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The Flood is Not a Fairy Tale

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Round 1
Published:
Thank you Virtuoso for accepting this debate.

There are many reasons why the Global Flood, described in Genesis, can be shown to have been a true historical event.

1. Flood Legends
There are somewhere between 300 to 500 Flood legends worldwide. Some of these include Hawaiian, Tanzanian, Chinese, Nordic, Aztec, Greek, Babylonian and many other civilizations had global flood legends. If evolution is true then why all these global flood legends? More interestingly, why are there civilizations that live in deserts or up in mountains that have these global flood legends?

2. Fossilized Animals

Special conditions are required to fossilize in the first place. It takes rapid burial so that the animal is preserved otherwise it will rot or be eaten by scavengers. This rapidity is seen with evidence of fossilized animals shown to be eating or giving birth.


3. Fossilized Trees

Trees have been found either upright or upside down through several layers that according to evolution represent millions of years.

4. Rock Layers

These have been found to have been deposited at the same time. These layers, however, are not just local, but worldwide. One example is the Tapeats Sandstone that is the basement rock of the Grand Canyon. It is also found in Wisconsin, Israel and Libya.

5. Multiple Flat Layers in the Grand Canyon

The Coconino Sandstone is right on top of the Hermit Formation without any indication of a layer separating them as would happen if five million years took place between them (as evolution suggests). No, these layers had to be laid out rapidly in a short time.

6. Bent Rock Layers

Obviously these bent rocks that do not show any signs of being broken had to be laid and bent before the layer could dry out.

These are some evidences for the Flood. If Con has other things he would like to add (like animals on the ark or the question about oxygen) I would be glad to have those added to the debate.

Published:
I want to begin by welcoming you to the site. I hope that you enjoy this debate and stick around for more! My opening case will be quite lengthy and will be attacked from multiple angles.

I. Definitions

Let’s begin by defining our terms. I will define “fairy tale” as a mythical story. In order for Pro to win this debate, he needs to show that the Biblical flood was global and happened less than 4,000 years ago. In order for me to win this debate, I have to show that the Biblical flood did not happen.

II. Feasibility of the Ark

The Bible describes the Ark as being 300 cubits long, 50 cubits wide, and 30 cubits high, and 3 floors (Gen 6:15). In modern calculations, that’s about 510 feet long, or about a football field and a half. Additionally, Noah was to take in 2 kinds of unclean animal and 7 kinds of clean animals. Finally, Noah and his cargo would be on the ark for about a full year (most commentators say 370 days. To be generous, I will calculate 340 days). With that in mind, let’s make some basic calculations.

A. Storage required for food

To illustrate how much storage for food would be required, let’s just take a look at the elephant. According to the National Elephant Center, elephants eat between 200-600 pounds of food a day [1]. So with 2 elephants eating 200 pounds of food per day that is equal to 400 pounds of food each day for the elephants. That’s 136,000 pounds of food for just two elephants for a 340-day journey. Where and how is Noah storing all that food?

B. Storage required for water

Answers in Genesis estimates that there were about 7,000 animals on the ark [2]. Let’s assume that each animal was given 1 gallon of water per day. This means that Noah would use up 7,000 pounds of water per day, or 2,380,000 gallons of water for the 340-day journey. One gallon of water weighs about 8-pounds [3], so if we multiply 2,380,000 by 8, Noah would need to find room for 19,040,000 pound of water.
It seems that this story is quite unfeasible, but it gets worse.

III. Surviving the flood

If a flood like the story of Noah actually happened, then nothing would have survived. Indeed, the Bible makes it clear that any creature that was not on the ark perished (Gen 7:23). This posts huge problems.

A. Marine survival  

Where was Noah storing all those marine animals? Remember, anything that was NOT on the ark died, so this would include marine species. Moreover, how did fresh water animals survive in the salt water? If that’s not bad enough, it gets worse.

Creationist organizations like Answers in Genesis maintain that the world’s continents were broken up during Noah’s flood [4]. Additionally, they argue that the Grand Canyon [5] and most of the geological features we see today were made during the Flood.

