In 1961, a book was published that would change the religious landscape of the United States. It was called the Genesis Flood, and it posited a defense of the supposed global flood of Genesis 6-9 (which I maintain [together with the majority of geologists] never transpired). The book engineered a brand new movement — called the “Scientific Creationism” movement among Evangelical Christians, which lent considerable “scientific” clout to the new “Jesus movement,” and created an entirely new ethos or social and ecclesiastical orientation to this new trend in “pop Christianity as scientifically respectable.” But the whole episode roots in a single lie, the ‘historical nature’ of an actual worldwide flood.
The truth is that the world’s mountains, instead, long ago sat beneath the oceans before they arose out of the murky, oceanic waters, teeming with life. This is why we have seashells at the highest elevations, not because the world was inundated by a deity angry at less-than-impressive global demographics.
And the contradictions within these three chapters should not go unnoticed. First, Noah’s sacrifice comes too early to be acceptable (Before God “okays” the killing of animals verbally) and yet is falsely accepted anyway, as was Abel’s slaying of an animal (Chapter 4) and that of God used (supposedly) to clothe Adam and Eve. They did not yet have Aeropostale.
Strangely, the false and extraordinarily dim view the passage takes of mankind — that his thoughts were only evil continually (even USC thinks better of UCLA than that!) — repeats unnecessarily, a bad habit of the narrative. Three times it urges us to believe that all humanity is dreadful, and that we should not bother with philanthropy.
There is a certain mathematical window-dressing to the Flood Account (Gen. 6 – 9) that bears special attention. My own reconstruction of the obsession it has with numerical details indicates it — the added details arose from a priestly redaction at the time of the writing of that tradition that would later become the Book of Numbers.
Here are some of the relevant facts of the Orphic Euphoria of Genesis 6 – 9.
- A very large deposit of numerical information comes out of this section of text uniquely in Genesis, where nothing else like it appears in the book, before or after.
- This includes the lifespan of Noah at certain points, dimensions of the Ark, timing of rain both falling and receding, how long the incident took, etc.
- This uniqueness and suddenness in the literature of the somewhat surprising numerical fanfare suggests a later addition (as a new deposit of information) superimposed on the original text as a redactive effort.
- Added to this, I note the fact that no one cares about these insipid details. Later texts of both Testaments systematically ignore this numerical accretion. It bears no theological importance in the later community of faith.
- Contradictions fill the text, as do worthless and needless repetitions. The reason for the Flood repeats twice, painting the most excessively dismal picture of man in the history of the world, that simply is not true to life. Nor is it true to the inherent goodness of mankind taught just 5 chapters earlier.
- The sacrifice of Noah is too early, where the biblical god okays the murder of animals after the fact, as with that of Abel, whose animal sacrifice (which Judaism and Xnty share in common with Satanism) comes way too early to be acceptable.
- The number of times the same information is replicated (sometimes immediately) shows that at least two layers of redactive information have been imported into the text. These three chapters probably comprised — by my extensive literary-critical estimate — originally, about one and one third chapters, with little repetition of information if any, and scant numerical data.
This blog post will continue when convenient.