [or took part of the man’s side] and closed up the place with flesh.  Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib [or part] he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man” (2:21,22).
Thus, on this one particular creative “day,” God created countless numbers of animals; then created the Garden of Eden where numerous types of trees grew, in time, out of the ground; then created Adam and, ultimately, Eve.  Adam, in turn, meticulously gardened all of the plants, carefully studied all of the animals, prudently named the animals, and learned how to relate to Eve.

Upon seeing Eve, Adam’s initial exclamation was “Happa’am,” which can be translated “now at last,” “now finally,” or “now at length.”  Here are the translations, according to the New Living Translation and The Message Bibles:

At last!” Adam exclaimed.  “She is part of my own flesh and bone!  She will be called ‘woman,’ because she was taken out of a man” (Genesis 2:23—NLT).

Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man” (Genesis 2:23—TM).
Here, very likely, is an indication that an ample period of time (weeks, months, or even several years) had passed since Adam’s own creation had taken place.  After having spent a substantial amount of time tending the garden and naming the animals, he was delighted that, “at last,” someone like himself finally had been made to become his helper and partner.

Adam was placed in the garden (and tended systematically to all of it as God, presumably, had instructed him to do), then methodically named all of the untold quantity of livestock, birds of the air, and beasts of the field that were brought to him.  In all likelihood, Adam performed his tasks in daylight hours—which, if done during one, single 24-hour day, would have been about half of that amount of time.

There is no biblical indication that, before Adam sinned, he executed his tasks at super-human speed, nor that he possessed phenomenal intelligence or wisdom, as some suggest in attempting to explain how he carried out the great quantity of assignments and projects God had given to him, allegedly within a single solar day.  The idea that all  of these activities, by both God and Adam, would have taken place in 24 hours (or, even more implausibly, 12 hours of daylight) is so incredible as to defy judicious reasoning.

the fourth and third “days”

Many have questioned how God could have created the sun (as well as the moon) on the fourth “day” if the vegetation created on the third “day” would have required light and heat to exist.  Here is the passage in question:

God made two great lights—the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night.  He also made the stars.  God set them in the expanse of the sky to give light on the earth, to govern the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness.  And God saw that it was good.  And there was evening, and there was morning—the fourth day (Genesis 1:16-19).
Upon a casual reading of this passage in English, it appears as though it is indicating that the sun and moon came into existence on the fourth creation “day.”  However, as seen in the yōm = “day” section, the meanings of words in the original Hebrew, not in English, must be examined.

The word ’asa is the Hebrew verb for “made” in the above passage; it is the pluperfect form of the verb, indicating action already completed.  That is, the sun, moon, and stars already had been made at some point in the past (in fact, on the first creation “day”).  God previously had set them in the sky to be light-giving sources for the earth.  Note that the idea of separating light from darkness is found both in Genesis 1:4b (on the first “day”) and in 1:18a (on the fourth “day”).

The Lord spoke the heavens into existence, and then all of the stars (starry host) were formed, with the Word of His mouth (Genesis 1:1; Psalm 33:6).  Then, after making the earth, God’s Holy Spirit situated Himself at the earth’s surface, hovering over the waters (Genesis 1:2b).  This location, rather than at a location somewhere out in space, is the observation point (looking up into the sky) for the remainder of Genesis 1.

In any newly-formed solar system, a star or sun is formed first, and eventually the debris orbiting around it coalesces into planets and other bodies.  Initially, light from the sun is almost completely blocked from reaching the surface of any planet, due to closely packed interplanetary debris and a dense, opaque atmospheric layer around each planet.  So relatively early on “day” one, our sun was formed as part of the starry host, which occurred after the heavens were created.  Then, later on that first “day,” the earth was formed as part of our sun’s accretion disk.

