Did people in the Old Testament, like Noah and Adam and Seth, really live over 800 years? Like other concepts in the bible, such as Heaven and Hell and Wizards, the truth lies behind both interpretation and the evolution of these interpretations.
Some people believe that yes, they were part of God’s perfect creation and did live for exactly as long as it say in the bible.
Other religious texts also refer to people living to ages that seem astonishing by current standards.
Others say that the things we die from now are things we adopted from past generations. Back then, there was no AIDS or cancer or tooth decay. There were no genetically modified meat and vegetables, and things in our air, and in our water, and in our gene pools.
Others don’t want to talk about the facts, but would rather hang onto faith and not get specific.
To be completely honest, we can’t know right now. If the kingdom of heaven truly exists, then those who are believers will surely know these answers, and those who are not believers will never know.
In the present moment or our lives, it may be reasonable to question if this can be true or not. Many believe that to live this long is impossible, and therefore the text of the bible is only mythology and folkore.
Others go so far as to accuse people who consider the possibilities as being completely off their rocker and in need of a therapist.
Others may say that years back in ancient times were calculated differently, and that 900 years back then was more equivalent to the oldest of our generation that live now. Indeed, considering that most people died before our modern day age of 30 – usually because of bad teeth or other ailments – this theory could very well be true.
And it can also be argued that God can change the laws of man whenever he sees fit, according to his will. For instance, in Genesis 6:3, God seems to indicate that most people are merely human, and that they only live to 120. And that he will not always be with those people.
Of course, it is possible that people did live longer all those centuries ago. And it is possible that the text of the bible is literal. While in recent centuries, there’s been an upgrade in health standards across the globe and lifespans are lengthening, it’s hard to get a picture of the overall math curve. Perhaps the human body has been on a steady downgrade all of these years, and the uptick is only recent. Or maybe it’s possible that those ages could represent generations and cultures of various peoples, not merely individuals.
What do you believe? It is good to ask these questions.