Maths of Hours, etc

The Bible Book of Genesis – Geology, Archaeology, and Theology – Part 10

Genesis 7 & 8: The Cataclysmic Deluge Account – a Worldwide Catastrophe or Local Flood? Part 2

The Chronology and Timelines of the Cataclysmic Deluge

Putting the dates given in the Genesis account of the Cataclysmic Deluge from Genesis 7:1 to Genesis 8:22 into a table we find evidence pointing to the understanding that the world before and during the flood ran on a 360-day calendar, rather than a lunar calendar of 354 days or solar calendar of 365.25 days. The key scriptures are:

  • Genesis 7:1-4; The flood is promised to start in 7 days’ time. Animals board.
  • Genesis 7:11; Marks the start of the Cataclysmic Deluge.
  • Genesis 7:12; Rain stops after continuous rain for 40 days and 40 nights.
  • Genesis 7:24; Genesis 8:1-4; Waters slowly go down for another 110 days, totaling 150 days before Ark runs aground on mountains of Ararat.
  • Genesis 8:5; Waters continue to drop to show the tops of mountains after another 74 days.
  • Genesis 8:13; Waters drained off sufficiently that the ground around the Ark was dry after another 84 days.
  • Genesis 8:14-16; God tells Noah he can leave the Ark after another 57 days. It is now 1 year and 10 days or 370 days after the Cataclysmic Deluge started.

Noah’s life

   

Year \ Month \Day

Scripture

Day Count

Total Elapsed Days

Event

(Civil Calendar)

  

1st Month: Tishri (Sept-Oct), 2nd Month: Marchesvan (Oct-Nov)

600

2

11

Genesis 7:1-4

1

 

Ark loaded: After that Jehovah said to Noah: “Go, you and all your household, into the ark, because you are the one I have seen to be righteous before me among this generation. 2 Of every clean beast you must take to yourself by sevens, the sire and its mate; and of every beast that is not clean just two, the sire and its mate; 3 also of the flying creatures of the heavens by sevens, male and female, to preserve offspring alive on the surface of the entire earth. 4 For in just seven days more I am making it rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and I will wipe every existing thing that I have made off the surface of the ground.”

600

2

12

 

2

  

600

2

13

 

3

  

600

2

14

 

4

  

600

2

15

 

5

  

600

2

16

 

6

  

600

2

17

Genesis 7:11

7

0

Rain and Flood start: 11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on this day all the springs of the vast watery deep were broken open and the floodgates of the heavens were opened. Equivalent Date in Modern Calendar = 31st October.

600

2

18

 

1

1

 

600

2

30

 

13

13

 

600

3

1

 

14

14

 

600

3

26

 

39

39

 

600

3

27

Genesis 7:12

40

40

Rain Stops: And the downpour upon the earth went on for forty days and forty nights.

600

3

28

 

41

41

 

600

3

29

 

42

42

 

600

3

30

 

43

43

 

600

4

1

 

44

44

 

600

4

30

 

73

73

 

600

5

1

 

74

74

 

600

5

30

 

103

103

 

600

6

1

 

104

104

 

600

6

30

 

133

133

 

600

7

1

 

134

134

 

600

7

16

 

149

149

 

600

7

17

Genesis 7:24; Genesis 8:1-4

150

150

Ark grounds on solid ground: “And the waters continued overwhelming the earth a hundred and fifty days.” Ark comes to rest: “After that God remembered Noah and every wild beast and every domestic animal that was with him in the ark, and God caused a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters began to subside. 2 And the springs of the watery deep and the floodgates of the heavens became stopped up, and so the downpour from the heavens was restrained. 3 And the waters began receding from off the earth, progressively receding; and at the end of a hundred and fifty days the waters were lacking. 4 And in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Arʹa·rat.” Equivalent in Modern Calendar – approximately 31 March

600

7

18

 

1

151

 

600

7

30

 

13

163

 

600

8

1

 

14

164

 

600

8

30

 

43

193

 

600

9

1

 

44

194

 

600

9

30

 

73

223

 

600

10

1

Genesis 8:5

1

224

Mountain tops appear: And the waters kept on progressively lessening until the tenth month. In the tenth month, on the first of the month, the tops of the mountains appeared.

600

10

30

 

30

253

 

600

11

1

 

31

254

 

600

11

9

 

39

262

 

600

11

10

Genesis 8:6

40

263

Raven sent out which returns: 6 So it occurred that at the end of forty days Noah proceeded to open the window of the ark that he had made. 7 After that he sent out a raven, and it continued flying outdoors, going and returning, until the waters dried off the earth.

