Re: Physics of a Mesopotamian Flood

Bill Hamilton (
Sun, 12 May 1996 06:07:21 -0400

Dick Fischer wrote(responding to Glenn):

>Where your methodology runs into trouble is that your location for
>the flood has no historical backing. It's just a place you selected
>where a geological event transpired. I can't think of any
>paleoanthropologist who would agree with the notion that Homo
>erectus knew anything about brass and iron working, or how to make
>"lyres" and "harps." I can't think of any theologian who believes
>that the patriarchs were other than Homo sapiens. It is primarily
>your time frame that runs afoul both science and theology. Noah at
>5.5 million years ago is a stretch of unthinkable proportions.

I reviewed Glenn's book of the evolution reflector and PSCF also published
my review. I gave the book a fairly positive review because I wanted
people to read it and discuss it. I have admitted both to Glenn and to the
reflector that I have problems with some of it. However, there is something
I very much like about the 5.5 MYA date for the flood. Do we really have
as much information about the flood as we would expect to have for a flood
in 2900 BC or so? That wasn't all that long ago, really. We do have some
flood legends from other cultures, but not all of them correlate with the
Biblical flood. (One regular on claims that Akkadia was
having drought conditions at the time the young-earth creationists
generally believe the flood occurred) The Gilgamesh Epic does, and I
presume a few others do, but do we really have as much material as we would
expect from a cataclysm that almost wiped man out 5000 yeas ago? On the
other hand, if it occurred 5.5 million years ago, then it's possible that
the only reason we have the account at all is because God told some of
Moses' ancestors about it. They passed it on to the Babylonians and a few
others, but the only reason they had information about such an ancient
event was that God explicitly told them.

The aspect I don't like of course (one of them) is that the evidence is all
either at the bottom of the Mediterranean or destroyed in the hot, humid
climate of North Africe -- a circumstance that will be considered "too
convenient--a 'just-so story'" by skeptics who like to discredit
Christianity. I also have to admit that the idea of God making man by
resurrecting the miscarriage of an ape repels me. I much prefer Roy
Clouser's revelation approach, albeit it explicialy allows for a continuing
presence of non_Adamites.

Still, the fact that Glenn's view fits the geological data and could be the
kind of cataclysm described in Genesis is attractive enough to me that I'm
willing to say that it should be considered seriously. If it turned out to
be a viable approach -- if for example we found artifacts of the right age
in cores from the Mediterranean -- it wouldn't be the first time that the
actual explanation of a Biblical account has been surprising.

William E. Hamilton, Jr., Ph.D.
1346 W. Fairview Lane
Rochester, MI 48306
(810) 652 4148