[by Dean Smith] I was waiting in the doctor’s office for an appointment when I saw it — another confirmation of the Book of Genesis.
The waiting area is a large room with eight rows of padded chairs down the middle. In the far corner, there is an enclosed play area for children. Only a choice few chairs have arms. I quickly sat in one of those.
The room was half full of people with various ailments. Old to young. Mostly women.
Having selected my chair, I walked down the aisle looking at the various magazines on the seats. If doctors want to attract more men, they need to make a small change in their waiting area. Add magazines that men want to read.
No, I wasn’t interested in articles on 273 different shades of red lipstick. A thick magazine discussing the latest raging Hollywood hair styles was mildly interesting, but I shave my head. I put it down. There was the usual assortment of home decoration magazines but I have no plans to change our bathroom into the Taj Mahal, none that my wife told me of anyway.
Then I stumbled upon the only two magazines of the dozens in the room that a man would be interested in. I greedily grabbed both of them. It is every man for himself in a doctor’s office.
One in particular, a National Geographic, caught my attention. The gloss cover was scarred and battered. Some of the lettering worn. The corner of the pages were bent over and it was ripped along the binding side. It looked like it had seen a few battles as desperate men tried to rip it out of other people’s hands.
It was a doctor’s office equivalent of a gold strike.
The title was “This Baby will live to be a 120.” A big red asterisk pointed to a barely readable subtitle: “It’s not hype. New science could lead to very long lives.”
It was about how science was extending people’s lives. We could be living longer the writer said, except for disease and unhealthy life choices, but that was changing.
It reminded me of an article I read years ago in the National Post. Dr Stephen Juan, in his column “Odd Body,” made this interesting statement:
“Some cell biologists now believe there is a definite limit to human cell reproduction making the maximum age possible for human life to be about 110 to 120 years.”
One way of describing this process, is that our cell duplication works like a photo copier. When you photocopy a page and then recopy the photocopy and do that repeatedly, there is a gradual deterioration over time. Eventually, the page is unreadable.
This is what happens to the human body, after of 120 years of photocopying cells, it’s done. However, because of disease and unhealthy living habits, we rarely reach our maximum.
When you look at the first few chapters of the Book of Genesis, we can easily cite two major judgements that God brought on the world. The first being death, after Adam and Eve fell into sin, and then of course the flood mentioned in Genesis 6.
But there is a third judgment tucked along with the flood story, that many of us miss.
“Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.” (Genesis 6:v3 NASV)
God says man’s life span would be limited to 120 years. Here it is written thousands of years ago and science has finally just caught up with this fact in the 21st century.
This is exactly what happened. Before the flood, humans were living hundreds of years — Methuselah lived 969 years (Genesis 5:27) and Lamech 777 years (v 31) as examples.
Immediately after the flood, this judgement came into effect and over the next few hundred years, there was a gradual reduction in life spans. In Genesis 11:31, Reu lived 207 years, Abraham 175 years (Genesis 25:7) and by Joseph’s day (who lived 110 years Genesis 50:25), lifespans were all under the 120 year benchmark.
Perhaps, just as oddly I believe this 120-year judgment is what ended the dinosaur age.