Creationist Wisdom #721: Flood & Old Earth

Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Star Press of Muncie, Indiana — the home town of Ball State University. The title is Argument in favor of great flood. The newspaper has a comments feature.

Because the writer isn’t a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name. This guy writes a lot of letters-to-the-editor — we posted about one recently: #715: God and Slavery, and that links to an earlier one — but he still doesn’t qualify for full-name treatment. His first name is Kevin. Excerpts from his new letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!

I’m not likely to visit the recently opened “Ark Encounter” exhibit in Kentucky, but that’s not because I disbelieve the historicity of Noah’s ark. On the contrary, I fully accept, as any true Christian should, the Genesis account of Noah’s ark and God’s judgment on human wickedness.

Yes, any true Christian should. But then, why won’t Kevin visit ol’ Hambo’s ark? He explains that later. First, he defends the Flood:

There is plenty of archeological evidence that a vast flood covered the whole area of early civilization.

Where might we find this archeological evidence? In Egypt, perhaps? Mesopotamia? Ethiopia? Kevin doesn’t tell us. Instead, we get this:

Furthermore, every branch of the human race has a story about a great flood from which only a few people escaped. If the flood described in Genesis did not actually occur, why did all ancient cultures after Noah’s time have a story about a great flood?

Maybe it’s because people often settled along rivers, and rivers occasionally flood? Even so, none of these ancient flood tales are synchronized, nor do any of them mention Noah — except one. We discussed all this in Top Ten Reasons Noah’s Flood is Mythology. But Kevin is a believer. He tells us:

Not surprisingly, there are slightly different versions of the flood story, but the universality of the tradition supports the Bible-based view that a great flood did occur many thousands of years ago, before mankind became spread out over the earth. It is not a myth.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! He continues:

Jesus regarded the Noahic flood as a historical fact, and that’s good enough for me.

Okay. Let’s read on:

The people who created the “Ark Encounter” exhibit are young-earth creationists. They believe that the earth is only a few thousand years old and that dinosaurs co-existed with humans.

That shouldn’t bother a Flood believer. But it does bother Kevin, which makes his letter very strange. Kevin is an old-Earth Flood believer, perhaps the first we’ve ever seen. Then he denounces the young-Earthers while simultaneously defending the bible:

Such views are absurd and contrary to scientifically established facts, but there is nothing in the Bible, properly interpreted, that undermines science.

Uh, what about the Flood? Oh, Kevin says that’s real history. Then what about the bible’s numerous statements that The Earth Is Flat, and that The Earth Does Not Move? Kevin doesn’t mention those things. Instead, he ends his letter with this:

And nothing that scientists have discovered undermines the Bible.

Now there’s a provocative statement! We’ll leave it to you, dear reader, to refute Kevin’s claim — if you can.

Copyright © 2016. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

add to del.icio.usAdd to Blinkslistadd to furlDigg itadd to ma.gnoliaStumble It!add to simpyseed the vineTailRankpost to facebook

. AddThis Social Bookmark Button . Permalink for this article

14 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #721: Flood & Old Earth

  1. The writer claims:

    And nothing that scientists have discovered undermines the Bible.

    Among the many things that scientists have discovered is physics. The worldwide flood story is physically impossible. A high school physics student can calculate the minimum energy scenario for the purported flood; and the rate of energy deposition on the Earth’s surface turns out to be 1.6 x 10^8 watts per square meter (about 40 kg of TNT going off every second over every square meter of the Earth’s surface for 40 days and nights).

    The temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere would rise to 10,570 degrees Fahrenheit and the atmospheric pressure would climb to about 860 atmospheres.

    And all this in top of the physical impossibility of building a seaworthy wooden boat of the purported size of Noah’s ark. Ken Ham hasn’t done it either.

    All other purported scenarios that attempt to overcome this embarrassment for YECs are far more energetic; but ID/creationists don’t know how to do high school level physics calculations. They just wave their hands and “philosophize.”

  2. There is plenty of archeological [sic] evidence that a vast flood covered the whole area of early civilization.
    So Kevin is saying that early civilization was located only in the Middle East? What about the Incan folks high up in Andes and other peoples all across the globe. Ah, but Kevin must only accept that the Middle East was it, period, nobody else in the world.

  3. The Euphrates and Tigris river valleys flood annually. “Swamp” arabs live in the flood plains of these rivers in elevated villages and push pole canoes. This area is thought by historians to be the likely area that gave rise to flood myths in the old testament.

