Is One Day A Thousand Years? (2 Peter 3:8)
A Day With The Lord
There is often some confusion pertaining to Genesis 2:17 (mainly because it has been taught incorrectly). Although Adam had eaten of the forbidden tree he did not die instantly but continued to live on until the age of 930 years. Many were taught that in Genesis 2:17, where it mentions “in the day”, one day actually meant one thousand years. They incorrectly base this premise on 2 Peter 3:8 because 930 years is less than 1000 years.
This verse (2 Peter 3:8) has nothing to do with a calendar year or day as we know it. If we read on (verse 9) it becomes apparent that this is actually a metaphor, as in God’s patience is long “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness” (2 Peter 3:9).
The bible is full of examples of what God considered a day to be, especially as it related to Adam and mankind. One day was a cycle which consisted of day as (morning) and night as (evening) not one thousand of them (Genesis 1:3-5, 16-19).
When we say Adam lived 930 years, we don’t claim that he lived 930,000 years.
It did not take God one thousand years to create man on that 6th day. Sort of sounds like the creation took 6000 years, and that is why God needed to rest on the seventh day. Did God need a 1000 year break to recuperate? Not very likely knowing God is all powerful.
I am confident that the writers understood a day to be one “earthly day” not one thousand earthly days. There is no biblical evidence that anyone ever thought otherwise.
The Proof #1
This can be easily proven, especially for those who proclaim that Jesus is God, because Jesus said he would be killed and then rise again in three days (Mark 8:31); this he did.
(Mark 8:31) “And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.”
Jesus clearly meant three earthly days, not three thousand years of earthly days.
The Proof #2
This is made more evident if you carefully read the Ten Commandments God gave Moses as recorded in Exodus chp 20.
(Exodus 20: 8-11) reads as follows:
8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
If you are not paying close attention someone could easily overlook what Exodus 20:8-11 (KJV) reveals about this disputed matter of time and God’s creation. It is of particular importance that we pay close attention to verse eight and ten. God told man not to work on one paticular day, that day he called it the sabbath, which was to be kept holy. It was the Jewish life style then and still is today. The sabbath day is the same then as it is now, it consist of one earth day; which is one complete cycle that begins from one sun rise to the next proceeding sun rise. The sabbath is not 1000 consecutive earth days or sun rises. Men worked 6 days, not 6ooo days before they took time out to honor the Sabbath.
Even we as Christian understand this and it is not disputed what Exodus 20:8-11 represents when it speaks of the word “day”.