The Message of the Miracle
1 - Introduction
In his peer-reviewed paper, The Ultimate Assertion: Evidence of Supernatural Design in the Divine Prologue*, the author - speaking of the standing miracle which is Genesis 1:1 - concluded his analysis as follows:
These facts speak for themselves: beyond all reasonable doubt they are an eloquent testimony of skilful design and lofty purpose. In order to facilitate the discussion, let us designate the author A, and his motives, M.
It is clear that A has caused a number of independent threads of symmetry, singularity and symbolism to converge in these eight words, in particular, those based upon
the lexical structure of words 1 to 7 - 'surface features' that cleverly hint at the 'hidden treasures' contained in this sequence (speaking here of the fact that 28 - the number of Hebrew letters forming the first verse - is the 7th triangular number, and second perfect number);
the figurate properties of 2701 and its factors, involving the phenomena associated with the first three triangular multiples of 37 (viz. 666, 703 and 2701);
the eighth word, and the resulting augmented verse (speaking here of 302, and the fact that 2701 + 302 = 3003 - the 77th triangular number).
Clearly, A has linked these features visually by calling upon the simplest of all figurate numbers, the triangle.
It may be further observed that
the main attributes of Genesis 1:1 catalogued here derive from running sequences of words - a fact that should not be overlooked in any assessment of probabilities;
clear principles are established - particularly A's partiality for the unique, the eye-catching, and the symbolic;
A's scheme of numerical design rests upon the firmest foundation known to man, namely, mathematics - revealing an awareness that there can be no better basis for an exercise of this kind;
remarkably, features that belong specifically to our present system of numeration appear to have been anticipated by A (for example, the multiples of 3x37 that catch the eye - like 666, 777, 888 and 999 - would not have been visible to numericists working with either Greek or Hebrew schemes of numeration); and
A's scheme makes no great demands of the human intellect, and is open to - and, no doubt, intended for - a wide audience.
For those who will want to determine the identity of A, there is one further fact to consider: it is that A's words were recorded many centuries before the invention of Hebrew alphabetic numeration! Such feats of anticipation, design and execution surely extend far beyond the capabilities of mere mortals!
Finally, for those who would go on to consider M - the purposes that lie behind this display of A's exceptional abilities - the unique and strategic position these words occupy in a large and highly-controversial Book; their direct challenge to the many other ideas now abroad; and the fact that their numerical complement has only recently become more fully known; are essential starting points.
* Creation Ex Nihilo Tech.J., vol.7(2), 1993, pp.184-196
Upon reading the paper, an eminent Professor of Anaesthetics remarked,
"What you do not make clear are your conclusions as to whether any message has been uncovered. It is difficult to understand the purpose of such extreme ingenuity unless some important message was intended."
What, indeed, are we to make of these Aleph-Tau phenomena* (which now have grown to encompass far more than the coordinated numerical geometries of the Bible's opening words)? This important matter is addressed here. However, before embarking upon this formidable task it is appropriate that we turn for guidance to an arena where the discovery of extra-terrestial life forms - particularly those possessing an intelligence superior to our own - is the explicit goal.
*Aleph-Tau - based on the names of the letters forming the untranslatable central word of Genesis 1:1
2. Has life a cosmic dimension?
The current popularity of science fiction testifies to the fact that people in general are fascinated by the possibility that we are not alone in the universe; that 'somewhere out there' other forms of life exist, alien civilisations - some, perhaps, more advanced than our own; and that these, even now, are actively engaged in seeking contact with ourselves and others. Many scientists are convinced that this is not fiction, but fact! - their confidence fuelled largely by an unwavering faith in a theory of origins that assumes chemical and biological evolution to be fundamental truths. Various scientific bodies in the USA - including NASA - are investing much money, time and energy in scanning the heavens systematically for evidence of such life. Underlying these operations is the simple concept that the best way for any intelligent species to attract the attention of another is to do something that is unlikely to occur naturally.
In this connection, it is widely recognised that structures involving the language of number and pattern are the best candidates for this task, for both are independent of time and place. We recall the words of the late Carl Sagan - a prominent researcher in this field, and creator-host of the popular television series Cosmos: "The receipt of a message from space is, even before we decode it, a profoundly hopeful sign." It may be added that it would be eagerly seized upon as PROOF (at last!) that evolution is more than a theory whose 'truth' is shouted at us from all quarters! Clearly, when decoded, it would undoubtedly be numbered among the most important scientific events of all time.
But, as we search the universe for signs of intelligence, are we, perhaps, overlooking evidence closer to home? For example, what of the message found in the human genome? Though far more complicated than any which is likely to be received from the depths of space, this has not resulted in an acceptance of the reality of a supremely intelligent Creator - but is widely accepted as a naturally-occurring miracle! (though few evolutionists would dream of calling it that!). Such interesting anomalies are generally excused on the grounds that no physical evidence can be considered absolute and undeniable proof of God; but, of course, neither can it constitute absolute and undeniable proof of evolution - demonstrating that it is what one already believes that really matters! This truth is further exemplified by the observation that whilst the content of any decoded message from space would almost certainly be accepted as true - despite the fact that nothing would yet be known about the integrity of its source - a simple statement like Genesis 1:1, backed up by the strong evidence of truth and integrity found in the Scriptures, and in lives of those who endeavour to live by them, is rejected as false by the same judges!
