Subject: The Flood and creation Topics: }Religion's views }Science's views }Parallel myths

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Subject: The Flood and creation Topics: }Religion's views }Science's views }Parallel myths }Subject: Noah's Ark - the construction problems }What to leave behind }Subject: the issue of marine animals being left behind }The Noah's Ark Myths }misc concerning the flood } hydraulic sorting } timing problems } folded rocks show that it was done when they were soft ------------------------------------------------------------------------ By Davis A. Young, a conservative evangelical writer who is also a geologist. Autor of two books devoted to separating evangelical theology from young-earth and creation-science theories. "What is much more likely to undermine Christian fath is the dogmatic and persistent effort of creationists to present their theory before the public, Christian and non-Christian, as in accord with Scripture and nature, especially when the evidence to the contrarty has been presented again and again by competent Christian Scientists (e.g. Davis A. Young, Creation and the Flood, D. E. Wonderly's God's Time-Records in Ancient Sediments, and numerous articles published over the years in Journal of the American Scientific Affiliation) It is sad that so much Christian energy has to be wasted in proposing and refuting the false theory of catastrophic Flood geology. But Christians need to know the truth and to be warned of error." "The faith of many Christian people could be hindered when they ultimately realize that the teachings of the creationists are simply not in accord with the facts." "Furthermore, creationism and Flood geology have put a serious roadblock in the way of unbelieving scientists. Although Christ has the power to save unbelievers in spite of our foolishness and poor presentation of the gospels, Christians should do all they can to avoid creating unnecessary stumbling blocks to the reception of the gospel." In closing: "We are all dealing with God's world and with God-created facts...We must handle the data reverently and worshipfully, yet we should not be afraid of where the facts may lead. God made those facts, and they fit into His comprehensive plan for the world." "Another possible danger is that in presenting the gospel to the lost and in defending God's truth we ourselves will seem to be false. It is time for Christian people to recognize that the defense of this modern, young-Earth, Flood-geology creationism is simply not truthful. It is simply not in accord with the facts that God has given. Creationism must be abandoned by Christians before harm is done. The persistent attempt of the creationist movement to get their points of view established in educational institutions can only bring harm to the Christian cause. Can we seriously expect non-Christian educational leaders to develop a respect for Christianity if we insist on teaching the brand of science that creationism brings with it? Will not the forcing of modern creationism on the public simply lend credence to the idea already entertained by so many intellectual leaders that Christianity, at least in its modern form, is sheer anti-intellectual obscurantism? I fear that it will." [_Christianitiy and the Age of the Earth_, by Davis Young, Zondervan 1982. p. 163.] This is from G.T. Bettany, _Encyclopedia of World Religions_, a reproduction of an 1890 manuscript. My copy is (partially) copyright 1988, Dorset Press, New York. This is all direct quotes, with my comments in square brackets. Keep in mind that this predates many important discoveries, including, I think, the Dead Sea Scrolls. Book V., Egyptian and Semitic Religions Ch. 2, The Babylonian, Assyrian, and Phoenician Religions p. 493 [discussing the find, in 1872, of a set of Chaldean cosmology tablets by one George Smith. No dates attached, other than they represent comparatively late versions of a very early set of legends] But while there is great interest in finding a Chaldean legend agreeing in some features with that of Genesis, there is no warrant for saying that either of the accounts has given rise to the other; but that they have some connection is very possible. They are of special importance, however, in anthropology as examples of the ways in which the human mind has explained creation... . . . Among other early Chaldean fragments is one which appears to describe a parallel incident to the confusion of tongues at Babel... . . . p. 494 In the great Epic of Izdubar or Gishubar, also discovered by Mr. Smith in 1872, we have a Semitic translation of the exploits of an early Accadian king or primitive Hercules, arranged on a solar plan [reference to the format of the tablets? not sure], which accords with the representation of the hero as sun-god. In many ways the events recorded in the epic corespond to the twelve labours of Hercules; and it may be that the Izdubar legend is one of the early forms from which Phoenicia and then Greece derived the famous myth. The most perfect tablet is that which describes a