600

11

11

 

1

264

 

600

11

30

 

20

283

 

600

12

1

 

21

284

 

600

12

9

 

29

292

 

600

12

10

Genesis 8:8-9

30

293

Dove sent out, first time returns empty: Later he sent out from him a dove to see whether the waters had abated from the surface of the ground. 9 And the dove did not find any resting place for the sole of its foot, and so it returned to him into the ark because the waters were yet upon the surface of the whole earth. At that, he put his hand out and took it and brought it to himself inside the ark.

600

12

11

 

1

294

 

600

12

17

 

7

300

 

600

12

18

Genesis 8:10-11

1

301

Dove returns with Olive leaf: And he went on waiting still another seven days, and once again he sent out the dove from the ark. 11 Later on the dove came to him about the time of evening and, look! there was an olive leaf freshly plucked in its bill, and so Noah got to know that the waters had abated from the earth.

600

12

19

 

2

302

 

600

12

24

Genesis 8:12

7

307

Dove sent out and does not return: And he went on waiting still another seven days. Then he sent out the dove, but it did not come back again to him anymore.

600

12

25

 

1

308

 

601

1

1

Genesis 8:13

7

314

Waters had drained: Now in the six hundred and first year, in the first month, on the first day of the month, it came about that the waters had drained from off the earth; and Noah proceeded to remove the covering of the ark and to look, and here the surface of the ground had drained dry.

601

1

30

  

343

 

601

2

1

  

344

 

601

2

26

  

369

 

601

2

27

Genesis 8:14-16

Earth dried off

370

Jehovah tells Noah to leave Ark: And in the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth had dried off.
15 God now spoke to Noah, saying: 16 “Go out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and your sons’ wives with you.

360 Day Calendar used in the Cataclysmic Deluge Account

As you can see from the above diagram (lines have been hidden for brevity), both Genesis 7:24 and Genesis 8:1-4 mention a period of 150 days finishing on the 17th day of the 7th Month. The starting of the rain was dated in Genesis 7:11 as occurring on the 17th day of the 2nd Month. The difference is exactly 5 months and gives 5 months of 30 days (5*30=150) rather than with a lunar calendar of today 2 or 3 months * 30 days and 2 or 3 months * 29 days which would only total 147 or 148 days.

Back in part 1 of this series, in the Introduction, we discussed “Uniformitarianism” under the heading Geology – Does it Matter? As a reminder, what is uniformitarianism?

“Uniformitarianism, also known as the Doctrine of Uniformity or the Uniformitarian Principle[1], is the assumption that the same natural laws and processes that operate in our present-day scientific observations have always operated in the universe in the past and apply everywhere in the universe.”[1](bold ours)

Most scientists would take this uniformitarian view with regard to the length of a solar year and a lunar month, and hence any calendar years used. They interpret any ancient texts that state lengths of a year that do not match today’s status quo, to be as the result of ignorance, or inaccuracy of measurements. They are not prepared to accept that the length of the year may have been different in antiquity. They also tend to base all their calculations of historical dating on the existing solar year and lunar month cycle. This includes attempting to obtain dates and years from astronomical sightings mentioned in cuneiform tablets, such as the date of eclipses (both solar and lunar) or conjunctions of planets like the recent December 30th, 2020, conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter.

However, how certain can they be that the year length has never been different from what it is today? Or, rather, is there any evidence of a different or varying solar year length in ancient records that cannot be ignored?

Evidence in favor of an ancient 360-day Solar year

If it has been the case that there was a 360-day solar year in ancient times we would expect to find traces in the Sumerian Civilization, followed by the Egyptian Civilization as the earliest civilizations spreading out from the Ararat mountains where the Ark came to rest. Other ancient civilizations such as India, the Mayan, Aztec, and Inca empires in the Americas, and China would also hopefully have traces of a different length of the solar year. What do we find?

Firstly, we need to remember that 360 has many divisors. It is a fact that many of the divisors of 360 are common use even today. 180, 120, 90, 72, 60, 45, 40, 36, 30, 24, 20, 18, 15, 12, 10, 9, 8, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2. We could therefore expect to find months of 30 days, and the use of 60, 24, 12, and 4, in particular. We also know that we have 24-hour days today, and 60 minutes in our hour, and 60 seconds in our minute. We have 12 months in our year and 4 seasons. Where did these standards come from, especially when lunar months today (the only way to measure a month) do not divide a solar year of 365.25 days into 12 months? We should also keep in mind that in Genesis 1:14 that the moon, and stars and sun, were given to “serve as signs and for seasons and for days and years”, “and God saw that it was good”. Would not an Earth with a 360-day year, divided into 12 times 30-day lunar months, divided into 4 seasons, with 24 hour days, 360 degrees longitude, and 180 degrees latitude, make calculations for signs, seasons, days, and years easy?

