E. W. Bullinger was an English scholar, a Christian who authored many books, and a man who was concerned about the direction of the Church over one-hundred years ago. His book, Number in Scripture, Its Supernatural Design and Spiritual Significance, contains amazing insights into how numbers fit into the Word of God. This book was first published in 1894 and has since been re-published and is available today.
The study of numbers in the Bible is not numerology, which declares that numbers determine your future just like astrology. However, numbers in the Bible are found to have consistent meaning and uses.
Dr. Bullinger, a great Biblical scholar, made a list of the many sieges of the city of Jerusalem. He began the list with the first Biblical account and continued through the Bible and history. (Please see "Bullinger's Sieges of Jerusalem" on the Bible History menu.) Upon completing the list, he was surprised to find that there were patterns within this list. He wrote, “The sieges of Jerusalem have been 27 in number, or three times nine, and they are stamped with the number of Divine completeness (3) and the number of judgment (9).”
The first thing Dr. Bullinger noticed was the 10th and 20th sieges. He had earlier determined that ten is used in the Bible to indicate perfect order marking the completeness of a cycle. The 10th siege was by Nebuchadnezzar when the Temple was completely destroyed and burnt. Ten sieges later, the 20th siege was by the Romans in 70 A.D. when the Temple was completely destroyed and burnt. This is not coincidental.
In the Bible Dr. Bullinger found that 9 is used to indicate finality and judgment. It is the last digit before 10, which completes the numeric cycle. An example of the use of 9 is found in Hagai 1:11, where, because of rebellion, the Lord declares judgment on 9 things in Israel.
The list contains 27 sieges, which number is determined by 3, Divine completeness (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) multiplied by 9, judgment and finality. The list of 27 sieges indicates the complete judgment of God.
Seven is also a number of completeness, and 7 and multiples of 7 are found in the list 3 times. There will be another siege (Zechariah 14:2) in the future. This will be the 28th, and again ended by Divine intervention.
These form a chiasm, or an epanodos, a literary form:
A 7th – Sennacherib – ended by Divine intervention
B 14th – Antiochus – one of the most awful
B 21st – Hadrian – one of the most complete
A 28th – Anti-Christ – ended by Divine intervention
I think if you read E. W. Bullinger’s book, you will be amazed at what he has found in the Bible.
Is not the Lord awe and wonder inspiring? May His name be praised forever