What is the Day-Age Theory?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

Community answers are sorted based on votes. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is.

Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
Although Moses wrote the book of Genesis approximately 3,400 years ago, it has been in just the last couple of centuries that serious debate over the nature and date of creation has developed. Cons...

July 01 2013 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Jeff3 Jeff Hammond
I agree with rejecting the "day-age" theory of indeterminate "days" but have some problems with your statements regarding the 1 day for 1000 years and perhaps a need to reevaluate the length of the days of creation. Firstly, I want to emphasize that I believe the "days" are literal and defined and not unlimited or undefined. Now concerning 1000 year days - some points for review and discussion.

1. The context of 2 Peter 3 is indeed scoffere and the judgements including the 2nd Coming of Christ, the dissolution of the old heavens and earth and the bringing in of a New Heavens and New Earth. The context of 2 Peter 3 places these key events either side of the "Day of the Lord" which Peter stresses we must not forget - "this one thing". It seems Peter was indicating an important principle. When we compare Peter's statement with Revelation chs 19-21 we find that indeed Jesus has placed these 2 major events i.e. His 2nd Coming and the dissolution of the old heavens and earth and the bringing in of the new as being either side of the 1000 year Millennial reign of Christ. Thus the concept of God's calender days seems to be just as real as human 24 hour days.

2. Hebrews 4:1-9 is fascinating urging us not to miss out on the 7th Day Rest of God (sabbatismos - see the Greek eg Heb.4:9). The comparison of two 7th Days i.e. vs.4 when God rested at the end of the Week of Creation and vs.9 the sabbatismos, or 7th Day rest that is still waiting for God's people. Is the "7th Day Rest" we are waiting for just 24 hours, or is it the 1000 year Millenial reign of Christ?

3. The prophecy in Hosea 6:1-3 where it talks about the early and latter rain (cp.Joel 2:23; Deut.32:2 and Ps.72:6), referring to Christ's coming, it states that after 2 Days He will raise us up and on the 3rd Day, we will live in His sight. Are these Days only 24 hours or are they 1000 year days following the Cross and the 3rd Day being the 1000 year Millenial reign of Christ when we will live in His presence?

4. The 6th Day of Creation cannot possibly be a 24 hour day. Look what had to happen on that Day. Firstly God created all the animals - I agree that God can do this very quickly by His spoken Word. However, after Adam is created, God gives him the task of naming all animal species. Even if we reduce this down to 3600, the smallest possible number, and if we allowed Adam, who was seeing these animals for the very first time, just 1 minute to have the animal walk up, file past, be examined and then named, there would still be only 60 animals named per hour and even if he worked the whole Day - 12 hours, he would still only name 720 "kinds". Not only that, he still had to have time to get lonely, understand that he was the only "kind" without a partner, have an operation to take out his rib, see Eve created and then get married. This stretches the imagination far too far and would seem to fit into a 1000 year Day much much better.

5. When God told Adam that he would die in the Day that he ate the forbidden fruit (Gen.2:17) yet he continued to live after the Fall until his death at the age of 930 years (Gen.5:5). The oldest man lived 969 years and no-one made 1000. Not at least until after sin has been destroyed and then Christ and all who belong to Him will live for 1000 years with Christ (Rev.20). What evidence that man without sin can live 1000 years - no death, sickness, suffering - just the glory of God in a 7th Day rest as we enter into eternity with Christ (Rev.21-22).

So I feel that we shouldn't cast off so quickly the Day-Age theory if we mean God's calender Days of 1000 years.

In conclusion, the scriptures indicate 5 kinds of "Days":
1. Human "Days" of 24 hours.
2. Daylight "Days" i.e. daylight hours and not the night - Gen.1
3. Generational or undetermined "Days" eg the "days" of Adam - Gen.5:4-5 meaning the period of his life - the same Hebrew word is used i.e. yom.
4. God's calender days of 1000 years - 2Peter 3:8; Ps.90:4
5. Prophetic judgement "Days" where one day prophesies one year - Num.14:34; Ezk.4:4-6

I have no personal problem with God creating in 24 hour days, it doesn't seem to fit without a lot of forcing but the 1000 year days seems to fit better and then makes sense of the 4th Day of Creation when the sun, moon and stars were created to start measuring human Days, Times, Seasons etc. I still believe in a young earth as supported by the scientific data. I believe in "literal" days and not metaphoric days. I do not believe in the Gap theory which is just an excuse for compromise and I do not believe we need to compromise scripture to fit in with science as the Bible does very well in the face of the facts of science. I do not believe in theistic-evolution but I am a creationist believing in intelligent design and in the literal, historical accuracy of the Bible. Blessings in Christ, Our Lord and Savior!

