It's Crank Week, take 2!
If you put Harold Camping into a particle accelerator and fired him at near-lightspeed into Gail Riplinger so they fused together, what would you get? None other than Peter S. Ruckman, of course. Dr. Petey's biblical hermeneutic, and I use that term most generously, combines the bombastic nuttery of Riplinger with the incomprehensible pseudo-mathematical hermeneutic of Camping.
Here's a real gem of an "argument" I found courtesy of the evil Alexandrian Cultists plotting to overthrow Christianity at Bible Versions Discussion Board, from the June 2009 issue [PDF] of Dr. Petey's newsletter, the Bible Believers Bulletin:
Now, do you want a bomb to put in your pocket to shut the mouths of these stupid idiots who deny the four Scriptural truths written in "the scripture of truth" (Dan. 10:21). Well, here it is: it is delivered by a Filipino Christian who came out of Manila. This is Periander Aban Esplana, who was 35 years old when he wrote it. His work is callled "The Bible Formula." . . .
Bro. Espiana's AV 1611 "Mathematical Formula" turns out to be anohter one of several hundred "advanced revelations" that were totally missed by A. T. Robertson, Kenneth Wuest. . . . The "formula" is as follows:
A. At the beginning of the Bible in Genesis 1:1 - 10 words, 44 letters 17 vowels, and 27 consonants - IN ENGLISH, not ANY Hebrew manuscript.
B. At the end of the Church Age in 1 John 5:7 - 22 words, 88 letters, 34 vowels, and 54 consonants IN ENGLISH, not ANY Greek manuscript.
C. At the end of the Bible in Revelation 22:21 - 12 words, 44 letters, 17 vowels, and 27 consonants - IN ENGLISH, not in ANY Greek manuscript.
The AV 1611 Mathematical Formula is as follows:
A-44 plus C-44 equals B-88
A-17 plus C-17 equals B-34
A-27 plus C-27 equals B-54
That is, the WORDS found in Genesis 1:1 added to the WORDS found in Revelation 22:21 (the beginning and the end are summed up in 1 John 5:7 by the Trinity.
The LETTERS found in Genesis 1:1 aded to the LETTERS found in Revelation 22:21 produce the total LETTERS in 1 John 5:7.
The VOWELS found in Genesis 1:1 added to the VOWELS found in Revelation 22:21 give you the total VOWELS in 1 John 5:7.
The CONSONANTS found in Genesis 1:1 added to the CONSONANTS found in Revelation 22:21 equal those CONSONANTS found in 1 John 5:7.
Got it? Explain it. Not one Hebrew or Greek manuscript found in 2,000 years displays that mathematical miracle.
"King James only! King James Onlyism! Heresy! Oh, God, save us from RUCKMANISM! Oh, what a cultic RUCKMANITE!"
Ahh, go stick you [sic] left hind leg in your right ear.
I'll repent of that advice when you send me the EXPLANATION for that ADVANCED REVELATION God gve you through a 35-year-old Filipino. In the meantime, act like a gentleman, even though you are NOT. Go "strut your stuff" before some cloned robots like yourself, and don't waste our time. We have "the holy scriptures"; you don't.1
Paging Harold Camping.
But what's to explain? Before someone can even begin to "explain" this pseudo-mathematical loblolly, Dr. Petey has to explain a few things himself. To wit:
- Who is Periander Aban Esplana, and why should I care?
- Why should I expect this apparent mathematical coincidence to have any significance at all?
- Why should we accept that 1 John 5:7 stands for the "end of the Church Age"? I suspect Dr. Petey takes some incomprehensible, hyper-Dispensationalist nitwittery for granted, but I remain not-convinced.
- Does the letter Y count as a consonant or a vowel?
- Does it work for spacing and punctuation as well, or just letters?
- Is this "mathematical miracle" truly unique, or would I find another one if I started searching for it elsewhere in the Bible - or, for that matter, any other English text that I happened to download, like the ridiculous "Bible codes" that were so popular 10 years ago?
More to the point, as I asked in another recent post: What possesses people to start hunting for these arbitrary patterns in the Bible and then ascribing some sort of theological meaning to them? Did it go something like this? "If only there were the same number of letters, consonants, and vowels in the first and last verses of the Bible, and when you added them together, you got the exact letter, consonant and vowel count of 1 John 5:7! That'd sure show those Bible skeptics, wouldn't it. Say, I think I'll try it. Whaaa -? Gasp! I - I don't believe it, it's absolutely true. It's a miracle! I've got to call someone about this. Operator, give me the number for Bible Believers Baptist Church in Pensacola, Florida, and right away, the future of the human race is at stake!" Only, of course, it would be in Tagalog.
Well, you knew I was going to do some fact-checking, didn't you? In fact, Dr. Petey's/Esplana's word/letter count is quite correct.
But wait a minute. It's correct based upon the 1769 KJV - the revision of the KJV text made by Benjamin Blayney that is usually published today. But didn't Dr. Petey say this an "AV 1611" mathematical formula? Does the logo on the Bible Believers' Bulletin not have "AV 1611" on it? Yes, it does.
No fair pulling a bait-and-switch and substituting the wrong Bible! Let's see if this "mathematical miracle" works on the edition of the KJV that Petey says it's supposed to. After all, as KJV-onlyists constantly harp, there's no real difference between revisions of the KJV apart from corrections of spelling or punctuation. Well, suddenly, now we have a "proof" of the KJV's inspiration that relies on the precise spelling of the text, so let's see how it stacks up.
I looked up the images of the original KJV on SCETI, one of my favourite Web sites for this kind of work. Here's the text as it originally appeared in 1611, along with the word, letter, vowel, and consonant counts:
In the beginning God created the heauen, and the Earth. (Gen. 1:1)
Whoops. Thanks to the peculiarities of early-17th-century typography, there's a superfluous vowel in there. That means that this verse has a count of 10 words, comprising 44 letters, of which 18 are vowels and, obviously, 26 consonants. On to the last verse of the Bible:
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. (Rev. 22:21)
This verse is letter-for-letter identical in both editions. Count: 12 words comprising 44 letters, of which 17 are vowels and 27 consonants.
So the total for the first and last verses of the Bible are: 22 words, comprising 88 letters of which 35 are vowels and 53 consonants. It's all up to you, Iohn:
For there are three that beare record in heauen, the Father, the Word, and the holy Ghost; and these three are one. (1 John 5:7)
So sorry. That's 22 words, 89 letters, 36 vowels and 53 consonants.
I guess we'll just have to chalk this one up as yet another crackpot KJV-only goofy proof . . . of nothing.
You gotta laugh
1 Peter S. Ruckman, "A Mathematical Bomb for 'Cloned Robots,'" Bible Believers' Bulletin, Vol. 33 No. 6 (June 2009) (accessed 14 August 2009), 13, 19. Available at http://www.kjv1611.org/BBB/2009/jun-2009.pdf; Internet. Emphasis in original.