Noah’s flood: All truth is God’s truth

Savrasov, “The Rainbow” (1875)


Gen. 9:8-17

For Sunday, March 1, 2009
First Sunday of Lent

In this chapter God says to Noah, “I now establish my covenant with you . . . Never again will all life be cut off by the waters of a flood . . . This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you . . . I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth.”

Is this credible from a historical and scientific perspective? The question is important, because it would mean first that the Bible speaks to all of life, and second that the reality is that we are not merely chance products of Darwinian evolution.

The irony is that not all Christians agree. Some believe that Noah’s flood was regional in extent, while others believe it literally covered the whole earth. Resolving this disagreement is not important here. What is important is to challenge each of us to put together a coherent worldview that best accounts for the evidence from theology, history, and science.

One important point to remember is that facts are not self-interpreting. Rather, facts are interpreted within the framework of a worldview. The worldview from which one starts will help to determine which facts are relevant or even noticed, and what they mean.

Is the earth young or old? What does the Bible really suggest? What scientific evidence is there on either side? Could Noah’s flood and Noah’s ark really have happened? How sad that these questions so often don’t get asked either in public schools or in the church.

One place to start for answers is the website “Reasons to Believe“. This particular site takes the position that the earth is old and that both Creation and Noah’s Flood are real. Another interesting place to begin one’s thinking is the Wikipedia article on flood geology.

The important and exciting thing to me, even though there are different interpretive options available, is that there is overwhelming evidence that the Bible speaks credibly and truthfully to all of life. Maybe if we spent more time putting our worldviews together our lives would begin to come together as well.

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