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Q: Biblical timeline ( No Answer,   17 Comments )
Question  
Subject: Biblical timeline
Category: Relationships and Society > Religion
Asked by: darwinbedford-ga
List Price: $2.50
Posted: 13 Sep 2006 12:46 PDT
Expires: 13 Oct 2006 12:46 PDT
Question ID: 764973
According to the Bible, how much time passed in years between God
making the world in six days and the birth of Jesus Christ?  If the Bible
does not reveal the length of time then what does the Christian
community consider the length was?

Request for Question Clarification by cynthia-ga on 20 Sep 2006 05:04 PDT
There seems to be some discrepancy...!

The Bible Timeline of History
http://www.bible.ca/b-bible-timeline-history.htm

BIBLICAL CHRONOLOGY - by Ron and Mary Nell Wyatt
http://www.wyattnewsletters.com/articles/chronochart.htm

Ussher-Lightfoot Calendar
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ussher-Lightfoot_Calendar

The Bible and the age of the Earth
http://www.eadshome.com/Ageofearth.htm 

More here:

genesis "birth of christ" timeline
://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=genesis+%22birth+of+christ%22+timeline

Do any of these timelines help?

Request for Question Clarification by cynthia-ga on 20 Sep 2006 12:36 PDT
Here's one that looks very well thought out:

A Timeline of Biblical and Early Christian Events
http://www.ulcmn.org/Studies/Bible%20Timeline.PDF#search=%22bible%20creation%20%22birth%20of%20christ%22%20timeline%22

Clarification of Question by darwinbedford-ga on 21 Sep 2006 11:22 PDT
According to the Bible, how much time passed in years between God
creating Adam and the birth of Jesus Christ?  If the Bible
does not reveal the length of time then what does the Christian
community consider the length was?
Answer  
There is no answer at this time.

Comments  
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: myoarin-ga on 13 Sep 2006 13:16 PDT
 
Just a free comment to start you off.
Here is a site that discusses the subject.  You may have heard of
Bishop Ussher's calculation that "established the first day of
creation as Sunday 23 October 4004 BC."
It is only a short way down on this site:
http://www.smartchristian.com/?page_id=285

The Christian Community is does not have a consensus on the subject, I
believe I may say without contradiction.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: jack_of_few_trades-ga on 13 Sep 2006 13:56 PDT
 
When taking historical bible accounts literally, most scholars come up
with an answer between 4,000 and 8,000 years between creation and
Jesus.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: fruitfly_-ga on 13 Sep 2006 17:12 PDT
 
We can precisely calculate the time from the CREATION OF ADAM to Jesus:

From the creation of
  Adam                  4026B.C.E.

To the start of the
  Flood                 2370B.C.E.        1,656 years

To the validating of
  the Abrahamic
  covenant              1943B.C.E.          427 years

To the Exodus from
  Egypt                 1513B.C.E.          430 years

To the start of the
  temple construction   1034B.C.E.          479 years

To the division of
  the kingdom            997B.C.E.           37 years

To the desolation of
  Judah                  607B.C.E.          390 years

To the return of the
  Jews from exile        537B.C.E.           70 years

To the rebuilding of
  Jerusalem?s walls      455B.C.E.           82 years

To the baptism of
  Jesus                   29C.E.            483 years

...but not from the CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE to Jesus because the days
mentioned were not the days consisted of 24 hrs.
Gee! Sometimes even I say 'the days of my childhood' or 'in the days
of my grandfather', but that doesn't mean my childhood lasted several
days or THAT my grandfather lived for several days!!!
In matter of fact the Hebrew word for ?day?  - yohm -, is used in a
variety of ways in the Bible. In the very account of creation we have
?day? used to refer to three different periods of time:
1) ?Day? is used to refer to the daylight hours, as when we read: ?God
began calling the light Day, but the darkness he called Night.?
2)It is used to refer to both day and night, as when we read: ?There
came to be evening and there came to be morning, a first day.?
And 3) ?day? is also used to refer to the entire time period involved
in creation of the heavens and the earth: ?This is a history of the
heavens and the earth in the time of their being created, in the day
that Jehovah God made earth and heaven.??Gen. 1:5; 2:4.

