The Biblical Flood: New Thoughts, New Questions

September 19, 2012

Briefing Outlines

A flood of great proportions is described in Genesis 6-9. The text never indicates that it was anything other than a historical event. The Flood, and, or Noah, the builder of the Ark, are mentioned 7 more times in the OT. These passages are Gen.10:1,32; 11:10; I Chron. 1:3; Isa. 54:9; and Ezek.14:14,20. The NT also assumes that a great deluge came on the earth as the result of God’s judgement: See Matt. 24:37-39; Lk. 3:36; 17:27; Heb. 11:7; I Pet. 3:18-21, and II Pet. 2:5; 3:3-7. ( See Noah and the Flood in Jewish, Christian and Muslim Tradition in the Biblical Archaeologist, Dec. 1984.)

The Pseudepigrapha, a corpus of extra-biblical literature written from the Second Century B.C. to the First Century A.D., likewise contains many references to a catastrophic Flood. It is found most prominently in the books of I Enoch, Jubilees, and the Genesis Apocryphon.

Josephus, a very important historian of the First Century, expounds on the Flood as he recounts Jewish history in his work Antiquities of the Jews. He basically recounts the Biblical story, but adds that the Flood began 2656 years after Adam. Josephus, who had access to all the libraries of Rome, quotes from many pagan sources (some which are no longer available) who also wrote about a historical Flood.

To read the entire arti­cle, download the pdf here.

About Bill

Bill Crouse is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary and has done graduate studies at the U. of Texas at Dallas in the History of Ideas. The ministry of C.I.M. is dedicated to defending the historic faith in a postmodern world.

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