  4. One of the problems with the biblical global flood is that creationists can’t specify when it occurred.

    Biblical scholars put it about 4,350 years ago but that is disproved by archaeological evidence in Egypt and most of the rest of the world.

    So, creationists put it farther back–10,000 years or so–but that doesn’t help them any. So, some put it back to the K-T boundary or the Cambrian explosion. They have to do this because they can’t fit it in elsewhere. And guess what? It doesn’t fit there either for a very simple reason–modern humans weren’t traipsing about 65 million years ago, much less 542 million years ago.

    So, creationists have to dispute all of the various dating methods that show an old earth and no flood. They ignore the fact that many different dating methods show the same results even though they are based on different assumptions and techniques.

    In other words, they pick and choose what they like and ignore what they don’t like.

    Creation “science” as usual!

  5. If the flood described in Genesis did not actually occur, why did all ancient cultures after Noah’s time have a story about a great flood?

    That one’s easy: not all of them did, and those which did didn’t always imagine a global flood. The Norse creation myth, for example, includes a flood (of blood!) but one that drowned only the “frost ogres.”

  6. Those human societies that lived in places that were subject to catastrophic local flooding had flood legends. Those that didn’t, didn’t.

    The Egyptians, for instance, lived on a river that flooded every year, but this flood was completely benign. They had no legend of a catastrophic flood. All other riverine societies that I know of did have such legends. So did the Polynesians, who lived on islands in the typhoon belt.

    Jesus did not say that the Noachic flood was historical fact. Referring to the end of the world, he said “As it was in the days of Noah…”, In exactly the same way, I could say, “It’s like Yossarian – it’s catch 22!” It’s a literary reference. As TomS says, one of the odd things about people who call themselves “Bible believers” is that they invariably load the text with what they want it to say, even though it doesn’t actually say that.

    Finally, “good Christians” need not, and never need have, accepted the flood legend as history. What good Christians variously believe is stated in succinct terms in the various creeds, none of which mention it. Kevin is again Making Stuff Up.

  7. The Orchardist

    Even if just for the sake of argument we all accept that “maybe” there was a huge Noahic flood. There are so many questions that remain unanswered. For example, the unequal distribution of animals across the globe, the sheer physical impossibility of having every animal (and plant) on one boat, the effect of salinity on the land or conversely the effect of fresh water on marine creatures, etc. etc.

    Bible believers just cannot sensibly explain all different questions. It is simply impossible.

  8. Another possible explanation of why many cultures have flood legends — it was a way to explain seashell fossils found hundreds or even thousands of feet above sea level.

  9. Christine Janis

    I recommend this:
    Defeat of Flood Geology by Flood Geology.

  10. Flood believers that are Old Earth rather than Young Earth creationists aren’t unheard of. The Jehovah’s Witnesses are another example. They believe in Noah’s Ark and the global flood (which in Watchtower chronology occurred in 2370 BCE), but also accept that earth and the universe are millions, maybe billions of years old. In fact, the Witnesses try to claim that they “are not creationists” because of this, though they absolutely reject the notion of (macro)evolution and maintain that all basic “kinds” were directly created by Jehovah. Apparently the Watchtower writers think all “creationists” are necessarily YEC.

  11. “Jesus regarded the Noahic flood as a historical fact, and that’s good enough for me.”

    Well, that convinces me that the Earth really is flat after all, Jesus sure thinks it is. Oh, and obviously demons must also exist for the same “reason”.
    Luke 4:5: “The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world.”

  12. “every branch of the human race has a story about a great flood”
    Nope, the Surinamese don’t. Of course it’s possible that Kevin doesn’t consider the people of Suriname a branch of the human race.

    “Kevin is an old-Earth Flood believer, perhaps the first we’ve ever seen.”
    They seem to be quite rare indeed, but recently I learned about this site:

  13. Zetopan: when I quoted that to the latest Jehovah’s (why can they not even get the name of their god right?) Witnesses to invade my door, one blurted that Jesus had television. I was laughing so much that I overlooked the obvious response: why, in that case, did he need to be up a mountain?

  14. If he had television, then he wouldn’t have to go to a high mountain. (BTW, doesn’t the fact that one sees farther the higher one goes mean that the Earth is not flat? Not that the conclusion would necessarily occur to people who were aware of the fact.)
    My favorite is that the mountain was on the Moon. At that, he’d have to wait for a day for the Earth to rotate under the Moon, but that’s OK.