In the beginning the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night.
This was on the first day.
But the sun and the moon weren’t created until the fourth day. So what’s this ‘Light’ they’re talking about? It obviously doesn’t have anything to do with what we normally think of as the light of day and the dark of night. So what is it?
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say the use of the word ‘Light’ is symbolic. There are plenty of books about what it might symbolize1, but that’s not the point here. The point is, it must be symbolic of something.2
And if the very first thing the Bible talks about is symbolic, I’m going to hazard a guess there are a lot of other things in there that are symbolic too. Literalists who don’t acknowledge the symbolism and metaphor of the Bible do so at their own peril.
1 Bible Mystery and Bible Meaning; by Thomas Troward
Old Testament (Metaphysical) Interpretation; by Charles Fillmore
2 John 1:4-5