Does the Bible teach that the earth is flat?

32 Answers

  • Paul
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    No, it doesn't. And even if it did, such an ancient belief about natural things would have no effect on the actual message of the Bible, which is God's plan of salvation.

  • Barney
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    (Isaiah 40:22) There is One who dwells above the CIRCLE of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers. He is stretching out the heavens like a fine gauze, And he spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.

  • 1 month ago

    It does mention the "four corners", which are compass directions... to the North, South, East and West. It describes the earth as being a sphere, which is the argument that Columbus used from the Bible with Queen Isabella to finance the ships and his exploration to the "Far East".

  • 1 month ago

    No, it does not. To arrive at that conclusion, people have to place particular interpretations on particular verses in the Bible, which were never meant to be taken literally. For example, Isaiah 40:22] “…it says God ‘sits above the circle of the earth’, which means that the Earth has a ‘circle’ not ‘is a circle’. …[a circle] also has a hole in the middle… I suspect that Isaiah would have seen the absurdity of calling the Earth a circle when (if he really believed in a flat Earth) he could have called it a disc. 

    …the Hebrew word chug – translated ‘circle’ or ‘circuit’ in our English Bibles – can mean variously ‘circle, arch, vault or compass’.  Like our own vague word ‘round’, it can be used to indicate both two and three dimensional objects. Almost certainly, Isaiah meant ‘vault’ and was referring not to the Earth at all but to the heavens. …the God who sits above the ‘vault’ of the earth (that is, who is higher than the heavens) also ‘stretches out the heavens like a curtain and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in’. You are reading poetical phenomenology, not early Greek science!" Furthermore Job 9:9 and Job 26:7 talk about a southern and northern sky. 

    Here are more quotes by that scientist, about flat earth ideas. "Did religionists really believe in a flat Earth before the advent of the scientific age? Not since Aristotle presented evidence for a spherical Earth in 330 BC, observing that southbound travellers see southern stars rising higher above the horizon. He also pointed out that the shadow of Earth on the Moon is always circular, and that only a spherical Earth could cast a circular shadow at all lunar phases. In 240 BC, Eratosthenes even calculated the Earth’s spherical circumference. In his treatise The reckoning of time, the venerable Bede (c.672 – 735) explained the varying duration of daylight in terms of ‘the roundness of the Earth’, and continues, ‘for not without reason is it called “the orb of the world” on the pages of Holy Scripture and of ordinary literature. It is, in fact, set like a sphere in the middle of the whole universe. For truly it is an orb placed in the centre of the universe; in its width it is like a circle, and not circular like a shield but rather like a ball, and it extends from its centre with perfect roundness on all sides.’ Anything Bede wrote was required reading for priests of his day.


    It is true that mediaeval scholars allegedly reverted to flat-Earth beliefs, but Jeffrey Russell (professor of history at University of California, Santa Barbara) argues in his book 'Inventing The Flat Earth: Columbus and modern historians', that the flat-Earth theory is little more than a fable used to denigrate pre-modern European civilization. 

    Source(s): Who Made God? pp 72-74, Edgar Andrews EP Books 2009
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  • 1 month ago

    The Bible is not a science textbook.  As such, it has nothing to say on the subject.  (Just as you would not pickup a Chemistry text and expect it to have a chapter on theology.)  

    The Bible uses language much the way we do today.  It talks about "sunrise" and "sunset", while we know that what we are really seeing is the rotation of the earth.  But when we use those terms we are not stating that we live in a geo-centric universe.  The Bible talks about standing on a high mountain and seeing "all the kingdoms of the world" spread out before them.  As someone who lives the Blue Ridge Mountains, I understand what that phrase meanings.  You feel like you at the top of whole world.  But when we say we can see "the whole world" from the top of the mountain, we are not stating that the world is flat and tiny.

    What the Bible does NOT have are any stories of people sailing to the end of the earth, or falling off the edge of the earth, or anything like that.  There is nothing in the Bible that says the world is flat, small, or the center of the universe.  

    To try to draw a scientific theory about the shape of the earth from the Bible is nonsense.  It is not a science text book.  So the writers never tried to put scientifically accurate details into it.  they spoke of the nature of the world the way that we all do even today.

     The Bible does not teach that the world is flat.  But the Bible is long enough that if you want to hunt through the poetry and the imagery of the Bible, you can probably find a verse somewhere that you can pull out of context by itself and try to make it show the Bible teaches a flat earth (or not a flat earth.)  But the Bible itself really says nothing on the subject.

  • Wundt
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    As usual - with the Bible - it comes down to how you interpret it.  Some people will pick out certain passages and say "Yes" and others will pick out other passages and so "No."  

    Remember that the Bible was written 1000s of years ago by people from a different culture, in different languages, translated and retranslated, edited and re-edited, interpreted and reinterpreted.  This is why we have 1000s of different denominations all claiming THEY hold the key to interpreting the Bible.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Occurrences of "flat earth" in the Bible:  0

    • Occurrences of "the Trinity is a true assessment of who God is" in the Bible: 0
      So what? Aren't you supposed to discover certain things later, as taught by most churches?

  • Jeremy
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    The Hebrew word that is used in Isaiah 40:22 (חוּג, chug) does not at all imply a spherical earth.

    The word for ball in Hebrew would be ( דּוּר, dur), and the author of Isaiah is aware of the difference.  It is used in Isaiah 22:18: He will surely violently turn and toss thee like a ball into a large country: there shalt thou die, and there the chariots of thy glory shall be the shame of thy lord's house.

    The word in 44:20 is also the root of another we see in Isaiah 44:13,  (מְחוּגׇה mechugah). This term refers to a "circle instrument," a device used to make a circle, what we call a compass.

    Isaiah 44:13 The carpenter stretcheth out his rule; he marketh it out with a line; he fitteth it with planes, and he marketh it out with the compass, and maketh it after the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain in the house.

    So, the "circle of the earth" would seem to imply a flat circle, like a coin.

  • Technically no, it does not teach that, neither does it teach the Earth is round. It's not trying to "teach" about it. However, it does imply that the Earth is flat in several places. Such as Satan taking Jesus to the top of a mountain to see all the kingdoms on Earth, or Daniel dreaming of a tree so big, it could be seen from anywhere on Earth, or God having a throne above the "circle" Earth, being able to see it all at once. Although for the last one I think is interesting. If the gods occupy the 4th dimension, they could potentially view our universe like it's flat on paper. Too bad that isn't the only passage to support a flat Earth.

  • 1 month ago

    No it does not. The Bible referring to the “circle of the earth” in Isaiah does not imply that it’s flat.

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