PDA

View Full Version : Solomon's Sea value of pi correct!

rwald
2nd February 2003, 05:57 PM
I know that many of you probably consider the following Bible quote as evidence that God did not directly write the Bible:

And he made a molten sea, ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about, and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.The line of reasoning goes, "If the diameter was 10, the circumference should have been 31.4, or at least 31. So the Bible's wrong!" However, this argument is easily refuted. If the sea's real diameter was 9.65, the circumference would have been 30.32. These values round to 10 and 30, and so the Bible is right again!

(By the way, I don't think the Bible is infallible, unless bats became mammals in recent times. I just wanted to point out that, mathematically, this particular scene is not necessarily inaccurate.)

BillyJoe
3rd February 2003, 02:53 AM
If you "made a molten sea" would you make one with a diameter of 10 cubits or a diameter of 9.65 cubits. No. If he had said that he "came upon a molten sea", then the 10 cubits would very likely be an approximation. No. He "made a molten sea" with a diameter of 10 cubits. He then multiplied the 10 cubits by the then accepted but incorrect factor of 3 to get 30 cubits for the circumference. Wrong.

Tez
3rd February 2003, 09:27 AM
well, perhaps the sea is held in a vessel of finite thickness, and the 30 qubits is the inner circumference, while the 10 qubits was measured to the outer edge...

CurtC
3rd February 2003, 09:39 AM
What, this molten sea is a quantum computer?

Skeptical Greg
3rd February 2003, 03:06 PM
Originally posted by rwald
I know that many of you probably consider the following Bible quote as evidence that God did not directly write the Bible:

quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
And he made a molten sea, ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about, and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The line of reasoning goes, "If the diameter was 10, the circumference should have been 31.4, or at least 31. So the Bible's wrong!" However, this argument is easily refuted. If the sea's real diameter was 9.65, the circumference would have been 30.32. These values round to 10 and 30, and so the Bible is right again!

(By the way, I don't think the Bible is infallible, unless bats became mammals in recent times. I just wanted to point out that, mathematically, this particular scene is not necessarily inaccurate.)

To suggest that the figures are somehow wrong, is to assume the vessel was perfectly round, which the Bible does not state.

So, this particular story would not be my first choice, when trying to debunk the Bible.

P.S.

I have some other clues that God did not write the bible..

SpaceLord
3rd February 2003, 04:02 PM
Originally posted by Diogenes

To suggest that the figures are somehow wrong, is to assume the vessel was perfectly round, which the Bible does not state.

So, this particular story would not be my first choice, when trying to debunk the Bible.

P.S.

I have some other clues that God did not write the bible..

One reason I hold is that, given the popularity of his book, God would have been holding book signings. I mean, that has to sell a ton of books if they knew The Author of the Universe was going to be signing his biggest hit.

MRC_Hans
4th February 2003, 10:43 AM
Honestly, even if they had pi right to a couple of decimals, it would not prove God wrote it, just that somebody consulted a mathematician.

Hans

rwald
4th February 2003, 01:50 PM
Yea, yea. Though, since most people in pre-Greek times thought that pi was three (I bet someone's going to correct me on this, but state it anyway), it would have been amazing if the Bible had a different value.

FutileJester
4th February 2003, 02:38 PM
Originally posted by rwald
Yea, yea. Though, since most people in pre-Greek times thought that pi was three (I bet someone's going to correct me on this, but state it anyway)

Well, with an opening like that...

It seems 3 was commonly used but there were many more accurate approximations which were used when needed. By the time the Bible was being put into writing, the Egyptians used 4*(8/9)^2 = 3.16, and the Babylonians used 25/8 = 3.125.

Some history here (http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/HistTopics/Pi_through_the_ages.html).

Skeptical Greg
4th February 2003, 03:03 PM
Originally posted by rwald
Yea, yea. Though, since most people in pre-Greek times thought that pi was three (I bet someone's going to correct me on this, but state it anyway), it would have been amazing if the Bible had a different value.

I'll go along with:

" most people in pre-Greek times( not to mention today) had no use for the ratio of a circle's diameter to it's circumferance."

How's that?:D

Soapy Sam
9th February 2003, 02:11 PM
Rwald- are you implying that HE only works to 2 digit precision?

The WORD is INSPIRED, man. Correct to the nth degree.

Blasphemer! Ye're DOOMED. DOOMED!

By the way. Did you know the first man in the Bible was Scottish?

James the Sixth, also the son of Mary.

Aye, ye'll burn for this Devil's work.:D

Occasional Chemist
9th February 2003, 02:35 PM
Originally posted by rwald

The line of reasoning goes, "If the diameter was 10, the circumference should have been 31.4, or at least 31. So the Bible's wrong!" However, this argument is easily refuted.

I don't get all the fuss. He just reported His numbers to one significant figure, that's all!

SortingItAllOut
9th February 2003, 05:01 PM
I've heard this quote used by both sides of the issue and think it is not particularly strong evidence of anything.

There are far more compelling arguments that support/refute the notion of the Bible being "written by God" than this one.

I could argue that the authors of the Bible weren't particularly good at math and so didn't think of things in terms of non-integral distances.

I could just as easily argue that God certainly would understand pi and wouldn't approximate.

I could argue that an approximation is just dandy in this case, in much the way we might say that it is "3 miles to the store" when it is in fact, 3.14 miles to the store.

I could argue that God didn't believe that fractional units were of much use to the readers of the Bible, that stating pi to 2 or 3 or 100 decimal places added nothing.

And as someone stated previously, I could also use the argument that it might not be a circle.

Cheers,
Sort:)

Zep
11th February 2003, 07:24 PM
Let's look at some practical issues as though this were a real situation.
[list=1]
A "molten lake" would quite possibly be difficult to measure in cubits directly. Molten anything is bound to be fairly hot, possibly even burny. I can imagine the guy owning that cubit being a bit distressed crawling across the molten lake while measuring with his forearm. So could it have taken a few attempts by different people to get the final measurement, thus having a variation in cubits there?
If they did the diameter with a string then it may have caught fire a few times in the heat too. And string stretches.
So might it be that the "10 cubits" diameter was really just a "sighter"?
Did someone have ruler based on the Hebrew Standard Cubit(tm)? Or did they use the same cubit-person for both measurements? Or was it a big guy doing the diameter and a small guy doing the circumference and trusting God that they had the same sized cubits?
[/list=1]
Yes, like all paranormal claimants, there's some room for error that explains it in a reasonable fashion!
:D
Zep

BillyJoe
12th February 2003, 03:24 AM
Zep. he MADE the molten lake, he didn't FIND it.
If he made the thing, wouldn't he know what its diameter was. Wouldn't he, in fact, make it exactly 10 cubits in diameter as he said. He then multiplied the diameter by 3 (the recognized value of pi at the time) to get 30 cubits for the diameter. Simple as that.

xouper
11th February 2004, 12:48 PM
bump

BillyJoe
12th February 2004, 03:45 AM
Have you thought of an answer to my question yet Zep? :)

LW
12th February 2004, 05:52 AM
Originally posted by BillyJoe
Have you thought of an answer to my question yet Zep? :)

And have you found any sources for your claim that "the recognized value of pi at the time was 3"? Or even that the Hebrews were even aware of the concept of 'pi'?

For example, the Egyptian "value for pi" quoted earlier in this thread was not, in fact, used by Egyptians at all.

What Egyptians had was an algorithm to compute the area of the circle. The algorithm was:

(1) Subract 1/9th portion from the radius
(2) Multiply the result by 2.
(3) Square the result to get the area

The result of this algorithm is that a circle with the radius r has the area of 256/81 r^2. This corresponds to the value of ~3.16 for pi. However, there is not a shred of evidence to suggest that the Egyptians themselves realized that you can get the value directly by squaring the radius and multiplying with the single number. Similarily, there is no evidence to suggest that the Egyptians knew that the ratio of circumference to radius is constant for all circles.

And also, your argument the "he MADE the molten lake" is rather strange as the writer of 1 Kings 7 most probably lived several hundreds of years after Hiram cast the "molten lake". The writer didn't make the lake. [Edited to add: Moreover, Hiram was a Phoenician from Tyre. He wouldn't have had anything to do with Hebrew sacred texts in any case.]

Of all arguments against the Bible, the "pi is 3" is in my opinion among the most stupid. There's nowhere a sugestion that the figures are meant to be exact.

Brown
12th February 2004, 06:38 AM
Originally posted by LW
Of all arguments against the Bible, the "pi is 3" is in my opinion among the most stupid. There's nowhere a sugestion that the figures are meant to be exact. Agreed. However...

There are some folks out there who read the Bible ultra-literally. Although the Bible is full of numerical exaggerations, round-offs and approximations, many folks take the position that the numbers reported in the Bible are exact.

This says more about the stupidity of people interpreting the Bible than it says about the Bible itself.

Skeptical Greg
12th February 2004, 06:59 AM
Originally posted by LW

Of all arguments against the Bible, the "pi is 3" is in my opinion among the most stupid. There's nowhere a sugestion that the figures are meant to be exact.

At least in the case of " Molten Sea "....

Nowhere does it state that the circumferance was a perfect circle..

( I pointed this out earlier )

Rolfe
12th February 2004, 07:01 AM
This is annoying me disproportionately to its trivial importance.

It's "Solomon's Seal".

S-E-A-L. No, not the aquatic mammal with flippers and whiskers, the round embossed thing that you imprint wax with to seal a document or validate it as legal. (I think it's the name of a flower as well.)

S-E-A-L. That's why it's round. That's why pi comes into it.

Rolfe.

LW
12th February 2004, 07:06 AM
Originally posted by Rolfe
This is annoying me disproportionately to its trivial importance.

It's "Solomon's Seal".

That's too bad, since the "SEA" without 'L' is correct.

Check 1 Kings 7:23 if you don't believe.

Rolfe
12th February 2004, 07:18 AM
I'll have to wait till I get home, but if I'm wrong, I apologise.

Rolfe.

Skeptical Greg
12th February 2004, 07:27 AM
Originally posted by Rolfe
I'll have to wait till I get home, but if I'm wrong, I apologise.

Rolfe. The Bible Gateway (http://bible.gospelcom.net/bible?passage=1KGS+7&language=english&version=KJV) 23 And he made a molten sea, ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about, and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.

LW
12th February 2004, 07:27 AM
Originally posted by Rolfe
I'll have to wait till I get home, but if I'm wrong, I apologise.

Or you could check online from Bible Gateway (http://bible.gospelcom.net/cgi-bin/bible?passage=1KGS+7&language=english&version=NIV&showfn=on&showxref=on).

In short:

Salomon's Sea: a bronze circle 10 cubits across located outside the Temple of Jerusalem.

Salomon's Seal: a mystical symbol used by the occultists.

(Though you don't find the latter from the Bible).

Agammamon
12th February 2004, 09:55 AM
Originally posted by Diogenes
. . .To suggest that the figures are somehow wrong, is to assume the vessel was perfectly round, which the Bible does not state. . .

yes, but if it were't perfectly circular wouldn't the circumference have to be greater than pi*d rather than less?

In any case the accuracy of the bible is called into question either way. Either of the measurements may be correct (the diameter may be 10 cubits or the circumference may be 30), but not both. The value of pi really isn't up for debate. Or the values given are approximations. Either way you look at it it's a blow for biblical inerrancy.

Skeptical Greg
12th February 2004, 11:27 AM
Originally posted by Agammamon

yes, but if it were't perfectly circular wouldn't the circumference have to be greater than pi*d rather than less?

In any case the accuracy of the bible is called into question either way. Either of the measurements may be correct (the diameter may be 10 cubits or the circumference may be 30), but not both. The value of pi really isn't up for debate. Or the values given are approximations. Either way you look at it it's a blow for biblical inerrancy.

Good point.. Someone should have hammered me with that sooner...

I'm still thinking they probably weren't as precise with their cubits as we are with some of our measurements, and when they called 3.14159.... cubits = 3 cubits, it wasn't like they were lying or ignorant.. They just didn't have a term for .14159.... cubits..

Agammamon
12th February 2004, 12:06 PM
I think you're quite right. However if the bible is inerrant and the universe is supposed to be 6 kyr (old despite all observations to the contrary), then I for one am not going to give God partial credit on this exam problem.

Rolfe
12th February 2004, 12:51 PM
I'm here to eat my statutory portion of humble pie. I was wrong. That'll teach me to post without being sure of my facts. Except maybe it won't!

Just goes to show. Sometimes what you think you know, just ain't so.

Sorry.

Rolfe.

TeaBag420
12th February 2004, 02:40 PM
Originally posted by rwald

(By the way, I don't think the Bible is infallible, unless bats became mammals in recent times. I just wanted to point out that, mathematically, this particular scene is not necessarily inaccurate.)

Where in the Bible does it say bats are not mammals? Inquiring minds want to know.

Abdul Alhazred
12th February 2004, 03:59 PM
The Biblical value of pi is correct to one significant digit. That's not good enough for you?

It is exactly correct if a circle is really a hexagon.

Oh ye of little faith! :p :D

BillyJoe
13th February 2004, 02:20 AM
I also stand corrected.
My reading was much too superficial
to have warranted any contribution.

I want ceptimus to erase my big pencil permanently

BillyJoe
(ceptimus, I was only joking of course)

LW
13th February 2004, 02:41 AM
Originally posted by TeaBag420

Where in the Bible does it say bats are not mammals? Inquiring minds want to know.

Well, it doesn't say exactly that but it says that they are birds. Leviticus 11:13-19:

13 'These are the birds you are to detest and not eat because they are detestable: the eagle, the vulture, the black vulture,
14 the red kite, any kind of black kite,
15 any kind of raven,
16 the horned owl, the screech owl, the gull, any kind of hawk,
17 the little owl, the cormorant, the great owl,
18 the white owl, the desert owl, the osprey,
19 the stork, any kind of heron, the hoopoe and the bat.

I don't know ancient Hebrew so I can't comment on their general usage of the term 'bird'.

The same chapter also mentions that grashoppers have four legs.

LW
13th February 2004, 03:26 AM
Originally posted by Diogenes

I'm still thinking they probably weren't as precise with their cubits as we are with some of our measurements, and when they called 3.14159.... cubits = 3 cubits, it wasn't like they were lying or ignorant.. They just didn't have a term for .14159.... cubits..

That particular Bible passage is not a mathematical treatise. It is a description of a temple. The point of the text is to tell everybody how great ruler Solomon was as he could build a temple such that was never seen before in Palestine. In two parts of the text the author gives dimensions of various structures "as measured by line".

1 Kings 7:15
15 He cast two bronze pillars, each eighteen cubits high and twelve cubits round, by line.

1 Kings 7:23
23 He made the Sea of cast metal, circular in shape, measuring ten cubits from rim to rim and five cubits high. It took a line of thirty cubits to measure round it.

The modern (1992) Finnish translation has slightly different words in both places and translating it to English results in: "a line had to be [18/30] cubits long before it measured round the [pillar/sea]".

So, this gives the idea that the author measured the circumference of the Sea, not computed it from the diameter. Note that he doesn't give the diameter of the pillars but gives the diameter of the Sea. To me this seems like an indication that he didn't know how to compute diameter from circumference or vice versa, and the diameter of Sea is also a result of measurement.

The Hebrews certainly knew of fractions [the Pentateuch is filled with laws using them] so author probably could have written, for example, that "The Sea measured 9 and 2/3 cubits from rim to rim" (or whatever fraction in the measuring line would have been closest to the correct diameter). However, he wasn't aiming for mathematical precision, so he rounded it to 10.

Similar thing happens almost daily even now. When there's a news item that "there were 50,000 persons in the audience of a concert", no one thinks that there were exactly 50,000 persons but the news writer just took the closest convenient figure. He would do this even if he knew the exact ticket sales figure and no one really claims that the "50,000" is an error.

On the other hand, the Egyptian "value" for pi comes from a papyrus that was basically a mathematics textbook. The scroll contains a number of excercises for student scribes with the aim of teaching them how to solve practical problems: measuring the area of a field, dividing daily rations of workers equally, etc. Here we can say that the Egyptians were in error with regards to their circle handling since their computational methods give results that we know to be incorrect. [And thinking again, I may have remembered the algorithm incorrectly, since it was first square the 8/9 of radius and then multiply it by four, but the result stays the same.]

The Don
13th February 2004, 04:22 AM
Is it *so* unreasonable for the value of pi to be changing. When that verse was written, the value of pi was exactly 3 and it has gradually crept up to the current value. in 20,000 years time it'll be nearly 4.

Is it so unreasonable that a 5 % increase occurs in over 2000 years ? After all the average size of servings in the U.S. have doubled in the last 20 years. On that rate of increase, pi would now be around 30 billion.

BillyJoe
13th February 2004, 04:44 AM
The Don,

You are still having a party. :D<sup>*</sup>
Get out of that ridiculous outfit and behave yourself please.
LW is the only one making sense here and you know it

BillyJoe
(Yeah, I know, he has no sense of humour. :cool: )

* "Don's Party" was a famous Australian film.

Abdul Alhazred
13th February 2004, 07:22 AM
Originally posted by BillyJoe
The Don,

You are still having a party. :D<sup>*</sup>
Get out of that ridiculous outfit and behave yourself please.
LW is the only one making sense here and you know it

BillyJoe
(Yeah, I know, he has no sense of humour. :cool: )

* "Don's Party" was a famous Australian film.

The Creator hath said unto me,
That pi is equal to three!
As for you heathens, well
you are going to Hell!
And a circle's a hexagon. Wheee!

TeaBag420
13th February 2004, 01:08 PM
Thanks for the citation, I couldn't find it.

Interesting to note that none of the birds cited are flightless. After all, who hunts eagles? Although in Kazakhstan they hunt WITH eagles (considering hawks somewhat effeminate, maybe okay for kids, but not a man).

How stupid do you need to be to have to be told to concentrate your efforts on birds that are easy to catch?

The anthropologist Mary Douglas wrote some good stuff on Leviticus and how some of the dietary rules actually made sense.

Originally posted by LW

Well, it doesn't say exactly that but it says that they are birds. Leviticus 11:13-19:

I don't know ancient Hebrew so I can't comment on their general usage of the term 'bird'.

The same chapter also mentions that grashoppers have four legs.

Daniel Gracely
31st December 2011, 08:37 AM
The 30-cubit line compassing about Solomon’s Sea appears not to be the circumference (which is implied from the diameter to be 31.4159+ cubits), but a line on the outside of the hemisphere dividing the two rows of carved gourds. The line actually represents the golden mean to within 1/3400, well within an acceptable margin of error. BTW this written demonstration of the golden mean predates Pythagoras by 300+ years.

This was discovered (or rediscovered) by my brother, David, and me just this past summer. Here is how it came about. Thirty years ago my brother studied the estimated length of the sacred cubit from Piazzi Smyth, John Taylor, William Foxwell Albright, David Davidson, and even Sir Isaac Newton (who wrote an entire monograph on the subject, citing 7 independent lines of evidence). All of them came to the conclusion that the biblical (sacred) cubit was about 25”, or what Taylor assumed was 1/10,000,000th polar radius of the earth. Based on encyclopedic information about the polar radius of the earth, my brother’s figure for 1/10,000,000th is 25.0265”. Out of curiosity he plugged this information into the measurements of Solomon’s Sea. He assumed the 2,000 and 3,000 baths in I King and II Chronicles represented the actual fill line and fullest capacity, respectively. Using the 3,000 baths measurement, he suspected the volumetric space for a single bath (the standard biblical unit of liquid measurement) might work out to 22.414 liters, the same as a molar volume of gas at standard temperature and pressure. (In fact, it works out to 22.4149 liters.) And since the O.T. book of Ezekiel states that one bath is equal to one ephah (the standard unit of dry measure), the implication is that either all these calculations are freakish mathematical coincidences, or else a Common Designer used the same standard to determine the basic unit of solid, liquid, and gaseous measures (the three forms of matter). In fact, the Bible states that Solomon’s father (King David) was divinely guided in the design of the artifacts pertaining to the Temple, which, of course, would include the Sea.

