So what do you think Paul means by “dead to the law”? What are the ramifications of being “dead to the law”?
You must be Bible Students or very closely associated. May Jehovah Bless you.
In my eightieth year, originally from Berlin Germany, in Australia since ’52 I was with Jehovah’s Witnesses from 1958 until January 2008 when I was disfellow-shipped out of their company for allowing the Bible to have the last word.
Enjoyed the above dissertation. 144000 certainly literal in number but symbolic in structure.
In the process of currently explaining the Great Crowd/company to other Bible Students and on my website I came across your site as I was looking for the phrase Great Company to see if others beside Charles Taze Russell use company rather than multitude or crowd.
Your quote from Ezekiel 16, for which I thank you, is actually much more significant than the Bible Students, Jehovah’s Witnesses Christianity and other Christians may realise.
Verse 63 of Ezekiel 16, quoted below from the American Standard Version of 1901, speaks of Israel being forgiven her collective sins. That was Israel’s final atonement or covering over their transgressions by their final atonement, the Lamb Jesus who took away the sins of the only people who could actually sin, because only they had law to sin against. Jesus was also their second Passover lamb who saved Jehovah’s firstborn son Israel (Exodus 4:22) from total destruction.
Here is the verse couples to Strong’s:
Ezekiel 16:63 that thou mayest remember, and be confounded, and never open thy mouth any more, because of thy shame, when I have forgiven thee all that thou hast done, saith the Lord Jehovah.
a primitive root; v;
AV-atonement 71, purge 7, reconciliation 4, reconcile 3, forgive 3,
purge away 2, pacify 2, atonement…made 2, merciful 2, cleansed 1,
disannulled 1, appease 1, put off 1, pardon 1, pitch 1; 102
1) to cover, purge, make an atonement, make reconciliation,
cover over with pitch
1a) (Qal) to coat or cover with pitch
1b1) to cover over, pacify, propitiate
1b2) to cover over, atone for sin, make atonement for
1b3) to cover over, atone for sin and persons by legal rites
There is so much more, but the most important point is that Jesus came only for Israel with Mankind the ultimate beneficiary when that Seed of Abraham is finally in their destined elevated position of heavenly Government to bless all families of the earth past present and future by their having the same opportunity given originally to Adam to decide their own future and length of their lives for themselves.
Dieter G Hoffmann
Much of this you know, but there are some things you will not be aware of, but I trust will like to be aware of.
What was Photographed at 2:00 AM on Halloween 1981?
There was a strange story that appeared in the 1983 May/June issue of BAR magazine about some mysterious object being photographed in the wee hours of the morning of Halloween in 1981. Here in America, it would have been on Mischief Night. What was it? To find out, it is first necessary to know the solution to a very old brain teaser in the Bible. The ancient puzzle is this. What is the scientific significance of a brazen vessel that was in the temple of King Solomon, sometimes referred to as King Solomon’s sea? The puzzeling Biblical passages are as follows:
In II Chronicles 4:2-5 it reads:
2. Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about. 3. And under it was the similitude of oxen, which did compass it round about: ten in a cubit, compassing the sea round about. Two rows of oxen were cast, when it was cast.
4. It stood upon twelve oxen, three looking toward the north, and three looking toward the west, and three looking toward the south, and three looking toward the east: and the sea was set above upon them, and all their hinder parts were inward.
5. And the thickness of it was an handbreadth, and the brim of it like the work of the brim of a cup, with flowers of lilies; and it received and held three thousand baths.
Many scientists consider this passage to lack scientific integrity because it appears that the Bible is saying that the value of pi is three because 30 cubits divided by 10 cubits is three. The true value of pi rounded off to eight significant figures is 3.1415927. Furthermore, in I Kings 7:23-26 it states that the large basin had two-thousand baths in it. How could both values be right?
Before evaluating this problem, it is helpful to be aware of the history behind the search for the length of the Biblical cubit by scientists of the past.
