Is creation day mentioned in Genesis a 24 hours day or is it in billions of years?
To answer this question we need to know who is speaking and to whom it was spoken to. If we say because it was God who was speaking then the duration must be according to God’s day. But if we say because God was speaking to mankind then He must be referring to a 24 hours-solar day.
In the past, both physicist and mathematicians alike viewed space and time as separate entities. Defining space as a three dimensional extent which physical objects and events occupied a position relative to each other. With time as a fourth dimension where in these objects or events take place.
We have names like Isaac Newton, Immanuel Kant, Euclid, Henri Poicare etc. who postulated different theories proposing how the objects in space interacted with each other in relation to time.
In the 20th century, Albert Einstein published a paper on a special theory of relativity, in which he proposed that space and time be combined into a single construct known as space-time continuum and how gravity plays a part. In this theory, the speed of light in vacuum is the same to all observers—which has the result that two events that appear simultaneous to one particular observer will not be simultaneous to another observer if the observers are moving with respect to one another. Moreover, an observer will measure a moving clock to tick more slowly than one that is stationary with respect to them; and objects are measured to be shortened in the direction that they are moving with respect to the observer.( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space)
1. God stretched out the heavens – super inflation of the universe.
Job 9:8 He alone stretches out the heavens and treads on the waves of the sea.
Psalm 104:2 The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment; he stretches out the heavens like a tent
Isaiah 42:5 This is what God the Lord says— the Creator of the heavens, who stretches them out, who spreads out the earth with all that springs from it, who gives breath to its people, and life to those who walk on it:
Isaiah 45:12 It is I who made the earth and created mankind on it. My own hands stretched out the heavens; I marshaled their starry hosts.
Zechariah 12:1 A prophecy: The word of the Lord concerning Israel. The Lord, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the human spirit within a person, declares:
2. Time Dilation
In the theory of relativity, time dilation is an actual difference of elapsed time between two events as measured by observers either moving relative to each other or differently situated from gravitational masses.
Psalm 90:4 A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night.
2 Peter 3:8 But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.
Is it possible that both are right? When God stretched out the heavens, time in the time-space continuum was also stretched. It was like an event – creation – being viewed by two observers (God and man). One from the beginning when it happened and the other by looking back through fossils, radiocarbon dating, red shift, Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP), etc..
To say it was definitely 24 solar hours is speculative. There is nowhere in the Bible that says it was 24 hours. It is a matter of how you interpret it. To say it was billions of years is also speculative. There are lots of assumptions made in the calculation of the age of the universe. We simply do not know the exact length of time that lapsed. Can God create the whole universe in 3 seconds? Of course He can! Can God create it in 6 – 24 hour days. “absolutely” . Can God create the whole universe in billions of years? “You bet” .. How long then? It does not matter. One thing is sure – God created the heavens and the earth…and us.