2

And now for something completely different:

Besides being the anniversary of the end of hostilities in WWI, today is 11-11-11, which surely is significant somehow. ;-)

The Bible is full of numbers: counting, measuring, numerology, and even calculations. Some of the usual objections to the veracity of the Bible center around mathematical "mistakes". Many prophesies turn on the significance of particular numbers. There are interesting translation questions to be asked in regard to units of measure that are not in use anymore.

So my challenge to you is to ask a question about mathematics in the Bible.


For your puzzling pleasure, here's a question that would be off-topic on the main site:

What percentage of the verses in the Bible contain a number of some sort?

To make everything fair, we'll us the King James version.

  • I've been playing a lot of Professor Layton in my spare, spare time. – Jon Ericson Nov 11 '11 at 22:25
  • I don't think I could ask a question related to math in the Bible without first searching the web for an answer, which totally defeats the purpose. – user146 Nov 12 '11 at 1:35
  • @JustinY: I don't see why. Self-answers are encouraged according to the FAQ. – Jon Ericson Nov 12 '11 at 2:31
  • more than you would think if you have not counted words such as Eglaim - double ponds, Ephraim - double ash-heap, Egypt - double straits, Merathaim - double rebellion, etc. Also according to the rules of Rabbi Eliezer "The particles “et”, “gam”, and “af”, which are superfluous indicate that something which is not explicitly stated must be regarded as included in the passage under consideration". Rashi uses this rule to determine that Cain had a twin sister and that Abel had two sisters (he was a triplet). So et, gam and af can act like numbers. – Bob Jones Nov 13 '11 at 0:02
  • Since each Hebrew letter is also a number which is used in Jewish interpretation, 100% of the OT has numbers. – Bob Jones Nov 13 '11 at 0:02
  • @Bob Jones: Good thinking. You're on the right track. ;-) – Jon Ericson Nov 13 '11 at 3:54
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    In the King James version, every verse has a number as an address. That's a riddle. Soon you'll be seeing sensus plenior for yourself ;-) – Bob Jones Nov 13 '11 at 8:55
  • @Bob Jones: You win the big prize! That's the answer I had in mind. – Jon Ericson Nov 13 '11 at 16:16
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    This has been an excellent example that the only acceptable answer to a riddle is the one the author intended. This is a primary rule that keeps sensus plenior from becoming free-for-all allegory. God intended to speak of Christ in all the scriptures. To say otherwise is just on the wrong side of the argument. – Bob Jones Nov 14 '11 at 5:11
  • Some good questions you've posted so far. Wish I could come up with something to jump in on the fun. – Soldarnal Nov 15 '11 at 23:28
  • @Soldarnal: It might be that this isn't the most accessible challenge. ;-) – Jon Ericson Nov 15 '11 at 23:36

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