26 July 2009

Types: Noah

This is the third message in our summer series, "Types", which focuses on Christ revealed through characters of the Old Testament.
In the vast collection of crazies that inhabit the Christian world, some actually believe the Bible to be history - even in crazy accounts like the global flood described in Genesis 7! Now, why would any nut job consider this to be true?

Glad you asked.

I believe the account of the global flood of Noah because...

1) Rejecting it does violence to the veracity of the whole Bible.
“The first half of Genesis is history, space-time history, the Fall is a space-time Fall, or we have no knowledge of what Jesus came to die for and we have no way to understand that God is really a good God. Our whole answer to evil rests upon the historic, space-time Fall. There was a time before man revolted against God. The internal evidence of Genesis and the external evidences (given in the New Testament by the way the New Testament speaks of the first half of Genesis) show that the first half of Genesis is really meant to be space-time history. We must understand that here we are dealing with history -that is, space and time, the warp and woof of history" – Francis Schaeffer
We have to be honest about the canon of Scripture. As a "standard", the Bible falls apart under "selective acceptance." When the account of Noah is marginalized as a parable, God's complete judgment against sin and the endurance of His redemptive promise are marginalized as well.

If a global flood did not happen, a) the book of Genesis is unreliable (Genesis 6:17), b) Peter is deceived or a liar (2 Peter 2:5) and c) Jesus is a liar:
“the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man” (Matt 24:39)
2) There is legitimate scientific evidence of a "recent" global flood.
These few points are not assumed to end the debate. They reveal scientific evidence of a recent (much less than 250,000 year-old) global flood.

a) The fossil record is a "nagging problem for gradualistic accounts." From evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould:
"The extreme rarity of transitional forms in the fossil record persists as the trade secret of paleontology. The evolutionary trees that adorn our textbooks have data only at the tips and nodes of their branches; the rest is inference, however reasonable, not the evidence of fossils. Yet Darwin was so wedded to gradualism that he wagered his entire theory on a denial of this literal record:

The geological record is (here Gould is quoting Darwin) 'extremely imperfect and this fact will to a large extent explain why we do not find intermediate varieties, connecting together all the extinct and existing forms of life by the finest graduated steps. He who rejects these views on the nature of the geological record will rightly reject my whole theory.'

Darwin's argument still persists as the favored escape of most paleontologists from the embarrassment of a record that seems to show so little of evolution. In exposing its cultural and methodological roots, I wish in no way to impugn the potential validity of gradualism (for all general views have similar roots). I wish only to point out that it was never "seen" in the rocks.

Paleontologists have paid an exorbitant price for Darwin's argument. We fancy ourselves as the only true students of life's history, yet to preserve our favored account of evolution by natural selection we view our data as so bad that we never see the very process we profess to study."

Stephen Jay Gould 'Evolution's erratic pace'. Natural History, vol. LXXXVI95), May 1977, p.14. (emphasis mine)
b) The universal presence of Carbon-14 in Phanerozoic fossils and diamonds indicates a recent global catastrophe.

c) When you find blood in a T Rex, the logical conclusion is that the T Rex was preserved instantly and recently NOT that blood proteins are durable for 68 million years!

The implications are profound.
There is a gravity to Genesis 6-8 if, as it claims, God destroyed every human life on the planet (save eight). The historicity of the account requires us to seriously consider the implications in a way that a parable simply cannot. If Genesis 6-8 is an accurate account of a historical event, we discover that God:
  • sees wickedness (Genesis 6:5);
  • repents (Genesis 6:6-7);
  • is patient but not like you think (1 Peter 3:20);
  • judges fiercely and unexpectedly (Genesis 6:7,17, Genesis 7:19-24, and Matthew 24:36-39);
  • saves (2 Peter 2:9); and
  • restores (Genesis 8:15-19)
We also see much of Christ as Noah foreshadows his saving effect as a
  • herald of righteousness (2 Peter 2:5 and Luke 20:1)
  • man blameless in his generation (Genesis 6:9, Genesis 7:1 and Hebrews 4:15)
  • man submitted to God (Genesis 7:5 and Hebrews 11:7)
  • one who received the burden to save (Genesis 9:20-21 - note: where Noah handles this imperfectly Christ handles it perfectly; Matthew 26:42)
  • an intercessor (Genesis 8:1 and 2 Peter 2:5)
Why it matters...
The Gospel springs forth with thrilling intensity from the most extreme events of the Bible so they are much too important to reject simply because of intimidation. Doing so needlessly neuters the good news of a universal, resurrected and rescuing King (1 Corinthians 15:14-26).

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