Not only are proofs of Noah’s Flood in bits and pieces scattered throughout Earth, almost every culture and religion of the ancient world has legends describing a cataclysmic deluge event that matches the biblical account of the Flood either precisely or with striking similarities. In addition to written records, we have pictographs, and remember: The ancient images on walls and slabs have generally been what historians, scientists, and scholars of all sorts of conviction (secular and religious) have used to paint a picture of what humankind’s earliest experiences may have looked like. We can reconstruct the past through these visual testimonies.
Following the most primitive form of writing (pictographs), early cultures recognized how tedious it was to draw or carve everything they saw and experienced, so throughout centuries they developed more innovative, time-saving forms of written communication. This led to ideographs (the combination of certain pictures to represent feelings or emotion); logographs (the combination of pictographs and ideographs); and, eventually, symbols that represented sounds uttered from the mouth (alphabets with vowels and consonants).
From records of these multiple media, we’ve learned much about the ancients: which deities were worshiped, by whom, and the legends that led to where, why, and how they were worshiped; what sacred beliefs were attached to specific objects, structures, substances, or medicines (gemstones, oils, herbs, spices, flowers, vegetation, altars, etc.); the relationship between people and many space objects (stars, sun, moon, planets); the experiences of people during seemingly phenomenal or spiritual occurrences (sunsets or anomalous lights in the sky, the incoming and outgoing of the tide, sudden shifts in the direction of the wind, as well as natural laws like gravity); who the leaders or royals of the locals were, what was expected of them, how they were appointed, and what some of them did to fail miserably in their duties for the people; wars, social and political subordination or rebellion, and the obliteration of entire populations (often as a result of these conflicts); what meals were eaten, what ingredients went into those dishes (barley, corn, various meats, etc.) and how they were prepared; how tools were made, and what they were used for; what common objects were useful and how (jars, baskets, head coverings, etc.); the daily routine of commonfolk; how they viewed the cycle of life and the events that contributed to them (birth, death, etc.); and many other details.
Scripture isn’t the only ancient document that includes an account of the Flood. We see accounts of the global deluge coming from people from other regions, including:
- The Mesopotamians: The Epic of Gilgamesh and the story of Utnapishtim who built the “preserver of life” boat from solid timber;
- The Aztecs: The tale of a man and woman who survived a great flood because they were sealed inside a cypress tree by the deity Titlacauan (or Tezcatlipoca);
- The Greeks: Belief that a man named Deucalion, son of Titan Prometheus, was warned about a deluge sent by the god Zeus, so they built a boat, survived the flood, and landed on Mt. Parnassus, where they threw stones that turned into people who would repopulate Earth;
- The Hindus: Manu, the first man, who received word from a fish deity, Lord Vishnu, that a flood was coming, so he constructed a boat and tied it to the horn of the fish and, after the flood subsided, landed atop a mountain where he was eventually met by a woman rising from the waters who assisted him in repopulation;
- The Chinese: A multitude of flood-story variations involving thunder gods, giant floating gourd-boats, dismembered babies becoming new men and women, etc.;
- The Norse: A folk tale about a “blood flood” that covered the earth following the murder of the giant Ymir at the hand of Odin and his brothers, though a frost giant and his wife were spared, surviving the waves of blood in an ark;
- The ancient Native Americans: A belief that the Great Spirit sent a flood and only one man, Waynaboozhoo, survived on a raft of logs…
…and this list doesn’t even scratch the surface
In short, Noah’s Flood is well attested to, and additionally, we have geological evidence of it all over the world. So, by no means do I disbelieve the Flood occurred just because it doesn’t also prove Earth is young. This leads me to an important moment in this study: I do think some of the evidence in favor of a Young Earth is accurate!
ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW VIDEO:
Could Both Young and Old-Earth Evidence Be True?
In many areas of today’s world, the Flood of Noah’s day certainly can account for what we see that science has a harder time explaining. One such example could be how marine fossils are found at the top of mountains scattered all over the world, suggesting that, at one point, Earth was completely covered in water. (Interestingly, Dr. Tom Horn visited the Grand Canyon a few years back, and a certain expert in his tour party presented a collection of marine fossils as “proof that the entire Grand Canyon and surrounding mountain regions were covered in water thousands of years ago.” Though this individual did not expound on Noah’s Flood in particular, it was clear that was a central consideration.)
And, yes, scientists do have an explanation for this phenomenon: Past tectonic plate shifting has raised giant areas of rock that were once buried under Earth’s crust or on the ocean floor, and the fossils “hitched a ride” to the top. Global warming and rising sea levels are also factors.
