A response for Yosef

A response for Yosef

I thought that this would be an easy way to clearly handle the number of arguments that you have placed forward.. We could even converse through the comments here if you would prefer, but I thought that you had a lot of things to say that interested me.. Anyways, let's start with the first post you made..

Didn't you read the Genesis account carefully? Until modern times, it was kind of the norm for a family of 8, that is Noah, his wife, his 3 sons and their wives, to live in just one small room, maybe two. This was no pleasure cruise. The human compartment was probably quite small as they needed 3 decks to have enough room for all the animals, which were probably largely baby animals, as they would have better reproductive potential. Upon the flood waters finally assuaging, they could not get out of the ark fast enough. It was probably largely dark, lit by only a few lanterns, stank horribly as his 3 sons shoveled out the animal manure every single day.

Ok, so I did read Genisis carefully. In particular, I've reread Genesis chapters 6-9 just to make sure I really am doing this justice. A family of 8 is pretty normal even today in certain places. (I live in salt lake city, utah and there are many religious families this large.) Although you may think it to be conceivably to you to take care of every "kind" of animal with 8 people for a year, there are still problems with this idea. For instance, if you say that the animals were largely baby animals, then there are going to be serious issues with taking care of them without their parents. For mammals, who would provide the milk/nourishment for these animals? For birds (which are very hard to raise successfully without losses), what would they eat? More importantly though, the talk of baby animals and the layout of the ark was not specified in the bible. Saying it would need 3 floors for instance and that the animals are babies is just trying to rationalize how it might be possible without thinking of the major problem of the overwhelming unlikelihood and difficulty(if not impossibility) of it being possible/working out. Also, the concept of "not getting out of the ark fast enough" brings up then next issue.. Once the animals are on land, they still need to eat/reproduce. Many predators need the protein and such they get from eating other animals to reproduce. Essentially, even if the animals managed for the year on the ark, they now will be experiencing new problems. Conceivably, there would be fish all over the place, but that food would rot and would not last into the many many generations needed of reproduction before the animals could sustain themselves. You then also have the very hard problem of the extrodinary macro evolution needed to repopulate the earth in 4400 years. If this were possible you would expect something far far crazier in scale than the combrian explosion and this should be reflected in the fossil record/a layer commonly seen throughout the world. We should have a few layers essentially containing all known species and animals.

As for shoveling the manure and such.. I didn't quite want to touch that one because I am still not sure what you believe "a kind" is. I wouldn't think 3 people would be enough, but that would rely on how few animals you think were on the ark. Similarly, I guess it would possible to fit every "kind" on an ark if you thought there were only 100 small animals for instance, but notice that not having some exact understanding of how many animals/their total mass/their eating requirements would make it difficult to talk about

Anyways, let's break up your next post into some parts..

But what really is the problem with this great flood story? There are answers as to how all those animals could fit into the ark. Not so easily, but they did fit. There were pairs of each kind, and not each species, and there are far fewer kinds that species.

There are many things that seem to contradict the concept of a global flood. For instance, there are many many civilizations that went on going without mentions of a flood and with no perceived impact on their societies that have histories going back far far before and after the flood should had taken place. They don't make mention of a flood. There are also techniques like carbon dating that show that intermediate fossils/the evolution of animals did not take place over the thousands of years we are talking, but over millions of years.*

I'm not exactly sure what your belief is on what a kind is. I know there are different concepts of a "kind" in this context, but my not having exactly an understanding on how many animals this would be or the amount of space that would be needed makes it difficult for me/someone to say if it is impossible.

What reason do I have to believe that a century would not be long enough to build the ark? It would seem to seriously help that God gave Noah the necessary blueprints. Hey, I might try to build a spaceship, but if I built it way too grandiose, wouldn't I find that not even a century is enough time? But what if really smart aliens gave me blueprints that I could actually understand?

One reason you may have to doubt that 100 years would be enough time to make the Ark would just be the concept that 100 years of labor by 8 people (one of which is 500 some years old at the start) does not work with what we see in nature/history. We have no examples of people living this long outside of some "lore". This doesn't mean it couldn't happen I suppose, but "significant claims require significant evidence."

Next, the part about being able to build it because god gave the blueprints seems overly generous to me. Even if we simplify things down greatly and use tetris as an example, me knowing how big the tetris playing field is does not help me with the very real challenge of sticking all the blocks together in a way that fit's/makes sense. You could say that god probably gave noah more instruction, but that is again just trying to make sense of something when faced with a lack of a more probably explanation.  The Alien example seems a bit disingenuous here. If you said, "an alien gave me blueprints for a spaceship" I would expect the blueprints were more than a drawing of a flying saucer. Saying "this is how big it is" is not a blueprint.

