How old does somebody have to be to be old? 40 years? 50 years? 70 years? 90? over 100? It’s funny, but when I was a little girl I thought 30 and 40 was old. But when I reached 30 I didn’t think it was old at all. I kept on having more birthdays until now I think 90 is old.

The Bible says the first people God created got much older than people do today. Adam lived to be 930 years old before he died. Adam’s great great great great great grandson was Methuselah, and Methuselah lived to be 969 years old when he died. Because Adam lived so long, he lived to see Methuselah. And Methuselah lived until after Noah was born.

How could people live so long back then? Nobody really knows the answer to that question. Some people use information from the Bible like this as excuses to say the Bible is just wrong. Here are some things to consider before you let this kind of thinking get in the way of learning and believing what the Bible has to say.

  • Sea turtles have been known to live over 250 years.
  • Mollusks or clams have been found that may be over 400 years old.
  • There is a Bristlecone pine tree (named Methuselah)  in the White Mountains in California that is believed to be over 4,000 years old.
  • These really old people all lived before the time of Noah and the great flood. So many things about the earth, its climate and atmosphere could have been very different then.
  • God’s first plan for Adam and Eve was that they should live forever, but they messed that up when they ate the fruit God told them not to eat.

Before you let anyone tell you not to believe the Bible because of these things, remember that nobody can prove the people didn’t live that long – they can only guess about it. The Bible says they did.

Almighty God, you are so great and so powerful. You decided what we would look like before we were born. You are the one who gives us life and who decides how long we can live. Thank you for making us. Give us the courage to believe the Bible, even if others say we are wrong. Amen.

© 2009 by Janice Green

Here is a link to a chart I found that gives the ages of many people in the Bible beginning with Adam and ending several generations after the flood when people didn’t live as long.