Tuesday, 1 April 2014

The Noah Film and the Flood

I haven’t see the Noah movie yet although I intend to. Answers in Genesis (AiG) sent some researchers to have a look and they produced this review http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/noah-movie/detailed-review. 

Assuming (as I do) that the review is accurate, the film (written and produced by atheists) is not merely a highly inaccurate re-telling of the biblical Noah Flood story, but takes extreme liberties with the character of Noah, misrepresents the nature of God and angels, and adds numerous completely fantastic extra-biblical features.
The film departs so far from the Genesis story that viewers should have no difficulty recognising that the two accounts have nothing in common other than a lot of water and the names of some of the characters. Perhaps this is a good thing, a subtle lie may be easier swallowed that a truly gross one. But then again....we humans have proved capable of swallowing some pretty gigantic lies, especially when they make us feel good about ourselves. The AiG review suggests that the film is something of an eco-parable, probably with an anti climate change agenda, and of course supports big bang to humans evolution.

AiG discourages people from seeing the film (while not calling for a boycott) but acknowledges that it may bring up opportunities to talk about God, Genesis, the Noah Flood, Jesus and the coming Judgment. This is not an easy thing for Christians to talk about, and atheists are already talking up the idea of God as a moral monster for destroying all but a handful of the earth’s inhabitants. We read in Genesis chapter 6 verse 5 onwards that as man spread through the earth,
'God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually...And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and was grieved in His heart’.
This is perhaps the most distressing thing that has ever been written.

The bible teaches that God did have a plan to redeem men and women, or some at least, and that it was a necessity in His divine plan of salvation to terminate the wicked culture that had emerged though men’s rebellion against him, men having ‘...filled the earth with violence...all flesh having corrupted its way’ (subsequent verses in chapter 6). The Flood was a regrettably necessary part of that plan.

All the usual questions will come up. If God knew this level of human wickedness would happen, why go ahead with the creation? Shouldn't He have practiced better safeguarding? What about innocent children? How much warning and opportunity to change did people get? Who is He to judge us? etc. I’m afraid you will have to address those questions to the Almighty; perhaps you will have better success than Job (see Book of Job chapter 38 onwards).

Jesus referred to the Noah Flood as history, and as a warning of future universal judgment. See Matthew’s Gospel chapter 24 verses 36-40

"But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.  For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark...and the Flood destroyed them all.’

There are also 2 references in Peter's letters to the historicity of the Noah Flood, and the fact that in the last days people would deny the Flood and mock believers. See 1 Peter 3:20 and 2 Peter 2:5 and 3:3-9, which like Jesus' reference cited above, link the past judgment to future judgment. Both judgments are seen by scripture as deserved, inevitable and universal, but also with a possibility of being saved by turning to God.
I don’t have time right now to go into all the evidence for the Flood, beyond a few bullet points

-there is plenty enough water to cover the whole earth if you raise the ocean trenches, lower the highest mountains and allow for the ice caps to melt (or rather to have not yet formed). This is perfectly feasible given a creation in which there were no ocean trenches, ice caps or high mountains prior to the Flood. The ocean trenches and high mountains could have been created by speeded up tectonic plate activity at God’s command. This is hinted at in the Genesis account where we read that as well as rain, God ‘broke up the fountains of the great deep’ (Genesis chapter 7 verse 11).
-many ancient cultures have legends about a great flood that covered the earth and in which a few people were saved through a boat.
-billions of fossils are found all over the earth in sedimentary rock which could only have been formed through massive movements of liquid mud.
-billions of tons of fossil fuel (oil, shale, gas, coal) exist in thick layers beneath the earth. The most feasible explanation for all this buried biomass is a global flood. Burial must have been rapid to have ensured anaerobic breakdown of the biomass to fossil fuel.

These matters are dealt with in more depth in various creationist sources.

It is appalling that God would destroy the earth in this way. But if He did, then our response should rather than to judge our maker as a moral monster, we should ask why He would have done this. Jesus linked the past judgment by water to a coming judgment by fire. Will we judge God? Or will HE judge us? Wicked people are apt to deceive themselves about their own righteousness, but as Isaiah wrote 'Hail will sweep away the refuge of lies'.

It is what it is. If you can read this, there’s time to repent and get right with God though faith in and obedience to Jesus, whom God sent to be our Ark.



No comments:

Post a Comment

feel free to comment, good manners and lucidity are appreciated.