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  • Genesis 1:5

    In Genesis 1:5 do the words "And the evening and the morning were the first day." definately refer to a twenty four hour period? If not, what? Thanks for any info.

  • #2
    Originally posted by FranA View Post
    In Genesis 1:5 do the words "And the evening and the morning were the first day." definately refer to a twenty four hour period? If not, what? Thanks for any info.


    24 hours? not so sure, we can't say for sure since no one knows for sure. The hours could have been longer back then.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Scottizzle View Post
      24 hours? not so sure, we can't say for sure since no one knows for sure. The hours could have been longer back then.
      Since the earth's rotation is constantly slowing, the the days are longer now than they were back then.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Duane Morse View Post
        Since the earth's rotation is constantly slowing, the the days are longer now than they were back then.

        Who is to say it was slower or faster before the flood?

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        • #5
          Please explain how the flood would have sped up the rotation of the planet?

          If anything, the frictional forces would have slowed it down at an even greater rate.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Duane Morse View Post
            Please explain how the flood would have sped up the rotation of the planet?

            If anything, the frictional forces would have slowed it down at an even greater rate.

            I have no idea. Just an idea.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by FranA View Post
              In Genesis 1:5 do the words "And the evening and the morning were the first day." definately refer to a twenty four hour period? If not, what? Thanks for any info.
              Hebrew grammar rules would say so.
              The inclusion of 'morning' or 'evening' in combination with day (yom) in Hebrew signify a normal day (we would say 24 hours. But it would have been shorter back then, like Duane mentioned).

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Duane Morse View Post
                Please explain how the flood would have sped up the rotation of the planet?

                If anything, the frictional forces would have slowed it down at an even greater rate.

                Slower spinning = longer days right?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by FranA View Post
                  In Genesis 1:5 do the words "And the evening and the morning were the first day." definately refer to a twenty four hour period? If not, what? Thanks for any info.
                  There's no way to say for sure, but there is evidence within Genesis 1 that it might have been a literal 24-hour period.

                  Now, first of all... Genesis starts off with God creating the heavens and earth, and then He speaks light into existence. But it wasn't even until the fourth day that He created the sun and moon and stars! A "day" to us is marked by one full rotation of the earth, and a year is marked by one full revolution of the earth around the sun. But if there was no sun yet for three days, then were those three days even literally the same "days" we know? Maybe not.

                  But:

                  On the fourth day of creation God created the sun and moon and stars, and He said they were to serve as markers for the "seasons and days and years." The three days that had already passed by this point could very well have been literal days, because God said that on the fourth day He had created the markers for when the earth had rotated a full day, not that on the fourth day He had created what a full day even was.

                  Day 1 - Earth and heavens and light and darkness.
                  Day 2 ...
                  Day 3 ...
                  Day 4 - Sun and moon and stars, to govern day and night, and to mark the passing of a day and a season and a year.
                  etc.

                  But then again... how could there be "day" and "night" and "evening and morning" if the sun and moon and stars had not yet been created to give off the light on the earth that would be called "day" and the shadow that would be called "night," and the passing from one to the other that would be called "evening and morning." I think there's more to the creation account than meets the word-for-word eye. For instance, did you notice that each third day is a counterpart? Day 1 corresponds to Day 4 (creation of light and dark and their separation, and creation of light-giving sources and the separation of light and dark), Day 2 corresponds to Day 5 (creation of the waters and the sky, and creation of water-dwelling animals and sky-dwelling animals), Day 3 corresponds to Day 6 (creation of land and plants, and creation of the land-dwelling, plant-eating animals and humans). Perhaps God did it on purpose to show us a pattern, or maybe there's something else there?
                  To This Day

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Scottizzle View Post
                    Slower spinning = longer days right?
                    Right, which means that the days were shorter in the past.

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                    • #11
                      God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day. (Genesis 1:5 RSV)



                      What does this mean? Take this declaration at a three-fold level. At the physical level, the material level, this clearly indicates that God began the process of rotation, for it is the rotating of the earth upon its axis that makes night and day, darkness and light.