deluge, which has been very generally identified with that of Noah. The character of Izdubar corresponds exactly to that of Nimrod in Genesis; and it is not certain that the names may not be identical, for Izdubar is but a provisional rendering. The deluge, according to the Chaldean epic, was due to the judgment of the gods Anu, Bel, and Ninip, and Ea told the "man of Surripak", Samas-Napiati (the living sun), to build a ship to preserve plants and living beings; it was to be 600 cubits long, and 60 broad and high. Numerous details of the building and construction are given; and Xisuthrus with his people, and animals, and plants, and food had entered the ship, "the waters of dawn arose at daybreak, a black cloud from the horizon of heaven. Rimmon in the midst of it thundered, and Nebo and the wind-god went in front." The earth was covered, and all living things destroyed. Even the gods were afraid at the whirlwind,and took refuge in the heaven of Anu. After six days and nights the storm abated, and the rain ceased, and the wind and deluge ended. "I watched the sea making a noise, and the whole of mankind were turned to clay, like reeds the corpses floated...In the country of Nizir (east of Assyria) rested the ship; the mountain of Nizir stopped the ship,and to pass over it it was not able...On the seventh day I sent forth a dove, and it left. The dove went, it returned, and a resting-place it did not find, and it came back." Later a raven was sent forth, and it did not return. Then the ship was opened, the animals came forth, sacrifice was offered to the gods, and Xisuthrus became the father of Izdubar, himself being later translated to live as a god. We cannot attempt a detailed comparison of the Chaldean and Noachian floods, for which reference must be made to Professor Sayce's edition of Mr. Smith's "Chaldean Account of Genesis"; but we may remark that this deluge narrative, perhaps more than anything else, shows how closely the narratives in Genesis are related to Chaldean traditions or sources of information. Book VI, The Jewish Religion Ch. 1, Early History - Moses p. 586 ...There are many indications in the Pentateuch that it was at least extensively revised long after the date of Moses; and indeed, there is nowhere in the Pentateuch any assertion that Moses wrote the books which have generally been attributed to him, and which speak of him in the third person... A most conspicuous result of modern criticism of the Pentateuch, is the discernment of at least two authors or documents, one describing the supreme God as Elohim, "the Mighty", a plural title which well understoof by the peoples surrounding the early Israelites, and among whom the briefer El was a common designation for their own chief deity; the other using the term Jehovah, or Jahveh, translated "the Lord". A third variation is found when the names are coupled together. The passage in Exodus vi.3...appears to fix all narratives in which the name Jehovah is used as later than that revelation to Moses; but this is by no means agreed upon by critics. We may, however, study the religious development of the Jews in two periods -- that in which the name of the Deity was some form of El or Elohim, and that in which it was Jehovah. . . [stuff of some interest on the Creation descriptions in Genesis, I hope to get back to this later] . . [The preface to the Pentateuch in my New Scofield Reference Edition, 1967, say in part: Certain critics have denied that Moses wrote Genesis to Deuteronomy despite the fact that they were attributed to Moses by the Lord Jesus Christ (where did he say that? I'm curious and haven't been able to find it). The arguments against Moses' authorship are chiefly based on the variation of the names of God (Elohim and Jehovah), the differences in style and vocabulray, and the presence of more than one account of the same event, e.g. the creation of man Gen. 1:26 and 2:7. These contentions have been adequately answered in that the variation in divine names is for the purpose of revealing certain aspects of God's character; the style is dependent on the subject matter; and the so-called parallel accounts, well known in ancient Near Eastern literature, are intended to add details to the first account. ] [Pretty weak arguments, to me, remembering that authorship was considered relatively unimportant until recent times. We now return you to your regularly scheduled Bettany.] p. 590 In the history of Noah we come into closer contact with the traditions of other nations, and especially with the Chaldean deluge story, already referred to (p.494). Moral evil had risen to a great height, owing, as the early Hebrews believed, to an intermixture of the daughters of Adam with a powerful race, the sons of Elohim, or the mighty ones, giving rise to "giants". [why haven't we seen fossils of these giants?]