Then again, on more than one occasion Jehovah God used a day to
represent a year. This he did in connection with the Israelites in the
wilderness and with his prophet Ezekiel. His Word says: ?A day for a
year, a day for a year, you will answer for your errors.? ?A day for a
year, a day for a year, is what I have given you.? (Num. 14:34; Ezek.
4:6)
Also, not only one year, but even a thousand years are at times
represented as one day in God?s Word. As the prophet Moses mused: ?For
a thousand years are in your eyes but as yesterday when it is past,
and as a watch during the night.?

In the Christian Greek Scriptures ?day? is also used to refer to other
periods of time, not just to twenty-four hours.
For example, Jesus on one occasion said: ?Abraham your father rejoiced
greatly in the prospect of seeing my day, and he saw it and rejoiced.?
Likewise we read of such expressions by his followers as ?Christ?s
day,? ?Jehovah?s day,? and ?the great day of God the Almighty.?
Surely none of these are meant to be limited to just twenty-four
hours. (John 8:56; Phil. 2:16; 1Thess. 5:2; Rev. 16:14)

The foregoing makes it clear that a ?day? from God?s viewpoint is not
necessarily limited to twenty-four hours and that's why we can
calculate the time "only" from the creation of Adam.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: pugwashjw65-ga on 13 Sep 2006 21:18 PDT
 
On top of what Fruitfly stated, we have the existing proof of dinosaur
bones, among which NO bones of people have been found. The Bible does
limit the timespan of man on the earth [ Genesis ch. 5, the
Patriarchs] and the geneology of Jesus at Matthew ch. 1 and Luke ch.3.
But the creation of the universe, including the earth, and its
animals, quite easily could have taken the billions of years that the
scientists take delight in telling us about. The Bible just does not
say. The 'days' of Genesis could be a billion years each.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: fp-ga on 14 Sep 2006 00:44 PDT
 
A Wikipedia article on "Dating Creation" (including a section on "Date
of Creation according to the Christian Pentateuch / Jewish Torah"):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dating_Creation
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: jack_of_few_trades-ga on 14 Sep 2006 05:52 PDT
 
I find it interesting that so many bible scholars (and not so
scholarly people) like to pull a single word out of context to prove a
point.

Look at Genesis chapter 1, notice how every time the word Yom is used
it is followed by "And there was evening, and their was morning, the
first day" (or the second day, or the third day...)
There is a very clear distinction here that there was evening and
morning and that was a single day.  If Moses had intended to suggest
(or even allow for) the possibility that these days were thousands or
millions of years then he would have used much different words:
"Some Hebrew ?time? words
There are several Hebrew words which refer to a long period of time.4
These include qedem which is the main one?word term for 'ancient' and
is sometimes translated 'of old'; olam means 'everlasting' or
'eternity' and is translated 'perpetual', 'of old' or 'for ever'; dor
means 'a revolution of time' or 'an age' and is sometimes translated
'generations'; tamid means 'continually' or 'for ever'; ad means
'unlimited time' or 'for ever'; orek when used with ym is translated
'length of days'; shanah means 'a year' or 'a revolution of time'
(from the change of seasons); netsach means 'for ever'. Words for a
shorter time span include eth (a general term for time); and moed,
meaning 'seasons' or 'festivals'. Let us consider how some of these
could have been used. "
http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v19/i1/days.asp

There are many ways Moses could have written this account.  However he
chose to specify "day"... evening, morning, day 1.  That is about as
clear as he possibly could have been in conveying a single day.

