Creation to
the Calling of Abraham


The Bible provides the following information in relation to the Creation to
calling of Abraham period.

FROM GENESIS 5:3-31,7:6,11,9:28-29

                     * Fathered *   * Thereafter *    * Total *

        Adam              130            800             930
        Seth              105            807             912
        Enosh              90            815             905
        Cainan             70            840             910
        Mahalaleel         65            830             895
        Jared             162            800             962
        Enoch              65            300             365
        Methuselah        187            782             969
        Lamech            182            595             777
        Noah to Flood     600            350             950


                     * Fathered *   * Thereafter *

        Shem                2
        Arphaxad           35            403
        Salah              30            403
        Eber               34            430
        Peleg              30            209 
        Reu                32            207
        Serug              30            200
        Nahor              29            119
        Terah              70

These figures need to be adjusted for the following.

A)  Many people when assembling the chronology of the Creation to Abraham
    period do not take into account the effect of accumulated months.

    The way years are counted in English, a person's age is determined
    on the basis of how many full years they have lived. However, in
    the bible a person's age is determined according to the year of the
    life they happen to be living! An example of this can be seen in the
    verses mentioning the age of Noah.

         Gen   7:6    Noah was six hundred years old when the flood
                      of waters was on the earth.  
               7:11   In the six hundredth year of Noah's life in
                      the second month, the seventeenth day of the
                      month, on that day all the foundations of
                      the great deep were broken up, and the
                      windows of heaven were opened. 

    So if chronologists ignore this issue their chronologies will tend to
    overstate the actual number of years which have elapsed.

B)  The English terms 'begot' or 'father of' found in Genesis should be
    rendered 'fathered'. It refers to when the child is born!

C)  If a man fathers a son (or if a man dies) in a certain year of
    his life, does that precisely define what calendar year the event

    In the case of anyone born (or in the case of Adam 'created') on
    the 1st day of the 1st month it does. 

    However, for other birth dates it does not!

    For example, a man born mid year and having a son after having
    lived 29 complete years and 3 months; will become a father in
    the 30th calendar year of his life. However, the same man having
    a son after having lived 29 complete years and 9 months; will   
    become a father in the 31st calendar year of his life.

    It all depends on whether he becomes a father before the end of
    that calendar year or after the start of the next calendar year.
    So, with the information provided in Genesis, it is not always
    easy to quickly determine the exact calendar years in which
    these men became fathers or in which calendar year they died.

D)  What we see in the information presented for the Adam to Flood period
    is that the age when they became a father plus the subsequent number
    of years always equals their age at death.

    If the additional years represented added calendar years one would
    not normally expect this to always be the case. With fathering
    falling in one of two possible years and the time of dying falling
    in one of two possible years; then the arithmetic should agree only

    Another view is that the additional years of life may not have been
    calendar years, but rather year values that were derived by simply
    deducting the year of life at their death from the year of life when
    they became a father. So ensuring the arithmetic would always agree.

E)  A period of time which needs special attention is the Methuselah
    to Flood period.

    Methuselah dies in his 969th year.

    [ He may have died in the calendar before the Flood or early in
      the year of the Flood. (In any case being the grandfather of
      Noah and being advanced in years it seems likely that he died
      of natural causes prior to the start of the Deluge.)

    Minimum counting for this period arrives at,

    Methuselah fathers in his             187th year
    Lamech     fathers in his   (182-1)   181st year
    Noah to Flood an additional (600-1)   599th year
                                          967th year

    (NB: Need to adjust for year of father and year
         of son being double counted.)

    A value 2 years lower than the 969th year of Methuselah. This
    indicates the use of 'minimum counting' is not to be applied
    to Lamech and Noah. As it is necessary to lift the value of
    967th year up to at least the 969th year.
F)  The Flood lasted a period of almost one year.

    For a fuller discussion, refer FLOOD CHRONOLOGY

    (The Deluge itself spanned 10 months from the 17th day
     of the second month up until the 17th day of the 12th month.)

G)  Genesis 11:10 indicates Shem fathered Arphaxad 2 years after the

    However, Genesis 5:32 states Shem was born when Noah was 500 years
    of age and Genesis 11:10 states Shem was only 100 years of age when
    Arphaxad was born.
    The indication is that Arphaxad had to be born immediately after
    the Flood, in the second year. That is to say in the year immediately
    following the Flood.

    [NB: 1) The word translated 'two' in Gen 11:10 is Strong's reference
            8147 which can also be rendered 'second' as in 1Kings 15:25,
            2Kings 1:17, 14:1, 15:32, Daniel 2:1, Haggai 1:1 and
            Zechariah 1:1. ]

    The bible counts inclusively. The first period after the Flood
    occurred in the same year as the Flood. It seems that technically
    the Deluge was shown to have ended when the dove brought the
    freshly picked olive leaf to Noah. This was about two weeks prior
    to the end of that calendar year.
    The following year was the second year.

H)  When was the birth date of Noah? And in what year may he have died?

    Genesis 7:11 states Noah was living his 600th year when the Deluge
    began on the 17th day of the second month.

    Genesis 7:6 states Noah was six hundred years old when the flood
    of waters was upon the earth. In other words during the entire
    period of the Deluge Noah was living in his 600th year.

