How old is the earth? Are the days of Creation literal twenty-four hour days? These questions have plagued mankind for centuries and the debate over them continues to rage, with pseudoscience and atheistic bias leading the charge for an old earth and a dismantling of God’s Word. According to the evolutionists the earth itself is about 4.5 billion years old. It is not my purpose in this article to expose the faulty science used to extrapolate this number. However, I do intend to show that we can place our faith unequivocally in what the Bible says about these things.
One, it is argued that the days of creation are not literal twenty-four hour days. But a few basic truths easily answer this question. For instance, if the days of creation were long periods of time (hundreds, thousands, millions of years), God’s creation has a problem in that He created plant life on day three but didn’t create sunlight till day four. How would plant life survive for long periods of time without necessary sunlight? Some argue that God could have acted supernaturally to keep them alive. The problem with that is God was setting in order a natural process supernaturally. It simply is not consistent with the process for God to create something naturally and then use supernatural processes to sustain it. Also, what would be the purpose of God doing this?
We also can look at the language to see that each day was a literal twenty-four hour day. Yes, the Hebrew word for translated “day” (Mwøy) can be understood figuratively as in “a space of time.” But it can also be (and is) used specifically and especially (and always) does when the frame of time is associated with it. Genesis 1.5 states, “And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.” Moses considered these to be literal days and the Sabbath “Day” was set up as a figure of the “week” God spent creating all things and the “day” He rested (Exodus 20.11; 31.17; 23.12).
Secondly, according to the biblical genealogies the earth is about 6000 years. How can we know this? One, Adam lived to be 930 years old. The days of creation cannot be thousand+ years! Adam only lives 930. Starting there to Christ is approximately 4004 years.
Finally consider that if we accept the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Bible we have to accept that the very “words” that were spoken were inspired (2 Timothy 3.16-17; 1 Corinthians 2.13; 2 Peter 1.20-21). God cannot lie (Titus 1.2; Hebrews 6.18)! We have no right to add to it or take away from it (Deuteronomy 4.2; Proverbs 30.6; Revelation 22.18-19). We have one of two choices, either believe what the Bible says in its totality and authority, or reject it entirely. We cannot pick and choose what we want to believe and or hold to. Either the Bible “says what it means and means what it says” or it doesn’t.
The Christian can be confident in both the relatively young earth and the literal twenty-four hour days of creation. We do not need to be great academics or understand the problems associated with scientific methods of dating and every infinitesimal, erroneous aspect of evolution to know how old the earth is or how long the days of Creation were. All we need is a little common sense, faith, and Bible knowledge. Be faithful!