In 1958, Rabbi Weissmandel found hidden word patterns that were related to each other in the first five books of the Holy Bible, otherwise known as the Torah or Pentateuch. By selecting sequences of equally spaced text in the Bible, he found meaningful word pairs in close proximity to each other. He called these equidistant letter sequences or “ELS” for short. For this reason, he felt the authorship of the Torah had to have come from a DIVINE source. Some word pairs were predictive, that is, they could not have been known to the human authors of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament simply because events they predicted occurred long after the first five books of the Holy Bible were composed.
Both Orthodox Jews and Christian fundamentalists believe that the word of God is inspired, infallible and authoritative. However, Orthodox Jews contend that every letter of the Torah was dictated directly to Moses by God in a precise and unerring sequence. In 1988, a paper was released by Doron Witztum, Eliyahu Rips and Yoav Rosenburg from the Hebrew University and Jerusalem College of Technology titled, “Equidistant Letter Sequences in the Book of Genesis". This paper was published in the distinguished Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. The research team headed by these authors decided to see if the findings of Rabbi Weissmandel could be explained purely on fortuitous combinations. They took 300 pairs of Hebrew words, at random, with related meanings from the book of Genesis as given in the Orthodox translation known as the textus reciptus or Masoretic text. They treated the text as a string of letters, having removed spaces and other grammatical dividers. This produced Hebrew characters that could be looked at horizontally, vertically or diagonally, as one would play tic-tac-toe. The researchers would start at the beginning until they came to the first letter of a specific sequence, then look to see if a second letter could be found in as many letters away, first horizontally, then vertically and finally diagonally. Thereafter they would investigate other sequences. In this fashion they searched every letter and sequence.
For example, the researchers found a word pair of Zedekiah (a sixth century B.C. king of Judah) and Mantanya,Zedekiah’s original name (see 2 Kings 24:17). For example, Zedekiah may have been spelled out every second letter as....
a t o w c k z i e p d w e 1 k q i z a i h t z d t
whereas Mantanya may have been spelled out as every third letter in the text sequence.(1)
a z y e m e t a u i n z o t h w a b w n s v y r n a t i
The published results show that this finding was very significant, that is, the odds of its occurring merely by chance was less than 1 in 50 quadrillion (1:50,000,000,000,000,000). A finding in most scientific journals is considered significant at chance levels of anything less than 1 in 20(1:20).(2)
The capacity to embed so many, meaningfully related, randomly selected word pairs in a text with a coherent surface meaning is beyond the capability of any human being. Jeffery Satinover, a psychiatrist and lecturer on the relationship between science and religion said in an interview
*Jot means Iota, the equivalent to the Hebrew yod, the smallest letter in the Hebrew alphabet.
**Tittle means the small decoration or “crown” on some Hebrew letters in handwritten scrolls of th Torah.