The Days of Creation

 

 

All creation was blessed when God declared it “very good.”

L. James Gibson

When first created, the earth wasn’t suitable for life. It was “formless and empty” (Gen. 1:2, NIV),dark, and covered with water. We aren’t told how long the Earth remained in this state; some readers see only a few moments, while others see a long period of time. Neither are we told why God didn’t speak the Earth into existence in a fully formed state, but chose instead to use a period of six days to prepare it and furnish it with life. Perhaps God purposefully worked and rested as an example, a model, for the humans He planned to place in charge of the Earth.

The idea of transforming a lifeless planet into one that can support life, a concept called terraforming, has been a topic of science fiction for decades. NASA has even been interested in the possibility of preparing Mars for human habitation. The major concerns are providing a suit­able atmosphere, warmth, and water. Long before humans ever thought of terraforming, God prepared our Earth for life through a series of creative acts.

The first hint of transformation comes when the text mentions that God’s Spirit was “hovering over the waters” (vs. 2). This “hovering” can be compared with the hovering of an eagle over her nest as she cares for her young (Deut. 32:11). The presence of God’s Spirit is an indication that God is ready to act. Creation doesn’t occur apart from the presence of God.

 

Day 1: Light

The first step God took in preparing the Earth for life was to provide light. God spoke, and the dark Earth was lighted. Paul referred to this event, saying that God “commanded light to shine out of darkness” (2 Cor. 4:6, NKJV). There is no hint of a gradual process. God spoke and it was done.

We need not suppose that God invented light at this time. Light is one of the attributes of God’s presence. Psalm 104:2 describes God as covering Himself with light as a garment. Light must have existed be­fore our world was created because God existed before the creation (John 1:1–5). Furthermore, the Bible seems to suggest that the events of Creation week occurred after the creation of the universe. God refers to the existence of other beings who saw the creation of our world (Job 38:4–7), and Lucifer had already fallen when Eve met him, impersonating a serpent, in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:1–7). The fact that the universe already existed im­plies that light did, too. It was the Earth, not the universe, that was dark.

The Bible doesn’t identify the source of the light, but there are at least two possibilities. The light could have come from God Himself. As noted, light is associated with God’s presence. In the future creation, God’s glory so illuminates the New Jerusalem that there is no need for sun or moon (Rev. 21:23). God’s presence can produce either light or darkness. For example, during the Exodus, He was a light at night and a cloud during the day (Ex. 13:21). Jesus’ state­ment, “‘I am the light of the world’” (John 8:12), may be more than a metaphor.

Another potential source for the light was the Sun—more later on the rela­tionship of light to the Sun, along with the events of Creation Day 4.

Whatever the source, God declared that the light was good. The organisms that God planned to create needed light. The good­ness of the light—its appropriateness for life—can be seen in its proper­ties.

Consider some of the characteristics of light that make it especially suitable as a source of energy for living organisms. First, light contains just the amount of energy appropriate for living organisms. Its energy level is low enough not to damage the molecules that comprise the plants and bod­ies of living organisms, yet high enough to trigger photosynthesis, which is necessary for life. We can observe our environment without being cooked in the process.

A second characteristic of light that reveals it is designed to support Iile is its ability to travel through empty space. Most familiar forms of energy, such as sound and mechanical and electrical energy, are trans­mitted by matter and cannot travel through empty space. But light can, and that makes it possible to have an energy source large enough to supply the entire world but distant enough to dilute that energy to a level that is safe for life.

We don’t know whether the light that shone on Earth during the first three days of Creation week came from God’s presence or from some other source; but now it is the Sun that lights the Earth, and the light it produces is an evidence of design in creation. Light is a form of electromagnetic radiation. This radiation can be produced in many dif­ferent energy levels, ranging from low-energy radio waves through vis­ible light to high-energy X-rays and gamma rays. Most of the Sun’s energy production, however, is in the visible spectrum, making it a good source of energy for our world. It also produces some infrared radiation, which provides heat for the Earth, and some ultraviolet light, which can be dangerous to life but is useful in small amounts. Most of the light that the Sun produces is in the visible range and is evidence that it is here by design.

Another evidence that sunlight is designed for life is its relationship to the temperature at which life can exist. The Earth’s temperature de­pends on a number of factors, among them its distance from the Sun, its rate of rotation, the composition of its atmosphere, and the distribu­tion of it on land and sea. For life to exist, the intensity of the output of the Sun must be in balance with all the other factors so that the resulting temperature is suitable for life. Because of this combina­tion of factors, the Earth has this balance. None of the other planets of our Solar System does.

