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Thread: 666 Before Revelation

  1. #11
    tWebber
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    My point was simply that he doesn’t use the same terminology as we do. Most of Philo’s original Greek was lost, but as far as I can tell, when he wants to describe a number times itself repeatedly, he doesn’t call it a power. In Greek he uses the word auxeseis, which would literally be translated “augmentation,” not dynamis, which is “power.” When he uses “power” he refers to some strengthened quality of the number. As your final quote shows, since a square is not the fourth power, nor is a cube the 8th power. But the number 4 is a “power,” in that the number 2 is empowered by augmenting it once (squaring it) to become 4, or twice (cubing it) to become the number 8, not the 8th power, but the powerful augmentation of 2 that becomes the number 8. The 8th power does not mean 2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2 but the number 8 as an empowered number by cubing 2.

    That’s why he can say that 600 is a third, “minor” power of 6; it has nothing to do with 6x6x6, but 6 empowered twice, not augmented twice. It was just idle speculation on my part to say that it’s called a minor power because its name, hexakosios, is a diminutive of the name for 60, hexakontos, and both of those suffixes have to do with a minor and major “hurling,” which means throwing a number with force to a distant spot. In the same way that we say you “carry” the one in addition, they might say you “hurl” it. But that was just a guess on why those numbers have those names and why he called 600 a minor power. I see no indication that 60 was mentioned in that first passage for any reason other than to say that there’s a middle ground (not a mathematical mean/average) between 6 and 600. There was no contextual reason to mention 60 or to add 60 to the 6 or 600 to get 666, which he never mentions and has nothing to do with the Flood that he's discussing.

    The wiki article you cited has footnote citations. The first one I checked specifically denies that dynamis, the Greek word that is translated as “power,” means power in the mathematical sense:
    “dynamis is frequently translated as ‘power,’ but this translation is misleading–in fact it is downright false, for Greek mathematicians did not as yet have a general notion of ‘power.’ The Platonic term auxes comes close to our concept of ‘power’ but does not correspond to it, since there was only a second and third auxe in Greek.”

    Reading a little farther in that same source, I see that he suggests "power" just means the value of any number after any transformation, so 600 is the third power of 6 in that 6 has been transformed twice in some way.
    Last edited by Just Passing Through; 06-21-2020 at 09:40 AM.

  2. #12
    tWebber eschaton's Avatar
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    60

    Thanks again for your input. I now agree with part of what you are saying.
    "My point was simply that he doesn’t use the same terminology as we do." I agree with you on that. I have to think if most of the original Greek was lost, how can you be sure about the words you are using? I would agree that in Philo's terminology 4 is the fourth power. I understand that he is saying that 8 is the eighth power. Four is the first square and eight is the first cube.

    "the square which is the fourth power, which is an equally equal number. Also, the cube, which is the eighth power,"

    "eight is the first cube,"

    It would seem that if 4 is the fourth power and 8 is the eighth power then the third power would have to be 3. If unity is one, or the number multiplied by 6 to equal 6, then adding and averaging the powers would still equal 2. Then in a series of 6*6*6 as in Plato's number the 2 could still represent the second place. The minor power is first and the third power is third.

    I don't see where you fully explain augmenting or strengthening. Does hurling mean carrying? Do you have anything to back that up? I gather you understand that Philo was fully aware of adding and subtracting exponents.

    My point in the first post that Philo and Irenaeus were not placing importance on a sum. Instead, they were placing importance on the individual 6's that make up the number 666. Irenaeus referred to 66 as in Daniel 3:1.

    "sixty cubits high and six cubits wide" That's his explanation of the second 6.

    You say:

    "so 600 is the third power of 6 in that 6 has been transformed twice in some way."

    Philo says:

    "For the third power of six and the minor power is the number six hundred"

    So he is either saying both the minor power and the third power are 600 or is it a sum? If it is transformed could that indicate 6 and 60?

    I would be interested in a discussion of Philo in relation to Irenaeus.

    Philo - Noah's age at the flood 600, mean(?), 6 days of creation
    Irenaeus - Noah's age at the flood 600, nebuchadnezzar's image 66, 6 days of creation

    You say - "There was no contextual reason to mention 60 "
    Philo says - "and the mean between both is sixty"

  3. #13
    tWebber eschaton's Avatar
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    Another point I'm trying to make is that the calculation isn't simple isopsephy or gematria. The type of calculation made by Philo and Irenaeus in this instance is done with a combination of mathematics and philosphical logic of the kind Plato used. Mathematics and philosophy were part of wisdom. Philo said:

    ...because instead of the sublime erudition of astronomy he gave him intellect, that is to say, instead of a small part of wisdom, he gave him the whole and perfect blessing of entire wisdom, since a knowledge of things above is included and comprehended in wisdom, as a part is included in the whole; for mathematics are only a part.
    Philo Q&A on Genesis III

  4. #14
    tWebber eschaton's Avatar
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    The book of Revelation says that wisdom is needed to calculate the number of the beast. Not only that, but John also speaks as though the wisdom already existed. Philo of Alexandria wrote before John wrote the book of Revelation. He gave an interpretation of the number 666. It was similar to the first Christian interpretation given by the second-century church father Irenaeus. Both pay more attention to the place of the digits rather than the number treated as a sum. Belial/Beliar is the word in the Old Testament for those worthless, lawless ones. It can be found in the New Testament by simply comparing scripture to scripture. The connection between Belial/Beliar to antichrist has long been known. What is new is how this name is calculated from 666.

    I have summarized my findings in a Kindle ebook, "666 And The Name, by Alan Fuller." I hope everyone will have a chance to give it a look.

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