...We need not follow the details of the Flood...The conception of a plain only broken by comparatively low hills, covered by water as far as the eye could see, suffices to adequately fulfill the conditions really demanded. The "mountains of Ararat" are rendered the "mountains of Armenia" by many, and it is nowhere said that the highest mountains were meant... [Weren't the other races supposed to have been descended from Adam's other children? How did they survive the Flood?] ...The rainbow was to Noah the sign of this covenant, a fact by no means implying, what so many have imagined, that the rainbow then first appeared... The next great cosmological conception in the Book of Genesis is in the story by which the variety of languages was accounted for. It is closely paralleled by some fragments of Babylonian tablets in which are described the anger of Bel at the sin of the builders of the walls of Babylon and the mound of the towerr or palace. The builders, whose attempts were directed against the gods, were confounded on the mound, as well as their speech... [Bettany goes on to say that accurate historical accounts, in his opinion, begin with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.] Book III, Brahmanism Ch. I, The Early Vedic Religion p. 189 In the Satapatha-Brahmana, perhaps the most interesting of all these books, there is found an early tradition of a flood. Manu, a holy man, was warned by a fish that a flood would sweep away all creatures, but he would resce him. He was directed to build a ship and enter it when the flood rose; he did so, and fastened the fish to the ship, and was drawn by it beyond the northern mountains. When the flood subsided Manu was the only man left; a daughter was mysteriously born to him by virtue of religious rites, and ultimately the world was peopled with the sons of Manu. In later times it was said that the fish was an incarnation of Brahma, who assumed that form in order to preserve Manu. [I seem to also recall, from my days as a Boy Scout learning Indian history, that some American Indians (who are underrepresented in Bettany's book, IMHO, getting only about eight pages total) (Iroquois, perhaps? certainly eastern) had a legend of an Indian who survived a great flood on a simple raft. ..................................................................... } - There is evidence of a catastrophic flood. um, i think what you're describing here is not a global flood, but a global wash, and i suspect that the forces necessary to push water 5+ miles up and thousands of miles horizontally would certainly be enough to kill everything, animal and vegetable. it would certainly smash a little boat to toothpicks. btw, under either model, global flood or global wash, how was all the vegetable matter retained, i.e. how come we still have trees? } - seashells on mountains Underwater land was raised by plate tectonics. In many places you can see this process in action (though you need good measuring equipment). Subject: Noah's Ark - the construction problems Returning once again to the procedural difficulties involving Noah's Ark, based on the work of Robert Moore in "Creation/Evolution", issue XI, we have the assurance of Tim LaHaye and Henry Morris that Noah and his three sons could have easily constructed the ark in only 81 years (it being a good thing that the average lifespan at the time was several hundred years). According to Moore, the construction "... includes not merely the framing up a hull but: building docks, scaffolds, workshops; fitting together the incredible maze of cages and crates; gathering provisions for the coming voyage; harvesting the timber and producing all the various types of lumber from bird cage bars to the huge keelson beams -- not to mention wrestling the very heavy, clumsy planks for the ship into their exact location and fastening them. What's worse, by the time the job was finished, the earlier phases would be rotting away -- a difficulty often faced by builders of wooden ships, whose work took only four or five years." For waterproofing, we are told that God instructed Noah to coat the ark with pitch inside and out with the naturally-occurring hydrocarbon pitch, which causes a bit of a problem since, according to Whitcomb and Morris, all oil, tar and coal deposits were formed when organic matter was buried DURING the flood. In addition, the structural soundness of the ark was extremely questionable since, according to ship-building authorities, there was an upper limit of about 300 feet on the length of wooden ships, beyond which they were subject to 'hogging' or 'sagging'. Moore again, "The largest wooden ships ever built were the six-masted schooners, nine of which were launched between 1900 and 1909. These ships were so long that they required diagonal iron strapping for support; they "snaked" or visibly undulated, as they passed through the waves, they leaked so badly they had to be pumped constantly, and they were only used on short coastal hauls because they were unsafe in deep water." The longest six master, the U.S.S. Wyoming, was only 329 feet long, yet we are presented with the image of an ark well over 100 feet longer having to cope with the most severe conditions imaginable. What to leave behind ---- -- ----- ------ Given the limited room on the ark and the