 

Day 2: An Expanse

God spoke again, and the waters above were separated from those below. This is the creation of the “expanse,” best understood as the at­mosphere, where water is suspended in the clouds, where the birds fly, and where the Sun and Moon appear. The Hebrew word for “expanse” is used to describe the means by which God separated the waters above from the waters below. This word can some­times have the meaning of something spread out or drawn into a thin sheet. Some critics have claimed that the Hebrews of old viewed the cosmos as a flat surface covered with a solid dome, and these critics say that this view is reflected in the biblical account of Creation. They con­clude, then, that because these ancient Hebrews were wrong, we can’t trust the biblical account of Creation, so we should reject a literal inter­pretation of the biblical account.

However, it is the critics’ claim that should be rejected. In the first place, the logic is flawed. Whether or not the ancient Hebrews regarded the sky as a solid dome has no bearing on the question of whether God created in six days. Regardless of the details, the waters were separated on the second day of Creation week, and the atmosphere still keeps them apart. Second, the premise itself is dubious. Recent scholarship has shown that the Hebrews did not believe that the sky was a solid dome with windows; they recognized that clouds are the source of rain.2 Third, the supposition that the interpretations of the ancient He­brews exhaust the meaning of the text is pernicious. The Bible itself says that the prophets, including those who wrote the Bible, didn’t always fully understand what they were told to communicate (Dan. 12:8).

The atmosphere provides one of the most crucial requirements for life—a supply of oxygen. It also functions to distribute the oxygen, other gases, and water to all parts of the Earth’s surface. The water cycle depends on the atmosphere’s distribution of water vapor to the entire world.

The atmosphere shows design in a variety of ways. First, it contains an appropriate proportion of oxygen. As is true of other elements es­sential for life, the amount of oxygen in our environment is critical. We must have enough to support life, but not so much that it becomes toxic. High levels of oxygen would also make it difficult to extinguish fires. Our planet is the only known planet with oxygen levels anywhere close to what humans and other land animals need.

The amount of nitrogen in our atmosphere—almost 80 percent—is also beneficial for life. Nitrogen is not very reactive, so it is safe for us to breathe. This makes it a good medium through which to distribute the other gases needed by living organisms. Nitrogen is also an important component of proteins and nucleic acids; hence it provides vital nutri­tion to both plants and animals. Nitrogen-fixing bacteria and lightning strikes chemically convert atmospheric nitrogen into compounds useful to plants. It is doubtful that life could survive very long if the nitrogen were removed from our atmosphere.

Another beneficial feature of our atmosphere is the rarity of toxic gases. Most of Earth’s atmosphere is made up of gases that, at the levels at which they exist, don’t harm life. Some toxic gases enter the atmosphere from volcanoes and decaying organic material, but these gases are quickly neutralized, restoring a healthful atmosphere. Some human activities also produce toxic gases, but this is not the result of God’s creation activities. Fortunately, there are natural mechanisms that help purge these toxic gases from the atmosphere when they’re no longer be­ing produced.

To be suitable for life, Earth must have an atmosphere. The appropri­ale levels of oxygen and nitrogen in Earth’s atmosphere, the rarity of toxic gases, and the interaction of the atmosphere with other features of the physical environment—all bear witness to divine design.

 

Day 3: Dry Land

Again, God speaks, and the waters are drawn away and the conti­nents rise above the level of the sea. We infer great movements of the Earth’s crust as ocean basins were formed and filled with water, and the land exposed. And God declares they are good. They are suited to the needs of the diverse living creatures God intends to create.

Design can be seen in both the land and the sea. Earth has enough water to cover the entire planet to a depth of more than two kilometers (more than one mile). Dry land can exist because of differences in the composition of the rocks that form its crust. The continents are made largely of granite, sandstone, and shale, which have a lower density than do the rocks that comprise the sea floor. The latter is made largely of relatively high-density rocks such as basalt. Both kinds of rock “float” upon the semiplastic mantle, the lighter rocks floating higher than the denser rocks, thus producing continents and ocean basins, respectively. We shouldn’t regard the presence of dry land on Earth as due to chance. The structure of the rocks evidences design, which is also seen in the fact that the elements in the Earth’s crust are present roughly in proportion to the needs of living organisms.3

Water is one of the most familiar examples of design. Among its most remarkable properties is the fact that it can exist as a solid, liquid, or gas at temperatures in the range at which life can survive. Water’s high-heat capacity helps prevent wild swings of temperature where it exists in sufficient quantity. Because ice floats, aquatic life can survive in the liquid water beneath the ice floating on lakes and seas. Water’s transparency enables light to reach depths of up to three hundred feet, expanding the productive zone of the oceans. Ocean water also helps to stabilize levels of carbon dioxide by absorbing and releasing it. And water is an excellent solvent, which means it can transport materials from place to place.