    The waters of the Deluge increased over 150 days (Gen 17:24) and
    receded over another 150 days (Gen 8:3). This meant that starting
    with the 17th day of the 12th month all that was necessary was for
    the ground to dry.

    Genesis 8:13 states that the 1st day of the 1st month of the next
    year was Noah's 601st year. However, the Hebrew text does not say
    he was a 'son of' 601 years or that he had 'lived' 601 years.
    Rather it states;

         Gen  8:13  And becoming on first and six hundreds year
                    on the first on first to the month dried up
                    the waters from the earth ...

    This day represented the 601st calendar year of Noah's life!
    At this time he was in English terms still 599 years old and in bible
    terms still 600 years old. He had not yet started his 601st year of
    life (as determined by the arrival of his next birthday). 
    So the implication is that the birth date of Noah occurred after
    1st day of the first month, but before 17th day of the 2nd month.

So in summary, after taking all the above points into consideration and
converting the numbers to the English form of counting, we can arrive at
the following 'minimum' compilation;

                                   * Adjusted *

           Adam            (130-1)      129
           Seth            (105-1)      104
           Enosh           ( 90-1)       89
           Cainan          ( 70-1)       69
           Mahalaleel      ( 65-1)       64
           Jared           (162-1)      161
           Enoch           ( 65-1)       64
           Methuselah      (969-1)      968        1,648
           Flood                          1            1

           Shem            (  2-2)        -
           Arphaxad        ( 35-1)       34
           Salah           ( 30-1)       29
           Eber            ( 34-1)       33
           Peleg           ( 30-1)       29 
           Reu             ( 32-1)       31
           Serug           ( 30-1)       29
           Nahor           ( 29-1)       28
           Terah           ( 70-1)       69          282
                                                   1,931  full years

The details of the Adam to Arphaxad period can be quite confusing.
So hopefully the following will help to clarify.

Calendar   Person  Yr of Life  Yr of Life  Calendar   Calculation
  Year              Son Born     When?       Year

1st        Adam       130th      early       130th

130th      Seth       105th      early       234th    (130+105 -1yr)

234th      Enosh       90th      early       323rd    (234+90  -1yr)

323rd      Cainan      70th      early       392nd    (323+70  -1yr)
392nd      Mahalaleel  65th      early       456th    (392+65  -1yr)

456th      Jared      162nd      early       617th    (456+162 -1yr)

617th      Enoch       65th      early       681st    (617+65  -1yr)

681st      Methuselah 187nd      late        868th    (681+187 -1yr+1yr)

868th      Lamech     182nd      late       1050th    (868+182 -1yr+1yr)

1050th     Noah       500th      late       1550th    (1050+500-1yr+1yr)

1550th     Shem       100th      late       1650th    (1550+100-1yr+1yr)

1650th     Arphaxad   

From this compilation the following can be noticed;

   1)  Methuselah was born in the 681st year and as we know he died
       after living a further 968 complete years (dying in his 969th
       year). Since he did not outlive the Flood we know he died in
       the 1649th year. The year of the Flood! (Presumably prior to
       the actual event.)

   2)  Noah was born in the 1050th year and after living 599 complete
       years lives safely through the Deluge occurring in his 600th

   3)  Arphaxad was born in the 1650th year. The year immediately
       following the year of the Flood.

   4)  Noah living 950 years after having been born in the 1050th
       year will live into the 2,000th year if he lives late into
       his 950th year of life (ie into his 951st calendar year).

So, having resolved the Adam to Terah period, it is now necessary
to consider the timing of the calling of Abraham. 

At what age was Abraham when he was called by God to enter the
Promised Land of Canaan?

Genesis 12:4 indicates Abraham was 75 years old when he departed from
Haran and entered Canaan. However, a more literal rendering of this
verse reads as follows;

     Gen   12:4    And Abram a son of five years and seventy years
                   when he departed from Haran. ....   

In Genesis 12:4 it is not necessarily wrong to translate the Hebrew
as 75 years, but the verse can also be understood to be saying Abraham
was at this time a son (ie builder) of both 5 years and 70 years!

[NB: God sometimes uses the Hebrew term 'son' to  refer to the number of
     years since He has called a person. Refer 1Sam 13:1 in the NKJV.
     This situation is also encountered in relation to the age of Joseph
     when he appeared before Pharaoh (Gen 41:46).] 

What is possibly being suggested is;

      1) This was the 70th year since Abraham's birth, and

      2) The 5th year since God had called him to leave Mesopotamia.

Please refer to; 

      [NB: It is not unusual in Genesis for the lower number of years
           to be  stated before the greater value, but it is unusual
           for this order to be encountered in conjunction with the
           term 'son of'. ]

Understanding that Abraham left Haran when he was 70 years old, ie
he was living his 70th year, would mean that in English terms he was
69 years old.

                                              * Adjusted *

       Creation to birth of Abraham                1,931

       Age of Abraham when he enters Canaan           69
                                                   2,000  full years


Therefore, the minimum number of years which could have past prior to
the calling of Abraham to leave Haran and to enter the land of Canaan
was 2,000 years!

Placing this calling of Abraham in the 2001st year. 

to Exodus


The Death
The Age of
Jacob when
Joseph was
The 400 years
& 430 years
Overview of

C h r o n o l o g y   O u t l i n e


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