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Sagan Signal

From personal experience I know that academics preparing for research are not interested in commentary. They want just two things: the claim and the data. They’ll take it from there.

My claim: I have discovered a non-predictive, non-algorithmic code in the Old Testament.

My data: The Sagan Signal.

The Sagan Signal is 46 triadic word sequences scattered throughout the Old Testament that share a deep and sophisticated symmetry.


The first word in each sequence is “grain,” or a word in the grain genre, such as “seed,” “field,” “bread,” or “harvest.”


The second word is “wine,” or words in the same genre, such as “vineyard,” “grape,” or “vine.”


The third word is “oil,” (from olives), or words in the same genre such as “olive trees,” “olive groves,” or “anoint.”


Out of 54 instances where grain, wine, and oil or their generic equivalents are in close textual proximity, in 46 instances the first word has to do with grain, the second word with wine, and the third word with olive oil. This is an 86% symmetry rating.


18 of the 46 sequences are identical, made up of the Hebrew words: dagan (grain), tiyrowsh (wine), and yitshar (olive oil). The other 28 sequences are modulated, employing words in the grain, wine, and oil genres. One example of a modulated sequence, found three times, is saday (field), kerem (vineyard), and zayith (oliveyard). In total, there are 18 different Hebrew words in the grain genre, 10 in the wine genre, and 8 in the oil genre.

NOTE: For simplicity's sake, the following word sequences have been isolated from the biblical verses in which they appear. To more fully appreciate the symmetry of the Sagan Signal, it is highly recommended that all verses be looked at in their entirety and in their larger context, that are posted in the second list.

The Sagan Signal (New American Standard Version)

         *(M) refers to sequences that are modulated

  1.  Ex. 23:10&11 (M)                  field                                 vineyard                              oliveyard

  2.  Deut. 6:11 (M)                        grain (storehouses)         vineyard                              olive trees

  3.  Deut. 7:13                               grain                                 wine                                    oil

  4.  Deut. 8:8 (M)                          grain                                 wine                                    oil

  5.  Deut. 11:14                             grain                                 wine                                    oil

  6.  Deut. 12:17                             grain                                 wine                                    oil

  7.  Deut. 14:23                             grain                                 wine                                    oil

  8.  Deut. 18:4                               grain                                 wine                                    oil

  9.  Deut. 28:38-40 (M)                seed                                   vineyards                            olive trees

  10. Deut. 28:38-40 (M)               field                                   wine                                    oil

  11. Deut. 28:38-40 (M)               harvest                               grapes                                 olives

  12. Josh. 24:13 (M)                     land                                   vineyards                            olives

  13. Judg. 15:5 (M)                      grain                                  vineyards                            groves

  14. 1 Sam. 8:14 (M)                   fields                                  vineyards                            olive groves

  15. 2 Kings 18:32 (M)                Grain/bread                       wine/vineyards                    oil

  16. 1 Chron. 9:29 (M)                 flour                                  wine                                     oil

  17. 1 Chron. 12:40 (M)               flour                                  wine                                     oil

  18. 1 Chron 27:26-28 (M)           field workers                     vineyards                            olive trees

  19. 1 Chron. 27:26-28 (M)          tilled soil                          wine cellars                         oil cellars

  20. 2 Chron. 2:10 (M)                 grain                                 wine                                     oil

  21. 2 Chron. 31:5                        grain                                 wine                                     oil

  22. 2 Chron. 32:28                      grain                                 wine                                     oil

  23. Ezra 3:7 (M)                         food                                   drink                                    oil

  24. Ezra 6:9 (M)                         grain                                  wine                                     oil

  25. Ezra 7:22 (M)                       grain                                  wine                                     oil

  26. Neh. 5:11                              fields                                  vineyards                            olive groves

  27. Neh. 5:11 (M)                       grain                                  wine                                     oil

  28. Neh. 10:37 (M)                     dough                                wine                                     oil

  29. Neh. 10:39                            grain                                  wine                                     oil

  30. Neh. 13:5                              grain                                  wine                                     oil

  31. Neh. 13:12                            grain                                  wine                                     oil

  32. Ps. 104:14&15 (M)               food                                   wine                                    oil

  33. Ps. 128:2&3 (M)                   labor of hands                    vines                                   olive plants

  34. Ecc. 9:7&8 (M)                     bread                                 wine                                     oil

  35. Isa. 17:5&6 (M)                    grain                                  wild grapes                          olive tree

  36. Jer. 31:12                              grain                                   wine                                    oil

  37. Dan. 10:3 (M)                       bread                                  wine                                    anoint

  38. Hos. 2:8                                grain                                   wine                                     oil

  39. Hos. 2:22                              grain                                   wine                                     oil

  40. Joel 1:10                               grain                                   wine                                     oil