vast number of species of organisms, several creationists attempt to salvage the situation somewhat by leaving various families of animals to fend for themselves -- the birds who are left to fly until dry land reappears and the marine animals who must must survive the silt-choked, turbulent waters of the great Deluge until the Flood waters recede. Unfortunately, any attempt to save space on the ark this way flies rather drastically in the face of Scripture, since Genesis 7:4 states rather clearly, "For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights, and *every living substance that I have made* will I destroy from off the face of the earth." To ensure that there is no misunderstanding, Genesis 7:23 repeats the same information, "And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark." One would think that the exact wording of these passages leaves very little latitude for interpretation. The exact number of kinds ("baramin") that were taken aboard the ark depends upon which creationist is performing the calculations and when these calculations were done -- LaHaye and Morris in 1976 arrive at the figure of 50,000 "kinds", an upward revision from Whitcomb and Morris's 1961 figure of 35,000 but a far cry from the figure of 1,544 due to Dr. Arthur Jones. In spite of Scriptural contradiction, there remains a valiant attempt to determine just who can be left to fend for themselves in the Flood waters and still have a fair-to-middling chance of surviving. The first obvious candidates are the marine animals but, as Robert Moore points out, there are some immediate problems: "Although creationists seem to think that once you're wet, it's all the same, there are actually many aquatic regimes and many specialized inhabitants in each. Some fish live only in cold, clear mountain lakes; others in brackish swamps. Some depend on splashing, rocky, oxygen-rich creeks, while others, such as a freshwater dolphin, a manatee and a thirteen-foot catfish, live only in the sluggish Amazon ... "The salinity of the oceans would have been substantially affected by the flood; Whitcomb and Morris lamely address this concern by noting that some saltwater fish can survive in freshwater and vice versa and that "some individuals of each kind would be able to survive the gradual mixing of the waters and gradual change in salinities during and after the flood." It is left to the reader's imagination to ponder how "gradual" a worldwide, mountain-covering deluge would be. Subject: the issue of marine animals being left behind Three issues back, we discussed the rather drastic changes in salinity levels that would result as a consequence of a world-wide flood, but Robert Moore goes on to point out that, given the rest of the environmental hazards that would accompany the Noachian Deluge, the problem of the salinity level would be "a fish's least concern." In addition to making the water intolerably muddy (Moore calculates a ratio of 2.06:1 water-to-rock), the accompanying volcanic and seismic activity would be truly unimaginable, since, "... most of the world's volcanic activity, sea-floor spreading, mountain-building and continent-splitting was supposed to have occurred at this time as well, filling the seas with additional huge volumes of rock, ash, and noxious gases. Undersea volcanoes usually decimate all life in the surrounding area, and their extent had to be global during this terrible year. The earth's pre-diluvian surface would thus have been scoured clean, and forests, multi-ton boulders and the debris of civilization hurtled about like missiles. Finally, this tremendous explosion of energy would have transformed the seas into a boiling cauldron in which no life could possibly survive." Moore calculates that the temperature of the oceans would have been increased by at least 2700 C, "Yet amidst all of this, creationist icthyologists aver that life went on as usual, with a few minor adjustments to the "gradual" changes. The salmon swam to their (long-vanished) riparian breeding grounds that fall as they always had; sea anemones clung to their rocky perches, which were on the beach one month and the abyssal plain the next; blue whales continued to strain for krill even though their baleen plates were choked with mud; corals, which grow in clear, shallow water, continued to grow anyway; hapless bottom dwellers, their lives carefully adjusted to certain conditions of pressure and temperature, suddenly saw the former increase by more than 5000 pounds per square inch and the latter fluctuate in who knows what directions." Given the above, it seems fairly clear that there is no question of leaving any species to fend for themselves, which brings us to yet another creationist technique for conserving on valuable space -- bringing along only young specimens or, in extreme cases, eggs. However, Moore quotes Wildred T. Neill ("The Geography of Life"), as stating that "the mortality rate is usually very high among seedling plants and young animals; but once the critical juvenile stage is passed, the organism has a good chance of