I do lean towards this belief that they were in fact single days.  I'm
not 100% sure.  But I do know that the Moses' wording is very
intential to mean real days.  So if you take this Genesis account as
it is written then you must see that these are single days.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: myoarin-ga on 14 Sep 2006 09:57 PDT
 
Hmm, I didn't know that Moses wrote Genesis, but if he did  - since he
wasn't there at Creation -  he must have based his text on a version
that was current in his time, at best, one that was passed down from
Adam and Eve to Cain and/or Seth and on to all their descendents.  But
Adam and Eve also weren't around for the first "days" of the Creation.
 So where did Moses get his information?  It seems unlikely that he
would have withheld the fact that the Creator spoke to him on the
subject.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: fruitfly_-ga on 14 Sep 2006 09:58 PDT
 
Hi  jack_of_few_trades,

You are definetly right about one thing, and that is when you say
"there are many ways Moses couls could have written this account".

Sure, he could have used one of the words you named. 
And not only that: there are many   doctrines true christians and
so-called christians disagree. So one of the most obvious questions
would be 'why did God allow that?' Why didn't He make it easier for
all the sincere researchers to find the truth?
In short, why didn't He say plain and simple: 'there is fiery hell' or
'there isn't such thing as a fiery hell', or 'there is eternal soul'
or maybe 'there isn't eternal soul'? Or about this day we are talking
about.
Indeed, why does the Bible abound with statements that can be
understood both ways, or sometimes in more than two ways?!

Actually, it was that particular question that was puzzling me for
some time. As a consequence, not being able to figure it out was
driving me away from the Bible and made me consider it just a
contradictory word of men.

Apostle Paul has explained the reason with these words: 
"For the word of God is alive and exerts power and is sharper than any
two-edged sword and pierces even to the dividing of soul and spirit,
and of joints and [their] marrow, and [is] able to discern thoughts
and intentions of [the] heart." (Hebrews 4:12)

That means the Bible was written in such a way that people who
approach it with wrong motives will stumble and won't get the full
meaning. Of course, that doesn't mean they are evil or something...
But ee all have some prejudices or some favoured ideas we cherish so
we are looking for in the Bible for the parts and excerpts that
support them. When approached this way, the Bible cannot be understood
as it was meant to be!
Not only that: there were times when  the truth was 'locked up'
regardless of the motives - that was simply not the time for the
disclosure of some truths (the true God has a plan and a timeline)!:
?And as for you, O Daniel, make secret the words and seal up the book,
until the time of [the] end. Many will rove about, and the [true]
knowledge will become abundant.? (Daniel 12:4)

So, what's the big secret?
-It's a simple one: when exploring some Biblical truths, the Bible
should be taken in consideration AS A WHOLE! Some parts of the Bible
explain others. (Compare Revelation 21:1 with Isaiah 57:20, for
instance)

When someone approaches the Bible in this way, there is simply NO
CHANCE he can understand it in more than one way!

So, when you say "I find it interesting that so many bible scholars (and not so
scholarly people) like to pull a single word out of context to prove a
point.",  - I can't agree more with you.
BUT!!!! To put something out of the Biblical context means to ignore it as a whole!

I have shown you other instances when the Bible speaks of the days
other than 24 hrs.
Not only that; even Moses himself in that very same report uses 3
(three) different understandings of the word "day".

So, at least, AT LEAST, you can't INSIST on understanding "day" as a
day of 24 hours!
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: jack_of_few_trades-ga on 14 Sep 2006 10:38 PDT
 
Myoarin, 
We are having a biblical debate based on what is written in the bible,
of course we use what is written in the bible as the basis for our
arguments...

Let's say that I made the statement "Birds fly south for the winter"
And you say "Jack is clearly wrong because dogs chase cats"

When you want to make a point about what is written in the bible, you
don't first make the assumption that the writers of the bible could
have misinterperited reality, because that is not the point of the
discussion... this discussion is clearly about what is written in the
bible.

