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Question: Do you believe in the validity of the Bible Code idea presented in this story?  (Voting closes: May 13, 2015, 07:14:46 PM)
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Author Topic: Decoding Bible's 'cryptogram'  (Read 638 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: April 04, 2011, 07:14:46 PM »

Decoding Bible's 'cryptogram'Will Saddam Hussein be overthrown? Where is Osama bin Laden hiding? For answers, see the Good Book
Ron Csillag, National Post, March 31, 2003, http://www.stevequayle.com/News.alert/03_Global/030408.Bible.code.Saddam.html

Author Michael Drosnin believes the Bible, which includes the story of Moses, holds prophetic codes. Among the hundreds of meetings and briefings that took place in the Pentagons bowels in the months leading up to Operation Iraqi Freedom, one earned the fleeting disdain of The New York Times, whose columnist, Bill Keller, sniffed that "several man-hours of valuable intelligence-crunching time" had been "consumed [by a writer] who claims -- I am not making this up -- that messages encoded in the Hebrew text of the Old Testament provide clues to the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden.

"Maybe were all a little too desperate these days for a simple formula to explain how our safe world came unhinged," Keller said. The gathering, which reportedly took place Feb. 21, was said to have been convened by Paul Wolfowitz, the hawkish U.S. Deputy Secretary of Defence, and attended by 10 top military intelligence officials, including Vice Admiral Lowell "Jake" Jacoby, director of the massive Defense Intelligence Agency, and Wolfowitz's deputy, Linton Wells, who is in charge of the Pentagon's nerve centre, known as 3CI (Command, Control, Communications).

On the eve of war, the military brass listened intently for a full hour as Michael Drosnin expounded on his two brisk-selling volumes on the Bible code.

Drosnin argues the Hebrew Torah -- the first five books of the Old Testament -- were intentionally encrypted, by a higher power, with prophetic warnings that have accurately predicted the Great Depression, the Second World War, the Kennedy assassinations, the moon landing, Watergate, and 9/11 -- and foretell the fall of Saddam Hussein and the precise location of bin Laden.

Earlier, sinjinsmythe posted this story on a thread, and I moved it here because it was off-topic there. My review is below.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2011, 07:17:32 PM by rakovsky » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2011, 07:18:45 PM »


Thanks for posting the article about the Bible Code.

It's a weird topic. On one hand, the Bible is a holy book, but on the other hand, the Bible Code sounds like it could be something of a ouji board approach to it, so to speak. The criticisms were really good I thought, first that the Bible itself speaks against such methodology, and second that the Bible wasn't written exactly word for word in its current form originally.

It sounds silly too that the leaders would take this so seriously that they would call a big meeting about it. They should just have some people look into it and act on it if helpful. It doesn't seem like something extremely insightful and certain and all-encompassing that it would require their attention, unless the experts gained some specific information that qualified.

For example, ok let's say they know where a bad guy is from it, they can just send some guys to catch him.

Anyway, I got a sense from the critical voices cited in the article that they felt it was like an arbitrary crossword puzzle. This word X matches what I know about word Y, so it goes together. Word L is in the cluster, but I don't see a connection, so I won't pay much attention to it.

Another problem is that the Bible is supposed to be read with love and faith, but instead the interpretation in the article just seems to be a nonreligious researcher's ideas about militaristic events.

The article says:
Drosnin discounts the religious angle. "This is not based on faith. This is based on experience. The code keeps coming true."

Well, that sounds persuasive. Except I have a sense that most of the stuff he finds is white noise, so to speak, that he discards. I mean, the Bible can be stretched into one very long line, which is what he says he does.

I could create a system that really isn't some "matrix," except where I arbitrarily chooses to break a line into two lines.

Like the sentence:
This is a short sentence.
can be broken into
This is
a short sentence
Someone can perceive that "is" lines up in the matrix with "short". But I assure you that when I wrote it I intended no such combination.

Or how about:
I assure you that
when I wrote it
I intended
such combination.
So there's a matrix that says I did.

Such a method feels like an arbitrary, unreliable way to read something. But I am just making this up to show that a matrix doesn't necessarily give the right message.

OK, here's how they say they work in the article:
Suppose we start with the sentence, "All of our avenues are wide." To locate an ELS, we eliminate the spaces and look for words that could be formed from letters that are equally spaced within the string of letters that form the sentence.

So, if we start with the second letter (L) and then skip three letters to pick up the next letter of the code (O), and so forth, we find the word LOVE within the string: a L l o f O u r a V e n u E s a r e w i d e.
Maybe that doesn't show anything, because we don't know whether the article author intended to include such a word. However, it's worth pointing out that if you follow the "code" all the way in the example, you actually get "LOVEEE."

OK, how about Ilikethisglass. Want to find hidden codes? LOL I am teasing rhetorically, because I didn't intend to put any in. So it's silliness.

Let's look again at his words:
"This is not based on faith. This is based on experience. The code keeps coming true."
OK, let's check:
apparently, the Big One is coming. Drosnin's most dire warning yet contains the words "world war," "atomic holocaust" and "end of days" all in the close vicinity of "2006." (Note the similarity to Newton's year of doom).
2006 has gone with no such happening. Drosnin could reply that the topics were in the news and make a rebuttal, it just seems somewhat arbitrary and subjective.

