Preterism Matters

                             The Book of Genesis

 To understand The Book of Genesis properly read the book Beyond Creation Science by Tim Martin and Jeff Vaughn. Also, visit the web site Covenant Creation.  Genesis is best understood as describing covenant creation, not creation of the physical universe. The creation account cannot be taken literally without contradictions. The physical world and universe are much older than 6-10 thousand years. They are likely billions of years old. Read the book A New Look at an Old Earth by Don Stoner. Also, Noah's flood was local, not global.

God created The Bible. God also created science. Therefore science and the Bible cannot contradict each other. Man's interpretation of The Bible or of science can be wrong and therefore appear to contradict one another. However, God is not deceiving us with the apparent age of the physical universe. If light travels 186,200 miles per second and if the stars are much bigger than the earth, then they testify to a very old universe. Also, consider the number of craters on the moon. Were they all formed in 6-10 thousand years? Not likely.

 The beginning and end of The Bible are related. Preterist eschatology (the end) sheds much light on protology (the beginning). The nature of the beginning and the end of The Bible must match. If the end is covenantal, then it follows that the beginning is also covenantal , not physical.

Problems With Taking The Creation Account Literally

  • The sun and moon were created on the fourth day, so how do you have evening and morning before the sun and moon are created?
  • How do you have light on the first through third day before the sun was created?
  • Why does day 7 have no evening and morning?
  • Hebrews 4:4ff associates God’s day of rest with resting in Christ’s salvation
  • “Day” in Genesis 2:4 is not literal but is the same word “yom” in Hebrew as in Genesis 1. The entire creation week is compared to one day in Genesis 2:4.

Genesis 2:4 (King James Version)

 4These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,

  • Genesis 2:4 says the creation of the heavens and earth involved “generations” plural, not a literal 7-day week.
  • Literalism pits Genesis 1 and 2 against each other. The order of creation is opposite in these two chapters. In Genesis 2 the order of creation is man, garden, animals.
  • Both Adam and Eve were created on Day 6 in Genesis 1:27. But according to Genesis 2, many things took place between the creation of Adam and Eve. All of these things took place in one literal 24-hour day?
  • What about the problem of incest? If Adam and Eve were the first literal people, their offspring had to mate with each other.
  • Where did Cain get his wife in Genesis 4:17? Was she Adam’s daughter? If she was, would Adam let Cain marry his daughter (Cain’s sister) after Cain had killed Adam’s son Abel?
  • Cain was concerned that people would kill him while he was wandering on the earth. Who were the people and where did they all come from?
  • In Genesis 4:17 Cain was building a city. Where did all the people come from to inhabit a city?

The creation account is probably written in Hebrew poetry. It is a type of apocalyptic writing. This is evidenced by the fact that the creation account repeats itself.

Evening and Morning

The phrase "Evening and Morning" in Genesis 1 is not to be taken as a literal 24-hour day. It is used much like we would say the store is open day and night. We mean the store is always open. The words "evening" and "morning" are used throughout the Old Testament where they clearly do not mean a limited 24-hour day, but are instead used to denote an undefined period of time. Here are some examples:

 

Exodus 18:13 (New King James Version)

13 And so it was, on the next day, that Moses sat to judge the people; and the people stood before Moses from morning until evening.

 

Exodus 27:21 (New King James Version)

21 In the tabernacle of meeting, outside the veil which is before the Testimony, Aaron and his sons shall tend it from evening until morning before the LORD. It shall be a statute forever to their generations on behalf of the children of Israel.

 

Leviticus 24:3 (New King James Version)

3 Outside the veil of the Testimony, in the tabernacle of meeting, Aaron shall be in charge of it from evening until morning before the LORD continually; it shall be a statute forever in your generations.

 

Job 4:20 (New King James Version)

 20 They are broken in pieces from morning till evening; They perish forever, with no one regarding.

 

1 Samuel 17:16 (New King James Version)

16 And the Philistine drew near and presented himself forty days, morning and evening.

 

1 Chronicles 16:40 (New King James Version)

40 to offer burnt offerings to the LORD on the altar of burnt offering regularly morning and evening, and to do according to all that is written in the Law of the LORD which He commanded Israel;

 

2 Chronicles 2:4 (New King James Version)

4 Behold, I am building a temple for the name of the LORD my God, to dedicate it to Him, to burn before Him sweet incense, for the continual showbread, for the burnt offerings morning and evening, on the Sabbaths, on the New Moons, and on the set feasts of the LORD our God. This is an ordinance forever to Israel.

