The Seven Days Of Creation The Bible begins with the creation of the universe: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" (Genesis 1:1 NIV). This single verse describes the actual transformation of invisible energy into all of the fundamental physical matter (as summed up in Albert Einstein's famous E=mc2equation) that would be formed into stars, planets and everything else - including us. Scientists now estimate that the great event took place approximately 15 billion years ago.
The next verse describes the earth after its creation, long after the creation of the universe: "Now the earth was [or became] formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and The Spirit of God was hovering over the waters" (Genesis 1:2 NIV). Scientists estimate the age of the earth to be about 5 billion years old - leaving an estimated 10 billion years between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2.
There has been a tremendous amount of disagreement between science and religion, each side armed with its own obvious facts to refute the other. People of science and religion need not disagree so often if they would realize that their different observations are the result of each looking only at opposite sides of the same coin. The contradictory evidence is actually an illusion, caused by omission, which virtually guarantees that alone, either scientific theory or religious doctrine can only be half-right in their understanding of the creation of the universe or the origin of humanity. Together however, the picture is complete and harmonious.
We all realize that God was Creator, but how often do we consider what was involved in that creation? God was a chemist, a physicist, an astronomer, a biologist. He was most certainly an artist, a maker of all of our world's beauty. He was the lawmaker of all of the unseen forces that make "nature" orderly and predictable.
The universe as it exists was not produced by some cosmic accident. The conditions of creation were intricately planned and considered. A mindless uncontrolled "big bang" would result in destruction and chaos, not the life and order we now see.
On the other hand, a great initial expansion (explosion) of physical matter that had just been transformed (created) from pure energy (from a physical point of view, literally nothing), followed by orderly development (from natural laws put into force beforehand by a Creator) of stars, galaxies and everything else, is reasonable and logical. It satisfies both religion and science.
The First Day
The first recorded Words of God that we have are "Let there be light" (Genesis 1:3 NIV). The sun was already shining brightly, but God made the earth's thick new atmosphere allow diffuse light to penetrate to the surface. And so it was that the light was made separate from darkness. The first day of earth's creation was literally the first "day" as someone on earth's surface would experience it - a period of opaque light, and a period of darkness. (Genesis 1:3-5)
The Second Day
The separation of the waters. There was yet no liquid water, no oceans. All of the water was in the form of a vapor, a worldwide super-fog, extending a number of kilometers/miles up from the very hot (above the boiling temperature of water) bare-rock earth's surface (the earth's core remains molten right to the present day). God's "hovering over the waters" in verse 2 describes His being above that gaseous-water atmosphere, not a liquid ocean. God then caused most of the water to condense onto the cooling earth which simultaneously formed a whole-planet ocean and cleared the sky. (Genesis 1:6-8)
The Third Day
The first appearance of dry ground. The further cooling of the surface set in motion a process of natural contraction, uplifting and motion of the crust (the process continues today, called "plate tectonics"). The earth changed from a smooth one-level molten "cue ball" to a planet with an irregular surface with ocean basins and continental landmasses. With dry ground available, the first plants were made to grow in great abundance. (Genesis 1:9-13)
The Fourth Day
With the sky now clear, the sun, moon and stars were dependably visible. They were to "serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years." The sun marked the day (sunset to sunset), the moon the month (new moon to new moon), and the stars the seasons (constellations are seen in particular seasons e.g. "Orion" is visible in winter in the northern hemisphere, which is summer in the southern hemisphere). (Genesis 1:14-19)
The Fifth Day
Great numbers of birds and sea creatures. God blessed them and said, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth." (Genesis 1:20-23)
The Sixth Day
Vast numbers of land animals. Man. From the man, woman (humans today are just now discovering how to genetically alter fertilized embryos, and even to create one human from the tissue of another - known as "cloning"). (Genesis 1:24-31)
The Seventh Day
The Sabbath Day. "By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all His work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested [or ceased] from all the work of creating that He had done." The day that is the basis for The Fourth Commandment. (Genesis 2:2-3)
The question of whether the seven days of creation were literal days, or symbolic of stages of development is actually irrelevant to the undeniable reality that Creation happened. The observable universe, the earth beneath our feet, and every one of us exist. Who needs more proof than that?
Fact Finder: What did the first humans eat?
(a) plants (b) animals (c) plants and animals