These brief remarks serve to highlight a number of accredited principles that we may relate to our own quest, viz.
Man anticipates the existence in other parts of the universe of extremely intelligent beings; he is interested and excited by the prospect;
Assuming such beings exist, he desires to contact them and develop relationships with them and, hopefully, in so doing solve many of his own pressing problems;
He would regard the receipt of a non-random message from space as positive evidence that such interesting alien life forms exist and share these same objectives;
If able to decode the message - which, he anticipates, would be digital in form - he would be able to infer the degree of intelligence of its source.
It might be expected that all who seriously profess "...to follow the truth, no matter where it leads..." (Carl Sagan's advice to his audience) would experience the same interest, excitement and anticipation in respect of the Aleph-Tau Phenomena. Sadly, this is not the case. Almost invariably the response has been a negative one. It turns out that this strange behaviour, in itself, offers a valuable contribution to the matter in hand, and we later return to consider it in more detail. But first, let us move on to a scenario that appears to be consistent with the known facts.
3. A Theory of Divine Intent
The proposition that the Creator would want to underwrite the truth of a statement that He foresaw would, one day, be flatly denied or watered down by the majority of mankind seems eminently reasonable. There can be little doubt that the authority of the Bible as a whole rests, ultimately, upon the authority of its opening verse, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."(Genesis 1:1). Taken at face value these are the received words of a Sovereign God for whom nothing is impossible; a God more than capable of creating all things from nothing in six literal days some six thousand years ago. Yet the sad fact is that over the centuries - and particularly since the 1850s - the biblical account of a special creation has been vigorously denied. Our scientific establishment - discarding its customary rigour - has preferred an explanation of primary origins that does not require the involvement of a Sovereign God - nor any appeal to the miraculous, and though still officially designated theory there can be little doubt that the concept of evolution has itself evolved into hard fact as far as this establishment and the media are concerned. Indeed, this philosophy has become an essential peg supporting a host of other theories and speculations.
Clearly, therefore, for one reason or another people are not readily convinced that they should believe words first recorded more than 3000 years ago. How then is it possible to restore respect and belief in the face of such resistance? Observe that God has already promised to deal effectively with this situation (witness Psalm 2 and Isaiah 29:13-16). Of the many methods at his disposal he has chosen to reaffirm the words of Genesis 1:1 in a unique and wonderful manner, and so confound those who refuse to acknowledge and fear him. It is both interesting and instructive to observe His method:
To carry any weight with an establishment that is largely hostile to his message any verifying principle would need to satisfy at least three important criteria, viz
it would need to be universal in its scope, i.e. be completey independent of language, of intellect, of time and of place;
it would need to appeal strictly to self-evident truth and logical argument, i.e. no step of faith would be required to grasp its import;
it would need to be decisive, i.e. leave no room for doubt that the Creator is its Author.
Only the language of number appears to fulfil these exacting requirements. But how can the words of an ancient language lead _uniquely_ to a meaningful set of numbers? By what generally-acceptable method can this first and crucial step be accomplished?
By arranging that, at the appointed time, Hebrew letters would also function as numerals!
And by what means can such numbers acquire a generally-acknowledged significance?
Simply by taking a prominent and absolute number structure* as a basis, and guiding the development of vocabulary, syntax and semantics to achieve coincidence with it!
Whether or not we believe that God plays such an active role in the affairs of mankind, we must face, squarely, the implications of the empirical evidence presented on this site, and elsewhere. And, in doing so, let us not overlook the fact that the principal object of our attention, Genesis 1:1, is both a challenging and strategically-placed verse! It is indeed difficult to avoid the conclusion that these are all carefully co-ordinated features of purposeful design - intended to meet the demands of a desperate human situation.
There can be little doubt that man's God-given reason, and its proper application, are essential factors in bringing this divine plan to fruition. But - as we have seen - there are disturbing signs that these essentials cannot be taken for granted!
*We shall refer to this structure as Nun-Resh (pronounced 'noon-reysh') - the two letters forming the Hebrew word for 'Lamp'
4. The Human Factor
The truly impartial observer might surely be forgiven for believing that the offer of new and objective evidence regarding the deepest issues of life would be eagerly seized upon by every philosopher and scientist. In the present writer's experience, this is not so. His many attempts to interest eminent people - academics, editors of popular scientific journals and quality newspapers, theologians, and others - in the Aleph-Tau phenomena have met with little success. The Bible maintains that, without exception, the human heart "...is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked..." (Jer.17:9). Can this be true? Is there a better way of explaining the prejudices and double standards of the scientific and intellectual establishment, and its unwillingness to propagate information which should be available to all? Doesn't the present sorry state of the world express the truth of God's comment on man - His once perfect creature, and steward of Creation?
