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The Gap and The Sumer Creation Myth

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Davy, May 1, 2021.

  1. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Someone on another thread raised the question if the Genesis 1 creation is literal, or just a general story or mythical description. Most often Genesis 1 is taught as being the literal creation of the universe, and of man. There is a deeper view of that though which some pastors and Hebrew scholars are familiar with. And it actually comes from study of Genesis 1 in the Hebrew, along with other related Bible Scriptures. Some call it the Gap Theory.

    In short:
    Genesis 1:1 = God's original perfect creation of the earth and universe. The time of the dinosaurs and fossil evidence of the whole earth being a literal paradise, even the poles being in a tropical state (as shown by the fossil evidence). This was a 1st world earth age.

    Genesis 1:2 = the earth laying in a wasted and ruined state with flood waters covering it, from God's destroying that old world. Something happened in between Gen.1:1 and Gen.1:2 to cause God to destroy that old world. Do you know when it was that Satan first coveted God's throne?

    Genesis 1:3 forward = regeneration of the earth to the state of vanity it is in today. Apostle Paul described this vanity state of the creation in the Romans 8 chapter. God also described it in the Jeremiah 4:23-28 Scripture (which is an insert among warning to Judah through Jeremiah).

    This points to an unknown Gap of time between the Gen.1:1 and Gen.1:2 verses.

    I've asked pastors about this idea, whether they were aware of it, and to my surprise several of them said yes. One pastor looked me straight in the eye and told me that no man showed it to him, that only God showed it to him. I then asked if he taught it to his congregation and he said no, that only a few would understand. So that tells me there are more pastors out there aware of this, but they don't teach it simply because it is not popular, or is controversial. I feel that brethren need to at least know about it.


    The Jeremiah 4:23-28 and Romans 8:18-25 connection:


    In Jeremiah 4:23, the "without form, and void" statement from Genesis 1:2 is repeated. But there it is describing a ruined state of the earth from a destruction by God's anger. Some just pass that off as God warning rebellious Judah in Jeremiah's day of His destroying Jerusalem and Solomon's temple by the king of Babylon. But no, that Jeremiah 4:23-28 Scripture is covering a lot more than that...

    Jer 4:22-28
    22 For My people is foolish, they have not known Me; they are sottish children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

    23 I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.


    24 I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly.

    25 I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled.


    26 I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by His fierce anger.


    27 For thus hath the LORD said, The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end.

    28 For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black: because I have spoken it, I have purposed it, and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it.

    KJV

    There was no man? Certainly not the state of Judea after the king of Babylon's destruction, as some of the poor were left in the land, and a remnant of the house of Judah would return.

    Did you notice the repeat of that, "without form, and void" phrase from Genesis 1:2? Now link that idea to verse 26 above, with the earth having become a wilderness, and all the cities being broken down at God's fierce anger, and you'll be close to what really did... happen upon this ancient earth which caused God to bring a flood of waters upon it at Genesis 1:2.
     
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  2. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Continued...

    The Jer.4:28 verse is unique, and links to what Apostle Paul taught about this in Romans 8 about God placing the creation into a state of corruption. The heavens above being black means what? What color are storm clouds holding moisture? Do you know what causes today's violent weather?

    Most violent weather today is caused by the mixing of hot and cold fronts. Because of holes in our cloud atmosphere around the earth, the sun heats up the earth's surface and low air, and hot air rises. That hot air then mixes with cold air up in higher altitudes, and forms storms and tempests. Water evaporates also and rises. Clouds that hold water turn dark (i.e., "heavens above be black"). That working of today's earth is NOT... God's original perfect creation. The heavens above being black (storms, etc.) is a state of vanity for the earth in this present... 2nd world earth age. In the world to come, the 3rd world earth age when Lord Jesus returns, that state of corruption for the earth will no longer exist...

    Rom 8:18-25
    18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
    19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.

