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English Bible Dictionary

Chronology

 

By this term we understand the technical and historical chronology of the Jews and their ancestors from the earliest time to the close of the New Testament Canon.

  • TECHNICAL CHRONOLOGY: The technical part of Hebrew chronology presents great difficulties.

  • HISTORICAL CHRONOLOGY: The historical part of Hebrew chronology is not less difficult than the technical. The information in the Bible is indeed direct rather than inferential although there is very important evidence of the latter kind, but the present state of the numbers make absolute certainty in many cases impossible. Three principal systems of biblical chronology have been founded, which may be termed (the Long System, the short, and the Rabbinical. There is a fourth, which although an off shoot in part of the last, can scarcely be termed biblical, in as much as it depends for the most part upon theories, not only independent of but repugnant to the Bible: this last is at present peculiar to Baron Bunsen, and you can find more about that here on st-takla.org on other commentaries and dictionary entries. The principal advocates of the Long chronology are Jackson. Hales and Des-Vignoles. of the Short chronology Ussher may be considered as the most able advocate The Rabbinical chronology accept the biblical numbers, but makes the most arbitrary corrections. For the date of the Exodus it has been virtually accepted by Bunsen, Lepsius and Lord A. Hervey. The numbers given by the LXX. for the antediluvian patriarchs would place the creation of Adam 2262 years before the end of the flood or B.C. cir. 5361 or 5421.

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