Were the Days of Creation Long Periods of Time or 24 Hours?

by Max Andrews

days-of-creationThere are four literal interpretations of YOM (the Hebrew word for day).  The four definitions are (1) a portion of the daylight hours (2) the entire daylight segment of a twenty-four-hour day, (3) a twenty-four-hour day, and (4) a long but finite time period.[1]  Unlike the modern Hebrew and English, biblical Hebrew had no other word for a finite era or epoch. The figure of speech of “a day is like a thousand years” in 2 Pt. isn’t an issue, it’s a simile; I don’t advocate that 2 Peter permits and old earth interpretation in Genesis.  The four definitions of YOM are literal definitions; it’s unnecessary to say it’s non-literal.  Also, the issue of a numerical adjective in front of YOM, there is no such rule or law in Hebrew grammar that necessitates that YOM following a numerical adjective must be the twenty-four-hour interpretation of YOM. 

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The divisions of the days are “evening and morning” which signifies a division between the period of time (you’re going to have a hard time taking the text “literally” if you want to say there was evening and morning without a sun to make the distinguishing nature of evening and morning…).[2]  Even YEC’s must concede that the first three days of evening and morning are not used in the sense of referring to solar rotations, merely a division of time).  William Wilson, in his Old Testament Word Studies, explains that YOM is “frequently put for a time in general, or for a long time; a whole period under consideration…

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The Poached Egg ApologeticsWere the Days of Creation Long Periods of Time or 24 Hours? | Sententias

 

RECOMMENDED APOLOGETICS RESOURCES FOR FURTHER READING:

Seven Days That Divide the World: The Beginning According to Genesis and Science

A Biblical Case for an Old Earth

 

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