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What does the word 'day' mean in Genesis?

Discussion in 'Creation & Evolution' started by TheBear, Sep 23, 2002.

  1. Hank

    Hank has the Right to be wrong

    +49
    Atheist
    CA-Conservatives
    I had a long night. - So all I can say. Read my post again. Also a little your Bible. If God would live ON EARTH or IS earth he can not be God. Humans ARE EARTH; we are made of basic earthly components! Are we gods our self then? WE live on earth and are earth! Or what are you talking about, another version of God?
     
  2. Patty

    Patty Nice ta see yas!

    +1
    Hey Sakamuyo,

    Scientific evidence is important if you believe in a Creator.

    Why??

    Because, ALL THAT GOD DOES IS PERFECT.

    What does that mean?

    It means this:
    If something is PERFECT, it can be TESTED.
    And, each and every test applied to something that is PERFECT will ALWAYS test TRUE.

    If you can test something and your tests are ALWAYS reliably TRUE in their results, you as a scientist can feel comfortable in proceeding in your work with that which you are testing.

    All things in nature are PERFECT. All things in nature are RELIABLE. All things in nature ALWAYS TEST TRUE.

    Therefore, science PROVES that God exists, that God created all things, because, in no other arena can you find such perfection.

    What other arenas exist other than those things in nature? Those things that Man devises. And the things that Man devises are not that reliable.

    Patty
     
  3. Hank

    Hank has the Right to be wrong

    +49
    Atheist
    CA-Conservatives
    In this case He could not have made us. :D

    Our perception of God really do differ, don't they?
     
  4. Sinai

    Sinai Well-Known Member

    +15
    Protestant
    As both SSV and I have previously noted, several of the most respected Jewish rabbis to ever write on the subject closely studied the original Hebrew texts and concluded that it was likely that the six days of creation should be measured differently from the time period that follows the creation of man. But apparently you think that their conclusions should be totally disregarded because they were based upon a study of the Hebrew instead of a reading of the King James Version, right?
     
  5. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "How long did Adam live?"

    Spiritually, not long at all, he instantly died, and started to die physically as well.
     
  6. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "But apparently you think that their conclusions should be totally disregarded "

    Please see my challege. As I was pointed out by someone recently, words should be defined by their usage. thus please show me where it says a nonliteral morning or evening using those words. Thanks :)
     
  7. Sinai

    Sinai Well-Known Member

    +15
    Protestant
    Sure, Louis. Since you apparently missed them the first time around:

    Post #27 by Sinai:

    Why is it that each creative day begins with evening and ends with morning? That’s backwards from the way we as humans think of a day, since we begin the day when we get up in the morning and end it when we go to bed at night. Sure, some might point out that it is Jewish tradition to begin the day at sunset and end it at the next sunset. But that’s begging the question, since the reason for that Jewish tradition is the wording in the first chapter of Genesis. Could there be another reason or a greater cosmic thought that Genesis One is telling us?

    The Hebrew for “evening” is erev. The root of erev means “mixed-up, stirred together, disorderly”—which tends to be our visual sensation of being in the dark.

    The Hebrew for “morning” is voqer or boker. Its root means “discernible, able to be distinguished, orderly”—which tends to be our visual sensation at the coming of day.

    Ancient Jewish commentaries on Genesis indicate that the root meanings help the phrase take on cosmic significance—perhaps of sufficient importance to be repeated at the close of each of God’s creative days: Throughout the time of God’s creative activity, there was a systematic flow from chaos and disorder (“evening”) to order (“morning”). God brought order from chaos in the creation of both the universe and of our own world. The Bible also informs us that God desires to bring order from chaos in our own personal lives….

    Post #29 by Sinai:
    Try the first chapter of Genesis, Louis. How do you have a "literal evening or a literal morning" without the sun (doesn't definitely show up in the scriptures until the fourth day) or probably the earth (doesn't definitely show up in the scriptures until the third day, though it is possible to place it earlier depending upon one's interpretation of various words and phrases).

    Post #32 by Sinai:
    Yes, we are all in agreement on that point, Hank. But as I originally added in the next sentence, "some might point out that it is Jewish tradition to begin the day at sunset and end it at the next sunset. But that’s begging the question, since the reason for that Jewish tradition is the wording in the first chapter of Genesis."

    The question was not whether the Jews traditionally started the day at sunset. The question was whether there might be a reason for Moses' use of the terms in that order. Ancient Jewish commentators thought there was significance in the root terms--and I merely passed that on.

    Must temporarily close out at this point in order to place a bid on eBay. Will continue later....
     
