BIBL 410 Interpretative Question 1 Liberty University
This is a previously written paper. Use this as a guide.
Does “day” mean a 24-hour period or ages? (Genesis 1:5)
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Source: Davis, John J., Paradise to Prison. Salem, WI: Sheffield Publishing Co., 1998.
Whether or not the word “day” meant a 24-hour period or ages has been the subject of many debates over the years. According to Davis, apart from the use of the Hebrew word yom, “day,” in verses 5, 8, 13, 19, 23, and 31, where it describes the days of creation, is used in at least four ways in the first two chapters of Genesis. The way that it is used in Genesis 5, Davis says, was “the period of light that began with the creation of light on the first creative day.” Davis goes on to express four different theories, which are; (1) The Literary Day Theory, (2) The Day-Age Theory, (3) The Literal-Day-with-Gaps Theory, and (4) The Revelatory Day Theory. Davis himself is an advocate of the literal day theory, which says that they were approximately twenty-four hours long. The other three theories seem to conflict with the scientific opinion. Davis’ response to that is, “If biblical truth must be sacrificed at the alter of scientific acceptance, we are left with no hope whatsoever and are reduced to a world and life view of empty materialism.” Although he takes side on the literal day theory, he also respects empirical evidence and hopes that one day in the years to come, the problem of the age of the earth and the interpretation of the days of Genesis will be put in clearer perspective.