At the outset, the earth was enshrouded in thick darkness (Job 38:4,9) and, of course, was empty or devoid of any type of life (Genesis 1:2a).  As earth’s atmosphere began to become less condensed, it became translucent, allowing some of the sun’s light to penetrate through to the earth’s surface (1:3).  On the fourth “day,” the sun, moon, and stars clearly were observable on earth through a mostly transparent atmosphere (1:14-19)—an earth ready for birds, animals, and ultimately humans.

During the third “day,” tectonic forces in the earth, over long periods of time, caused dry land to be raised above the global water level.  Then, gradually, a spreading of the land caused the water to be gathered into seas and oceans (1:9,10) or, figuratively, into “jars” and “storehouses” (Psalm 33:7).

Then vegetation was able to grow on the dry land (Genesis 1:11,12a), which was possible only with diffuse light from the sun being able to reach the earth’s surface.  And as the atmosphere began to thin further, it became transparent enough for the sun, moon, and stars—fashioned long before that point—to be seen from the surface of the earth, on the fourth creation “day” (1:14,15).  All of this had to have taken a very long time, not 24 hours.

God’s “week”

It has been claimed by many who embrace the idea of 24-hour days of creation that the Fourth Commandment, as listed in Exodus, supports their view:

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.  Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God.  On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates.  For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day.  Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy (Exodus 20:8-11).
The idea is that because God compared a man’s work week, consisting of six 24-hour days plus a 24-hour Sabbath of rest, to His “week” of the Creation, then the latter must  have encompassed seven 24-hour days.  However, it has been shown that we presently are in the seventh “day” of God’s “week”; and, so far, this “day” has lasted thousands of years.  Also, there are cases where a “Sabbath,” or a period of rest/freedom following a sequence of six periods of work, is a year in length (Exodus 21:2; Leviticus 25:2-4).

In addition, some claim that the meaning of the “first occurrence” of a word dictates its meaning in every case thereafter.  The idea is, somehow, that the Ten Commandments written in stone and given by God to Moses precluded, in time, the writing of any of the Torah by Moses.

Firstly, however, the Fourth Commandment has been shown to be a passage describing God’s guideline or template of doing something for six consecutive periods of time and ceasing from that activity for one (the seventh) period.  Secondly, an assumption is made that Moses never scripted any portion of Genesis or Exodus prior to God’s giving of the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai.  There is no definitive evidence for the latter.

Would God have expected Moses to have written everything contained in Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, all at once, at the very end of his life?  Could not Moses have “taken notes” of major events along the way, such as his experience with the burning bush (Exodus 3:1-15)?  For instance, we know of at least one place where God commanded Moses to write something about the Amalekites on a scroll (17:14-16).  So could not Moses have been told, by God, about the sequence of creation events and recorded them before the Ten Commandments were written?  I feel this not only is possible but probable.

The comparison of God’s creative “week” with man’s week, as part of the description of the Fourth Commandment, is a reference to a sequential pattern of doing something (typically, but not limited to, working) for six periods of time and ceasing or resting on the seventh.  A day or a year of rest (Sabbath) is suitable for people or land; whereas, a much longer period of time for a Sabbath-rest is appropriate for God.  The fact that God’s Sabbath-rest (the seventh “day”) is a long period of time, which still continues, is an indication that the first six creative days probably were at least  as long as the seventh—and, very likely, were a great deal longer.

death and decay before sin

A claim made by “young-earth” creationists is that no death nor decay, of any kind, existed prior to Eve and Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:6).  They insist, therefore, that human disobedience and rebelliousness toward God ruined all  of God’s “perfect” Creation.  Here is their “logic”:

  • The basic idea is that death for everything in Creation began with Eve and Adam’s sin, prior to which nothing had died yet.
  • To minimize the chances of death prior to the original sin of Eve and Adam, the “days” of creation must have been literal, 24-hour days, thus minimizing the chance of death of any type occurring prior to “day” six.  (On the other hand, if the universe and earth happen to be billions of years old, and if the “days” of creation actually are lengthy eras of time, then that would seem to enhance the chances of something, somewhere dying prior to creation “day” six.)
  • No death prior to creation “day” six would go hand-in-hand with the notion that the universe and earth, originally, were perfect.  (I disagree with the basic premise that this Creation originally was “perfect”—see “very good” vs. “perfect” and an imperfect Creation.)
  • Thus, Eve and Adam’s original sin instantly changed God’s perfect Creation into an imperfect one, in which death reigned for all living things.

