Feb 1 2007
QUESTION: [composite of several]: You object to the idea that there was any death, even of animals, prior to Adam’s sin. Yet the scripture you use says “...by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned” (Romans 5:12). Death passed upon all men. Animals are not mentioned and certainly don’t sin. What would preclude animals from dying prior to the fall? You also insist that creation took six literal 24-hour days. Yet Peter said, “one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day” (2 Peter 3:8). This seems to indicate that God’s idea of a day can include much more than 24 hours. Please respond in TBC.
RESPONSE: First of all, the words “day, day’s, days’, and days” are used thousands of times in the Bible. How can you say that Peter was referring not to any of the other usages but only to the “days” in Genesis 1? And if that really were the case, how can you change his “thousand years” to billions of years in order to accommodate the pseudo-scientific evolutionary process? You can’t justify that belief from Scripture. This is eisegesis, not exegesis. Had secular science not come up with this idea, surely no one reading the Bible ever would have. And why did secular science do this? Solely because evolution requires billions of years. So this is an evolutionary theory, not a biblical one. Secondly, 1,500 years before Peter, Moses had said: “A thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night” (Ps 90:4). Was Peter contradicting Moses? How long is a thousand years with the Lord—a day, or a watch in the night? It can’t be both. Obviously, neither Moses nor Peter said that a day equaled a thousand years with God—and they certainly didn’t declare that the six days of creation actually covered billions of years! Both of these spokespersons of the Holy Spirit are simply pointing out that God dwells outside of time and that what seems like a long, long time to us is nothing with God. One cannot read any more than this into these two passages. As for animals dying before Adam’s sin, which brought God’s judgment of death upon the entire creation, God had pronounced everything He had created as “very good” (Gn 1:31). It seems unreasonable that He would call fighting and eating one another and the death of animals or any other creatures “very good.” You are correct that Romans 5:12 doesn’t mention animals. But Romans 8:19-23 clearly states that all of creation shared in the curse pronounced upon Adam for his sin and will be delivered from that curse upon “the manifestation of the sons of God” at the resurrection of the redeemed.