Sir Isaac Newton was the first scientist in modern times to make an estimate of the cubit. He was lead to search for the length of the sacred cubit because his initial calculations on gravity were not working out right, and he suspected that the radius of the earth he was using as estimated by the ancient Greek Eratosthenes was off.
Eratosthenes had also made the statement that 210,000 Egyptian cubits was equal to a degree of arc along a great circle of the earth. Newton thought that he might be able to derive a more accurate value for the radius of the earth by finding out the true length of the Egyptian cubit through studying the dimensions of the Great Pyramid. He concluded that the Great Pyramid was built on the basis of two cubits, one which he called a profane cubit, and the other which he referred to as a sacred cubit. He thought that the sacred cubit (which he estimated at somewhere from 24.8 to 25.02 inches) was the same cubit used in the building of the Biblical Tabernacle and Temple. He finally settled on a value for the sacred cubit of 24.88 inches and wrote up his analysis in a rare but important monogram.
Many years later in 1859, John Taylor, a member of the Royal Society of London, submitted a paper to his colleagues. His thesis was that the Great Pyramid had been built by Divine decree, much like the Bible says Noah’s ark was, and had been built on the basis of a cubit of 25.025 inches which he believed was the sacred Biblical cubit. Taylor also declared from his study of the Great Pyramid that this 25.025 inch cubit had a scientific value equal to 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius.
Peter Tompkins, writing in his book “Secrets of the Great Pyramid”, had this to say about Taylor:
“To Taylor, the creation of Adam had occurred in 4000 BC and the Flood in 2400 BC. As might be expected, Taylor, who had been known as a benign and dignified old gentleman, had a hard time convincing his quiet Victorian contemporaries of such wild and revolutionary theories, especially as they were just then being rocked by Darwin’s theory of the descent of man. A paper on the Pyramid which he presented to the prestigious Royal Society was rejected with the suggestion that such a paper might be more appropriate for the Society of Antiquarians.” .
There was only one member of the Royal Society who took Taylor’s study seriously—Piazzi Smyth, the Astronomer Royal of Scotland. He petitioned the Society for funds to go to Egypt and check out Taylor’s ideas. The Society not only refused his request, but even sent back part of the government grant on the plea that there was nothing going on that needed it.
Undaunted, Piazzi and his wife used their own funds and went to Egypt anyway, where he made very careful internal and external measurements of the Great Pyramid. He came to the conclusion that Taylor was indeed right.
Upon his return he informed the Royal Society of his findings. By this time Taylor had died, and Smyth had no sympathetic ear when he tried to convince his colleagues of his conclusions.
He tells what happened.
“…The Council of the Royal Society absolutely refused to let my paper appear before an open meeting of the Society…I then sent in a conditional resignation of my fellowship, to be read in public together with the reasons why I so resigned…the Council held back those reasons, and merely announced that I had resigned… I therefore printed a pamphlet giving the whole case, and sent a copy to every member of the Society… The next annual general meeting of all the Fellows was held, and no more was made by anyone (so far as I have yet heard) to question the Council’s proceedings, or vindicate the true size of the ancient Great Pyramid… In fact, the whole of the members have homologated everything done by the council in supporting one side, and suppressing the other side, of the Great Pyramid measures…”
Who was on the Council of the Royal Society that absolutely refused to let Smyth’s paper appear before an open meeting of the Society?
“The X Club was a secret society in London which worked to further evolutionary thought and suppress scientific opposition to it. It was powerful, for all scientific papers considered by the Royal Society were first approved by this small group of nine members. Chaired by Huxley, its members made contacts and powerfully affected British scientific associations (*Michael Pitman, Adam and Evolution, 1984, p. 64). “’but what do they do?’ asked a curious journalist. ‘They run British science,’ a professor replied, ‘and on the whole, they don’t do it badly’” (R. Milner, Encyclopedia of Evolution, 1990, p. 467).”
Checking the internet shows that the controversy over the length of the cubit is still alive, and still being debated.
