This post is meant as a follow-up to my previous post.
The following excerpt was written by Greg Neyman in 2005 and I could not have said it any better.
"If God's creation was billions of years old, how would He have written the creation account in Genesis? One thing is certain...God is good at telling us exactly what we need to know.
When God refers to a large number, He uses picture stories, such as Abraham's descendants being as numerous as the sand. Why does He do this? If God had said, "You will have millions of descendants," Abraham would have asked, "What is a million?"
When considering the creation, if we broke it down into days, that would be 5,000,500,000,000 days, or roughly 13.7 billion years. Do we need an account for each day of creation...of course not. God in His infinite wisdom, saw fit to tell us the creation story by breaking it down into creative segments, each of which was attributed to a specific creative act or acts. We need to give the early Hebrews of Genesis a break...they didn't have calculators like we do!
One must also consider that time with God has no meaning. To Him, 10 billion years is like a day. Thus, it is no problem for God to put billions of years into one of His days. Dr. Hugh Ross puts it best in his determination that the frame of reference for creation is the surface of the earth. Genesis 1:2 puts the witness of creation on the surface. But who is witnessing these events? It is God himself. During the first 5.99 days of creation, God is the only one present. Thus, human time does not matter...no humans were there to witness the passage of time. What matters is how God sees time! Thus, a billion year day is only a passing moment in God's eyes.
The creation account is written in such a manner for all people to understand it. The issue is not how long creation took...the issue is that God did it, and that's all that matters in the end."
Did the English translators do us a disservice? The divine revelation was given to the Hebrews - the translators merely translated as best they could. In the end we have to use reason to make the distinction.