Now, people cannot be forced to believe in a thing. And I’m not so naive to think anyone here will springboard from the info above to a belief in the biblical God. But the info above points out, if nothing else, that certain passages from Scripture long thought by some skeptics to point to the stupidity of biblical literalists, should be more rigorously evaluated before they are dismissed. Incidentally, of course, I’m not saying that some numbers in the Bible are not rounded off (e.g., the ages of patriarchs). But the failure of anyone here to give the only historical reference to the Sea’s shape (Josephus/hemisphere) typifies, to me at least, the failure of the most aggressive skeptics here to scrutinize their own skepticism, indicating a disbelief rooted considerably more in presupposition than in any real study of the subject.

Jorghnassen
31st December 2011, 09:25 AM
Wow, ancient thread necromancy by a newbie. It even predates my registration to this forum!

Dancing David
31st December 2011, 09:50 AM
Now, people cannot be forced to believe in a thing. And I’m not so naive to think anyone here will springboard from the info above to a belief in the biblical God. But the info above points out, if nothing else, that certain passages from Scripture long thought by some skeptics to point to the stupidity of biblical literalists, should be more rigorously evaluated before they are dismissed. Incidentally, of course, I’m not saying that some numbers in the Bible are not rounded off (e.g., the ages of patriarchs). But the failure of anyone here to give the only historical reference to the Sea’s shape (Josephus/hemisphere) typifies, to me at least, the failure of the most aggressive skeptics here to scrutinize their own skepticism, indicating a disbelief rooted considerably more in presupposition than in any real study of the subject.

Wow, a huge strawman in the first post?

And necromancy to boot.

Hi Daniel , welcome to the forums.

So where are these aggressive sceptics talking about this, Do you too mean Solomon's Seal or something?

I always liked this part where Moses is mad because God supposedly told the Hebrai to slay all the Midians, but after discussion they decide it is okay to keep the virgin girls.

" 14And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, with the captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, which came from the battle.
15And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive?
16Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.
17Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. "

"And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him."

Now what was the 'sin of Peor'?

" 1: And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab.
2: And they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods: and the people did eat, and bowed down to their gods.
3: And Israel joined himself unto Baal-peor: and the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel.
4: And the LORD said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before the LORD against the sun, that the fierce anger of the LORD may be turned away from Israel.
5: And Moses said unto the judges of Israel, Slay ye every one his men that were joined unto Baal-peor.
6: And, behold, one of the children of Israel came and brought unto his brethren a Midianitish woman in the sight of Moses, and in the sight of all the congregation of the children of Israel, who were weeping before the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
7: And when Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from among the congregation, and took a javelin in his hand;
8: And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.
9: And those that died in the plague were twenty and four thousand. "

Oh thats right the sin of Peor is that the Children of Israel don't always do what God wants them to do!

So they kill everyone in the city. And cut off their heads and hang them in the sun.

catsmate1
31st December 2011, 02:13 PM
Wow, ancient thread necromancy by a newbie. It even predates my registration to this forum!
Indeed. It doesn't even have an OP date in the forum listing.

catsmate1
31st December 2011, 02:22 PM
The 30-cubit line compassing about Solomon’s Sea appears not to be the circumference (which is implied from the diameter to be 31.4159+ cubits), but a line on the outside of the hemisphere dividing the two rows of carved gourds. The line actually represents the golden mean to within 1/3400, well within an acceptable margin of error. BTW this written demonstration of the golden mean predates Pythagoras by 300+ years.

This was discovered (or rediscovered) by my brother, David, and me just this past summer. Here is how it came about. Thirty years ago my brother studied the estimated length of the sacred cubit from Piazzi Smyth, John Taylor, William Foxwell Albright, David Davidson, and even Sir Isaac Newton (who wrote an entire monograph on the subject, citing 7 independent lines of evidence). All of them came to the conclusion that the biblical (sacred) cubit was about 25”, or what Taylor assumed was 1/10,000,000th polar radius of the earth. Based on encyclopedic information about the polar radius of the earth, my brother’s figure for 1/10,000,000th is 25.0265”. Out of curiosity he plugged this information into the measurements of Solomon’s Sea. He assumed the 2,000 and 3,000 baths in I King and II Chronicles represented the actual fill line and fullest capacity, respectively. Using the 3,000 baths measurement, he suspected the volumetric space for a single bath (the standard biblical unit of liquid measurement) might work out to 22.414 liters, the same as a molar volume of gas at standard temperature and pressure. (In fact, it works out to 22.4149 liters.) And since the O.T. book of Ezekiel states that one bath is equal to one ephah (the standard unit of dry measure), the implication is that either all these calculations are freakish mathematical coincidences, or else a Common Designer used the same standard to determine the basic unit of solid, liquid, and gaseous measures (the three forms of matter). In fact, the Bible states that Solomon’s father (King David) was divinely guided in the design of the artifacts pertaining to the Temple, which, of course, would include the Sea.

Now, people cannot be forced to believe in a thing. And I’m not so naive to think anyone here will springboard from the info above to a belief in the biblical God. But the info above points out, if nothing else, that certain passages from Scripture long thought by some skeptics to point to the stupidity of biblical literalists, should be more rigorously evaluated before they are dismissed. Incidentally, of course, I’m not saying that some numbers in the Bible are not rounded off (e.g., the ages of patriarchs). But the failure of anyone here to give the only historical reference to the Sea’s shape (Josephus/hemisphere) typifies, to me at least, the failure of the most aggressive skeptics here to scrutinize their own skepticism, indicating a disbelief rooted considerably more in presupposition than in any real study of the subject.
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:

Daniel Gracely
6th January 2012, 08:09 PM
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:

My, oh my! How inconvenient you find facts! Or do you not even understand that idealizations of universal constants are independent of any particular system of measurement? For my brother’s translation of the volumetric capacity of the biblical bath based on the biblical cubit to today’s metric nomenclature is merely one translation possible. That is, IF the temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit and IF there is 1.0 moles and IF we use the grams-system of measurement, then the idealization of the universal constant may be expressed thus…. But note that the same universal constants may be expressed (fractionally, where necessary) in e.g., ounces, pounds, drams, grains, pennyweight, and at a half or 1.5 of 14.7 pounds of pressure per sq. inch and at 20 or 40 or 60 degrees, etc.

Transliterating idealizations of universal constants pertaining to Solomon’s Sea therefore have nothing whatsoever to do with “numerology.” I’m puzzled why this distinction between universal constants and that which would measure them has escaped your attention? Indeed, any material part of the universe may be used as the standard of measure for any other material thing or things in the universe at various temperatures, etc. In short, your argument is all straw.

Though not exactly analogous, your statement reminds me of that said by the professor of the young raconteur, C.K. Chesterton, to Chesterton’s mother: “There goes six foot two inches of genius. Treasure him!” Except to say, I don’t believe the professor was claiming that C.K. Chester could not exist were there not the imperial system of measurement around to provide a metonym.

At present it appears half your words are ad hominem, and the remainder uninformed. But I understand your dilemma, since from the skeptical side there really aren’t substantive arguments that can be raised. Hence the passé strategy of the red herring by another commentator. Yawn.

lionking
6th January 2012, 08:19 PM
Daniel, do you believe in the literal truth of the entire bible?

Kid Eager
6th January 2012, 10:43 PM
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:

My, oh my! How inconvenient you find facts! Or do you not even understand that idealizations of universal constants are independent of any particular system of measurement? For my brother’s translation of the volumetric capacity of the biblical bath based on the biblical cubit to today’s metric nomenclature is merely one translation possible. That is, IF the temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit and IF there is 1.0 moles and IF we use the grams-system of measurement, then the idealization of the universal constant may be expressed thus…. But note that the same universal constants may be expressed (fractionally, where necessary) in e.g., ounces, pounds, drams, grains, pennyweight, and at a half or 1.5 of 14.7 pounds of pressure per sq. inch and at 20 or 40 or 60 degrees, etc.

Transliterating idealizations of universal constants pertaining to Solomon’s Sea therefore have nothing whatsoever to do with “numerology.” I’m puzzled why this distinction between universal constants and that which would measure them has escaped your attention? Indeed, any material part of the universe may be used as the standard of measure for any other material thing or things in the universe at various temperatures, etc. In short, your argument is all straw.

Though not exactly analogous, your statement reminds me of that said by the professor of the young raconteur, C.K. Chesterton, to Chesterton’s mother: “There goes six foot two inches of genius. Treasure him!” Except to say, I don’t believe the professor was claiming that C.K. Chester could not exist were there not the imperial system of measurement around to provide a metonym.

At present it appears half your words are ad hominem, and the remainder uninformed. But I understand your dilemma, since from the skeptical side there really aren’t substantive arguments that can be raised. Hence the passé strategy of the red herring by another commentator. Yawn.

Well, I for one am convinced. What do I need to do?

marplots
7th January 2012, 12:29 AM
There's no mystery here. The Bible was written long ago. Pi could certainly have changed since then.

zooterkin
7th January 2012, 05:04 AM
There's no mystery here. The Bible was written long ago. Pi could certainly have changed since then.

Nonsense.

dafydd
7th January 2012, 05:07 AM
Nonsense.

I don't think that marplots was being entirely serious. At least I hope that is the case.

Jack by the hedge
7th January 2012, 05:21 AM
My, oh my! How inconvenient you find facts! Or do you not even understand that idealizations of universal constants are independent of any particular system of measurement?

You appear to be confused between dimensionless and dimensional physical constants. The molar volume of an ideal gas is entirely dependant on the units of mass and length through which it is expressed.

When you say "the same universal constants may be expressed (fractionally, where necessary)..." what you actually mean is that the same constant would be expressed as an entirely different value... In other words, outside a gramme/meter measuring system, the value you "calculated" has no special meaning. Numerological nonsense.

Dancing David
7th January 2012, 07:36 AM
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:

My, oh my! How inconvenient you find facts! Or do you not even understand that idealizations of universal constants are independent of any particular system of measurement? For my brother’s translation of the volumetric capacity of the biblical bath based on the biblical cubit to today’s metric nomenclature is merely one translation possible. That is, IF the temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit and IF there is 1.0 moles and IF we use the grams-system of measurement, then the idealization of the universal constant may be expressed thus…. But note that the same universal constants may be expressed (fractionally, where necessary) in e.g., ounces, pounds, drams, grains, pennyweight, and at a half or 1.5 of 14.7 pounds of pressure per sq. inch and at 20 or 40 or 60 degrees, etc.

Transliterating idealizations of universal constants pertaining to Solomon’s Sea therefore have nothing whatsoever to do with “numerology.” I’m puzzled why this distinction between universal constants and that which would measure them has escaped your attention? Indeed, any material part of the universe may be used as the standard of measure for any other material thing or things in the universe at various temperatures, etc. In short, your argument is all straw.

Though not exactly analogous, your statement reminds me of that said by the professor of the young raconteur, C.K. Chesterton, to Chesterton’s mother: “There goes six foot two inches of genius. Treasure him!” Except to say, I don’t believe the professor was claiming that C.K. Chester could not exist were there not the imperial system of measurement around to provide a metonym.

At present it appears half your words are ad hominem, and the remainder uninformed. But I understand your dilemma, since from the skeptical side there really aren’t substantive arguments that can be raised. Hence the passé strategy of the red herring by another commentator. Yawn.
Yawn, on you for rhetorical spin.

Here we go your own quote
"Using the 3,000 baths measurement, he suspected the volumetric space for a single bath (the standard biblical unit of liquid measurement) might work out to 22.414 liters, the same as a molar volume of gas at standard temperature and pressure. (In fact, it works out to 22.4149 liters.) "

BTW 'might work out" does that mean what? I can pretend that it does?

Or I chose a value so that this would work out?

yawn indeed.

"standard temperature and pressure", so why did Solomon choose the "standard" temperature of the freezing point of water ? does god like the phase transition from liquid to solid of water for some reason? Why not blood or gold? Or the transition from liquid water to vapor?

Did Solomon build this thing in freezing temperatures?

double yawn?

What does "standard' mean in this case, not a 'universal' but an arbitrary standard chosen for convenience by a bunch of people.

Yawn2

Jack by the hedge
7th January 2012, 07:51 AM
I'd like to know which encyclopedia the ancients used to look up the polar circumference of the earth.

Dancing David
7th January 2012, 08:00 AM
Charles Piazzi Smith ?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Piazzi_Smyth

"Smyth subsequently published his book Our Inheritance in the Great Pyramid in 1864 (which he expanded over the years and is also titled The Great Pyramid: Its Secrets and Mysteries Revealed). Smyth claimed that the measurements he obtained from the Great Pyramid of Giza indicated a unit of length, the pyramid inch, equivalent to 1.001 British inches, that could have been the standard of measurement by the pyramid's architects. From this he extrapolated a number of other measurements, including the pyramid pint, the sacred cubit, and the pyramid scale of temperature."

Oh now that is reliable, I am sure modern archaeologists all recognize that!

John Taylor
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyramid_inch

"aylor claimed that the measurements indicated that the ancients had used a unit of measure about 1/1000 greater than a modern British inch.[2] This was origin of the "pyramid inch". Taylor regarded the "pyramid inch" to be 1/25 of the "sacred cubit" whose existence had earlier been postulated by Isaac Newton.[3] The principal argument was that the total length of the four sides of the pyramid would be 36524 (100 times the number of days in a year) if measured in pyramid inches. "

That is even more remarkable, here we have a totally made up way to find the sacred cubit. Not like an archaeologist would use.

William Foxwell Albright

I want your source and exact citation on this one Daniel, where exactly does Albright derive the value of the alleged 'sacred cubit' that you claim is the same.

I want your source. And not from AboveTopSecret

David Davidson?
And what exactly was the way he derived that, by reading your first two citations, hmmm, a little bit of self referencing there?

How exactly did Davidson derive this value?

And now for your corker Sir Issac Newton, who also believed in witches...
"Sir Isaac Newton (who wrote an entire monograph on the subject, citing 7 independent lines of evidence)"

http://www.newtonproject.sussex.ac.uk/view/texts/normalized/THEM00276

have at it , where is this astounding evidence?

Yup that sure is definitive.

TubbaBlubba
7th January 2012, 01:33 PM
There's no mystery here. The Bible was written long ago. Pi could certainly have changed since then.

Yeah, all these "skeptics" are convinced that people evolved from pond scum by slowly changing over millenia, but can't even accept that a mathematical constant might change a few percent over the years :rolleyes:

Lowpro
7th January 2012, 01:39 PM
Yeah, all these "skeptics" are convinced that people evolved from pond scum by slowly changing over millenia, but can't even accept that a mathematical constant might change a few percent over the years :rolleyes:

I understand it's satirical, but we have to be careful before someone may actually take it seriously (a constant changing... you can't even put those two words next to each other...you just can't.)

jimbob
7th January 2012, 02:01 PM
There's no mystery here. The Bible was written long ago. Pi could certainly have changed since then.

I like The Don's explanation

Is it *so* unreasonable for the value of pi to be changing. When that verse was written, the value of pi was exactly 3 and it has gradually crept up to the current value. in 20,000 years time it'll be nearly 4.

Is it so unreasonable that a 5 % increase occurs in over 2000 years ? After all the average size of servings in the U.S. have doubled in the last 20 years. On that rate of increase, pi would now be around 30 billion.

Wolrab
7th January 2012, 02:03 PM
It is obvious to me that the biblical value of pi can be exact if one person measured the diameter and another the circumference (so long as they used their forearms and not a standardized cubitstick).

dafydd
7th January 2012, 02:18 PM
I understand it's satirical, but we have to be careful before someone may actually take it seriously (a constant changing... you can't even put those two words next to each other...you just can't.)

The word 'constant' does give the game away.

Lowpro
7th January 2012, 02:29 PM
The word 'constant' does give the game away.

Reminds me of the joke:

A businessman decides it's time to give his employees a test to determine if they really are qualified for their jobs.

First he calls in an engineer and asks "How much is 2+2"? Well the engineer breaks out his slide rule, does a couple calculations and says "It is four" The businessman is satisfied and ushers him out.

Next the businessman calls in a physicist and asks him the same question. The physicist goes to his chalkboard and writes furiously. He takes out a couple models and uses them and reports back, "The answer is almost certainly close to 4; it could be a little more or a little less though." The businessman is satisfied, and ushers him out.

Finally the businessman calls in his lawyer and again asks him the same question, "what is 2+2?" The lawyer looks shiftily around the office, lowers the blinds and pulls over the drapes and walks eerily close to the businessman and asks "How much do we want it to be?"

roger
7th January 2012, 02:41 PM
So: the bible's measure for Pi is correct if the measurements were incorrect? Thus, the bible is correct no matter what.

Ya.

CapelDodger
7th January 2012, 02:47 PM
Regarding the bowl not being perfectly circular : the caster was a skilled crafstman, it isn't difficult to scribe out a near-perfect circle, and something like this, destined for a Temple, is going to be of top quality. (It's a matter of respect, capisce? Have you heard what this god does to people who offend him, even accidentally?) That's without it being involved in purification rites, and of the priesthood, not the proles. I think we can safely conclude it was a perfect circle.

As to the very erudite suggestion that the circumference line was drawn below the lip, I favour a simpler interpretation of the text (that's pretty much a habit of mine). This text is a boast, so it will be mentioning the largest circumference, rounding up if anything. The writers clearly believed that the circumference of a circle is 3 times the diameter. I doubt such a rule-of-thumb caused many plane-crashes or other technological glitches.

TubbaBlubba
7th January 2012, 03:30 PM
Regarding the bowl not being perfectly circular : the caster was a skilled crafstman, it isn't difficult to scribe out a near-perfect circle, and something like this, destined for a Temple, is going to be of top quality. (It's a matter of respect, capisce? Have you heard what this god does to people who offend him, even accidentally?) That's without it being involved in purification rites, and of the priesthood, not the proles. I think we can safely conclude it was a perfect circle.

True, all you need to do is create a big compass, which is a trivial matter of engineering.

catsmate1
7th January 2012, 03:44 PM
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:
Try and learn how to use the Quote function, it's not hard.

My, oh my! How inconvenient you find facts!
No I *like* facts, so as the one that you are talking rubbish.

Or do you not even understand that idealizations of universal constants are independent of any particular system of measurement?
The idea gas volume is not independent of units; someone with basic knowledge of science would know this. Either you are ignorant of something I learned at approximately twelve years of age or you are lying in an attempt to shore up your beliefs and the ego investment you have in them

For my brother’s translation of the volumetric capacity of the biblical bath based on the biblical cubit to today’s metric nomenclature is merely one translation possible.
Right................ The mystic cubit, now what was the origin of that?:rolleyes:

That is, IF the temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit
273K or 0°C please. Try and get at least one of the units correct. Remember the importance of dimensional consistency.

and IF there is 1.0 moles and IF we use the grams-system of measurement, then the idealization of the universal constant may be expressed thus…. But note that the same universal constants may be expressed (fractionally, where necessary) in e.g., ounces, pounds, drams, grains, pennyweight, and at a half or 1.5 of 14.7 pounds of pressure per sq. inch and at 20 or 40 or 60 degrees, etc.
Yes they can. But then the value of 22.4 doesn't occur. Basic science, again learned in early secondary education.

Transliterating idealizations of universal constants pertaining to Solomon’s Sea therefore have nothing whatsoever to do with “numerology.”
You might want to refer to a dictionary before using words of more than three syllables, you make yourself look more of an idiot when you use them incorrectly.

I’m puzzled why this distinction between universal constants and that which would measure them has escaped your attention?
I'm quite familiar with universal constants and the need to express them in the correct units, for non-dimensionless constants. You don't seem to understand this.

Indeed, any material part of the universe may be used as the standard of measure for any other material thing or things in the universe at various temperatures, etc. In short, your argument is all straw.
More attempts to divert attention from your errors with pseudo-intellectual posturing. How surprising.:rolleyes:

Though not exactly analogous, your statement reminds me of that said by the professor of the young raconteur, C.K. Chesterton, to Chesterton’s mother: “There goes six foot two inches of genius. Treasure him!” Except to say, I don’t believe the professor was claiming that C.K. Chester could not exist were there not the imperial system of measurement around to provide a metonym.
Is this irrelevant nonsense supposed to add something to this discussion? Or is it another attempt to cover over the nonsensical nature of your "theory" with a pseudo-intellectual patina?

At present it appears half your words are ad hominem, and the remainder uninformed.
Like most woosters you appear not to understand what ad hominem actually means. I suggest you try a dictionary.