  8. Sinai

    Sinai Well-Known Member

    +15
    Protestant
    Additional posts (continued from Post #67):

    Post #39 by Sinai:

    Sorry, Louis, but I did answer you. In case you missed it, I said, "Try the first chapter of Genesis, Louis." I had also previously told Hank, "The question was not whether the Jews traditionally started the day at sunset. The question was whether there might be a reason for Moses' use of the terms in that order. Ancient Jewish commentators thought there was significance in the root terms--and I merely passed that on."

    Post #41 by stillsmallvoice:
    Our very great 9th century CE sage, Saadyah Gaon, says that the first 7 days mentioned in Genesis were most definitely not 24-hour days as we understand them. Sinai's analysis of the Hebrew usage of the words "boqer" and "erev" is correct.

    Post #51 by Sinai:
    SSV merely pointed out that the ancient Jewish sage Saadyah Gaon was of that opinion--and he was not the only one to believe that the six creative days should be measured differently from the time period that follows the creation of man. Rabbi Moses ben Nahman (1194-1270 A.D. or C.E.) wrote his Commentary on the Torah approximately 750 years ago and based his conclusions not upon science (this was hundreds of years prior to the era of modern science), but rather upon the Hebrew Bible and other Jewish writings regarding the Hebrew Bible---yet his conclusions regarding the first chapter of Genesis sound remarkably like the major findings and conclusions of modern science.

    Post #64 by Sinai:
    As both SSV and I have previously noted, several of the most respected Jewish rabbis to ever write on the subject closely studied the original Hebrew texts and concluded that it was likely that the six days of creation should be measured differently from the time period that follows the creation of man. But apparently you think that their conclusions should be totally disregarded because they were based upon a study of the Hebrew instead of a reading of the King James Version, right?
     
  9. excreationist

    excreationist Former Believer

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    It seems no-one has brought up these Bible verses:

    Exodus 20:9-11
    "You have six days in which to do your work, but the seventh day is a day of rest dedicated to me. On that day no one is to work—neither you, your children, your slaves, your animals, nor the foreigners who live in your country. In six days I, the Lord, made the earth, the sky, the seas, and everything in them, but on the seventh day I rested. That is why I, the Lord, blessed the Sabbath and made it holy."

    Exodus 31:15-17
    "You have six days in which to do your work, but the seventh day is a solemn day of rest dedicated to me. Whoever does any work on that day is to be put to death. The people of Israel are to keep this day as a sign of the covenant. It is a permanent sign between the people of Israel and me, because I, the Lord, made heaven and earth in six days, and on the seventh day I stopped working and rested."

    Note that in both of those passages, God is using the word "day" when speaking about the creation week as well as our everyday weeks. And God doesn't say "according to my creation poem I made everything in six days".... God says "I made it all in six days". i.e. a literal statement.
     
  10. Dorothyne

    Dorothyne New Member

    76
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    24 hours. he said he hollowed it. Later when giving the law to Moses he restated that he hollowed that day.
     
  11. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "Try the first chapter of Genesis, Louis. How do you have a "literal evening or a literal morning" without the sun "

    You can't use the passage in question to prove you point. I can't say, yeah you define good by saying, yeah, good means good. So again, show me a passage in which it doesn't mean a literal morning and a literal evening. This proves that it the text in question (your example) that it IS a literal morning and evening. Until then you haven't proven anything.
     
  12. Sinai

    Sinai Well-Known Member

    +15
    Protestant
    I'll say this one more time and hope that this time it will finally get through to you, Louis: Several of the most respected Jewish rabbis to ever write on the subject closely studied the original Hebrew texts and concluded that it was likely that the six days of creation should be measured differently from the time period that follows the creation of man. In other words, Louis: The Hebrew usage indicates that these words are used differently in the first chapter of Genesis than they are in the rest of the Bible. I realize that you apparently don't like using the original Hebrew since that might get you too close to the actual meaning of the words. Nevertheless, I thought it was worth noting what these ancient Jewish writers wrote regarding what the words actually meant. If you are not interested in anything but what the KJV says (or what your buddies at the ICR claim it says), that's your privilege.
     
  13. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "The Hebrew usage indicates that these words are used differently in the first chapter of Genesis than they are in the rest of the Bible. "

    I doubt this conclusion based on several other examples already cited by people. There is also no indication that it is known to be used differently. Now, if you would please provide me reasons why it is used differently since you can't seem to come up with any example of a place where IT IS USED differently.

