TITLE: DOES THE BIBLE HAVE A HIDDEN MATHEMATICAL STRUCTURE THAT PROVES IT IS OF SUPERNATURAL ORIGIN?
Subtitle: The Discoveries of Ivan Panin Strongly Proclaim It!
There are numerous books on the market today concerning hidden "Bible Codes" and other mathematical phenomena, which are attracting the attention of Christians. Unfortunately, some of these books are only thinly veiled attempts to make money at the expense of truth. But on the other hand there is apparently a growing body of evidence that suggests there is reason to believe the existence of such things. One of the more popular theories now extant concerns the ELS, or "equidistant letter spacing," codes. The premise of this "code" involves selecting every other letter, or every third letter, etc., in a passage of Scripture—particularly the "Torah" (the first five Books of the Old Testament)—in the original Hebrew. Because of the extreme complexity of such an undertaking, modern computers have been programmed to search for messages through such letter sequences. As one might expect, some pretty wild messages have purportedly been found along with "prophecies" relating to future events. It is not my intent to try to promote the hidden code aspect, although I do believe that there is ample evidence to show that there is some related fire and it is not all smoke and mirrors!
Apologetics is the area of theology that deals with a defense of the Christian faith. God and His Word do not need defending, but because of our humanity we are always comforted when we find "proofs" to substantiate our faith--a faith that probably should not engage in such trivialities, but nevertheless it goes on. In my own experience I have found that most Christians, in the early stages of our walk with God, go through a phase or period of preoccupation with things apologetic. I suppose this is only natural, because it does help us to "get a handle" on this thing we call faith. All of us would like nothing better than to confront the atheists, agnostics, and skeptics of the world with overwhelming and irrefutable proof that the Bible is God’s Word and it means exactly what it says! Our flesh—our human nature—would really enjoy popping them right between the eyes with the truth, so that they could not possibly have a comeback. Have you ever had thoughts like these? Boy, I sure have! But to date this has not happened and probably will not until the Lord Himself reigns in the hearts of all men everywhere. Unbelief is so "unbelievably" strong that irrefutable proof is merely a desirable but unachievable goal. However, having said all of this I will now make yet another attempt to supply Christians with apologetic ammunition and give unbelievers something else to deny!
The first time I heard of Ivan Panin was nearly thirty years ago. Someone gave me a tract that outlined his discovery of the "heptadic" structure of the Scriptures (the recurrent phenomena of the number seven associated with the texts of both the Old and New Testament), which he called "Bible Numerics." His findings fascinated me and I began discussing the tract with some friends at church. One of them borrowed my tract and failed to return it—which, as it turned out, deprived me of the basic information because I was not able to find any other sources. It was only until after I acquired a computer and searched the internet that I found what I had been looking for all those years.
Mr. John W. Irwin of Ontario, Canada, (81 Bayview Ridge, Willowdale, Ontario, Canada M2L 1E3) has in his possession the actual hand-written notes of Dr. Panin’s work of a lifetime. When I contacted Mr. Irwin about this information he told me that his dad had been a close friend of Dr. Panin and during WWII accompanied his coffin on the train to Grafton, Massachusetts where he arranged for his burial. He also told me (in response to my question) that even though in recent years Dr. Panin’s work had attracted some criticism and a few attempts to disprove it, no one—to his knowledge—had been able to do so. This just bears out the fact that no matter how strong a case may be, there will always be those who claim they can prove it wrong.
My sole intent with this article is to acquaint you with the findings of Mr. Panin and not to try to add to the excellent articles already available on other sites. If his findings are correct, and I believe they are, this apologetic ammunition should be made known far and wide because it proves to the regenerate mind the supernatural authorship of the Bible. Of course you will have to make this determination for yourself, but the links that follow (coupled with the link to Panin’s own notes given earlier) should give you plenty of information to work with. Check them out and marvel at God’s signature on His handiwork. May He bless you in the search.
Ron Riffe, Cutting Edge Ministries
1. http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/panindx.htm Following the links given on this site, will allow you to take a very close look at Mr. Panin’s work. Articles by Chuck Missler and Grant Jeffery are also included.