PMW 2020-069 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
Many academic evangelicals decry Six-day Creation as naive fundamentalism. They reject it as beneath the dignity of serious exegetical theology. Of course, this is quite mistaken. For a compelling, sophisticated exegetical argument can be made in defense of this view.
As a Reformed Christian trained in exegetical theology, I do not tenaciously hold to an approach to Scripture more in keeping with a “naive fundamentalism.” Rather my view of creation continues an exegetical tradition with a well-argued, long-standing, traditional orthodoxy — an orthodoxy including many noteworthy biblical and exegetical scholars from the past and the present.
Though counting noses is not the way to argue a theological point, I do want to point to many world-class scholars who have held and continue to hold to Six-day Creation.
• Martin Luther (1483–1546): “Moses spoke in the literal sense, not allegorically or figuratively, i.e., that the world, with all its creatures, was created within six days, as the words read.” (Martin Luther, Lectures on Genesis: Chapters 1-5, trans. George V. Schick, vol. 1 of Luther’s Works, ed. Jaroslav Pelikan [St. Louis: Concordia, 1958], 1:5.
As It Is Written: The Genesis Account Literal or Literary?
Book by Ken Gentry
Presents the exegetical evidence for Six-day Creation and against the Framework Hypothesis. Strong presentation and rebuttal to the Framework Hypothesis, while demonstrating and defending the Six-day Creation interpretation.
See more study materials at: www.KennethGentry.com
• John Calvin (1509–64): “God himself took the space of six days” to create; “six days were employed in the formation of the world.” (John Calvin, Commentaries of the First Book of Moses Called Genesis, trans. John King [Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1948], 1:78, 105)
• The Westminster Standards (1643–49): God created the world “in the space of six days” (WCF 4:1; LC 120; SC 9), “within the space of six days” (LC 15).
• Francis Turretin (1623–87): “the simple and historical Mosaic narration . . . mentions six days and ascribes a particular work to each day.” (Francis Turretin, Institutes of Elenctic Theology, trans. George Musgrave Giger, edited by James T. Dennison, Jr. [Phillipsburg, N. J.: P & R Publishing, rep. 1992], 1:444)
• John Gill (1697–1771): “though God took six days for the creation of the world and all things in it, to make his works the more observable, and that they might be distinctly considered, and gradually become the object of contemplation and wonder; yet the work of every day, and every particular work in each day, were done in a moment, without any motion and change, without any labour and fatigue, only by a word speaking, by an almighty fiat, let it be done, and it immediately was done.” ( John Gill, A Body of Divinity [Grand Rapids: Sovereign Grace, 1971; rep. 1769], 261)
• Heinrich Heppe (1820–79): “God completed the creation of matter and of the creatures made from it in the course of six successive days; not as though God could not have called every item into existence in one moment, but in order to manifest the variety and wise ordering of His creatures.” (Heinrich Heppe, Reformed Dogmatics: Set Out and Illustrated from the Sources, ed. Ernst Bizer, trans. G. T. Thomson [Grand Rapids: Baker, 1978; rep. 1950], 199)
Understanding the Creation Account
DVD set by Ken Gentry
Formal conference lectures presenting important information for properly approaching the Creation Account in Genesis. Presents and defends Six-day Creation exegesis, while presenting and rebutting the Framework Hypothesis.
See more study materials at: www.KennethGentry.com
• C. F. Keil (1807–88) and Franz Delitzsch (1813–90): “If the days of creation are regulated by the recurring interchange of light and darkness, they must be regarded not as periods of time of incalculable duration, of years or thousands of years, but as simple earthly days.” In their footnote they add: “Exegesis must insist upon this, and not allow itself to alter the plain sense of the words of the Bible, from irrelevant and untimely regard to the so-called certain inductions of natural science. Irrelevant we call such considerations, as make interpretation dependent upon natural science, because the creation lies outside the limits of empirical and speculative research, and, as an act of the omnipotent God, belongs rather to the sphere of miracles and mysteries.” (Keil and Delitzsch, Commentary on Genesis, 2001: 32)
• Robert L. Dabney (1820–98): “the sacred writer seems to shut us up to the literal interpretation,” noting that “the natural day is its literal and primary meaning,” (Dabney, Systematic Theology [Grand Rapids: 1973], 255)
More recent scholars
• Geerhardus Vos (1862–1949): “the days of creation were ordinary days.” (From his Gerreformeerde Dogmatiek, as cited in Berkhof , Systematic Theology, 1941: 154)
• Louis Berkhof (1873–1957): “the literal interpretation of the term ‘day’ in Gen. 1 is favored.” (Berkhof, Systematic Theology [Grand Rapids: 1941], 154)
• H. C. Leupold (1891–1972): “when the verse [Gen. 1:5] concludes with the statement that the first ‘day’ (yôm) is concluded, the term must mean a twenty-four hour period.” (Leupold, Genesis  1:56)
• Jack B. Scott (1928– 2011), Professor of Old Testament: the days of Genesis are in “the Biblical order of the 24 hour period.” ( Jack B. Scott, God’s Plan Unfolded [n.p., 1976]).
• John MacArthur (1939–), pastor and scholar: “I am convinced that Genesis 1–3 ought to be taken at face value — as the divinely revealed history of creation. Nothing about Genesis suggests that the biblical creation account is merely symbolic, poetic, allegorical, or mythical” (John F. MacArthur, The Battle for the Beginning: The Bible on Creation and the Fall of Adam [Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2005])
• Douglas F. Kelly, Professor of Systematic Theology: “Genesis ‘days’ as plain, solar days.” (Kelly, Creation and Change [Edinburgh: 1997], 109)
• Robert L. Reymond (1932–2013), Professor of Systematic Theology: “[I] can discern no reason, either from Scripture or from the human sciences, for departing from the view that the days of Genesis were ordinary twenty-four-hour days.” (Reymond, Systematic Theology, 1998: 392)
• R. C. Sproul (1939–) of Ligonier Ministries: “For most of my teaching career, I considered the framework hypothesis to be a possibility. But I have now  changed my mind. I now hold to a literal six-day creation.” (R. C. Sproul, Truths We Confess [Phillipsburg, N.J.: P & R, 2006] 1:127)
• Morton H. Smith (1923–), Professor of Systematic and Biblical Theology; Joseph A. Pipa, Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology; Benjamin Shaw, Professor of Old Testament; Sid Dyer, Professor of Greek and New Testament; and W. Duncan Rankin, Professor of Systematic Theology, are contributors to a book-length defense of the historical exegesis of Genesis 1 (Joseph Pipa and David Hall, Did God Create in Six Days? [Taylors, S. C.: Southern Presbyterian, 1999. 1999])
The Christian in the pew should not be cowered by the fact that many theological elites deny Six-day creation. For there have been many world-class scholars who have affirmed it.
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