AIG: How Noah Built the Ark

The creation scientists at Answers in Genesis (AIG) — the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — have embarrassed your Curmudgeon.

Why are we embarrassed? They have revealed a shocking lapse in our thinking. When we wrote about the Top Ten Reasons Noah’s Flood is Mythology, which has received over 13,000 pageviews, it never occurred to us to ask: How did one man and his children, living in Mesopotamia sometime between the Sumerian and Babylonian empires, build such a contraption?

AIG has just posted How Could Noah Build Something So Large?, which answers the question we failed to ask. Their article has no author’s byline. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:

Imagine that you had never studied ancient monuments and had never heard of Stonehenge in England. How would you respond to someone who told you that long before the advent of modern machinery, ancient people moved 30-foot-tall, 25-ton stones a distance of 20 miles and arranged them in precise alignment with the sun on the summer solstice?

We would respond that it obviously required a lot of people, a lot of animals, a lot of rope, a lot of time, and a lot of trial-and-error. Then they ask the same question about the Great Pyramid, after which they say:

If these incredible structures weren’t around anymore and we only had some historical records of them, very few people would believe that they had ever been built because we have been taught to believe that early people were incapable of such feats. So how could Noah build an enormous Ark?

That’s not a very good analogy. According to the bible, Noah seems to have worked alone, with only his sons. There’s no mention of anyone else. In Genesis 6 (King James version, of course), we’re told:

13 And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.

14 Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch.

15 And this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty cubits.

16 A window shalt thou make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt thou finish it above; and the door of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof; with lower, second, and third stories shalt thou make it.

[…]

22 Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.

That’s all we’re told — except in Genesis 7 it says: “Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth.” But AIG somehow knows more. They say:

He had some advantages over the builders of Stonehenge and the Great Pyramid. Since people in his day had such long lifespans, think of the amount of knowledge and skills they could acquire.

Yeah, they probably had the internet. Let’s read on:

Also, Noah built the Ark during what was likely the technological peak of the pre-Flood world, and although we do not know the extent of their innovations, we do know they worked with iron and other metals (Genesis 4:22).

According to creationists, the Flood occurred about 4,000 years ago, and we know the Iron Age began around 1,200 BC, perhaps a bit earlier. We won’t quibble. Maybe Noah lived at the dawn of the Iron Age. But we have no information about what AIG says was “the technological peak of the pre-Flood world.” AIG continues:

The Flood wiped out Noah’s world, and, other than the knowledge and advancements Noah’s family brought on the Ark, society endured a technological “reset.”

What does that mean? All the imaginary technological wonders in Noah’s time have been lost? What were they — besides the spear and the loincloth? And more to the point: how can AIG assume that such technology existed? The bible doesn’t mention any of it. But Hambo’s creation scientists must know what they’re talking about. They wouldn’t just make stuff up.

There’s only one more paragraph to the AIG article:

Yet within a few centuries and hampered by another near-technological “reset” with the language confusion at Babel, ancient people produced incredible structures that still amaze us today, such as the wonders of the Great Pyramid and Stonehenge.

So there you are. Within a few short centuries, Noah and his immediate family were sufficiently prolific that they produced enough people to not only build the Pyramids, but also Stonehenge. And if they could do all that, why not the Ark? After all, they had sophisticated technology from the pre-Flood world. Sounds reasonable to us.

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42 responses to “AIG: How Noah Built the Ark

  1. Wait… the only survivors where the people smart enough and technologically advanced enough to build an ark that we still can’t reproduce today and not a single one of them thought it might be a good idea to share that knowledge with their children?!?!?!

  2. michaelfugate

    I keep wondering why if humans and especially God’s chosen people were so dam_ed troublesome, he didn’t wipe them out completely and start over with a new model? Nothing he ever did worked, even Jesus was iffy at best.