The question is, can these claims of Taylor and Smyth as to the temple cubit being 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius have any other unknown significance? The answer is yes, provided we have two other important pieces of information.
The first piece of information was provided by the archeologist William Foxwell Albright who estimated that the Biblical bath was around 22 liters. He derived this value by comparing the broken top of a piece of pottery found at Lachish marked with the words “one royal bath” with jars that were complete. Other archeological estimates for the bath yield values of 22.7, 22.8, 22.9 and 23.3 liters.
The second very important piece of information is supplied by the first century Jewish historian Josephus. He states in “Antiquities of the Jews”, Book VIII, Chapter III and verse 5:
“Solomon also cast a brazen sea, the figure of which was of a hemisphere…Now this sea contained three thousand baths.”
The passage in I Kings says that there was 2000 baths in the vessel and in II Chronicles it says 3000. If we assume that we are being told that the vessel was filled to two-thirds of its capacity and that if filled completely it held 3000 baths, we can substitute 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius into the dimensions given for King Solomon’s sea and see what happens.
The vessel we are told was a handbreadth thick, and by definition that is one-seventh of a sacred cubit. A plausible and commonly held view is that the 10-cubit line was the outside diameter and the 30-cubit line was the inside circumference at the top.
A 10-cubit outer diameter and an inside 30-cubit circumference will calculate out to a wall thickness of slightly over .225 cubits, whereas it should be approximately .143 cubits. Thus the interpretation that the 30 cubit-line was the inside circumference and the 10-cubit line was an outside diameter seems somewhat suspect.
We shall therefore make the assumption that the 10 cubits is the inside diameter and that the 30 cubits is a measurement that was made at a lower level. The scientific significance of the 30-cubit line being at a lower level will be explained a little later.
William Winston, who translated the writings of Josephus and also filled the chair at Cambridge after Newton, made the assumption that the 10 cubits was the inside diameter, but doesn’t explain why the 30-cubit line was not used in his calculations. He used a 21 inch cubit and gave both the 2000 and 3000 baths equal weight and thus gave two different estimates for the value of a bath.
Using a conventional hand held calculator, we can follow in his footsteps, but instead use 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius for the sacred cubit:
V = 2/3 p R3 (Formula for the volume of a hemisphere)
(One inch = 2.54 centimeters)
(1000.028 cm3 = 1 liter)
1. The polar radius of the earth is 3949.89 miles (1957 International Geological Survey)
2. The polar radius of the earth multiplied by 5280 ft./mile is 20855419 ft.
3. The length of the sacred cubit is taken to be 1/10,000,000th of this.
4. This produces a value of 2.0855419 ft. for the sacred cubit.
5. This multiplied by 12 inches per foot is 25.026502 inches for the sacred cubit
6. This multiplied by 5 gives the radius of King Solomon’s sea as 125.13251 inches
7. The radius multiplied by 2.54 centimeters per inch is 317.83657 centimeters
8. The radius multiplied by itself three times (i.e.cubed) is 32107875 cm3
9. (On many simple hand held calculators, hitting the times key once and the equals key twice will cube a number.)
10. The radius cubed multiplied by two-thirds is 21405250 cm3
11. This value multiplied by pi is 67246577 cm3
12. This total volume divided by three-thousand is 22415.525 cm3
13. One bath in liters is this value divided by 1000.028
14. Rounded off to 6 figures yields 22.4149 liters for one bath.
This value for the bath is extremely close to the standard unit of volume in chemistry known as a molar volume, the amount of space taken up by Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules at STP, and is usually given in chemistry textbooks as 22.414 liters. It is derived in a completely different way from the kinetic theory of gases.
It turns out that the volume in Biblical baths of any size hemisphere can be readily determined by cubing its diameter and multiplying by three, provided Biblical cubits of 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius are used in measuring the diameter.