There are biblical passages to which “young-earth” creationists point, in an attempt to “prove” that death entered all  of Creation via the original sin of Eve and Adam.  Three of these verses are Romans 5:12, Romans 8:22, and 1 Corinthians 15:21,22.

Romans 5:12

Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned... (Romans 5:12).
This verse, though, speaks of Adam’s original sin and how, through that sin, sin entered the world of mankind.  As a result, all men have sinned.  Moreover,
Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men (Romans 5:18).
Again, all men are condemned due to the trespass of Adam.  Furthermore, all men are capable of being justified by the righteous act of one man—Jesus’ death on the cross.

Because the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23a), and because all men have sinned, then death is the penalty mankind  must pay, due to sin.  In no way does this imply that death came to the animal or plant kingdoms because of sin.

The wages of each person’s sin is the death of that person.  Animals and plants cannot sin; they are incapable of disobedience and rebellion against God, and God does not hold them personally responsible for their actions.  Animals and plants lived and died  on the earth to help prepare the earth for the onset of mankind (beginning with Adam and Eve) into the world, on the sixth “day” of creation.

Of all of God’s creatures, Adam and Eve were the only ones who had the opportunity to escape death.  They alone were made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26a,27a) and were given the capacity to live forever, had they chosen not to sin.

Romans 8:22

We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time (Romans 8:22).
This verse, if anything, lends credence to the idea that pain and death have been a part of the animal and plant kingdoms since their beginnings, prior to the creation of Adam and Eve and their subsequent sin.  There certainly is no indication that Adam and Eve’s original sin was responsible for the suffering and death of animals and plants.

Consider the reading of this verse in the context  of the verses before it:

19 The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed.  20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope  21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.  22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time (Romans 8:19-22).
The purpose of this Creation, from the very beginning, has been to prepare for, separate out, and reveal God’s chosen children who, with Christ, ultimately will reign over it (Revelation 5:10, 20:4d,6b).  From the beginning, this Creation has been subjected to frustration and decay—not  by its own choice (including not  by the choice of Adam and Eve, created beings, to sin), but by the will of God who created it.  The entire universe began to decay as soon as it was created, in accordance with the process of entropy and the second law of thermodynamics, instilled into it from the start (see an imperfect Creation).

Had this universe been created in a “perfect” state, we would have to assume that there was no waste, of any type, prior to Adam and Eve’s disobedience and sin.  Yet, are we to assume that the trillions of stars in the universe originally were infinitely stable but, in an instant of time (upon Adam and Eve’s sin), were converted into a less efficient state of nuclear fusion?

On a smaller and more familiar scale, is it likely that every bird, fish, and mammal on earth (including Adam and Eve) instantly developed digestive and elimination systems (including the internal and external anatomical changes involved), enabling them to process food and excrete waste products on a daily basis?  When Adam and Eve ate something before they sinned, did the food just disappear as soon as they swallowed it?  No.  It was digested; part of it nourished their bodies, and part of it decayed and was eliminated, just as the same process happens to food when we eat it now.  This is because Adam and Eve lived in an imperfect, decaying universe, just as we do today.  I find such proposals to the contrary much too incredible to accept.

1 Corinthians 15:21,22

For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man.  For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive (1 Corinthians 15:21,22).
These two verses have nothing to do with the death of animals and plants, as there is no clear indication in the Bible as to whether or not there will be a future resurrection from the dead for animals and plants.  Christ rose from the dead so that mankind  could be redeemed from the death that comes from sin.  As in Adam, all people die, so in Christ all people will be made alive, whether resurrected unto eternal life or eternal death (the second death).

