The Miracle of Septenary Design in the Hebrew Scriptures

First published by the Pentecostal Jewish Mission 1959

"The words of the Lord are pure words:as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times"
Psalms 12:6

We have often listened to proofs of the Divine inspiration of the Word of God. Some are based on its remarkable preservation in the face of bitter persecution, when those found with it in their possession were cruelly put to death. Other proofs have as their foundation the amazing fulfilment in detail of its abundant prophecies. Yet others stress the supernatural power the Bible has to change sinful and broken lives, turning swearing drunkards into children of God, whose lives are an incentive to holiness.

There is, however, a further and absolutely conclusive scientific and mathematical proof that the Scriptures are rock-bottom truth and directly inspired by God Himself. It is the miraculous system of sevens upon which the whole of the Word of God is built.

A Remarkable Discovery!

Some sixty years ago Dr Ivan Panin, a Russian agnostic living in the U.S.A., applied himself to the
study of the Scriptures as a matter of purely literary interest. He knew Hebrew fluently and thus had the tremendous advantage of studying the Scriptures in their original tongue. He was also a brilliant mathematician.

There is a peculiarity in the Hebrew language. Each letter also stands for a number (in other words it has a "numerical equivalent"). It will be remembered that this is also the case with Latin; we are familiar with Roman numerals on tombstones and on the fly-leaf of many books (eg, MDCCCLXXIII for 1873 AD).

Now let us take the Hebrew alphabet. You will find letters are given at the top of each section of Psalms 119 (for in the original each section begins with that Hebrew letter). In Figure 1 on page 5 are shown the numerical equivalents of each Hebrew character. Thus, if you wished to write the figure 21 you would write the letters Caph and Aleph (which stand also for 20 and 1). Dr Ivan Panin began to read the Scriptures in the original Hebrew. His mathematical mind soon noticed that if the numerical equivalents of the letters were substituted for the letters themselves a striking repetition of the number 7, and multiples of 7, stood out. At first, he gave the matter no serious consideration, but as he read on, the regularity of this sevenfold repetition made him realise that there was something here that was tremendously significant.

Panin abandoned his casual reading of the Scriptures for the sake of their literary interest and focussed his attention seriously on this remarkable discovery. He found that in every complete passage of the Old Testament in the original Hebrew this pattern stood out – there being as many as 70 to 100 features of this number 7 in a single passage.

These features he found in almost every conceivable way in which a passage could be broken down, including the parts of its grammatical construction (by a passage is meant a complete passage in the original tongue). In the longer passages each sub-division contains its own design of sevens, and in addition each contributes to the numeric design of the complete passage.

Furthermore, each complete passage is linked one to the other by the same septenary, or heptadic, design, whilst all the complete passages in an entire book are over-arched by a grand septenary design. Then again the separate books are linked one with another so that the entire volume is over-arched in the original tongues by a magnificent design of sevens!

Figure 1

The Hebrew Alphabet
(The numerical equivalents of the letters of the Hebrew Alphabet)

Hebrew Letter Numerical
Hebrew Alphabet Aleph 1
Hebrew Alphabet Beth 2
Hebrew Alphabet Gimel 3
Hebrew Alphabet Daleth 4
Hebrew Alphabet Hei 5
Hebrew Alphabet Vau 6
Hebrew Alphabet Zain 7
Hebrew Alphabet Cheth 8
Hebrew Alphabet Teth 9
Hebrew Alphabet Yod 10
Hebrew Alphabet Caph 20
Hebrew Letter Numerical
Hebrew Alphabet Lamed 30
Hebrew Alphabet Mem 40
Hebrew Alphabet Nun 50
Hebrew Alphabet Samech 60
Hebrew Alphabet Ain 70
Hebrew Alphabet Pei 80
Hebrew Alphabet Tzaddi 90
Hebrew Alphabet Koph 100
Hebrew Alphabet Resh


Hebrew Alphabet Schin 300
Hebrew Alphabet Tau 400


In the Beggining....