September 07 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Scan14 Michael Tinsley Retired Army veteran. Love my Bible (Jesus) and fishing.
Since God can do absolutely anything I have no doubt He created the universe in six literal days and rested on the seventh and since He _can do anything, He has created a universe that appears to be 13.7-8 billion years old by scientific measurement but is actually only as old as the infallible Word of God states.

Since the actual number of years of creation isn't discoverable, most estimates put it in the neighborhood of 6000 to 10,000 years. Some people would/will give an exact year but the genealogies in Genesis are not complete and we don't know if ages given for individuals are for the exact year to the day. Some may have been 700 years and 6 months, et cetera, so actual times can't be known. Its very highly unlikely that all the people listed died exactly on their birthdays so adding up indeterminate months/years won't be correct.

As Michael said above, the Bible is the Supreme Truth so we should gladly agree and accept the Bible as written to be the literal Word of God.

May 25 2014 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Mini Mike Dumais
Know the Bible is true. That it is accurate on many levels, unforeseeable by the original authors, is further proof of it's authenticity. 

We live in a scientific and technological age, it is important for apologists to understand that while the Bible is not a science text book, when it does make references that can be verified by science, archeology and secular historical texts, it is always correct. 

The Church has given humanity western civilization as we know it, including the underpinnings for most of the advances humanity has achieved including the scientific and technological. 

We shouldn't be afraid of science. In the midst of the culture wars however, the philosophy of science has seen a drastic shift from belief in God as outlined in the Bible first to belief in man's ideas first (idolatry). The consequence is that a pursuit of enlightenment has turned many away from the God.

There are three basic arguments: 
The earth is old,
The earth is young and just seems old
The earth is young

Logic should tell us that any two of the three are mutually exclusive except we now know that time is fungible. 

The fact is, according to very strong scientific theory, the same theory that all but proves God does indeed exist, all three are true. Einstein said it this way "to an old physicist like me, I am painfully aware that time as we know it is simply an illusion albeit a stubborn one."

Time is relative. E = MC squared. It is relative to the observer.

God is supernatural and so by scientific definition stands outside of time. Six literal days from God's perspective is about 14 billion years as we look back in time. We experience time as a line, God see it more as a snapshot, or as I believe Descartes says that God sees our life as a painting.

This is how prophesy works, it is history written before it happens. You might think of it this way: God lifts his profit onto a bandstand to see the parade go by, because his perspective is higher he can see what is coming up before it marches past the observers at street level and he announces to his friends below to be prepared to be amazed at the marchers coming up. Meanwhile the news helicopter above can see the entire parade at once including the muster area and the disbanding site.

God spoke the universe into existence, at the sound of His voice (string theory) first matter then light (big bang) explode into the void and is still expanding today (Hubble), all was covered with water.......

New info! From Lawrence Livermore Lab 1/23/14
"Space weathering, which works similar to geological erosion on the Earth, produces water in the rims of tiny particles of interplanetary dust.

" The discovery may have implications on the origins of life and sources of water throughout the galaxy. As a byproduct of star formation, water ice is the most abundant solid material in the universe. But this new source was a surprise."

Notice, because of current scientific PHILOSOPHY, not the observed data, the jump to evolution first, oblivious to the actual fact that there is a remarkable correlation to the biblical account of the events at creation. Only later will logic prevail to the obvious conclusion that ultimately the question of life is much more complex than physics can deal with.

It is our responsibility to understand the science, apply logic and tie it to the bible. It is my observation that most people who object to the bible don't know what is written in the bible.

2 Peter 3:8 - But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

So, let's test what we know from science about light and plug into the formula: 

1000 years = 1 day / square root of (1-v2 / c2). V solves to 299,792,457 m/s or the speed of light.

2 Peter 3:8 and Einstein's formula for Special Theory of Relativity is proof that the Bible is divinely inspired and that God's time is the universal standard of time set by the velocity of light.

September 23 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Dan Pettit
The things that I consider when reflecting on Creation are...
1) God could have created the universe in six consecutive days with an apparent age of 17 billion years. I would wonder why an eternal God that is outside of time would choose to do creation in a compressed time. Considering Romans 1:20, where God is making the case through Paul, that Creation demonstrates his attributes, why cut corners. "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made,..." NASB All that being said, God could do Creation anyway he chooses.