  3. Well, OgreMkV, if you read the story they apparently spent a good deal of the post-Deluge in a drunken state.

  4. AIG wrote about this a couple of years ago: How Many People Built the Ark? They claim that because the bible is silent, he could have more people working on the project. And he could have “had access to sophisticated mechanisms and technology that people have not considered.”

  5. michaelfugate

    You wonder what lies told them during the construction – he knew that the flood was coming, they were getting on the boat and would drown as a consequence….

  6. Our Curmudgeon reports Ham’s claim that Noah might have

    “had access to sophisticated mechanisms and technology that people have not considered.”

    Jeepers, for once Ham is right!

    I honestly had not considered that Noah might have had access to a humongous 3-D printer that could have produced a plastic Ark in a jiffy!

  7. Among the many other things that prove that story is a myth, perhaps pointed out by others here, is the fact that even with considerable steel reinforcement, no recent wooden ships have been close to the size of Noah’s alleged ship. And the largest of the recent ones required high capacity pumps because of leaks that occur as wooden ships work in the sea. Even on a dead flat calm Noah and the boys would have had do spend all their time pumping the bilges and have no time to feed the beasts or clean up after them. That intelligent design guy sure wasn’t a marine architect!

  8. I am not a rancher, but ISTM that the earliest audience to the Flood account would realize that it is impossible to have pairs of cattle, a bull and his mate.

  9. If these incredible structures weren’t around anymore and we only had some historical records of them, very few people would believe that they had ever been built because we have been taught to believe that early people were incapable of such feats.

    I don’t accept the bible as a reliable source of historical information, especially in this case. Oh, and if Noah lived for 600 years, then his whole family must have likewise lived for 600 years, but the bible says nothing in that regards.

  10. Dave Luckett

    WTF?

    By their dating, the Flood is supposed to have happened around 2500 BCE. That’s in the Bronze Age. Some meteoric iron might have been in use, but no iron smelting from ore can be traced back further than 1400 BCE, and that was in Anatolia.

    But “we do know they worked with iron and other metals (Genesis 4:22)”.

    They know no such thing. They read a text written by a scribe sometime around the fifth century BCE, who was recording a vague story about the ancestors, passed by word of mouth.

    How do they account for the large workings in Sinai, where the copper for the tools to build the pyramids was mined? We actually have the records for food supplies to a work force that numbered in the thousands. These can be securely dated to 2500 BCE – the very time when the Flood was supposed to cover the Earth and leave a population of eight? Why would Pharaoh mine copper on that scale if he had iron available? And how come the mines show no evidence for catastrophic flooding?

    Oh, that’s right. The whole of the dynastic history of Egypt, which conventionally begins with the uniting of the two kingdoms, upper and lower, in 3200 BCE, has to be compressed by more than a millenium, and the evidence be damned. Literally.

    Oh, and for Egypt, Mesopotamia, the Hittite Kingdom, and the civilizations of Crete, Mycenae, the Indus, China, and South-east Asia to arise by 2000 BCE, forget about humans breeding like rabbits. They’d need to breed like codfish.

    These people have elevated ignorance to an art form, and made a religion of denial.

  11. In debating creationists I have seen the flood dated anywhere from about 4,350 years ago to maybe 10,000 years ago, to the KT boundary at around 66 million years ago, and even to the PT boundary around 252 million years ago.

    If you show them that one date is incorrect they shift to another, and another and still another. Rinse and repeat.

    The problem is they are not willing to accept evidence, but rather follow belief. They believe there was this magical flood, and don’t much care when it was or how much evidence there is against all of their claims. They believes it and that settles it.

    Who needs evidence when you know how it all happened. Creation “science” at work, eh boys and girls?

  12. Charles Deetz ;)

    Creationists and facts like Luckett just poured down on them are like:

  13. According to the bible, Noah seems to have worked alone, with only his sons. There’s no mention of anyone else.

    It always grieves me when I find myself in the rare predicament of having to appear to defend even a tiny portion of Ken Ham’s hermeneutics—but I’ll bite my lip and proceed.