    20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of Him Who hath subjected the same in hope,
    21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
    22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
    23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
    24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?
    25 But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.
    KJV


    You have to have your thinking cap on to realize what Paul said there. In all cases there of the words "creature" or "creation" it's the same Greek word ktisis about God's creation.

    The whole creation today, along with us, awaits the release from bondage of corruption. A comparison of today's state of the earth with the future state of the world to come shows major differences. The future River of the Waters of Life is not just a philosophical idea, it is going to be a literal River upon a renewed earth, like it was in Genesis 2. Same with the Tree of Life, it is actually about literal trees on either side of that River bearing its many fruits that will continually bear in its months (see Ezekiel 47). Revelation 21 tells us there will be no more sea (i.e., oceans and seas). Where's all that water on today's earth going to go?? These are major differences between today's earth in bondage vs. the future new heavens and a new earth.

    What would be 'our' release from corruption of today's world? The putting on of our glorious bodies and being with Jesus, of course. Well, the whole creation also awaits that coming redemption time, and it is going to be put back to the way of God's original perfect creation of Genesis 1:1, before Satan rebelled in coveting God's Throne.

    The thing to really grasp with what Paul said there, is the fact that God placed His creation into a state of vanity. He didn't first create it that way. He later placed it in the bondage state.

    The Hebrew word tohuw of "without form" actually means 'a waste'. In Isaiah 45:18 God said He did not create the earth tohuw (a waste). The KJV translation there has tohuw as "in vain". This means He first created the earth in a non-vanity, non-bondage condition. That is what I mean by His creating of a 'perfect' creation at Genesis 1:1.
     
  3. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    Arnold Fruchtenbaum teaches this he has a book on Genesis and goes into detail on this subject.

    What i like about his teaching is he does not teach this time gap as a place to put dinosaurs or another creation etc..
    But the where satan had his fall, resulting in God judging the earth (original home of satan) He created in Genesis 1:1 and the creation in Genesis 1:3 to 1:31 is actually a creation/restoration of the earth in Genesis 1:1 for human occupation.
     
  4. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The Babylonian-Sumer Creation Account:

    Some call it the Babylonian creation myth. There exists ancient cuneiform Babylonian tablets that give a type of creation account older than The Bible. The tablets predate Biblical texts and the time of Moses who was given to write the Book of Genesis. For this reason of pre-dating The Bible, some believe the Babylonian account is the accurate one. (personally, I think that is foolishness when comparing the Babylonian-Sumer creation account.)

    The Babylonian account is full of mystery and pagan ideology, and only appears close to some of the Genesis 1 events in some ways. The Babylonian account is revealed more as a corruption of the true original account in Genesis.

    There's an old work written in 1927 called Sargon The Magnificent written by Sydney Bristowe, which looks at the evidence the Assyiologists did in translated some of the Babylonian tablets. According to those ancient tablets, one named Sargon appeared among the ancient Sumerians around 3800 B.C., and gave them agricultural knowledge and sciences, and built the very first city there. Per the translation also the Sumerians called him the 'son of Bel' (or son of the dragon).

    Bristowe reveals that the Assyriologists revised the original translation date of Sargon, claiming the tablet scribe made an error. Bristowe suggests the actual first translation the Assyriologist made was the accurate one, which was around 3800 B.C. They instead changed it to around 2750 B.C. Why is this important?

    Bristowe suggests that Sargon which the ancient tablets mention was most likely Cain, and ancient Sumer was the real "land of Nod" where Cain went to, and built the first city.

    Strong evidences that Bristowe might be correct -
    1. Sargon's death mask reveals his features were Semitic, a different race than the Sumerians.

    2. Bible scholars like Bishop Ussher (17th century), and E.W. Bullinger (19th century), who did Bible chronologies from the time of Christ back to Adam, place God forming Adam in His Garden at 4004 B.C. (see Annals of The World by Ussher, and The Companion Bible by Bullinger). How many years difference is 4004 B.C. from 3800 B.C.? It's only 204 years difference. That strongly suggests Sargon I may have actually been Cain.

