How Long Will Man Live, 120 years or 70?

Supposed contradiction and verses:

How long does man live. Genesis 6:3 says 120 years but Psalm 90:10 says 70 years; yet in Genesis 11 we see that people lived hundreds of years.

120 years:

Genesis 6:3

And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

70 years:

Psalm 90:10

The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.


   The skeptic/atheist has made several assumptions of which arenít true since they donít read the Bible. In Genesis 6, God is not telling how long man will live. Remember, in Genesis 5 we saw some very impressive years of age, with many over 900 years old! They assumed that this meant that long of life would not be obtainable anymore after the flood. The fact is, God was saying that it would be only 120 more years before He would destroy the world due to its wickedness. Noah used this time to both build the ark and preach repentance to a world that did not listen. 

   In the verse in Psalm, God reveals an estimation by which we can all expect to live, for the most part. The idea is that men would not live 900+ years as they had before. But in reading the whole verse, we see David says it is around 70 years, but even if it is 80 it is still short. We have seen people live well over 100 years. This is not the rule, but rather the exception because on average, it is closer to what scripture says. And some donít even make it close to 70. What the reader should take away from this passage is that life, even if you live past 70, is short, very short, especially compared to eternity. That is where our focus should be, on where we will spend time without an end. Also, in that time we are alive, what are we doing with our lives to serve the Lord and help our fellow man. There is no contradiction.

In His Grace,

            Mike Harris


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