Some Christians struggle to believe that Genesis 1 and 2 are describing an actual week and that Creation took place over the course of a literal six-day period. Their pastors don't always help. At a recent conference, one pastor publicly denied a literal six-day Creation. I was both saddened by this and alarmed, recalling that the very first temptation (Genesis 3) was to deny God's Word. When will we learn?
Luther called the article of Creation "harder to believe than the article of the Incarnation." But he wrote: "If you cannot understand how this could have been done in six days, then grant the Holy Spirit the honor of being more learned than you are. For you are to deal with Scripture in such a way that you bear in mind that God Himself says what is written. But since God is speaking, it is not fitting for you wantonly to turn His Word in the direction you wish to go."
I agree, but I also add something. I observe a strange focus on Creation Week and the question, "Is it literal?" And I say that, because in the Gospel we are presented with another week, the one that begins on Palm Sunday and climaxes on Good Friday. It could be called Redemption Week, through which the Lamb of God took away the world's sin. How come no one has ever questioned the literalness of this week, especially when you stop to consider that to redeem the world was indeed a thousand times harder to do than to create it? And that's because at Creation there was no resistance, no enemy. Whereas Redemption fought a battle against sin, death, devil, and hell.
And so next to Redemption Week, I find Creation Week very easy to believe. And I will spend the remainder of my life not wondering whether God created the heavens and the earth in six literal days, but pondering that He redeemed the world, and me, in six literal hours upon the cross.