Let’s start at the beginning, as related in the first two chapters of Genesis.
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day (Genesis 1:1-5).
God’s Checklist for Day One
* the planet Earth
* separate light from darkness
Earth was created as a watery, formless planet, suspended in the darkness and void of space-no sun, no moon, no stars, no other planets, nothing. This, of course, runs entirely contrary to the Big Bang theory in which Earth and the rest of the universe spun out of an infinitesimally small dot of immensely dense matter, but there is no solid scientific evidence to disprove the Bible’s claim that Earth was made first.
The next thing God created was physical light. Evolutionists are quick to ask how there could have been light before there was the sun, which according to the Bible was not created until the fourth day. This detail is not covered in the Bible’s very brief account of Creation, but clearly this light emanated from a source other than the sun. It is also clear that the light came from a single direction and that Earth was already rotating, because there was a “morning and evening”; at any given time, half of the planet was facing away from the light.
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day (Genesis 1:6-8).
God’s Checklist for Day Two
* divide the waters
When the waters were “divided” by the firmament (the sky), some remained on the surface of the planet and some went into the atmospheric heavens. It is conjectured that this atmospheric water encased Earth at this stage in a water canopy.
And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land earth; and the gathering together of the waters called He seas: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day (Genesis 1:9-13).
God’s Checklist for Day Three
* dry land and seas
* a system to water the entire land surface involving springs or mist, or both
* vegetation, seed-bearing plants, trees that bear fruit
The water on the surface of the earth was gathered into one place. This would seem to imply that there was only one ocean on the earth and by inference only one continent. Then all the various types of vegetation were created. They were created as mature plants and trees, each one already bearing seed and fruit.
And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: He made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day (Genesis 1:14-19).
God’s Checklist for Day Four
* Earth’s sun
* Earth’s moon
* the rest of the universe
Time for the rest of the universe! The sun, the moon, and the rest of the stars and planets were created. But the question now must be asked: If the universe was created thousands and not millions of years ago, how can some stars be millions of light years away and we see their light now? In fact, it even seems from the Genesis account that the light from those stars was seen on Earth the very day they were created.
There are some simple possible answers. One is if God can create those distant stars, then it is not really any more difficult for Him to create them with their light en route to Earth, so that it arrived on the same day they were created. A second is that He could have created the light so that it seemed to be coming from millions of light years away but in reality was not. That would mean, though, that we are watching things in the night sky that never happened. For example, we can observe distant supernovas exploding and the resultant light that reaches earth contains all sorts of detailed information in it, such as the speed of the expansion, what isotopes are involved, even sometimes a reflected light echo from nearby gas. In this scenario such events would have never actually taken place, which doesn’t really seem to fit with God’s nature. Furthermore, these ideas seem to be found wanting when put to rigorous scientific examination.
Another proposal that is more philosophical in nature is that like any inventor, God had been envisioning all of His Creation in His mind before He got down to making it. All of these things such as the stars and starlight could have been maturing concepts in the mind of God before being turned from ideas to reality, therefore they developed at the speed at which God thinks. No one knows how fast God thinks, and since He is not bound to the realm of time, the term “speed” cannot be applied to His thoughts. A fully matured universe could have been created just as He apparently created the animal and plant life on Earth in a mature state.
However, there are science-based answers as well. The scientific term for the study of the origin and structure of the universe is cosmology, and Christian scientists have developed some interesting models that seem to explain how the universe can be hundreds of millions or even billions of light years in size, yet still have been created only about 6,000 years ago. Although models such as these may not be how God did it, what they do show is that there are scientific grounds that God could have done it in these ways. Therefore they show that a six-day Creation is scientifically viable.
One model is described by Dr. Robert Humphreys in his book Starlight and Time. ([Footnote:] Humphreys, D. R., Starlight and Time (Green Forest, Arkansas: Master Books, 1994) 137 pp.) It is based on Einstein’s theories of general relativity.