But I understand your dilemma, since from the skeptical side there really aren’t substantive arguments that can be raised.
And now the projection (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_projection). :rolleyes: Just because you can't address the gaping flaws in your "theory" is now reason to insult those of use intelligent, educated and open minded enough to see the problem.
Hence the passé strategy of the red herring by another commentator. Yawn.

Wow, so many words wasted in your pathetic attempt to wallpaper over the fact you are very obviously wrong.

dafydd
7th January 2012, 03:45 PM
True, all you need to do is create a big compass, which is a trivial matter of engineering.

Yes, a rope and a stake.

CapelDodger
7th January 2012, 03:45 PM
True, all you need to do is create a big compass, which is a trivial matter of engineering.

A piece of cord and two pins, one pin in the centre and one to scribe the circumference. Easy.

Squaring the drawn circle is a bugger, though ;).

marplots
7th January 2012, 07:05 PM
So: the bible's measure for Pi is correct if the measurements were incorrect? Thus, the bible is correct no matter what.

Ya.

Now you got it.

I was thinking that, not only was the Bible written a few hundred years ago, but that whole incident took place in the Middle East. It's no surprise that the value of Pi would be different in that part of the world.

I'd also like to point out that while the Bible published the correct value for Pi (in that time and in that place) modern scientists and mathematicians cannot tell you the correct value today.

If you really pin them down, they always write it something like this:
3.1415... Those three dots are mathematical shorthand for: "We don't know the whole number."

This is why Pi is referred to as a transcendental, or divine number. Only God can know the whole thing. Once again, the Bible triumphs over all critics.

Nowhere Man
7th January 2012, 08:18 PM
Transcendental is not the same as divine. In mathematics, transcendental means that it cannot be the root of a polynomial equation. It's a subset of irrational, which cannot be expressed as the ratio of two whole numbers.

Pi and e are transcendental. Most square/cube/fourth/etc. roots are irrational. The decimal expansion of both types of number neither comes to an end nor repeats. We don't know the exact values for any irrational number.

So, are irrationals also divine, because "only God can know the whole thing?"

And the 3.14... thing? For everyday purposes, you don't really need more than 3 or 4 digits of pi to get a very accurate result, as good as or better than your tape measure would produce. So why bother with more?

Fred

Daniel Gracely
7th January 2012, 09:25 PM
Kid Eager writes:
Well, I for one am convinced. What do I need to do?

If you’re serious, then accept the central message of the Bible. It is that Jesus Christ has suffered the punishment for our selfishness, so that we may escape God’s wrath for our sins. But it is more than this. It is the hope that one day we will be with the Resurrected Christ, in a world free from the kind of trouble and pain that presently exists.

Unfortunately, all of us have broken the golden rule from time to time, to one degree or another. But the good news is that Christ stands ready to forgive us if we ask him to, and have a change of mind about our selfishness. I hope you will trust Christ today.

Daniel Gracely
7th January 2012, 09:28 PM
Lionking writes:
Daniel, do you believe in the literal truth of the entire bible?

I would say that I believe in the linguistic truth of the Bible. If by “literal” you ask whether I believe that Jesus, when he said to a few of his disciples that He would make them fishers of men, meant they would draw up men in nets from the Sea of Galilee just like a fish, then, no, I do not always take the Bible literally. However, I believe that most of the Bible is meant to be understood literally. A smaller portion is meant to be taken as literature. Certain passages are both literary and literal. Christians do not always agree about which passages are literal or literary. But all true Christians believe the essentials about Christ.

Daniel Gracely
7th January 2012, 09:34 PM
Dancing David,

A sharp eye. My mistake in misquoting my brother on Albright. David used him to discuss the royal bath (not the sacred cubit), which he (my brother) suspects equaled the biblical bath.

ddt
7th January 2012, 09:51 PM
A piece of cord and two pins, one pin in the centre and one to scribe the circumference. Easy.

Squaring the drawn circle is a bugger, though ;).
(Lindeman, 1882) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proof_that_%CF%80_is_transcendental#Transcendence_ of_e_and_.CF.80)

Now you got it.

I was thinking that, not only was the Bible written a few hundred years ago, but that whole incident took place in the Middle East. It's no surprise that the value of Pi would be different in that part of the world.
Pi is a constant, it doesn't change. It's the ratio between the diameter and the circumference of a circle in a Euclidean geometry, and that does not change with time.

I'd also like to point out that while the Bible published the correct value for Pi (in that time and in that place) modern scientists and mathematicians cannot tell you the correct value today.

If you really pin them down, they always write it something like this:
3.1415... Those three dots are mathematical shorthand for: "We don't know the whole number."
If you ask a mathematician for the value of pi, you get an exact answer, in the form of one of the many infinite sums that yield pi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_formulae_involving_%CF%80). There's nothing incorrect about that.

This is why Pi is referred to as a transcendental, or divine number. Only God can know the whole thing. Once again, the Bible triumphs over all critics.
Could you point out where "God" factors into mathematics? And your "translation" of transcendental is way off base.

Transcendental is not the same as divine. In mathematics, transcendental means that it cannot be the root of a polynomial equation. It's a subset of irrational, which cannot be expressed as the ratio of two whole numbers.

Pi and e are transcendental. Most square/cube/fourth/etc. roots are irrational. The decimal expansion of both types of number neither comes to an end nor repeats.
Yep. And the difference is that a transcendental number is not algebraic; an algebraic number being a number that is the root of a polynomial with integer coefficients. Those square/cube/fourth roots are evidently algebraic, i.e., not transcendental.

Begin 19th C., Gauss (?) proved that algebraic numbers are exactly those numbers that can be constructed with ruler and compass.

We don't know the exact values for any irrational number.
Evidently, we know the exact values of algebraic numbers as we can construct them with ruler and compass. As to pi, this question gets philosophical into "what is to know?" There's a slew of formulae which calculate pi, we can calculate with that up to arbitrary precision, so I'd say we know the exact value of pi.

Daniel Gracely
7th January 2012, 10:04 PM
catsmate1

Another amusing reply and a misquote of me to boot. I never said it was independent of units. In effect I stated that nomenclature about universal constants (e.g. ideal gas) is not bound to be restrictively translated to any particular system of measurement, such as the metric system. It’s sad, really, to see you compelled to misrepresent an opponent’s argument rather than actually address what he wrote. Perhaps some day you’ll become conversant enough with the subject so that we can discuss. In the meantime you’ll find “nomenclature” under “N” in your dictionary.

randman
7th January 2012, 10:17 PM
I know that many of you probably consider the following Bible quote as evidence that God did not directly write the Bible:

The line of reasoning goes, "If the diameter was 10, the circumference should have been 31.4, or at least 31. So the Bible's wrong!" However, this argument is easily refuted. If the sea's real diameter was 9.65, the circumference would have been 30.32. These values round to 10 and 30, and so the Bible is right again!

(By the way, I don't think the Bible is infallible, unless bats became mammals in recent times. I just wanted to point out that, mathematically, this particular scene is not necessarily inaccurate.)

Just a quick note: the skeptic argument on bats and birds is stupid. The Hebrew word for flying creatures, of course, includes bats and birds. So what? As far as bats and mammals? Not sure where that comes from but since the term "mammals" didn't exist then, looks like another semantic argument not based on reality.

SezMe
7th January 2012, 10:31 PM
First he calls in an engineer and asks "How much is 2+2"? Well the engineer breaks out his slide rule, does a couple calculations and says "It is four" The businessman is satisfied and ushers him out.
[pedantic crap]
Slide rules do (did?) multiplication, not addition.
[/pedantic crap]

Lowpro
7th January 2012, 10:37 PM
[pedantic crap]
Slide rules do (did?) multiplication, not addition.
[/pedantic crap]

What device is most likely associated with an engineer?

Yea, slide rule.

marplots
7th January 2012, 11:26 PM
(Lindeman, 1882) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proof_that_%CF%80_is_transcendental#Transcendence_ of_e_and_.CF.80)

Pi is a constant, it doesn't change. It's the ratio between the diameter and the circumference of a circle in a Euclidean geometry, and that does not change with time.

Well, apparently it does, if you accept the modern version is different than the one calculated in the Bible.

If you ask a mathematician for the value of pi, you get an exact answer, in the form of one of the many infinite sums that yield pi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_formulae_involving_%CF%80). There's nothing incorrect about that.
I'm not a mathematician, but I did note that a lot of those expressions went from negative infinity to positive infinity. This reminds me of the alpha and omega in the Bible.

Could you point out where "God" factors into mathematics? And your "translation" of transcendental is way off base.

I think it would be a mistake to try to shoehorn God into mathematics. I suppose I'm trying to shoehorn mathematics into God?

Yep. And the difference is that a transcendental number is not algebraic; an algebraic number being a number that is the root of a polynomial with integer coefficients. Those square/cube/fourth roots are evidently algebraic, i.e., not transcendental.

Begin 19th C., Gauss (?) proved that algebraic numbers are exactly those numbers that can be constructed with ruler and compass.

That's many hundreds of years after the Bible was written.

Evidently, we know the exact values of algebraic numbers as we can construct them with ruler and compass. As to pi, this question gets philosophical into "what is to know?" There's a slew of formulae which calculate pi, we can calculate with that up to arbitrary precision, so I'd say we know the exact value of pi.

Again, I'm not a mathematician (nor a mathematical historian), but it looks like the modern idea of Pi was built on the Biblical passage. It hardly seems fair to go back and then find flaw using that very same modern perspective. I'm not saying you were doing this, but someone was, upthread.

SezMe
8th January 2012, 12:35 AM
What device is most likely associated with an engineer?

Yea, slide rule.
http://forums.randi.org/imagehosting/19574f09552d5d25b.jpg (http://forums.randi.org/vbimghost.php?do=displayimg&imgid=24939)

:)

SezMe
8th January 2012, 12:43 AM
Again, I'm not a mathematician (nor a mathematical historian), but it looks like the modern idea of Pi was built on the Biblical passage.
Nope. I suggest this book (http://www.amazon.com/History-Pi-Petr-Beckmann/dp/0312381859/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326012062&sr=1-4) to you. It is a fascinating read.

marplots
8th January 2012, 01:42 AM
Nope. I suggest this book (http://www.amazon.com/History-Pi-Petr-Beckmann/dp/0312381859/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326012062&sr=1-4) to you. It is a fascinating read.

Yes, I have run across it. I didn't mean to imply that Pi was invented by the ancient people in the Bible, I meant to say that modern ideas have built on those earlier ones.

SezMe
8th January 2012, 01:50 AM
Yes, I have run across it. I didn't mean to imply that Pi was invented by the ancient people in the Bible, I meant to say that modern ideas have built on those earlier ones.
Again, I don't think so. Don't run across it - read it. It is really an engaging book that belies the idea that a simple number could be so interesting.

Jack by the hedge
8th January 2012, 03:11 AM
catsmate1

Another amusing reply and a misquote of me to boot. I never said it was independent of units. In effect I stated that nomenclature about universal constants (e.g. ideal gas) is not bound to be restrictively translated to any particular system of measurement, such as the metric system. It’s sad, really, to see you compelled to misrepresent an opponent’s argument rather than actually address what he wrote. Perhaps some day you’ll become conversant enough with the subject so that we can discuss. In the meantime you’ll find “nomenclature” under “N” in your dictionary.

What you actually said is that a superficial similarity between a value your brother calculated (using some very unlikely guesswork) and a universal constant expressed in the metric system either represented a "freakish coincidence" or it revealed the hand of a "Common Designer". It was neither. It was just a normal, everyday, boring old coincidence. To ascribe it any greater significance is numerological claptrap.

catsmate1
8th January 2012, 04:01 AM
catsmate1

Another amusing reply and a misquote of me to boot. I never said it was independent of units. In effect I stated that nomenclature about universal constants (e.g. ideal gas) is not bound to be restrictively translated to any particular system of measurement, such as the metric system. It’s sad, really, to see you compelled to misrepresent an opponent’s argument rather than actually address what he wrote. Perhaps some day you’ll become conversant enough with the subject so that we can discuss. In the meantime you’ll find “nomenclature” under “N” in your dictionary.
Nope. No misrepresentation. Just you getting overexcited by a simple coincidental similarity between a number that your brother came up with by numerological silliness and the value of a physical constant in a particular system of units. No god needed or implied.
Or do you not even understand that idealizations of universal constants are independent of any particular system of measurement?You faith in you "god" must be very weak if you need to engage in this numerological nonsense to reinforce your faith.:rolleyes:

Dancing David
8th January 2012, 05:22 AM
Dancing David,

A sharp eye. My mistake in misquoting my brother on Albright. David used him to discuss the royal bath (not the sacred cubit), which he (my brother) suspects equaled the biblical bath.

Daniel Gracely, you ignored my actual question. Considering that the derivation of the sacred cubit you gave to totally specious. How can you defend it.

But then you are here to witness and not discuss the basis of your alleged claim.

Dancing David
8th January 2012, 05:24 AM
catsmate1

Another amusing reply and a misquote of me to boot. I never said it was independent of units. In effect I stated that nomenclature about universal constants (e.g. ideal gas) is not bound to be restrictively translated to any particular system of measurement, such as the metric system. It’s sad, really, to see you compelled to misrepresent an opponent’s argument rather than actually address what he wrote. Perhaps some day you’ll become conversant enough with the subject so that we can discuss. In the meantime you’ll find “nomenclature” under “N” in your dictionary.

And so how did Solomon choose the units at seal level and the temperature of the phase transition for water between solid and liquid?

It’s sad, really, to see you compelled to ignore and disregard an opponent’s argument rather than actually address what he wrote.

catsmate1
8th January 2012, 06:00 AM
And so how did Solomon choose the units at seal level and the temperature of the phase transition for water between solid and liquid?

It’s sad, really, to see you compelled to ignore and disregard an opponent’s argument rather than actually address what he wrote.
It's about all I've come to expect from god botherers when you ask them difficult questions or expose their ignorance.

marplots
8th January 2012, 11:35 AM
It seems like the problem brought up in the OP is a general one:
How to reconcile two truths. The first being a literal understanding of the Bible and the second, knowledge we hold true about the world around us.

There are a few ways to address the paradox, some of which have been mentioned.

1) My current understanding about the world is wrong or missing some key element -- fixing that would make the two compatible.

2) My understanding of the Bible is wrong.

3) Something is different (time, place, circumstance) between what the Bible says and what the modern world reveals.

4) What I take to be an accurate version of the Bible isn't.

5) They really are incompatible and Bible literalism is bogus.

A lot of the arguments about Bible literalism distill down to something on this list. In the OP, it seems like he's going for #2.

It's an interesting case because we take mathematics to be a universal and time-independent truth. Enduring truth has a certain power, power shared by other concepts -- it not only feels true, but feels as if it certainly had to always have been true. That has some strengths that other arguments lack.

marplots
8th January 2012, 11:44 AM
Yes, I have run across it. I didn't mean to imply that Pi was invented by the ancient people in the Bible, I meant to say that modern ideas have built on those earlier ones.

Again, I don't think so. Don't run across it - read it. It is really an engaging book that belies the idea that a simple number could be so interesting.

Alright I confess. There's a section in my local library (a pretty good library) with a series of such books. I've read one on Pi, e, and the golden ratio (the book might have just used "phi" in the title). They were quite good. But it's been many years and not much of any of them really stuck well in my head.

I'm not so much a fan of constants as I am of mathematicians. I love the human interest stories, although, again, they don't really "stick." Group theory and Abel? I've read the story, and the dying young and unknown was poignant... but ask me about group theory and all I could generate would be a shallow notion about shared properties across different, well circumscribed sets -- the real power of the method escapes me.

In no way would I claim to be anything other than an informed (and not all that well informed) laymen when it comes to mathematics.

CORed
8th January 2012, 11:55 AM
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:

I find the figure of 25" for a cubit to be a bit suspect. I always understood that a cubit represented the distance from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger. For me, that measures 17.75 inches. I'm 5' 6", on the small side for an adult male in modern times, but probably close to or even a little above average in Biblical times. Assuming that the measurement is about average for someone of my height, and that the "cubit" distance is proportional to height, a 25 inch cubit would imply a height of about 7' 9". I guess "There were giants in those days".

Either that or the figure of 25" was chosen because it is (very close to) 1/10,000,000 of the polar radius and "evidence" was cherry-picked to support that number.

ETA: I see from other posts ITT that the 25" figure for the "sacred cubit" was derived via some numerological silliness involving the Great Pyramid. Truly amazing.

CORed
8th January 2012, 12:08 PM
Numerological nonsense. You do realise, amongst this maze of pseudoscientific apologist gibberish, that (for example) the molar gas volume of 22.4 litres applies at 0°C and for a gas whose mass is expressed in grammes.:rolleyes:

So you're saying that you find the logic that that the value of an ancient unit of volume is (allegedly) equal to the molar gas volume in units that wouldn't be invented for a few thousand years, therefore God exists and everything in the Bible is true to be less than compelling?

Blasphemy! :)

ddt
8th January 2012, 12:11 PM
(Lindeman, 1882) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proof_that_%CF%80_is_transcendental#Transcendence_ of_e_and_.CF.80)

Pi is a constant, it doesn't change. It's the ratio between the diameter and the circumference of a circle in a Euclidean geometry, and that does not change with time.

Well, apparently it does, if you accept the modern version is different than the one calculated in the Bible.
Calculated by whom? Certainly not by people interested in mathematics, but by priests interested in theological matters and obviously not in the truth of what they wrote down.

If you ask a mathematician for the value of pi, you get an exact answer, in the form of one of the many infinite sums that yield pi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_formulae_involving_%CF%80). There's nothing incorrect about that.
I'm not a mathematician, but I did note that a lot of those expressions went from negative infinity to positive infinity. This reminds me of the alpha and omega in the Bible.
Non sequitur.

Could you point out where "God" factors into mathematics? And your "translation" of transcendental is way off base.

I think it would be a mistake to try to shoehorn God into mathematics. I suppose I'm trying to shoehorn mathematics into God?
I don't know, but you claimed that "transcendental" equals divine. It does not, it has a very exact mathematical meaning. And also outside mathematics (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/transcendental), it doesn't mean "divine".

Yep. And the difference is that a transcendental number is not algebraic; an algebraic number being a number that is the root of a polynomial with integer coefficients. Those square/cube/fourth roots are evidently algebraic, i.e., not transcendental.

Begin 19th C., Gauss (?) proved that algebraic numbers are exactly those numbers that can be constructed with ruler and compass.

That's many hundreds of years after the Bible was written.
So what? Mathematical truth is not dependent on when it is discovered. In Biblical times, pi wasn't constructible with ruler and compass either. This notion of constructibility featured heavily in Greek mathematics, btw.

Evidently, we know the exact values of algebraic numbers as we can construct them with ruler and compass. As to pi, this question gets philosophical into "what is to know?" There's a slew of formulae which calculate pi, we can calculate with that up to arbitrary precision, so I'd say we know the exact value of pi.

Again, I'm not a mathematician (nor a mathematical historian), but it looks like the modern idea of Pi was built on the Biblical passage. It hardly seems fair to go back and then find flaw using that very same modern perspective. I'm not saying you were doing this, but someone was, upthread.
It wasn't. The notion of pi already figured much earlier, in Egyptian and in Babylonian civilization, and was actually put to use in, e.g., engineering. Archimedes is also known for a fine approximation of pi, in a way that foreshadows Newton's and Leibniz's calculus.

This Bible passage has contributed absolutely nothing to our understanding of mathematics; on the contrary, it contributes to our understanding that the Bible is not the infallible word of God, but is written by fallible human beings utterly disinterested in math.

ddt
8th January 2012, 12:16 PM
Just a quick note: the skeptic argument on bats and birds is stupid. The Hebrew word for flying creatures, of course, includes bats and birds. So what? As far as bats and mammals? Not sure where that comes from but since the term "mammals" didn't exist then, looks like another semantic argument not based on reality.

Why then did YHWH, the omniscient and omnipotent God, take care that the language in which He chose to convey His message, had such concepts as "birds" and "mammals"? Chalk another one up for the whole shebang being a myth concocted by humans.

And do you have any evidence that the Hebrew word employed for "birds" actually meant "flying creatures" and not "birds"?

ddt
8th January 2012, 12:21 PM
It seems like the problem brought up in the OP is a general one:
How to reconcile two truths. The first being a literal understanding of the Bible and the second, knowledge we hold true about the world around us.

