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The Patriarchs of the Bible are usually defined as being Abraham, his son Isaac, and Isaac’s son Jacob, also named Israel, the ancestor of the Israelites
Biblical Patriarchs play a significant role in religion because it is they who are used as a significant marker by God in revelation and promises.
The term Patriarchs is also used when making reference to the twenty male ancestors that lived between Adam—the first human being on Earth—and Abraham, the founding father of the Covenant.
Ten of these Patriarchs are called Antediluvian Patriarchs because they lived on Earth before the Great Flood swept across the land.
In this article, we take a look at the ten of the Antediluvian Patriarchs and analyses with great interest their peculiar lifespan.
We can resume then that the antediluvian patriarchs correspond to the main characters of the book Genesis, which correspond to Adam, the first man, and his descendants to Noah, one of only eight survivors of the universal Flood.
Super Longevous times…
According to the ancient texts, Noah was the tenth and last of the super-longevous antediluvian patriarchs: Noah died 350 years after the Flood, at the age of 950 years.
This makes him the third longest man in the entire Bible, surpassing even Adam who lived until the age of 930 years.
In proportion to his long life, he fathered three children after the age of 500.
After Noah, lifespan drastically plunged to “only” 120 years, as we see with Moses.
The lifetimes given for the patriarchs in the Book of Genesis are Adam 930 years, Seth 912, Enos 905, Kenan 910, Mahalalel 895, Jared 962, Enoch 365 (did not die but was taken away by God), Methuselah 969, Lamech 777, Noah 950.
In the following graph, we can see the lifespan of the patriarchs as recorded in the Septuagint Black, the Syriac Peshitta Gold, and the Masoretic text Crimson.
What we have is a list of extremely important Biblical characters whose lifespan is unlike anything we’ve encountered before.
This historical fact raises a number of questions which we have not been able to answer.
Were their lives recorded adequately? Did they really live that long? Is it possible that their extreme age is the result of misinterpretations or translation errors?
Is it just part of a myth? Or, is it possible that some of these Patriarchs were not ordinary humans, but in fact messengers from the Gods, aka beings from another world?
Some theories point towards the possibility that their extreme lifespans are the result of translation errors.
Some scholars maintain that the lunar cycles were confused with solar cycles, and the real ages are in fact 13.5 times smaller.
This would mean that Methuselah who is said to have lived to the age of 969 was in fact 71.7 years old when he died. (969/13.5=71,77)
But, just as with the Biblical Patriarchs, the Sumerian King list, as well as the Turin Royal Canon, describe how in the distant past, the lifespan on Earth was anomalously great.
The Turin Royal canon describes, in the final two lines of the column a sort of resume of the entire document where we can read: ‘… Venerables Shemsu-Hor, 13,420 years; Reigns before the Shemsu-Hor, 23,200 years; Total 36,620 years’.
The Sumerian King list, just as the Turin Royal canon describe incredible longevous reigns:
“After the kingship descended from heaven, the kingship was in Eridug. In Eridug, Alulim became king; he ruled for 28800 years. Alaljar ruled for 36000 years. 2 kings; they ruled for 64800 years.”
This is why I ask, is it possible that both the Biblical Patriarchs, the Turin Royal Canon, as well as the Sumerian King List are the result of misinterpretations or translation errors? Or is it possible that all three examples are evidence of beings that inhabited earth thousands of years ago, who somehow lived as if they were true ‘Gods’ with lifespans incomparable to ordinary humans?
Reference: Timeline of the Patriarchs
Featured Image Credit: Leon Tukker, posted with permission.