reaching old age." Moore follows this up with, "Furthermore, the young of many species cannot survive without parental care and feeding ... and even if they can, the lack of a normal social environment often results in severe behavioral disturbances... As for the dinosaur eggs, how did Noah know whether one would yield a female, the other a male -- or even that both were fertile? And since no eggs require a year's gestation, he soon would have had a hoard of fragile hatchlings on his hands." The Noah's Ark Myths "Do you seriously suppose that we are unable to prove our point, when even to this day the remains of Noah's Ark are shown in the country of the Kurds?" [Bishop Epiphanius of Salamis (315 to 403 CE)] Scholars have known that there are two interwoven creation myths in Genesis for over 200 years [1]. Current scholarship places the number of authors for Genesis at no less than four (i.e. Moses is entirely legendary). The older creation myth is generally referred to as the "J" (for Jehovah or Yahveh) document while the younger myth is known as the "P" (for Priestly) document. The "P" document is characterized by its impersonality, heavy usage of statistics (numbers) and genealogies, and reference to their chief diety as "Yahveh Elohim". The more primative "J" document refers to their chief diety as simply "Yahveh". Note that Elohim is really the plural form (gods). This is entirely logical since the entire creation myth was actually "borrowed" (a euphemism for stolen) from the Babylonians who in turn "borrowed" their version from the Sumerians. Virtually all monotheistic religions evolved from earlier polytheistic religions. [2,3,4] In the "J" document, god shapes man out of clay, while in the "P" document god creates man with just his spoken word. In the earlier references to man, the Hebrew word "adam" is used. This is translated as "mankind" (i.e. generic man); the Hebrew name for "a man" is "ish". Adam as a proper name does not appear until Genesis 5:1 (the Jerusalem Bible). The dozens of contradictions that appear in Genesis are due to the different authors and the haphazard way that the various versions were combined into one book (c.f. animals by "twos" in one place and by "sevens" in another). The Babylonian flood story has been known to Western scholars for several centuries through Greek fragments of the records of the Babylonian historian Berosus (nineteenth century discoveries have allowed a complete recovery). Between 1848 and 1876 Austen Henry Layard (British Museum archaeologist) discovered several thousand tablets in excavations at Nineveh of the library of the Assyrian king Ashurbanipal (668 to 626 BCE). Although many of the cuneiform tablets were destroyed by flames, water, and ransacking hoodlums, laboriously painstaking effort resulted in the reconstruction of the famous Gilgamesh epic in twelve cantos. The eleventh tablet contains the Babylonian version of the universal deluge. The twelve cantos seem to represent the twelve signs of the zodiac. [5,6] On December 3, 1872 George Smith (British Museum archaeologist) presented this quite important discovery to the Society of Biblical Archaeology. In 1876, he published "The Chaldean Account of Genesis" which showed the close relationship with the opening chapter of Genesis. The Mesopotamian creation myth was in use in the New Year ritual at the shrine of Marduk in Babylon as early as the time of Hammurabi (1723 to 1686 BCE). [ Another comprehensive explanation of the origin of much of the Old Testament is "Bible Myths", by T. W. Doane, in which the author demonstrates the similarities between the OT and myths from older, surrounding cultures, particularly Chaldean, Babylonian, Etruscan and Mesopotamian. - Robert P. J. Day ] The Turkish Government excavated a tablet at Abu-Habbah (ancient city of Sippar) which contains a version of the flood story complete with the great deluge and a large ship (built by Atrakhasis) by which people are to be saved. The tablet was dated the twenty-eighth day of the eleventh Babylonian month in the eleventh year of the king Ammizaduga (about 1966 BCE). Professor H.V. Hilprecht (University of Pennsylvania) discovered a tablet fragment in the excavations at Nippur that is no more recent than 2100 BCE. In this tablet, Ea (a god) tells Atrakhasis (alias Ut-napishtim) to build a great ship to save his family and the beasts of the field and the birds of heaven since he will cause a deluge which will kill all life on earth. The Babylonian creation myth is about 1,200 years older than the Hebrew version and the Sumerian (pre 3,000 BCE) creation myth predates the Babylonian version by over one thousand years. The obvious civilization sequence, according to Biblical scholars, is from the Sumerians down to the Babylonians and then down to the Hebrews. [6] Note that according to Greek mythology King Ogyges reigned during a great flood. There is absolutely no credible scientific evidence supporting the existence of a world wide flood; there is evidence for several large local floods. [7] There have been more than