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**In particular, we look at 1 Kings, 7:23.
**

The King James Bible presents it this way:

And he made a molten sea, ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about,

and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.

The term “sea” here refers to a large circular tank, but that is not the interesting part. Rather, it is the part about the tank

being ten cubits across and thirty in circumference. Every high school geometry student knows that the circumference of a

circle divided by its diameter gives you pi. In this case, we have a circumference of 30 and a diameter of 10. That implies

that pi equals three. But, actually, pi doesn't equal three.

The Mesopotamians of a much earlier era used the approximate value of 25/8 = 3.125.

Pi = 3

The next “proof” that purportedly demonstrates that the Bible is scientifically unreliable comes from the description of the

furnishings of Solomon’s Temple.

We read:

Then he made the sea of cast metal. It was round, ten cubits from brim to brim, and five cubits high, and a line of thirty

cubits measured its circumference. (1 Kings 7:23)

**Aha! A circumference of thirty and a diameter of ten means pi =30/10 =3. Either Solomon’s Temple was built in Indiana or
**

we have a serious problem.

Or do we?

(The sea, by the way, was a humongous brass basin almost certainly used by the priests for ceremonial washings)

http://helives.blogspot.com/2006_01_01_helives_archive.html#113681403635369032

**However, even if we assume that the sea was a perfect circle, there is no problem.
**

For even if it was perfectly circular, it was not infinitely thin.

**The figure on the left shows a scale drawing, assuming the precise measurements as provided.
**

To put things in everyday perspective, we have converted from cubits to feet using the relationship that 1 cubit is about

18 inches. The problem is that the given diameter of 10 cubits (or a radius L of 5 cubits) extends beyond a circle with

circumference 30 cubits, which has a radius of R = 4.77 cubits, by, as shown, an amount ∆.

A simple calculation shows that ∆ ≈ 4.1 inches.

for example.65 = 3. giving us information on its total size. The gourds were in two rows. and three facing east.14. as long as verse 26 in addition to verse 23.Is this plausible? Let’s continue on with the biblical passage. In verse 26 we are told that its thickness was a handbreadth. and its brim was made like the brim of a cup. to the nearest cubit) was 30 ÷ 10 = 3. suggesting the curvature of a lily.32 ÷ 9. i. the brim or rim turned outward. and look at further descriptive details: 1 Kings 7:24-26 24 Under its brim were gourds. or a rim 'like the rim of a cup. three facing south. The ratio of true circumference to true diameter would then have been 30. with flowers of lilies' (KJV). The Hebrew cubit was about 45 centimetres (18 inches). It held two thousand baths. for ten cubits. cast with it when it was cast. which is consistent with the conceptual drawing. But what if the sea had some thickness? And what if.6 cubits diameter gives 30.answersingenesis. meaningless.asp Reading 1 Kings 7:23 from the Bible again If the actual diameter was 9. the true value for pi. ******************************* http://www. as in the artist’s conception shown below. 2. We are also told that the brim was like the brim of a cup. 25 It stood on twelve oxen. while the circumference could be the inner circumference. three facing west. even with a literal reading. and so on). like a lily blossom' (NIV). it was even flared at the rim? Then the 10 cubits could refer to the “outside” distance across. The actual circumference would then have been 30.org/creation/v17/i2/pi. which is based on a infinitely thin perfect circle. like the flower of a lily.e. which fits nicely with the value of ∆ ≈ 4.65 cubits. this would have been reckoned as 10 cubits. three facing north. This would have been reckoned as 30 cubits (9. The sea was set on them. . 26 Its thickness was a handbreadth.14 circumference. and all their rear parts were inward.e.1 inches. even though the measured value (i. is taken into account. A cubit was the length of a man's forearm from the elbow to the extended fingertips.3 It is believed by Bible scholars to have looked like the drawing below. compassing the sea all around. Either or both of these effects renders the criticism. just after where the dimensions are provided. The numbers given are perfectly compatible. telling us about the sea’s capacity. Verse 26 of 1 Kings 7 says that the vessel in question had a brim which 'was wrought like the brim of a cup.32 cubits.

236 Furthermore.55 cubits. 3.24. 2. 16/5 ( 9.0. 'round about' (v.html Indiana bill sets the value of pi to 3 The bill House Bill No. These are: 1. and in particular it does not say that pi equals 3. The circumference of 30 cubits was measured with a line. as it represents the circles area one and one-fifths times the area of a square whose perimeter is equal to the circumference of the circle.55 cubits. 3.e. Bit tricky to decipher. below the brim.e.5 It is thus abundantly clear that the Bible does not defy geometry with regard to the value of pi. 23). The diameter employed as the linear unit according to the present rule in computing the circle's area is entirely wrong. the most natural meaning of these words is that they refer to the circumference of the outside of the main body of the tank. sqrt(2) = 10/7 = 1. ****************************** http://www.ca/~alopez-o/math-faq/mathtext/node18.uwaterloo. 3.14 = 9. sqrt(2) : pi/2 = 7 : 8 i. which is as seven to eight. That the ratio of the diameter and circumference is as five-fourths to four i. 1897. Thus the external diameter of the vessel at the point where the circumference was measured must have been 9. but it seems to say ((2 pi'/4))^26/5 = pi i.429. it has revealed the ratio of the chord and arc of ninety degrees. The diameter of 10 cubits was measured 'from brim to brim' (v. pi = 16/5 = 3. as the area of an equilateral rectangle is to the square on one side.Let us consider the details given in 1 Kings 7:23 and 2 Chronicles 4:2.cs. It has been found that a circular area is to the square on a line equal to the quadrant of the circumference. pi' : ((pi'/2))^2 = sqrt(3)/4 : 1 i.e. pi' = 2 sqrt(5 pi/6) = 3.) sqrt(2)' = 10/7.2 respectively. Indiana State Legislature. reportedly set the value of pi to an incorrect rational approximation. pi = 16 sqrt(2)/7 = 3.e. i.e.e. The bill implies four different values for pi and one for sqrt(2). For a measured circumference of 30 cubits. from the topmost point of the brim on one side to the topmost point of the brim on the other side (points A and B in the diagram).e. 2 sqrt(5 pi/6).236 . 16 sqrt(2)/7.2 . This is because one-fifth of the diameter fails to be represented four times in the circle's circumference. pi' = 16/sqrt(3) = 9.24 . And it is also obvious that the circumference of 30 cubits could have been measured at any point down the vertical sides of the vessel. as follows: pi' = 16/sqrt(3).232 And also the ratio of the diagonal and one side of a square which is as ten to seven i. It is very obvious that the diameter of the main body of the tank was less than the diameter of the top of the brim. 23). measured by a string pulled tightly around the vessel below the brim.232 . we can calculate what the external diameter of the vessel would have been at that point from the formula diameter = circumference ÷ pi = 30 cubits ÷ 3. i. 246.

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