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What Is The Rapture
You can get a reasonable scholarly explanation by doing the following Google search "Rapture Theory History" include the quotes at either end to make it a literal search key. There will be only one hit, the link should take you to a page titled The Pretribulation Rapture: Fact or Fiction, Truth or Hoax? You can not do this subject justice in 85 words. There are Theological Dictionaries and Topical Bibles on line, use them. You are not going to get good answers from the Blogs.

When Was The First Bible Written
You are asking a question that takes a small book to answer well. Are you concerned with OT or NT? How we got the number of books down to 66? Are you just interested in the history of English Language translations? In general any modern text is better than older text, KJV and the like because we have a greater number of source documents to use then 14th - 17th century translators did. A good place to start would be the Encyclopedia Britanica. It won't cover everything, but I will give you a space to start

Explain Genesis 6:3
In my citation below part 1 of 1 the search expression should be:

((Lifespan) AND "Canopy Theory")

Microsoft Word does not use an askii II quote character and they fall off when transmited.

Explain Genesis 6:3
Part 1 of 3

Ann and Daniels answers are about the best ones, it has to do with s subject called Canopy Theory try pasting this search into to Google and executing it. You will still get a lot of hits but most will be useful. Always set you references per page to max, it is a lot quicker then 10 page refreshes.

((Lifespan) AND Canopy Theory)

It has to do with the amount of ultraviolet the earth was getting effecting longevity.

Explain Genesis 6:3
Part 2 of 3

By the time of the Exile the average life span of a Hebrew slave was about 40 years (nothing to do with climatic conditions just to maltreatment and a hard life) one generation that is why the number 40 shows up so much it is not a literal 40, it is simply a reference to a block of time of roughly a generation.

Explain Genesis 6:3
Part 3 of 3

A couple of technical hints that make Internet life much easier, use the Google tool bar for no other reason then the site search feature. I can find files on servers that arent even publicly linked. I use Internet Explorer, Netscape, and Firefox concurrently. That way you can work doing searches without loosing youre the currency of your file positions. Build your post off line in word processor if they are multi part load them in reverse order.

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