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article imageOp-Ed: Sir Isaac Newton’s Theology and Eschatology

By Eliot Elwar     Apr 19, 2012 in Science
Today, Sir Isaac Newton is famous for his scientific achievements. He redeveloped physics for the Western world during the 17th century. His discovery of the gravitational laws dominated physics before Einstein’s special and general relativity theory.
Furthermore, Newton’s math and science accomplishments are employed for calculations of objects slower than the speed of light. Currently, math and science students worldwide learn about Newton's gravitational laws; however, few of them are aware of his theology and eschatology. Analysis of Newton’s manuscripts, his religious papers, his 2060 prediction, and Jewish National University Library’s collection of Newton’s non-scientific writings revealed that Newton was a deeply religious man of science.
According to the National Library of Israel (NLI), conflicting with many expectations discovered amid Newton’s works, his papers cover topics about biblical interpretations, theology, primeval civilizations, the Tabernacle and Temple, eschatology calculations related to time’s end, historical documents, and his fascination with alchemy.
NLI also reported that Newton’s papers present aspects of his introverted, complex personality, and work that the populace had not known before. His writings reveal evidence for the time and energy that he exhausted in attempting to decode books in the bible, which he believed contained secret knowledge encrypted in the Holy Scriptures. Dr. Eliyahu Rips, renowned mathematician and the discoverer of the Bible code phenomenon, believes Newton was searching for Bible codes, but lacked the computer technology to achieve his objectives.
According to USA Today, Newton’s manuscripts revealed his calculations for the exact date of the apocalypse, noting precisely the ancient temple dimensions in Jerusalem. His unique interpretations about biblical passages uncover the spiritual intensity of one of the greatest scientist in human history. Newton, who died on 20 March 1727, became famous for laying the foundations for modern science. However, in the New Jerusalem exhibit, he appears as a deeply religious scholar who found the time to write about the Jewish law, while penning phrases in Hebrew letters.
According to the London Evening Standard, Isaac Newton believed the Apocalypse would come in the year 2060, precisely 1,260 years following the Holy Roman Empire’s founding, according to a published letter. Newton based this figure on religion rather than scientific reasoning. Newton uses the Book of Daniel (Daniel chapters 9 and 10) for calculations about the apocalypse’s date. Newton wrote that the end of days would see the wicked nations’ destruction, the end of troubles and sorrows, the Jewish return from worldwide dispersion and their formation of a flourishing and everlasting Kingdom. "These documents show a scientist guided by religious fervor, by a desire to see God's actions in the world," said Yemima Ben-Menahem.
According to the Jewish National University Library (JNUL), prior to Isaac Newton’s non-scientific papers being auctioned away in London during 1936, few scholars were aware of the collection’s size and content. Among Newton’s manuscripts were many words about alchemy, theology, and biblical eschatology. Newton’s papers exposed unknown dimensions of his science career; however, it was many years before his documents would be made accessible for serious-minded scholarly investigation.
Newton’s papers are significant to the modern reader for three reasons. First, Newton’s documents gave clarification about his scientific motivation. Newton’s theistic devotion was his inspiration to learn about nature and science, while his theological papers demonstrated his inductive methods and his perspective about God’s unification and destination for the creation, according to JNUL.
Second, Newton’s personality was illuminated in his manuscripts. The person many people viewed as the personification of cold hard rationalism, secularism, and scientism appears today as an alchemist, a biblical scholar, and a religious believer in biblical literalism and eschatology, according to JNUL.
And third, Newton’s papers highlighted his generation. Newton’s collection of alchemical manuscripts was probably the largest in Europe. His writings included millions of words on theology, Christian history, Jewish history, and eschatological exegesis found throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, according to JNUL.
Many science historians enjoy highlighting Newton's achievements in math and science as well as his fascination with alchemy. Secular academics often portrayed Newton as a pure rationalist devoid of any spirituality because they believe that no real scientist could have strong theistic views based upon biblical literalism. However, Newton's biblical passion is clear throughout his documents, equaled by his hunger for analyzing the cosmos he believed God created, according to his literal interpretation of the Genesis creation account. Newton completely rejected the concept that religion and science could never mix. He appreciated God's omniscience, omnipotence, and omnipresence in forming the physical universe, and in biblical inspiration. Therefore, if Newton was alive today he would probably embrace the science of intelligent design and reject the religious dogma of Darwinism.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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