    3. The Babylonian creation account having similarities to the Genesis account, with the Babylonian one showing pagan beliefs suggest The Bible Genesis account is the REAL account. The Babylonian tablet account merely reveals it as a 'corruption' of the real Genesis account. This could suggest that someone brought a corrupted account of the Genesis creation to ancient Sumer. Who else other than Cain would have that Genesis creation account that was cast away from Eden to the land of Nod?

    4. The very first pagan idolatry religion was with Sargon I in ancient Sumer-Babylon with Bel (later as Baal). Per the tablet translation, Sargon was called the 'son of Bel'. That would relate directly to Cain having rebelled in killing his brother Abel, and thus associated with the devil, or dragon.

    5. Cain built the very first city per Genesis. Sargon built the very city in ancient Sumer per the tablet account.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2021
  5. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't really classify the Genesis 1:3 forward events as another creation, but as a regeneration. I believe Genesis 1:1 was God's original perfect creation of the heavens and the earth. And then sometime between verse 1 and verse 2 Satan rebelled, and God destroyed that old world with waters of a flood, which is the state of the earth at Genesis 1:2.

    We know Satan had already rebelled and been cast down by the time of Adam and Eve, because he was already in his role as adversary tempting Eve in God's Garden. So his rebellion had to have taken place sometime prior to Adam and Eve. That suggests the time of his rebellion took place before Adam and Eve in God's Garden. That certainly would mean prior to the 6th day of Genesis 1 when God created man. A look at the Jer.4:23 relation of "without form, and void" and the destruction by God described there suggests Satan rebelled sometime before Genesis 1:2. Look at Ezekiel 31 as a parable about the time before he rebelled, and then after.
     
  6. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Concerning the time of dinosaurs, I don't believe evolution theory at all, so I'm not into all that. But I will admit that dinosaurs actually did once exist upon this earth. Not only that, but I also agree with science's dating of perfect human arch footprints fossilized along inside dinosaur footprints, both preserved together. Those have been found in the southwest U.S., in France, etc. That evidence suggests to me that the original perfect creation of Genesis 1:1 was one with the angels living on earth, those ancient footprints being left by those angels.
     
  7. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    Unless there is some kind of explanation for a time gap, it isn't a theory at all. :)

    All we can determine from Scripture is that Satan had fallen when the first 2 humans appeared there in the Garden. However, we know from Ezek 28 that Satan was in the Garden before he rebelled, so we can expect his rebellion was before the creation of humanity.

    I would describe Gen 1:3 and forward as a restoration of the planet.

    Actually, a close study of the Hebrew of 1:2 is clear enough.

    I disagree. It isn't the understanding that is difficult, but getting over the controversy of it all.

    Unfortunately, Ken Hamm of "Answers in Genesis" fame and the Creation Museum seems not to be able to separate an "old earth" from evolution. While evolution absolutely requires (demands) an old earth, an old earth in no way requires evolution. But Ken Hamm seems to lump every "old earther" into the category of evolutionists.

    Sadly, they are cowards, afraid of preaching the truth simply because it is controversial.

    Looks like you've done a good bit of research on the subject. As I have done.

    The basic issue is what v.2 actually says in the Hebrew. Without going into all the details, this is what v.2 says in the original:

    But, the earth became a desolate waste place, and darkness was over the surface of the deep and the Spirit of God was brooding over the waters.

    If the "standard" rendering of v.2 is true, then there is a definite contradiction with Isa 45:18, which states that "the earth was not created "tohu". That is the exact same word in Gen 1:2 for "without form".

    So, either God created the earth (v.1) "tohu" (v.2) or He didn't (Isa 45:18). Can't have it both ways.

    The ONLY solution is to realize that v.2 has been woefully translated.

    And the septuagint begins v.2 with "but" as a contrast, rather than a simple continuation as the "standard" rendering has.

    And the word translated "was" is translated at "became/become" in about 60% of the time in the rest of the NT. And I am speaking of the same EXACT form of the word 'hayah'. It was translated as "was" in only about 6% of the time, including v.2.