 

2 Chronicles 31:3 (New King James Version)

3 The king also appointed a portion of his possessions for the burnt offerings: for the morning and evening burnt offerings, the burnt offerings for the Sabbaths and the New Moons and the set feasts, as it is written in the Law of the LORD.

 

Ezra 3:3 (New King James Version)

3 Though fear had come upon them because of the people of those countries, they set the altar on its bases; and they offered burnt offerings on it to the LORD, both the morning and evening burnt offerings.

 

Psalm 55:17 (New King James Version)

17 Evening and morning and at noon  I will pray, and cry aloud, And He shall hear my voice.

 

Daniel 8:14 (Young's Literal Translation)

14And he saith unto me, Till evening -- morning two thousand and three hundred, then is the holy place declared right.

 

Daniel 8:26 (New King James Version)

26 “ And the vision of the evenings and mornings  Which was told is true; Therefore seal up the vision, For it refers to many days in the future.”

 

 Also, the word "day" in The Bible does not necessarily mean a 24-hour period.For example, "the day of the Lord" is not referring to a 24-hour day.

 

Noah's Flood Was Local, Not Global.

  • The local flood view is not new.
  • Josephus believed Noah's flood was local.
  • Ancient people did not think of the world the way modern people do. To them, "world" and "earth" meant the known world.
  • Noah's flood was a covenant judgment against the line of Seth, not a judgment against the whole world.
  • Nephilim were separate from Noah's family and they lived before and after Noah's flood.(Gen 6:4 and Num 13:33). Therefore flood was not global.
  • The division of labor existed before and after Noah's flood (Gen 4:19-22). Noah's family alone could not have maintained the division of labor.
  • The water in Noah's flood only rose about 20-30 feet (Gen 7:20).
  • The olive tree would have been destroyed in a global flood (Gen 8:11).
  • Genesis 8:13-14 says, "earth was dried." Did all the oceans dry up? Or does "earth" refer to local land?
  • Tigris and Euphrates rivers would have been destroyed by a global flood.
  • Noah's ark landed in the same area as when the flood began.
  • How could a global flood place fossils neatly in a geological column?
  • There is no way Noah could have taken all the animals (2 of each) into one ark. The amount of food to feed two elephants for that long would fill many arks.
  • 95% of all animals that have ever lived are now extinct. Why would God tell Noah to save all these animals only to have them go extinct?
  • Global flood advocates assume many miracles, but also want to use science to explain the flood and fossil record.
  • Global flood advocates would have to believe in evolution more than Darwin did. They would have to believe in hyper-evolution. Before the flood, according to global flood advocates, there was no desert or ice caps. Where did the specially adapted animals like penguins and polar bears come from? Why would they exist before the flood if there were no ice caps? After the flood, penguins would have to migrate down through Africa to Antarctica which did not even exist before the flood according to global flood advocates. There are simply too many animals with specific adaptations to their specific environment for a global flood to be true.
  • The Tower of Babel was built around the time of Peleg about 101 years after Noah's flood. If the flood was global and the Tower of Babel was global, where did all the people come from in only 101 years?
  • Nimrod was Noah's great grandson and was involved in building the Tower of Babel. Nimrod built 8 cities after the Tower of Babel was destroyed. Where did all the people to build these cities come from if there had been a global flood? Did they all speak different languages?
  • The Septuagint says that Methuselah died 17-18 years after the flood, disproving a global flood.
  • The seemingly global language of the flood account in Genesis is not global at all, but local. "Erets" is the Hebrew word for "earth." It does not denote the whole physical world. "Erets is translated as "land" over 1000 times in the Old Testament. (Gen 12:1; Ezra 1:2; Hab 1:6; Jer 47:2; Isa 24:1-2)
  • The phrase "face of the earth" is local, not global. (Gen 4:14; 41:56; Exo 10:4-5,15; Num 22:5; Ezek 34:6; Dan 8:5; Zeph 1:2-3, 18; Luke 21:35).
  • The phrase "under heaven" is not global.(Duet 2:25; Acts 2:5; Col 1:23)

Creation Language

Common Objections to a Local Flood 

The Age of the Earth (short video)

Ralph Woodrow's Book on Noah's Flood