    There’s no mention of anyone else. I can’t think of any cultures which would mention others. And in the likely social structures of Noah’s day–especially if ancient sources are accurate in descriptions of Noah and his society–Noah probably had a large number of servants anyway and he had the wealth to hire more. (The question of whether or not such a man named Noah actually lived doesn’t change the other factors that come into play when reading and interpreting ancient texts. Even parables tend to mirror a lot of mundane aspects of the storyteller’s culture.)

    Long ago when Detroit was enjoying the prosperity of the Don Draper era, I joined a faculty colleague and our families in visiting the Henry Ford Museum. As we walked toward the enormous, sprawling museum, his four-year son asked many questions and my friend did his best to answer them. He pulled a brochure out of his pocket and read “Henry Ford built the museum in 1929.” His young son exclaimed, “Wow! Henry Ford built so many cars but still had enough time to build a museum too!” Everyone had a good chuckle at the naivete of youth—and someone predictably added: “Not only that but Ford built the museum working nights in a single year!”

    Obviously, the fact that one word can have several similar meanings is soon absorbed by a young mind as he observes its use in multiple contexts. For a typical four-year old, “to build” is a verb describing the process of an individual using tools to assemble or erect something. But with more experience with the language, he/she will realize that a person can also build something by paying others to do so. Therefore, nobody assumes that “Donald Trump built a large tower in New York” with his own hands. Many languages, ancient and modern, share this flexibility with at least some verbs of making/building/doing.

    How do we know whether “to build” in English means the subject of the verb did the work or hired out the work? We make assumptions from context which presume that projects large in scope will involve hiring workers to do the nitty-gritty building. Seeing the raw dimensions of the ark—even if the story is just a parable—would have led the ancients to assume Noah hired a lot of help, just as the dimensions of the Trump Towers makes it unlikely that the Donald got his hands dirty on the catwalks.

    Nevertheless, I’ve seen this happen with a lot of students: Distinctions made easily when reading a newspaper story about Donald Trump building a casino or office building somehow don’t engage when reading an ancient text. I suppose it is due to a tendency to assume an ancient context is too foreign to make what otherwise would be a simple and logical leap. In any case, this is a context where there is no reason to disallow a hired workforce under Noah when we wouldn’t worry about a newspaper story which failed to mention who Trump hired to build his tower.

    By the way: Please, let’s not misunderstand the meaning of the word “literally” in the “Fundamentalists always interpret literally.” and pretend that it means that one must interpret everything in the narrowest way. Literal and literally is probably the most abused term in all of hermeneutics. I’d be happy to get rid of it completely.

  14. I am not a rancher, but ISTM that the earliest audience to the Flood account would realize that it is impossible to have pairs of cattle, a bull and his mate.

    And that is among the many reasons many scholars assume the Noah’s Flood pericope is a type of parable—even if it is based upon an actual historical Noah (some traditions call him a ruler of some sort) and his family’s survival of the biggest flood they had ever seen.

    Even though Young Earth Creationists insist on a global flood, the Hebrew text itself only speaks of a flood of Noah’s ERETZ/land/nation/region. And “every kind of animal” can be an idiom meaning “all kinds of animals” or “every sort of animal”. Even in English, as well as in Hebrew, “all/every” doesn’t always mean 100% of something. As with Genesis 1, there’s a lot of clues pointing to symbolism and a purpose other than a careful retelling of an historical event. And some cultures would take a real historical event and “embellish” it considerably to convey various themes.

    If that “embellished stories” sounds strange, what does Hollywood do with movies based on actual events? What about the Broadway Musical 1776? Anyone who has studied the history of the convention which produced the Declaration of Independence noticed that a LOT of embellishment, both dramatic and comic, beefed up what could have been a dull story. Nevertheless, students often balk when seeing something in an ancient culture which really isn’t all that different from their own culture. Perhaps it involves the bias which presumes that the ancients were much less sophisticated than moderns.)