  41. Joel 2:19                               grain                                   wine                                     oil

  42. Joel 2:24 (M)                        grain                                   wine                                     oil

  43. Amos 4:9 (M)                       gardens                               vineyards                             olive trees

  44. Hag. 1:11                              grain                                    wine                                    oil

  45. Hag. 2:12 (M)                       bread                                   wine                                    oil

  46. Hag. 2:19 (M)                       seed                                     vine                                     olive tree

NOTE: In the following eight triads, grain, wine and oil are out of sequence:   


1.   Ex. 29:40 – flour, oil, wine

2.   Lev. 23:13 – flour, oil, wine

3.   Num. 18:12 – oil, wine, wheat

4.   2 Chron. 2:15 – wheat, barley, oil, and wine

5.   2 Chron. 11:11 – victual, oil, wine

6.   Job 24:10&11 – sheaf, oil, winepresses

7.   Hosea 2:5 – bread, oil, drink

8.   Micah 6:15 – sow, oil, wine


In 7 of these 8 asymmetrical sequence, the order is “grain, oil and wine.” The logical explanation for this particular sequence is that in ancient Israel, flour and oil were mixed to make a dough that was baked into cakes that were then served with wine as the common beverage.


Sagan Signal sequences as they appear in verse context (NASB)


  1. Exodus 23:10&11

“You shall sow your land for six years and gather in its yield, but on the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, so that the needy of your people may eat; and whatever they leave the beast of the field may eat. You shall do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove.”


    2. Deuteronomy 6:11

“and houses full of all good things which you did not fill, and hewn cisterns which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant, and you eat and are satisfied.”


    3. Deuteronomy 7:13

“He will love you and bless you and multiply you; He will also bless the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your ground, your grain and your new wine and your oil, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock, in the land which He swore to your forefathers to give you.”


    4. Deuteronomy 8:8

“a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey;”


    5. Deuteronomy 11:14

“that He will give the rain for your land in its season, the early and late rain, that you may gather in your grain and your new wine and your oil.”


    6. Deuteronomy 12:17

You are not allowed to eat within your gates the tithe of your grain or new wine or oil, or the firstborn of your herd or flock, or any of the votive offerings which you vow, or your freewill offerings, or the contribution of your hand.”


    7. Deuteronomy 14:23

“You shall eat in the presence of the Lord your God, at the place where He chooses to establish His name, the tithe of your grain, your new wine, your oil, and the firstborn of your herd and your flock, so that you may learn to fear the Lord your God always.”


    8. Deuteronomy 18:4

“You shall give him the first fruits of your grain, your new wine, and your oil, and the first shearing of your sheep.”


      9, 10, & 11. Deuteronomy 28:38-40


“You shall bring out much seed to the field but you will gather little in, for the locust will consume it. You shall plant and cultivate vineyards, but you will neither drink of the wine nor gather the grapes, for the worm will devour them. You shall have olive trees throughout your territory but you will not anoint yourself with the oil, for your olives will drop off.”


      12. Joshua 24:13


“I gave you a land on which you had not labored, and cities which you had not built, and you have lived in them; you are eating of vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant.”

      13. Judges 15:5


“When he had set fire to the torches, he released the foxes into the standing grain of the Philistines, thus burning up both the shocks and the standing grain, along with the vineyards and groves.”


      14. 1 Samuel 8:14


“He will take the best of your fields and your vineyards and your olive groves and give them to his servants.”


      15. 2 Kings 18:32


“until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees and honey, that you may live and not die.”


      16. 1 Chronicles 9:29


“Some of them also were appointed over the furniture and over all the utensils of the sanctuary and over the fine flour and the wine and the oil and the frankincense and the spices.”


      17. 1 Chronicles 12:40


“Moreover those that were near to them, even as far as Issachar and Zebulum and Naphtali, brought food on donkeys, camels, mules and on oxen, great quantities of flour cakes, fig cakes and bunches of raisins, wine, oil, oxen and sheep. There was joy indeed in Israel.”


      18. & 19. 1 Chronicles 27:26-28


“Ezri the son of Chelub had charge of the agricultural workers who tilled the soil. Shimei the Ramathite had charge of the vineyards; and Zabdi the shiphmite had charge of the produce of the vineyards stored in the wine cellars. Baal-hanan the Gederite had charge of the olive and sycamore trees in the Shephelah; and Joash had charge of the stores of oil.”


      20. 2 Chronicles 2:10


“Now behold, I will give to your servants, the woodsmen who cut the timber, 20,000 kors of crushed wheat and 20,000 kors of crushed barley, and 20,000 baths of wine and 20,000 baths of oil.”


      21. 2 Chronicles 31:5


“As soon as the order spread, the sons of Israel provided in abundance the first fruits of grain, new wine, oil, honey and of all the produce of the field; and they brought in abundantly the tithes of all.”