It is interesting to note the mathematical relationships of 360, 240, 120, 90, 24, 12, 8, 4, and Pi.

Sumerian Records:

In Sumerian records, we find clear evidence of an unusual base for their mathematics, base 60, as opposed to our common base 10 (decimal).

According to Robert K. Englund, Ph.D., UCLA prof. of Assyriology & Sumerology, in his article entitled Administrative Timekeeping in Ancient Mesopotamia, in the Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, 1988, pp. 121-122:

“The sexagesimal system of counting… is attested in periods much earlier than any secure attestation of the Sumerian language, namely in the periods Uruk IV-III [~3200 B.C.], and possibly in some token assemblages from clay envelopes unearthed in levels of proto-elamite Susa corresponding to Uruk V [~3400 B.C.]. … A mixture of this sexagesimal system with a heritage of natural cycles [the lunar and solar orbits] resulted in the 3rd millennium time divisions attested by administrative documents. … The resulting system… which without question complemented throughout the 3rd millennium natural, lunistellar divisions, is attested in its basic form of a twelve-month, 360-day year in the archaic documents from the end of the 4th millennium [B.C.].” [2] (Sexagesimal is base 60).

Babylonian Records:

The Babylonians continued the Sumerian use of base 60 and other divisors of 360.

Note what St Andrews University, Scotland, UK says about Babylonian Mathematics.:

“The Babylonians divided the day into 24 hours, each hour into 60 minutes, each minute into 60 seconds. This form of counting has survived for 4000 years.” [3]

In Sumeria, and in Babylon, base 60 was also used in money. 60 shekels = 1 mina and 60 minas = 1 talent. The Greeks later adopted this ratio of 60 minas to 1 talent. It was also found in ancient Israel.

Bible Records:

In Ancient Israel we find similar themes of these divisors of 360 appearing very commonly.

For example:

Measures of dry volume: 1 homer[4] = 2 letekh[5], 10 ephah[6], 30 seah[7], 100 omer[8] or issaron[9] and 180 qav[10].

Measures of liquid volume 1 kor[11] = 10 bath[12], 60 hin[13], and 720 log [14]. 1 kor = 1 homer.

In Ancient Israel around the time of the deportation to Babylon, in Ezekiel 45:12 we are told that “20 shekels, 25 shekels and 15 shekels [a total of 60 shekels] should prove to be the ma’neh [or mina] for you.”.

Other references to periods of time usually refer to 30 days or whole lunar months, never 29 days. We have such examples as the mourning for Aaron lasted 30 days (Numbers 20:29), as did the mourning for Moses (Deuteronomy 34:8). It is also interesting to note that Deuteronomy 21:13 discusses marrying a woman captive of war and allowing her a whole lunar month to weep or mourn for her family. This could suggest that even at this time a whole lunar month was 30 days.

Daniel 6:7,12 refers to the decree Darius the Mede was tricked into signing. The decree was that no one could make a petition to any God or man except the King, which was to last for a period of 30 days. Likewise, Esther was concerned as the King (Ahasuerus) had not called her in for 30 days (Esther 4:11). While earlier in the 3rd year of the reign of King Ahasuerus, he had a banquet for 180 days (Esther 1:4) which equates to 6 * 30-day months.

In prophecy also, 30-day months were used. Daniel 12:11-12 mentions periods of 1,290 days which equates to 43 months which equates to 3 years 7 months (of 12-month years) and 1,335 days which equates to 44.5 months of 30 days.

In the book of Revelation, the Apostle John mentions 1,260 days (Revelation 11:3, 12:6) which equates to 42 months of 30 days or 3 years 6 months, and in Revelation 12:14 is mentioned as 3.5 times (time, times, and half a time), a time equivalent to a year of 360 days.