The thing about Iraq sounds persuasive, except that Sadam wasn't actually destroyed in 2003, but later, although his army was officially destroyed then, except for insurgent groups.

The alleged "codes" about Rabin, the wtc, and the sages sounds persuasive, on the other hand. Plus, the mathematicians' support for the idea sounds persuasive, especially when the US researcher, Gans, corroborated it.

On the other hand, it sounds stupid when the article claims that Gans corroborated it, but then says that:
both Rips and Gans have distanced themselves from Drosnin's conclusions, saying using the Torah codes to predict the future is unfounded, futile and of no value.

Plus, I agree with Levy's remark "You could probably do this with a newspaper." In fact, there are somewhat crazy people who read newspapers in ways they think are prophetic codes. It's weird, I know.

I just think that whether you believe that the newspaper or Bible is saying what you view its code to mean actually is a matter of faith. I mean, ok, you can get an entertaining idea from the Bible Code, and that idea can line up with a real future occurrence, but that doesn't mean that the scriptures are actually "saying" that idea, in the everyday way of understanding something.

For one to accept that the Bible actually says the "Bible Codes," one has to accept that the Bible-Code-method is a valid way to read the Bible. And for me, it seems to have the same kind of validity as the Greek oracles, or Chinese tea leaves or turtle shells. It's validity in my mind is only greater inasmuch as I value the Bible as having inherently more mystical power than a turtle shell. But even then, one could rationally take the view that if such an interpretation of the Bible sometimes gives wrong results, then putting faith- which is what it would really be, however well supported- in such a method goes against the Bible's sense.

The absence of discussion in pre-Christian Judaism and in Christianity, at least the absence of a record of such discussion, goes against such a matrix of interpretation being valid.

Anyway, just writing about it critically feels like ranting, which feels like a reflection of its frustrating arbitrariness and unreliability.

I expected that some people would find references to Jesus in the Bible Codes. Some Bible Code researchers found 20 references to Jesus in Isaiah 53, and another 20 in Psalm 22:

Here's another strong, persuasive-sounding claim:
"More than 2,750 ELSs concerning Jesus Christ have been discovered in the Genesis-Exodus cluster. To date, the Isaiah 53 cluster, within a passage many scholars acknowledge to be prophetic of the Messiah, has yielded approximately 1,500 codes concerning the last days of Christ." (http://www.biblecodedigest.com/page.php/78)

One doubt I have is that the Bible Code researchers often find supposed "codes" that they disagree with in content, so they reject them and don't mention to their readers about them. For a humorous example, maybe there is a supposed Bible Code that says "Hey people, you shouldn't listen to that Moses guy."

In fact, I believe there are many webpages that connect the supposed Bible Codes with Jesus, following the method. But if the Bible Code method was so convincing, then Drosnin wouldn't be a secular Jew, but rather a Christian, because the Christian results I see are persuasive in their presentation.

So it seems like maybe Drosnin believes in it enough to warn people based on, but not enough to actually become religious.

One criticism that sounds likely real is that
the ELS Hebrew 'Bible Code' of Michael Drosnin and Eli Rips, which is not a bible code at all but rather a statistical trick which works on any long book given a free choice of vowels, (see http://cs.anu.edu.au/~bdm/dilugim/moby.html and http://www.math.caltech.edu/code/petition.html)

This site has a somewhat humorous, irreverant-to-religion debunk of the Bible Code idea:
« Last Edit: April 04, 2011, 07:19:35 PM by rakovsky » Logged
Pegleg J
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« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2011, 07:30:52 PM »

That's a blast from the past! I think I read that 11 or 12 years ago, when I went searching for more info (both pro and con) after I had read some book on the concept of a Bible code.

I'll bet I look like a goof.

"And since when have Christians become afraid of rain?"
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« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2011, 08:17:57 PM »

That's a blast from the past! I think I read that 11 or 12 years ago, when I went searching for more info (both pro and con) after I had read some book on the concept of a Bible code.

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« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2012, 11:20:13 AM »

If you can speak one language, does that mean that you can speak all other languages, and do so without having to learn any of these other languages?

If in world war two, a spy sent encoded information to his home country, does that mean that the enemy can instantly read this code language because all code languages are alike?

Obviously not. In truth, all languages, code or not, are all different.

However, in the land of Bible Codes, one Bible Code language was analyzed by statistical analysis experts, and the conclusion quickly drawn was that "Bible Codes" were just a farce, just coincidental, just plain bogus, thus END OF BIBLE CODE STORY. These statistical analysis experts, with their PhD's in this and that, in short had foolishly concluded that if you examine just one code language, just ONE, you are therefore examining all other endless numbers of possible code languages at the same time.

Sadly, most religious folk of today, instantly fell for such trickery, even though this ONE encoding language was the sloppiest most unreliable encoding language that anyone could have ever dreamed up.

From then onward, the general practice of "Reject before Inspect", was applied to any other Bible Code Language.

How and why is it that people have been so easily duped?HuhHuh?

Thus once again one asks the question, "If you can speak one language, does that mean that you can speak all other languages, and do so without having to learn any of these other languages?".

In the Bible Code world so far, the answer has been, YES !
« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 11:23:36 AM by JesuisSean » Logged
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