If for example you had a hemisphere of two cubits in diameter, you would cube the diameter of two cubits and then multiply by three (2 cubed x 3) and get 24 baths for the volume of the hemisphere. If a hemisphere were 5 cubits across, you would cube the diameter of 5 cubits and then multiply by three (5 cubed x 3) and get 375 baths as the volume of the hemisphere. In the case of King Solomon’s sea the total volume would be 10 cubed x 3 = 3,000 baths.
As can be seen by the calculations above, the thirty-cubit line that has usually been assumed to be the circumference at the very top does not enter into the calculations at all.
If the 30-cubit line encircled the outside of the vessel, then this would place the 30-cubit line on a hemispherical vessel with a wall thickness of 1/7th of a cubit at a “latitude” of about 21.8 degrees south of the “equator” (i.e. the very top) of the brazen vessel.
The center of curvature of this 30-cubit line encircling the outside of the vessel would divide the vertical inside 5-cubit radius into the golden mean with an error of less than .03%.
The outside thirty-cubit line may have been straddled by the two rows of decorative, knob-shaped oxen-heads that encircled the brazen sea. This utilization of the thirty-cubit line would be for visually aesthetic reasons, because it is known by architects, artists and musical composers that the use of the golden mean or ratio maximizes visual and audio beauty.
Index cards (3 x 5 and 5 x 8), business cards, playing cards, flags etc. are based on this ratio because it is the rectangle whose length to width ratio is the most visually pleasing to the eye.
The Great Pyramid used the golden ratio in it. Mozart and Claude Debussy and other composers used the golden ratio in their music to achieve a peak of audio beauty. Leonardo Divinci also used it in his painting of the Last Supper.
The golden mean or ratio is approximated by the Fibonacci numbers. The first twelve are 1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,34,55,89,144. Each succeeding number is gotten by adding together the two previous numbers before it. When the larger of any two adjacent numbers in the series is divided by the preceeding smaller number, the golden mean is approximated to a better and better degree the further out in the series you go. The actual value of the golden mean is one-half the square root of 5 plus one-half which equals (1.6180339887…).
If you take the Fibonacci numbers and divide each one by its neighbor on the right you get the following fractions 1/1, 1/2, 2/3, 3/5, 5/8, 8/13, 13/21, 21/34, 34/55, 55/89, 89/144.
According to a mathematics book entitled Mathematics The Story of Numbers, Symbols and Space, it says:
‘These fractions describe the growth of plants. When new leaves grow from the stem of a plant, they spiral around the stem. The spiral turns as it climbs. The amount of turning from one leaf to the next is a fraction or part of a complete circle around the stem. This fraction is always one of the Fibonacci fractions. This spacing prevents the higher leaves from shading lower ones too much.”
The Ark of the Covenant when viewed from the front was an approximation to the golden mean or ratio. In the Old Testament book of Exodus in chapter 25 and verse 10, God gives instructions for building the Ark of the Covenant. He says it was to be made 2.5 cubits long by 1.5 cubits high by 1.5 cubits wide, which when viewed from the front is the same ratio as 5 x 3, an approximation to the golden ratio.
Pizzia Smith made the intriguing statement that if the Ark of the Covenant was ever found, it would prove its own case by matching the dimensions of the 25 inch cubit. Has the actual Ark of the Covenant been found? What was it that was photographed in a concealed tunnel in the side of Mount Pisgah in Jordan at 2:00 AM in the morning of Halloween 1981? You may want to check out the following website: ).
David E. Gracely
Absurd. Quite a false conclusion in my opinion. It is not eons of time since Adam. It is the same generation that saw the destruction of the temple in 70AD. A scriptural generation is about 40 years. That’s what Jesus meant.
There are indeed some that come to that conclusion; nevertheless, the evidence all around us tells us that the heavens and earth did not pass away when Jerusalem was destroyed. One could say that the Law “age” with its sacrifices did indeed pass away when the temple was destroyed, although in another sense the Law age ended when John the Baptiser died. (Luke 16:16) The apostles asked a question that covers more than just the destruction of the temple; they wanted to know that if Jesus left and the temple was destroyed, how were they know that he had returned and that his parousia — his presence as king — had begun; that parousia is not single event, but covers a period of time in which many things happen in succession.