    What is clear from v.2 is that something DID happen to earth, which God then restored.

    No theory. Just good exegesis from the Hebrew.
     
  8. Dkh587

    Dkh587 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The gap theory falls apart very quickly because Exodus 20:11 clearly tells us that God created everything in 6 literal days.

    Exodus 20:11
    For in six days Yahweh made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is

    Genesis 1:1
    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

    There is no gap - it’s merely a fantasy.
     
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  9. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    That's what many call it, so that's just a label, doesn't detract from the idea really.

    Ezekiel 31 is also a parable hinting at Satan's status before he rebelled.

    Well, we all have a hard time giving up long-held traditions that were thought to be true, some more than others.

    I agree. Many against this from Scripture rely on defeating it by trying to link it to man's theory of evolution, when it has nothing to do with evolution theory. I asked the one pastor, what about those few that would understand? Why not still preach it since God gave it to them too?

    It's interesting how that Hebrew word tohuw ("without form") is used in other OT Scripture too. Often it is used about something that originally was in a good condition that went to a corrupt state, or to nothing.
     
  10. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Well, the Exodus 20 Scripture is... true, regarding this 2nd world earth age, a regeneration from destruction of the previous world when Satan originally rebelled.

    Many also misunderstand the first world earth age that Apostle Peter taught:

    2 Peter 3:5-6
    5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:

    6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:
    KJV


    Most think that was about the flood of Noah's day. It's not. It's about this...

    Gen 1:9
    9 And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.
    KJV


    Peter's idea of "the earth standing out of the water and in the water; 6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished," is about that Genesis 1:2 event and the later event of God moving those waters upon the earth to make that dry land appear. It means that 'dry land' was already there, underneath all those waters.

    Furthermore, when Peter said there, "that by the word of God the heavens were of old," he is speaking of Genesis 1:1 with the beginning, when God first created the original heavens and earth! Peter was not pointing to this 2nd world earth age of Adam's day with that. Peter was describing the earth at Genesis 1:2, with a previous flood God caused, long before Noah's time.

    Then Peter described this present 2nd world earth age, which began at Genesis 1:3 forward...

    2 Peter 3:7
    7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
    KJV
     
  11. JulieB67

    JulieB67 Well-Known Member

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    I think this is what most people miss. That people are willingly ignorant by the word of God that the heavens were of old. People just assume yes, that this is talking about Noah's flood but that time frame would not make the heavens and earth old. And no Christian is ignorant about Noah's flood. That's when you realize that there was an age before this one. And then the Bible itself begans to open up many truths, etc and things began to fall in place if one has eyes to see.
     
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  12. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    It is your theory that falls apart. You haven't discerned the difference between the Hebrew words 'asah' (made) and 'barah' (create).

    In Ex 20:11 we find the word 'asah'. It means to make out of existing materials.
    In Gen 1:26 we find the same word the Godhead used for "let Us MAKE (asah) man in our image".

    However, in Gen 1:27 the verse uses 'barah' as in and God created man.

    Barah means to create out of nothing. For we know that God SPOKE the worlds into existence.

    Psa 33:9 - For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm.

    So why the difference between v.26 and v.27? v.26 speaks of man's physical body, which was made out of the "dust of the ground", or existing materials, while v.27 speaks of man's soul, which was created out of nothing.

    So Ex 20:11 supports the restoration of planet earth, which was accomplished in 6 literal days. :)

    The word for 'created' is 'barah', meaning God created the heaven and earth out of nothing. He simply spoke the universe into existence.

    Using lexicons goes a long way towards understanding the truth.

    There IS a time gap. v.2 has been very poorly translated.

    Corrected: BUT the earth BECAME tohu (an uninhabited wasteland).

    I recommend biblehub.com which allows one to not only see the Hebrew words, but where each form of the word occurs in the entire OT. Very revealing and informative.

    Anyone can do the easy research I have done and wlll come up with the same evidence as I have.
     
  13. sandman

    sandman Senior Member

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    Actually……the gap theory does not fall apart…and in your post you point out the discrepancy to what you were stating.

