Archives for posts with tag: Bible chronology


“The Tower of Babel; The Cultural History of Our Ancestors” by Bodie Hodge, published by Master Books.

I will admit my bias up front, I think I would recommend any book published by Master Books.

When browsing the contents of the book, I noticed that there was one appendix, and it was discussing the chronological placement of the book of Job. So, of course, I skipped to that part first! This provided a good deal of helpful information to shape the bibliography for my own research. Thank you Mr. Hodge!

Starting with the pronunciation of the word Babel, as an example, Mr. Hodge points out the powerful effect of distinct languages to place a barrier between people. Then he sketches the common attacks against the Bible regarding this historical account. Demonstrating that these battles are to be engaged as a biblical authority issue, he then addresses these attacks, showing why they are not valid.

Using Bible study to establish the foundation for history, this book proceeds to teach us, all of us, about our ancient ancestry. When you go back in history far enough, we all have the same family tree. Related topics that are included are languages, plate tectonics, legends about the tower and language split, decrease in life span, and more.

The tower of Babel is within the same era as the landing of the ark, so this time frame is the re-starting point of history. From that perspective, this book helps us to comprehend a biblical framework to view and understand all ancient history. Since history is key to understanding our world, I recommend this book as an aid to infuse the Light of Truth into all of your thinking, providing discernment to your studies.

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The concept of having “back story” is that little to none of this would be included in the book or screen play. There would just be hints, implications, or assumptions that touch on these topics, giving depth to the cultural setting of the story. Here is some of the back story regarding the impact of the Babel dispersion.

It took about a hundred years, but the technology was finally re-established, and in full production to again make the pre-flood product, beetle lights. These lights mimic the light production of the illuminated insects that use chemicals to produce a cold light in a pale yellow colour, with a touch of green.

The light from this device is intense enough that it is ample for reading, more so than a candle. The appliance itself is a medium-sized box, with a triangle-shaped knob on the side to turn on the light with a clockwise turn, then off again with another clockwise turn. The light comes out the entire bottom and the lower half of one side of the box.

The top of the box has a lid that opens to add fruit scraps. The first stage of the chemicals in the appliance convert the fruit into the chemicals needed for the second stage, that produces the light. The apparatus lasts for several years of daily use, then the chemicals run out and it needs to be reloaded at the production facility.

There were seven production facilities in Shinar. Soon after that, the confusion of languages caused a lot of fighting, during which three of the machines were damaged beyond repair. This did not take much damage, since the knowledge to repair them no longer existed. Between the death of one key technologist, and the creation of new languages, the combined knowledge needed to build, or repair, the machines no longer resided within any one language-tribe. Operating the machines was still possible, as were minor repairs and maintenance.

Of the remaining four machines, three were moved to other regions, and two did not survive the move. The one remaining machine in Shinar failed beyond repair, after about 7 decades, leaving the one in Ur as the only remaining beetle light production facility in the world, at the time of the story.

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The Bible doesn’t say precisely when Job’s trial of faith happened, or even how old he was at the time. There are some hints that might help us narrow down the time frame. Within the Biblical possibilities, we have then chosen dates that make for a good story.

There are several factors that undoubtedly place the events after the flood. To narrow it down further, we can look at clues about Job’s age, plus some tribal and geographic references. Considering that Job had ten children, and all seven of his sons had homes of their own, it seems that he must have been at least 60 at the time of his trial of faith.

“After this Job lived 140 years …” The way this phrase is used in other parts of the Bible, it always means that these were additional years after the event, so it was not his total life span. Also, Job was doubly blessed in several other ways after his trial, so maybe he had lived 70 years, before the time of the trial, then lived twice as many years after, to a total of 210.

Those living before the flood generally lived over 800 years, after the flood over 400 years, after the dispersion from Babel over 200 years, then life spans tapered down from there to the time when Moses said men generally lived about 70 or 80 years. The Bible seems to give the impression that grandchildren were only a part of Job’s family after the trial. So, it doesn’t really fit if Job was among those who lived over 400, since you would think he would have had grandchildren long before the final 140 years of his life. So, “being old and full of days” at 210 would put Job in the post dispersion generation.

Also, he was the “greatest of the men of the East” and he lived in “the land of Uz,” plus he was attacked by the Sabeans and the Chaldeans. These regional and tribal references all assume geographically dispersed and tribally segregated groups of people. This also places the events after the dispersion. But, the time frame is not likely many centuries after the dispersion, since “the East” would have been much farther, as significant civilizations developed in Asia. The land of Uz has its western border at the Jordan River. Also, God mentions the Jordan River when He is speaking of behemoth. So, it doesn’t seem possible that enough time had passed, so that “the East” would refer to, say, India.

For the story, it seems fitting that God might single out Job as having no equal in the Earth, as a servant of God, shortly after the death of Noah.

ChronologyOfTheOldTestamentWhile on the topic of Bible chronology, I must mention “The Chronology of the Old Testament” by Floyd Nolen Jones, published by Master Books. This book receives my highest commendation.

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