Ancient Egypt:

The Ebers Papyrus is a fascinating document for many reasons, but the relevant one to this discussion is the calendar it contains. It dates from the reign of Amenophis I of the 18th Dynasty who reigned c.1087-1058 BCE[15] contemporary with Samson as Judge of Israel. While the whole subject of the Egyptian Calendar system is hotly disputed by many scholars, there are many who believe on the basis of this papyrus and others, and including ceiling paintings in tombs and temples of calendars, that at one time the Egyptian civil calendar was 360 days. Later, the civil calendar had up to 5 days, known as “epagomenal”, added to the calendar, sometime after the reign of Ramesses II c.943-877 BCE. [16]

The addition of the “five days” is not found in documents until the 7th century BCE. There is also mention in the Canopus Decree, of how the additional days came about. The Canopus Decree is a trilingual document dating to some 40 years before the Rosetta stone, dated to about 238 BCE, stated that “if the arrangement of the year remained of 360 days plus the five days later brought into usage (be it resolved) for a one-day feast of the Benefactor Gods to be added every four years to the five additional days before the new year,”” in order that all may know that the former defect in the arrangement of the seasons and the year and in the beliefs about the whole ordering of the heavens has come to be corrected and made good by the Benefactor Gods. …”[17] This indicated that the original calendar of 360 days had now to be adjusted because of changes that they did not fully understand but realized had taken place.

Ancient India:

It is very noteworthy that the texts of the Veda period know a year of only 360 days. Note these quotations:

  • All Veda texts speak uniformly and exclusively of a year of 360 days. Passages in which this length of the year is directly stated are found in all the Brahmanas.[18]
  • It is striking that the Vedas nowhere mention an intercalary period, and while repeatedly stating that the year consists of 360 days, nowhere refer to the five or six days that actually are a part of the solar year.”
  • This Hindu year of 360 days is divided into twelve months of thirty days each.”
  • “The texts describe the moon as crescent for fifteen days and waning for another fifteen days; they also say that the sun moved for six months or 180 days to the north and for the same number of days to the south.”[19]

The Aryabhatiya, an old Indian work on mathematics and astronomy tells us: “A year consists of twelve months. A month consists of 30 days. A day consists of 60 nadis. A nadi consists of 60 vinadikas.”[20]

Mayans:

The Mayan year consisted of 360 days to which 5 days was later added. They divided the months into 30 days, calling it a “moon” despite knowing that the synodical moon period was 29.5209 days which was more accurate than the Gregorian calendar which was introduced to Europe 90 years after the discovery of the Mayan culture. While they had a 365-day year consisting of 18 months of 20 days plus 5 nameless days, any historical reckoning was made by “tuns” which were 360 days and multiples of 20 tuns.[21] Again this would indicate an ancient way of reckoning in 360-day years, which was later overlaid with a practical 365-day year for practical reasons probably because of change over time in the length of the year. According to Nasa Science by 650BCE Mayan astronomers were able to make detailed observations of Venus, leading to a highly accurate calendar. They like other ancient cultures were neither ignorant nor inaccurate.[22]

Incas:

In the Inca culture “The Peruvian year was divided into twelve Quilla, or moons of thirty days. Five days were added at the end, called Allcacanquis. Thereafter, a day was added every four years to keep the calendar correct.” “[23]

Other Ancient Cultures and Civilisations

Please note for those interested in this subject there is also evidence that the ancient Romans around the time of the founding of Rome used a 360-day year calendar. In addition, we find the same evidence among the Assyrians, Persians, Ancient Greeks, Ancient Chinese, Ancient Armenians, and Aztecs to name a few, many with evidence of a time in antiquity when a change was required. [24]

Usage of 360 and its divisors since Biblical times

Usage of 360 and the numbers it is divisible by, is engrained in both ancient and modern ways of calculating time, but also weight, dry capacity, units of area, length, liquid capacity.

Today in commerce typical payment terms are usually 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, 180 days of credit rather than 1 month, etc.

Consider time: 24 hours in a day, 12 months in a year, 4 seasons, 60 minutes in 1 hour, 60 seconds in 1 minute. Time is also related to distance with the globe of the world divided into 24 time zones of 15 degrees latitude each, with the world map divided into a total of 360 degrees of latitude. 1 degree equals 60 minutes of arc, 1 minute of arc = 1 nautical mile.

In the United Kingdom:

Old Units of length in the UK include 1 lea, and 1 skein = 360 feet (each foot made of 12 inches), 1 wrap = 240 feet, 1 bolt (of cloth) = 120 feet, 1 shackle = 90 feet, 1 pace = 30 inches. 12 inches to 1 foot, 36 inches to 1 yard.

Scotland, Ireland, France, Italy, and Spain also likewise have units of length and units of area, and units of weight using the divisors 3,6,12,24,36,60,72,144 amongst others.