    "Jewish writers wrote regarding what the words actually meant. "

    okay, that's fine. I read the works of Origen, but I don't believe or agree with any of them and think he is dead wrong. I think Augstine wasn't perfect either, so what's your point? That some old scholars did it? Good, they neither had 1. the texts that we do and 2. they are human :)

    "If you are not interested in anything but what the KJV says "

    *sigh* AGAIN, show me where the usage of the hebrew words I FIRST POINTED OUT IN THIS THREAD are used differently then for a literal day or a literal night other then the passage in question. The problem is you can't, so you have to resort to saying they are used uniquely here. Then you have to prove 1. why they are used different here, even when other sections of text refer to this and used the words a literal 24 hour periods or literal evenings and literal mornings. and 2. you have to show where this unique usage stops. Two things which you cannot do.
     
  14. excreationist

    excreationist Former Believer

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    Ok, let's assume you're right about Genesis, but what about the word used for "day" in Exodus 20:9-11 and Exodus 31:15-17? Note that in those passages, "six days" is used to describe the time it took to create the world as well as how long people should work in a week. It also says the "seventh day" was when God rested from creation and when people should rest during the week.

    As I said in my previous post, it doesn't say in Exodus that God made the world in six days according to a creation poem... it says "I, the Lord, made everything in six days". It says it very plainly. Are you saying God LIED? Or I guess he was speaking in some obscure "code" in order to confuse us about history and geology, etc.
     
  15. Patty

    Patty Nice ta see yas!

    +1
    Day = Event

    Try it, guys.
     
  16. excreationist

    excreationist Former Believer

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    Patty:
    It seems that the Hebrew word, yowm, has many possible meanings:
    Bible translators use the context, etc, to work out the most likely meaning of the word. And in all English Bible translations that I know of, the word "day" is used when translating Genesis and Exodus 20:9-11 and Exodus 31:15-17. These Bible translators are meant to use the best English words that communicate the meaning. If "event" was a better match they should have used it in the translation. And I doubt all Bible translators are young-earth creationists. (especially those who did the NIV, etc)

    So anyway, do you think there was death and things like thorns, etc, before Adam sinned? Also, God is said to have made plants bearing grain and fruit on the third day and the sun, moon and stars on the fourth day... do you think grain and fruit plants existed before the sun, moon and stars?
     
  17. Sinai

    Sinai Well-Known Member

    +15
    Protestant
    I have no problem with any of the verses you quoted--or with the many that you didn't quote that also use the Hebrew word yom to mean various lengths of time. You have referenced this diversity in a subsequent post. As Dr. Herschel H. Hobbs, who is probably one of the most respected theologians and Bible scholars of the past century, stated:

    “The fact is that the Bible does not say dogmatically how long the creative period lasted. The Hebrew word for “day” (yom), like the English word, may mean any number of things: twenty-four hours, a generation, an era, or an indefinite period of time. Since the Holy Spirit inspired the writing of Genesis 1, it must be concluded that he did not spell out this detail. Had he said “a twenty-four hour day” or “indefinite period of time” that would settle it. But since he did not do so, the time element is not a vital point in faith.”
     
  18. Sinai

    Sinai Well-Known Member

    +15
    Protestant
    By the way, the name you have chosen for yourself--excreationist--indicates that you once were a creationist and implies that it may have been a young earth creationist. I have no problem with your apparent decision to change that portion of your beliefs, as "the time element is not a vital point in faith.” However, your subheading of "Former Believer" is somewhat sad, since it indicates that you may have totally lost your faith. Any comments? Thanks.
     
  19. excreationist

    excreationist Former Believer

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    Sinai:
    Are you saying that a clearer statement would be "God made the heavens and earth in six eras and rested on the seventh"?

    So it would be: (more or less)
    God separated the light from the darkness. That was the first era.
    God separated the water and the sky. That was the second era.
    God separated the land from the water. Then God made grain and fruit trees. That was the third era.
    God made the sun and the moon and also the stars. That was the fourth era. etc.

    You said you were saying that yom probably means "era".

    Do you think the first era happened before the second, and the second era happened before the third, etc? If not, why did the Bible specifically call them "the first" and "the second", etc? Why didn't it just say "in one of the eras this happened, and in another (possibly preceeding) era, this happened"? If the fourth era happened after the third era, does this mean that you believe that all of the fruit and grain plants were created before the sun, moon and stars?
    BTW, how come when God creates birds, people and wild animals in Genesis, he only gives them permission to eat various types of plants? (i.e. strangely the eating of meat isn't mentioned)

    Well I used to be a creationist, but now I'm an atheist. I guess it can be comforting to have an invisible friend by your side and have heaven to look forward to but I don't see why the Christian religion is the true one or that other religions are either.
     
  20. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "how come when God creates birds, people and wild animals in Genesis, he only gives them permission to eat various types of plants? "

    Because it implies death, which didn't exsist until the fall. :)
     
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