forty different organized expeditions to search for Noah's Ark since World War II. Since 1970 at least eleven books and three movies have been made about the search for this ever elusive object. Despite their complete lack of success, "arkeologists" [8] continue to search for that large box anyway (ark means "box" or "chest"). Mount Ararat (Agri Dagi) is the most recent of no less than nine different "final" resting places for the ark (and the least likely of all). [9,10] The arkeologists' basic idea seems to be that if Noah's Ark is found then evolution will somehow be proved totally wrong. They generally ignore a number of rather important issues (i.e. where all that water came from and where it went after the flood). In "Genesis vs. Geology", Stephen Gould examines the plausibility of the Great Flood and, in particular, the plausibility of the various proposals creationists have dreamed up to explain where the water came from and the even harder problem of where it went afterward. Gould uses this to form the basis of a general discussion of "scientific creationism" and the "scientific" creationists. [11] Some additional difficult problems include : how did Noah save all the different human diseases and parasites? How did giant earthworms and marsupials make the trip to Australia? Did Noah save any dinosaurs or plants? One of the Biblical flood myths claims that the earth was completely submerged for 365 days; long enough to kill off all of the land plant life. There are an estimated 10,000,000 to 40,000,000 plant and animal species on earth (more than 15,000 different mammals, 250,000 different beetles, and 250,000 different plants). Try calculating just how big of a box is required to hold all of the species (including their food) that survived the "flood". Imagine the few people aboard the ark dealing with several tons of animal waste each day (according to the Biblical myth the ark's only opening was a window). This is only a miniscule list of the more formidable problems that creationists must overcome. Then they get to show why virtually all of modern science is completely wrong. (Several creationists are involved in completely redefining science!) Evolution forms the very foundation of physical anthropology, cosmology, and biology, to name but a few. Evolution is also a basic component of linguistics, cultural anthropology, archaeology, and several other branches of modern science as well. [12,13] Some of the more visible arkeologists include Kelly Segraves, John D. Morris, and James Irwin. (John D. Morris is the son of Henry Morris.) Morris has written two wonderfully silly books titled "Adventure on Ararat" and "The Ark on Ararat". Although the Morris expedition claimed several "sightings" of the ark they returned with exactly zero. The Institute for Creation Research (ICR) started these expeditions in 1971 and has yet to show anything in the way of scientific evidence. The ICR claims to have received "miraculous protection" (presumably from themselves) on at least one of their expeditions. A member of the ICR has rationalized the whole failure with "the Lord will reveal the Ark at a time of His own choosing". The search for the ark has become such an embarrassment that the ICR now disavows any involvement despite the evidence of several of their own books, films, and slides! [14] Former astronaut James Irwin's expedition was funded by an evangelical religious group ("High Flight") based in Colorado Springs. Like all arkeologists, Irwin is certain that the ark is up there somewhere. On one expedition he suffered a serious fall and was forced to donate three teeth to the current monument to creationist credulity (Mount Ararat). After being released from the hospital, Irwin planned to search the mountain with a helicopter to narrow down the location. Why didn't he think of that before trying to cover the entire mountain by foot? References: [2] "The Anchor Bible" untangles the different documents in Genesis. [3] Eunice Riedel, Thomas Tracy, and Barbara Moskowitz, "The Book of The Bible", Bantam Books Inc, New York, 1981, pp. 515-518. Riedel and Moskowitz are anthropologists. [4] Isaac Asimov, "Asimov's Guide to The Bible", Avenel Books, New York, 1981. This was originally published as a two volume set. [5] Alexander Heidel, "The Gilgamesh Epic and Old Testament Parallels", University of Chicago Press, 1946. Heidel was on the research staff of the Oriental Institute (University of Chicago) until his death in 1955. [6] James George Frazer, "Folklore in the Old Testament", Hart Publishing Company Inc, New York City, 1975. "The Great Flood", pp. 46-143. This is an extraction about the Old Testament from Sir Frazer's classic twenty volume work "The Golden Bough". Frazer is one of the greatest names in anthropological literature. [9] LLoyd R. Bailey, "Where is Noah's Ark?", Abingdon, Nashville Tennessee, 1978. Bailey is an associate professor of Old Testament Studies at Duke Divinity School. [10] "The Skeptical Inquirer" Volume 3, #4, Summer 1979. A review of LLoyd Bailey's book on Noah's Ark, pp. 