[b-hebrew] Genesis 1:2 - And the earth was without form,

Dave Washburn dwashbur at nyx.net
Sun Apr 23 09:48:19 EDT 2006


On Sunday 23 April 2006 00:11, Yigal Levin wrote:
> Dear Steve and Peter,
>
> The idea that the laws of nature were somehow different before the Flood is
> a well-known way of dealing with the "discrepancies" between a literal
> reading of Genesis and "natural history". In fact, such claims are made in
> the Talmud. They are not, however, based upon the biblical text. Gen. 8
> does NOT claim that there were no seasons before the Flood, only that the
> seasons would continue henceforth uninterrupted. 

But if that's the case, why mention them at all?  It seems extraneous.  The 
only reason I can see for bringing it up is because these people didn't 
really know what they were and God was telling them to be prepared for 
seasonal changes.

> Gen. 9 does NOT claim that 
> there were no rainbows before the Flood, only that from that point, we
> should consider the rainbow to be a sign of the covenant between God and
> humanity. 

Granted, though the language of "setting" it in the sky does kind of hint that 
there hadn't been one before.

> The "mist" (if that is indeed what "ed" means) mentioned in Gen. 
> 2 reffers to the primeveal state of the Garden of Eden, NOT to the whole
> period up to the Flood. 

Actually, it does say there was no rain but rather the mist (or whatever it 
was), and nothing between then and chapter 6 says otherwise, so unless you 
have some textual evidence of a change from that to rain, it's reasonable to 
conclude that it did in fact continue that way until the Flood.  I see no 
basis in the text for your conclusion about this.

> And as far as eating meat - Gen. does not say that 
> people did not eat meat before the Flood, only that God now regulated how
> meat is to be eaten.

Once again, I think you're pulling this in out of left field.  2:16 says the 
man was to eat plants, and nothing between there and chapter 9 contradicts 
that principle.  Verse 3 says "Every moving thing that lives shall be food 
for you; and as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything." (RSV)  
This suggests that eating meat is a new thing: just as I had already given 
you plants to eat, now I give you meat, as well.  And the only way this is 
"regulated" there is, don't eat meat with the blood in it.  Not much in the 
way of regulation.  The clear implication is that eating meat is a novel 
idea.

Bear in mind that I'm not a "young-earth" creationist.  But I'm afraid your 
objections above don't stand up to scrutiny of the text before us.

> Yigal Levin
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Steve Miller" <smille10 at sbcglobal.net>
>
> >> > ... I think C14 dating is accurate up until Noah's flood, but not
> >> > before
> >> > that.
> >>
> >> OK. So if I find you a tree ring which is C14 dated to soon after your
> >> date for the flood and which is clearly (even allowing for some possible
> >> multiple rings per year) from when the tree was several hundred years
> >> old, would you accept that as evidence that that tree had been growing
> >> since before the flood?
> >
> > Thanks, Peter, for the great question. I would consider that tree ring by
> > itself to be very weak evidence that the tree had survived the flood:
> > 1) If there is only one such specimen, it could be an anomaly.
> > 2) If there are 3 such specimens from different locations, then to me it
> > means, more likely, that C14 dating stops being accurate some time before
> > the flood. We know C14 dating is accurate to 500 BC. It seems reasonable
> > that the underlying assumption behind it holds up until the time of the
> > flood, but maybe not. Maybe C14 formation rate was changing gradually the
> > whole time while man's life expectancy was changing: from 900 yrs before
> > the
> > flood, to 400 yrs for the 1st generation after the flood, down to 70
> > years at least by the time of Moses.
> > 3) If the tree ring had no rings in the center, then I would take that as
> > strong evidence that the tree had survived the flood, because there were
> > no
> > seasons before the flood. Apparently the olive tree, whose branch the
> > dove brought back to Noah, survived.
> > 4) The reason I am sure that all the radioactive dating methods
> > assumptions
> > fail before the flood is because the Bible tells us that the earth's
> > atmosphere changed after the flood. i.e.
> > a. no rainbows before flood, but after.
> > b. no seasons before flood, but after.
> > c. man not allowed to eat meat before flood, but after. (necessitated by
> > winter)
> > d. before flood, a mist watered the earth. After flood, rain.
> > e. man's life span was rather constant 900 years before flood. Went down
> > rapidly after flood.
> >
> > Are there any such tree rings dated to ~ B.C. 2350?
> >
> > -Steve Miller,
> > Detroit
> >
> >
> >
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-- 
Dave Washburn
http://www.nyx.net/~dwashbur
Fame is fleeing, as good old Whatsisname used to say.



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