The Affirmation of the Scripture with regard to the Creation Account
The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever. (Isaiah 40:8)
At the Creation Studies Institute, we believe the inerrant word of God clearly states that the entire cosmos, including all the matter and energy contained therein, was created in six days. We identify these days of creation as six 24-hour periods of time. God could have created everything instantaneously fully formed, but as many Bible scholars have indicated with reference to the establishment of the Sabbath, God purposely did this to sanctify the Sabbath and designate it as holy. God gave the children of Israel instructions in the Mosaic Covenant clearly specifying the reason for the Sabbath as the following verse indicates.
“For in six days (yom) the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day (yom). Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” (Ex. 20:11)
This instruction was communicated in the context of the commandments of God. It was given as a model for God’s people to pattern their lives after, “And God spoke all these words,” Exodus 20:1. It is God’s Word that we honor as he spoke it. We take the meaning to be understood within the cultural and historical context in which it was given. The context here is clearly that of a literal 24-hour/day week, not in thousands or millions or billions of years.
The Scripture also established the Sabbath as a perpetual sign of His Covenant with the Israelite nation. It was to be for a sign, an instruction that subsequent generations were to follow.
“It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days (yom) the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day (yom) He rested and was refreshed.” (Ex. 31:17)
God creates with purpose. He always magnifies His glory and establishes His presence in the lives of His children. He does this so we may experience Him as truly real to us as we live our daily lives. In this passage, we are reminded that God inscribed the stone tablets of the Law miraculously as a true testimony of His word.
When the LORD finished speaking to Moses on Mount Sinai, He gave him the two tablets of the testimony, the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God. (Ex. 31:18)
The literal days of creation were produced for the purpose of seeing a divine order in a seven day week. A week where six days of work could be followed by a day of rest, designed so that the Holy Sabbath day would be sanctified, set apart for the spiritual rest of God’s people, just as God Himself rested on the seventh day from all His labors. To eliminate the understanding of a literal 24-hour day from Genesis one, would be a violation of God’s perpetual covenant as well as an example of shoddy biblical hermeneutics.
Contrary to other parts of Genesis that are witnessed by man, Genesis one is an account coming directly from God Himself. It is God’s actual spoken word as recorded in the expression “God said.” This formula is repeated 10 times in the same chapter of Genesis. The repetition speaks clearly that God is evoking the exact literal account of His creation in a chronology of six “literal” 24-hour days.
The Hebrew word for day, yom, in this context can only mean what we at the Creation Studies Institute recognize as a 24 hour period of time. In fact, the Hebrew word yom always means a determinate amount of time or a never ending string of days, e.g. eternity. It will be translated either as a 24 hour day, a collection of 24 hour days, e.g. a season, or a never ending collection of days, e.g. forever. Even when used in terms of the coming Judgment of God, e.g. the day of the Lord, it is referring to the Time of Jacob’s Trouble, Jer. 30:7 a.k.a. the Great Tribulation, Rev. 7:15. These are not indefinite timeframes. Even when “yom” is translated forever, this is still a timeframe, albeit open-ended towards the future. It is being used in context of “endless” days that should not be substituted to support the limited ages, e.g. the millions to billions years of evolutionary time.
According to Robert Young’s Analytical Concordance to the Bible (First Published 1879) ‘yom’ is the Hebrew word for ‘day’. Young’s index-lexicon to the Old Testament reveals that in the King James Version, yom is predominantly translated as ‘day’ (1167 occurrences), followed by ‘time’ (65 occurrences) (Young, 1985). The word was also infrequently translated as ‘weather’, ‘daily’, ‘remain’ and ‘when’. Occasionally the word is used to indicate an eternal timeframe or endless days.
“For your servant became surety for the lad to my father, saying, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, then let me bear the blame before my father forever (yom).’ (Gen. 44:32)
“So you shall keep His statutes and His commandments which I am giving you today, that it may go well with you and with your children after you, and that you may live long on the land which the LORD your God is giving you for all time (yom).” (Deut. 4:40)
When Day-Age theorists attempt to spin the usage of the word “yom” so it can be substituted for the millions or even billions of years of evolutionary time, they are stretching the meaning of the word beyond its biblical context. The definition of endless days cannot be used to support the epochs of evolutionary time. Even the Paleozoic, Mesozoic, or other so-called ages of evolution are themselves finite in nature. They are not eternal, and therefore attributing this meaning of the word yom in support of the deep time of evolutionary theory is erroneous.
In the Genesis account of creation, each of the Hebrew numberings expressed by “yom” + ordinal number used in Genesis 1:5 (Alef), Genesis 1:8 (Bet), Genesis 1:13 (Gimel), Genesis 1:19 (Dalet); Genesis 1:23 (He) and Genesis 1:31(Vov) (e.g. five of the six days of creation) comprises a sequence that appears only one time in the Bible. The inclusion of the ordinal numbers strongly implies a sequence of time being linked to these 24 hour days, e.g. the “1” day, the “2” day, the “3” day, etc.
We remain completely dedicated to the inerrancy of the Word of God. We will not compromise the Word of God in the false hope that compromise in the Genesis account of creation will lead to willingness by the world to examine the claims made in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Compromise with the world is not an option for believers, I John 2:15-17.
The creation described in the book of Genesis was a supernatural event. One of the amazing characteristics of that seminal event was that all living things were created fully mature. Adam and Eve were created as adults. Like all life forms they were genetically pre-programmed to reproduce themselves “according to their own kind.”An expression used in the Genesis account 16 times! Should we keep silent about the resurrection of the Messiah because it was clearly a supernatural event that most people would believe is impossible? Should we remove the Virgin Birth from our creeds and statements of faith because it too was a miraculous event that transcended the laws of nature? God who created the laws of nature to nurture and sustain life can also suspend those laws if He so desires.
We say no to all forms of compromise where the Word of God is concerned. Our view of science is based upon empirical observable data, not on some naturalistic and materialistic worldview that cannot be observed as happening in the past, and cannot be observed as happening in the present. We will remain firm in our defense of the faith and the literal interpretation of God’s word. We affirm the sound principles of biblical hermeneutics expounded in “The Golden Rule of Biblical Interpretation” developed by the late Dr. David Cooper, Th.M., Ph.D., Litt.D.
“When the plain sense of Scripture makes common sense, seek no other sense; therefore take every word at its primary, ordinary, usual, literal meaning, unless the facts of the immediate context, studied in the light of related passages and axiomatic and fundamental truths, indicate clearly otherwise.” (Cooper, 1947)
We will stand with the Apostle John in his proclamation of the identity of the Messiah in the gospel that bears his name. A gospel that begins by making a clear reference to Genesis 1:1.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. (Gen. 1:1)
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. (John 1:1-5)
Steve Rowitt, Th.M., Ph.D. (c)
Chief Technical Advisor
Creation Studies Institute