Teach Us to Number Our Days

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Dr. Edwin R. Thiele - Biblical Chronology



Dr. Edwin R. Thiele is best known for his efforts to solve the Chronology "Gordian knot "

of the Hebrew Kings. When King Solomon died the Kingdom of Israel rejected the "One

King" provision (Solomon's son Rehoboam) God had granted them and divided into two

Kingdoms governed by two Kings (Rehoboam and Jeraboam). Each of these Kingdoms

(Judah and Israel) had their own unique histories and succession of Kings which are

interwoven in the records of the Bible. Not less than 100 scriptures link the two kingdoms

to each other by referring to the reignal years of their various Kings as history unfolded.

However, at times these scriptures seem to contradict one another with regard to

chronological sequence. Dr. Thiele proposed the difficulty was based on one kingdom

numbering the year of their King's reign from the year he ascended the thrown while the

other kingdom numbered the reign from the beginning of the next year after new years

day. For the Hebrews new years day was sometimes Nisan 1 or in some cases the more

ancient Tishri 1.


When the Biblical record of the Hebrew Kings contradicted the Assyrian chronology Dr.

Thiele chose to honor the Assyrian records as the truth, relegating Bible Scripture as

being in error (see The Mysterious Numbers of the Hebrew Kings, New Revised Edition,

1994, p.34). In cases where he could not resolve the differences between Bible verses he

declared a further error in the Bible (see The Mysterious Numbers of the Hebrew Kings,

New Revised Edition, 1994, p.198).


In conclusion Dr. Thiele was only able to bring about harmony in scriptures by declaring

errors in the Bible, make the Kingdom of Israel the standard and force the Kingdom of

Judah to fit into only 241 years. This was done by “creating” 9 non-biblical co-regencies

for Judah. These overlapping reigns removed the “excess” 20 years. He and others chose

Israel as the standard because the co-regency concept was more intellectually acceptable

to them than the alternative which is that of interregnums. Yet the Bible declares, "The

scepter shall not depart form Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh

come; and unto Him shall the gathering of the people be" (Genesis 49: 10). The standard

should have been Judah. Thus, the Kingdom of Israel should be fit over a 261 year

period. "Let God be true and every man a liar" (Romans 3:4).


Dr. Thiele's attempt to solve the chronology of the Hebrew Kings started out well but fell

into error when he began to presume that he could correct the errors of the Bible. In

fact, the Bible was absolutely correct all the time but he simply failed to make it the

standard and thereby the latter error was worse than just mere ignorance.


Solving the Chronology of the Hebrew Kings would require triangulation graphic procedures

employed by Dr. Floyd Nolen Jones. This procedure simultaneously solves and graphically

portrays eighty one (81) Bible verses that link the Chronologies of the Kingdom of Judah,

the Kingdom of Israel and the Kingdom of Babylon. Dr. Jones correctly places the Bible

as the highest historical standard, the Assyrian records not withstanding.