Skip to comments.James Ussher and His Chronology: Reasonable or Ridiculous?
Posted on 04/24/2014 8:00:18 AM PDT by fishtank
James Ussher and His Chronology: Reasonable or Ridiculous?
by Jerry Bergman, Ph.D. *
Archbishop James Ussher (15811656) was one of the most important biblical scholars of the 17th century. His research and scholarly work have even earned high praise from some who are opposed to his conclusions. Called the greatest luminary of the church of Ireland and one of the greatest scholars of his day in the Christian Church, his work has influenced generations of Christian thinkers with a force still felt today.1
An expert on the writings of the early church fathers, Ussher majorly impacted Reformation theology. The 18-volume set titled The Whole Works of James Ussher contains his most important writings.2 Today, he is best known for his chronology research that concluded Adam was created in 4004 B.C. Consequently, anti-creationists heavily criticize him, often picturing him as naive, ignorant, anti-science, and someone whose research was superficial and based solely on the biblical record.3
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(Excerpt) Read more at icr.org ...
Usher had one of the greatest sources of documents to write his book. Unfortunately many of the resources were destroyed. Like the destruction of the Library of Constantinople so much knowledge was lost.
An excellent aritcle about a devout man of God. The problem I see people having is that the Bible is not a book of chronology other that to provide lineage and geneology, this for the priesthood and succession of the Messiah who is from the line of Judah and David. The lineage was never meant to provide an accurate account of time for anything more than something-happened-and-then-something-else-happened-after.
As a Christian, I believe in the infallibility of the Word of God and that within its pages lie the forumulae for salvation through Christ. That Methuselah lived for 969 years has nothing to do with salvation. God could have created the world in an instant but He revealed to Moses that He did so in 6 days. Good enough for me.
I believe it was Issac Newton who said he could find nothing in error in Ussher’s work.
Ussher was no prophet. You should flee from his deception.
>> “The problem I see people having is that the Bible is not a book of chronology other that to provide lineage and geneology...” <<
I couldn’t possibly disagree with your statement more.
All of the genealogical information is carefully crafted to give us precise lengths of lives, and times of birth of sons, that couldn’t have any other purpose but to affirm Yehova’s seven day pattern for the millennia he planned for the Earth. This is affirmed by Peter’s well known 1000 years per day prophecy.
Some simply choose to be blind.
Fortunately Ussher Chose to believe Yehova’s inerrant word.
We flee from DManA’s ignorant deception, and embrace the work of devout men of God like Ussher.
It is clear from the evidence of His creation that this world is very old. Ussher asks us to believe that either God lied to us through His creation or He lied to us in his Word.
Yea, but what did Newton know about numbers? :o)
It is clear from all of the evidence that this universe is very young, as is the Earth.
A lack of understanding leads the ignorant “science” groupies, that want to be a part of man’s colossal journey of fools, to dispute the obvious.
Jesus had no problem with the biblical record. Should I flee from Christ?
Jesus wasn’t revealing the age of the Earth. He was revealing spiritual Truth, using metaphors people could understand.
Ussher's thesis was nothing more than a compilation of dates given their Hebrew reckoning in conjunction with other calendars of antiquity. His supposition was a 365 day year. The Jews has no such timing. A year was loosely based upon phases of the moon.
All of the genealogical information is carefully crafted to give us precise lengths of lives, and times of birth of sons, that couldnt have any other purpose but to affirm Yehovas seven day pattern for the millennia he planned for the Earth. This is affirmed by Peters well known 1000 years per day prophecy.
Incorrect. The geneology was there to show lineage, nothing more. The geneology in Matthew is incomplete, skipping generations.
First of all, it's important to understand that ancient Jewish genealogies differed in the form they took. There were both ascending and descending genealogies; also, while some were segmented, others were linear.
Genealogies also varied in depththat is, they varied in the number of generations included. Most of the time, they were not meant to be comprehensive. It was a common practice to skip generations, depending on the genealogys purpose (e.g., to establish inheritance rights, citizenship, or even the legal right of a king to rule).
In ascending genealogies, the Hebrew word ben can mean either son, or a more distant descendant (in Genesis 29:5, it denotes Laban, who was actually Nahor's grandson).
Likewise, in descending genealogies, the Hebrew word av can mean either father or a more distant ancestor. For example, when Matthew says that Joram was the father of Uzziah (see Matthew 1:9)also known as Azariah hes actually skipping three generations (compare to 1 Chronicles 3:10-12).
We also know (by comparing other OT accounts) that the four generations from Perez to Amminadab spanned roughly 450 yearsso there are obviously gaps at that point in the genealogy (because we would ordinarily expect four generations to encompass less than 200 years). The only people who have a problem with any of this are modern readers who are unfamiliar with the nature, character, and purpose of genealogies in ancient Israel.
The point is, chronology is divorced from salvation.
“That Methuselah lived for 969 years has nothing to do with salvation.”
For me, it does. It illustrates the corrosive effect of sin on the intended eternal lifespan if mankind.
When you look at the Bible in that way, you turn it into a piece of “burning bosom literature”.
Then you take it as a personal narritive. That does not change the fact that salvation is predicated upon confession of the Lord Jesus Christ and belief that God has raised him from the dead. (Rom 10:9)
Noah patriarchs lifespan.