Old liquid measurements in the UK include 2 Pints = 1 Quart, 4 Quarts = 1 Gallon, 2 Gallons = 1 Peck, 2 Pecks = 1 Bucket, 2 Buckets = 1 Bushel and 3 Bushels = 1 Sack, 12 sacks = 1 Chaldron.

Also, a dozen (or 12) is common for the sale of eggs, and other items.

Conclusion: Time and again, diverse cultures from around the whole world are found to have had 360-day year calendars, later adapted to 365 days. It would therefore be a reasonable conclusion that for some considerable time during mankind’s history, the year was 12 months of 30 days totaling 360 days and at some point in history, had serious disturbance of the length of the solar year and lunar month, (perhaps in the 8th-7th centuries BCE), which settled down to what we have today.


References:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uniformitarianism

  2. Englund, R. K. “Administrative Timekeeping in Ancient Mesopotamia.” Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, vol. 31, no. 2, 1988, pp. 121–185. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/3632096 . Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

    https://brill.com/view/journals/jesh/31/2/article-p121_1.xmlThe author of this article freely admits that it should be noted that in the full text (not shown here for brevity) R K Englund speculates and downplays the conclusion many scholars examining the evidence come to, namely that the Sumerians used or were aware of a 360 day year with 12 new moons.

  3. https://mathshistory.st-andrews.ac.uk/HistTopics/Babylonian_mathematics/

  4. Leviticus 27:16; Ezekiel 45:11 for example.

  5. Hosea 3:2 for example.

  6. Exodus 16:36 for example.

  7. Genesis 18:6; 1 Samuel 25:18 for example.

  8. Exodus 16:16; Leviticus 23:10-14 for example.

  9. Exodus 29:40; Leviticus 14:21 for example.

  10. 2 Kings 6:25 for example.

  11. Ezekiel 45:14 for example.

  12. Ezekiel 45:11 for example.

  13. Exodus 29:40; Ezekiel 45:24 for example.

  14. Leviticus 14:10,12,15,21,24 for example.

  15. The dating provided is based on David Rohl’s revision of Egyptian chronology which synchronizes well with Biblical Chronology. David Rohl is an Archaeologist of Egyptian history and has written numerous books and has assisted in the making of the Patterns of Evidence film series. https://archive.org/stream/cu31924000900849/cu31924000900849_djvu.txt provides the record that the Ebers Papyrus comes from Amenophis I of the 18th dynasty although a different date is given due to accepting outdated Egyptian Chronology dating.
  16. The dating provided is based on David Rohl’s revision of Egyptian chronology which synchronizes well with Biblical Chronology.

  17. http://www.columbia.edu/itc/classics/bagnall/3995/readings/b-d2-9.htm see paragraph under 136. THE CANOPUS DECREE, OGIS 56, page number 238.

  18. Thibaut, “Astronomie, Astrologie und Mathematik,” Grundriss der indo-arischen Philologie und Alterthumskunde (1899), Volume III, Page 7 translated from German https://ia800304.us.archive.org/0/items/astronomieastrol00thibuoft/astronomieastrol00thibuoft.pdf

  19. For Original German of Thibaut, “Astronomie, Astrologie und Mathematik,” Grundriss der indo-arischen Philologie und Alterthumskunde (1899), Volume III, Page 7 https://ia800304.us.archive.org/0/items/astronomieastrol00thibuoft/astronomieastrol00thibuoft.pdf

  20. The Aryabhatiya of Aryabhatta, an ancient Indian work on mathematics and astronomy (transl. W. E. Clark, 1930), Chap. 3, “Kalakriya or the Reckoning of Time,” p. 51. https://archive.org/stream/AryabhattaIndianWorkOnMathematicsAstronomy/Aryabhatta-Indian-work-on-mathematics-astronomy_djvu.txt

  21. R. C. E. Long, “Chronology—Maya,” Encyclopaedia Britannica (14th ed.) https://www.britannica.com/topic/chronology/Pre-Columbian-American#ref523306

  22. https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/venus/exploration/?page=0&per_page=10&order=launch_date+desc%2Ctitle+asc&search=&tags=Venus&category=33#ancient-observers

  23. Markham, The Incas of Peru, p. 117 https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc2.ark:/13960/t2m61df9h&view=1up&seq=149&q1=117

  24. This information has been omitted from this article for brevity.

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[…] The Bible Book of Genesis – Geology, Archaeology, and Theology – Part 10 […]