                      When an astronaut goes up and zooms around the earth in orbit, he passes through alternating periods of night and day because both he and the earth are rotating.

                      What is this strange function? It is an intriguing problem in science as to why everything in the universe revolves or rotates. Science has long been seeking the explanation for this motion, which they call angular momentum.

                      One of the difficult problems of science is not only to explain why everything rotates but also to explain why occasionally they find an object that, in an apparently perverse way, rotates the wrong way, as some of the moons of certain planets do, and as even some of the planets themselves. Retrograde motion is what the scientists call it.

                      Within matter there is a force, somewhat akin to gravitation, which compels two bodies that approach one another to revolve around a common center. On the physical level that is what produces light and darkness.

                      It is true of everything in the universe, without exception, whether it be the great blazing suns of space or the electrons in the atom.

                      At the psychic level, the level of the soul, the mental and emotional level, this declaration about God separating the light from the darkness implies the beginning of the cycles of the ages.

                      Tim of the seems to have a rotary motion as well, and ages come and go, both within the reckoning of man and even before man appeared upon the earth.

                      There is suggested a possible rotation of the ages, each one having a period of moral light and darkness. It is not physical light we are speaking of, but moral, dealing with knowledge in some way.

                      In Paul's letter to the Romans, in Chapter 13, he says to Christians, "...you know what hour it is, how it is full time now for you to wake from sleep" (Romans 13:11b RSV), "...the night is far gone, the day is at hand," (Romans 13:12a RSV).

                      He is referring to the approaching nearness of a new age, the morning of God's eternal day when there will be night no more.

                      Then, on the spiritual level, there is the recognition of the existence of both good and evil. God says the light is good, i.e., there is something in the universe, he says, which comes from me.

                      Whatever it is, it is good because it is of him; it partakes of his character and nature. But there is also in the universe that which is not of him, that which is the opposite of what he has given.

                      That is "not good," that is darkness. These terms, light and darkness, are constantly played against one another all the way through the record of Scripture, and all the way through the record of man.

                      This does not refer, of course, to a duality of gods, though it appears so from man's point of view. But there are not two gods. The devil is subject to God, though, from our point of view, there is an apparent stand-off between these two forces.

                      This play between two forces gives us our key to the last thing to note in this passage, the phrase, "there was evening and there was morning, one day." One of the questions everyone asks about Genesis is, "How long are these days of Genesis 1? Are they 24-hour days during which God created the earth, i.e., actually one literal week?

                      Or do they represent long and indefinite ages of time, as science would suggest today, at its present level of knowledge?" It is interesting that, if we apply the key that we have just discovered, we will see that all three levels could be involved.

                      We are all familiar with a 24-hour day which includes an evening and a morning. There are also ages of time which, even in the reckoning of man, would include what could be regarded as darkness and light -- times of ignorance and relative knowledge.

                      Even in our own day we speak of "the Dark Ages." And there is an ultimate spiritual meaning which involves the realities of heaven and hell -- that which is of God and that which is opposed to God, that which is light with no darkness at all, and that which is nothing but darkness with no light at all.

                      Since the material or physical level is usually the symbol of the others, I would think that, just as in the case of the Sabbath, the 24-hour day is intended to be a reminder to us of the great ages during which God created the heavens and the earth.

                      The present recurring 24-hour day is a symbolic microcosm of past ages, just as the Sabbath day was given to man as a symbol to remind him of a spiritual and emotional rest that could be his.

                      If that be the case, then we do not have 24-hour day periods in Genesis 1, but rather an indefinite length of time much more descriptively termed an age, or an epoch, of time.

                      But each is to be characterized by an evening and a morning. Note the order of that. The evening comes first. We Westerners, with our penchant for compromise, have divided the day so that it is a sandwich, beginning with a period of darkness, then a period of light in between, and finally another period of darkness.

