What Is The Life Expectancy in Jesus Time?
What is the life expectancy in Jesus time? At any age and environment, high infant mortality rates will greatly reduce life expectancy; however, those who survive can live to old age; burial exhumations has revealed septuagenarians and even octogenarians among ancient cemetery remains.
Jesus would likely have found our modern obsession with punctuality and precise timekeeping unfathomable; time measurement wasn't considered an important priority at that point in history.
Age at Birth
Biblical men lived extremely long lives; Adam reached 912 years, Noah lived 950, and Methuselah outlived them all with an astonishing lifespan of 969 years!
Some have speculated that such long lifespans were due to environmental changes; however, if that were indeed the cause, why did lifespans decline so drastically after the Flood? More likely is it that some genetic factor was at work here.
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Not to forget is also that many children die during early childhood, which distorts the average. Adults who survived childhood, on the other hand, tended to live into their fifties or sixties.
This is in keeping with other ancient civilizations which recorded long life-spans for their leaders, and also with what the Bible teaches about future men living to great ages.
Age at Death
Historians generally agree that Jesus died at 30, according to both historical and Biblical evidence.
Life expectancy is an artificial construct with little correlation to actual length of life across time and places. For instance, environments with high rates of infant mortality will reduce average ages at death while fatal accidents or war can also have this effect. Yet just because many die young does not mean those who survive will not live into their fifties and sixties or beyond; any visit to an ancient cemetery will demonstrate this clearly.
At the dawn of civilization, longevity was not exceptional. Both Adam and Noah lived hundreds of years, as did Methuselah; while David reigned 40 years after becoming King at 30 before dying at 70 (2 Samuel 5:4).
Age at Resurrection
The Bible does not explicitly address this question, yet many speculate that infants and children who die young will remain infants and children in heaven. Elderly people could remain elderly when they pass on; however, the New Testament suggests there has been a necessary modification due to Jesus' resurrection and ascension that could alter this two-age world schema.
New Testament writers knew it was not uncommon for those in their thirties and forties to live into their eighties or nineties, especially if they survived childhood, war, contagious diseases and had not reached old age yet.
At approximately thirty, Jesus began his public ministry. Indeed, the Gospels make note that during his time with his disciples he did not grow old and frail during their ministry together.
Not to be mistaken with heaven; according to Scripture they will be raised "as firstfruits" (Revelation 20:6), however those in their 30s or 40s at death will receive a resurrection body that fast-forwards them back into life on Earth at an optimal age, giving them new lives even after having passed. So their bodies will still look youthful even though they have already died.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What was the life expectancy in Jesus time?
The life expectancy in Jesus time is 72 on the average.