  15. Prof T: Your explanations of how incongruities in the Bible can be interpreted to be compatible with common sense are always entertaining, but you rather miss the point. I am quite sure that most people who contribute to this forum are well aware that the Bible is unlikely to be literally true. The point is not that fundies cannot construct ad hoc excuses, but rather that the process of them doing so is revealing. Pushed far enough through a succession of speculations, they can end up saying things that even they recognise as nonsense. I once got an obviously intelligent JW to explain that the reason that Jesus could see all of the nations of the world from his mountain top was not that the Bible authors thought that the world was flat, but that Jesus had television. At that point, she clearly recognised that she was just being silly. The pair left shortly afterwards.

  16. Professor Tertius notes

    ‘Literal’ and ‘literally’ is probably the most abused term in all of hermeneutics. I’d be happy to get rid of it completely.

    I would be even happier if one could get rid of hermeneutics completely. It would definitely be somewhere in my list of the top 5 of pseudo-intellectual pursuits which has retarded the advance of knowledge and helped elevate sophistry over reason and dogma over knowledge. But your mileage may vary🙂

  17. I think it decidedly odd that durung the time Noah was building his ark that of all the millions of naughty sinners all around not a single person thought to wonder: ”Wait a moment, maybe this bloke is on to something? Perhaps I should get a few of my mates and also make a boat?”

  18. “sometime between the Sumerian and Babylonian empires”
    Ah, Biblical literacy and timelines ….

    http://creation.com/the-date-of-noahs-flood

    The Flood is supposed tha have happened in 2300 BCE.
    The Babylonian Empire a bit later:

    http://www.ancient.eu/timeline/babylon/

    So Noah couldn’t have known it.
    The interesting bit is the Sumerian Empire though.

    http://www.ancient.eu/timeline/sumer/

    Apparently it survived the Flood.
    So this (from the creacrap link) “The placing of a catastrophic global flood in the year 2304 BC means that all civilizations discovered by archaeology must fit into the last 4,285 years. The significance of this fact will be pursued in later articles.” is very telling.

  19. “How would you respond ….”
    I would do an internet search on “how was Stonehenge build” and within a few seconds I would have found

    http://www.history.com/news/solving-the-riddle-of-stonehenges-construction

    “very few people would believe that they had ever been built because we have been taught to believe that early people were incapable of such feats.”
    BWAHAHAHAHA! Trust creacrappers to get it exactly backwards. No, the simple fact that they are there and were build by humans leads us to the simply conclusion that they were capable indeed. Give me archeological evidence of a big boat like Noah’s Ark say 4000 years ago and I’ll accept it too.

  20. Mega makes a wish: “I would be even happier if one could get rid of hermeneutics completely.”
    Actually hermeneutics is a pretty good method on condition that you accept its limits. But that applies to all methods.

    http://www.livius.org/articles/theory/hermeneutics/

  21. Megalonyx:
    “I would be even happier if one could get rid of hermeneutics completely.”

    Amen. And take its co-conspirator in obfuscation, “exegesis”, along with it. They are both jargon words, known and used only by those who make their living interpreting scripture.

    Being an educator by profession and a technical writer by degree, I place a high value on writing that communicates to the widest audience, not the narrowest. Although it uses more letters, the phrase “scriptural interpretation” works adequately in place of “hermeneutics” or “exegesis”, and is much more widely understood.

    That being said, I have to thank Professor Tertius for adding two new words to my vocabulary. (Not that I can think of any situation in which I would use either one, but at least I now know their meaning. Who knows? they be in a crossword someday.)

  22. Sumerian
    Just a little bit which I found interesting. The 19th archeologists who came across the Sumerians were surprised as there was no previous indication of such a civilization. Nothing in the Bible, in particular. But also nothing in Classical literature. As the cuneiform was being interpreted, there were texts which turned out to be from a totally different language (not Semitic, not Indo-European) from this lost culture.

  23. B&SF: Professor Tertius:
    “Even though Young Earth Creationists insist on a global flood, the Hebrew text itself only speaks of a flood of Noah’s ERETZ/land/nation/region.”