To understand the full message of these verses, in context, it is important to read them along with  the two verses (20 and 23) immediately before and after them:

20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.  21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man.  22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.  23 But each in his own turn:  Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him (1 Corinthians 15:20-23).
Christ is not the firstfruits from the dead of animals and plants, but of humans.  Only those who have died in Him will be raised in Him.

All birth involves anguish and labor (see pain and work), and there always is a high price to pay for glory, freedom, and ultimate happiness.  From its inception, the primary function of this Creation, with its countless trials and tribulations, and immeasurable pain and suffering, has been to give birth to those who fully will understand and accept God’s righteous ways—the first group of whom will be those glorified at the Rapture.  This “elect” group of people will be changed into perfected, incorruptible, imperishable forms to rule and reign with Jesus during the Millennium—and, even more importantly, to exist with God throughout eternity in the realm of the new Creation (see old and new Creations).

tenuous assumptions

The “Young-Earth” Misunderstandings and Agenda cause creationists who embrace the “young-earth” view to find, in nature, examples of “big” things that took relatively short periods of time to transpire.  Then, from there, it is a common strategy to extrapolate to a larger, global scale, making generalized assumptions that are unsubstantiated scientifically.

It is pointed out, for instance, that a new river canyon was formed in one day (March 19, 1982), subsequent to the explosion of Mount St. Helens in 1980.  The claim is made, then, that this is a demonstration of how the Grand Canyon “must” have been formed in a short period of time, due to a sudden, massive flow of water resulting from the Great Flood.

Another example, on a small scale, is pointing out a pipe protruding from the ground, with water rising up through the pipe and running down the sides.  A large accumulation of limestone and other minerals are observed to be deposited around the pipe, over a period of only a few months.  This is presented as “evidence” that Carlsbad Caverns “must” have taken a relatively short period of time to form—not untold millions of years, which is explained by geologists to have taken place.

The type of reasoning used in these cases is “inductive,” where something specific is observed and, from there, a generalized theory about how things work is formulated.  On the other hand, the majority of valid scientific experimentation involves more of a “deductive” process, where a theory is put forth, hypotheses are tested, and the observations noted from this scientific method lead to specific conclusions.

Young-earth creationists often use the argument that if God is as powerful as Christians believe He is, it would not have required billions of years for Him to create the universe and everything in it.  He easily could have done it in six solar days.  I totally agree.  Yet if God is infinitely powerful, which I have no doubt that He is, then why did He not create the entire universe in six minutes, in six nanoseconds, or even instantaneously?  One can see that the six 24-hour day theory itself places God’s act of creation into a brief duration.  Six 24-hour days, from a human’s finite perspective, is a short period of time; however, several billion years, from God’s infinite perspective, also is a short period of time.

Furthermore, from the perspective of human kind, the phrases “little while” of Haggai 2:6 and “coming soon” of Revelation 22:7,12,20 do not seem to “add up” if the world is only a few thousand years old.  Yet, living in the final few millennia of extremely lengthy eons of time, and considering the infinite frame of reference of God, who spoke those words, they make complete sense.

Go to Part 2

Ted’s Bible Commentaries
and Other Links

Summary of Commentaries
Who Is God? Was Jesus God? Good Thursday
The Chronology of Revelation The Rapture The Endtimes
The Final Battles The Beasts  The Creation 
 Part 1 
God’s Covenant: with Israel or the Church?    End of the Age: 2020?
My Beliefs and Faith
Bible Question Emails
and Ted’s Responses
The Holy Bible
Pride Island
(a novel by Ted)
Creation ... Counterfeits ... and the 70th Week Bible Study
Ted’s Homepage Anatomy, Physiology & Pathology
of the Human Eye

Comments or questions?  Email Me.


Copyright © 2006– by Ted M. Montgomery, O.D.  Most rights reserved.

Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®
Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.