Review by Greg Neyman
First Published 2006
In an article on the Creation, Dinosaurs and the Flood website,
young earth creation science advocate Charlie Liebert argues that
God's judgment against the world could not have been carried out
with a local flood.1
Liebert claims a local flood in the Mesopotamian region of the Middle East would not fulfill God's judgment. First, not all old earth creationists point to Mesopotamia. The area of Iraq could not hold the water of a large flood...you need a basin. Research is currently being done to identify this basin, and one promising possible location has been identified.
The basis of Liebert's claim is that God's declaration to destroy man and beast could not be fulfilled in a local flood. One must remember, however, that mankind prior to the Tower of Babel spoke one language, and had a tendency to live in the same region. Thus, all that was needed was for that region to be flooded. A global flood was unnecessary.
But what about the animals? God did say he would destroy the animals too. Dr. Hugh Ross of Reasons to Believe thinks this refers to the animals associated with mankind. Mankind had corrupted even the beasts of the earth that were with him. Animals outside of man's sphere of influence did not have to be destroyed, and thus again, there was no need to flood the entire planet.
There is no problem, with the Hebrew language, to believe that God intended a "universal" flood. Everything that mankind had and owned, everything that mankind had influenced, could be destroyed with a local flood, that was "universal" in its effect.
What about the ark being 15 cubits above the mountains? This was probably the "draft" of the ark. Since it floated in the middle of this large flood, with no land in sight, and did not "bump" into any mountains under the water, then Noah would claim that the earth was covered at least to this depth. When Noah says "ALL" the earth was flooded, from his perspective on the ark, with no land in sight, ALL of the land associated with man was indeed flooded.
Liebert mentions that in a local flood, the people could have fled to another region. However, if Noah had done this, with the way man grouped together prior to Babel, others would have followed, and escaped the flood as well.
The local flood was indeed a universal judgment against mankind...everyone but Noah and his family died. Thus, you can interpret the Bible literally, and still believe in a local flood, and an old earth.
1 God's Judgement in the Flood, published on the web at www.sixdaycreation.com/facts/flood/nov2.html
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