The separation of the sea and the dry land was an important step in making the planet a habitat suitable for living creatures. We can see de­sign in the rocks of the Earth and in the remarkable properties of water.

 

Day 3: Vegetation

The Bible says God gave a second command on the third day of Creation week, one that resulted in the creation of vegetation. In the biblical narrative, plants are linked with the soil or ground both in the description of their creation and also in the record of the curses brought on by sin (Gen. 3:17; 4:11, 12). Despite this close linkage, separate divine commands are given. Life does not spontaneously sprout from the ground; it does so only at God’s command. There is a huge difference between what’s liv­ing and what isn’t.

Earth’s vegetation was diverse from the beginning—herbs bearing seeds and trees bearing fruit. there is no hint that one or a few simple ancestral plants evolved over long ages into the diversity seen today. By the end of that third day, the plants were in place. Three days later, God gave them to the humans and land animals for food. And once more, God was satisfied with His creation and pronounced it good.

Animals cannot survive without plants. Both play important roles in the oxygen cycle. In the chemical process called photosynthesis, plants produce the oxygen animals must have. Animals use this oxy­gen, producing carbon dioxide from it, which, in turn, the plants take up and convert back to oxygen. Plants also provide nutrients for ani­mals. They take in nutrients from the soil and air and convert them into products animals need for energy, growth, and maintenance. And plants recycle nutrients from animal wastes and decaying matter, pro­ducing from them the nutrients that animals need but cannot produce themselves, thus preventing these “wastes” from accumulating, from going to waste, which would limit the nutrients available to animals.

Plants are also valuable producers of many different kinds of mole­cules useful to humans, especially in maintaining health and resisting disease. More than a hundred plant-derived drugs are in current use. Such drugs as aspirin, quinine, digitalis, and ephedrine have been im­portant in treating diseases. Many other plant products may also prove beneficial for our health, including some yet to be identified. Truly, plants are designed to support animal life.

 

Comments on the Text

The language of the Creation narrative seems to be phenomenological—the language of appearance—rather than technical or analytical. Scripture presents the events of the Creation days as real events de­scribed in the language of the writer’s culture. Some scholars attempt to discredit the Creation story on the basis that it is not scientific, but this is a non sequitur. It is the real world that Scripture describes. It is real history, even if the language is nontechnical. We can understand what is meant by inferring what kinds of events would fit the language used to describe them.

“And God said.” Throughout the Creation narrative, God acted by fiat—by command. As He spoke, the creation was formed. Through Isa­iah, God said that His word will accomplish what He pleases (Isa. 55:11). There is no conflict in the Bible’s story of Creation, whether with other gods or with light or darkness or matter. There is only one God, and the work of creation is completely under His control. There is not even potential for a conflict because all that exists is upheld by His power (Col. 1:17; Heb. 1:3).

“And God saw.” Seven times during the Creation week, God de­clared that what He had made was good. The goodness of creation re­flects God’s satisfaction with it. God looked at what He had created and declared that it suited His purpose, which was to make the world a place to be inhabited (Isa. 45:18).

“And God called.” God gave names to various parts of the physical environment. Giving names is a prerogative of whoever is in charge. God, not a human, named the day, the night, the heavens, the earth, and the sea. In so doing, God indicated that He is the God of time (day and night) and space (the heavens, the earth, and the sea). We may affect them to some extent, but we cannot manipulate them. They are under God’s control. It is He who makes the sun to shine and the rain to fall on both the just and the unjust (Matt. 5:45). It is He who can change the position of the sun relative to the Earth (Joshua 10:13; 2 Kings 20:11). It is He who owns the land (Ps. 24:1) and sets the boundaries of the sea (104:9).