61-63. [11] Stephen Jay Gould, "Genesis vs. Geology", "The Atlantic", September 1982, pp. 10-17. Professor Gould teaches biology and geology at Harvard University. Gould was awarded the 1981 American Book Award for Science with "The Panda's Thumb". He is also a frequent contributor to Natural History magazine. [12] "Creation/Evolution" Issue #9, Summer 1982, "Six `Flood' Arguments Creationists Can't Answer" by Robert J. Schadewald, pp. 12-17. [13] "Creation/Evolution" Issue #11, Winter 1983, "The Impossible Voyage of Noah's Ark" by Robert A. Moore, pp. 1-43. The entire issue is about the ark. Moore lists over one hundred references. [14] "Creation/Evolution" Issue #6, Fall 1981, "A Survey of Creationist Field Research" by Henry P. Zuidema (paleontologist), pp. 1-5. Also see "Arkeology : A New Science in Support of Creation?" by Robert A. Moore, pp. 6-15. [15] "Science 81", December 1981, "The Creationists", pp. 53-60. (1) "Creationism as a Social Movement" by John Skow, (2) "Creationism as Science" by Allen Hammond and Lynn Margulis, (3) "The impact on education : an update", and (4) "What do the creationists say?". [16] Isaac Asimov, "In The Beginning... Science Faces God in The Book of Genesis", Stonesong Press, Inc, 1981, pp. 151-188. Asimov presents a very even-handed comparison of the Biblical creation myths and the modern scientific view of origins. [17] Martin Gardner, "Fads & Fallacies in the Name of Science", Dover Publications, Inc, New York, 1957. "Geology verses Genesis", pp. 123-139. This was originally published under the title "In the Name of Science". [18] Barbara C. Sproul, "Primal Myths Creating The World", Harper and Row, 1979, pp. 91-135. Sproul is Director of Religion at Hunter College of the City University of New York. [19] Free Inquiry "Science, the Bible, and Darwin". Summer 1982, Volume 2, #3. "Creationism: 500 Years of Controversy" by Gerald Larue, pp. 9-14. Professor Larue is emeritus professor of archaeology and Biblical history (University of Southern California, Los Angeles). And "Geology and the Bible" by Charles Cazeau, pp. 32-34. Charles Cazeau is professor of geology (State University of New York at Buffalo). [20] Howard M. Teeple, "The Noah's Ark Nonsense", Religion and Ethics Institute, Inc, Evanston, Illinois, 1978. Teeple is a member of the association of professional Biblical scholars, "the Society of Biblical Literature" and an ex-fundamentalist with a Ph.d in Bible. [21] Also see almost any contemporary encyclopedia under "Biblical Criticism", "Exegesis", "Higher Criticism", "Lower Criticism", "Flood, The", "Creation, The Story of", "Gilgamesh", and "Ut-Napishtim". References (addendum): [22] Gerald A. Larue, "Ancient Myth and Modern Man", Prentice-Hall, Inc, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1975. Larue provides an extensive bibliography. See [19] for author information. [23] Howard M. Teeple, "The Historical Approach to the Bible", Religion and Ethics Institute, Inc, Evanston, Illinois, 1982. Teeple provides a very extensive bibliography. See [20] for author information. [24] Robert Graves, Raphael Patai, "Hebrew Myths The Book of Genesis", Greenwich House, New York, New York, 1983. Graves is world renowned as a classicist and poet. Dr. Patai is an anthropologist, folklorist and Biblical scholar. Notes: [1] The less sophisticated creationists are usually unaware that there are two creation myths in Genesis while the more sophisticated usually insist that such claims are merely an unproven hypothesis. This is an actual example of the latter : "Perhaps the `faith-like' reliance upon the Graf-Wellhausen hypothesis of the 19th-century (re: Genesis JEPD theory) reveals either a lack of knowledge of post-WWII theological progress or an imbalanced diet of Bible literature." The same individual also insisted that the ancient Hebrews knew that the earth was spherical despite massive evidence to the contrary! (i.e. the Bible is a flat-earth book from cover to cover.) [7] When I asked a local member of the American Scientific Affiliation (ASA - a creationist organization) for the evidence supporting a global flood he stated "the fact that all early civilizations had flood stories proves the universal deluge recorded in the Bible historically accurate." This typifies creationist thinking. Firstly, not all ancient people had flood stories; only those located in regions where floods naturally occur. Secondly, several thousand fables do not somehow add up to a single fact. [8] This whimsical name was invented by skeptics. }misc concerning the flood Concerning the Flood, the Biblical tale is a copy of an old Mesopotamian tale; the Tigris and Euphrates rivers sometimes flood, and a flood can seem like one of "all the world" to someone living in nearly level terrain. In the tale of Noah's Ark, we do not learn why Noah did not take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to get rid of all the "unclean" animals once and for all. In early modern times, it was commonly thought that fossils were the remains of animals and plants buried in the Flood; the Free