In the Bible, God has ‘labelled’ or ‘marked’ certain individuals or ‘groups of people’ with numbers, very specific numbers which are either ‘prime’ or have ‘geometrical form’. As will be seen, ‘triangular’ numbers and their biblical meaning are key in this understanding.
By way of background, consider that in mathematics, certain numbers have characteristics. For example, some numbers are ‘odd’ and some numbers are ‘even’. Several of the numbers (which the Lord has used in this biblical ‘labelling’ or ‘marking’) have characteristics which are figurative, in other words, the numbers may be formed into simple geometrical shapes (most importantly, triangles or pyramids).
As an example, consider the number ‘three’ as it is triangular because the number ‘three’ may be formed into a triangle. Not all numbers can form triangles and therefore not all numbers are ‘triangular’ – try making the shape of a triangle with two or four billiard balls (or any suitable object) as it cannot be done! With three, however, a triangle is easily formed.
The picture below is a triangle constructed from 15 billiard balls. This equal-sided triangle of 15 balls means that the number ‘15’ is a triangular number and because there are five rows, it is the fifth triangular number (in mathematics). Note that triangular numbers become rarer as numbers become higher.
The reason for this mathematical detail about triangular numbers is because the Bible uses triangular numbers (as will be shown with examples below), to label certain individuals or ‘groups’ just before a major divine intervention!
But before looking at these biblical examples, consider the following verse:
Revelation 13:18 Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.
The mathematical fact is that the number ‘666’ is a triangular number – the 36th triangular number and the calculation of the number ‘666’ can be nothing else except to count up (or calculate by counting up), beginning at 1, the levels which cumulatively create this 36th triangular number of ‘666’!
1+2+3+4+5+6+7+8+9+10+11+12+13+14+15+16+17+18+19+20+21+22+23+24+25+26+27+28+29+30+31+32+33+34+35+36 = 666
This is the ‘wisdom’! That triangular numbers are significant in the Bible and the ‘understanding’ (of Revelation 13:18) is the discovery of the meaning of triangular numbers in scripture. As already mentioned above, triangular numbers are observed in the Bible to label significant ‘groups’ of people just before a major divine intervention! The following three people groups are biblical examples of this assertion. (Note also that these three people groups are of special interest because they each include all, or part of all believers who are included in the first resurrection)
· The Completed Body of Christ labelled with ‘153’ (the 17th triangular number) just before the Rapture.
· All believers in the 6000 bible years labelled with ‘190’ (the 19th triangular number) just before the completion of the first resurrection.
· Believing Israel Post Rapture (Tribulation) labelled with ‘276’ (the 23rd triangular number) just before the second coming of Messiah at the end of the Tribulation.
Moreover, a beautifully elegant symmetry appears because the numbers ‘17’, ‘19’ and ‘23’ are all ‘prime’ numbers – numbers which are foundational and cannot be divided further (except by one and themselves). In fact, they are the 7th, 8th and 9th prime numbers. The following diagram illustrates this symmetry:
As can be seen in the diagram above, the prime numbers have a simple symmetry around the eighth prime number (‘19’). This asserts a theme of ‘resurrection' because the number ‘eight’ in the Bible is the number of ‘resurrection’ (because there are eight personal resurrections detailed in all scripture – excluding Messiah's resurrection).
Note also that the majority of believers represented in this diagram will be in the first resurrection and Eve is central as the ‘mother of all the living’ (Genesis 3:20). What is remarkable is how the Bible has drawn together all believers who are spiritually living or ‘born again’ (which includes Old Testament Saints) in such a symmetrical pattern. As will be seen, this symmetry is even more significant once the biblical source text of the central number ‘190’ is known.
Genesis 3:20 And Adam called his wife's name Eve, because she was the mother of all living.
Until recently, the central pillar of this symmetry, namely the 19th triangular number (‘190’) has been difficult to locate on the surface of scripture whereas, the other two triangle numbers – ‘153’ (the Completed Body of Christ) and ‘276’ (Believing Israel Post Rapture) – are readily found. The number ‘153’ is in John 21:11 and the number ‘276’ is in Acts 27:37. Both these passages of scripture are typologically rich passages for the church and Israel respectively (as detailed in the book ‘Unlocking the Biblical Watch of Messiah’s Return’ pages 107-133).
The number ‘190’ really has remained elusive. Remember that ‘190’ represents all believers (throughout all 6000 bible years of history) who have been ‘born again’ and who will partake in the first resurrection before the Millennial Kingdom. How appropriate, therefore, that the number ‘190’ has now been found in the parable of the sower where the ‘seed’ (the word of God) is sown into different types of ground (the heart of a man). The seed sown on the ‘good ground’ represents the heart of a man, woman or child who becomes a believer and receives the word of God in their heart and is ‘born again’.
Matthew 13:8 But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
It is here that the number ‘190’ manifests in the Bible and in a passage to do with all believers. Add up the numbers ‘100’ and ‘60’ and ‘30’ and the result is ‘190’.
In summary, triangular numbers mark significant people (or groups) in the Bible just before a major divine intervention! Why would God do this? Well, the reason is that these triangular numbers are part of a bigger picture in that they are an essential stage of the prime-fulfilment pattern – a pattern of elegant form which gives biblical forensic authentication to the fulfilment of major dispensational events.