Fruitfly,
Hell: There are many references to Hell in the bible.  Mathew and Mark
have several. Peter and James have a couple.  The Psalms have many
(however many of these are poetic writing and may not consider Hell as
the place, but more a state of being).  Several mentions in the
Proverbs.  The bible is very clear that Hell is in fact a place.
Soul: Whether or not our terminology with "soul" is correct is a side
note, but the bible is very clear in many instances that there is in
fact eternal life.  So something of our being (I'd like to call this
my soul) will live forever.

You're absolutely right about taking the bible as a whole.  At the
same time, it is impossible to have a logical conversation with
someone about a specific topic if you are only willing to discuss the
entire bible in one statement... so there are many instances where
breaking the bible into parts (for discussion purposes) without losing
the context of the whole bible is important.  To look at 1 word is
usually dangerous.  To take a single verse without it's context is
doable in the right crowd but the speaker should be very careful to
know the context that they are explaining the verse in is appropriate.

I don't have the time to research every mentioning of "day" that you
gave, but the Hebrew for the word "day" is either a different word
that Yom or is Yom without the context of "And there was evening, and
their was morning, the
first day".  That distinction is crucial.  Genesis is unique in that
it is a historical account of individual days with the context "and
there was evening, and there was morning".  If you can find that
wording anywhere in the bible where it is not refering to a single day
then I will gladly eat my words and change my stance, but no one has
ever been able to show me that before... and given that wording, there
is no way it is intended as anything but a single day.

"A 'prophetic day' is usually taken as a year. Most biblical scholars
justify this definition by quoting Numbers 14:34 and Ezekiel 4:6, in
which it is said that a day of the Lord is equal to a year. But in
recognizing that a number-archetype may be involved, 'one' prophetic
day may equal 1 year, or 1 decade, or 1 century, or 1 millennium {10},
etc. Usually, calendar years are intended, but in one instance
(11:8-10), the 'day' is a 'prophetic year' or a 'time' (see below).

An 'evening and a morning' is taken as an EXACT 'prophetic day.' The
justification for this definition is that it works well in the one
place it is encountered: Daniel 8:13. "
http://www.bci.org/prophecy-fulfilled/apoc1.htm
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: fruitfly_-ga on 14 Sep 2006 10:39 PDT
 
Hi myoarin,

Yes,  jack_of_few_trades is right, Moses wrote also the first book of
the Bible. He could have received some informations directly by divine
revelation and some, under the direction of holy spirit, through oral
transmission. It is also possible that Moses possessed written
documents preserved by his forefathers.
Also, since his great-grandfather Levi was the half brother of Joseph,
these details would be accurately known within his own family. Levi?s
life may even have overlapped that of Moses? father, Amram. Further,
Jehovah?s spirit would again assure the correct recording of this
portion of the Scriptures.?Ex. 6:16, 18,20; Num. 26:59.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: myoarin-ga on 14 Sep 2006 12:01 PDT
 
Okay, okay.  I love the Bible, but I must be a religious liberal or worse.

"Religious liberals, Agnostics, Atheists, Humanists, secularists, etc.
generally reject the inerrancy and inspiration of the Bible."
http://www.religioustolerance.org/com_geev.htm

Myoarin
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: slakemoth-ga on 15 Sep 2006 08:22 PDT
 
All this "blah-dy, Blah blah" about a day meaning 1,000 years etc or
even a billion years is typical nonsense you read when people go to
extremes to try to reconcile the biblical account with what they know
to be true... That the Earth, and the Universe is waaaaay older than
what the Bible leads us to believe IN A LITERAL READING.. ( more on
that later). bottom line Jack of few Trades quoted the answer for you
plain as "day".. The Genesis text says very clearly "And there was
evening, and there was morning?the second day".... "And there was
evening, and there was morning?the third day." etc...  making it all
very clear that the day is a day... don't muddy the waters to try to
explain it all.... So begin on day one and add it all up... 6,032
years old.... ( cough, cough...)

