Q. In doing some research on Biblical numbers, I came across the date 4003/4 BC for the time that Adam was given life in the garden. When you add 4003 to 1997, you get 6000 years, the time of man. By multiplying 120 years, (the days of man, Gen. 6) with 50 Jubilee cycles, you get 6000 years again. It all makes sense but I want to verify the 4003/4 date for Adam’s creation by God. Are you familiar with this date as being accurate?
A. Bishop James Ussher, in his exhaustive account “The Annals of the World” placed the date of Adam’s creation in the fall of 4004 BC. It was first published in 1658 and as far as I know no one has come up with a better estimate.
The mention of 120 years in Genesis 6:3 does not apply to the days of man, but to the length of the warning God gave man of the coming judgment. Pre-flood man lived much longer than 120 years and the life spans of post flood man steadily declined. For example Noah’s son Shem, who lived to the ripe old age of 600 (Genesis 11:10-11) survived eight of the first nine post flood generations including Abraham’s. Abraham lived for 175 years, but his great grandson Joseph died at 110 (Genesis 50:26) and King David lived for 71 years. Psalm 90:10 says that average biblical lifespan is 70-80 years.