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## #1 2024-05-14 13:28:24

mathxyz
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From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Probability of Rapture Event

In the Bible we read in various books that Jesus (the groom) will return for His bride (the church) at an hour we do not expect. The exact day and hour of the rapture of the church is not given in the Bible. However, Jesus instructed His followers to be ready for His any day return. If Jesus can return for the church any day and hour, what is the probability that He could return today? Can this even be a math question? I say the probability is zero or DNE because we don't know when Jesus is coming back again.

You say?

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## #2 2024-05-14 17:00:29

Keep_Relentless
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From: Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2024-05-05
Posts: 61

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

I think the probability is small but positive, but the probability drops the later in the day it is.

"The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible." -Albert Einstein.

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## #3 2024-05-14 22:11:24

paulb203
Member
Registered: 2023-02-24
Posts: 192

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

I think the probability is small but positive, but the probability drops the later in the day it is.

Probability is; Outcome / Possible Outcomes, yeah?

E.g, Single zero roulette wheel when betting on 36; P(1/37)

But if you say the probability for a Jesus comeback small does that mean you are assuming it is possible? If so, why?

It surprises me when scientists, sometimes reknowned ones, say, "Well, anything is POSSIBLE." Is anything possible?

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## #4 2024-05-14 22:30:13

Keep_Relentless
Member
From: Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2024-05-05
Posts: 61

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

They say anything is possible because there is no logical contradiction if it were to happen. There is no logical contradiction in a miracle occurring. No scientific theory can prove a miracle could never happen. It can only show that it is very improbable - since it has not occurred in many repetitions/trials. But that does not get the probability to zero, it just gets it very small.

Of course if a naturalistic view is correct where the laws of nature are absolutely inviolable then the probability is zero. But I don't know how you could establish with literally 100% confidence that this is the case.

So, basically, anything that is conceivable is possible. That's how it looks to me at least.

"The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible." -Albert Einstein.

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## #5 2024-05-14 22:36:46

Keep_Relentless
Member
From: Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2024-05-05
Posts: 61

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

I don't think it is as simple as Outcome / Possible Outcomes (at least not at the macro-level). Although it's good for die or roulette, that model assumes every outcome is equally likely. But through induction we can say that, in general, a miraculous event is much less likely than a natural one. So we have to weight the different outcomes differently. It's further complicated by the fact that there are an infinite number of events, miraculous or natural, that could take place given enough time/space (or arbitrarily small units of space/time).

Last edited by Keep_Relentless (2024-05-14 23:12:25)

"The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible." -Albert Einstein.

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## #6 2024-05-14 23:50:14

Bob
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Registered: 2010-06-20
Posts: 10,464

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

There are two ways of getting a probability: theoretical and experimental.

eg. Theoretical: What's the probability of drawing an ace from a pack of cards. We can ask

In this case, there are 52 events of which 4 give us an ace (but check they're equally likely) so 4/52

eg Experimental.  I've got a box of 100 similar drawing pins. I give it a good shake and scatter them on a table surface. Some may land pin up and some may land pin touching the table. Calculate the P(pin up) by counting

I doubt you could get an answer any other way but by doing the experiment.  If a pin were made with a 1cm diameter base and a 1metre pin then I'm pretty confident P(pin up) would be zero. If the base were large, say 1 metre and the pin tiny, say 1 mm. then I think they'd all land pin up. But for normal pins there's no way to theoretically assess this.

So back to the question.  Is there any theory that could help here? Don't think so. Could we use an experiment? Only if we have a large number of parallel universes where the event has already happened.  So P(Jesus returns today) is indeterminant.  I also think that's the point. Jesus didn't want his followers to cram a load of good works the day before His return. He wanted them to be ever ready; ie. behave as instructed all the time every day. The Koran carries a similar message.

Bob

Children are not defined by school ...........The Fonz
You cannot teach a man anything;  you can only help him find it within himself..........Galileo Galilei
Sometimes I deliberately make mistakes, just to test you!  …………….Bob

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## #7 2024-05-15 00:06:20

Keep_Relentless
Member
From: Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2024-05-05
Posts: 61

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Good post Bob.

But I have some doubts that we can't say anything at all.

Can we generalise this to say there is no way of determining the probability of an event that violates the laws of nature?

It seems to me like the probability should be much higher if you believe the sources that claim miracles have happened (in connection with Jesus).

And much lower given that many experiments have been done in which the laws were not violated.

If you believe the Bible 100%, then the probability of a rapture occurring is 100%. The only question is when.

If you don't believe the Bible 100%, then I would expect the probability of a rapture to be getting lower with every day that passes without a rapture, and every day that passes with no independent confirmation of miracles.

Am I over-surmising here?

