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Pilgrimtozion
Apr 14th 2010, 03:23 PM
As I was growing up, I was always taught that the number 40 stands for testing in the Bible. During the Battle thread, this came up, so I decided to take a look at where the number 40 appears in the Bible. Take a look:

Noah - it rained for 40 days & 40 nights
Moses - he was on Mt. Sinai for 40 days & 40 nights
Spies - Spied out the land for 40 days
Hebrews - wandered in the wilderness for 40 years
Judges - the time of peace was often 40 years in between invasions due to sin
Goliath - taunted the Israelites and the living God for 40 days
David - Ruled Israel for 40 years
Solomon - Ruled Israel for 40 years
Elijah - Ran for 40 days & 40 night to Mt. Horeb
Jesus - tempted by the devil in the wilderness for 40 days & 40 nights
Jesus - time between His Resurrection and Ascension is 40 days

Interesting? I certainly think so! What do you think?

HisLeast
Apr 14th 2010, 03:48 PM
I also notice that its almost always in the context of purging or the testing of endurance.

Amos_with_goats
Apr 14th 2010, 03:52 PM
No great spiritual revelation, but do you ever notice how one's 40th birthday is generally accepted to be a major milestone?

Brother Mark
Apr 14th 2010, 04:18 PM
Deut 8:2-3
2 "You shall remember all the way which the Lord your God has led you in the wilderness these forty years, that He might humble you, testing you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. 3 "He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord.
NASU

and

Matt 4:1-2

4 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry.
NASU

There is rarely testing without temptation.

On another note, Isaac was married at 40. Being single is a time of testing too with lots of temptations! Nice thread.

Grace to you,

Mark

Ta-An
Apr 14th 2010, 04:26 PM
Non Biblical 40's
40 Winks.....
Life starts at 40...

Ta-An
Apr 14th 2010, 06:31 PM
Pilgrim, when you look at the incidences that took 40 days or 40 years, it seems like it was a preparation time for something better to come, or a time to receive something 'worthy'

After the flood, a new creation begins
Israel in the desert, going into the promised land
Jesus in the desert, His ministry begins

The 40 days after Resurrection can then be seen symbolically as the preparation time for the new Church age?? A perfect time of preparation ( The fullness of time ) for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost :idea: Pentecost then also completes the fulfillment of the Feast of Weeks...

I have always seen Ascension and Pentecost as "one" celebration, where I now see them as two separate Individual Feasts/celebrations :)

JohnDB
Apr 15th 2010, 01:24 AM
Well...

My take is a bit different.

TO ME,
I see the "Forty" as some kind of righteous anger. The people who had this anger were right in some fashion for having it. The struggle can sometimes be internal but not always. God vx Man as in the forty days of the rain for the flood...or Jesus' forty days in the wilderness...or the wandering for forty years in the desert because they refused to have faith. (see the Hebrews passage pointing at this)

Granted with God nothing is wasted...even anger isn't wasted...and the time is always used to test us in the meantime.

Pilgrimtozion
Apr 15th 2010, 12:19 PM
Well...

My take is a bit different.

TO ME,
I see the "Forty" as some kind of righteous anger. The people who had this anger were right in some fashion for having it. The struggle can sometimes be internal but not always. God vx Man as in the forty days of the rain for the flood...or Jesus' forty days in the wilderness...or the wandering for forty years in the desert because they refused to have faith. (see the Hebrews passage pointing at this)

Granted with God nothing is wasted...even anger isn't wasted...and the time is always used to test us in the meantime.

Hmmmm...from the Scriptures, I don't see anger in every instance. God was certainly upset in the case of the flood and the wandering in the desert. But in the other instances...I'm not so sure.

inn
Apr 15th 2010, 03:31 PM
In ancient times, there were only 9 numbers, 40=4, as 4+0=4, 4 stood for the square block, what ever side it was pushed onto, it was equaly as stable, and also a good corner stone...so tested, yes, standing firm, yes.

JohnDB
Apr 16th 2010, 12:17 AM
Hmmmm...from the Scriptures, I don't see anger in every instance. God was certainly upset in the case of the flood and the wandering in the desert. But in the other instances...I'm not so sure.
OK...
Which times are you not seeing anger?