There are a few ways to address the paradox, some of which have been mentioned.

1) My current understanding about the world is wrong or missing some key element -- fixing that would make the two compatible.
No, mathematical truth is eternal, and actually not dependent on the world. You might argue that the world in times of Solomon was not Euclidean, good luck with that. :rolleyes:

2) My understanding of the Bible is wrong.
When you hold the Bible to be the literal truth conveyed by God, yes, very very wrong.

3) Something is different (time, place, circumstance) between what the Bible says and what the modern world reveals.
No.

4) What I take to be an accurate version of the Bible isn't.
Ever looked into how many variations there are in the various manuscripts? :rolleyes:

5) They really are incompatible and Bible literalism is bogus.
Yes.

It's an interesting case because we take mathematics to be a universal and time-independent truth. Enduring truth has a certain power, power shared by other concepts -- it not only feels true, but feels as if it certainly had to always have been true. That has some strengths that other arguments lack.
Mathematical truth is time-independent. You can't argue with that.

jimbob
8th January 2012, 12:22 PM
Yawn, on you for rhetorical spin.

Here we go your own quote
"Using the 3,000 baths measurement, he suspected the volumetric space for a single bath (the standard biblical unit of liquid measurement) might work out to 22.414 liters, the same as a molar volume of gas at standard temperature and pressure. (In fact, it works out to 22.4149 liters.) "

BTW 'might work out" does that mean what? I can pretend that it does?

Or I chose a value so that this would work out?

yawn indeed.

"standard temperature and pressure", so why did Solomon choose the "standard" temperature of the freezing point of water ? does god like the phase transition from liquid to solid of water for some reason? Why not blood or gold? Or the transition from liquid water to vapor?

Did Solomon build this thing in freezing temperatures?

double yawn?

What does "standard' mean in this case, not a 'universal' but an arbitrary standard chosen for convenience by a bunch of people.

Yawn2

I think it represents the number of sides of a 22.4-sided solid, which is a pretty bloody mystical solid.

But I'm glad Solomon decided to represent* a number that was only meaningful in SI units, and not old fashioned imperial units, as often used in the US.

*if you ignore the number of baseless logical steps that you to take get to this - I can't be bothered to count how many there are.

marplots
8th January 2012, 12:23 PM
(snipped most of an excellent post -- please read the full version)
This Bible passage has contributed absolutely nothing to our understanding of mathematics; on the contrary, it contributes to our understanding that the Bible is not the infallible word of God, but is written by fallible human beings utterly disinterested in math.

There's another point of view. That the Bible is a work inspired, but not directly authored, word-for-word by God. In other words, filtered through the brains of humans who wrote it down. It would necessarily be limited in scope to the ideas and concepts held by the people writing it. This stance is similar to what you describe, but still allows for divine input.

dafydd
8th January 2012, 12:29 PM
There's another point of view. That the Bible is a work inspired, but not directly authored, word-for-word by God. In other words, filtered through the brains of humans who wrote it down. It would necessarily be limited in scope to the ideas and concepts held by the people writing it. This stance is similar to what you describe, but still allows for divine input.

in other words, an excuse.

jimbob
8th January 2012, 12:39 PM
Just a quick note: the skeptic argument on bats and birds is stupid. The Hebrew word for flying creatures, of course, includes bats and birds. So what? As far as bats and mammals? Not sure where that comes from but since the term "mammals" didn't exist then, looks like another semantic argument not based on reality.

Why then did YHWH, the omniscient and omnipotent God, take care that the language in which He chose to convey His message, had such concepts as "birds" and "mammals"? Chalk another one up for the whole shebang being a myth concocted by humans.

And do you have any evidence that the Hebrew word employed for "birds" actually meant "flying creatures" and not "birds"?

Of course the bit about four legged locusts (http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/lev/11.html#23) is less ambiguously wrong.

Leviticus

11:20 All fowls that creep, going upon all four, shall be an abomination unto you.
11:21 Yet these may ye eat of every flying creeping thing that goeth upon all four, which have legs above their feet, to leap withal upon the earth;
11:22 Even these of them ye may eat; the locust after his kind, and the bald locust after his kind, and the beetle after his kind, and the grasshopper after his kind.

ETA: I can accept that people might call "large flying animals" "birds", "but goeth on all four" to describe a six-legged animal really is a bit odd.

marplots
8th January 2012, 12:41 PM
(cut another excellent rebuttal to get to this single point)
No, mathematical truth is eternal, and actually not dependent on the world. You might argue that the world in times of Solomon was not Euclidean, good luck with that. :rolleyes:

I can think of a couple of things we adopted that could have gone some other way -- no doubt, if you are trained in mathematics, you can think of others.

The use of zero and place value for digits.
The idea of negative numbers and the convention that a negative times a negative is a positive (I'm not saying the convention isn't consistent or irrational, just that it was adopted, not driven directly by anything else.)
The, very useful, i.

The latter is probably best described as driven by outside influences and made necessary by discoveries in physics (so I have read).

The problem with concepts being eternally true is that this only applies in the context of mental games. As soon as you export them to the outside world, they are subject to all the taint that comes from experiment and whether something is so or not. Certainly we could construct examples of just such truths -- mathematics is very rich in spinning off wonderful, but imaginary objects.

If this context problem were not real, then mathematics would be authored solely by experiments and observations. But it would also be less pure and not much of a creative act.

Finally, to say that the mental game is true doesn't tell you which as yet, unproven conjecture is true and whether we've made an error somewhere. The discipline may generate eternal truth (in one form) but the disciples don't always.

(I forgot what I was arguing about, but it's fascinating anyhow.)

ddt
8th January 2012, 12:43 PM
There's another point of view. That the Bible is a work inspired, but not directly authored, word-for-word by God. In other words, filtered through the brains of humans who wrote it down. It would necessarily be limited in scope to the ideas and concepts held by the people writing it. This stance is similar to what you describe, but still allows for divine input.

I'll play along with that.

Why did God then choose a bunch of bloody idiots to write down His ideas? Why didn't he choose the much more advanced Egyptians or Babylonians, who actually had a grasp of, e.g., math?

Another case in point of that is that none of this has been preserved. While we have scores of Egyptian papyri and Babylonian clay tablets, only very tiny fragments of the Hebrew Bible have been preserved; the oldest text we know is actually the Septuagint, the Greek translation made in Ptolemeian Egypt.

marplots
8th January 2012, 12:44 PM
There's another point of view. That the Bible is a work inspired, but not directly authored, word-for-word by God. In other words, filtered through the brains of humans who wrote it down. It would necessarily be limited in scope to the ideas and concepts held by the people writing it. This stance is similar to what you describe, but still allows for divine input.

in other words, an excuse.

Got a better one? I'm all ears.

dafydd
8th January 2012, 12:46 PM
Got a better one? I'm all ears.

I don't need an excuse for the bible being a farrago of nonsense. I'm an atheist.

marplots
8th January 2012, 12:54 PM
I'll play along with that.

Why did God then choose a bunch of bloody idiots to write down His ideas? Why didn't he choose the much more advanced Egyptians or Babylonians, who actually had a grasp of, e.g., math?

Another case in point of that is that none of this has been preserved. While we have scores of Egyptian papyri and Babylonian clay tablets, only very tiny fragments of the Hebrew Bible have been preserved; the oldest text we know is actually the Septuagint, the Greek translation made in Ptolemeian Egypt.

It's even worse from where I sit. I have a King James version, authored circa 1611 (and modified to make it readable since then).

The exercise is to try and figure out how to rationalize the apparent conflicts between what I read in that book and what I know to be true about the world from other sources. It's not an easy task.

Premises:
1) The Bible is, considering translation problems, the literal truth.
2) Things I know about the world are, considering translation problems, true as well.

Exercise: Create a framework where those two statements aren't conflicting.

All the explanations only make sense if the two premises are accepted as givens. If the axioms are flawed, there's no fun in it. Playtime is over.

marplots
8th January 2012, 12:55 PM
I don't need an excuse for the bible being a farrago of nonsense. I'm an atheist.

Me too, but I can still think about things I disagree with. And I don't see why the Bible should be hand-waved away out of spite or because it reaches a poor conclusion. This is certainly a hugely important historical document/movement/enterprise, isn't it? A lot of man hours went into it and continue to do so. It's not like we are discussing some odd bit of 12th century weaving technique. This is a book that continues to have an impact.

Lowpro
8th January 2012, 12:56 PM
http://forums.randi.org/imagehosting/19574f09552d5d25b.jpg (http://forums.randi.org/vbimghost.php?do=displayimg&imgid=24939)

:)

I actually intended to follow this up with a picture of a sentry gun from Team Fortress 2 but that may be a little too esoteric here...

Complexity
8th January 2012, 01:18 PM
Well, apparently it does, if you accept the modern version is different than the one calculated in the Bible.

I'm not a mathematician, but I did note that a lot of those expressions went from negative infinity to positive infinity. This reminds me of the alpha and omega in the Bible.

I think it would be a mistake to try to shoehorn God into mathematics. I suppose I'm trying to shoehorn mathematics into God?

That's many hundreds of years after the Bible was written.

Again, I'm not a mathematician (nor a mathematical historian), but it looks like the modern idea of Pi was built on the Biblical passage. It hardly seems fair to go back and then find flaw using that very same modern perspective. I'm not saying you were doing this, but someone was, upthread.

It is difficult to be as consistently wrong as you are.

I'd congratulate you if I thought you'd achieved something.

Complexity
8th January 2012, 01:20 PM
It seems like the problem brought up in the OP is a general one:
How to reconcile two truths. The first being a literal understanding of the Bible and the second, knowledge we hold true about the world around us.

A literal understanding of the bible has nothing to do with truth.

There is no problem here.

Complexity
8th January 2012, 01:25 PM
It's even worse from where I sit. I have a King James version, authored circa 1611 (and modified to make it readable since then).

The exercise is to try and figure out how to rationalize the apparent conflicts between what I read in that book and what I know to be true about the world from other sources. It's not an easy task.

Premises:
1) The Bible is, considering translation problems, the literal truth.
2) Things I know about the world are, considering translation problems, true as well.

Exercise: Create a framework where those two statements aren't conflicting.

All the explanations only make sense if the two premises are accepted as givens. If the axioms are flawed, there's no fun in it. Playtime is over.

The first of your premisses is false.

The second of your premisses is sloppily stated and therefore of no value.

The axioms of your system are flawed, and nothing of value can be derived from the system.

Playtime is over.

Time to grow up.

Complexity
8th January 2012, 01:28 PM
Me too, but I can still think about things I disagree with. And I don't see why the Bible should be hand-waved away out of spite or because it reaches a poor conclusion. This is certainly a hugely important historical document/movement/enterprise, isn't it? A lot of man hours went into it and continue to do so. It's not like we are discussing some odd bit of 12th century weaving technique. This is a book that continues to have an impact.

Very negative impact.

Throw the damned thing away and read some good books.

You would especially benefit from reading some good science books.

TubbaBlubba
8th January 2012, 01:51 PM
Most square/cube/fourth/etc. roots are irrational.

Given that the distribution of perfect squares is logarithmic, you could even say almost all.

catsmate1
8th January 2012, 01:54 PM
I find the figure of 25" for a cubit to be a bit suspect. I always understood that a cubit represented the distance from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger. For me, that measures 17.75 inches. I'm 5' 6", on the small side for an adult male in modern times, but probably close to or even a little above average in Biblical times. Assuming that the measurement is about average for someone of my height, and that the "cubit" distance is proportional to height, a 25 inch cubit would imply a height of about 7' 9". I guess "There were giants in those days".

Either that or the figure of 25" was chosen because it is (very close to) 1/10,000,000 of the polar radius and "evidence" was cherry-picked to support that number.

ETA: I see from other posts ITT that the 25" figure for the "sacred cubit" was derived via some numerological silliness involving the Great Pyramid. Truly amazing.
Yep, people will go a looooooong way to try and justify their beliefs.

So you're saying that you find the logic that that the value of an ancient unit of volume is (allegedly) equal to the molar gas volume in units that wouldn't be invented for a few thousand years, therefore God exists and everything in the Bible is true to be less than compelling?

Blasphemy! :)
Sorry.:) I'm just a hard headed realist.

Vorpal
8th January 2012, 01:54 PM
This is why Pi is referred to as a transcendental, or divine number. Only God can know the whole thing. Once again, the Bible triumphs over all critics.
Please tell me honestly, now... are you trolling?

Begin 19th C., Gauss (?) proved that algebraic numbers are exactly those numbers that can be constructed with ruler and compass.
...
So what? Mathematical truth is not dependent on when it is discovered. In Biblical times, pi wasn't constructible with ruler and compass either. This notion of constructibility featured heavily in Greek mathematics, btw.
Nitpick: All constructible numbers are algebraic, but only algebraic numbers with minimal polynomial over rationals of degree a power of 2 are constructible.

catsmate1
8th January 2012, 01:56 PM
Alright I confess. There's a section in my local library (a pretty good library) with a series of such books. I've read one on Pi, e, and the golden ratio (the book might have just used "phi" in the title). They were quite good. But it's been many years and not much of any of them really stuck well in my head.
Well phi is used for the Golden Ratio; Φ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phi)

I'm not so much a fan of constants as I am of mathematicians. I love the human interest stories, although, again, they don't really "stick." Group theory and Abel? I've read the story, and the dying young and unknown was poignant... but ask me about group theory and all I could generate would be a shallow notion about shared properties across different, well circumscribed sets -- the real power of the method escapes me.

Mathematicians are, in my limited experience, odd. Even more so than physicists or other scientists. Them seem to be just a little out-of-phase with the world inhabited by the rest of us. But very interesting people.

Complexity
8th January 2012, 02:00 PM
Mathematicians are, in my limited experience, odd. Even more so than physicists or other scientists. Them seem to be just a little out-of-phase with the world inhabited by the rest of us. But very interesting people.

Have you seen the world the rest of you inhabit?

I want as little to do with that possible.

Consider me very much out of phase.

TubbaBlubba
8th January 2012, 02:08 PM
I find the figure of 25" for a cubit to be a bit suspect. I always understood that a cubit represented the distance from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger. For me, that measures 17.75 inches. I'm 5' 6", on the small side for an adult male in modern times, but probably close to or even a little above average in Biblical times. Assuming that the measurement is about average for someone of my height, and that the "cubit" distance is proportional to height, a 25 inch cubit would imply a height of about 7' 9". I guess "There were giants in those days".

Either that or the figure of 25" was chosen because it is (very close to) 1/10,000,000 of the polar radius and "evidence" was cherry-picked to support that number.

ETA: I see from other posts ITT that the 25" figure for the "sacred cubit" was derived via some numerological silliness involving the Great Pyramid. Truly amazing.

Yep, the Biblical cubit appears to have been somewhere between 18 and 22 inches.

25 inches would mean that even the short version (the most likely accurate one) of Goliath (four and a half cubit) was 2.87, while the tall one at six and a half cubit would be 4.14. Giants indeed. (The short version with the more likely value of cubit would put his height at a reasonable just short of two meters, which would be truly imposing in those days)

marplots
8th January 2012, 03:15 PM
This is why Pi is referred to as a transcendental, or divine number. Only God can know the whole thing. Once again, the Bible triumphs over all critics.

Please tell me honestly, now... are you trolling?

Good eye. That one was a bit over the top. It sounded so authentically "believer" though -- I couldn't abandon the voice and was compelled to use it. So, yeah, I was trolling there.

marplots
8th January 2012, 03:29 PM
The exercise is to try and figure out how to rationalize the apparent conflicts between what I read in that book and what I know to be true about the world from other sources. It's not an easy task.

Premises:
1) The Bible is, considering translation problems, the literal truth.
2) Things I know about the world are, considering translation problems, true as well.

Exercise: Create a framework where those two statements aren't conflicting.

All the explanations only make sense if the two premises are accepted as givens. If the axioms are flawed, there's no fun in it. Playtime is over.

The first of your premisses is false.

The second of your premisses is sloppily stated and therefore of no value.

The axioms of your system are flawed, and nothing of value can be derived from the system.

Playtime is over.

Time to grow up.

Nicely stated. But not fun at all.
The value comes in the form of the required mental gymnastics, not any solid or reliable conclusions. No paper will be written because of it and no strongly felt opinions changed.

Growing up is fine for mortgages and voting. Not so much for exuberance and enjoyment.

Should I go with Nietzsche or Malcolm X? Why not both?

"The true man want's two things: danger and play." -- Nietzsche
“A wise man can play the part of a clown, but a clown can't play the part of a wise man.”
― Malcolm X

The one I like most I can't cite (and may be misremembering): "Man is most truly his authentic self when at play."

marplots
8th January 2012, 09:07 PM
Complexity,
I found a cool clip of Bertram Russell making your point eloquently:

Daniel Gracely
18th January 2012, 06:58 PM
Jack by the hedge,

The translating of one value to another measuring system does not calculate to a different value, but only to a different number. To say that one inch equals .0254 meters is not to have calculated to a different value, but only to have expressed the same value with a different number in a different measuring system.

Daniel Gracely
18th January 2012, 06:59 PM
Dancing David,
You ask why Solomon would have chosen water instead of blood or gold, and water’s freezing point instead of its evaporation point, etc.

That’s a fine question. Have you in the same rhetorical tone asked it of the scientists you so admire? For observe how they have found water too common a substance, and its freezing point too obvious a measuring break, not to have found a natural use for it.

Furthermore, I never said Solomon “chose” anything. Neither my brother nor I believe Solomon or the Israelites ever discovered the ideal gas law (about which obviously they had no idea). We merely believe they were in possession of it because of a divine measurement given to them. In Solomon’s case in came through his father, David, to whom the Bible says God gave the construction pattern for artifacts pertaining to the Temple. A similar thing happened to Moses, in the design of the Tabernacle, and to Ezekiel, in measuring a future City.

I personally became interested in Solomon’s Sea while studying the prophecy of Daniel which predicts the Anointed Governor’s (Messiah’s) death after 69 weeks. An atheist directed me to Chris Sandoval’s claim (in his book, The Failure of Daniel’s Prophecies) that Daniel’s prophecy should not be read with “micrometer” precision, but that it was like Solomon’s Sea, whose measurements were rounded-off. IMO Sandoval’s argument (re: the Sea) can no longer be sustained on a mathematical/scientific basis, but only on the a priori assumption that there is no God, and therefore no divine instruction possible. In fact, despite Sandoval’s arguments (some of which are correct) against Prof. Harold Hoehner, a Christian Dispensationalist, a careful study of Daniel’s prophecy shows that biblical and extra-biblical evidences strongly support Dan. 9:25-26a. As it turns out, Hoehner was a month off in predicting the Messiah’s death, in part because he was either ignorant of, or failed to take seriously the 14 instances of when 5th century BC Jews at Elephantine reckoned the 1st of Nisan (the first month in the Hebrew calendar). Hoehner also made a mistake regarding the Julian Calendar (as Sandoval points out).

Daniel Gracely
18th January 2012, 07:01 PM
Catsmate1

Is this the best you can do with formatting your ideas? Are you so unoriginal as to have to borrow the form of your opponent’s writing, due to an inability to write in simple paragraph or brief essay form? It’s indeed amusing to watch your codependency, as with missionary zeal you pant for the periods ending my sentences to cue your knee-jerk comments, imagining your sound bites will turn an opponent’s points into so much ‘disjecta membra’. So derivative an approach. And so typical of the commentator who hopes his barrage of criticisms will intimidate the recipient, enough at least to hide the commentator’s ignorance of the subject. Hence your apparent parroting of mentors and all this chirping over the metric system, while still failing to understand that a “mole” of gas only equals 12 grams of carbon because of an artificial contrivance that redefined the gram for the occasion.

Anyway, your devotion to what you regard as an absolute frame of reference against which all other comparisons either pale or are nonsensical even in idea, has obviously inspired religious-like devotion in you. Well, at least we now know what one of your gods is.

At any rate, if you wish to fan these new-found religious feelings, I suggest a 4th or 5th grade grammar book. Just skip the part about how to write paragraphs, and learn instead to identify the ends of clauses. This way you won’t have to wait for all those periods.

