Six Reasons for a Literal Six Days

Creation Basics

by Simon Turpin on June 14, 2022
Featured in Answers Magazine
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How can we be sure the days of creation were six literal 24-hour days? Take a look at these six biblical reasons.

1. Evening and Morning Qualify the Length of a Day

On day one of creation, Moses (the author of Genesis) uses the terms evening and morning to qualify the length of a day since they refer to the end and beginning of a day. The length is defined in Genesis 1:5 by a numerical quantifier, one day (yôm ’ehad). Why is this important? Moses is defining day, the turning of the earth one time on its axis to distinguish between the light and the darkness (a period of 24 hours).

2. God Told Us that He Created the Earth in Six Days

On Mount Sinai, God clearly told Moses, “For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them” (Exodus 20:11).

3. The Sun Wasn’t Needed for the First Three Days of Creation to be Literal Days

Some believe that the first three days cannot be ordinary days because the sun was not made until day four. However, this argument presupposes that the sun is necessary to have a day marked by evening and morning. But to have an evening and morning on the first three days, all that was needed was a rotating earth and a light source, which God created on day one (Genesis 1:3).

4. The Bible Indicates that the Seventh Day of the Creation Week Was Also a Literal Day

Those who think that day seven is not a 24-hour day because it lacks the refrain “evening and morning” misunderstand the use of this phrase throughout the creation week. In the first six days, each day is shaped by a structure:

  • “God said . . .”
  • “Let there be . . .”
  • “There was . . .”
  • “God saw that it was good.”
  • “There was evening and morning . . .”

Because the seventh day is not a day of activity, but a day of rest, it is not necessary to use the “evening and morning” formula used in day one through day six. The fact that the seventh day is numbered like the other days is further evidence of a 24-hour day (Genesis 2:2–3).

5. God’s Command Immediately Brought Creation into Existence

When God spoke the divine command, “Let there be light” (Genesis 1:3), it was immediate. It did not take millions of years for the universe to come into existence (2 Corinthians 4:6).

6. A Literal Six-Day Creation Aligns with God’s Purpose for Creating Earth

God created earth to be inhabited by mankind (Isaiah 45:12, 18). Why would God wait billions of years for man to evolve if his intention was to have human life on the earth? Six literal days of creation makes sense considering what Scripture reveals about God’s purpose in forming the earth to be inhabited.

Simon Turpin is the executive director and speaker for Answers in Genesis–UK. He served in church ministry for five years and earned an MA degree in theology before joining AiG–UK in 2015.

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