Jesus in the wilderness?
His coming had been foretold since the very beginning...all of the signs of his coming were precisely in place and yet no one was looking for him. There were thousands of prophesies concerning him...and yet no one was there to greet him after his baptism. So...he wandered angrily in the Judean wilderness for forty days while Satan Tempted him.

genealogist
Apr 16th 2010, 12:43 AM
40 is the number of testing.

E. W. Bullinger in his book (now public domain free of copyrights) says this about the number 40:

Forty has long been universally recognized as an important number, both on account of the frequency of its occurrence, and the uniformity of its association with a period of probation, trial, and chastisement—(not judgment, like the number 9, which stands in connection with the punishment of enemies, but the chastisement of sons, and of a covenant people). It is the product of 5 and 8, and points to the action of grace (5), leading to and ending in revival and renewal (8). This is certainly the case where forty relates to a period of evident probation. But where it relates to enlarged dominion, or to renewed or extended rule, then it does so in virtue of its factors 4 and 10, and in harmony with their signification.

JohnDB
Apr 16th 2010, 02:00 AM
40 is the number of testing.

E. W. Bullinger in his book (now public domain free of copyrights) says this about the number 40:

Forty has long been universally recognized as an important number, both on account of the frequency of its occurrence, and the uniformity of its association with a period of probation, trial, and chastisement—(not judgment, like the number 9, which stands in connection with the punishment of enemies, but the chastisement of sons, and of a covenant people). It is the product of 5 and 8, and points to the action of grace (5), leading to and ending in revival and renewal (8). This is certainly the case where forty relates to a period of evident probation. But where it relates to enlarged dominion, or to renewed or extended rule, then it does so in virtue of its factors 4 and 10, and in harmony with their signification.

My Copy of Bullinger is sitting right here on the shelf...I know what he says about the number forty...I just happen to disagree with him on this one.

Don't get me wrong..It isn't that I don't respect the work he has done or that he is all wet on many of the things that he says...just we have a difference of opinion on this one.

Pilgrimtozion
Apr 16th 2010, 10:56 AM
OK...
Which times are you not seeing anger?

Jesus in the wilderness?
His coming had been foretold since the very beginning...all of the signs of his coming were precisely in place and yet no one was looking for him. There were thousands of prophesies concerning him...and yet no one was there to greet him after his baptism. So...he wandered angrily in the Judean wilderness for forty days while Satan Tempted him.

The anger you suggest is nowhere to be found in the accounts of the gospel or elsewhere in references to Jesus wandering in the wilderness. You are reading into the text here, since it nowhere states that Jesus went into the wilderness because He was angry. It states that Jesus went into the wilderness because the Spirit led Him there.

JohnDB
Apr 16th 2010, 12:34 PM
The anger you suggest is nowhere to be found in the accounts of the gospel or elsewhere in references to Jesus wandering in the wilderness. You are reading into the text here, since it nowhere states that Jesus went into the wilderness because He was angry. It states that Jesus went into the wilderness because the Spirit led Him there.

The anger is said in the use of the number forty...that isn't reading in or Eisogesis. A symbol or metaphor is set up in the Torah...sometimes a metaphor or symbol or type is shifted later by people's misunderstanding of it's use in the Torah...but in this case it isn't. This one stands clear and the understanding is carried on into New Testament times as well. Look to the book of Hebrews and see that even then the number forty was a symbol of righteous anger even then.

What most forget is that God is good...and righteous anger is also good...it isn't so much like normal anger that you or I would experience where we might lash out in inappropriate ways...it is different.

And then this also is one of the "fungible" areas as well....God is immutable. (He doesn't change, doesn't have a bad day, doesn't really shift in dealings based on his emotions)

threebigrocks
Apr 16th 2010, 03:43 PM
With Noah, God's anger was in the flood itself. Just as the waters rose quickly God could have cause the waters to recede quickly. He didn't. Righteous anger came in the destruction through the flood. The 40 days was only known to those who weren't destroyed - Noah and his family. God's anger had been carried out, and now 40 days remained for Noah to wait.

-SEEKING-
Apr 16th 2010, 03:50 PM
So...he wandered angrily in the Judean wilderness for forty days while Satan Tempted him.

There's no mention of anger in this instance of the bible. Hunger yes, but not anger.