    And here is where I must thank the expert in hermeneutics. Why creationists can’t see this is beyond me. Of course the Flood would refer only to Noah’s region — the ancients had no knowledge of “globe” or “global”.

    Prof. T, you have mentioned and explained the multiple meanings of “eretz” in earlier comments, and it just makes so much sense. Too bad the KJV uses the broadest meaning of eretz, the whole earth.

  24. Reminds me of George R.R. Martin’s stock comment about the veracity of the Game of Thrones television show compared to the book: How many children did Scarlett O’Hara have? The answer is 3 in the book, 1 in the movie, and 0 in real life because Scarlett, like Noah, is a fictional character.
    The details aren’t there because it didn’t really happen.

  25. exegesis
    And there is another interesting word eisegesis.

  26. mnbo provided an excellent link where this nugget appears:
    Hermeneutics is, to quote the founder of the method, Friedrich Schleiermacher (1768-1834), “the art of understanding each other’s words”. However, it is not just a method to understand the spoken or written word, but also a way to explain historical events.

    As long as there are ancient texts—as well as not-so-ancient ones—there will be hermeneutics. And exegesis. And eisegesis.

    Yet, I suppose the superior minds of the world could stage protests at universities throughout the planet and demand that the methods and tools which allow the spoken and written word to be more accurately understood be terminated immediately. No doubt the extermination of such skills—and the academic departments which dare deal with them—would be a wonderful step forward for all mankind.

    Oh, and while various departments of the Colleges of Arts & Science are being properly purged of all that “inappropriate” hermeneutics and exegesis, don’t forget the professors of Constitutional Law at the various Schools of Law. After all, the last thing our society needs is people who understand words. What good could they possibly be?

    In fact, perhaps some sort of “commission” could be appointed which would look for and root out all sorts of knowledge, skills, and arts which surely need be eliminated. Just think about what could be gained from such a process!

    I’m just surprised that nobody ever thought of it before.

  27. retiredsciguy wrote:

    Too bad the KJV uses the broadest meaning of eretz, the whole earth.

    What’s very interesting about that is that once the KJV translators got beyond Genesis 9 or so (I’ve not researched this in many years), they usually translated ERETZ as “land”, “country”, “nation”, and even “wilderness”. Yet, even when ERETZ was translated as “earth” in those early chapters, it was not at all “wrong”, per see. Not in 1611. At that time the word “earth” was much less likely to be assumed to mean “planet earth”. It was simply the opposite of sky, much like the ancient Hebrews understood it.

    Also, even in 1611, tradition was a powerful force and the KJV translators often followed the lead of prior translations. Once a particular idea is entrenched in the minds of readers, it is difficult to change it. And once “planet earth” got into a Hebrew lexicon under ERETZ, it is even more entrenched. Yet, it is very questionable that “planet earth” was a concept with any meaning to the ancient Hebrews. Their cosmology was much the same as that of other cultures of the Ancient Near East.

    Indeed, this is a good example for why translations need updated on a regular basis. Languages change over time and the events of the space race made “planet earth” even more primary to the meaning of “earth” in modern English.

  28. Professor Tertius says: “Also, even in 1611, tradition was a powerful force and the KJV translators often followed the lead of prior translations.”

    When I was in school — public school — my English teacher was talking about accuracy of the King James version. She told us that the task of translation was given to 400 scholars, each of whom worked separately. When they were all done, their results were compared. And they were all identical! How can you explain that, huh? Huh?

  29. And you believed her?

  30. Professor Tertius satirically proposes

    I suppose the superior minds of the world could stage protests at universities throughout the planet and demand that the methods and tools which allow the spoken and written word to be more accurately understood be terminated immediately.

    You misunderstood my little jibe. I said nothing against the genuine scholarship of what used to be known as philology, now subsumed under various branches of linguistics.