Thinker Voltaire felt compelled to discredit this seeming evidence for Noah's Flood -- he suggested that fossils were fakes or were dropped by pilgrims. But closer examination of fossils suggested too-neat layering for an all-at-once flood, and Flood advocates retreated to some of the most recent sediments (see Stephen Jay Gould's essay "The Freezing of Noah" in _The Flamingo's Smile_). In the early nineteenth century, even that seeming evidence was shown to be the work of glaciers (floods of solid water), and only in the more northern parts of the globe. Gould even reproduces the "recantation" of one of the last reputable "Flood Geologists", concerning this subject. } hydraulic sorting Well, let's see. Let's look at the usual creationist Flood theory, i.e. that the ordering of fossils is determined by hydraulic sorting (some shapes will settle faster than others), differential mobility (some life forms could flee the Flood longer than others), and differential habitat (some animals live at higher elevations than others). Let's pick a nice case that looks at one of these mechanisms and controls for the other two. There are certain plants that often grow at sea level, near the shore. There are many mollusks that only grow in shallow water near the shore, and attach themselves to rocks. No differential mobility, no sorting since both types of organism stay put. Unfortunately, the particular class of plants involved (I'll have to check my notebook at home for the exact reference -- I think it's the angiosperms) doesn't show up in the fossil record until mammals appear and is never found in lower layers with mollusks that should have lived nearby. } timing problems let's look at the Biblical dates. I Kings 6:1 says that 480 years passed from the start of the Exodus to the start of construction on the first temple by Solomon. Gal 3:17 says that 430 years passed from the cevenant with Abraham to the delivery of the Law to Moses. The chapters of Genesis after the Flood accound give the periods in years that passed between the births of various individuals from Noah to Abraham, giving a period of 390 years from the Flood to the covenant with Abraham. Thus, according to the Bible, the Flood took place 1300 years before Solomon began construction of the first temple. a) This is a clear, direct, falsifiable claim. These are clear, unambiguous statements that a period of X years elapsed between two events. b) The event itself (a global Flood that wiped out all but 8 humans) would be pretty hard to miss or gloss over. c) Because there were any number of literate cultures in the near East, who recorded dynastic lists, raised monuments giving dates and length of reigns, and sent ambassadors to each others' courts, we can pretty reliably construct chronologies for near Easter history, particularly for Egypt, and without reference to (but supported by) dating methods such as carbon-14 with corrections from tree-ring sequences. d) The upshot of which is that the building of the first temple can be dated to 950 B.C. +- some small delta, placing the Flood around 2250 B.C. Unfortunately, the Egytians (among others) have written records dating well back before 2250 B.C. (the Great Pyramid, for example dates to the 26th century B.C., 300 years before the Biblical date for the Flood). No sign in Egyptian inscriptions of this global flood around 2250 B.C. e) Therefore, either we have to reject the historicity of the Flood account; accept the historicity of the Flood account, but explain away the clear Biblical dating of the event; or accept the Biblical account and chronology, and reject the massive amount of written and archaological evidence estab- lishing the chronology of history in the near East. } folded rocks show that it was done when they were soft }He next stated that when you hit something that's hard, it breaks or }shatters. These folds are smooth, so it must be that the rock (he }showed and mentioned sandstone) was still forming from mud, and was }still soft. This means that the layers formed very rapidly, to still }be soft (down at the bottom layer) when the whole shebang got }faulted. } }His (inevitable) conclusion: it all formed during Noah's flood. >Rebuttal: nothing "hit" that rock. Conventional geology understands >the strength and brittleness of these things: they can and have been >measured in labs. Note, I'm not saying that rocks of a given type >are identical. The point is that science has dealt with all this >quantitatively. The rocks got folded by compression, not by sudden >impact: and in fact some rocks do shatter. I've seen examples - for >instance, hard black fragments embedded in a softer gray rock. The >gray rock had flowed while the black shattered. Folding can happen in a lot less than geological time. If you go to the Roman dig at the Fort at Housesteads, in Northumbria, you can see the remains of Roman barracks which now lie in definite waves, because of the movement of the earth beneath them. The mortar between the stones is still intact.


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