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In his systematic theology, he raises the issue that some object to the biblical account of creation by demanding that God could have created the world “long before” Genesis 1 advocates.
As to why God created “so late,” Martyr responds: “This is an arrogant and malepert question, wherein mans curiosotie cannot be satisfied; but by beating down the follie thereof.
For centuries the church had muddied the waters of biblical interpretation by giving each text four meanings, as if the Bible consisted entirely of spiritual parables. AD 1494–1536) asserted, “The Scripture hath but one sense, which is the literal sense.”12 He did not deny that the Bible uses parables and figures of speech, just as we speak and write today.
Here too, Calvin helps us by saying that God has an important lesson for us in this: “The Lord, by the very order of creation, bears witness that he holds in his hand the light, which he is able to impart to us without the sun and moon.”32 Thus the order of the creation week reveals that God can meet all our needs even without the natural means He ordinarily uses.
Calvin was aware that some people said that the six days of Genesis 1 were a metaphor.
He said, Therefore, as the proverb has it, he calls “a spade a spade,” i.e., he employs the terms “day” and “evening” without allegory, just as we customarily do. When the Bible speaks of God creating Adam on the sixth day, teaching Adam His command about the trees, and bringing the animals to him, these are not just spiritual parables or eternal principles but “all these facts refer to time and physical life.”17 Genesis presents itself to us not as a poem or allegory, but as an account of real history.
We should accept it as such, even if we cannot answer every question one might raise about the origins of the universe.