An Example

Assuming you have not found it too difficult to follow thus far! Let us take an example of septenary design. We will choose a simple example – in fact we’ll start at the very beginning. The first complete passage in the Old Testament is Genesis 1:1, which in the original Hebrew reads as shown in Figure 2 (don’t forget that in Hebrew we read from right to left – the opposite to English.

There we have the statement, "In the beginning God created the Heaven and the earth". Now let us examine the separate Hebrew characters and substitute the numbers for which each character stands (ie, the "numerical equivalents"). In figure 3 is indicated above each letter its name, and beneath it the number for which it also stands.

Giving the characters their numerical equivalents:   Taking the characters as they stand:  

There is one verb ("created") with a numerical value of 203, or 29 times


Total number of words is

First, middle and last letters (beth, Mem, Aleph, Tzaddi) have a numerical value of 133, or 19 times seven

Total number of letters is 28, or four times seven

First and last letters of all seven words have a numerical value of 1,393 or 199 times seven Number of letters in subject ("God") and object ("the heaven", "the earth") is 14, or twice seven
First and last letters of first and last words have a numerical value 497 or 71 times seven Number of letters in object (with untranslatable article) is 14, or twice seven
Value of remaining first and last letters is 896, or 128 times seven Object is dual – leters in first object ("the heaven" plus untranslatable article) seven
Value of last letters of first and last words is 490, or 70 times seven Letters in 2nd object("and the earth" plus translatable object) seven

Here are twelve features of seven in this brief complete passage – and this does not exhaust the features discovered in these seven words. The miracle lies in the fact that every complete passage of Scripture in the Old Testament Hebrew is built upon a design of sevens ("septenary" or "heptadic" design). Even the lists of names in Kings and Chronicles and books such as Ezra do not upset the design.

Hebrew Scriptures Unique

The significance this design of sevens is deepened by the fact that, try as one may, either in these passages quoted
or in any other in the entire compass of Scripture, no other unique numerical pattern based on another number can be discovered. No other book in the world is constructed on such a numerical design. The Apocrypha shows no trace of it whatsoever, neither do any of the Greek classics or other so-called "holy books" of the religions of the world.

Chance Design Impossible

The question naturally arises: Could this numerical phenomenon be attributed to chance? The likelihood of 12
features of sevens so occurring in a passage of moderate length is one in several billion. In the case of 24 features (which is quite a common occurrence) the chance is 1 in 191,581,231,380,566,414,000. Some passage have as many as 100 of these features of seven in their structure.
If there is only one chance is the figure quoted above that 24 features could occur accidentally, what would be the chance for, say 70 features? And some passages have even more than 70. The possibility of chance is ruled out completely.

Failure of Human attempt at design

But perhaps after all it was possible for men, uninspired by any Divine influence, to have composed the Scripture on septenary design? Dr Panin, the agnostic, tried it out. Together with two other scholars of Hebrew he spent 13 weeks trying to compose a passage and allowing for only seven features.
Dr Panin tells us that before this number of features had been attained the composition itself had become nonsensical drivel!
Now the Word of God was not compiled by learned Hebrew scholars working together, but by an amazing variety of men who differed in social standing from kings to ploughmen, including shepherds, herdsmen and fishermen. It was composed, not around a conference table with the aid of lexicons and dictionaries, but over a period of 1,600 years by unlearned
writers of different nationalities, the majority of whom never saw each other and lived as far apart as 1,500 miles.
Dr Ivan Panin, former agnostic, was forced by the sheer miracle of septenary design to the acceptance of this fact: that not only the message of the Hebrew Scriptures, but the very words in which they were written, were directly inspired by an intelligence far beyond the limits of the human mind.
His conclusion? That intelligence was GOD. And there there was simply no other explanation.