Although attention is drawn to the events of the Creation week, what creation says about God should not be overlooked. He is the Sover­eign Creator. At His word, the physical world is transformed as He in­tends. There is no delay, no conflict, no resistance. He creates deliber­ately, purposefully, and through an organized sequence of commands. His handiwork is good, without flaw, and fully functional. The events of the first three days of Creation week revealed God’s wisdom and power as He transformed the dark, wet world into one that was orga­nized and ready to be inhabited by living creatures. Design is evident in everything He does, including His forming of the physical environ­ment in preparation for life.

Many scholars have seen a pattern in the sequence of creation events. The first three days were devoted to forming the world; the second three days to filling it. Further, there is a parallelism in the sequence of topics. The first and fourth days refer to light, the second and fifth days deal with the sky and seas, and the third and sixth days focus on the land. This pattern may reflect the wording in Genesis 1:2, in which the Earth is described as “formless and empty.” The pattern in the Creation sequence, however, is not a rigid structure that the Creation events were forced to fit, but rather reflects a creative sequence that formed a pattern. That the pattern is not rigid is illustrated by the fact that the sky was formed on Day 2 but the Sun and Moon are mentioned on Day 4. Also, the seas were formed on Day 3 but filled on Day 5. Nevertheless, a pattern is apparent, and the exceptions to the pattern are evidence that the pattern is real and not contrived.

 

Day 4: Lights

On the fourth day, God made the Sun and Moon to be signals to humans and other living organisms. Much debate has centered on the question of whether the Sun and Moon came into existence on the fourth day, or whether they already existed and were subject to some change on that day. There is no logical contradiction here; several explanations can be proposed. The difficulty is that we don’t know which one, if any, is correct. The Hebrew text permits some leeway in interpretation.

One view is that the Sun was created prior to Day 4, but on the fourth day was appointed to its function of dividing the light and dark­ness.4 It may have provided light before Day 4, or it may have been dark at first and appeared in its full light when the atmosphere cleared on the fourth day. This explanation can be incorporated into any of the cre­ation models except those that rely on the Sun coming into existence on Creation day 4.

The other major view is that the Sun was created on day 4. God’s presence is light, and that the light of His pres­ence may be expressed in a diurnal cycle of light and darkness. There was no need for another light source as long as God was present. An­other possibility is that there was a temporary light source that func­tioned until the Sun was created. We may be uncertain about which view is correct, but there is no logical contradiction here.

The stars are mentioned in the description of day 4, but the Hebrew text doesn’t indicate whether the stars were created on that day or at some prior time. The text says, “God made . . . the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars” (1:16). This could be interpreted to mean that the Moon would govern the night with the stars. The Bible is clear that the stars were created (John 1:1–3; Psalm 148:1–5) and that they are not gods, but are dependent on the Creator God.

The sun and moon are not named in Genesis 1, but merely referred to as the “greater light” and the “lesser light.” In the ancient world, the Sun and Moon bore the names of gods. Because it seems so apparent that the Genesis account deliberately avoids naming the Sun and the Moon, many scholars believe Moses intentionally worded the account this way to oppose the sun worship of the surrounding cultures.5 These heavenly bodies are not gods; they are the servants of the Creator God, created to do His bidding, to divide the day and the night, to be mark­ers of time, and to provide signals to the living creatures.

Both the Sun and the Moon are also designed to support life. The contri­bution that light makes has already been described about the first day. Sunlight can travel a great distance through space, providing energy and carrying signals to the inhabitants of the distant Earth. The main energy output of the Sun is strong enough to supply life on Earth but not so strong as to injure life.

It is less often noted that the Moon is also designed for life.6 The Moon functions as a time signal, dividing the year into months. It also produces the ocean tides, which provide signals to regulate the behavior of many organisms. The reproductive behavior of sea turtles, certain fish, certain worms, and many other marine creatures is regulated by changes in the Moon’s position and its effects on the tides. The tides also help create beaches and move materials onto and away from the beaches, effectively cleaning them.

Although the Moon’s benefits are not as obvious as those of the Sun, they do provide evidence its being designed to support life on Earth.

 

Day 5: Creatures of the Sea and Sky

Creatures of the sea and sky were created on the fifth day. God spoke, and the waters abounded with many kinds of living organisms. He spoke again, and the flying animals came into being. The text speaks of kinds (plural) of creatures present from the beginning. There is no support for the notion that only one kind was created in the beginning and all other kinds evolved from it. The original creation was diverse, with a great variety of kinds of life.

