The Bible makes mention of many fantastical beings throughout its pages, such as descriptions of giants in the Book of Numbers or the great Behemoth in the Book of Job. And although these accounts might seem impossible at first glance, some scripture experts would beg to differ. Professor Tom Meyer of Shasta Bible College and Graduate School in California, US, is certain archaeological evidence exists to shed light on the Bible’s seemingly “impossible” narrative.
The Bible expert also claims a modern-day perspective could explain how, in his opinion, six-fingered giants standing over nine feet tall could have been real.
Professor Meyer told Express.co.uk: “Archaeological evidence has come to light that not only demonstrates the ancient’s knowledge of strange medical abnormalities like polydactylies – an anomaly in humans and animals resulting in supernumerary fingers and or toes – but also sheds light on the reliability of the Bible.
“The Bible mentions a huge Philistine warrior from Gath who had six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot and who was descendant from a race of giants called the Rephaim.”
Conditions such as polydactyly or polydactylism are still seen today even though through proper medical treatment, they can be removed early in a child’s development.
And the tallest man to have ever lived, Robert Wadlow, was measured in 1940 at an impressive eight feet and 11.1 inches.
Professor Meyer himself said he has met Gheorghe Muresan, a former NBA player whose height of seven feet and seven inches has earned him the nickname of Big Ghita.
The Bible expert said: “Apparently, the Israelites believed that polydactylism was a characteristic of giants or people with almost superhuman strength.
“Believe it or not this abnormality wasn’t uncommon in the world of the Bible as there is ample archaeological evidence to demonstrate polydactylism in numerous ancient near eastern cultures.
“An example from the Holy Land comes from the famous city of Jericho where archaeologists discovered a statue that depicted a person with six toes.
The Bible mentions a huge Philistine warrior from Gath who had six fingers
Professor Tom Meyer, Shasta Bible College and Graduate School
“Another example is an anthropoid sarcophagus found at the ancient Egyptian outpost city of Deir-el-Balah that depicts the encased deceased with six fingers on each hand.”
Another example, Professor Meyer said, was found at the other end of the Fertile Crescent in the library of Ashurbanipal, the Assyrian King who is also mentioned in the Bible.
Archaeologists uncovered there a seventh century BC text called the Summa Izbu, which describes polydactylism.
Professor Meyer said: “This Assyrian text interprets polydactylism to be either good luck or bad luck depending on whether the extra fingers or toes were on the left hand or foot or the right hand or foot.
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“In modern society, polydactylism is rarely observed outside the third world because such physical abnormalities are medically removed early in life.
“But in antiquity, as demonstrated by the Bible and archaeological representations from other cultures at both ends of the Fertile Crescent, the abnormality existed and was recognized.
“Six fingered giants reaching nine feet tall mentioned in the Bible may sound impossible to be true to many in our modern society but as ancient manuscripts and archaeological objects have demonstrated such unique persons existed.”
Perhaps the most famous of giants in the Bible was the warrior Goliath who, according to the Bible, was slain by David.
In 2014, a study published in the Ulster Medical Journal looked at the possibility of Goliath suffering from a hereditary pituitary disorder.
This disorder, possibly due to the AIP gene, may have resulted in familial acromegaly – a very rare disease associated with the pituitary gland producing too much growth hormone.
The study’s authors wrote: “A literal interpretation of the verses suggests that his brother and three sons were also of giant stature.
“The name of Goliath’s third son does not appear in the Bible, so we have named him Exadactylus as it was said that ‘he had on every hand six fingers, and on every foot six toes’ (Samuel 21:20-21).
“Goliath’s family tree is suggestive of a hereditary autosomal dominant pituitary gene, such as AIP2.”
However, some experts have challenged the Biblical narrative, stating there is no archaeological evidence of giants the likes of which would have been taller than Goliath.
In a 1985 article published in the journal Creation-Evolution, author JR Cole wrote: “Many historical details in the Bible can be confirmed by archaeology.
“But if some things can be confirmed, it stands to reason that some things may be falsified by material evidence.
“Creationists who accept the challenge to confirm their Bible scientifically would seem to leave open the possibility that the Bible can be proven wrong—something other creationists would call a materialist debasing of faith.
“That no giant human bones or tracks have ever been found in the Middle East is not proof that they are not there, awaiting discovery, but such a test is not crucial to most believers.”
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