2) The Genesis Creation account is written in Hebrew poetry. While I believe that the Bible is accurate in everything it says, it was not written as a Science text book. 

3) Genesis 2:4 uses the word "Day" to describe the entire time / duration of creation. This usage of the word "Day" so close and in the same context as the chapter 1 leads me to give a little more latitude to the meaning of "Day".

I lean toward an old Earth understanding of creation, but one where God intervened in unique and powerful ways at moments in time (a Day), separated by millions and in fact billions of years. The Cambrian Explosion being an example of God creating in a burst. Living beings that didn't exist in earlier fossil records and then are evident in abundance.

March 10 2016 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Nils 1 Nils Jansma Missionary in San Diego California
What is the Day-Age Theory? The term “Day-Age” speaks for itself with reference to the First Chapter of Genesis. The Bible tells of God’s creative work involving the earth as being a sequence of Six Creative Days followed by a Day of Rest. Because of the overwhelming evidence that the earth is billions of years old, these Six Creative Days must refer to long periods of time or Ages. At least that is the theory that is supported by both the scientific community as well as Biblical translators. The question appears to be simple to answer, so why is there so much controversy regarding this issue?

In my opinion, many sincere believers are so afraid of being labeled as an evolutionist, that they must insist that the earth is young thereby stopping evolution in its tracks. Apparently, they think that a creationist can’t believe in an old earth and still recognize God as its creator. In their arguments, they often conflate Old Earth Creationists with Atheistic Evolutionists as being cut from the same cloth, more or less. I find that unfortunate because there should be no reason for this issue to be so distracting. It is just a dispute about words and nothing more. (Romans 14:1)

The real problem I believe, arises when young adults enter high school or college and take a class on Historical Geology. The professor teaching this class may be Christian and, among other things, wants to assure those taking the class that his religion will not unduly influence his presentation of the material. That confession should be of comfort to both the Theist and Atheist alike. Nevertheless, it should really encourage the believing student to find out that the Day-Age theory of creation completely harmonizes with the Geological facts presented in the class. Even though God is involved in the creation process, He apparently chose to allow common sense and experimental evidence to reveal the details of His handiwork.

April 14 2018 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Internet image Ben Jones Retired Professional Photographer
God created the Earth and everything in it in six 24 hour periods just as the scriptures say. Evolutionists will argue that the Earth is old. "You can tell it is old just be looking at it." The reason it looks old is because God built age into everything on the earth, He had to! 

Let's assume for a moment that a medical doctor from the year 2020 arrived in the Garden of Eden on the same day that God created Adam. He sees Adam and approaches him, whips out his clip board, writes "Adult male" on it and then asks Mr. Adam what his name is and how old he is. Mr. Adam replies "my name is Adam and I am five minutes old." The doctor chuckles and says "Today may be your birthday, but you are a full grown adult of, I would guess about 20 years old, but certainly NOT five minutes old. Five minute old humans are about 20 inches long and weigh about 7 pounds." Adam says, "Sorry Doc, regardless of how old I look, I am actually five minutes old." 

So why would God create Adam and Eve to look like they are full grown adults? To fool us? To create confusion? No, because they had to survive! Two infants would have starved to death, so God had to create them as adults. Same with everything else in creation, everything had to be "old" In order for it to function properly. How could two infants "dress and keep" the garden?" (Gen 2:15.) They couldn't as infants.

Genesis 2:16 "And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat." Adam and Eve would have a really hard time attempting to eat fruit off of a five minute old tree because a fruit tree will not begin to produce fruit for about 20 years. The trees had to be "old" in order to be able to feed Adam and Eve.

May 08 2020 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Add your Answer

All answers are REVIEWED and MODERATED.
Please ensure your answer MEETS all our guidelines.

What makes a good answer? ▼

A good answer provides new insight and perspective. Here are guidelines to help facilitate a meaningful learning experience for everyone.

  1. Adhere to the eBible Statement of Faith.
  2. Your answer should be complete and stand-alone.
  3. Include supporting arguments, and scripture references if possible. Seek to answer the "why".
  4. Adhere to a proper tone and spirit of love and understanding.
  5. For more info see The Complete Guide to eBible
  1. 4000 characters remaining