Genesis 1. It seems to me that those who hold to the day being 24 hours insist on a literal interpretation. I believe in a literal one also. However, I do have questions about in which away to be literal. I often feel that people are saying "it is literally what I believe.". So my question is if we are to take a day as literal 24 hours then how can we believe in a literal evening and morning. Everywhere in scripture evening, an morning is clearly defined by the rising and setting of the sun. But we have no sun until day four! I know people will throw in their ideas that God created time and that he turn down the light, bla bla bla. All that does in blow apart the literal interpretation, because now they are trying to define evening and morning with conjecture. That is no different from those who try to define a day differently. If anybody has some conclusive answers it would be helpful. Because the text makes me think we are looking at a story of creation that literally teaches us about why we are here.

  • With the light God made on day one. Do you need the sun to turn on a light bulb?
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Mar 2, 2020 at 5:10
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    – Lesley
    Commented Mar 2, 2020 at 8:54
  • It's always possible that a day is measured by time, and not by where, or if, the sun is, here, due to the obviousness of its absence. Commented Mar 2, 2020 at 12:21
  • If you want to stick with literal interpretation see this answer or other answers of that question. If you are open for a functional interpretation (ancient near eastern) as opposed to materialist interpretation (modern), see John Walton's blog article Commented Mar 2, 2020 at 14:33
  • I must have not made my point clear because of these comments. The question has nothing to do with light or time. The point is if one is to be literal about a day just being 24 hours, then don't they have to be literal about what morning and evening is? You cannot have a literal morning and evening without a sun. So if we can rationalize a morning or evening as being something else, then can't we do this with a day?
    – Husbandman
    Commented Mar 3, 2020 at 3:54

1 Answer 1


23 And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. (Revelation 21:23)

In the new Heaven and Earth, there will be no need for a sun to give light on the Earth, so it is possible. Presumably, the direct glory of God served the purpose of providing light before He delegated that function to the Sun. Genesis one and two make much of the principle of delegation. To the sun, moon and stars, He delegated the authority to govern the days, months, seasons and years. To man, He delegated authority over the animal kingdom.

Remember also who wrote Genesis and when. Moses had to reveal divine truth to a people in submission to false religions where the sun, moon and stars were worshiped. How do you demote the power of the sun? You teach that before the sun was created, there was still light and a God who could give that light apart from the need for a sun.

  • I like your comment about who Moses was writing to and why.
    – Husbandman
    Commented Mar 3, 2020 at 3:45

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