Search Bible
Click for Help   Click for QuickNav   Click for Advanced Search Options
Search KJV
Your Bible Version is the KJV
Go to Top
Link to This Page Cite This Page
Share this page Follow the BLB
Printable Page
 
 
The Blue Letter Bible
BLB Searches
Search the Bible
Search KJV
 [?]

Advanced Options

Other Searches

Multi-Verse Retrieval
x
Search KJV

Let's Connect
x
Daily Devotionals
x

Blue Letter Bible offers several daily devotional readings in order to help you refocus on Christ and the Gospel of His peace and righteousness.

Daily Bible Reading Plans
x

Recognizing the value of consistent reflection upon the Word of God in order to refocus one's mind and heart upon Christ and His Gospel of peace, we provide several reading plans designed to cover the entire Bible in a year.

One-Year Plans

Two-Year Plan

Don Stewart :: Does the Bible Give an Inaccurate Value for Pi?

Choose a new font size and typeface
Don Stewart
The following Scripture seems to give an inaccurate value for pi.

Then he made the Sea of cast bronze, ten cubits from one brim to the other; it was completely round. Its height was five cubits, and a line of thirty cubits measured its circumference (2 Chronicles 4:2).

Some see this three to one ratio as inconsistent with an inerrant Scripture. The true value of pi is 3.14159 rather than 3.0. Is this a scientific error?

Two Possible Solutions

There are two basic ways that this problem can be approached without admitting to a scientific error. The first solution sees the writer as speaking in approximate terms. As we have already said, the Bible does not claim to give technical scientific explanations for things, but rather speaks from the viewpoint of an observer. This is the same thing we all do in everyday speech. Therefore, in this instance, the writer is only speaking in approximate terms.

However, there is another solution that has the biblical writer speaking very precisely. Charles Ryrie explains:

The ten cubit measurement was from brim to brim; that is from the outside edge to the other. But verse 5 states the width of the edge was a handbreath or about 4 inches. So the insider diameter was ten cubits (180 inches) minus two handbreaths (8 inches). Multiplying 172 inches by pi, the total is 540 inches, the same circumference given in verse 2. (Charles Ryrie, Basic Theology, Wheaton, Illinois: SP Publications, 1986, p. 99).

Whichever solution is adopted, it is clear that one not need assume a scientific error.
CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


Donate Contact

Blue Letter Bible study tools make reading, searching and studying the Bible easy and rewarding.

Hotjar - Unlimited insights from your web and mobile sites

Blue Letter Bible is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization