Sand in the bread
Many people believe the earth is billions of years old; the Bible tells us that God created it in six days. Some Christians try to reconcile these two beliefs by saying that the days of creation aren’t literal days but simply long periods of time.
The word “day” can mean an indefinite time period and it is used that way in the creation account.
These are the generations
of the heavens and the earth when they were created,
in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens.
Here the entire time of creation is called a day. But what about the days in the first chapter? Here is a description of the first day.
And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.
Each day included a period of light and one of darkness and consisted of an evening and a morning. Only a literal day consisting of the time the earth turns once on its axis has these characteristics.
(Some people say that these were 24 hour days but that might not be the case.
The Bible was inspired by God, who is omniscient and always tells the truth. To be consistent anyone who denies that the days were literal must also believe that one of three things is true: God doesn’t know how the earth was created, he knows but lied about it, or the Bible isn’t inspired by God at all but only contains the opinions and beliefs of men.
Unfortunately people aren’t always logical and consistent in their thinking; as a result there are many who sincerely believe that the Bible is true and also believe the earth is billions of years old.
The belief that the earth is old is a result of rejecting the historical accuracy of the Bible. If the earth was formed as a result of natural processes rather than being created by God it would have taken much longer that six days for it to come into exist. If there was no worldwide flood it must have taken millions of years to produce the fossils we find all over the world.
It makes perfect sense for those who don’t believe the Bible to reach these conclusions. The strange thing is that many Bible believers agree with them.
Does it matter what we believe about creation?
Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures.
1 Corinthians 15:1-4
In order to be saved we must believe that Christ died and rose from the dead; we do not need to believe that the earth was created in six literal days. But salvation is just the beginning of a new kind of life. Like our physical life it requires food.
Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.
A Christian’s spiritual life is sustained by every word of God, including the first chapter of Genesis.
Which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone?
If a hungry person asked for food only someone who is very cruel would give him a stone instead of giving him bread, but many Bible teachers do give spiritually hungry students a stone instead of bread when they teach them that the days of creation aren’t literal days. The creation story is only a small part of the Bible although it is a very important one. Denying the literal truth of the creation but teaching the rest of the Bible accurately is comparable to putting a small amount of sand in a loaf of bread which is otherwise wholesome.
These teachers don’t intend to mislead their students. Usually they are simply passing on what they have been taught. But their good intentions do nothing to mitigate the harm their teaching does. A person eating bread that contained sand would not be as healthy as he would if he had uncontaminated bread. A Christian who rejects the truth of the creation account will be spiritually unhealthy.
If you discovered that there was sand in the bread you eat you would switch to a different brand of bread. You should be even more concerned about your spiritual health and make sure there is no sand in the Bible teaching you receive. If you teach others you need to make sure you are giving your students pure bread without any sand in it.