Answers Update: AiG’s weekly email newsletter
September 9, 2006 

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Q: Was Jonah in the belly of the “great fish” for three days or for three thousand years?

A: There are many Christians who should believe he was in the fish for three thousand years—or longer—if they are consistent with how they approach Scripture.

Many Christians oppose the belief that God created in six literal days. They quote 2 Peter 3:8, “One day is with the Lord as a thousand years.” On this basis, they say that the days of creation could be thousands of years. But if they were consistent, using this same logic, one could translate Jonah 2:17 this way:

Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish THREE THOUSAND YEARS.

This is nonsense, of course. The context does not allow for using this phrase from the New Testament to determine the meaning of the Hebrew word “day” in Genesis 1. Peter is simply pointing out that God is outside of time, and thus is not limited by natural processes and time.

Genesis shows clearly that God created everything in six literal days, which is exactly what the Hebrew words—in context—mean.

For more information on the length of the days in Genesis, see The necessity for believing in six literal days.

Antibiblical quote of the week

From a superficial reading, the impression received is that the entire creative process took place in six twenty-four hour days. If this was the true intent of the Hebrew author (a questionable deduction, as will be presently shown), this seems to run counter to modern scientific research, which indicates that the planet Earth was created several billion years ago.

– Archer, G.L., A Survey of Old Testament Introduction, Moody, Chicago, p. 187, 1985.

Recommended resources:

Why Won't They Listen? (Softcover)
The Six Days of Creation (DVD)
War of the Worldviews (Softcover)
Six Days or Millions of Years? (Booklet)
Grand Canyon (Three-panel brochure)
Six Days & the Eisegesis Problem (DVD)
Grand Canyon: A Different View (Hardcover)
The Days of Creation (Spiral-bound)

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This week on

September 2: News to Note
September 4: “Crocodile hunter” dies
September 5: More Answers coming your way!
September 6: Brain size and evolution: is there a valid correlation?
September 7: Creation: Facts of Life: Fossil plants
September 8: Feedback: Species and kinds and the Ark

Answers magazine and The Old Schoolhouse Magazine


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