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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