[Originally published as From Genesis to Jesus, Part 4]
In the year 1650, the scholar James Ussher published a magnificent tome in which he methodically examined all of the major events in earth’s history, from the creation up until the year AD 70. Incredibly, Ussher concluded in this book, The Annals of the World, that the creation, as noted in Genesis, occurred in the year 4004 BC. In fact, Ussher, not content to stop at simply providing the year, went so far as to declare that the creation took place on October 23rd of that year!
In order to reach his year for creation, Ussher relied on several sources, from extensive collections of manuscripts and first-hand accounts from across Europe to the various records of the Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Persian nations. Most important of all, Ussher relied on the authority of the biblical record, utilizing the Scriptures to build his history.
While skeptics continue to scoff at such reliance on the Bible as a reference, time and again, that holiest of books has been proven correct in its chronologies of kings and kingdoms, and of customs and cultures. Thus, for the period prior to 600 BC or so, lacking any solid and trustworthy records beyond that of the more recent Persian Empire, Ussher relied on the Scriptures to provide the requisite information.
Starting with the death of Nebuchadnezzar, the famed Babylonian king, Ussher began working back through time, referring to the extensive genealogies and historic records of the Bible, piecing together a wealth of information, and eventually compiling a fascinating timeline.
According to his calculations, Ussher concluded the dates for all major biblical events. Among these were the years of the Jewish Exodus (1,491 BC), the global flood of Noah’s day (2,348 BC), and the birth of Seth, Adam’s third son, (3,874 BC). For every date and span considered, Ussher used the Bible’s own records along with the more modern accounts of various nations to complete his work. Most amazing of all, his thoroughly cross-referenced timeline anchors the very creation of this reality to a point sometime in or very near the year 4,004 BC!
Aside from the standard reaction amongst the intelligentsia, whereby such biblically-based things are to be ridiculed and dismissed without much consideration at all, there have been several other attempts made over the years to refine, or perhaps refute, Ussher’s findings. Each has invariably arrived at a similar conclusion: creation, based on the Biblical account, is dramatically younger than the mainstream would have us believe.
– This was an excerpt from “Remnants of Eden: Evolution, Deep-Time, & the Antediluvian World.”