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     "And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads."  -Revelation 7:2-3

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FAQ - Did God limit the lifespan of man to 120 years?

Q.  Did God limit the lifespan of man to 120 years before the flood in Genesis 6:3?

A.  No.  The 120 years was the period of probation (OT H3117, days, remaineth) granted to man before the flood. It began when God told Noah to build the ark and it ended 120 years later when the ark was completely built, then the flood came.  It has nothing to do with a limit on the age of man.  "... the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water."  -1 Peter 3:18-20 NKJV

Insisting that this error is true makes God inconsistent or a liar. Here is just one of many reasons why:  Noah’s son Shem was conceived and born after God would have supposedly limited the age of man to 120 years (Genesis 6:10), yet Shem lived to 600+ years (100 years old before the flood (Genesis 7:6 - Genesis 5:32 = 100), plus 500 more years after the flood, Genesis 11:11).  If God had limited man’s lifespan to exactly 120 years in Genesis 6:3 and Shem lived to over 600 then God was either 1) a liar, or 2) inconsistent, or and we believe this last option to be the correct answer 3) the 120 years had nothing to do with man’s lifespan and everything to do with the deadline for Noah to complete the ark so that it would be ready in time.   There are multiple other examples of men living longer than 120 years after the flood.  There is not an expiration date on your birth certificate.

Here is a list of people that lived longer than 120 years after Genesis 6:10 and the flood, some of them lived MUCH longer than 120 years:

  • Shem - 600+ years (Genesis 7:6, Genesis 5:32, Genesis 11:11)
  • Arphaxed - 438 years (Genesis 11:12; 11:13)
  • Salah - 433 years (Genesis 11:12; 11:15)
  • Eber - 464 (Genesis 11:14; 11:17)
  • Peleg - 239 years (Genesis 11:16; 11:19)
  • Reu - 239 years (Genesis 11:18; 11:19)
  • Serug - 230 years (Genesis 11:20; 21:5)
  • Nahor - 148 years (Genesis 11:22; 11:25)
  • Terah - 205 years (Genesis 11:24; 11:32)
  • Abraham - 175 years (Genesis 25:7,8)
  • Ishmael - 137 years (Genesis 25:17)
  • Isaac - 180 years (Genesis 21:5, 35:28-29)
  • Jacob - 147 years (Genesis 25:26; Genesis 47:28)
  • Jeanne Calment - 122 years, 164 days (Wikipedia, List of the verified oldest people) (Birth: 21 February 1875, Death: 4 August 1997)

Man has limited his age to a large extent through dietary and lifestyle choices, such as continuing to eat meat even once there was no need to after the flood once vegetables and fruit were growing again.  This does not rule out some environmental factors that changed during the flood but the primary cause of age degeneration appears to be dietary/lifestyle related.  Search the internet for  “blue zones” to learn much more about how diet and lifestyle affects longevity.

"In great forbearance, He [the Lord] waits for man to come to his terms. For 120 years he waited for the people of the old world to receive the warning of the flood. ..." {Review and Herald, October 21, 1890 par. 9}

"... because of the continued violation of the laws of life, the years of man have been shortened, so that the present generation are passing off to the grave at an earlier age than that at which the antediluvians came upon the stage of active life." {Review and Herald, December 13, 1881 par. 4}

Here is an third party web site resource that helps visualize much of the data above:

Answered by Ryan McCoy, Speaker/Director Sealing Time Ministries​

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