18 Facts in the Bible that Predate Scientific Thinking

SharePinEmailThe Bible might not have been created to be a scientific textbook, but much of its content was well ahead of science. The claims the Holy Scriptures make about science are not only true but have proven vital in our understanding of the earth, fossils, and life. Disposing of Waste There are around 17 verses…

The Bible might not have been created to be a scientific textbook, but much of its content was well ahead of science. The claims the Holy Scriptures make about science are not only true but have proven vital in our understanding of the earth, fossils, and life.

Disposing of Waste

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There are around 17 verses in the Bible that focus on the disposal of waste. “And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost,” said John 6:12. Efficient and collective waste disposal in society was introduced much later. In Britain, the Public Health Act of 1848 significantly altered the way that waste was managed, leading to much improved public sanitization.

Unlocking Secrets of Healthy Eating

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In Genesis 1:29, the Bible reminds us how God created fruits and plants to eat, and how they provide vital nutrients for the body. “Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.” While philosophers and scholars have written about nutrition for centuries, modern nutrition science is less than 100 years old. It was not until 1926 that the first vitamin was isolated and chemically defined.

Mental Health and Wellbeing

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It was not until the 18th Century that the science of psychiatry and mental health started to develop. As research was conducted into mental health, changes to how those with psychiatric problems were treated advanced at a fast rate. But the Bible addresses issues related to fear and anxiety, with God promising comfort amid our worries.

Conservation of Energy

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The Bible addresses the first law of thermodynamics and the conservation of energy. The law states that while energy can be changed from one form to another, it can be neither created nor destroyed. In scientific realms, the basics of what we refer to today as the law of conservation of energy were discovered and formulated between 1842 and 1847 by German physician Julius Robert von Mayer, English physician and mathematician James Prescott Joule, and the German physicist and physician Hermann von Helmholtz.

Importance of Cleanliness

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In the late 19th century, people began to realize the relationship between cleanliness and good health. Predating science on the issue of cleanliness, Deuteronomy 23:12-13 read:

Designate a place outside the camp where you can go and relieve yourself. As part of your equipment have something to dig with and when you relieve yourself dig a hole and cover up your excrement.”

Christianity and Circumcision

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The Bible was ahead of the times on infant health, with Leviticus 12:3 commanding that circumcision should be carried out on the eighth day. As a Jew, Jesus was circumcised, and circumcision was a significant issue in the early Christian church.

Moving Light

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It was around 1676, when Ole Roemer, a Danish astronomer, became the first person to prove that light travels at a finite speed, contradicting the ancient belief that it was static. But the Bible, which has many beautiful verses about light, had already suggested that light moves

A Spherical Earth

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The Bible describes a spherical Earth. Isaiah 40:22 cites “the circle of the Earth.” Proverbs 8:27 also references the circularity of Earth. The belief that the Earth was flat was a historical misconception during the Middle Ages.

The Atmosphere Has Weight

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For centuries, civilizations thought the air was weightless. In 1646, an experiment carried out in France confirmed that the atmosphere has weight. But the Bible had alluded to the air having weight, with the book of Job saying that God ‘imparted weight to the wind and meted out the waters by measure.’

Stars Are Infinite

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While ancient civilizations spent a lot of time studying stars and the night sky, there was consensus that there was a limited number of stars. But the Bible pre-empted science, saying that the number of stars in the sky is innumerable.

Addresses the Question of the Origin of the Universe

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The Bible addresses the question of how the universe began. While God created the universe in the Bible text, science argues it was created by the Big Bang, and thereby echoing the Bible in that the universe had a beginning.

All Stars Are Unique

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Each star has a unique makeup, just like our unique fingertips. The Bible suggested as much, with 1 Corinthians 15:41 acknowledging the individuality of each star. Science, however, was slower to catch up, with ancient times believing that stars carried the same characteristics.

Value of Washing Hands

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“He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully,” said Psalm 24: 3-4. The importance of handwashing as a measure of personal hygiene and to curtail disease was not fully understood until the 19th Century, when Hungarian physician and scientist Ignaz Semmelweis, aka the ‘father of hospital hygiene,’ found there were fewer deaths in hospitals when the staff washed their hands.

An Understanding of the Water Cycle

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Text from the Hebrew Bible dated as early as the 10th Century BCE suggests an understanding of the water cycle by Hebrew scholars. However, the process involving cloud formation, evaporation, and precipitation was not fully understood until much later in the 17th Century.

Controlling Disease Through Quarantine

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The Bible describes isolating people with leprosy to prevent the spread of the disease. Isolation and quarantine first became widely practiced in Europe in the 14th Century to control the spread of the bubonic and pneumonic plague.  

Paths to the Sea

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The Bible says there are paths to the sea, suggesting knowledge of ocean currents. American oceanographer Matthew Maury nicknamed the ‘Pathfinder of the Seas,’ as he was considered a founder of modern oceanography. Maury is said to have been inspired by what the Bible said about the movement of the oceans.

The Disappearing of the Dinosaur

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When did the dinosaur disappear has mystified civilizations for centuries. But the Bible seemed to have some answers. Job 40:15–24 said:Look now at the behemoth, which I made along with you; he eats grass like an ox. See now, his strength is in his hips, and his power is in his stomach muscles. He moves his tail like a cedar; the sinews of his thighs are tightly knit. His bones are like beams of bronze, his ribs like bars of iron. He is the first of the ways of God; only He who made him can bring near His sword.”

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