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For instance, there was the water basin which 1 Kings -26 designates “sea”, and the bronze pillars, described in 1 Kings -22, which perhaps represented the pillars of the earth.The horizontal axis in the temple was arranged in the same order as the vertical axis in the cosmos.The diversity of views on Genesis, even among the most learned of exegetes and scholars, is staggering.While one extreme insists that the days of Genesis must strictly be interpreted as seven consecutive 24-hour periods (thus rendering the earth very young indeed — in the order of thousands, and not millions or billions, of years old), at the other extreme lies the notion that the early chapters of Genesis are devoid of any historical content at all.
This pattern may suggest that the exact chronological sequence of events is not in mind here. This may suggest that God allowed the trees and vegetation to germinate and grow by virtue of natural processes.Such an interpretation makes sense in the context of the very next verse, in which we are told that the “there [are] similarities between God’s creation week and our work week, but also obvious differences. God’s creative activity is very different from ours; God does not need rest as we do, and so on.So it is not possible to draw straight lines from Genesis to our working week.And, as a scientist, the arguments for an ancient earth seem to be very compelling (needless to say, when it comes to Darwinian evolution, it is a very different story).In this article, however, I simply want to read and understand the text on its own terms, not missing what the text is saying; but, at the same time, not adding to it what simply isn’t there.
This stands in stark contrast with the seventh day, for which it is curiously missing.