And consider that Noah took God's warning very seriously. This was not some hobby project that he kept in his garage or workshop for days when he had nothing better to do. Building the ark was a massive undertaking, and he would have built it with great urgency, knowing that it was but a matter of time before the great flood came, and he had better be ready in time. Perhaps the sin of the people deeply grieved and worried him, making him all the more so believe that sudden destruction could befall them. The building of the ark actually saved humanity from being totally destroyed

Now, assuming the creator of all things told you that everything was about to be destroyed, I think it would go without saying that Noah would take it seriously. If Noah and his family did live that long, then maybe building an ark would had been possible. This assumption though requires you to believe some seriously troublesome things about biology and the historicity of the bible.

 I also have a theory that the immoral mad-scientists of the time, actually caused the great flood, which if so, would have been poetic justice against that very wicked generation. But so far, I do not see a lot with which I could prove my theory.

I am genuinly concerned for you, but understand why it would be preferable to believe (without any historical/imperical reason) that someone else caused a flood. This is not me being sarcastic or trying to win an argument, it's me being genuinely worried for your well being. 🙁 I'm not a psychologist and I will try not to behave like one. This is what I think about this statement though.

To acknowledge that a flood that killed every living thing (with lungs) was caused by someone who is suppose to be your "father" is a disturbing thing to do. Religion is something that falls into the category of a "core belief" for most people and, as such, grappling with the ugly side of it can be difficult/make us worry and freak out at times in the same way we would if we were being physically attacked. I think that this is denial though on your part though. To acknowledge that God would kill everything is akin to acknowledging that he does things we perceive as evil or immoral. You even attribute it to "immoral mad-scientists of the time." This seems to me that you do in fact view the flood as an immoral act. If you accept it was the action of God though, you are being forced to accept that the instinctual feeling that it is immoral might be wrong and that god knows best. This can't be a comfortable for you.

How specific is the Bible in saying that God would cause the great flood, or rather that there would be a great flood, cause not entirely specified? Anyhow God knows the future and at the very least, predicted it, let it happen for God's reasons, and warned righteous Noah.

Genisis is very clear on this actually.. It would take some serious mental gymnastics to construe this to be anything but clear. This is what Genisis said about this. I have linked the text to an online bible that lets you view all versions of this. It is quite clear in most all of them what is said.

Now let's talk about the different flood myths.

The legends from around the world of a great flood, 8 survivors, are all evidence that something like this did occur. They say behind most legends is some level of truth. Sure, the stories do not well agree and the stories are corrupted, exactly what we would expect if something like this actually happened some 4400 years ago.

This is actually a really complex subject since it involves cultures from all over the world. For sure, there are flood myths all over the world. From what little research I did personally on this, the best figures I found (many of which were from christian institutes) say that 3-9% of flood myths involve 8 people. There are many myths of this sort, but there are myths like the epic of Gilgamesh that had occurred thousands and thousands of years before the flood should had taken place.. There are many ideas as to why this may be, but there are certain factual arguments that simply make it more likely that flood myths are inherently a part of human societies. For instance, there are many many more myths of the sorts in places like fishing villages and such vs those people in land.

Still, this is the subject that I am most unfamiliar with. I do think that the comments I made earlier regarding cultures that continued on unaffected during the time frame the flood should had occurred though at least shows that there are things that should be explainable if a global flood occurred.


I am sorry this went so long! I wanted to do this topic the best justice I could. There are certainly more equipped people to talk about this topic than I. Again, I highly recommend the very detailed and informative videos from Aaron Raa on Noahs Ark. He covers just about anything you can think. Also, for the historicity of the bible, check out Bart Erhmens Lectures on the topic! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDfYA21lDic


*Earlier I mentioned carbon dating, but I wanted to just point out that carbon dating is something often misused. This can be done by choosing an element that essentially doesn't show much degradation over your "target" time frame or shows simply too much degradation to be useful in determining the age of something. As an example, if you wanted to know how long it had been since I have been at home after traveling and you looked at the fruit and vegetables in my pantry, you wouldn't ignore the rotten tomato and say "The potatos are still firm, he must have only been gone a few days." Likewise, you wouldn't use the time it takes for a tomato to rot and then apply when trying to figure out hold old the potato is. Sorry if that was a strange analogy, but I couldn't think of a better one.

For more information on carbon dating and why certain carbon dating methods aren't reliable for certain time frames, please check out this wiki article.




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