I mustn’t be the first to discuss this – indeed it isn’t even my own idea – but an alternative explanation for the age of Biblical characters makes far more sense and places a hint of reality to what is quite obviously laden with myth.

I’m embarrassed to admit it, but I cannot for the life of me remember whom it was that suggested the following to me. It was some time ago and I didn’t think much of it then and wouldn’t have thought much of it even recently had I not taken some time to watch some of the rants of young Earth creationists on YouTube.

However, someone once suggested to me that it is likely that that genealogy described in Genesis is more likely based upon Lunar cycles than solar years and doing the mathematics proves interesting.

There are 12.37 full moons in a year. Taking the Biblical ages of the longest living characters we get the following.

Name Biblical Lifespan (“years”) Divided by Lunar cycle
Methuselah 956 77.3
Adam 930 75.2
Seth 912 73.7
Cainan 910 73.6
Enos 905 73.2
Mahalalel 895 72.4

Which all seem far more likely than the literalists would have one believe in taking the word of the bible as an absolute. I have no doubt that many of the characters actually did live and I wouldn’t be surprised if they lived for as long as the Lunar cycles suggested. What I doubt (for very good reason) the divine inclination and story of Genesis itself – that is to say, the root of the Abrahamic faiths which simply cannot be matched with observation.