Re: How to encourage a former creationist to persevere in faith?

From: gordon brown <gbrown@euclid.colorado.edu>
Date: Mon Sep 05 2005 - 14:34:04 EDT

On Fri, 2 Sep 2005, Randy Isaac wrote:

> Good point, Iain. I was thinking too narrowly of 'literal' as a day being
> 24 hours. The question still remains whether it is chronology or
> completeness or allegory or framework or any or all of the above. At least
> we all seem to agree on the primary message--it's the additional multiple
> levels of meaning that are the challenge.
>
>
> Randy
>

When we say that 24 hours is the literal meaning of day, aren't we being
influenced by our modern use of the word as a precise unit of time that
can be measured from any starting point? However in particular passages
such as Exodus 20:8-11 it appears to me that in those instances when 'yom'
is clearly intended to be taken literally, it always begins and ends at
sunset. (Such days are not exactly 24 hours long, but that is their
average length over the course of a year in the tropics or temperate
zones.) This is what a day is in the Jewish calendar, and most people
presumably had to rely on the celestial bodies to determine time in the
era in which Genesis was written. Thus literal days could not have existed
until after creation had started to take place, and the days of creation
could not have been literal in this sense.

Gordon Brown
Department of Mathematics
University of Colorado
Boulder, CO 80309-0395
Received on Mon Sep 5 14:36:19 2005

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