Methuselah and the Flood

This entry is part 39 of 81 in the series Inquiring Minds
Image by Subham Shome from Pixabay

Methuselah was the oldest person to live in the Bible. When did he die and why?

Methuselah lived to be 969 years old. He was the oldest man who ever lived according to the Bible. I’m a theologian, certainly not a mathematician. But I’ve tried to do some math from what we know of the genealogy in Genesis 5.

If I’m correct my calculations, Methuselah died the year of the flood. Moses was 600 years old when the flood came. That my data suggests that Methuselah died in the very same year. I’m reticent to show it to you because I am a terrible mathematician and I could very well be wrong.

Even if my math is wrong, Methuselah died before the flood began. He was not numbered among the eight people who entered the ark and were saved from the flood. Only Noah, his wife, his three sons, and their three wives were rescued from the flood.

Every human on the planet aside from these eight perished in the flood. It was probably most likely from drowning in the water. It reached incredible heights, and toppled the highest mountain in the region. Nobody would survive that without the help of a boat.

But no one built a boat except for Noah. None of the people believed Noah and so all of them perished in the flood. Even if someone did build a boat to survive, it would have to be large enough to carry food for a year and they would be unable to settle down on any land.

Table of Genealogies in Genesis

Name Fathered Born pre-flood Lifespan Difference Died Years pre-flood
Adam 130 1656 930 0   726
Seth 105 1526 912 18   614
Enosh 90 1421 905 7 Seth 516
Kenan 70 1331 910 +5 Enosh 421
Mahalalel 65 1261 895 +15 Mahalalel 366
Jared 162 1196 962 +67 Adam 234
Enoch 65 1034 365 +597 Enoch 669
Methuselah 187 969 969 +604 Jarred, 0
Lamech 182 782 777 192   5
Noah 500 600       0
The flood Noah: 600-601  
Noah 350   950      
Shem, Ham, Japheth         Flood – 100, 101  

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