      22. 2 Chronicles 32:28


“storehouses also for he produce of grain, wine, and oil, pens for all kinds of cattle and sheepfolds for the flocks.”


      23. Ezra 3:7


“then they gave money to the masons and carpenters, and food, drink, and oil to the Sidonians and to the Tyrians, to bring cedar wood from Lebanon to the sea at Joppa, according to the permission they had from Cyrus king of Persia.”


      24. Ezra 6:9


“Whatever is needed, both young bulls, rams, and lambs for a burnt offering to the God of heaven, and wheat, salt, wine, and anointing oil, as the priests in Jerusalem request, it is to be given to them daily without fail,”


      25. Ezra 7:22


“even up to 100 talents of silver, 100 kors of wheat, 100 baths of wine, 100 baths of oil, and salt as needed.”


      26. & 27. Nehemiah 5:11


“Please, give back to them this very day their fields, their vineyards, their olive groves and their houses, also the hundredth part of the money and of the grain, the new wine and the oil that you are exacting from them.”


      28. Nehemiah 10:37


“We will also bring the first of our dough, our contributions, the fruit of every tree, the new wine and the oil to the priests at the chambers of the house of our God, and the tithe of our ground to the Levites, for the Levites are they who receive the tithes in all the rural towns.”


      29. Nehemiah 10:39


“For the sons of Israel and the sons of Levi shall bring the contribution of the grain, the new wine and the oil to the chambers; there are the utensils of the sanctuary, the priests who are ministering, the gatekeepers and the singers.”


      30. Nehemiah 13:5


“had prepared a large room for him, where formerly they put the grain offerings, the frankincense, the utensils and the tithes of grain, wine and oil prescribed for the Levites, the singers and the gatekeepers, and the contributions for the priests.”


      31. Nehemiah 13:12


“All Judah then brought the tithe of the grain, wine and oil into the storehouses.”


      32. Psalm 104:14 & 15


“He causes the grass to grow for the cattle, and vegetation for the labor of man, so that he may bring forth food from the earth, and wine which makes man’s heart glad, so that he may make his face glisten with oil, and food which sustains man’s heart.”


      33. Psalm 128:2&3


“When you shall eat the fruit of your hands, you will be happy and it will be well with you. Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine within your house, your children like olive plants around your table.”


      34. Ecclesiastes 9:7&8


“Go then, eat your bread in happiness and drink your wine with a cheerful heart; for God has already approved your works. Let your clothes be white all the time, and let not oil be lacking on your head.”


      35. Isaiah 17:5&6


“It will be even like the reaper gathering standing grain, as his arms harvests the ears, or it will be like one gleaning ears of grain in the valley of Rephaim. yet gleanings [wild grapes]  will be left in it like the shaking of an olive tree, two or three olives on the topmost bough, four or five on the branches of a fruitful tree, declares the Lord, the God of Israel.”


      36. Jeremiah 31:12


“They will come and shout for joy on the height of Zion, and they will be radiant over the bounty of the Lord – over the grain and the new wine and the oil, and over the young of the flock of the herd; and their life will be like a watered garden, and they will never languish again.”


      37. Daniel 10:3


“I did not eat any tasty food, nor did meat or wine enter my mouth, nor did I use any ointment at all until the entire three weeks were completed.”


      38. Hosea 2:8


“For she does not know that it was I who gave her the grain, the new wine and the oil, and lavished on her silver and gold, which they used for Baal.”


      39. Hosea 2:22


“And the earth will respond to the grain, to the new wine and the oil, and they will respond to Jezreel.”


      40. Joel 1:10


“The field is ruined, the land mourns; for the grain is ruined, the new wine dries up, fresh oil fails.”


      41. Joel 2:19


“The Lord will answer and say to His people, Behold, I am going to send you grain, new wine and oil, and you will be satisfied in full with them; and I will never again make you a reproach among the nations.”


      42. Joel 2:24


“The threshing floors will be full of grain, and the vats will overflow with the new wine and oil.”


      43. Amos 4:9


“I smote you with scorching wind and mildew; and the caterpillar was devouring your many gardens and vineyards, fig trees and olive trees; yet you have not returned to me, declares the Lord.”


      44. Haggai 1:11


“I called for a drought on the land, on the mountains, on the grain, on the new wine, on the oil, on what the ground produces, on men, on cattle, and on all the labor of your hands.”


      45. Haggai 2:12


“If a man carries holy meat in the fold of his garment, and touches bread with this fold, or cooked food, wine, oil, or any other food, will it become holy? And the priests answered, ‘No.’”


      46. Haggai 2:19


“Is the seed still in the barn? Even including the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate and the olive tree, it has not borne fruit. Yet from this day on I will bless you.”

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