Design in living creatures is such a familiar and obvious feature that little need be said about it here. Birds show amazing design for flight. Porpoises have a wonderful sonar system that enables them to find their way in the darkness of the waters. All creatures, great and small, are designed for their role in the overall ecology. Further, even in our fallen world the ecological interactions themselves appear designed to support living creatures.

 

Day 6: Living Creatures

On the sixth day, God’s creative fiat is heard once more. This time, living creatures are formed from the dust (Gen. 2:19) and given the breath of life (7:21, 22). Note that diversity is mentioned from the beginning. There were different kinds of wild beasts and different kinds of cattle and of creeping things. When God created the land creatures, He cre­ated them in diversity and abundance, as He had the creatures of the sea and sky.

We marvel at the design seen in all living creatures, including those that live on the dry ground. Although our world is tainted by the effects of sin, we can still see design in the creatures of the land, from the ele­phant to the monkey, from the bat to the horse, and from the rabbit to the fox. We see design even in the lion and the bear, and wonder what they could be in a world free from sin and violence.

The phrase “according to their kinds” (Gen. 1:12) or its equivalent, is applied to the plants, the aquatic creatures, the flying creatures, and the land animals. In context, there were various kinds of plants, each of which produced their own kind of fruit or seed. The animals were created in kinds. Nothing is said about whether the various kinds would change or remain the same. The point is that God created a diversity of living kinds during the third, fifth, and sixth days of Creation.

Many have questioned whether the “kinds” of Genesis are the same as our “species.” The answer is No.7 In the realm of science, a species is defined by whether or not it interbreeds with other species. Groups of the same “kind” that are isolated from each other may lose the ability to interbreed and therefore be regarded as different species. The dog family provides a familiar example. The wild dogs of India don’t natu­rally interbreed with those of Japan or South America; each area has its own species. Taxonomic categories such as species, genus, and family are created by biologists and don’t have any consistent relationship to the biblical term kinds.

God didn’t simply leave His creatures to fend for themselves. He provided them with food in the form of green plants. To the humans, He specifically mentioned that food included every plant yielding seed and every tree producing fruit. More generally, green plants were provided for every beast of the Earth and every bird of the sky and every­thing that moves on the land. There is no hint of predation or violence or death. That the life in the world God created was characterized by peace and tranquility is seen in the picture of God speaking the creation into existence, in the relationships among the creatures, and in the provision of plant food for all of them.

 

Day 7: God’s Rest

On the seventh day, God rested from the work He had been doing. The creation was now completed, and He could take satisfaction in what He had made. It was at this time that He instituted the Sabbath rest. The text says God rested from His work of creating (2:2, 3). This doesn’t mean that He withdrew from the world. He continued to work in it, guiding His people (Matt. 28:20) and sustaining the existence of the universe (Col. 1:16, 17). This text rules out the philosophy of Deism, which claims that God created and then left the world to operate on its own. The world has nothing of its own on which to operate. It also rules out the philosophy of evolutionary creation, which claims that God continues to create now in the same way He has always worked, using gradual processes to produce new kinds of plants and animals. Contrary to this philosophy, God’s actions in sustaining the universe, including living beings, differ from those He used to bring the universe and living be­ings into existence.

At the end of the sixth day, when everything was in place, the Cre­ator declared that what He had created was very good. There are sev­eral features of His creation that we would regard as good.

First, God created through peaceful means—through divine fiats. Creation didn’t involve violence or struggle. Second, the world God created was well designed to support life, with appropriate amounts of energy, oxygen, living space, diversity, and food. Third, God appointed responsible and capable managers, Adam and Eve, to care for the creatures. Fourth, the “kingdom” God created was peaceful; there was no violence among the creatures. Fifth, to maintain a regular schedule among the living organ­isms, God set the Sun and Moon in place to signal the daily, monthly, and yearly cycles.

The goodness of creation can still be seen in part, but the effects of sin have introduced evil into creation, and it can no longer be properly called “very good” as it was originally.

In a sense, all creation was blessed when God declared it “very good,” but on three of the days of Creation week, God gave special blessings. First, He blessed the creatures of the sea and sky. This was a blessing of their reproduction and territorial expansion. In the ancient world, fertility was regarded as a great blessing. God’s blessing meant that even after the creatures of earth became subject to death, they wouldn’t cease to exist but they would instead multiply and populate the earth.

Second, God blessed the humans. This blessing included reproduc­tion and territorial expansion, and, in addition, dominion over and care for the other creatures.