K_R

Last edited by Keep_Relentless (2024-05-15 00:44:16)

"The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible." -Albert Einstein.

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## #8 2024-05-15 03:03:28

mathxyz
Member
From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

I think the probability is small but positive, but the probability drops the later in the day it is.

Someone said that the rapture is 2000 years of any day now. It's hard to ignore those words. However, I refuse to walk through life without hope, without thinking that perhaps one day not too far in the distant future, this wonderful event will actually take place for those who love the Lord.

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## #9 2024-05-15 03:04:48

mathxyz
Member
From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

paulb203 wrote:
Keep_Relentless wrote:

I think the probability is small but positive, but the probability drops the later in the day it is.

Probability is; Outcome / Possible Outcomes, yeah?

E.g, Single zero roulette wheel when betting on 36; P(1/37)

But if you say the probability for a Jesus comeback small does that mean you are assuming it is possible? If so, why?

It surprises me when scientists, sometimes reknowned ones, say, "Well, anything is POSSIBLE." Is anything possible?

Someone said that the rapture is 2000 years of any day now. It's hard to ignore those words. However, I refuse to walk through life without hope, without thinking that perhaps one day not too far in the distant future, this wonderful event will actually take place for those who love the Lord.

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## #10 2024-05-15 03:06:10

mathxyz
Member
From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

They say anything is possible because there is no logical contradiction if it were to happen. There is no logical contradiction in a miracle occurring. No scientific theory can prove a miracle could never happen. It can only show that it is very improbable - since it has not occurred in many repetitions/trials. But that does not get the probability to zero, it just gets it very small.

Of course if a naturalistic view is correct where the laws of nature are absolutely inviolable then the probability is zero. But I don't know how you could establish with literally 100% confidence that this is the case.

So, basically, anything that is conceivable is possible. That's how it looks to me at least.

I concur.

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## #11 2024-05-15 03:07:56

mathxyz
Member
From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

I don't think it is as simple as Outcome / Possible Outcomes (at least not at the macro-level). Although it's good for die or roulette, that model assumes every outcome is equally likely. But through induction we can say that, in general, a miraculous event is much less likely than a natural one. So we have to weight the different outcomes differently. It's further complicated by the fact that there are an infinite number of events, miraculous or natural, that could take place given enough time/space (or arbitrarily small units of space/time).

Interesting reply worth a second discussion.

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## #12 2024-05-15 03:09:36

mathxyz
Member
From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Bob wrote:

There are two ways of getting a probability: theoretical and experimental.

eg. Theoretical: What's the probability of drawing an ace from a pack of cards. We can ask

In this case, there are 52 events of which 4 give us an ace (but check they're equally likely) so 4/52

eg Experimental.  I've got a box of 100 similar drawing pins. I give it a good shake and scatter them on a table surface. Some may land pin up and some may land pin touching the table. Calculate the P(pin up) by counting

I doubt you could get an answer any other way but by doing the experiment.  If a pin were made with a 1cm diameter base and a 1metre pin then I'm pretty confident P(pin up) would be zero. If the base were large, say 1 metre and the pin tiny, say 1 mm. then I think they'd all land pin up. But for normal pins there's no way to theoretically assess this.

So back to the question.  Is there any theory that could help here? Don't think so. Could we use an experiment? Only if we have a large number of parallel universes where the event has already happened.  So P(Jesus returns today) is indeterminant.  I also think that's the point. Jesus didn't want his followers to cram a load of good works the day before His return. He wanted them to be ever ready; ie. behave as instructed all the time every day. The Koran carries a similar message.

Bob

Someone said that the rapture is 2000 years of any day now. It's hard to ignore those words. However, I refuse to walk through life without hope, without thinking that perhaps one day not too far in the distant future, this wonderful event will actually take place for those who love the Lord.

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## #13 2024-05-15 03:26:34

mathxyz
Member
From: Brooklyn, NY
Registered: 2024-02-24
Posts: 1,053

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

Good post Bob.

But I have some doubts that we can't say anything at all.

Can we generalise this to say there is no way of determining the probability of an event that violates the laws of nature?

It seems to me like the probability should be much higher if you believe the sources that claim miracles have happened (in connection with Jesus).

And much lower given that many experiments have been done in which the laws were not violated.

If you believe the Bible 100%, then the probability of a rapture occurring is 100%. The only question is when.

If you don't believe the Bible 100%, then I would expect the probability of a rapture to be getting lower with every day that passes without a rapture, and every day that passes with no independent confirmation of miracles.

Am I over-surmising here?

K_R

Excellent reply just like that of Bob's.

My thoughts:

1. The rapture of the church is exactly that---for believers in Jesus Christ. It is not called the rapture of the whole world.

