Where did 607 come from?

by MrFreeze 100 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • MrFreeze

    Okay so we've obviously established on this board that 607 is not the correct date that Babylon destroyed Jerusalem. So where did 607 come from? Even before 1914 came around, the Bible Students still thought 1914 would be a pivital date. The only way they can gain that info is from the 7 times or w/e. The 2520 days (or years as they put it). Why did they decide to use 607 as the date?

    Also, another interesting point to consider is that they are going by the 7 times, with 360 days per year. Well if they are considering each year to be 360 days (as was the way they went about it back then), then it would equal out to be less years by the amount of days we go by now. Think about that. I'm not sure when we started counting years as 365 days but that would throw off the end date of the 2520 years, wouldn't it? Does what I'm saying make any sense? I'm trying to explain what I'm thinkng but I can't find the right words to put it down in writing to explain what I mean.

  • mentallyfree31

    John Aquila Brown wrote about the 2,520 years prophecy before Charles Russell was born. His book was called "The Even Tide". But his span of dates was 604 BCE - 1917 CE. I can't remember what his 604 date was all about, and if it had anything to do with Jerusalem or some other event.

    However, I do remember that Russell accepted the date of 1874 as the invisible return of christ. And there would be a 40 year harvest period, thus culminating in 1914 with Armageddon.

    Sooooo, perhaps he just counted backwards from 1914 and reached 607 BCE.

    Disclaimer: I do not have all the facts about this. This is merely a possibility. Please do not take this as a fact, because it is just some bits and pieces that I remember from reseraching Russell and 607 BCE a while back.


  • MrFreeze

    It sounds like something that could be true but verificiation would be nice. I'm sure somebody on this board knows. A brother in my hall gave a public talk about it today, complete with visual diagrams and a laser pointer!

  • dgp

    I understand that the book "The Gentile Times Reconsidered" gives you the facts.

  • mentallyfree31

    Yes, i forgot about that dgb. Carl Oloff Johnson's book "The Gentile Times Reconsidered". I haven't read it yet, but I have it and will read it soon hopefully.


  • scholar


    Post 71

    We owe a great debt to the 'celbrated' WT scholars who have given to the world of mankind a very accurate Bible chronology which champions the correct date of 607 BCE for the Fall of Jerusalem which falsifies the impossible and incorrect dates of 586, 587 and others for the Fall of Jerusalem. You ask concerning the origin of 607 BCE?

    The corrected or adjusted date of 607 BCE was first published in 1944 in the publication The Kingdom Is At Hand which nicely brought Biblical scholarship up to date. No doubt one of the influences for such an adjustment in Bible chronology was brought about by advancing research in Babylonian chronology by such eminent scholars as Richard Parker and Waldo Dubberstein who published their Babylonian Chronology 626 BC - AD 45in 1942. This period of the forties was groundbreaking in various fields of Bible schoilarship and along with further insights into biblical revelation led to many refinements in not just chronology but also translation of the Bible along with eschatiology.

    scholar JW

  • St George of England
    St George of England
    Sooooo, perhaps he just counted backwards from 1914 and reached 607 BCE.

    Not really. In fact if you check the old WT's you will see that up until c1943, the date for the fall of Jerusalem was always quoted as 606 BCE. Then they realised about the zero year and instead of moving the answer (1914) to 1915, they moved the destruction of Jerusalem back a year to 607 BCE.


  • teel

    @scholar, I read through your first paragraph, and all the while thought you're being sarcastic. Then I saw it's you... My memory might be failing, but I don't think I ever saw you providing actual references to who 'celebrates' those scholars outside the WTS.

    The corrected or adjusted date of 607 BCE was first published in 1944

    Now a bit ontopic: what scholar fails to mention that 'corrected' in this sentence means it took about 70 years for those 'celebrated scholars' to realize there was no year 0 between 1 BC and 1 AD No, this is not a joke. 607 was adjusted from 606 BC, which was supported just as much as 607 is now, and they calculated 2520 years to arrive to 1914, counting year 0 too.

    So the question in the topic should really be: where did 606 come from? How did they juggle with those 70 years that they use now to 'prove' 607, to arrive at 606 back then?

