Young Earth (YE) proponents argue:
"The Bible says, God created the earth in 6 days and since each day is 1000 years, therefore, the earth is 6000 years old."
On the other hand, Old Earth (OE) proponents say:
"According to geology - through radiometric dating of the strata, the earth is around 4.5 billion years old."
They cite many references proving the claim.
So, who's right?
Who has the Truth?
For sure, each will claim the mantle of truth. And as long as no one is going to consider the other’s point of view, it would seem pointless to have
an intelligent discussion. But guess what, all is not lost. If you’re an open minded person, there’s a THIRD POV that is able to reconcile the two
opposing views - YE vs OE. This is the 3POV I call “CT” (Creation Truth).
To begin, we need to first understand the context when the word “day” is used in the Bible. Next know how the word “day” relates to the stages
So when it says "day" as in "...the first day... the second day... the sixth day", it's not talking about a literal 24 hr day but a creative
"day" - a period of time for creating things.
This can be ascertained by reading the first and second chapters of Genesis.
For example, in the same chapter, "light" was called "Day". And the entire six days - as "day" - "...the day that the LORD God made the earth
and the heavens."
[Gen 1:5 KJV] 5 And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
[Gen 2:4 KJV] 4 These [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,
Interestingly, when it says “first...second...third...sixth day” it’s always preceded by a "night/evening and morning" at the end of each
The creative "day" can also be understood by the expression, "in the day of our forefathers", "in my day" or “D-day”, etc.
So a creative "day" in Genesis is not only referring to a literal 24 hr day but a period of time.
As for the "day" = 1000 years, it has nothing to do with the creative "day" (mentioned in Genesis) but has something to do with a prophetic day.
The Bible mentions this 1000 years as a “day” this way:
[2Pe 3:8-9 KJV] 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. 9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should
perish, but that all should come to repentance.
In addition, if we say each creative "day" is equal to 1000 years, how old mankind will be then when Adam and Eve were created at the end of the
"sixth day"? Less than 1000 years? If so, it won't make sense and furthermore, will not reconcile with geological findings or even with the oldest
written historical records.
With these points in mind, the 6000-year-old earth is not a viable explanation - sorry Young Earthers.
A 10,000 year would make more sense, but it too comes in complete contradiction with geologic findings.
The only way to make this work is to go back to what Genesis said from the very beginning.
So, when Genesis 1:1 says:
[Gen 1:1 ESV] 1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
… it’s simply stating the fact, that the creation of “the heavens and the earth” already took place before v2 commences. When? It doesn’t
say as no time was given. It could be millions or even billions of years ago.
In fact, if we align the Biblical account with geologic findings, a 4.5 billion years old earth will not conflict with Genesis 1:1. They reconcile.
But what about man? How can we reconcile man’s existence with the Genesis account, and with secular historical records?
Again, from the Biblical perspective:
When Genesis 1:2 says...
[Gen 1:2 ESV] 2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face
of the waters.
...it is specifically saying the earth was already there, in existence, but “without form and void”- formless - hence unhabitable. And as the
narrative goes, the time came (for the formless earth) to be inhabited. So what does God do? He sends His holy spirit (his active force) to commence
the preparation of the earth for habitation. For the next six “creative days”, God proceeds to create things and transform the earth. It took
“six days” to complete the task and at the close of the “sixth-day”, man (Adam and Eve) was created.
As we continue reading Genesis 1:3-28, it lays out the creation in stages.
But going back to Adam and Eve, since they were created at the closing of the “sixth day” of creation, we can now pinpoint the age of man by
calculating the ages of the people mentioned therein.
If from present to first-century C.E = 2018 years (1-2019).
From first century C.E. counting back to Noah’s time - 2370 BCE.
From Noah to Adam - 4026 B.C.E.
Genesis 11:10 to 12:4 gives a total of 427 years if we add the ages of the persons listed therein. Genesis 5:3-29 and Ge 7:6, 11 gives 1656 years)
Looking at the above, this puts man’s age at 5000 - 6000 years, which perfectly align with secular evidence.
From Archeological Timelines: around 4000 B.C.E. was the estimated date of the oldest document found.
"The earliest records we have of human history go back only about 5,000 years."—*World Book Encyclopedia, 1966 edition, Vol. 6, p. 12.
The 4th millennium BC spanned the years 4000 through 3001 BC. Some of the major changes in human culture during this time included the beginning
of the Bronze Age and the invention of writing, which played a major role in starting recorded history.
So putting all this together, using geology (if correct), archeology and the book of Genesis, we have the age of the earth to be around 4.5 billion
years old and mankind to be around 5000-6000 years old.
There you go. The third option that reconciles the two opposing worldviews.