The “age” (Greek, transliterated, Aion, Strong’s #165) of 2 Corinthians 4:4 has certainly not passed away, for we find Satan is still blinding the minds of the unbelievers. Nor has the “world” (Greek transliterated, Kosmos, Strong’s #2889) of 1 John 2:7 yet passed away, for the lusts of man still exist. For the lusts of the world that came into the world through Adam’s sin to end, the creation now under bondage to corruption – a crooked condition — and subjected to vanity must be brought out of that condition, which, for the world in general, is accomplished while Satan is abyssed.
I am still hoping to make a series of studies on preterism, God willing, although I have, at present, my hands full, figuratively speaking, with other things that I need to do.
See the studies at:
A generation in the scriptures is whatever is made of it in the context. For instance, Matthew 1:17 states, “So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations.” Although these three groups are assigned fourteen generations each, it should be obvious that if we examine the average generation for each group, we find that the generation length differs. The time period from the birth of Abraham to the birth of David would produce an average of over 60 or 70 years for each generation (depending on which chronology one uses).
I appreciate your effort for teaching us the word of God may he bless you in abundance
Well thought out and presented.
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You seem to be implying that Jewish followers of Yeshua today are under no obligation to be circumcised and obey Biblical Jewish Law. How do you reconcile this, though, with the “zeal” of the original Jewish disciples of Yeshua, including the Apostle Shaul/Paul, for the Mosaic Law, including circumcision, as described in Acts 21, not to mention elsewhere? Were these original Jewish believers not just doing what Yeshua told them to do in the Sermon on the Mount? When Yeshua, for example, said, Do not even look at another man’s wife to lust after her…, isn’t this what it means to be zealous for the Law? Not just to avoid gross adultery or other sin but also to avoid even any hint of adultery or other sin? In Deut 30, moreover, Yehovah strictly commanded the Jews to obey His commandments forever and promised that if they did so, anywhere, anytime, He would forgive them and bring them back to Israel? Doesn’t anytime include now?
These are just a few examples, which suggest to me that Jewish believers today should be zealous for the Law, just like Yeshua and the original Jewish disciples. Gentiles disciples, however, are the “uncircumcision” and are not under Biblical Jewish Law, don’t have to celebrate Passover, etc., and don’t have to be circumcised.
Yes, there are some passages, mainly, if not only in Shaul, saying that the Law is over and that sort of thing, but these passages must be reconciled with the passages above, which state that “the rule” in all congregations is that each should remain in the state in which he or she was called and that Jews should remain Jewish, and Gentiles should not seek circumcision (see I Cor 7). Man does not live by bread alone but by every Word that comes from the mouth of Yehovah. This means that we must not neglect some passages and overemphasize others but that we must include all passages and thus arrive at the original intended, correct interpretation. If we do this, I would arrive at the idea that Jewish disciples today must be zealous for the Law, just like our ancient predecessors, but we are no longer under the Law in the sense that the sacrifice of Yeshua enables all of us, despite our best efforts, to overcome our inevitable failure to keep the whole Law. This interpretation, though hard for the modern mind, polluted as it is by centuries of conflict, mis- and dis-information, to understand, enables us to avoid throwing out a whole Biblical theme having to do with a continuing distinction between Jewish and Gentile believers. Yes, there is no longer Jew nor Greek or male and female, etc., but the fact is that Jewish men still are Jewish men and don’t get pregnant, but Jewish women still get pregnant and are unclean seven days after childbirth (see Lev 12:12), not to mention other differences between men and women. So likewise there are still differences between Jews and Gentiles, for example, Jews must be circumcised, as Shaul circumcised Timothy because Timothy’s mother was Jewish, but Shaul did not circumcise Titus, who was pure Gentile.