  • Old Goat
    Old Goat

    From the book Nelson Barbour: The Millennium's Forgotten Prophet (available at lulu.com) :

    Barbour and his associates did not immediately reconsider Gentile Times. The issues of an invisible parousia and other chronological speculations came first. We also do not know who among them initiated the discussion. In the absence of other claims, it is probably safe to suppose that Barbour was responsible for concluding Gentile Times ended not in the 1870s, but in 1914. The first mention of the 1914 date as the end of The Times of the Gentiles is in the September 1875 issue of The Herald of the Morning. In passing Barbour remarked, “The time of the Gentiles,” viz. Their seven prophetic times of 2520 years ... which began when God gave all into the hands of Nebuchadnezzar, in 606 B. C; do not end until 1914.

    Barbour is indebted to John Aquila Brown for the 2520 year computation. Brown in turn owes the calculation of the “seven times” of Daniel’s prophecy as 2520 years and the association of it to The Times of the Gentiles to Joshua Spalding.

    Spaulding wrote Divine Theory; A System of Divinity in 1798, though it seems not to have been published until 1808. Spalding, writing of the seven-times of Daniel’s Great Tree Vision, said:

    Seven times, or one full week of years, upon the great prophetic scale, is 2520 years. This supposition is much strengthened by the consideration, that the continuance of mystical Babylon is said expressly to be for a time, times, and a half; and as the times allotted for this division of the empire, is the half of a week, three times and a half, it is natural to conclude, that the whole of the times, called the times of the Gentiles, is a whole week, or seven times.

    Though Spalding was an American clergyman, the British Library Catalogue testifies that his books circulated in Britain . It is possible that J. A. Brown was familiar with Spalding. Yet it seems certain that Brown played a part in influencing Barbour that Spalding did not.

    That Gentile Times were 2520 years became a standard view among expositors. The popularization of the 2520 year calculation was probably due to George Stanley Faber. He used the calculation in The Sacred Calendar of Prophecy, published in 1828.

    When The Christian Guardian and Church of England Magazine reviewed Faber’s book in 1830, it accepted without question the 2520 day calculation, though it suggested Faber had no basis for his start date. Edward Bickersteth adopted the calculation in the mid-1830s. His reputation as a pious Bible scholar sealed it into Advent thinking.

    If the 2520 year calculation isn’t original to Barbour, nothing else in his ‘“Gentile Times” calculation belongs to him either. Faber mentioned the 606 B.C. date in his 1811 work A Dissertation on the Prophecy Contained in Daniel ix, 24-27 .

    In the 1820’s, several authors pointed to 606 B.C. as the date at which the seventy-year long exile began. In 1834 Matthew Habershon mentioned the 606 B.C. date, but calculated the “seven times” from three years later, ending them in 1918.

    William Miller adopted the 2520 year calculation but ended it in 1843. John Dowling, a Baptist pastor, criticized William Miller’s method for calculating the “seven times,” suggesting that " it would have answered the purpose ... much better had this subtraction happened to have brought out the number 606 B.C., the date of the commencement of the 70 years captivity of the Israelites in Babylon ."

    It seems certain that the ultimate source for Barbour’s 1914 calculation is E. B. Elliott’s Horae Apocalypticae, where the 606 B.C. to 1914 calculation is found.

    The next mention of the 1914 date in connection to “Gentile Times” I can find is by an anonymous author writing in The Original Session Magazine in 1850. The magazine was published in Scotland but saw circulation in the United States . This author suggested that the “seven times” would end in 1897, yet his calculation took him to 1914. He arrives at his other dates, including the 1897 date by a complicated series of additions and subtractions from the basic “2520 - 606 = 1914” calculation. If one removes all the puzzling additions and subtractions, one has Barbour’s usage. There is no way to know if Barbour was familiar with the Session magazine but he almost certainly was familiar with John Dowling and Habershon, and he tells us he read Elliott’s Horae Apocalypticae.

    It is worth noting that Samuel Davies Baldwin taught that the actual date was 607 B.C. He dated the seventy years from 607- 537 B.C., a view later adopted by Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    Baldwin, S. D.: Armageddon: Or the Overthrow of Romanism and Monarchy’ The Existence of the United States Foretold in the Bible, Its Future Greatness; Invasion by Allied Europe; Annihilation of Monarchy; Expansion into the Millennial Republic, and its Dominion over the Whole World , Applegate and Company, Cincinnati, 1863, page 424.

  • Mad Sweeney
    Mad Sweeney

    Wait, so this book is saying that the information was NOT transmitted to the Borg via the lowercase holy spirit or through angels?!? They lie to us?

Share this