I contacted the office of one of the young earth advocates concerning his Bible training, and what his beliefs were on certain Biblical doctrines. I asked if he had ever attended any Bible college, or ever took a course in Hebrew or Greek, or ever took any home Bible study courses. I was advised that he had not. I also asked what he believed concerning the Rapture of the church and if he were pre-tribulation, post-tribulation, or mid-tribulation. I was advised that he "leans" toward the Rapture and that he is interested in Eschatology; but, does not have time to pursue it as his time is fully taken up in keeping current with the most recent geological and scientific findings. It amazes me how this man can deny the Gap Principle, which would allow for the earth (not man) to be millions, or even billions of years old; when he has no Biblical training or even taken a home study Bible course. Not even an introductory course in First Year Hebrew, since Genesis is written in Hebrew.
A. He refuses to accept the Hebrew text that clearly states that a change of the earth, as created in Verse 1, had taken place as described in Verse 2. Genesis 1:1 states that, “In the beginning God created the heavens (Hebrew “shamayim,” plural, not singular) and the earth.” Isaiah 45:18 tells us in what condition God created the earth.
“For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it NOT IN VAIN (Hebrew ‘tohow,” meaning “a waste, desolation, wilderness, or without form), he formed it to be inhabited.”
The earth was created beautiful for the habitation of Lucifer and the angels. Because of Satan’s rebellion and God’s judgment upon the earth, it is found in a state of ruination, desolation, and uninhabitable.
The Hebrew text in Genesis 1:2 makes this perfectly clear. “And the earth WAS (Hebrew “hayah”) without form and void…” The English translation of the Hebrew “hayah” should be translated “became.” The reason is, in the Hebrew, when the verb which is “hayah” follows the subject, with is the earth, this indicates a change has been made. Therefore the correct translation of the Hebrew verb “hayah,” showing a change has been made, would be our English “BECAME.” The original creation was beautiful; but, at some later time, was found without form and void. Therefore the correct translation of Genesis 1:1,2a would read as follows:
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth (i.e. beautiful), But the earth BECAME without form and void (i.e., a wasteland, desolation, and uninhabitable).
The man we are referring to above is one Dr. Walt Brown. Mr. Brown is the author of a book entitled “In the Beginning.” In his book, on Page 188, Mr. Brown does make this statement: “While it is true that the Hebrew word “hayah” can be translated “became,” it is usually translated “was.” He absolutely refuses to accept Biblical authority as given by the Holy Spirit and penned in the original Hebrew manuscripts.
It amazes me how Mr. Brown can deny the Gap Principle, as clearly revealed by the Hebrew text, when he seemingly has no Biblical qualifications to do so. He has attended no Bible college, taken no home Bible study courses, does not teach a Sunday School class, has not even taken first-year, basic Hebrew or Greek. He is not sure about the Rapture, he only “leans that way;” yet, he rejects the first two verses of Genesis, Chapter 1 and the disclosure of the time gap between these two verses. Unbelievable! This is what happens when men try to mold the Bible to fit their philosophy of their geological findings.
Since the man has not studied the major doctrines of the Bible, he would probably fail to recognize the other Gap principles that exist in the Word of God in both the Old and New Testaments. Without some knowledge of the Covenants and Dispensations, it is virtually impossible to rightly divide the Word of Truth (II Timothy 2:15). Yet this man presents himself as an authority on the first chapter of Genesis. Unbelievable!
I do not for a moment question this man's sincerity. But, being sincere without knowledge of the word of God only leads to disastrous conclusions, no matter how sincere you are. Here this man is spending all of his time studying Geology, instead of studying the Word of God. I wonder if he is aware of II Timothy 2:15? "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
Now let us look at a few of the other gap principles that occur in the Word of God. May I point out once again, that studying the Bible systematically and acknowledging the dispensational teachings are of the utmost importance; or one will read right over the Gap periods of time and never recognize them. Now, allow me to draw your attention to a few:
(1). Romans 11:25,26 - Between verses 25 and 26 there is a gap of seven years. This is the 7 years of Tribulation following the Rapture of the Church.
"For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in (the Rapture)." (V.25).
GAP - 7 years of Tribulation, known as the 70th Week of Daniel.
"And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away the ungodliness from Jacob." (V.26). this occurs when Christ returns to establish the Kingdom at the end of the 7 years of tribulation.
(2). Revelation 12:5,6 - Between Verses 5 and 6 there is a gap consisting of the Church Age, which now has extended over 2,000 years and will consummate at the Rapture. Added to this is the first 3-1/2 years of the 7-Year Tribulation period of time. After 3-1/2 years of peace, the Antichrist breaks his covenant with Israel and seeks to destroy her. Israel's persecution, in part, is spoken of in Matthew 24:15-22. The woman in Revelation, Chapter 12, is none other than the Nation of Israel. (In Jeremiah 3:6-10, Israel is referred to as "she" and "her" as in many other places.)
"And she (Israel) brought forth a man child (Jesus Christ), who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron and her child (Christ) was caught up (His ascension in Acts 1:11) unto God, and to his throne." (V.5).
GAP - The Church Age, over 2,000 years plus. Also 3-1/2 of the 7-Year Tribulation period of time.
"And the woman (Israel) fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days." (V.6). This takes place in the last 3 ½ years of the Tribulation.
