[b-hebrew] Assumptions about ANE ages that just don't work

JimStinehart at aol.com JimStinehart at aol.com
Sun Oct 21 09:17:01 EDT 2007

Yaakov (J) Stein: 
You need to do the math right, and then you will see that  all the numbers 
make perfect sense.   
You wrote:  “Terah could die at the old age of 205/2 = 102,
and Abraham at 75/2 =  35 took off from Haran.” 
But if you do the math right, everything becomes  clear. 
75/2 = 37½  
Now we’re ready to see the peculiar number 17½ writ large  in the Patriarchal 
narratives, and thereby figure out the historical time period  of the 
Patriarchal Age. 
    1.  We know that each of Isaac and Esau marries at age 20  regular years 
(stated age 40 “years”, in 6-month “years”).  By analogy, Abraham probably 
married  at age 20.  That means that when  Abraham and Sarah take off from 
Harran, Sarah has been barren for 17½ regular  years.
    1.  Abraham dies at state age 175 “years”.  That’s age 17½, tenfold.  
Are you starting to catch it?  The one and only fraction in the  Patriarchal 
narratives is 1/10, as the Hebrew word for tithe means 1/10.  Abraham tithes a 
tenth to Melchizedek,  and in the Jacob’s Ladder scene, Jacob promises to tithe 
a  tenth.
    1.  Abraham’s actual age at death is 87½ regular  years.  His father 
sired him at  age 70 “years”, Jacob leads 70 Hebrews into Egypt, and the 
Egyptians mourn  Jacob’s death for 70 days.  So 87½  suggests 87½ - 70 = 17½..
    1.  You are right that Terakh dies at age 102½.  Now do the math.  Isaac 
is born when Abraham is age 50  regular years.  17½ years later,  Terakh dies. 
 Terakh was age 35  when he sired Abraham.  Terakh  dies 67½ regular years 
later, at age 102½.  Abraham is age 67½ at Terakh’s death,  meaning that Terakh 
died 17½ regular years after the Covenant was fulfilled  with Isaac’s birth.  
(By the way,  Terakh’s death is what causes Abraham to find out about the 
existence of  Rebekah.  2½ regular years later,  when Abraham is age 70 regular 
years, Isaac and Rebekah  wed.)
    1.  If you get serious about counting years, you can figure  out that 
Judah is born 117½ years after Abraham’s birth.  (Abraham had already died 30 
years  earlier, at age 87½.)
    1.  Joseph is born 2½ regular years after Judah, in Year  120.  (120 
regular years after  Abraham’s birth.)  Joseph dies at  stated age 110 “years”, 
which is age 55 regular years.  So the Patriarchal narratives end with  Joseph’
s death, 55 years after Year 120, which is Year 175.  I’m sure you see by now: 
 Year 175 is 17½, tenfold.  Everything is based on the peculiar  number 17½.
    1.  No other composition in mankind’s 5,000-year history  has focused on 
the peculiar number 17½.   Only the Patriarchal narratives.   The author is 
trying to tell us something.  The author is telling us the exact  historical 
time period of the Patriarchal narratives.  We need to look for a famous king who 
 died more than ½-way through his 17th regnal year.  That could be 
represented in the  ancient world (which did not have a zero) by the number 17½.   That’
s the king whose reign  coincides with the historical Patriarchal Age, in my 
controversial  view.
The text as is is perfect.  We just need to understand what the text  is 
telling us. 
Jim Stinehart 
Evanston,  Illinois

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