                      We begin our day at midnight. But in the Eastern world the day begins at sunset so that each day starts with an evening and ends with a period of light.

                      That is in line with this revelation of the way God works. No matter whether it be man's day upon earth, an age of time, or a 24-hour period, each begins with a period of darkness, and then a period of light.

                      As the Apostle Paul says in First Corinthians 15, "first that which is natural, then that which is spiritual," (1 Corinthians 15:46). That is the invariable order.

                      What meaning does that have for us, as Christians? Can we not trace the fulfillment of this in our own experience? Did we not all begin our lives in darkness, in the grip and bondage of death and darkness?

                      Through the glorious redemption of the cross of Jesus Christ we have passed into a period of light which is, as the Old Testament says, "increasing more and more unto the perfect day" (Proverbs 4:18) we have entered a period of growing and ever-expanding light.

                      You can see this order in the work of the Lord Jesus himself. There was the darkness of the crucifixion, passing very shortly into the glorious morning of the resurrection when he stepped forth into the glory of a new day and a new life.

                      An evening and a morning, one day. Scripture also makes clear that if we have never gone through the darkness with him there is no morning to come. We must live constantly in the darkness.

                      The testimony of Scripture is that those who cling to the darkness, who refuse to be brought into the light, become at last, as Jude describes them, "wandering stars for whom the nether gloom of darkness has been reserved forever," (Jude 1:13b RSV).

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                      • #12
                        Yes the days in Gen.1 were 24 hr periods, unless we believe the world's rotation is slowing down then it would have been something less than 24 hours. On day one God separated the light from darkness by causing the world to spin on its axis. A day is measured by the rotation therefore the sun being created on day four has no bearing on the length of the day.

                        Moses in Exodus 20:9 Six days you shall labor then rest on the 7th ...
                        Moses in Exodus 20:11 in 6 days the LORD made....

                        Moses is referring to 24 hour days in quoting from Genesis so how could we say they weren't. Was Moses wrong? Are there contradictions in the Bible?

                        RJ Mac Fun stuff!

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                        • #13
                          An old post of mine from the archives.

                          Any Hebrew scholar, whether he be orthodox or an atheist will tell you that the creation days in Genesis 1 are 6 literal 24 hour days. Yes the Hebrew word for day (yom) can have several meanings, however its meaning is always determined by its context. So verses 5, 8, 13, 19, 23 & 31 of chapter 1 clearly state that each day had an evening and a morning and it also numbers each day 1-6. To be consistent in our interpretation if you look up the word yom you will find that it is used (outside of Gen 1) in association with the word "evening" or "morning" or both on 61 ocassions and always refers to a literal 24 hour day. The word yom is used with a number 410 times outside Gen 1 and it always refers to a literal 24 hour day. The word "night" used in Gen 1:5 is also used with yom 53 times outside Genesis 1 and it always refers to a literal 24 hour day. The word yom in Gen 1 is also singular and if God wanted to convey long indefinite periods of time He could have used more appropriate Hebrew words such as olem or qedem but He didn't.

                          The fact that there was an evening and a morning from day 1 indicates that the earth was already rotating and that there was a source of light present to provide a "morning". We find that light was present on day 1 because God created it then and that the whole creation was being energized by the Spirit as he "moved (Heb - rachaph, literally means to go back and forth or vibrate, eg. energy waves) upon the face of the waters" covering the earth. Thus we also have motion on day 1.

                          If language means anything, then surely an honest literal reading of Genesis one can leave us in no doubt that God created everything in 6 literal 24 hour days. As pointed out in an earlier post, God's commandment to Israel in Exodus 31:15-17 would make no sense if He didn't create everything in six 24 hour days:

                          "Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. 16Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. 17It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed."

                          If every day in Gen 1 was a thousand or a million years that would be a long working week!!! The fact is that God could have created everything in 6 milliseconds if He wanted to but He did it in 6 normal days to leave us a pattern to follow for work and rest, a pattern that society still adheres to today (a 7 day week that is).
                          Cheers
                          Leigh

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