Daniel Gracely
18th January 2012, 07:04 PM
MY BROTHER DAVID WRITES:
My brother has been taking a lot of heat for relaying some information about some calculations I did more than thirty years ago. I admire his willingness to walk into a lion’s den of controversy, which is something I really didn’t care to do, but at this point it may be helpful to expand upon what he has been saying, and submit some basic calculations which any serious-minded individual should be able to follow.

My 12th grade chemistry teacher said many years ago “You can’t put God in a test tube,” and for the most part I agree with that. But when it comes to the Biblical passages concerning King Solomon’s Sea, this is one of those times we can, in a manner of speaking, do just that. So let me begin with a brief synopsis concerning the puzzling questions that have swirled around this enigmatic brazen vessel in King Solomon’s Temple.

2. Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about. 3. And under it was the similitude of oxen, which did compass it round about: ten in a cubit, compassing the sea round about. Two rows of oxen were cast, when it was cast. 4. It stood upon twelve oxen, three looking toward the north, and three looking toward the west, and three looking toward the south, and three looking toward the east: and the sea was set above upon them, and all their hinder parts were inward. 5. And the thickness of it was an handbreadth, and the brim of it like the work of the brim of a cup, with flowers of lilies; and it received and held three thousand baths.

Many scientists believe this passage lacks scientific integrity because the Bible is saying the value of pi is three, since 30 cubits divided by 10 cubits is three. Of course, the true value of pi (rounded off to eight significant figures) is 3.1415927. Another alleged discrepancy is that I Kings 7:23-26 states that the large basin had 2,000, not 3,000 baths in it. Obviously, both values cannot be right.

Before evaluating these problems, I believe it is helpful to be aware of the history behind the search for the length of the Biblical cubit by scientists of the past.

Sir Isaac Newton was the first scientist in modern times to make an estimate of the cubit. He was led to search for the length of the sacred cubit because his initial calculations on gravity were not working out right, and he suspected that the radius of the earth he was using as estimated by the ancient Greek, Eratosthenes, was incorrect. Eratosthenes had made the statement that 210,000 Egyptian cubits was equal to a degree of arc along a great circle of the earth. Newton believed he might derive a more accurate value for the radius of the earth by finding out the true length of the Egyptian cubit, through a study of the dimensions of the Great Pyramid. He concluded that the Great Pyramid was built on the basis of two cubits, one which he called a profane cubit, the other a sacred cubit. He thought that the sacred cubit (which he estimated at somewhere from 24.8 to 25.02 inches) was the same cubit used in the building of the Biblical Tabernacle and Temple. He finally settled on a value for the sacred cubit of 24.88 inches and wrote up his analysis in a rare but important monograph.

Many years later in 1859, John Taylor, a member of the Royal Society of London, submitted a thesis to his colleagues that the Great Pyramid had been built by Divine decree, much like the Bible says Noah’s ark was, and had been built on the basis of a cubit of 25.025 inches. This he believed was the sacred Biblical cubit. Taylor also declared from his study of the Great Pyramid that this 25.025 inch cubit had a scientific value equal to 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius. Peter Tompkins, writing in his book, Secrets of the Great Pyramid comments on Taylor’s work:

“To Taylor, the creation of Adam had occurred in 4000 BC and the Flood in 2400 BC. As might be expected, Taylor, who had been known as a benign and dignified old gentleman, had a hard time convincing his quiet Victorian contemporaries of such wild and revolutionary theories, especially as they were just then being rocked by Darwin's theory of the descent of man. A paper on the Pyramid which he presented to the prestigious Royal Society was rejected with the suggestion that such a paper might be more appropriate for the Society of Antiquarians.”

There was only one member of the Royal Society who took Taylor’s study seriously—Piazzi Smyth, the Astronomer Royal of Scotland. He petitioned the Society for funds to go to Egypt to check out Taylor’s ideas. The Society not only refused his request, but even returned part of their government grant with the explanation that there was no project in need of it.

Undaunted, Smyth and his wife used their own funds and went to Egypt anyway. There he made very careful internal and external measurements of the Great Pyramid, and came to the conclusion that Taylor had been right.

Upon his return he informed the Royal Society of his findings. But by then, Taylor had died, and Smyth found no sympathetic ear when he tried to convince his colleagues of his conclusions. At the time, Smyth noted (emphasis mine):

"...The Council of the Royal Society absolutely refused to let my paper appear before an open meeting of the Society...I then sent in a conditional resignation of my fellowship, to be read in public together with the reasons why I so resigned...the Council held back those reasons, and merely announced that I had resigned... I therefore printed a pamphlet giving the whole case, and sent a copy to every member of the Society... The next annual general meeting of all the Fellows was held, and no more was made by anyone (so far as I have yet heard) to question the Council's proceedings, or vindicate the true size of the ancient Great Pyramid... In fact, the whole of the members have homologated everything done by the council in supporting one side, and suppressing the other side, of the Great Pyramid measures...”

Checking the internet shows that the controversy over the length of the cubit still survives, though, of course, it has faded alongside other topics related to biblical literacy. Still, the question remains whether these claims of Taylor and Smyth regarding the temple cubit equaling 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius, have any significance? The answer is yes, provided we integrate two other important pieces of information.

The first is that provided by the archeologist, William Foxwell Albright, who estimated that the Biblical bath was around 22 liters. He derived this value by comparing the broken top of a piece of pottery found at Lachish marked with the words “one royal bath” with jars that were complete. Other archeological estimates for the bath have since yielded values of 22.7, 22.8, 22.9 and 23.3 liters.

The second is that supplied by the first century Jewish historian Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews; VIII, III, v. 5):

“Solomon also cast a brazen sea, the figure of which was of a hemisphere...Now this sea contained three thousand baths.”

Now note that although the passage in I Kings says there was 2000 baths in the vessel, II Chronicles puts it at 3000. But the discrepancy is resolved when we realize 2000 baths is the water fill mark, while the 3000 baths expresses the Sea’s fullest capacity. And if we take 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius and substitute it into the dimensions given for Solomon’s Sea, and then divide by 3000 baths, the result is 22.4149 liters. Now, 22.414 liters equals one mole of an ideal gas at STP (standard temperature and pressure).

Note further that the Bible says the vessel was a handbreadth thick. Now, by definition a handbreadth is one-seventh of a sacred cubit (Ezekiel 40:5). Some Christians have supposed that the thickness of the vessel counters the criticism of skeptics that the Bible states pi = 3. That is, in trying to defend the Bible, many have thought the 10-cubit line was the outside diameter and the 30-cubit line the inside circumference at the top.

But a 10-cubit outer diameter and an inside 30-cubit circumference will calculate out to a wall thickness of slightly over .225 cubits, whereas it should be approximately .143 cubits (5 – 30/2pi). Thus the interpretation that the 30 cubit-line is the inside circumference and the 10-cubit line the outside diameter, does not match the Bible’s description.

But, conversely, one can properly take the 10 cubits to be the inside diameter, and that pi naturally occurs in a circle drawn latitudinally outward 5 cubits from a fixed center point. This means the 30 cubit line would be a measurement at a lower level. The mathematical and aesthetic significance of the 30-cubit line at a lower level has already been explained by my brother, who was the catalyst for the discovery that it represents the golden mean.

William Winston, who translated the writings of Josephus and also filled the chair at Cambridge after Newton, made the assumption that the 10 cubits was the inside diameter. But he doesn't explain why the 30-cubit line was not used in his calculations. Instead he used a 21 inch cubit and gave equal weight to both the 2000 and 3000 baths. Thus he gave two different estimates for the value of a bath.

Using a conventional hand held calculator, we can follow in his footsteps, but instead use 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius for the sacred cubit:

V = 2/3 pi R3 (Formula for the volume of a hemisphere)
(One inch = 2.54 centimeters)
(1000.028 cm3 = 1 liter)

1. The polar radius of the earth is 3949.89 miles (1957 International Geological Survey)
2. The polar radius of the earth multiplied by 5280 ft./mile is 20855419 ft.
3. The length of the sacred cubit is taken to be 1/10,000,000th of this.
4. This produces a value of 2.0855419 ft. for the sacred cubit.
5. This multiplied by 12 inches per foot is 25.026502 inches for the sacred cubit
6. This multiplied by 5 gives the radius of King Solomon's sea as 125.13251 inches
7. The radius multiplied by 2.54 centimeters per inch is 317.83657 centimeters
8. The radius multiplied by itself three times (i.e. cubed) is 32107875 cm3
9. (On many simple hand held calculators, hitting the times key once and the equals key twice will cube the number in the calculator’s display.)
10. The radius cubed multiplied by two-thirds is 21405250 cm3
11. This value multiplied by  is 67246577 cm3 (pi is 3.1415927 to 8 figures)
12. This total volume divided by three-thousand is 22415.525 cm3
13. One bath in liters is this value divided by 1000.028
14. Rounded off to 6 figures yields 22.4149 liters for one bath.

Again, this value for the bath is within the accepted range to the standard unit of volume in chemistry known as a molar volume, the amount of space taken up by Avogadro's number of ideal gas molecules at STP, and is usually given in chemistry textbooks as 22.414 liters. It is derived in a completely different way from the kinetic theory of gases.

Now it is necessary to examine the equation that describes the characteristics of an ideal gas, to see what else it reveals.

The ideal gas equation is often given as PV = nRT. What we are interested in here is what the volume of an ideal gas is at STP. Standard temperature is understood to be the freezing point of water in terms of how far above absolute zero the freezing point of water is, and standard pressure the average atmospheric pressure at sea level.

Now taking the ideal gas equation and dividing both sides by P yields the formula V= nRT/P. Now “R”, the universal gas constant, is the product of Avogadro’s constant and Boltzmann’s constant, and so the formula can also be written as V = n (No)kT/P. No is the designation for Avogadro’s number and k is the normal symbol for Boltzmann’s constant. T is the temperature in degrees Kelvin. The little lower case letter “n” is the number of moles of the ideal gas we are talking about, in this case one mole. Now the values and dimensions (i.e. the labels) for the various parts are as follows:
n = 1 mole
No = 6.022045 X 1023/mole
k = 1.380662 x 10-23 joules/Ko
T = 273.15oK
P = 101,325 nt/m2

It is also important to know the historical changes in the definition of the gram. For the atomic weights of the Periodic Table are now a deviation from the gram’s original definition, which was 1 cubic centimeter (1 cm3) of water at 4oC. Now, when it was found that none of the atomic weights of the elements were an exact integer of grams—something chemists would have preferred, since they naturally wished to avoid cumbersome fractions in their computations—chemists thought it expedient to have Avogadro’s number of atoms of oxygen arbitrarily set at exactly 16 grams. Note that this could not be done without abandoning the original definition of the gram. Thus 6.022045 x 1023 atoms of natural oxygen was given an atomic weight of exactly 16 grams and was called a mole of oxygen. But since oxygen had been artificially given the value of 16 grams per Avogadro’s number of atoms, all the atomic weights of the other elements had to have their atomic weights changed by the same percentage and in the same direction so as to keep all the ratios of each element’s atomic weight to every other element’s atomic weight the same as it was before the artificial change.

Around 1961 it was decided that another slight cooking of the books was necessary. Now it was decided to declare that Avogadro’s number of the most common isotope of carbon would have a slightly lower atomic weight, arbitrarily set at 12 grams exactly. In fact, the atomic weight of carbon was slightly higher. My chemistry text from college gives the formula: (old atomic weight) = (1.000043)(new atomic weight). It states that the adoption of the new atomic weight for the most prevalent form of carbon atoms at exactly 12 grams per Avogadro’s number of atoms necessitated a percentage change as shown by the above formula. So the statement, that Avogadro’s number of carbon equals 12 grams exactly, is by mere decree of chemists. It was never the result of carbon actually weighing that.

Now, how would all this playing around with the atomic weights affect the volume of one mole of an ideal gas at STP? It wouldn’t change it at all. But why? The answer is found in the first two terms of the ideal gas equation: The first term is “n” which equals the number of moles. Since we want to know the volume of one mole, let’s substitute the presently accepted value for one mole, namely “12 grams of carbon”. This first term thus has “12 grams of carbon” in the numerator, with the denominator understood to be one. Now, the second term is 6.022045 x 1023 / mole. So we substitute “12 grams of carbon” for the word “mole” in the denominator of the second term. When both terms are multiplied together, the numerator of the first term cancels out with the denominator of the second term. Thus the vaunted definition by Metric enthusiasts of “12 grams of carbon” for a mole completely cancels out, leaving just Avogadro’s number. Or should one use the previously adopted value of 16 grams of oxygen, the same result would occur. Or if one uses ounces or slugs or pounds or stones or carats in determining atomic weights, the ideal gas law is impervious to all of them, as well. That is, they would all disappear, leaving Avogadro’s number behind. So the surviving equation is the multiplying of Avogadro’s number by Boltzmann’s constant, times the absolute temperature in degrees Kelvin, divided by 101,325 nt/m2.

So then, when one puts in the actual dimensions for joules, which is (nt-m) (i.e. newtons times meters), all the labels for the remaining numbers in the ideal gas equation cancel out, leaving m3 (cubic meters )behind, the volume of the ideal gas. When all the numbers in the numerator are multiplied together and then divided by the denominator, the result is .022413824 cubic meters. This is the same as 22413.824 cubic centimeters, because there are 100 x 100 x 100 cubic centimeters in a cubic meter which moves the decimal point over 6 places. Finally, 22413.824 cubic centimeters is divided by 1000.028 cm3 per liter giving 22.41319243 liters for one mole of an ideal gas at STP (experimental error puts range from 22. 410 to 22. 416 liters).

Unfortunately, many skeptics today remain under the illusion that a mole of an ideal gas at STP is calculable only in the metric system. But, in fact, the equation for an ideal gas can be cast into any system of weights and measures. For example, in the system that uses feet, pounds, and degrees Fahrenheit, the equation would be:

V = (1mole)(6.022045 x 1023/mole)(5.657699x10-24 ft-lbs/Fo) (Fo+459.67) divided by (2116.345 lbs./ft2)

Putting in 32 degrees Fahrenheit for the freezing point of water and solving the above equation gives .791536741 cubic feet for a molar volume. Multiplying that result by 1728 in3/ft3 and then multiplying that by (2.54 cm)3/in3 yields 22413.824 cubic centimeters for a molar volume, as was calculated with the metric system above. The value for Boltzmann’s constant has to be compatible with the size of the degree of temperature used. This is true for any system that might be devised.

A similar thing would have needed to be done in the metric system if Celsius had decided to divide the thermal distance between the freezing and boiling points of water into an interval of 200 degrees instead of 100 degrees. In that case the formula in the metric system for an ideal gas would have had half the numerical value for Boltzmann’s constant and twice as many Kelvin degrees for the freezing point of water. The product of these two numbers would still give the same total amount of energy input needed to inflate Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules from a zero volume to 22.414 liters.

In the equation using the English units of energy called foot-pounds, the total amount of foot-pounds needed to inflate Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules from a zero volume to .791536741 cubic feet is the same amount of energy that the metric system gives in its units of measurement for energy called joules.

Again, unfortunately, a whole fiction has been devised to persuade people of the necessity of the metric system to express a molar volume. This subtle delusion seems to be held by the most vocal skeptics. Yet I don’t honestly believe they are deliberately trying to be deceitful. Still, because I believe them wrong, I felt it necessary to show they are self-deceived, and a dangerous influence upon those who are unfamiliar with certain facts supported in the Bible.

Of further note is that at low enough temperatures all gases condense or solidify. But the ideal gas equation shows that Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules takes up no space at absolute zero. Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules only takes up space as defined by the temperature and pressure they are under. The molecules themselves are mere points that have no mass whatsoever. Thus, the argument that a molar volume of an ideal gas at STP cannot be determined unless the weight in grams of a mole of some real substance is known, is false, and shows a failure to examine the ideal gas equation carefully.

In conclusion it should be noted that ancient Israel would not have needed to know the scientific definitions of the bath and the cubit, to have had them incorporated into the artifacts of the Temple. All God would have needed to have done is to give someone a measured rod and tell him the length of the rod would be the standard unit of length called a cubit. Then He could tell them that the diameter of any hemisphere, when cubed and multiplied by three, would give the total volume of the hemisphere in baths (or ephahs), if they used cubits in measuring the diameter. In other words, He would not have needed to say something like:

“Oh, by the way, this rod is one ten-millionth of the earth's polar radius, and the bath is the space taken up by what some thousand years hence will be called Avogadro's number of ideal gas molecules at the freezing point of water and at normal atmospheric pressure. And when it is, it will be discovered by using a completely different system of weights and measures which will be claimed more scientific.”

No, He wouldn't have needed to have told them any such thing. He would merely have given them the simple formula above. Thus the Creator set up a measurement system that is much more in harmony with science and nature than has ever been devised by man.

Dancing David
18th January 2012, 07:10 PM
Dancing David,
You ask why Solomon would have chosen water instead of blood or gold, and water’s freezing point instead of its evaporation point, etc.

That’s a fine question. Have you in the same rhetorical tone asked it of the scientists you so admire? For observe how they have found water too common a substance, and its freezing point too obvious a measuring break, not to have found a natural use for it.

So the answer is no you don't have any reason for it.

It is just *poofo* and the same as an arbitrary convention. Which is like everything about that sacred cubit.

Found by making a way for the pyramid of Giza to relate to a british inch.

Furthermore, I never said Solomon “chose” anything. Neither my brother nor I believe Solomon or the Israelites ever discovered the ideal gas law (about which obviously they had no idea). We merely believe they were in possession of it because of a divine measurement given to them. In Solomon’s case in came through his father, David, to whom the Bible says God gave the construction pattern for artifacts pertaining to the Temple. A similar thing happened to Moses, in the design of the Tabernacle, and to Ezekiel, in measuring a future City.

Color me sceptical at such claims without evidence.

i suppose you did not read how one of your sources thought that teh Sea had a flat bottom, of so it isn't really the sources but the cherry picking?

So you use the sacred cubit, but can't explain why it has any import other than a bunch of crazy british people thought it was a good idea?

Not that it relates to say a cubit that Solomon would have used.

Color me amazed.

Dancing David
18th January 2012, 07:14 PM
MY BROTHER DAVID WRITES:
My brother has been taking a lot of heat for relaying some information about some calculations I did more than thirty years ago. I admire his willingness to walk into a lion’s den of controversy, which is something I really didn’t care to do, but at this point it may be helpful to expand upon what he has been saying, and submit some basic calculations which any serious-minded individual should be able to follow.

My 12th grade chemistry teacher said many years ago “You can’t put God in a test tube,” and for the most part I agree with that. But when it comes to the Biblical passages concerning King Solomon’s Sea, this is one of those times we can, in a manner of speaking, do just that. So let me begin with a brief synopsis concerning the puzzling questions that have swirled around this enigmatic brazen vessel in King Solomon’s Temple.

2. Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about. 3. And under it was the similitude of oxen, which did compass it round about: ten in a cubit, compassing the sea round about. Two rows of oxen were cast, when it was cast. 4. It stood upon twelve oxen, three looking toward the north, and three looking toward the west, and three looking toward the south, and three looking toward the east: and the sea was set above upon them, and all their hinder parts were inward. 5. And the thickness of it was an handbreadth, and the brim of it like the work of the brim of a cup, with flowers of lilies; and it received and held three thousand baths.

Many scientists believe this passage lacks scientific integrity because the Bible is saying the value of pi is three, since 30 cubits divided by 10 cubits is three. Of course, the true value of pi (rounded off to eight significant figures) is 3.1415927. Another alleged discrepancy is that I Kings 7:23-26 states that the large basin had 2,000, not 3,000 baths in it. Obviously, both values cannot be right.

Before evaluating these problems, I believe it is helpful to be aware of the history behind the search for the length of the Biblical cubit by scientists of the past.

Sir Isaac Newton was the first scientist in modern times to make an estimate of the cubit. He was led to search for the length of the sacred cubit because his initial calculations on gravity were not working out right, and he suspected that the radius of the earth he was using as estimated by the ancient Greek, Eratosthenes, was incorrect. Eratosthenes had made the statement that 210,000 Egyptian cubits was equal to a degree of arc along a great circle of the earth. Newton believed he might derive a more accurate value for the radius of the earth by finding out the true length of the Egyptian cubit, through a study of the dimensions of the Great Pyramid. He concluded that the Great Pyramid was built on the basis of two cubits, one which he called a profane cubit, the other a sacred cubit. He thought that the sacred cubit (which he estimated at somewhere from 24.8 to 25.02 inches) was the same cubit used in the building of the Biblical Tabernacle and Temple. He finally settled on a value for the sacred cubit of 24.88 inches and wrote up his analysis in a rare but important monograph.

