Re: Four Rivers Revisited

Allen Roy (
Fri, 23 Apr 1999 23:16:09 -0700

> From: Dick Fischer <>
> "Fountains of the deep" (Gen.8:2) is common Assyrian terminology for the
irrigation canals.

References please. In 7:11 it is the 'great deep,' (not just deep) which
is synonymous with the vast oceans. See:

> The "pitch" in Gen.6:14 can be found oozing out of the sand
> in present-day Iraq which sits on millions upon millions of barrels of

According to Strong, kopher (pitch, 3724) means 'a cover.' that is 'a
village;' 'bitumen;' the 'henna plant dye;' and figuratively as a
'redemption price.' It is also translated as "bribe, camphire, ransom,
satisfaction, sum of money, and village" in the KJV. You are taking the
assumption that bitumen (meaning an asphalt) is what is meant here, thus
one looks to underground oil. However, it can just as easily simply mean a
covering, without designating what kind it might have been. Thus, oil ooze
from this or that place may be irrelevant.

>The "Nephilim" or giants in Gen.6:4 in the pre-flood period can be
>as those from whom the sons of Anak descended in Num.13:33, which is the
>post-flood period. Thus we have biblically identified flood-survivors,

Again from Strong, 'nephil(im)', coming from the root word 'naphal' meaning
'to fall', means 'a feller' (somone who causes someone to fall) such as a
bully or tyrant (or, as in the KJV, a giant). So, in Gen 6:4 we have a
bunch of bullies or tyrants rulling the earth in the days of Noah. In Num
13:33 we've got a tribe of bullies, the sons of bullies, the sons of Anak.
And Anak means a 'necklace for strangling.' Sounds like a bunch of good ol

Thus the nephilim of Gen and the nephilim of Num are related by their
actions, not by blood lines.

The city of Enoch (Gen.4:17) is listed as "E-Anna(k)" in the Sumerian
post-flood kinglist as the place where kingship was carried after Kish was
"smitten with weapons." It's located at Erech, and is still called "Eanna"
this day. A canal ran from Erech located north of the Euphrates to Eridu
south of the Euphrates and was used for trade between the two cities.

The association of the city of Enoch and E-anna(k) is pure supposition.
The only link is similarity in name sounds.

> Writing in 1864, M'Causland identified the Gihon as the "Gyudes"
> of the ancients, the modern Karkheh joined by the Kashkan river
> in the region of Cush, or Kush, in Eastern Mesopotamia - today
> called Khuzistan in Iran.

The only apparent similarity between the two names is the single similar
syllable sound 'Gi'. I don't see that as very strong evidence. If a river
named Euphraties were not near by would such an association even be
considered? What other evidence does he give?

>The fourth river, the Pison, was found only recently. Archaeologist Juris
>Zarins using LANDSAT space images discovered a "fossil river" which neatly
>rounds out the quartet. This was independently reported by James Sauer in
>1996 in "The River Runs Dry: Creation Story Preserves Historical Memory."
>Biblical Archaeology as mentioned earlier by Ray Zimmer.

Why is an un-named, previously unknown, fossil river labled Pison. Is it
because of the Biblical list of rivers? What is the independent evidence?

>This river, the Pison apparently, once flowed through northern Arabia
>gold is mined to this day. S. R. Driver placed Havilah (Gen.2:11) in The
>of Genesis published in 1938: it was "most probably" in the northeast of
>Arabia on the west coast of the Persian Gulf: "The gold of Arabia was
famed in

Why did Driver guess that Havilah was in northeast Arabia? Because a river
named Euphraties was near by and that there was gold in Arabia? What is
the independent, extra-Biblical evidence?

>Thus, all the rivers are known, the towns are known, and the people are

Only if you are not skeptical.