Another Significant Fact

Now here is a tremendously significant fact, which to an honest mind will be conclusive. The only other collection of writings in the world from among the whole compass of earth’s religions which is built upon septenary design IS THE NEW TESTAMENT IN THE GREEK LANGUAGE. As in the Hebrew, each letter in the Greek stands for a number also.
Dr Ivan Panin was also a fluent Greek scholar and was therefore able to tum his attention to the original language in which the New Testament was written. To his unbounded astonishment he found exactly the same mathematical formula beneath the original Greek text! As in the case of the Old Testament, he attempted to compose a passage in Greek allowing for only seven features, but he had to admit failure.

Some Examples:

Let us look at a few examples of septenary design in the New Testament:

MATTHEW – The Genealogy:

The first 17 verses of the New Testament contain the genealogy of the Christ. It consists of two main parts: verses 1 – 11 cover the period from Abraham, the father of the chosen people, to the Captivity, when they ceased as an independent people. Verses 12 – 17 cover the period from the Captivity to the promised Deliverer, the Christ. We examine the first part of this genealogy:
Its Vocabulary has 49 words or 7 x 7. This number is itself seven (feature 1) sevens (feature 2) and the sum of its factors is two sevens (feature 3). Of these 49 words, 28 or 4 x 7 begin with a vowel; and 21 or 3 x 7 begin with a consonant (feature 4).
Again: these 49 words of the vocabulary have 266 letters or 7 x 2 x 19; this number is itself 38 sevens (feature 5) and the sum of its factors is 28 or 4 sevens (feature 6), while the sum of its figures is 14 (266 = 2 + 6 + 6=14) or 2 sevens (feature 7).
Of these 266 letter, moreover, 140 or 20 sevens, are vowels and 126 or 18 sevens are consanants (feature 8).

That is to say: just as the number of words in the vocubulary is a multiple of seven, so is the number of its letters a multiple of seven; just as the sum of the factors of the number of the words is a multiple of seven, so is the sum of the factors of the number of their letters a multiple of seven. And just as the number of words is divided between vowel words and consonant words by seven, so is their number of letters divided between vowels and consonants by sevens.
Again: of these 49 words, 35 or 5 x 7 occur more than once in the passage; and 14 or 2 x 7 occur only once (feature 9); seven occur in more than one form and 42 or 6 x 7 in only one form (feature 10). And among the parts of speech the 49 words are thus divided:
Forty-two or 6 x 7 are nouns; seven are not nouns (feature 11). Of the nouns 35 or 5 x 7 are proper names; seven are common nouns (feature 12). Of the proper names 28 or 4 x 7 are male ancestors of the Christ and seven are not (feature 13).
The above enumeration of the numeric phenomena of these 11 verses does not begin to be exhaustive – pages alone would be required.

MATTHEW – the Birth.
The second part of Mathew chapter 1, verses 18 – 25, relates the birth of the Christ. It consists of 161 words or 23 x 7; occurring in 105 forms or 15 x 7, with a vocabulary of 77 words or 11 x 7. Joseph is here spoken to by the angel. Accordingly, of the 77 words, the angel uses 28 or 4 x 7; of the 105 forms, he uses 37 or 5 x 7; the numeric value of the vocabulary is 52,605 or 7,515 x 7; and of the forms 65,429 or 9,347 x 7.

MATTHEW – The Childhood.
The second chapter tells of the childhood of the Christ. Its vocabulary has 161 words or 23 x 7 with 896 letters or 128 x 7; and 238 forms or 34 x 7. The numeric value of the vocabulary is 123,529 or 17,647 x 7. Of the forms 166,985 or 23,855 sevens.
The chapter has at least four logical divisions and each division shows the same numerical phenomena found in the chapter as a whole. Thus the first six verses have a vocabulary of 56 words or 8 x 7, etc. There are also some speeches here: Herod speaks, the Magi speak, the angel speaks.
But so pronounced are the numeric phenomena that though there are, as it were, numerous rings within rings, and wheels within wheels, each is perfect in itself though forming all the while only part of the rest.
There is not, however, a single paragraph of the scores in Matthew that is not constructed in exactly the same manner. But with each additional paragraph the difficulty of constructing it increases not only in arithmetical but
in geometrical progression. For he writes his paragraphs so as to develop constantly fixed numeric relation to what goes before and after.
Thus in his last chapter he uses just seven words not used by him before. And in his first section (the genealogy discussed above) the words which are found nowhere else in the New testament occur 42 times or 7 x 6; they have 126 letters or 7 x 6 x 3 – to name only a couple of the numeric features of these particular words.