Many years later in 1859, John Taylor, a member of the Royal Society of London, submitted a thesis to his colleagues that the Great Pyramid had been built by Divine decree, much like the Bible says Noah’s ark was, and had been built on the basis of a cubit of 25.025 inches. This he believed was the sacred Biblical cubit. Taylor also declared from his study of the Great Pyramid that this 25.025 inch cubit had a scientific value equal to 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius. Peter Tompkins, writing in his book, Secrets of the Great Pyramid comments on Taylor’s work:

“To Taylor, the creation of Adam had occurred in 4000 BC and the Flood in 2400 BC. As might be expected, Taylor, who had been known as a benign and dignified old gentleman, had a hard time convincing his quiet Victorian contemporaries of such wild and revolutionary theories, especially as they were just then being rocked by Darwin's theory of the descent of man. A paper on the Pyramid which he presented to the prestigious Royal Society was rejected with the suggestion that such a paper might be more appropriate for the Society of Antiquarians.”

There was only one member of the Royal Society who took Taylor’s study seriously—Piazzi Smyth, the Astronomer Royal of Scotland. He petitioned the Society for funds to go to Egypt to check out Taylor’s ideas. The Society not only refused his request, but even returned part of their government grant with the explanation that there was no project in need of it.

Undaunted, Smyth and his wife used their own funds and went to Egypt anyway. There he made very careful internal and external measurements of the Great Pyramid, and came to the conclusion that Taylor had been right.

Upon his return he informed the Royal Society of his findings. But by then, Taylor had died, and Smyth found no sympathetic ear when he tried to convince his colleagues of his conclusions. At the time, Smyth noted (emphasis mine):

"...The Council of the Royal Society absolutely refused to let my paper appear before an open meeting of the Society...I then sent in a conditional resignation of my fellowship, to be read in public together with the reasons why I so resigned...the Council held back those reasons, and merely announced that I had resigned... I therefore printed a pamphlet giving the whole case, and sent a copy to every member of the Society... The next annual general meeting of all the Fellows was held, and no more was made by anyone (so far as I have yet heard) to question the Council's proceedings, or vindicate the true size of the ancient Great Pyramid... In fact, the whole of the members have homologated everything done by the council in supporting one side, and suppressing the other side, of the Great Pyramid measures...”

Checking the internet shows that the controversy over the length of the cubit still survives, though, of course, it has faded alongside other topics related to biblical literacy. Still, the question remains whether these claims of Taylor and Smyth regarding the temple cubit equaling 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius, have any significance? The answer is yes, provided we integrate two other important pieces of information.

The first is that provided by the archeologist, William Foxwell Albright, who estimated that the Biblical bath was around 22 liters. He derived this value by comparing the broken top of a piece of pottery found at Lachish marked with the words “one royal bath” with jars that were complete. Other archeological estimates for the bath have since yielded values of 22.7, 22.8, 22.9 and 23.3 liters.

The second is that supplied by the first century Jewish historian Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews; VIII, III, v. 5):

“Solomon also cast a brazen sea, the figure of which was of a hemisphere...Now this sea contained three thousand baths.”

Now note that although the passage in I Kings says there was 2000 baths in the vessel, II Chronicles puts it at 3000. But the discrepancy is resolved when we realize 2000 baths is the water fill mark, while the 3000 baths expresses the Sea’s fullest capacity. And if we take 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius and substitute it into the dimensions given for Solomon’s Sea, and then divide by 3000 baths, the result is 22.4149 liters. Now, 22.414 liters equals one mole of an ideal gas at STP (standard temperature and pressure).

Note further that the Bible says the vessel was a handbreadth thick. Now, by definition a handbreadth is one-seventh of a sacred cubit (Ezekiel 40:5). Some Christians have supposed that the thickness of the vessel counters the criticism of skeptics that the Bible states pi = 3. That is, in trying to defend the Bible, many have thought the 10-cubit line was the outside diameter and the 30-cubit line the inside circumference at the top.

But a 10-cubit outer diameter and an inside 30-cubit circumference will calculate out to a wall thickness of slightly over .225 cubits, whereas it should be approximately .143 cubits (5 – 30/2pi). Thus the interpretation that the 30 cubit-line is the inside circumference and the 10-cubit line the outside diameter, does not match the Bible’s description.

But, conversely, one can properly take the 10 cubits to be the inside diameter, and that pi naturally occurs in a circle drawn latitudinally outward 5 cubits from a fixed center point. This means the 30 cubit line would be a measurement at a lower level. The mathematical and aesthetic significance of the 30-cubit line at a lower level has already been explained by my brother, who was the catalyst for the discovery that it represents the golden mean.

William Winston, who translated the writings of Josephus and also filled the chair at Cambridge after Newton, made the assumption that the 10 cubits was the inside diameter. But he doesn't explain why the 30-cubit line was not used in his calculations. Instead he used a 21 inch cubit and gave equal weight to both the 2000 and 3000 baths. Thus he gave two different estimates for the value of a bath.

Using a conventional hand held calculator, we can follow in his footsteps, but instead use 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius for the sacred cubit:

V = 2/3 pi R3 (Formula for the volume of a hemisphere)
(One inch = 2.54 centimeters)
(1000.028 cm3 = 1 liter)

1. The polar radius of the earth is 3949.89 miles (1957 International Geological Survey)
2. The polar radius of the earth multiplied by 5280 ft./mile is 20855419 ft.
3. The length of the sacred cubit is taken to be 1/10,000,000th of this.
4. This produces a value of 2.0855419 ft. for the sacred cubit.
5. This multiplied by 12 inches per foot is 25.026502 inches for the sacred cubit
6. This multiplied by 5 gives the radius of King Solomon's sea as 125.13251 inches
7. The radius multiplied by 2.54 centimeters per inch is 317.83657 centimeters
8. The radius multiplied by itself three times (i.e. cubed) is 32107875 cm3
9. (On many simple hand held calculators, hitting the times key once and the equals key twice will cube the number in the calculator’s display.)
10. The radius cubed multiplied by two-thirds is 21405250 cm3
11. This value multiplied by  is 67246577 cm3 (pi is 3.1415927 to 8 figures)
12. This total volume divided by three-thousand is 22415.525 cm3
13. One bath in liters is this value divided by 1000.028
14. Rounded off to 6 figures yields 22.4149 liters for one bath.

Again, this value for the bath is within the accepted range to the standard unit of volume in chemistry known as a molar volume, the amount of space taken up by Avogadro's number of ideal gas molecules at STP, and is usually given in chemistry textbooks as 22.414 liters. It is derived in a completely different way from the kinetic theory of gases.

Now it is necessary to examine the equation that describes the characteristics of an ideal gas, to see what else it reveals.

The ideal gas equation is often given as PV = nRT. What we are interested in here is what the volume of an ideal gas is at STP. Standard temperature is understood to be the freezing point of water in terms of how far above absolute zero the freezing point of water is, and standard pressure the average atmospheric pressure at sea level.

Now taking the ideal gas equation and dividing both sides by P yields the formula V= nRT/P. Now “R”, the universal gas constant, is the product of Avogadro’s constant and Boltzmann’s constant, and so the formula can also be written as V = n (No)kT/P. No is the designation for Avogadro’s number and k is the normal symbol for Boltzmann’s constant. T is the temperature in degrees Kelvin. The little lower case letter “n” is the number of moles of the ideal gas we are talking about, in this case one mole. Now the values and dimensions (i.e. the labels) for the various parts are as follows:
n = 1 mole
No = 6.022045 X 1023/mole
k = 1.380662 x 10-23 joules/Ko
T = 273.15oK
P = 101,325 nt/m2

It is also important to know the historical changes in the definition of the gram. For the atomic weights of the Periodic Table are now a deviation from the gram’s original definition, which was 1 cubic centimeter (1 cm3) of water at 4oC. Now, when it was found that none of the atomic weights of the elements were an exact integer of grams—something chemists would have preferred, since they naturally wished to avoid cumbersome fractions in their computations—chemists thought it expedient to have Avogadro’s number of atoms of oxygen arbitrarily set at exactly 16 grams. Note that this could not be done without abandoning the original definition of the gram. Thus 6.022045 x 1023 atoms of natural oxygen was given an atomic weight of exactly 16 grams and was called a mole of oxygen. But since oxygen had been artificially given the value of 16 grams per Avogadro’s number of atoms, all the atomic weights of the other elements had to have their atomic weights changed by the same percentage and in the same direction so as to keep all the ratios of each element’s atomic weight to every other element’s atomic weight the same as it was before the artificial change.

Around 1961 it was decided that another slight cooking of the books was necessary. Now it was decided to declare that Avogadro’s number of the most common isotope of carbon would have a slightly lower atomic weight, arbitrarily set at 12 grams exactly. In fact, the atomic weight of carbon was slightly higher. My chemistry text from college gives the formula: (old atomic weight) = (1.000043)(new atomic weight). It states that the adoption of the new atomic weight for the most prevalent form of carbon atoms at exactly 12 grams per Avogadro’s number of atoms necessitated a percentage change as shown by the above formula. So the statement, that Avogadro’s number of carbon equals 12 grams exactly, is by mere decree of chemists. It was never the result of carbon actually weighing that.

Now, how would all this playing around with the atomic weights affect the volume of one mole of an ideal gas at STP? It wouldn’t change it at all. But why? The answer is found in the first two terms of the ideal gas equation: The first term is “n” which equals the number of moles. Since we want to know the volume of one mole, let’s substitute the presently accepted value for one mole, namely “12 grams of carbon”. This first term thus has “12 grams of carbon” in the numerator, with the denominator understood to be one. Now, the second term is 6.022045 x 1023 / mole. So we substitute “12 grams of carbon” for the word “mole” in the denominator of the second term. When both terms are multiplied together, the numerator of the first term cancels out with the denominator of the second term. Thus the vaunted definition by Metric enthusiasts of “12 grams of carbon” for a mole completely cancels out, leaving just Avogadro’s number. Or should one use the previously adopted value of 16 grams of oxygen, the same result would occur. Or if one uses ounces or slugs or pounds or stones or carats in determining atomic weights, the ideal gas law is impervious to all of them, as well. That is, they would all disappear, leaving Avogadro’s number behind. So the surviving equation is the multiplying of Avogadro’s number by Boltzmann’s constant, times the absolute temperature in degrees Kelvin, divided by 101,325 nt/m2.

So then, when one puts in the actual dimensions for joules, which is (nt-m) (i.e. newtons times meters), all the labels for the remaining numbers in the ideal gas equation cancel out, leaving m3 (cubic meters )behind, the volume of the ideal gas. When all the numbers in the numerator are multiplied together and then divided by the denominator, the result is .022413824 cubic meters. This is the same as 22413.824 cubic centimeters, because there are 100 x 100 x 100 cubic centimeters in a cubic meter which moves the decimal point over 6 places. Finally, 22413.824 cubic centimeters is divided by 1000.028 cm3 per liter giving 22.41319243 liters for one mole of an ideal gas at STP (experimental error puts range from 22. 410 to 22. 416 liters).

Unfortunately, many skeptics today remain under the illusion that a mole of an ideal gas at STP is calculable only in the metric system. But, in fact, the equation for an ideal gas can be cast into any system of weights and measures. For example, in the system that uses feet, pounds, and degrees Fahrenheit, the equation would be:

V = (1mole)(6.022045 x 1023/mole)(5.657699x10-24 ft-lbs/Fo) (Fo+459.67) divided by (2116.345 lbs./ft2)

Putting in 32 degrees Fahrenheit for the freezing point of water and solving the above equation gives .791536741 cubic feet for a molar volume. Multiplying that result by 1728 in3/ft3 and then multiplying that by (2.54 cm)3/in3 yields 22413.824 cubic centimeters for a molar volume, as was calculated with the metric system above. The value for Boltzmann’s constant has to be compatible with the size of the degree of temperature used. This is true for any system that might be devised.

A similar thing would have needed to be done in the metric system if Celsius had decided to divide the thermal distance between the freezing and boiling points of water into an interval of 200 degrees instead of 100 degrees. In that case the formula in the metric system for an ideal gas would have had half the numerical value for Boltzmann’s constant and twice as many Kelvin degrees for the freezing point of water. The product of these two numbers would still give the same total amount of energy input needed to inflate Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules from a zero volume to 22.414 liters.

In the equation using the English units of energy called foot-pounds, the total amount of foot-pounds needed to inflate Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules from a zero volume to .791536741 cubic feet is the same amount of energy that the metric system gives in its units of measurement for energy called joules.

Again, unfortunately, a whole fiction has been devised to persuade people of the necessity of the metric system to express a molar volume. This subtle delusion seems to be held by the most vocal skeptics. Yet I don’t honestly believe they are deliberately trying to be deceitful. Still, because I believe them wrong, I felt it necessary to show they are self-deceived, and a dangerous influence upon those who are unfamiliar with certain facts supported in the Bible.

Of further note is that at low enough temperatures all gases condense or solidify. But the ideal gas equation shows that Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules takes up no space at absolute zero. Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules only takes up space as defined by the temperature and pressure they are under. The molecules themselves are mere points that have no mass whatsoever. Thus, the argument that a molar volume of an ideal gas at STP cannot be determined unless the weight in grams of a mole of some real substance is known, is false, and shows a failure to examine the ideal gas equation carefully.

In conclusion it should be noted that ancient Israel would not have needed to know the scientific definitions of the bath and the cubit, to have had them incorporated into the artifacts of the Temple. All God would have needed to have done is to give someone a measured rod and tell him the length of the rod would be the standard unit of length called a cubit. Then He could tell them that the diameter of any hemisphere, when cubed and multiplied by three, would give the total volume of the hemisphere in baths (or ephahs), if they used cubits in measuring the diameter. In other words, He would not have needed to say something like:

“Oh, by the way, this rod is one ten-millionth of the earth's polar radius, and the bath is the space taken up by what some thousand years hence will be called Avogadro's number of ideal gas molecules at the freezing point of water and at normal atmospheric pressure. And when it is, it will be discovered by using a completely different system of weights and measures which will be claimed more scientific.”

No, He wouldn't have needed to have told them any such thing. He would merely have given them the simple formula above. Thus the Creator set up a measurement system that is much more in harmony with science and nature than has ever been devised by man.
Can you point to me where in that Wall of Text there is any verification that maybe someone like Solomon used the 25 in. cubit?

You know like something that was built by people around the time of Solomon, in the area of Solomon, that maybe gives something like this value?

Reality Check
18th January 2012, 07:35 PM
MY BROTHER DAVID WRITES:

2. Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about. ...

Many scientists believe this passage lacks scientific integrity because the Bible is saying the value of pi is three, since 30 cubits divided by 10 cubits is three. Of course, the true value of pi (rounded off to eight significant figures) is 3.1415927.
..wall of text snipped....
What you and your brother seem to be ignorant of is that pi is the ratio of the circumference of a circle to the diameter. The units that you measure it in do not matter. It does not matter how long a cubit is. So the screed about the length of a cubit was a waste of time.

So this verse is either

Stating that pi = 3 (yet another scientific error in the Bible) or
So imprecise (e.g "brim" may or may not mean the outside edge of the round molten sea, just how wide is a handsbreath? ) to be scientifically useless.

TubbaBlubba
19th January 2012, 01:40 AM
That’s a fine question. Have you in the same rhetorical tone asked it of the scientists you so admire? For observe how they have found water too common a substance, and its freezing point too obvious a measuring break, not to have found a natural use for it.
Are you asking why water was chosen for the Celsius scale?

First, "the scientists"? That was one man, a Swede named Anders Celsius. He chose water, I reckon, because of a few attributes;

1. High heat capacity, meaning it's easy to titrate it with heat until it's just boiling.
2. Easy to get a hold of.
3. Reasonably narrow range of transition
4. Extremely easy to make 0 degree C water - just mix ice and cold water.
5. The above mixture is very stable due to the phase change energy requirements.

marplots
19th January 2012, 03:41 AM

Who knows what God said and why He said it. He fibbed in Genesis, at least when I read the KJV. I don't see why we think He couldn't misinform His servants. That actually makes for a more interesting God.

catsmate1
19th January 2012, 11:45 AM
Catsmate1

Is this the best you can do with formatting your ideas? Are you so unoriginal as to have to borrow the form of your opponent’s writing, due to an inability to write in simple paragraph or brief essay form? It’s indeed amusing to watch your codependency, as with missionary zeal you pant for the periods ending my sentences to cue your knee-jerk comments, imagining your sound bites will turn an opponent’s points into so much ‘disjecta membra’. So derivative an approach. And so typical of the commentator who hopes his barrage of criticisms will intimidate the recipient, enough at least to hide the commentator’s ignorance of the subject. Hence your apparent parroting of mentors and all this chirping over the metric system, while still failing to understand that a “mole” of gas only equals 12 grams of carbon because of an artificial contrivance that redefined the gram for the occasion.

Anyway, your devotion to what you regard as an absolute frame of reference against which all other comparisons either pale or are nonsensical even in idea, has obviously inspired religious-like devotion in you. Well, at least we now know what one of your gods is.

At any rate, if you wish to fan these new-found religious feelings, I suggest a 4th or 5th grade grammar book. Just skip the part about how to write paragraphs, and learn instead to identify the ends of clauses. This way you won’t have to wait for all those periods.
So no actual answers just more attempts at evasion. :rolleyes:
I answered your numerological nonsense point by point and all you can respond with is inaccurate Latin tags and attempts at grammatical critique.
Rather pathetic.

MY BROTHER DAVID WRITES:
<much snippage of apologetic numerological rubbish>
Still no facts or evidence then? Just more disjointed ramblings, apologist silliness and evidence-free numerological inferences?
Oh well.

rwguinn
19th January 2012, 12:03 PM
It would be really, really hard to get the vlue of Pi() wrong
3 is within 5% of the actual value of Pi, and the ancients were highly capable of measuring things, so what's the big deal, here?

Kid Eager
19th January 2012, 03:01 PM
I'm still trying to figure out the significance of 10,000,000

CapelDodger
19th January 2012, 03:49 PM
I'm still trying to figure out the significance of 10,000,000

Enquiring minds do want to know.

I wonder how all this numerology would work out in hex? Or in duodecimal, which would have been so much easier to use. Just two more fingers and two more toes : was a little forethought too much to ask?

catsmate1
20th January 2012, 01:13 AM
I'm still trying to figure out the significance of 10,000,000
It may be related to the origin of the metre as one ten-millionth of the distance from the equator to the North Pole at sea level. Perhaps.
Who can tell?:rolleyes:

jimbob
20th January 2012, 08:30 AM
MY BROTHER DAVID WRITES:
My brother has been taking a lot of heat for relaying some information about some calculations I did more than thirty years ago. I admire his willingness to walk into a lion’s den of controversy, which is something I really didn’t care to do, but at this point it may be helpful to expand upon what he has been saying, and submit some basic calculations which any serious-minded individual should be able to follow.

My 12th grade chemistry teacher said many years ago “You can’t put God in a test tube,” and for the most part I agree with that. But when it comes to the Biblical passages concerning King Solomon’s Sea, this is one of those times we can, in a manner of speaking, do just that. So let me begin with a brief synopsis concerning the puzzling questions that have swirled around this enigmatic brazen vessel in King Solomon’s Temple.

2. Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about. 3. And under it was the similitude of oxen, which did compass it round about: ten in a cubit, compassing the sea round about. Two rows of oxen were cast, when it was cast. 4. It stood upon twelve oxen, three looking toward the north, and three looking toward the west, and three looking toward the south, and three looking toward the east: and the sea was set above upon them, and all their hinder parts were inward. 5. And the thickness of it was an handbreadth, and the brim of it like the work of the brim of a cup, with flowers of lilies; and it received and held three thousand baths.

Many scientists believe this passage lacks scientific integrity because the Bible is saying the value of pi is three, since 30 cubits divided by 10 cubits is three. Of course, the true value of pi (rounded off to eight significant figures) is 3.1415927. Another alleged discrepancy is that I Kings 7:23-26 states that the large basin had 2,000, not 3,000 baths in it. Obviously, both values cannot be right.