Humphreys makes two general assumptions: 1) that the universe has a boundary and therefore a center, and 2) that our solar system and therefore our planet is somewhere near the center. The assumption that the universe has an end or boundary is valid because everything else that we observe in the physical realm has boundaries. That Earth is near the center of the universe seems to be borne out by astronomical observation.
Dr. Humphreys’s model is then built on these two observations: 1) that the speed at which something travels is the distance traveled divided by the time it took to travel it, and 2) that gravity distorts time (as put forward by Einstein in his general theory of relativity). The stronger the gravitational pull, the slower time is perceived to be. Likewise, the weaker the gravitational pull, the faster time is perceived to be.
[Callout:] Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity can support a one-day creation of the rest of the universe.
When the matter is very large or the concentration dense enough, the gravitational distortion can be so immense that even light cannot escape. This is known as a “black hole.” The equations of general relativity show that at the invisible boundary surrounding such a concentration of matter (called the “event horizon,” the point at which light rays trying to escape the enormous pull of gravity bend back on themselves), time literally stands still.
If Earth is near the center of the universe, then the effect of gravity is many times stronger here than at the edges of the universe. There is also evidence that the universe is expanding-something that the Bible seems to support by verses such as Isaiah 42:5, Jeremiah 10:12, and Zechariah 12:1, where it says that God “spread” or “stretched out” the heavens.
If the universe is not much bigger than we can observe, and if it was only 50 times smaller in the past than it is now, then scientific deduction based on general relativity means it had to expand out of a previous state in which it was surrounded by an event horizon (a condition known as a “white hole”-a black hole running in reverse, which is a possible situation according to the equations of general relativity).
As matter passed out of this event horizon, the horizon itself had to eventually shrink to nothing. At one point, therefore, time on Earth, relative to a point far away from it, would have stopped. A human observer on Earth would not have felt any differently. However, “billions of years” (in earth terms) would have been available (in the frame of reference within which it is traveling in deep space) for light to reach Earth, for stars to age, etc., while less than one ordinary day is passing on Earth. According to the Bible, the creation of the sun, moon, and stars (with their light visible on Earth) happened in the space of one Earth day. This massive gravitational time dilation (expansion or stretching) would seem to be a scientific inevitability if a universe with boundaries expanded significantly.
This cosmology is based upon mathematics and physics (the theory of general relativity) that are universally accepted by cosmologists. It accepts-along with virtually all physicists-that there has been expansion of the universe in the past.
This may sound quite far out, but let’s remember that God is the One who created all the laws upon which true science is built, and that true science does not contradict the existence of God or His role as Creator of the universe. God was working on a physical plane when He created it all, so it would stand to reason that there are scientific answers-some of which are yet to be discovered or confirmed-to explain how He did it.
How long has the moon been receding?
([Footnote:] Excerpt from “The Moon: The light that rules the night.” First published in Creation 20(4): 36-39, September-November 1998.)
by Jonathan Sarfati
([Footnote:] Dr. Jonathan D. Sarfati was born in Ararat, Victoria, Australia in 1964. He is a creationist physical chemist associated with AiG (Australia). He moved to New Zealand as a child and later studied science at Victoria University of Wellington. He obtained a B.Sc. (Hons.) in Chemistry with two physics papers substituted (nuclear and condensed matter physics). His Ph.D. in Chemistry was awarded for a thesis entitled “A Spectroscopic Study of Some Chalcogenide Ring and Cage Molecules.” He has co-authored papers in mainstream scientific journals on high temperature superconductors and selenium-containing ring and cage-shaped molecules.)