    Create and made are not synonymous.


    Create = bara in Hebrew - The word created is to bring something into existence that did not exist before, or to make something out of nothing. Only God can create; man can fabricate, build, construct, design, make, assemble, etc.… but man cannot create. Once God creates something He does not need to create it again, because it now exists…. He can just speak it into being.

    **Made = asah in Hebrew – a substance required of which the thing made consists.

    **Formed = yatsar in Hebrew - fashioned out of something that was already in existence.



    God created the heavens and the earth in Genesis 1:1

    God did not create anything again until the 5th day when He created soul life in “great whales and every living creature (chay nephesh) that moveth”… Everything else between 1:2 and 1:21 was made, (spoken back into existence) because it had already been created.
     
  14. RickReads

    RickReads Well-Known Member

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    The word day often depicts a period of time in the Bible. Not necessarily 24 hours. I think the idea of 6 literal days is both questionable and unimportant.

    The sequence is the thing I believe that merits attention.
     
  15. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    Let's look at what Scripture says in Genesis 1-

    5 God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.
    8 God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day.
    13 And there was evening, and there was morning—the third day.
    14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years,
    19 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fourth day.
    23 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fifth day.
    31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.

    And, Genesis 2-
    2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.
    3 Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.

    When the words "evening and morning" are included in specifying specific days, I think it is stretching things quite a bit to say the Bible didn't really mean 24 hour days.

    Of course it did.

    But the real issue is that the bulk of Genesis 1 isn't about original creation, but rather the restoration of planet earth. God restored earth in 6 literal 24 hour days. And rested on the 7th literal day. The Bible plainly says so.
     
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  16. RickReads

    RickReads Well-Known Member

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    Genesis 2:4 indicates it was a period of time, an age, not simply a 24 hour period of time so its not a stretch of any kind to question your 24-hour theory of creation.

    And upon further review, Genesis 1:14 by implication casts a difference between a creation/restoration day and a literal day.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2021
  17. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    2:4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, when the LORD God made the earth and the heavens.

    Nope. It does NOT say anything of the sort.

    I think you quite missed the point of v.14 - 14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years,

    The point is, in the middle of the account, with every day identified by "evening and morning" along with a specific day numbered, v.14 mentions "days and years".

    So actually, your "review" fails to grasp the point. The account of the restoration is literally 24 hours days.

    You haven't shown otherwise.
     
  18. RickReads

    RickReads Well-Known Member

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    You miss the point. It cannot be conclusively proven so it's irrelevant except to Sabbath-keepers which is what I suspect your real hangup is.

    2:4 These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens.
     
  19. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    You have no idea. I have no 'hang-up'. That's just a cheap shot on your part.

    The very words of Genesis 1 and 2:4 PROVE the days are literal. But since you would rather ignore or outright reject what "evening and morning" refers to, what else is there to say?

    So, what translation is this? Have you researched all the available English translations, or just cherry picked one that suits you?

    2:4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, when the LORD God made the earth and the heavens. NIV.

    And you have to ignore 1:14 with the specific mention of days and years.
     
  20. sandman

    sandman Senior Member

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    I understand how you might draw your inference of it being a time period from 2:4. But in actuality that verse should begin verse 1 of chapter 2. While I am extremely thankful for verses chapters and punctuation that were added prior to the 17th century they are not God breathed and should be regarded as such. The division of chapters between 1 & 2 is somewhat odd as most researchers agree that chapter 1 should end at verse 3 of chapter 2, and chapter two should start at verse 4.


    Regardless … whenever the Bible uses the word day or evening alone it can indicate all or a portion of the day or of the evening.

    But when the Bible uses the words day (morning) and evening (night) together, it always indicates a complete day of 24 hours, which is why the “traditional” time period of the death and resurrection of Jesus from Friday to Sunday am….. falls apart. (Wed before sunset… to Saturday before sunset is the appropriate time frame of Jesus being in the heart of the earth)….

    Matt 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2021
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