2. The rapture is a supernatural event that can only be done by a supernatural being.

3. Interestingly, in the Bible we read of several SMALLER RAPTURE EVENTS that have already occurred. We know that Enoch and Elijah were transported from this earth to another realm without experiencing physical death. According to the Bible, they are both in Heaven. How did they get there without dying? They were raptured. There is no other explanation.

4. The difference between the SMALLER RAPTURE events that have already occurred and the rapture of the church is that the rapture of the church involves MORE PEOPLE----MILLIONS of saints (DEAD OR ALIVE) will be "caught up to meet the Lord in the air" as stated by the apostle Paul.

5. Anything is not possible with humans. Anything is possible with God who is a supernatural being with supernatural abilities that we as humans do not have. Do you think it is impossible for God to raise the dead? God created the oceans, humans, animals, plant life, mountains, rivers, clouds, space, planets, stars, etc. A rapture event should be a walk in the park for a supernatural being.

You say?

Last edited by mathxyz (2024-05-15 03:30:11)

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## #14 2024-05-17 06:17:13

paulb203
Member
Registered: 2023-02-24
Posts: 192

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

They say anything is possible because there is no logical contradiction if it were to happen. There is no logical contradiction in a miracle occurring. No scientific theory can prove a miracle could never happen. It can only show that it is very improbable - since it has not occurred in many repetitions/trials. But that does not get the probability to zero, it just gets it very small.

Of course if a naturalistic view is correct where the laws of nature are absolutely inviolable then the probability is zero. But I don't know how you could establish with literally 100% confidence that this is the case.

So, basically, anything that is conceivable is possible. That's how it looks to me at least.

Thanks. So is 'Anything is possible', in this context, shorthand for, 'Anything is possible, LOGICALLY speaking'? Which may be followed up by, 'Whether anything is PHYSICALLY possible is another matter.'?

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## #15 2024-05-17 06:25:13

paulb203
Member
Registered: 2023-02-24
Posts: 192

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Keep_Relentless wrote:

If you believe the Bible 100%, then the probability of a rapture occurring is 100%. The only question is when.

If you don't believe the Bible 100%, then I would expect the probability of a rapture to be getting lower with every day that passes without a rapture, and every day that passes with no independent confirmation of miracles.

K_R

Is the probability of the above not x/y, regardless of what one believes?

Is the probability of 36 appearing on single zero (unbiased) roulette wheel (with no shenanigans from the croupier/player, etc) is 1/37 regardless of the beliefs of any onlooker/s?

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## #16 2024-05-28 22:32:48

Keep_Relentless
Member
From: Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2024-05-05
Posts: 61

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

Hey paulb203, sorry for the delay,

Whether anything is physically possible depends on whether the laws of nature can be broken.

We have insufficient information to determine a probability. I speak about probabilities relative to beliefs because there is no proof of which beliefs are true. With roulette mathematics can show what the probabilities are objectively and which beliefs are true or false. There is no mathematics to show whether the Bible is true in its prediction of a second coming, or whether miracles are possible.

Of course it either is or it isn't, they either are or they aren't. But since I cannot demonstrate which it is I talk about both possibilities, conditionally.

Another way to look at it is there is some probability that miracles occur, and some probability they don't - there is some probability a rapture will occur, and some probability it won't - but I do not make claims about what those probabilities are. I just made some general observations about how they may relate to each other or change over time.

Last edited by Keep_Relentless (2024-05-28 22:35:09)

"The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible." -Albert Einstein.

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## #17 2024-05-30 00:00:12

KerimF
Member
From: Aleppo-Syria
Registered: 2018-08-10
Posts: 196

### Re: Probability of Rapture Event

While I respect all other’s interesting answers, here is mine:

The probability for Jesus to return back to the planet earth is zero.
Speaking logically (since we are in a math forum), there is no reason, at all, for Jesus to return back.

But this 'logical view' doesn’t prevent zillions of world’s men who like to see in Him an 'earthly' ultimate King (by the way, this earthly view is very clear on the Gospel during His Crucifixion), to believe that He will come back to rule, with them, the tiny planet Earth (and to live, therefore, the death of Earth as well!).

Is it hard to get what I say?

Let us recall that, on the Gospel, even the well-educated ruler, Nicodemus, who was very serious and came to Jesus to learn from Him, couldn’t understand His 'spiritual' message. Why? Well, I am afraid I have to leave it as an exercise for some of you to solve

Last edited by KerimF (2024-05-30 00:02:47)

Every living thing has no choice but to execute its pre-programmed instructions embedded in it (known as instincts).
But only a human may have the freedom and ability to oppose his natural robotic nature.
But, by opposing it, such a human becomes no more of this world.

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