Before evaluating these problems, I believe it is helpful to be aware of the history behind the search for the length of the Biblical cubit by scientists of the past.

Sir Isaac Newton was the first scientist in modern times to make an estimate of the cubit. He was led to search for the length of the sacred cubit because his initial calculations on gravity were not working out right, and he suspected that the radius of the earth he was using as estimated by the ancient Greek, Eratosthenes, was incorrect. Eratosthenes had made the statement that 210,000 Egyptian cubits was equal to a degree of arc along a great circle of the earth. Newton believed he might derive a more accurate value for the radius of the earth by finding out the true length of the Egyptian cubit, through a study of the dimensions of the Great Pyramid. He concluded that the Great Pyramid was built on the basis of two cubits, one which he called a profane cubit, the other a sacred cubit. He thought that the sacred cubit (which he estimated at somewhere from 24.8 to 25.02 inches) was the same cubit used in the building of the Biblical Tabernacle and Temple. He finally settled on a value for the sacred cubit of 24.88 inches and wrote up his analysis in a rare but important monograph.

Many years later in 1859, John Taylor, a member of the Royal Society of London, submitted a thesis to his colleagues that the Great Pyramid had been built by Divine decree, much like the Bible says Noah’s ark was, and had been built on the basis of a cubit of 25.025 inches. This he believed was the sacred Biblical cubit. Taylor also declared from his study of the Great Pyramid that this 25.025 inch cubit had a scientific value equal to 1/10,000,000th of the earth’s polar radius. Peter Tompkins, writing in his book, Secrets of the Great Pyramid comments on Taylor’s work:

“To Taylor, the creation of Adam had occurred in 4000 BC and the Flood in 2400 BC. As might be expected, Taylor, who had been known as a benign and dignified old gentleman, had a hard time convincing his quiet Victorian contemporaries of such wild and revolutionary theories, especially as they were just then being rocked by Darwin's theory of the descent of man. A paper on the Pyramid which he presented to the prestigious Royal Society was rejected with the suggestion that such a paper might be more appropriate for the Society of Antiquarians.”

There was only one member of the Royal Society who took Taylor’s study seriously—Piazzi Smyth, the Astronomer Royal of Scotland. He petitioned the Society for funds to go to Egypt to check out Taylor’s ideas. The Society not only refused his request, but even returned part of their government grant with the explanation that there was no project in need of it.

Undaunted, Smyth and his wife used their own funds and went to Egypt anyway. There he made very careful internal and external measurements of the Great Pyramid, and came to the conclusion that Taylor had been right.

Upon his return he informed the Royal Society of his findings. But by then, Taylor had died, and Smyth found no sympathetic ear when he tried to convince his colleagues of his conclusions. At the time, Smyth noted (emphasis mine):

"...The Council of the Royal Society absolutely refused to let my paper appear before an open meeting of the Society...I then sent in a conditional resignation of my fellowship, to be read in public together with the reasons why I so resigned...the Council held back those reasons, and merely announced that I had resigned... I therefore printed a pamphlet giving the whole case, and sent a copy to every member of the Society... The next annual general meeting of all the Fellows was held, and no more was made by anyone (so far as I have yet heard) to question the Council's proceedings, or vindicate the true size of the ancient Great Pyramid... In fact, the whole of the members have homologated everything done by the council in supporting one side, and suppressing the other side, of the Great Pyramid measures...”

Checking the internet shows that the controversy over the length of the cubit still survives, though, of course, it has faded alongside other topics related to biblical literacy. Still, the question remains whether these claims of Taylor and Smyth regarding the temple cubit equaling 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius, have any significance? The answer is yes, provided we integrate two other important pieces of information.

The first is that provided by the archeologist, William Foxwell Albright, who estimated that the Biblical bath was around 22 liters. He derived this value by comparing the broken top of a piece of pottery found at Lachish marked with the words “one royal bath” with jars that were complete. Other archeological estimates for the bath have since yielded values of 22.7, 22.8, 22.9 and 23.3 liters.

The second is that supplied by the first century Jewish historian Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews; VIII, III, v. 5):

“Solomon also cast a brazen sea, the figure of which was of a hemisphere...Now this sea contained three thousand baths.”

Now note that although the passage in I Kings says there was 2000 baths in the vessel, II Chronicles puts it at 3000. But the discrepancy is resolved when we realize 2000 baths is the water fill mark, while the 3000 baths expresses the Sea’s fullest capacity. And if we take 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius and substitute it into the dimensions given for Solomon’s Sea, and then divide by 3000 baths, the result is 22.4149 liters. Now, 22.414 liters equals one mole of an ideal gas at STP (standard temperature and pressure).

Note further that the Bible says the vessel was a handbreadth thick. Now, by definition a handbreadth is one-seventh of a sacred cubit (Ezekiel 40:5). Some Christians have supposed that the thickness of the vessel counters the criticism of skeptics that the Bible states pi = 3. That is, in trying to defend the Bible, many have thought the 10-cubit line was the outside diameter and the 30-cubit line the inside circumference at the top.

But a 10-cubit outer diameter and an inside 30-cubit circumference will calculate out to a wall thickness of slightly over .225 cubits, whereas it should be approximately .143 cubits (5 – 30/2pi). Thus the interpretation that the 30 cubit-line is the inside circumference and the 10-cubit line the outside diameter, does not match the Bible’s description.

But, conversely, one can properly take the 10 cubits to be the inside diameter, and that pi naturally occurs in a circle drawn latitudinally outward 5 cubits from a fixed center point. This means the 30 cubit line would be a measurement at a lower level. The mathematical and aesthetic significance of the 30-cubit line at a lower level has already been explained by my brother, who was the catalyst for the discovery that it represents the golden mean.

William Winston, who translated the writings of Josephus and also filled the chair at Cambridge after Newton, made the assumption that the 10 cubits was the inside diameter. But he doesn't explain why the 30-cubit line was not used in his calculations. Instead he used a 21 inch cubit and gave equal weight to both the 2000 and 3000 baths. Thus he gave two different estimates for the value of a bath.

Using a conventional hand held calculator, we can follow in his footsteps, but instead use 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius for the sacred cubit:

V = 2/3 pi R3 (Formula for the volume of a hemisphere)
(One inch = 2.54 centimeters)
(1000.028 cm3 = 1 liter)

1. The polar radius of the earth is 3949.89 miles (1957 International Geological Survey)
2. The polar radius of the earth multiplied by 5280 ft./mile is 20855419 ft.
3. The length of the sacred cubit is taken to be 1/10,000,000th of this.
4. This produces a value of 2.0855419 ft. for the sacred cubit.
5. This multiplied by 12 inches per foot is 25.026502 inches for the sacred cubit
6. This multiplied by 5 gives the radius of King Solomon's sea as 125.13251 inches
7. The radius multiplied by 2.54 centimeters per inch is 317.83657 centimeters
8. The radius multiplied by itself three times (i.e. cubed) is 32107875 cm3
9. (On many simple hand held calculators, hitting the times key once and the equals key twice will cube the number in the calculator’s display.)
10. The radius cubed multiplied by two-thirds is 21405250 cm3
11. This value multiplied by  is 67246577 cm3 (pi is 3.1415927 to 8 figures)
12. This total volume divided by three-thousand is 22415.525 cm3
13. One bath in liters is this value divided by 1000.028
14. Rounded off to 6 figures yields 22.4149 liters for one bath.

Again, this value for the bath is within the accepted range to the standard unit of volume in chemistry known as a molar volume, the amount of space taken up by Avogadro's number of ideal gas molecules at STP, and is usually given in chemistry textbooks as 22.414 liters. It is derived in a completely different way from the kinetic theory of gases.

Now it is necessary to examine the equation that describes the characteristics of an ideal gas, to see what else it reveals.

The ideal gas equation is often given as PV = nRT. What we are interested in here is what the volume of an ideal gas is at STP. Standard temperature is understood to be the freezing point of water in terms of how far above absolute zero the freezing point of water is, and standard pressure the average atmospheric pressure at sea level.

Now taking the ideal gas equation and dividing both sides by P yields the formula V= nRT/P. Now “R”, the universal gas constant, is the product of Avogadro’s constant and Boltzmann’s constant, and so the formula can also be written as V = n (No)kT/P. No is the designation for Avogadro’s number and k is the normal symbol for Boltzmann’s constant. T is the temperature in degrees Kelvin. The little lower case letter “n” is the number of moles of the ideal gas we are talking about, in this case one mole. Now the values and dimensions (i.e. the labels) for the various parts are as follows:
n = 1 mole
No = 6.022045 X 1023/mole
k = 1.380662 x 10-23 joules/Ko
T = 273.15oK
P = 101,325 nt/m2

It is also important to know the historical changes in the definition of the gram. For the atomic weights of the Periodic Table are now a deviation from the gram’s original definition, which was 1 cubic centimeter (1 cm3) of water at 4oC. Now, when it was found that none of the atomic weights of the elements were an exact integer of grams—something chemists would have preferred, since they naturally wished to avoid cumbersome fractions in their computations—chemists thought it expedient to have Avogadro’s number of atoms of oxygen arbitrarily set at exactly 16 grams. Note that this could not be done without abandoning the original definition of the gram. Thus 6.022045 x 1023 atoms of natural oxygen was given an atomic weight of exactly 16 grams and was called a mole of oxygen. But since oxygen had been artificially given the value of 16 grams per Avogadro’s number of atoms, all the atomic weights of the other elements had to have their atomic weights changed by the same percentage and in the same direction so as to keep all the ratios of each element’s atomic weight to every other element’s atomic weight the same as it was before the artificial change.

Around 1961 it was decided that another slight cooking of the books was necessary. Now it was decided to declare that Avogadro’s number of the most common isotope of carbon would have a slightly lower atomic weight, arbitrarily set at 12 grams exactly. In fact, the atomic weight of carbon was slightly higher. My chemistry text from college gives the formula: (old atomic weight) = (1.000043)(new atomic weight). It states that the adoption of the new atomic weight for the most prevalent form of carbon atoms at exactly 12 grams per Avogadro’s number of atoms necessitated a percentage change as shown by the above formula. So the statement, that Avogadro’s number of carbon equals 12 grams exactly, is by mere decree of chemists. It was never the result of carbon actually weighing that.

Now, how would all this playing around with the atomic weights affect the volume of one mole of an ideal gas at STP? It wouldn’t change it at all. But why? The answer is found in the first two terms of the ideal gas equation: The first term is “n” which equals the number of moles. Since we want to know the volume of one mole, let’s substitute the presently accepted value for one mole, namely “12 grams of carbon”. This first term thus has “12 grams of carbon” in the numerator, with the denominator understood to be one. Now, the second term is 6.022045 x 1023 / mole. So we substitute “12 grams of carbon” for the word “mole” in the denominator of the second term. When both terms are multiplied together, the numerator of the first term cancels out with the denominator of the second term. Thus the vaunted definition by Metric enthusiasts of “12 grams of carbon” for a mole completely cancels out, leaving just Avogadro’s number. Or should one use the previously adopted value of 16 grams of oxygen, the same result would occur. Or if one uses ounces or slugs or pounds or stones or carats in determining atomic weights, the ideal gas law is impervious to all of them, as well. That is, they would all disappear, leaving Avogadro’s number behind. So the surviving equation is the multiplying of Avogadro’s number by Boltzmann’s constant, times the absolute temperature in degrees Kelvin, divided by 101,325 nt/m2.

So then, when one puts in the actual dimensions for joules, which is (nt-m) (i.e. newtons times meters), all the labels for the remaining numbers in the ideal gas equation cancel out, leaving m3 (cubic meters )behind, the volume of the ideal gas. When all the numbers in the numerator are multiplied together and then divided by the denominator, the result is .022413824 cubic meters. This is the same as 22413.824 cubic centimeters, because there are 100 x 100 x 100 cubic centimeters in a cubic meter which moves the decimal point over 6 places. Finally, 22413.824 cubic centimeters is divided by 1000.028 cm3 per liter giving 22.41319243 liters for one mole of an ideal gas at STP (experimental error puts range from 22. 410 to 22. 416 liters).

Unfortunately, many skeptics today remain under the illusion that a mole of an ideal gas at STP is calculable only in the metric system. But, in fact, the equation for an ideal gas can be cast into any system of weights and measures. For example, in the system that uses feet, pounds, and degrees Fahrenheit, the equation would be:

V = (1mole)(6.022045 x 1023/mole)(5.657699x10-24 ft-lbs/Fo) (Fo+459.67) divided by (2116.345 lbs./ft2)

Putting in 32 degrees Fahrenheit for the freezing point of water and solving the above equation gives .791536741 cubic feet for a molar volume. Multiplying that result by 1728 in3/ft3 and then multiplying that by (2.54 cm)3/in3 yields 22413.824 cubic centimeters for a molar volume, as was calculated with the metric system above. The value for Boltzmann’s constant has to be compatible with the size of the degree of temperature used. This is true for any system that might be devised.

A similar thing would have needed to be done in the metric system if Celsius had decided to divide the thermal distance between the freezing and boiling points of water into an interval of 200 degrees instead of 100 degrees. In that case the formula in the metric system for an ideal gas would have had half the numerical value for Boltzmann’s constant and twice as many Kelvin degrees for the freezing point of water. The product of these two numbers would still give the same total amount of energy input needed to inflate Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules from a zero volume to 22.414 liters.

In the equation using the English units of energy called foot-pounds, the total amount of foot-pounds needed to inflate Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules from a zero volume to .791536741 cubic feet is the same amount of energy that the metric system gives in its units of measurement for energy called joules.

Again, unfortunately, a whole fiction has been devised to persuade people of the necessity of the metric system to express a molar volume. This subtle delusion seems to be held by the most vocal skeptics. Yet I don’t honestly believe they are deliberately trying to be deceitful. Still, because I believe them wrong, I felt it necessary to show they are self-deceived, and a dangerous influence upon those who are unfamiliar with certain facts supported in the Bible.

Of further note is that at low enough temperatures all gases condense or solidify. But the ideal gas equation shows that Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules takes up no space at absolute zero. Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules only takes up space as defined by the temperature and pressure they are under. The molecules themselves are mere points that have no mass whatsoever. Thus, the argument that a molar volume of an ideal gas at STP cannot be determined unless the weight in grams of a mole of some real substance is known, is false, and shows a failure to examine the ideal gas equation carefully.

In conclusion it should be noted that ancient Israel would not have needed to know the scientific definitions of the bath and the cubit, to have had them incorporated into the artifacts of the Temple. All God would have needed to have done is to give someone a measured rod and tell him the length of the rod would be the standard unit of length called a cubit. Then He could tell them that the diameter of any hemisphere, when cubed and multiplied by three, would give the total volume of the hemisphere in baths (or ephahs), if they used cubits in measuring the diameter. In other words, He would not have needed to say something like:

“Oh, by the way, this rod is one ten-millionth of the earth's polar radius, and the bath is the space taken up by what some thousand years hence will be called Avogadro's number of ideal gas molecules at the freezing point of water and at normal atmospheric pressure. And when it is, it will be discovered by using a completely different system of weights and measures which will be claimed more scientific.”

No, He wouldn't have needed to have told them any such thing. He would merely have given them the simple formula above. Thus the Creator set up a measurement system that is much more in harmony with science and nature than has ever been devised by man.

You are missing the point.

Why chose something that is arbitrarily related to something that is also arbitary? Suppose people had decided to settle on the imperial system and Avagadro had that - he would have been unlikely to have chosen the volume of 1g of Hydrogen, but 1 Oz or 1lb (28g or 454g).

Daniel Gracely
22nd January 2012, 05:13 AM
My brother David writes:

I have tried to be thorough in my first post, and feel that it covers all the essential objections that have been raised, and have no desire to give light with a lot of heat. That is simply counter-productive. Nor am I interested in engaging in some sort of long, drawn-out, knock-em down kind of discussion.

But the legitimate question has been raised as to what evidence we have that a 25 inch cubit was ever used around the time of King Solomon.

The following is a quote from Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie. The website where this can be found will be given below.

"The 25 inch cubit is found in ancient Egypt, Assyria, Persia, Syria, and probably in Greece, varying from 25.1 to 25.4. In modern Persia, Arabia, Greece, Candia, Algiers, and Italy, a pic or braccio of the same length is found, varying from 25.0 to 25.3. The possibility of this widespread unit having some connection with the Chinese foot (the double of which is 25.18 +/- .04 and with the North American mound builders foot (1/2 of 25.20 +/- .04) should not be disregarded; though farther evidence, beyond these very close resemblances, is needed to prove a connection. Don Quiepo also connects with it the Japanese inc 75.21 - i.e., 3 x 25.07...The Egyptian form of this cubit is probably nearest to the original, as being the oldest that we have, and this gives 25.10. This is well known as the sacred Hebrew, Royal Persian, and Chaldean cubit, mentioned by Newton, Golius, Kelly, Quiepo and Oppert."

Petrie also said," There is doubtless a well-known ancient cubit of 25.2 inches...but that is decidedly not as short as 25.0..."

The following observation is then made on the website:

"It's a little odd that he (Petrie) says its decidedly not as short as 25.0 because the examples he found in Jerusalem did in fact average 25.00 +/- 0.03 inches (Inductive Metrology, p. 75). I suppose he means the average worldwide is not as short as 25.0..."

Petrie completely rejected the belief that the 25.025 inch cubit was incorporated into the construction of the Great Pyramid. That being said, it should be pointed out that those who believed from their study of the Great Pyramid that the sacred cubit was indeed 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius, never plugged in this value into King Solomon's Sea to come up with a molar volume. Smyth said that the 3,000 baths mentioned in Chronicles was "but fragmentary" and threw it out as being a mistake. He then proceeded to consider the 10 cubits to be the outside diameter and the 30 cubits to be the inside circumference. When he did that, he ruined any chance he may have had of coming to the conclusion that the Biblical bath was a molar volume.

I have not blindly followed everything Smyth said, nor do I blindly follow everything Petrie has said. But I am settled on the matter. Others are not. So be it. To all who have made it possible to share this info on this site, I thank you very much.

The site mentioned above, from which Petrie is quoted is:

Truthmatters.into/2011/01/25/sirisaac-newton-the-25-inch-sacred-cubit-and-noahs-ark

Daniel Gracely
22nd January 2012, 05:17 AM
Jimbob writes:
You are missing the point.

Why chose something that is arbitrarily related to something that is also arbitary? Suppose people had decided to settle on the imperial system and Avagadro had that - he would have been unlikely to have chosen the volume of 1g of Hydrogen, but 1 Oz or 1lb (28g or 454g).

We didn't miss the point. But you seem to have missed quite a few of them, if not nearly the entire discussion.

Aepervius
22nd January 2012, 05:32 AM
A "molten lake" would quite possibly be difficult to measure in cubits directly. Molten anything is bound to be fairly hot, possibly even burny.

Molten ice isn't exceptionally hot ;). He was looking at a lake created by a running and melting ice block :D...

Just kidding don't hurt me.

Dancing David
22nd January 2012, 06:27 AM
My brother David writes:

I have tried to be thorough in my first post, and feel that it covers all the essential objections that have been raised, and have no desire to give light with a lot of heat. That is simply counter-productive. Nor am I interested in engaging in some sort of long, drawn-out, knock-em down kind of discussion.

But the legitimate question has been raised as to what evidence we have that a 25 inch cubit was ever used around the time of King Solomon.

The following is a quote from Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie. The website where this can be found will be given below.

"The 25 inch cubit is found in ancient Egypt, Assyria, Persia, Syria, and probably in Greece, varying from 25.1 to 25.4. In modern Persia, Arabia, Greece, Candia, Algiers, and Italy, a pic or braccio of the same length is found, varying from 25.0 to 25.3. The possibility of this widespread unit having some connection with the Chinese foot (the double of which is 25.18 +/- .04 and with the North American mound builders foot (1/2 of 25.20 +/- .04) should not be disregarded; though farther evidence, beyond these very close resemblances, is needed to prove a connection. Don Quiepo also connects with it the Japanese inc 75.21 - i.e., 3 x 25.07...The Egyptian form of this cubit is probably nearest to the original, as being the oldest that we have, and this gives 25.10. This is well known as the sacred Hebrew, Royal Persian, and Chaldean cubit, mentioned by Newton, Golius, Kelly, Quiepo and Oppert."

