The Flood and the Tower

The stories of Noah's Flood and the Tower of Babel sound fantastical. Are we to understand them literally? Or are they just legends adopted from other cultures?

Day One: The Purpose of the Flood
Genesis 6 gives the sad account of the state of humanity prior to the worldwide flood during the days of Noah. Genesis 6:5 states, "The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time"...
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Day Two: The Global Flood
The biblical passages regarding the flood make it clear that it was global. Genesis 7:11 states that "all the springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened"...
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Day Three: The Justice of Genocide
The global flood of Noah's day was the direct judgment of a just God. The Bible says the flood wiped out "people and animals and the creatures that move along the ground and the birds" — everything that breathed air (Genesis 7:23)...
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Day Four: Rain before the Flood
Some interpret Hebrews 11:7 as saying it had never rained prior to the Flood...Rain could be the correct understanding of "things not yet seen," or it could be referring to the Flood in general...
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Day Five: Ark Details
How long did it take to build the Ark? How many animals were on the Ark? Details about the Ark...
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Day Six: The Floating Zoo
How did Noah fit all of those animals on the ark? Was the ark big enough to fit "two of every kind...of the birds after their kind, and of the animals after their kind, of every creeping thing of the ground after its kind," and seven of some kinds?...
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Day Seven: The Lost Ark
There have been numerous claimed discoveries of Noah's Ark in recent years. The discoveries have been in various locations, ranging from Mount Ararat in Turkey, to a mountain range in Iran...
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Day Eight: Global Flood, Global Myths
It is true that the Genesis flood account shares many striking similarities with the Babylonian Gilgamesh epic, and with the Babylonian Atrahasis epic, for that matter. In fact, literally hundreds of flood traditions have been preserved all over the world...
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Day Nine: The Epic of Gilgamesh
The Epic of Gilgamesh is an ancient poem about a king of Uruk who was one-third god. Parts of the original Sumerian story may have been written as early as 2100 BC, although Gilgamesh is said to have reigned around 2700 BC...
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Day Ten: The Tower of the Babel
After the Flood, God commanded humanity to "increase in number and fill the earth" (Genesis 9:1). Humanity decided to do the exact opposite, "Then they said, 'Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth'"...
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Day Eleven: Peleg's Divided Earth
In 1 Chronicles 1:19 it is noted that the earth was divided in the days of Peleg: "Two sons were born to Eber: One was named Peleg, because in his time the earth was divided...The detail that "the earth was divided" has caused some to speculate about the exact nature of the division...
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Image Credit: bertknot; "Noah's ark, Dordrect"; Creative Commons

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Published 10-21-15