    Granted, ‘hermeneutics’ has an older pedigree–but one, arguably, rather besmirched by its roots in medieval scholasticism, which I would suppose is why the term has fallen out of favour, at least outside of seminaries and theological colleges.

    (And full disclosure: my own degree is in Linguistics (with thesis in diachronic study of Attic Greek🙂 )

  31. When they were all done, their results were comp

    I’ve long wondered if anybody else had heard that KJV story! Thanks for sharing that.

    It’s a great story because a folklore scholar would be fascinated by its origins. You see, the Greek Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament, completed perhaps around the 3rd century BC) is called the Septuagint because it means, obviously, seventy. Legend has it that 70 translators worked in separate cells and miraculously chose the very same words—thereby proving its divine inspiration. So I’ve always found it amazing that the story would get updated by about 1800 years and applied to the 1611 KJV.

    It’s also amazing that the 70 translators ballooned to 400! The KJV translators were far fewer in number, well below both figures.

    I suppose such miracles are like fish stories: they get bigger and bigger over time.

  32. I have often criticized the ID/creationists for “hermeneutics,” exegesis,” “etymology,” and generalized word-gaming. We have seen specific examples of the YEC type over at Panda’s Thumb for years.

    The problem with these groups is not so much that these techniques are useless for clarifying texts across time and cultures; it is rather because they are used by sectarians to bend and break concepts to fit a preconceived sectarian dogma. It is apologetics attempting look like a rational process leading to a logical conclusion that therefore must be undeniably true.

    ID/creationists do this with science as well; they bend and break well-understood concepts so that the resulting “science” supports sectarian dogma; and this means that the “science” no longer applies to reality. The attempt to make “faith” and sectarian dogma look rational and scientific is an attempt to give sectarianism the imprimatur of science; thereby making the dogma “superior” in its persuasiveness to all other dogmas.

    The ultimate goal is to get sectarian dogma codified into law and enforced by the courts. If we forget the socio/political motivations of sectarians, we miss the point.

  33. How do King James only believers account for the fact that the KJV has been need of revision. Try to find exact copy of the 1611 text. I am wary of anyone who claims that they are presenting the KJV short of a photocopy. To be blunt about it, I don’t trust Bible publishers.

  34. Here is a sectarian reason given for various “translations.”

    Here is what has been the result over the years.

    Many of these translations are self-serving justifications of particular sectarian beliefs.

  35. Mike Elzinga provides a useful link to

    a sectarian reason given for various “translations.”

    The article makes some good points on the general challenges of any translation.

    There have also been, over the centuries, a wide range of translations of Homer, varying from one another for similar reasons offered in the article. I would not direct a modern English-speaking reader to Chapman’s or Pope’s translations, interesting and worthy though they are (particularly to students of English literature).

    The scholarly skills we can bring to bear on translating and understanding Homer are precisely the same we can deploy on the Bible, no more and no less. My little quibble with the term (and spurious ‘practise’) of ‘hermeneutics’ is the presumption that by somehow uncovering the ‘true’ meaning of an ancient text one thereby also says something significant about the ‘real’ world–that is, our world, and not simply the perception of an imaginative world embodied in that ancient text. That is, we read and study the magnificent Homeric epics for the beauty of the poetry, the insight into human psychology, the drama of the conflict, &c., but not in order to better understand how the Olympian Gods interact with our world! Yet I often suspect soi disant hermeneuticists of claiming that basic philological analysis of Biblical texts somehow yields knowledge, not just about the ancient text, but about the ‘real’ world and the ‘real’ nature of supernatural fairy tales.

    To illustrate closer to home: consider the ‘sacred text’ of the LDS Church, the Book of Mormon. By every application of standard linguistic and historical analysis, it is manifestly a 19th century pastiche, and it is astounding anyone can believe the provenance claimed for it by the founders of the cult. Linguists and Historians have no trouble making this clear–but where are the Biblical ‘hermeneuticists’ pointing out this simple fact?