Remarkably, this phenomenon - the Cognitive Dissonance Syndrome (CDS) - is particularly evident in ministers of religion and in those who profess strong religious beliefs. It is the view of this writer that the traditions of the churches can be positive obstacles to God's continuing revelation (for we must not fall into the error of believing that - apart from keeping His promises - He is in any way bound!). Such people may be sincere enough in following their own beliefs but are in danger of becoming immune to the miraculous - hence, rendering themselves unteachable - as far as God is concerned.
The more obvious manifestations of CDS are therefore: for the unbeliever, a denial of God and of all absolutes; for the believer, a refusal to accept that God is Absolutely Sovereign, and might think and act in ways differing greatly from his own.
5. NUN-RESH and its significance
The following two questions have been put to this writer:
5.1 - Are the apparently rare events (as they are found in Genesis 1:1) as rare as they seem, when taken along with the very many alternative events that could equally well have captured out attention?
5.2 - Have you any probability data to support your claims?
Clearly, these deserve our serious attention. That the A-T phenomena are firmly based upon a unique structure of pure number is demonstrated here where NUN-RESH (N-R) is identified as the confluence of many unique and rare numero-geometrical features and associations - in particular, those which directly involve the most symmetrical of all numerical objects, 37.
On the second matter: attention must be drawn to the kinds of evidence presented in our courts of law; there, solemn verdicts are arrived at - but rarely, if ever, on the basis of formal probability calculations!
6. The Author's Identity and Motives
Is it possible that a man - albeit an exceedingly clever man - living more than a thousand years BC could overcome the problems of
6.1 - Feasibility? - involving the discovery of N-R (together with an appreciation of its potential) and the mapping of an intelligible and challenging verse of Hebrew onto it;
6.2 - Anticipation? - bearing in mind that the writing of Genesis 1:1 occurred some centuries before the introduction of the Hebrew alphabetic numering scheme; further, A-T, in many of its features, foretells the development of our present numbering system by more than 3000 years.
Surely, only the Creator could have known of N-R from the beginning. Only He could know how to achieve, and be capable of achieving, the effective underwriting of the words of the first verse of His Word to man! Can there really be any further doubts about the identity of A? It must, therefore, be reasonable to believe that God's motive in all this is to deliver a vital message specifically to our generation - for He is, without doubt, a Sovereign and Purposeful God!
7. The Content of the Message
Because the Aleph-Tau phenomena are an integral part of the Judeo-Christian Scriptures, their purpose must be
Further, let us not overlook the fact that the delivery system used is the opening verse of a unique book - one that is without parallel
- in its continuity - written over a 1600-year span by more than 40 authors drawn from every walk of life
- in its translation and circulation - published in more languages and read by more people than any other book
- in its survival - though persecution and criticism
- in its teachings - its frank portrayal of human character; its laws which are the basis of civlised behaviour; and God's way of salvation
- in its prophecies - many of which have already been fulfilled
- in its influence - on social reform, on literature, and on art and music
What better place can be imagined for so vital a message?! What better language than English to proclaim the message? And what better time than now, when apostasy is rampant?
The message is uncovered by the careful and impartial application of simple logic. It is twofold:
It follows that our earthly existence makes little sense without Him; it also follows that His Word to man - the Bible - must be accepted as true and dependable: it is a gross presumption and folly to make it the subject of critical analysis, or to 'interpret' it in order to satisfy the demands of atheistically-inspired theories.
It manifests itself here as an immediate and adverse reaction to objective evidence that glorifies God, and is not detectable by the normal investigative techniques of psychology; invariably, its effect is to cause mankind to construct and live in a world of make-believe; to suppress questions relating to the deepest issues of life; and, at any price, to avoid facing up to the truth concerning the 'How?' and the 'Why?' of existence.
8. Some Implications
On the basis of this analysis of the verifiable facts surrounding the Aleph-Tau phenomena it is now possible to list some of their many serious implications as, for example
The light shed on such vital issues as these must generate immense and far-reaching effects!
To leave God out of life's equation; to pretend He isn't there, or doesn't care; to underrate His capabilities; leads, ultimately, to futility, madness and disaster! In the A-T phenomena He has graciously provided - amongst other things - a collection of simple visual aids which can lead all thinking people back to Him. However, this step will only become possible when the reality of CDS and its destructive influence is recognised - and overcome.
The sin of apostasy is as old as man himself. It was rife in Israel in the days of Isaiah the prophet, and God - "The Holy One of Israel" - speaking through him - invited the people to "Come now, and let us reason together..." (Isaiah 1:18). The invitation is open to all people of every age. May we accept it, and in humility drink freely of the Fountain of Truth!
Vernon Jenkins MSc