As a professional engineer, this graph speaks VOLUMES of information to me.
As in, the Bible has REAL data, recorded by REAL men, about the REAL consequences of sin, paid for by a REAL Redeemer, who in REALITY rose from the dead.
If you throw out Genesis, the atheists won’t let you keep the Gospels.
>> “Ussher’s thesis was nothing more than a compilation of dates given their Hebrew reckoning in conjunction with other calendars of antiquity. His supposition was a 365 day year. The Jews has no such timing. A year was loosely based upon phases of the moon.” <<
There is so much wrong in that blast that I don’t know where to start.
Ussher’s analysis of the genealogical facts of the Bible was complex, and involved factoring in prophetic statements on individuals who were to be omitted from genealogies.
The length of the year actually evens out over long periods, and there is absolutely nothing “loose” about the Biblical calendar, which is quite precisely set by new moons, and is adjusted based on the ripeness of the barley crop each and every year, so that the Adar Bet is implemented at the correct time to keep the Biblical year in sync with the actual seasons.
This jogging of the new year is important to many prophecies, and is useful to identify precise periods in Bible history to mathematically prove them at our present time.
>> “That does not change the fact that salvation is predicated upon confession of the Lord Jesus Christ and belief that God has raised him from the dead.” <<
Your understanding of the basis of salvation is rather truncated, and would benefit from a careful reading of Peter’s first epistle, which expresses the conditions upon which our FUTURE salvation will depend.
What if he throws out the whole Bible as too “loose” to be believable?
As a “professional engineer” you should recognize the error in this graph and how it is deceptive.
Who is throwing out Genesis? I believe it entirely and have debated many cultists on the truths therein.
My link on post 6 does a very good analysis of Ussher. The man was amazingly brilliant to throw his works out lightly. You see the world as very old but Jesus obviously believed the flood was a real event that took place and the collective memory of mankind retains aspects of it around the globe. That cataclysmic event made the earth look old.
Num 23:19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
He didn’t lie. He couldn’t, it’s not in His nature.
Since there is no evidence of a world wide inundation within human memory then you must be misinterpreting what He said.
“you must be misinterpreting what He said.”
Mat_24:38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,
Mat_24:39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them
Luk_17:26 And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
Luk_17:27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
Heb_11:7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.
1Pe_3:20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.
2Pe_2:5 And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
I see that today we are using the logical fallacy of an appeal to authority/tradition. Isn’t that kind of like the fallacy of “settled science” that the global warming folks. Just because Newton (or Darwin for that matter) says something doesn’t mean it can’t or shouldn’t be challenged.
If you think Peter wrote heresy you are in big trouble for sure!
Never said he did. Peter never once indicated that you had to wait for a future salvation. He knew it came at the moment of rebirth/conversion.
The world is completely covered with the evidence of the flood. It is the dominant characteristic of our geography.
 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,
 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.
 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,
 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
 Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
 Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:
 Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
If you cannot see the future tense of all that he presents, then try this from the mouth of Yeshua himself:
 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.  But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
Nowhere in the word is salvation promised before we meet him at the end.
Said the great deceiver himself.
Lecture featuring Dr. John Baumgardner, author of the finite element computational solid mechanics 'Terra' code.
Trust me, I have read what Peter wrote. I have taught on what Peter wrote. Peter is not talking about gaining salvation at a later date. The realization of salvation comes when we meet Christ, either in death or at the Glorious Appearing. Peter’s epistle is encouraging those being persecuted to endure their suffering. Why is that so hard for you to understand?
The “great deceiver” - wow - that’s quite a step up for me. So I guess you don’t see the fundamental flaw in this graph, either.
LOL. It’s a shame he wasted that education.
Then you live on another planet.
No peter taught that we gain salvation by following his commandments through faith to the end.
Yeshua stated that “the faith of many shall wax cold.”
We meet Yeshua, through death or living to the last trump, either way, at the end. Paul taught the same.
Paul and James were also clear that only those that are doers, not just readers, will be justified.
The graph is a reasonable regression.
From you, I dearly hope!
But it has nothing to do with the age of the Earth.
Your tenses are utterly confused. Most of what Peter here has written is in the present tense, which is that for those who have the gift of salvation, it is an action in process from the moment it was initiated by God. Your premise is wholly grammatically incorrect and therefore invalid.
You'd better think this through. God's plan is to effect a general salvation prepared before Adam sinned. Since that time, every descendant of Adam exercising committed trust in The Faith of Jehovah Jesus has a portion of that plan which exists, is not now seen, but which will be unveiled at the consummation of the plan.
Each person receiving that gift is the one whom The God, through foreknowledge, discerns the moment of irreversible commitment of oneself into the care of the Saving One.
This person is thus instantaneously freed from guilt and death by The God's declaration, on the basis of Christ's righteousness imputed to him, and receives eternal life.
Justification is inatantaneous, but unearned salvation and rewarded sanctification are processes.
You might want to get out your NT Greek grammar book.
No, first you obtain it as a gift of The God (Eph. 2:8-9), then you work it out as an occupation (Eph. 2:10, Phil. 2:12), as a son and servant.