JohnDB
Apr 16th 2010, 04:33 PM
With Noah, God's anger was in the flood itself. Just as the waters rose quickly God could have cause the waters to recede quickly. He didn't. Righteous anger came in the destruction through the flood. The 40 days was only known to those who weren't destroyed - Noah and his family. God's anger had been carried out, and now 40 days remained for Noah to wait.

The time in the Ark was over a year.

JohnDB
Apr 16th 2010, 04:36 PM
There's no mention of anger in this instance of the bible. Hunger yes, but not anger.

That is my contention...

That the number 40 means that Jesus was righteously angry.

Kinda like a big party is being thrown in your honor except that no one comes to the party at all...that would kinda be a big let down.

Except in this instance the Savior of All mankind is going to walk amongst us...and no one seems to care or know anything about it...those that were supposed to teach the important stuff have gone off the reservation and are teaching all kinds of legalisms...that would be sooo annoying from God's perspective.

Pilgrimtozion
Apr 16th 2010, 05:25 PM
The time in the Ark was over a year.

Okay, I see better what you are saying now. How does that fit in with other instances of 40, though. Certainly explains only a few, not all of them.

threebigrocks
Apr 16th 2010, 05:33 PM
The time in the Ark was over a year.

Yeah....it was. But really a person can drown in a puddle. The flood was more than a puddle, and water continued long past anyone but Noah and his family being able to survive.

JohnDB
Apr 16th 2010, 06:13 PM
Okay, I see better what you are saying now. How does that fit in with other instances of 40, though. Certainly explains only a few, not all of them.

If you look over the other passages and think about normal human emotions and how someone might be angry in the situation that they were in...you will find that anger or righteous anger very well can be found in that situation.

Ever been angry at a loved one for dying?
Or frustrated with teaching someone who should have gotten it long ago?
Or understand that righteous judgement is coming for actions not taken? (God angry for lack of action or wrong action)

That is what we are supposed to understand when we read the Bible...normal human emotions...we do have them. When we are faced in particular situations we can get depressed, angry, happy, giddy, frustrated...whatever. You have to identify with these heroes and how they would percieve these things.

episkopos
Aug 9th 2013, 04:05 PM
As I was growing up, I was always taught that the number 40 stands for testing in the Bible. During the Battle thread, this came up, so I decided to take a look at where the number 40 appears in the Bible. Take a look:

Noah - it rained for 40 days & 40 nights
Moses - he was on Mt. Sinai for 40 days & 40 nights
Spies - Spied out the land for 40 days
Hebrews - wandered in the wilderness for 40 years
Judges - the time of peace was often 40 years in between invasions due to sin
Goliath - taunted the Israelites and the living God for 40 days
David - Ruled Israel for 40 years
Solomon - Ruled Israel for 40 years
Elijah - Ran for 40 days & 40 night to Mt. Horeb
Jesus - tempted by the devil in the wilderness for 40 days & 40 nights
Jesus - time between His Resurrection and Ascension is 40 days

Interesting? I certainly think so! What do you think?

The number 40 seems to be the number of testing. I know how much we have been tested and visited by God at our house (we live at #40 on our street). We also bought a building for a café outreach and that happens to be #40 as well...mere coincidence?

Scooby_Snacks
Aug 9th 2013, 06:22 PM
Pilgrim, when you look at the incidences that took 40 days or 40 years, it seems like it was a preparation time for something better to come, or a time to receive something 'worthy'

After the flood, a new creation begins
Israel in the desert, going into the promised land
Jesus in the desert, His ministry begins

The 40 days after Resurrection can then be seen symbolically as the preparation time for the new Church age?? A perfect time of preparation ( The fullness of time ) for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost :idea: Pentecost then also completes the fulfillment of the Feast of Weeks...

I have always seen Ascension and Pentecost as "one" celebration, where I now see them as two separate Individual Feasts/celebrations :)

I look at 40 in a similar way... what comes before a new beginning. Gives hope.

At one time, not sure how I am about it now, I saw 40 as the cumulative of 10 (The perfection of divine order) times 4 (Gods creative works) A large scale period of time.

Brother Paul
Aug 9th 2013, 11:14 PM
So are the 40s of the Bible always literal? I think not...what do you think?

Scooby_Snacks
Aug 10th 2013, 02:32 AM
So are the 40s of the Bible always literal? I think not...what do you think?

Some may be and others not.