Petrie also said," There is doubtless a well-known ancient cubit of 25.2 inches...but that is decidedly not as short as 25.0..."

The following observation is then made on the website:

"It's a little odd that he (Petrie) says its decidedly not as short as 25.0 because the examples he found in Jerusalem did in fact average 25.00 +/- 0.03 inches (Inductive Metrology, p. 75). I suppose he means the average worldwide is not as short as 25.0..."

Petrie completely rejected the belief that the 25.025 inch cubit was incorporated into the construction of the Great Pyramid. That being said, it should be pointed out that those who believed from their study of the Great Pyramid that the sacred cubit was indeed 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius, never plugged in this value into King Solomon's Sea to come up with a molar volume. Smyth said that the 3,000 baths mentioned in Chronicles was "but fragmentary" and threw it out as being a mistake. He then proceeded to consider the 10 cubits to be the outside diameter and the 30 cubits to be the inside circumference. When he did that, he ruined any chance he may have had of coming to the conclusion that the Biblical bath was a molar volume.

I have not blindly followed everything Smyth said, nor do I blindly follow everything Petrie has said. But I am settled on the matter. Others are not. So be it. To all who have made it possible to share this info on this site, I thank you very much.

The site mentioned above, from which Petrie is quoted is:

Truthmatters.into/2011/01/25/sirisaac-newton-the-25-inch-sacred-cubit-and-noahs-ark
http://truthmatters.info/2011/01/25/sir-isaac-newton-the-25-inch-sacred-cubit-and-noahs-ark/

So in other words no actual evidence that the cubit was 25 in. We have again the same reference to Issac Newton who did not study any ancient monuments.

We have statement about a book by Flinder Petrie, bit no actual quotes.

So we go here
[3] Petrie, Sir William Matthew Flinders, “Inductive metrology: or, the recovery of ancient measures from the monuments”, (London: Hargrove Suanders, 1877), pp. 133-134

Which if we look at the actual page cited, is based upon what, a literature review of other people's work, so it does not appear in fact that he measured something, read a text and decided that the cubit was 25 in. , all he did was read texts.

Noe lets us look at some of the jerusalem areas he does mention pg 75

Gennath gate: built around 20-70 CE, therefore not contemporary with Solomon

And it is post facto reasoning that he uses, he does not look at an ancient text that say "this place was five cubits" he just makes it up.

Then we can look at Chilsom:

Chisholm, Henry William, Warden of the Standards for Great Britain, “On the science of weighing and measuring and standards of measure and weight”, (London: Macmillan, 1877), p. 46.

Who again uses the same specious reasoning.

None of these three sources actually went some where, ancient ext in hand and measured something. there is no link from ancient text to measurement that says "this is how long the cubit was",, and in fact if you examine the text of Flinders

He discusses things like the fact that the persian cubit is know to be 16-18 in!

But then he goes on explain why this doesn't matter. H e rationalizes it , as he does most things by assuming the scared cubit and then saying "Well obviously the persian cubit is derived from this fraction of the sacred cubit"

So are you really saying that this is some sort of sound reasoning to base the value of teh sacred cubit upon?

Sorry this is just wretched archaeology!

Dancing David
22nd January 2012, 06:29 AM
Jimbob writes:
You are missing the point.

Why chose something that is arbitrarily related to something that is also arbitary? Suppose people had decided to settle on the imperial system and Avagadro had that - he would have been unlikely to have chosen the volume of 1g of Hydrogen, but 1 Oz or 1lb (28g or 454g).

We didn't miss the point. But you seem to have missed quite a few of them, if not nearly the entire discussion.

So lets see the gram was an arbitrary measure by any standard, yet Solomon's source knew that Avogadro was going to use that gram and not another arbitrary one?

Your rudeness makes it even funnier, you can't explain your own reasoning so you just claim that he missed it!

tsig
22nd January 2012, 06:48 AM
What you and your brother seem to be ignorant of is that pi is the ratio of the circumference of a circle to the diameter. The units that you measure it in do not matter. It does not matter how long a cubit is. So the screed about the length of a cubit was a waste of time.

So this verse is either

Stating that pi = 3 (yet another scientific error in the Bible) or
So imprecise (e.g "brim" may or may not mean the outside edge of the round molten sea, just how wide is a handsbreath? ) to be scientifically useless.

Glad you said that, I was trying to follow that wall'o'text but I didn't understand why he was worried about the length of the cubit since it didn't matter.

Biblidiots seem to be math challenged.

tsig
22nd January 2012, 06:57 AM
My brother David writes:

I have tried to be thorough in my first post, and feel that it covers all the essential objections that have been raised, and have no desire to give light with a lot of heat. That is simply counter-productive. Nor am I interested in engaging in some sort of long, drawn-out, knock-em down kind of discussion.

But the legitimate question has been raised as to what evidence we have that a 25 inch cubit was ever used around the time of King Solomon.

The following is a quote from Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie. The website where this can be found will be given below.

"The 25 inch cubit is found in ancient Egypt, Assyria, Persia, Syria, and probably in Greece, varying from 25.1 to 25.4. In modern Persia, Arabia, Greece, Candia, Algiers, and Italy, a pic or braccio of the same length is found, varying from 25.0 to 25.3. The possibility of this widespread unit having some connection with the Chinese foot (the double of which is 25.18 +/- .04 and with the North American mound builders foot (1/2 of 25.20 +/- .04) should not be disregarded; though farther evidence, beyond these very close resemblances, is needed to prove a connection. Don Quiepo also connects with it the Japanese inc 75.21 - i.e., 3 x 25.07...The Egyptian form of this cubit is probably nearest to the original, as being the oldest that we have, and this gives 25.10. This is well known as the sacred Hebrew, Royal Persian, and Chaldean cubit, mentioned by Newton, Golius, Kelly, Quiepo and Oppert."

Petrie also said," There is doubtless a well-known ancient cubit of 25.2 inches...but that is decidedly not as short as 25.0..."

The following observation is then made on the website:

"It's a little odd that he (Petrie) says its decidedly not as short as 25.0 because the examples he found in Jerusalem did in fact average 25.00 +/- 0.03 inches (Inductive Metrology, p. 75). I suppose he means the average worldwide is not as short as 25.0..."

Petrie completely rejected the belief that the 25.025 inch cubit was incorporated into the construction of the Great Pyramid. That being said, it should be pointed out that those who believed from their study of the Great Pyramid that the sacred cubit was indeed 1/10,000,000th of the earth's polar radius, never plugged in this value into King Solomon's Sea to come up with a molar volume. Smyth said that the 3,000 baths mentioned in Chronicles was "but fragmentary" and threw it out as being a mistake. He then proceeded to consider the 10 cubits to be the outside diameter and the 30 cubits to be the inside circumference. When he did that, he ruined any chance he may have had of coming to the conclusion that the Biblical bath was a molar volume.

I have not blindly followed everything Smyth said, nor do I blindly follow everything Petrie has said. But I am settled on the matter. Others are not. So be it. To all who have made it possible to share this info on this site, I thank you very much.

The site mentioned above, from which Petrie is quoted is:

Truthmatters.into/2011/01/25/sirisaac-newton-the-25-inch-sacred-cubit-and-noahs-ark

As has been mentioned previously since we're talking about a ratio between two numbers the actual units and lengths don't matter.

Jack by the hedge
22nd January 2012, 07:41 AM
... unfortunately, a whole fiction has been devised to persuade people of the necessity of the metric system to express a molar volume. This subtle delusion seems to be held by the most vocal skeptics. Yet I don’t honestly believe they are deliberately trying to be deceitful. Still, because I believe them wrong, I felt it necessary to show they are self-deceived, and a dangerous influence upon those who are unfamiliar with certain facts supported in the Bible.

Of further note is that at low enough temperatures all gases condense or solidify. But the ideal gas equation shows that Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules takes up no space at absolute zero. Avogadro’s number of ideal gas molecules only takes up space as defined by the temperature and pressure they are under. The molecules themselves are mere points that have no mass whatsoever. Thus, the argument that a molar volume of an ideal gas at STP cannot be determined unless the weight in grams of a mole of some real substance is known, is false, and shows a failure to examine the ideal gas equation carefully.

This makes no sense.

You can express standard temperature and pressure in any convenient units. That's true. You can change the value of Boltzmann's constant to reflect the units of energy and temperature you want to employ. That's also true. But whatever unit of mass you want to employ would also redefine the mole. And that would redefine Avogadro's number.

If you want to measure in pounds, or some archaic measure, that's fine. But the consequence is that you don't get to use a value for Avogadro's number derived from a molecular weight expressed in grams. That's metric, and would not begin to exist for thousands of years after the making of the artefact you are describing.

You attempt to handwave this away, but it's a strawman argument, requiring that you be allowed to assume a value for Avogadro's number which owes its derivation to the metric system which you claim not to require.

So, no, you may not have Avogadro's number as a "given".

Dancing David
22nd January 2012, 08:23 AM
Now lets see, here is a source that actually mentions objects assumed to be a cubit in length , from egypt no less.

And guess what we have five egyptian rods that are 20.64 in. long , not the one that some pyramid scholars want.

Complexity
22nd January 2012, 08:48 AM
His brother David is a nutcase.

catsmate1
22nd January 2012, 03:14 PM
My brother David writes:

More unsupported, evidence free, assertions I see.

dafydd
22nd January 2012, 03:17 PM
More unsupported, evidence free, assertions I see.

I'm still waiting for 'My brother David proves....'

catsmate1
22nd January 2012, 03:18 PM
This makes no sense.

You can express standard temperature and pressure in any convenient units. That's true. You can change the value of Boltzmann's constant to reflect the units of energy and temperature you want to employ. That's also true. But whatever unit of mass you want to employ would also redefine the mole. And that would redefine Avogadro's number.

If you want to measure in pounds, or some archaic measure, that's fine. But the consequence is that you don't get to use a value for Avogadro's number derived from a molecular weight expressed in grams. That's metric, and would not begin to exist for thousands of years after the making of the artefact you are describing.

You attempt to handwave this away, but it's a strawman argument, requiring that you be allowed to assume a value for Avogadro's number which owes its derivation to the metric system which you claim not to require.

So, no, you may not have Avogadro's number as a "given".
I've tried to point this out to D&D but they're too involved in their numerological ramblings to accept mere reality.

His brother David is a nutcase.
May I suggest inserting "also" before "a" in that sentence.

CapelDodger
22nd January 2012, 04:32 PM
His brother David is a nutcase.

Actually quite normal in his context, so a more charitable term is "differently normal" for those of us in the real-world context.

Or nutcase, whatever, I'm good with either.

dafydd
22nd January 2012, 04:37 PM
Actually quite normal in his context, so a more charitable term is "differently normal" for those of us in the real-world context.

Or nutcase, whatever, I'm good with either.

Maybe not. People can function normally yet have a bee in their bonnet.

CapelDodger
22nd January 2012, 04:41 PM
Your rudeness makes it even funnier, you can't explain your own reasoning so you just claim that he missed it!

I think it boils down to Avagadro's Number being dimensionless, therefore it doesn't matter what units you use to determine it.

Then again, that can't be right or you couldn't derive the pubic inch from it. Damn, thought I'd got it there. It's so hard trying to think inside an unfamiliar context (I'm a real-world denizen myself, thank Providence).

CapelDodger
22nd January 2012, 04:42 PM
Maybe not. People can function normally yet have a bee in their bonnet.

Don't get me started on cats :mad:.

ddt
22nd January 2012, 04:59 PM
I think it boils down to Avagadro's Number being dimensionless, therefore it doesn't matter what units you use to determine it.

Then again, that can't be right or you couldn't derive the pubic inch from it. Damn, thought I'd got it there. It's so hard trying to think inside an unfamiliar context (I'm a real-world denizen myself, thank Providence).

It isn't dimensionless; Avogadro's number is 6.02... * 10^23 mol-1. But then, mole is a funny unit...

Vorpal
22nd January 2012, 08:08 PM
It isn't dimensionless; Avogadro's number is 6.02... * 10^23 mol-1. But then, mole is a funny unit...
But then Avogadro's number and Avogadro's constant are two different things, and only the latter can be considered dimensionful. Though frankly the utility of defining amounts as a dimension escapes me; I guess it's only done because the number itself is measured in terms of another dimensionful unit.

ddt
22nd January 2012, 09:25 PM
But then Avogadro's number and Avogadro's constant are two different things, and only the latter can be considered dimensionful. Though frankly the utility of defining amounts as a dimension escapes me; I guess it's only done because the number itself is measured in terms of another dimensionful unit.

It's obvious from this thread why (most) scientific constants need dimensions. It expresses in which set of units the constant is expressed. To take another example: the universal gas constant R = 8.314.. J mol-1 K-1. If you use the ideal gas law: PV = nRT, it only works if you plug in the pressure in Pascal, volume in m3 etc. If, on the other hand, you'd work in imperial units, you'd still have a universal gas constant, but with a different value and a different dimension.

Mathematical constants, like pi, on the other hand, are dimensionless. It doesn't matter what unit of length you employ: the circumference of a circle is always pi times its diameter (well, provided you use the same unit of length for both :)). And this is exactly what David Gracely's posts continuously overlook. It doesn't matter how many inches exactly a cubit was, you still can't get a circle with diameter 10 cubit and circumference 30 cubit.

Vorpal
22nd January 2012, 09:45 PM
It's obvious from this thread why (most) scientific constants need dimensions. It expresses in which set of units the constant is expressed. To take another example: the universal gas constant R = 8.314.. J mol-1 K-1. If you use the ideal gas law: PV = nRT, it only works if you plug in the pressure in Pascal, volume in m3 etc. If, on the other hand, you'd work in imperial units, you'd still have a universal gas constant, but with a different value and a different dimension.
I'm very aware of this, yet its relevance is not in my grasp. For example, (picking randomly) the SI unit of radiance is W/(sr·m²), with the steradian defined as an SI derived unit, its presence an important reminder as to what kind of thing we're talking about. And yet, sr is a completely dimensionless unit.

I don't see much reason why the mol can't be thought of in the same way, as a dimensionless unit and your argument doesn't supply any reasons for it have a dimension. I have a guess on this (in the previous post), but that reason doesn't seem to me convincing. For your example in particular, I don't see why I can't equally well write R = 1.6568×10-22 J/(K·dozen), count my particles by the dozen and have the ideal gas law work just as well. Defining "dozen" as a dimension, as SI does for "mol", seems completely unnecessary.

Jack by the hedge
23rd January 2012, 01:43 AM
The problem is not that Avogadro's number is dimensionless. The problem is that you cannot derive a value for it without reference to the metric system. Without the existence of the gram, you don't have the mole, and without the mole you don't have Avogadro's number.

Perhaps David or his brother would like to try to derive a value for it without reference to any metric weights or measures. That should be entertaining.

ddt
23rd January 2012, 02:41 AM
I'm very aware of this, yet its relevance is not in my grasp. For example, (picking randomly) the SI unit of radiance is W/(sr·m²), with the steradian defined as an SI derived unit, its presence an important reminder as to what kind of thing we're talking about. And yet, sr is a completely dimensionless unit.

I don't see much reason why the mol can't be thought of in the same way, as a dimensionless unit and your argument doesn't supply any reasons for it have a dimension. I have a guess on this (in the previous post), but that reason doesn't seem to me convincing. For your example in particular, I don't see why I can't equally well write R = 1.6568×10-22 J/(K·dozen), count my particles by the dozen and have the ideal gas law work just as well. Defining "dozen" as a dimension, as SI does for "mol", seems completely unnecessary.
So your objection is specifically against the mole as a dimension - not against, say, the meter or the kilogram or the second? I can agree with you there, I never quite understood why the mole has to be a dimension and, on top of that, a base unit in the SI. Isn't it just derived from the kilogram?

For the rest, what Jack by the hedge said.

Aepervius
23rd January 2012, 03:34 AM
So your objection is specifically against the mole as a dimension - not against, say, the meter or the kilogram or the second? I can agree with you there, I never quite understood why the mole has to be a dimension and, on top of that, a base unit in the SI. Isn't it just derived from the kilogram?

For the rest, what Jack by the hedge said.

It is derived from the kilogram. It is the number of atoms in 12g of carbon 12.

But see why it is much more used in chemistry and gas physic than g/mg/kg , is that you can easily make equation equilibrated in quantity of atoms, volumes, or even concentrations but a hassle to calculate in mass.

Those critic about mole are actually well known and quite old. But mole are still used.

ddt
23rd January 2012, 04:26 AM
It is derived from the kilogram. It is the number of atoms in 12g of carbon 12.

But see why it is much more used in chemistry and gas physic than g/mg/kg , is that you can easily make equation equilibrated in quantity of atoms, volumes, or even concentrations but a hassle to calculate in mass.

Those critic about mole are actually well known and quite old. But mole are still used.
I don't deny the usefulness of the mole, on the contrary. However, why is it a SI base unit when it's simply derived from the kilogram?

Evilgiraffe
23rd January 2012, 11:18 AM
Because it's so fundamental to the practice of chemistry? Yes, chemistry could be done referencing everything to the kilogram, but that would entail so much extra unnecessary calculation. The mole is a useful enough shortcut for an entire branch of the physical sciences that it is included in the base units.

Similarly, the Ampere is really a composite unit. A number of electrons per second flowing through a set of reference wires at a set distance in a vacuum, so as to elicit a specific force between those wires. Put like that, the Ampere is even more convoluted than the mole. Yet it is so useful in the study of electrical phenomena that it is included in the set of base units.

jimbob
23rd January 2012, 01:01 PM
But Evilgiraffe, an amp is not defined in terms of electrons. It is defined in terms of force exerted by the current under particular conditions. A coulomb is defined as an Amp.Second; the charge on an electron can be defined in terms of coulombs.

Vorpal
23rd January 2012, 01:22 PM
The problem is not that Avogadro's number is dimensionless. The problem is that you cannot derive a value for it without reference to the metric system. Without the existence of the gram, you don't have the mole, and without the mole you don't have Avogadro's number.
That's very much true for the purposes of this thread and the various arguments biblical arguments around it, and is the reason they are are ridiculous.

It is derived from the kilogram. It is the number of atoms in 12g of carbon 12.
That's the definition of Avogadro's number, but not the mole. If that were the definition of a mole, it'd be plain that though this number is experimentally measured, it is still just a number and hence dimensionless.

But see why it is much more used in chemistry and gas physic than g/mg/kg , is that you can easily make equation equilibrated in quantity of atoms, volumes, or even concentrations but a hassle to calculate in mass.
I've not questioned its utility at all, or the use of defining it as a unit. I'm only saying I have difficulty seeing why it's defined as dimensionful base unit, i.e., seeing what breaks down if it's defined without dimension and derived. If the mole was redefined tomorrow as a numerical convention based on an arbitrary and dimensionful reference, there probably is something that goes wrong. But I have trouble coming up with an example which can't be easily restated to be talking about numbers.

Because it's so fundamental to the practice of chemistry? Yes, chemistry could be done referencing everything to the kilogram, but that would entail so much extra unnecessary calculation.
Can it? If so, that's actually the best argument for not having the mol as a base unit of its own separate dimensionality.

Look, no one said it's not convenient or useful to define it as a unit. Arguments in that regards are completely irrelevant.

23rd January 2012, 01:49 PM
I've not questioned its utility at all, or the use of defining it as a unit. I'm only saying I have difficulty seeing why it's defined as dimensionful base unit, i.e., seeing what breaks down if it's defined without dimension and derived. If the mole was redefined tomorrow as a numerical convention based on an arbitrary and dimensionful reference, there probably is something that goes wrong. But I have trouble coming up with an example which can't be easily restated to be talking about numbers.
.

I dont believe anything would break down as long as you reference Avogadro's number.

Just the same as you could, if you wished, eliminate other 'fundamental' SI Units.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fundamental_unit

CapelDodger
24th January 2012, 04:03 PM
I don't deny the usefulness of the mole, on the contrary. However, why is it a SI base unit when it's simply derived from the kilogram?

My mistake :o. I'd been trying to think inside the believer context and got a crick in my mind. I shouldn't abuse a finely-tuned instrument that way, it's like off-roading in a Ferrari.

I assume the mole exists so that dimensions match on both sides of an equation (the first check to make before you hand in the paper, as I'm sure we were all taught), and an SI base unit because that system has expanded to fill every niche available.