Could these (and other) explanations account for some of what we find? Of course. But can we dismiss all mountaintop marine fossils and other evidence of Noah’s Flood as naturally occurring? That is harder to accept, simply because the whole globe offers evidence of that event. Obviously, evidence in favor of the Flood as a valid event isn’t limited to fossils and a few desperate findings by believing Christians. Secular sources report on Flood-related discoveries all the time. Even the Smithsonian Institution, in an article titled, “Evidence for a Flood,” acknowledges that “recently scientists have started to uncover evidence that Noah’s flood may have a basis in some rather astonishing events that took place around the Black Sea some 7,500 years ago,” which the article links to the “last great glaciation some 20,000 years ago.”[i] Another example is a report published by ABC News titled, “Evidence Noah’s Biblical Flood Happened, Says Robert Ballard,” which details a deep, underwater dive that “unearthed an ancient shoreline, proof to [underwater archeologist] Ballard that a catastrophic event [like Noah’s Flood] did happen.”[ii] There is no shortage of reports on this long-ago incident, both inside and outside the Church. Yet, strangely, a great number of Flood-related findings appear to support a Young Earth. So, what do we make of the conflict?
First: If the world is very old, there would be evidence of that, and I believe there is (much more than what has been discussed regarding dating methods in this chapter). Second: If the world were created again six thousand years ago—over the top of, and interlaced with, the old world—we would definitely see evidence of that as well. The nature of such a seismic, global change to the planet—with fresh matter (living and nonliving) of all sorts springing up from the surface of the former planet—would certainly imply a Young Earth. In fact, I not only concede that, I expect that. Therefore, Young Earthers wouldn’t necessarily be wrong each time they interpret Flood evidence in that manner. (The error is in assuming the biblical Flood can and does account for all the bizarre millions of years of layering that science can otherwise explain in natural terms.)
Could massive geological damage to Earth account for the Young Earth findings that apparently defy science? Why not? Because Earth is old, but the re-creation from Genesis 1:3 forward through Creation week and the Flood are more recent events that left global fingerprints all over the surface of that Old Earth:
- God created Earth millions or billions of years ago.
- Something happened that rendered the planet “without form, and void” for an indefinite period.
- God re-created Earth six to ten thousand years ago.
From this perspective, scientific dating methods that support millions or billions of years of history in a certain culture, region, or assortment of artifacts could point to Earth’s absolute earliest days—prior to Genesis 1:3—while Young Earthers’ evidence could point to what God re-created in six days (or ages). Earth was made, then it was made “formless/void,” then it was made again.
This all throws endless possibilities into the bigger picture, some of which may account for what science has presented to be early phases of human evolution. As one example: The Bible doesn’t appear to allow for any interpretation of co-Adamites (partly evolved ape men cohabiting Earth alongside Adam), though, from the Gap theory perspective of two Creation events, there may have been a pre-Adamic race of semi-intelligent beings science would easily see as a common ancestor of man (which is technically what Darwin said these earlier ape men were): a race or species of creatures who may or may not have appeared quite humanlike in their bipedal anatomy who occupied this planet before humanity existed and before Earth became void.
I realize that, to some, this sounds too sensational to believe, but that’s likely because it’s a new (or largely unheard of) idea. But consider what we’re really talking about here: God is the Master Creator over all, and He has made millions of life forms that we can study and observe at this very moment. According to the Royal Entomological Society, “Over one million species of insects have been discovered and described but it is estimated that there may be as many as 10 million species on earth.”[iii] And that is only in reference to insects! So, if there was an era of Earth’s history that stretched back to a time before Adam was formed, as the biblical Hebrew linguists frequently insist is a possible interpretation of Genesis, then why would it be hard to believe God’s earliest creative abilities had formed all sorts of species, including something that shared visible and/or biological traits with Adam? A dog isn’t the same thing as a cat, though both grow similar coats of fur, walk on four legs, have longer tails than many other species of animals, submit to some level of domestication, interact with humanity, and share countless other similarities. So long as we don’t confuse the fact that, biblically and theologically speaking, Adam was the first human, different than the rest when he was made in the image of God, I don’t have a problem thinking something that looked similar to him walked Earth’s surface before he did.
There is yet another possibility. What if the Darwinian ape men were something wicked developed through the detestable, blasphemous, God-usurping, fallen angels who already illustrated their willingness and capability of manipulating the DNA of God’s Creation in Genesis 6:4 (tackled in chapter 7 of the book Before Genesis)?
And what about the dinosaurs? Could they be a part of that potential scenario as well?
Of course, this is hypothetical, but it sure would explain some of those “human ancestor” remains scattered about…as well as astoundingly bizarre sites that show an extreme intelligence to be alive and thriving, dated to exist well before Adam’s time.
It is to that subject we’ll turn in the next entry.
UP NEXT: MYSTERY HISTORY
[i] Trefil, James, “Evidence for a Flood,” April 1, 2000, Smithsonian Magazine, last accessed May 4, 2023, https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/evidence-for-a-flood-102813115/.
[ii] Millman, Jenna, Bryan Taylor, and Lauren Effron, “Evidence Noah’s Biblical Flood Happened, Says Robert Ballard,” December 5, 2012, ABC News, last accessed May 4, 2023, https://abcnews.go.com/Technology/evidence-suggests-biblical-great-flood-noahs-time-happened/story?id=17884533.
[iii] “Understanding Insects: Facts and Figures—Did You Know?” Royal Entomological Society, last accessed March 17, 2023, https://www.royensoc.co.uk/understanding-insects/facts-and-figures/.