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Old-Earth creationists (OECs) believe that Yahweh created the Earth as described in Genesis, but they interpret the biblical word for "day" as a symbolic unit meant to designate a much longer, unspecified period of time. Thus, OECs believe they are able to reconcile scientific facts (the old age of the Earth) with the Genesis account of creation. This is also known as "having your cake and eating it too."
- The text never mentions that we are to take this story as anything but literal.
- The age of the Earth and universe are not the only things the Bible is in error on with regards to the creation story. The Genesis account also dishes out misinformation such as "the order of creation" that contradicts the obvious (e.g., plants created before the sun or moon). It also contradicts the fossil record which shows more complex organisms appearing over time and not, as the creation "fifth day" presents, sea life and birds appearing together in one fell swoop.
- How do you know when to interpret the Bible as symbolic or literal? After the Bible is shown to be in error by science?
- Why should be the Bible be trusted if it has to be rationalized or revised starting in the first chapter?
- Why does God allow "his people" to be blinded by the truth on this point for thousands of years? Why did he leave room for people to misrepresent him when he could have been clear on this point from the beginning?
- Since the church usually eventually bows down to science when it has been shown to be in error (see Galileo), it's better to save oneself the constant fence-hopping and just start without supernatural assumptions.