MARK. The gospel of Mark shows the very same septenary phenomena. And the actual passage which critics so triumphantly call a forgery – the last twelve verses – contain some sixty features of sevens!
These twelve verses have 175 words or 25 x 7; a ‘vocabulary of 98 words or 2 x 7 x 7; with 553 letters or 79 x 7; 133 forms or 19 x 7 – and so on to the minutest detail.

JOHN. One of the most striking examples of septenary design in the New Testament is the 17th chapter of John’s gospel. In the original Greek this beautiful chapter, where the Lord Jesus pours out His heart to His heavenly Father there are:
490 words 70 x 7 70 adverbs and
2,079 letters 297 x 7 articles 10 x 7
49 sentences 7 x 7 49 pronouns ref
1,162 vowels 166 x 7 to Christ 7 x 7
917 consonants 131 x 7 91 Refs to persons
98 verbs 14 x 7 of the Godhead 13 x 7
77 nouns 11 x 7 7 Refs to God
70 conjunctions 10 x 7 the Father 1 x 7
49 prepositions 7 x 7 7 Refs to world 1 x 7
126 pronouns 18 x 7

Chaldee & Aramaic Passages

It has been asked how the Chaldee passages in the book of Daniel fit in with Ivan Panin’s discovery. These passages, both in the books of Daniel and Jeremiah, are Chaldee words written in Hebrew characters.
There is a similar instance in the New Testament where Aramaic words appear in Greek characters eg, Talitha cumi ("Damsel, arise!)"
The Chaldee passages, therefore, contribute to the perfection of the septenary, or heptadic, design, as does the Aramaic in the New Testament.

The English Translation

Very little of this septenary design appears in our modern translations but something of it does break through here and there. It is seen in the seven petitions of the Lord’s prayer; in the seven sayings of the Cross, seven Churches in Revelation and in the 35 miracles and 35 parables recorded by the four evangelists.

That there should be 70 miracles and parables (equally divided) seems to emphasise that His doings and His sayings were in perfect agreement. How different with men, who promise so much yet cannot fulfil the half; whilst so much that they do they would be ashamed to have openly declared!

It is also seen in the 63 books of the sacred Scriptures (not 66, for Samuel, Kings and Chronicles are not in two parts in the Hebrew Bible). It is seen in the seven persons raised from the dead (two in the Old Testament and five in the New Testament).

By septenary design we can establish what the original text is, in the case of passages of Scripture which cause division.

Panin’s Challenge

Ivan Panin publicly invited the finest brains to prove that his facts were not facts; "the heavier the calibre of either scholar or mathematician", he said, "the more satisfactory to me!" He announced his readiness to take his facts "to any three prominent lawyers, or better still, to any judge of the Superior or Supreme Court, and abide by his decision as to whether the conclusion is not necessary that Divine Inspiration alone can account for the facts."
"All I should ask would be that the judge treats the case as he would any other case that comes before him: declining to admit matters for discussion as irrelevant when they are irrelevant; and listening patiently to both sides, as he does in any trial."

Facing the Facts

The significance of septenary design is tremendous. It is solemnising. It hallmarks the Old and New Testaments as being the direct pronouncements of the Creator of this limitless universe. That the Holy Scriptures have been given to mankind by the creator.

It clinches the fact that we have a heaven to gain and a hell to shun.
That the Lord Jesus Christ was the true Messiah of the Jewish nation, as foretold in Isaiah chapter 53.
That He was God.
That He is the world’s only way of salvation from sin.
That He rose from the dead.
That He is coming again – very soon.

When The Lord Jesus Christ does come – will it be as your Saviour? Or as your Judge?

Date : 30/11/-0001    

Back To List