SO what are we left with... "Answers In Genesis" a pathetic site a
best adheres to the literal account and goes to extreme to shoehorn in
this literal interpretation... even though it flies in the face of all
science and conventional wisdom... but if you want to believe that
version as the absolute truth... well so be it... thats your
problem... All these other "versions" come from people still trying to
rationalize modern science with ancient writings. You get a great
flavor of that in the various responses given here.

or, you can look at the Genesis account as the scholars, Atheists, and
"religious liberals" do.. as a collections of the ancient Hebrews
stories and poetry dealing with their God and the world around them.
Stories that revel in God's power and glory and the world around them.
To dwell on the "minutia" of the literal account faisl to see the
reason the writings were so important. Genesis is not about details,
but rather an ancient understanding of the world that surrounded them,
how they fit into that world, and an aknowledgment of God's place in
the whole...

The initial question has been answered pretty well here... but for my
money the real answer was given at the very beginning by Myoarin...

"The Christian Community does not have a consensus on the subject, I
believe I may say without contradiction."
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: martyty-ga on 19 Sep 2006 13:52 PDT
 
What makes you sure the entire universe was created in six
"Earth-days"?  "Day" is just the english translation from Hebrew.  I
do believe God could have made the earth in six 24 hr time periods,
but back to your question, from the time God said "Let there be light"
to the time when Jesus was born, could be billions of years.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: jack_of_few_trades-ga on 20 Sep 2006 04:57 PDT
 
Marty, I suggest reading through the comments.  There is some great
info in the debate above including the words in Genesis:
"and there was evening, and their was morning, the first day"
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: myoarin-ga on 20 Sep 2006 06:34 PDT
 
Maybe the earth rotated very slowly at the time of Creation ...
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: myoarin-ga on 20 Sep 2006 09:49 PDT
 
Sorry, the above was a bit flippant, but not meant to offend anyone.

I still see a problem with "And the evening and the morning were the ... day."
  (KVJ text below)

God created light and separated it from the already existing darkness
and defined them as "day" and "night" on the first day.  But He didn't
create the "lights in the firmament of the heaven" until the fourth
day, for the purpose "to divide the day from the night; and let them
be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:"   "... AND
FOR DAYS ..."

This passage uses "day" in two meanings: "day" = light ("night" =
darkness), and as a measure of earthly time in the context "days,
seasons, years".
(just as we still use the word in both meanings).

"And the evening and the morning ..." describe the latter usage of
"day" with setting and rising sun.  Although God had already divided
the light from the darkness on the first "day", it wasn't until the
fourth "day" that He created the heavenly bodies that allowed evening
and morning, defining "day" as a measure of earthly time.

I don't know how an absolutely literal understanding of the Bible text
can explain this by insisting that "day" must mean a calendar day as
we know it.

I prefer to understand the "days" of the Creation to be Godly measures
of time in the sense of these passages  - taking 1000 years as a
poetic expression for a period of time greater than a person can truly
comprehend:
# Psalm 90:4
For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is
past, and as a watch in the night.

# 2 Peter 3:8
But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with
the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

Regards to all, Myoarin
 
Book 01 	Genesis
001:001 	In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
001:002	And 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.
001:003	And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
001:004	And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the
light from the darkness.
001:005	And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called
Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
001:006	And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the
waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.
001:007	And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were
under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament:
and it was so.
001:008	And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the
morning were the second day.
001:009	And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered
together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.
001:010	And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together
of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.
001:011	And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb
yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose
seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.
001:012	And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed
after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself,
after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
001:013	And the evening and the morning were the third day.
001:014	And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the
heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs,
and for seasons, and for days, and years:
001:015	And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to
give light upon the earth: and it was so.
001:016	And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the
day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.
001:017	And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light
upon the earth,
001:018	And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the
light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.
001:019	And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
Subject: Re: Biblical timeline
From: martyty-ga on 21 Sep 2006 10:17 PDT
 
this site has a good timeline.
http://www.reasons.org/resources/apologetics/creation_timeline/index.shtml

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