(3). John 5:29 - this verse gives a general statement concerning the resurrection of life and the resurrection of damnation. Between these two resurrections there is a gap period of time. This gap is 1,000 years long, in which Christ will reign on this earth as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. I will quote Verse 28 and the first half of Verse 29, as the resurrection of life is composed of four separate events, which include all the saved.
"Marvel not at this: for the hour (i.e., time) is coming; in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice." (Verse 28). "And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life...(Verse 29a).
The resurrection of life is composed of four parts as follows:
A. Christ's resurrection and being the first fruits (I Corinthians 15:20-23) of them that sleep along with those resurrected in Matthew 27:52,53.
B. Those at the Rapture. "The dead in Christ shall rise first." (I Thessalonians 4:13-17 and I Corinthians 15:50-54).
C. The Two Witnesses in the Tribulation Period. (Revelation 11:3,7-12).
D. All the Old Testament saints along with those in Revelation 20:4 who were beheaded in the Tribulation for refusing to worship the Antichrist, but here resurrected to live and reign with Christ for 1,000 years.
The First Resurrection is composed of all the saved.
Now notice in Revelation 20:5,6.
"But the rest of the dead (i.e., the lost) lived not again until the thousand years (Christ's Kingdom Reign) were finished. This is the first resurrection." (V.5). Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years." (V.6).
GAP - of the 1,000 year reign of Christ before the "resurrection of damnation" spoken of in the last half of the verse in John 5:29b.
"And they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." (V.29b).
This resurrection consists of only those who are lost. This is the Great White Throne Judgment where the lost are brought up out of Hell (Greek "Hades") and cast into the lake of fire for all eternity. (Rev. 20:11-15).
(4). Isaiah 9:6,7 - Between these two verses there is the GAP of the Church Age and the 7-Year Tribulation.
"For unto us a child is born (Christ), unto us a son is given..." (V.6). This is speaking of the BIRTH of Christ.
GAP - Church Age, 2,000-plus years, also included, the 7-Year Tribulation Period, and then Christ comes back to establish His kingdom reign spoken of in Verse 7.
"Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon HIS KINGDOM to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth ever for ever." (V.7).
(5). Malachi 3:1,2 - Between Verses 1 and 2 we have a gap period of time. The gap is composed of the Church Age plus the 7-Year Tribulation Period.
"Behold, I will send my messenger (i.e. John the Baptist) and he shall prepare the way before me. (V.1).
GAP - The Church Age 2,000-plus years, also the 7-Year Tribulation Period of time.
"But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like the refiner's fire, and fuller's soap." (V.2).
This is when Christ returns to judge the nations at the end of the Tribulation Period, just prior to establishing the Kingdom. Matthew 25:31-41 speaks of the same event, as well as many other Scriptures. So, between Verse 1, which is speaking of John the Baptist and Verse 2 speaking of Christ's return to earth to judge the nations and set up the Kingdom, there is a GAP of 2,000-plus years, besides the 7-Year Tribulation Period.
I have only projected five examples of the gap principle in order to show that in studying God's Word, it must be rightly divided (II Timothy 2:15). Young earth advocates absolutely refuse to believe the first mention of a Gap Principle as given in Genesis, Chapter 1, between Verses One and Two. I get a little sick of hearing from some of these "young earth-ers” saying, "We must get back to Biblical authority." Statements similar to this are only a smoke-screen to make you believe that you are denying God's Word and its authority if you don't believe their philosophy, i.e., that the earth is only about 6,000 years old. This is "brain washing" philosophy at its best. (or worst?) I wonder if these young earth advocates even recognize the gap of the Church Age in the Old Testament.
The Old Testament prophets knew nothing of the dispensation of the Church Age. You can search the Old Testament through and you will not find one reference to the Church Age. This dispensation of time we are now in was a mystery. Mystery in the New Testament is a truth which has never previously been revealed; but, now is made known for the first time. The Apostle Paul who had penned fourteen of the twenty-seven books of the New Testament by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit would be the one to expound on these truths, which had previously not been known to the prophets. Read Ephesians 3:1-10.
We shall see, later on, that the theology of many of these young earth advocates is corrupt. Since they refuse to accept the Gap Principle in Genesis 1:1-3 as set forth in the original Hebrew, then how could these same men recognize this same Gap Principle which is prolific throughout the Old Testament? Maybe I should remind our readers that it was a Seventh-Day Adventist, a so-called prophet named Ellen G. White, which introduced the young earth philosophy. a man by the name of George McCready Price, who was an amateur geologist, followed her philosophy thus attributing most fossil-bearing rock formations to the geological disruptions of the biblical flood. Only a hand full followed his philosophy before his death in 1963. Two years prior to Price's death, a book entitled "The Genesis Flood" came out in 1961. One John C. Whitcomb, Jr. and Henry J. Morris, a hydraulic engineer, co-authored the book. They borrowed and incorporated the same pseudo-philosophy from one Ellen G. White. "The Genesis Flood" which was very influential in promoting the young earth philosophy and, in turn, led to the formation of the Creation Research Society in 1963. This society is dedicated to promoting their philosophy of a young earth of only about 6,000 years old. Remember, the young earth idea comes from a false prophet, Ellen G. White.