Friction by the tides is slowing Earth’s rotation, so the length of a day is increasing by 0.002 seconds per century. This means that Earth is losing angular momentum. The Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum says that the angular momentum Earth loses must be gained by the moon. Thus the moon is slowly receding from Earth at about 4 cm (1½ inches) per year, and the rate would have been greater in the past. The moon could never have been closer than 18,400 km (11,500 miles), known as the Roche Limit, ([Footnote:] The Roche Limit was first described by Edouard Roche in 1848. It is the closest distance a body held together by self-gravity can come to a planet without being pulled apart by the planet’s tidal (gravity) force. As a result, large moons cannot survive inside the Roche Limit. On July 7, 1992, Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 broke apart into 21 pieces due to tidal forces when it passed within Jupiter’s Roche Limit; on the subsequent pass, each of the comet’s pieces collided with Jupiter.) because Earth’s tidal forces (the result of different gravitational forces on different parts of the moon) would have shattered it. But even if the moon had started receding from being in contact with the earth (in other words, was once touching the earth), it would have taken only 1.37 billion years to reach its present distance. ([Footnote:] Tidal forces are inversely proportional to the cube of the distance, so the recession rate is inversely proportional to the sixth power of the distance.) Note well that this is the maximum possible age-far too young for evolution (and much younger than the radiometric “dates” assigned to moon rocks)-not the actual age.
And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day (Genesis 1:20-2).
God’s Checklist for Day Five
* water creatures
The Hebrew word translated as “great whales” is tanniyn, which can also be translated “land or sea monsters.” The word translated “creature” is nephesh, which is more properly translated “a breathing creature.” So the marine mammals were created on this day and probably the marine dinosaurs.
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. And God saw every thing that He had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day (Genesis 1:24-31).…
And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there He put the man whom He had formed. … And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. … And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof. And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto the man (Genesis 2:7-8,15,18-22).
God’s Checklist for Day Six
* land animals
* Garden of Eden
* Adam name the animals
This was a busy day, and although God can do a lot in a day, what about Adam? How could he have been created on this day, and then go about naming all the animals, take a nap, and then wake up with a wife?
A close reading shows that Adam did not name all the animals. It says he named all the cattle (livestock), the birds of the air, and a select group of animals referred to here as “the beasts of the field.” Earlier, in Genesis 1:24-25, it says that on the sixth day the Lord had created all the “beasts of the earth.” The “beasts of the field” seem to be a subset of these. Adam was in the Garden of Eden, but the animal creation was not necessarily limited to that location. So perhaps the beasts of the field were those “kind” who were located in the Garden.
To name all those animals would nevertheless still be a daunting task for anyone. The section of this book on the Flood gets into the issue of how many “kinds” of living creatures there were, but creation scientists have estimated that Adam would not have had to name more than 3,000 kinds of animals.
Take a minute and see how many animals you can name. An experiment conducted on this point by the author of this book showed that about forty could be named in a minute. Now even if Adam stumbled along at that poor rate, he would be able to name 3,000 animals in about an hour and a quarter. Granted, the names of animals were already known in the aforementioned experiment, so it might not be considered a fair comparison. But Adam’s brain was the most perfect one (aside from perhaps Eve’s) that any human has ever possessed, and he would have probably been able to name the animals much faster. Adam was as perfect a human as there ever was. He had been freshly created, he was without sin, and able to communicate with God directly. So if ever a man was up to the job, it was Adam. Even at a moderate rate of ten per minute, it would have taken Adam just five hours to name them all.
[Callout:] There was time for Adam to name the animals in one day.
There is also another point to consider: The purpose of this exercise of naming the animals was to show Adam that no helper had yet been created for him, so when Eve came on the scene Adam would know that she was to be his companion, and would appreciate her as such.
So Adam fell asleep and God took a rib out of his side and created Eve. Some skeptics ask why, then, don’t men have one less rib than women. This can be answered with another question: Does a man who has lost an arm have one-armed children?-Of course not!
This brief look at Creation Week shows that the Genesis account of Creation can stand up to scientific scrutiny. Admittedly, some things are not clear and it cannot be proven scientifically, but the huge difference between Creation theory and evolution is that science cannot disprove the Genesis account, whereas science can and has disproved evolution. Those who deny Creation do so as a matter of choice, not because it is unscientific.