Third, God blessed the seventh day, granting it a special, sacred sta­tus. These blessings indicate God’s approval. But, more than that, they reveal His expectation that we will show our respect for Him in the way we treat our fellow creatures and the way we treat the holy Sabbath day.

The days of Creation have traditionally been interpreted as being literal days. The Hebrew text says, literally, the “evening” and the “morning.” Each successive day begins with a new “evening.” Each day consists of an evening, representing a period of darkness and a morning, representing a period of light—the same kind of days we experi­ence today.8

The Creation days are consecutive, comprising a single week. They are numbered consecutively, which elsewhere in the Bible always refers to literal days. The Sabbath commandment, which God wrote with His own hand (Ex. 20:8–11; 31:12–18), tells us to work six days and observe the seventh day as a literal day of rest in commemoration of God’s creative work in six days and rest on the seventh. This implies that the days of Creation were literal days. It seems surprising that some scholars doubt this.

The scholars who challenge the idea that we should consider the days of Creation to be literal days suggest several alternative interpreta­tions, but all of them suffer from conflict with physical evidence, flaws in logic, or both. For example, the sequence of Creation events doesn’t match the sequence in the fossil record, which rules out the theory that the days represent a succession of long ages. In Creation week, fruit trees came before any animals, while the fossil record shows that animals were buried before fruit trees. The straightforward interpretation that the days of Creation were literal days that comprised one week in time is the best reading of the text.

We often think of the Creation week as consisting of a series of di­vine actions in which God created the various parts of our universe from nothing. The Bible is clear that God created the universe from nothing (John 1:1–3; Heb. 11:3), but the descriptions of His creat­ing don’t always imply that He created matter in each case. It seems unlikely that God invented light on the first day of Creation. The separation of dry land and seas didn’t necessar­ily require new matter. The formation of the land animals and humans from the dust of the ground seems to indicate that they were created from matter already in existence. God may have created new matter in some cases, while using matter He had previously created in other cases. The text seems to allow for both possibilities. This doesn’t mean that God was dependent on uncreated matter. With respect to the Creator God, there is no such thing as matter that pre-existed Him. All things were created by Him (John 1:1–3). This means He created all the mat­ter in the entire universe. He wasn’t—He couldn’t be—indebted to pre-existing matter.

During the fourth through sixth days of that first week, God com­pleted His creation by establishing the Sun and Moon as signals of time cycles and seasons and by making the many different kinds of living creatures with which He filled the sea, the sky, and the land. Design is apparent in each of the features of creation. The Creation days were literal days, forming a literal week of the same length as the weeks we experience today. The original creation was good in that it functioned according to God’s plan; it was complete; and it was free of violence, suffering, and death. God ceased His work of creating on the seventh day and set the Sabbath apart as a continual reminder of what He had done in Creation (Ex. 20:8–11).

 

L. James Gibson, PhD, is Director of the Geoscience Research Institute in Loma Linda, California, U.S.A.

 

NOTES AND REFERENCES

1. Unless noted otherwise indicated, all Scripture references in this article are quoted from the New International Version of the Bible.

2. Randall W. Younker and Richard M. Davidson. “The Myth of the Solid Heavenly Dome: Another Look at the Hebrew (raqia’).” Andrews University Seminary Studies 49:1 (2011): 125–147.

3. Michael J. Denton, Nature’s Destiny: How the Laws of Biology Reveal Purpose in the Universe (New York: The Free Press, 1998), 78.

4. Richard M. Davidson, “Light on the First Day of Creation.” Dialogue 14:3 (2002): 24, 33.

5. Gerhard F. Hasel, “The Polemic Nature of the Genesis Cosmology.” Evangelical Quarterly 46:2 (April–June 1974): 81–102.

6. Neil F. Comins, What If the Moon Didn’t Exist? Voyages to Earths That Might Have Been (New York: Harper Perennial (1995).

7. A. Rahel Davidson Schafer, “The ‘Kinds’ of Genesis 1: What Is the Meaning of Min?” Journal of the Adventist Theological Society 14:1 (2003): 86–100.

8. Gerhard F. Hasel, “The ‘Days’ of Creation in Genesis 1: Literal ‘Days’ or Figurative ‘Periods/ Epochs’ of Time?” Origins 21:1 (1994): 5–38; W. M. Booth, “Days of Genesis 1: Literal or Non­literal?” Journal of the Adventist Theological Society 14 (2003): 101–120.