# Re: The Nature of Atheist - Christian dialogue

From: Vernon Jenkins (vernon.jenkins@virgin.net)
Date: Sun May 04 2003 - 17:06:41 EDT

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Michael,

I had said: "Among the clear certainties of life we may observe the
following: taking any multiple of 3 (as normally expressed as a denary, or
base-10, object) and summing the cubes of its digits - repeating the process
as many times as may be necessary to obtain a final stable outcome - we find
that outcome invariably to be 153 - the 17th triangular number. Here are two
examples which demonstrate the principle:
3 -> 27 (ie 3^3) -> 351 (ie 2^3 + 7^3) -> 153 -> 153 ...
1624623 -> 540 -> 189 -> 1242 -> 81 -> 513 -> 153 ...
In other words, this simple digit transform converts one third of all
natural numbers (as normally represented) to the number of fishes caught by
Peter and his companions."

You replied: " I simply cannot understand what you are saying ... and the
sequence of numbers is unintelligible."

Let me therefore again attempt to convince you that 153 per se is, without
doubt, a most remarkable number; and that its presence in Jn.21 is a matter
that ought not to be lightly dismissed. I regard my opening paragraph as a
concise, yet complete, description of a process that invariably delivers
this number from any multiple of 3. Let me therefore focus on the examples
and provide a little more detail:

Example 1:
Step 1: 3 is clearly a multiple of 3; its cube is 3x3x3, or 27
Step 2: the digits of 27 are 2 and 7, and their cubes, 8 and 343
Step 3: the sum of these cubes is 351 - its digits, 3, 5 and 1
Step 4: the sum of the cubes of these is 3x3x3 + 5x5x5 + 1x1x1,
or 27 + 125 + 1, or 153 - its digits 1, 5 and 3
Step 5: the sum of the cubes of these is, as before, 153

This therefore the _stable outcome_ of the process.

Example 2:
Step 1: 1624623 is a multiple of 3 - its digits, 1, 6, 2, 4, 6, 2, 3
Step 2: the sum of the cubes of these is 1x1x1 + 6x6x6 + 2x2x2
+ 4x4x4 + 6x6x6 + 2x2x2 + 3x3x3, or 1 + 216 + 8 + 64 +
216 + 8 + 27, or 540 - its digits, 5, 4 and 0
Step 3: the sum of the cubes of these is 5x5x5 + 4x4x4, or 125
+ 64, or 189 - its digits, 1, 8 and 9
Step 4: the sum of the cubes of these is 1x1x1 + 8x8x8 +
9x9x9, or 1 + 512 + 729, or 1242 - its digits, 1, 2, 4 and 2
Step 5: the sum of the cubes of these is 1 + 8 + 64 + 8, or 81
Step 6: the digits of 81 are 8 and 1, and their cubes, 512 and 1;
the sum of these is 513 - its digits, 5, 1 and 3
Step 7: the sum of the cubes of these is 153

While these are specific examples, the principle is of general application -
as may be readily demonstrated. Michael, I hope we can now agree that here
is an important feature of all multiples of 3, viz that they may be simply
transformed to the 3-digit triangular number153 by a process which - at each
stage - involves raising individual digits to the power 3. [You may remember
that I had already drawn attention to the matching incidence of threes in
Jn.21.]

I had then said: "John, along with Peter, had earlier been judged by the
Sanhedrin to be 'unlearned and ignorant men' (Acts 4:13). Clearly therefore
John's including the detail, '153 fishes...yet was not the net broken', in
the last chapter of his gospel is as mysterious as his building an accurate
value of the universal constant 'e' into the numerics of his first verse!"

To which you responded: "What do you mean?"

I posted details of this finding (in parallel with the discovery of an
equally accurate value for 'pi' in Genesis 1:1) under the title "Watershed",
June 20, 2001. Indeed, I'm surprised you've no knowledge of it, for it
invoked much discussion - and you were certainly around at that time. You
may find the details under the heading "From First Principles" at my website
(URL below),

Clearly, these authorities you keep quoting - Carson, Hendricksen, and now
Barrett - had no knowledge of these developments. Thus, their words in
respect of Jn.21 can no longer carry any weight; and the suggestion that
this chapter may be allegorical is risible.

Finally, in answer to my request for clarification of your charge, "To
interpret Rev.13:18 the way YOU DO IS TO DELIBERATELY MISINTERPRET HOLY
SCRIPTURE.", you offer the following:

"Vernon, your arguments boomerang against the Bible. This is my concern."

Michael, this is hardly satisfactory; indeed it raises more questions than

----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Roberts" <michael.andrea.r@ukonline.co.uk>
To: "Vernon Jenkins" <vernon.jenkins@virgin.net>
Cc: "ASA" <asa@calvin.edu>
Sent: Friday, May 02, 2003 1:00 PM
Subject: Re: The Nature of Atheist - Christian dialogue

>
> I simply cannot understand what you are saying below and the sequence of
> numbers is unintelligible.
> In fact what you have done is to demonstrate that the bible is probably
> allegory as CKBarrett argues. See below on the 153.
>
> Vernon your arguments boomerang against the Bible. This is my concern.
>
> Michael
> >
> > Among the clear certainties of life we may observe the following:
> >
> > Taking any multiple of 3 (as normally expressed as a denary, or base-10,
> > object) and summing the cubes of its digits - repeating the process as
> many
> > times as may be necessary to obtain a final stable outcome - we find
that
> > outcome invariably to be 153 - the 17th triangular number. Here are two
> > examples which demonstrate the principle:
> >
> > 3 -> 27 (ie 3^3) -> 351 (ie 2^3 + 7^3) -> 153 -> 153 ...
> >
> > 1624623 -> 540 -> 189 -> 1242 -> 81 -> 513 -> 153 ...
> >
> > In other words, this simple digit transform converts one third of all
> > natural numbers (as normally represented) to the number of fishes caught
> by
> > Peter and his companions. Observe the significance of 3 in Jn.21: this
was
> > the 3rd time Jesus had appeared to the disciples since his resurrection;
> he
> > questions Peter 3 times; 153 has 3 digits.
> > The number of disciples involved in the event was 7 - another number
> having
> > a clear biblical significance..
> >
> > John, along with Peter, had earlier been judged by the Sanhedrin to be
> > "unlearned and ignorant men" (Acts 4:13). Clearly therefore John's
> including
> > the detail, "153 fishes...yet was not the net broken",
> > in the last chapter of his gospel is as mysterious as his building an
> > accurate value of the universal constant 'e' into the numerics of his
> first
> > verse!
>
> What do you mean?
>
> >
> > These matters provide tangible, and in my view, conclusive evidence that
> the
> > real Author of the gospel that carries his name was not John, but the
> Lord.
> > And that should encourages one to believe the whole Book to be God's
word
> to
> > man - and hence essentially immune to the depredations of the higher
> critics
> > and others.
>
> So much for that . Dealing with the 153 the NT scholar CKBarrett in his
> commentary says (p484) This observation increases the probability that
other
> features of the story (in ch21) shouild be taken allegorically.
>
>
>
>
>

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