  36. What about those who study the Documentary Hypothesis and its later variants about the provenance of the Pentateuch?

  37. Yet I often suspect soi disant hermeneuticists of claiming that basic philological analysis of Biblical texts somehow yields knowledge, not just about the ancient text, but about the ‘real’ world and the ‘real’ nature of supernatural fairy tales.

    This is precisely what many of the “biblical scholars” of modern fundamentalism attempt to do. If they were to do it honestly, rather than try to bend the translation into an apologetic argument for a particular sectarian view, they might learn something about the way ancient writers thought about their world compared to what we know of our world as a result of centuries of historical experience. But they reject science and the Enlightenment; instead bending and breaking even those powerful ideas to support dogma.

    One of my favorite examples of a good translation of a historical author that actually allows one to see the similarities and differences between ancient and modern thought is Ronald Latham’s translation of Lucretius’s On the Nature of the Universe. Many of the words that Latham uses did not exist around 100 BCE, but by using familiar modern words within the context of Lucretius’s writings, one can appreciate not only the surprisingly “modern” insights of the Epicureans, but also the really stark differences in their heroic but wrong attempts to understand all of nature.

    One can also gather such insights from good translations of other literature, including the books that make up the Christian bible; but the objective should never be to bend these translations into nuances that are then used to rationalize some rather recent, idiosyncratic moral system.

  38. Third Prof explains: “why translations need updated on a regular basis”
    Which is why I always compare the KJV with the Staten Vertaling (early 17th Century) and the Nieuwe Willibrord Vertaling (about 40 years old).

    Not only that link is excellent, the entire site is. Plus the old version. Plus his blogs. Anyone interested in Antiquity should know his work.
    Let me give you an excellent reason to learn to read Dutch:

    http://www.worldcat.org/title/israel-verdeeld-hoe-uit-een-klein-koninkrijk-twee-wereldreligies-ontstonden/oclc/884588760

    Mike Elzinga understands the issue: “ID/creationists do this with science as well”
    and not even Mega is going to propose to get rid of science just because creacrappers abuse the word.

  39. I am not a rancher, but ISTM that the earliest audience to the Flood account would realize that it is impossible to have pairs of cattle, a bull and his mate.

    And that is among the many reasons many scholars assume the Noah’s Flood pericope is a type of parable—even if it is based upon an actual historical Noah (some traditions call him a ruler of some sort) and his family’s survival of the biggest flood they had ever seen.

    It’s worth noting that “Noah,” or whatever his name really was if he actually existed, would most likely have been living in what is now known as the Tigris-Euphrates river valley.

    Such places are known to undergo catastrophic flooding every few thousand years or so. there are indications of such flooding in the Mississippi, Indus, Mekong and elsewhere, and each of these regions has its own flood myths. Unfortunately for creationists, the times don’t match–not even close, in some cases. That would force the C’s to insist that all those heathen chronologies are wrong and only the one they derive from Genesis is right.

    However, per Coyote, they can’t even agree among themselves about the literal meaning of the Bible:

    In debating creationists I have seen the flood dated anywhere from about 4,350 years ago to maybe 10,000 years ago, to the KT boundary at around 66 million years ago, and even to the PT boundary around 252 million years ago.

    If you show them that one date is incorrect they shift to another, and another and still another. Rinse and repeat.

    The sort of creationists who insist the world, and indeed the universe, is only 6,000 years old must surely turn purple at the heresy that the Flood happened a quarter of a billion years ago. Incidentally, that would put Noah, his family and all the people who mocked him as he built the Ark, before the Flood and the dinosaurs after it–unless the latter are even older than paleontologists say rather than far more recent. The party never stops in Nonsense Land.

  40. I’ve never seen it mentioned that the Sanskrit for “ship” is nauh.

  41. And that we even hear its faint echo in “nautilus” and “navigation”, descending from the Greek for sailor. Indo-European roots go very deep.

  42. What I find incredible is that some people believe in this nonsense! I can only attribute such behavior to intellectual laziness and emotional timidity.