Part One - Let’s use the Scientific Method to put this question to the test.

Let’s see if we can apply the Scientific Method to a spiritual or biblical question. 

The Bible says God sent a great flood to the earth.  Some believe it was a global flood and covered the entire earth.  Some believe it only occurred to one local area of the earth.

Was Noah’s Flood a global flood or a local flood?

What do we know about Noah's Flood?

a. God had Noah spend a whole year building a huge boat.

 

b. God brought two of every kind of animal to that location to preserve them alive.

d. All the high mountains were covered.  Mt. Ararat in that area is over 16,000 feet high.

 

e. It rained for 40 days, but the waters kept rising for 5 months.

 

f. God used the terms “all,” “every,” and “whole” to describe the flood:

 

Genesis 7:4 “For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living substance that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth.”

 

Genesis 7:19 “all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered.”

 

Genesis 7:21 “And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man:”

 

Genesis 7:22 “All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.”

 

Genesis 7:23 “And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark.”

 

Genesis 8:21 “neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.”

 

Genesis 9:11 “And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.”

 

Genesis 9:15 “And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.”

 

g. The Bible indicates that God used the offspring of Noah and his sons only to repopulated the whole earth after the flood.

 

Genesis 9:18-19 “…   These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread.”

 

Genesis 10:32 “These are the families of the sons of Noah, after their generations, in their nations: and by these were the nations divided in the earth after the flood.”

 

h. The promise that God would never allow waters to cover the earth again is made in Genesis 9:15, and reinforced in Psalm 104:9.  It is not mentioned in Genesis 1:9-10.

Based on what the Bible says about Noah's Flood I would hypothesize that Noah's Flood was not restricted to just a local area.

If my hypothesis is true, there should be scientific evidence for a world-wide flood. 

The fossil record extends over the whole earth.  We find “marine” fossils on top of all the highest mountain ranges, like you would find on the bottom of the ocean.

Just based on the Biblical evidence alone is enough to know the flood of Noah was not restricted to just a local area.

Part Two - Let's compare the events of Genesis 1:9-10 with Psalm 104:6-9

Genesis 1:9-10

“And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.”  KJV

 

He gathers the waters together and dry land appears.  God apparently created Sea basins and the waters ran off into them, and then the dry land appeared.  No mention is made of creating mountains.  However, in Genesis 7:19 it mentions the existence of “high hills.”  The Hebrew words for “high hills” indicates elevated mountain ranges or hills.  Genesis 7:20 goes on to say: “and the mountains were covered.”  So, we know mountains existed at the time of the flood, we just aren’t told when God created them, or how high they were.

 

Now let’s look at the description given for what God did in Psalm 104:6-9.

 

6 “Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a garment: the waters stood above the mountains.

 7 At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away.

 8 They go up by the mountains; they go down by the valleys unto the place which thou hast founded for them.

 9 Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth.”  KJV

 

Verse 6 and 7 indicate when God spoke the waters started receding rapidly: “hasted away.”  The Hebrew words for “go up by the mountains” in v.8 literally mean “the mountains rose.”  The Hebrew word for “valleys” is an interesting word.  It means a split between mountain ranges.  Literally it is saying that God spoke and mountain ranges rose up and the earth below was not only pushed downward but a split took place creating deep water basins between mountain ranges, and the waters that covered the mountains ran down into these newly formed deep water basins.

 

Was this referring to the creation week and specifically what was described in Genesis 1:9-10; or is it describing something that took place toward the end of Noah’s Flood? 

I believe there are four keys to understanding this passage:

1. God’s promise to never allow the waters to cover the earth again is only found in this passage and in Genesis 9:11-15.  It isn’t found in connection with Genesis 1:9-10.

 

2. In the account of Noah’s Flood in Genesis 8, the waters were receding at the rate of about 25 feet every 2 ½ months.  After 5 months it had gone down about 50 feet.  If Mt. Ararat existed at that time, which is about 16,700 feet high, the waters would still be about 16,650 feet deep.  But then something happened.  Just 4 months later the water had gone away and the earth was completely dried.  How can that be explained unless God spoke and high mountains rose up at deep oceans were formed?

 

Another thing to consider is, if those mountains were formed at the end of Noah’s Flood, then you don’t have to account for waters over 16,000 feet deep, but perhaps only a few hundred feet deep.  An extra 400 to 500 feet of water going away and the land drying in 4 months after God formed the mountains and ocean basins is a little easier to visualize.

 

3. The scriptures say that God set a boundary that the waters would not pass over again.  The high mountain rages are found mostly along coastlines.

 

4. Marine fossils are found on top of all the high mountain ranges.  These were marine life forms that had been buried suddenly and deeply by a global catastrophe.  As God spoke and the soil began to be pulled upward to form the high mountains, many of those fossils ended up on top of the mountains.  The only other alternative I know of is maybe there were ancient seafood restaurants on top of all the high mountain ranges at one point in history.

 

Do you believe the continents look like they would fit together like a puzzle because they split apart and drifted over hundreds of millions of years; or because the Hebrew words in Psalm 104 indicate when God spoke and created mountain ranges and deep oceans there was a splitting apart that took place as He moved them out to where they basically are now?  Your answer to that question will probably depend on your chosen philosophical worldview.