This would have created a ridiculous amount of heat and energy that would have wiped out all marine species. The National Center for Science Education calculates that such energy would have generated 3.65 octillion calories, enough to raise the temperature of the oceans to more than 2700 C! [6]

B. Functional extinction and genetics
A flood that reduced all species to 2 or 7 individuals would have left a noticeable trace in the genetic record. Whenever a population is severely reduced, it forms a genetic bottleneck. We can easily see this in species today and can even calculate roughly when this bottleneck occurred and how many individuals remained. For example, the African Cheetahs experienced a bottleneck effect roughly 10,000 years ago [7]. The Ashkenazi Jewish population also suffered a bottleneck, which is why there is a high rate of genetic disorders within the Ashkenazi Jewish community [8].

What then would have happened if a species population would have been reduced to 2 individuals? Well, for one thing, the species would effectively be extinct as it would be incredibly difficult to rebound the population when it’s reduced to such a low number. Finally, once they’re let off the ark, the predators would have gone after most of the remaining prey. Once one of the pairs were killed and eaten, there would be no way for the species to survive.
That said, let’s dig even further.  

IV. History and Archaeology

There is much historical and archaeological evidence that contradicts a global flood.

A. When did the Flood Happen?

 
When exactly did this flood happen? It depends on who you ask. This will become important later. According to Creation Ministry International, the flood happened 2304 BC ± 11 years [9]. Answers in Genesis says it happened in 2348 BCE [10] and another article in Answers in Genesis says it happened in 2500 BCE [11], and finally the Institute for Creation Research says that it happened in 2472 BCE [12]. This means that the earliest and latest date is off by nearly 200 years. Let’s be generous and take the average of these dates which means the flood happened in the year 2406 BCE. This will be my starting point.
 
B. Population Rebound
 

So how did the post-flood population rebound so quickly without any hint of a global flood? According to Answers in Genesis [see source 11], the population doubled every 150 years. So, in 2406 BCE, we have 8 people, in 2256 BCE we have 16 people, and in 2106 we have a total of 32 people and so forth to the present age. This presents monumental challenges as we have archeological and recorded history dating well before those dates.

 

C. The Pyramids
 
The first pyramid of Egypt, the Step Pyramid of Djoser, is traditionally dated to about 4700 years ago [13], well before the flood was supposed to begin. How does AiG reconcile this date? In one of their articles, they say that the more “realistic” date would be 1875 BCE [14]. That’s 531 years after the flood. So, what’s the global population then? If we take AiG’s population calculation, that’s less than 48 people alive at that time frame. Obviously, something does not add up.
 
How do they reconcile this? They really don’t nor do they really even try. The closest I could come up with is David Wright’s article: “Were There Enough People to Build the Pyramids,” [15] he states “According to Archbishop James Ussher’s biblical chronology, the Tower of Babel was about 2250 BC. So that gives a window of about 150–250 years before Egypt began constructing the pyramids.” But 2250 is only 156 years after the flood. According to AiG’s calculation, that means the global population at that time would be less than 20!!
 
Wright also states: “If we assume that Mizraim left Babel with a family of eight children (four boys and four girls), and if each couple averaged eight children every thirty years (which is probably quite conservative), in 150 years he could easily have had nearly 30,000 descendants. In 250 years, the population could explode to well over one million.”
 
This clearly contradicts AiG’s earlier estimate that the population doubles every 150 years. Instead, Wright has to double the population every 15 years. Even still, 30,000 people is still not enough to build the pyramids. In contrast, the Milpas, CA has a population of over 70,000 people [16]. That means Milpas has a greater population than the entire world did at that time.
 
To get around this, Wright gives three possibly solutions:
 
1.     The Egyptians likely had knowledge of building pyramids from the Tower of Babel.
2.     They surely had many labor-saving technologies (cranes, hoists, etc.).
3.     The Egyptians could have hired outside help or used slave labor (as is evidenced by the time of Joseph, Genesis 37–40), or both.
 
Solution 1 is fails because as I shown, the global population would barely be 60 people. Hardly enough to build even the Tower of Babel. Solution 2 also fails because how did they get these cranes and hoists? Someone has to build them, and they have to come from somewhere. Someone also needs to cook the food, grow the food, gather the materials, and many other things that make this unlikely. Finally, solution 3 fails because the global population is only about 60.
 
D. Other historical buildings
 

The pyramids aren’t the only problem. There are dozens and dozens of building that pre-date even the flood [17], even buildings in the Americas. It’s hard to imagine these buildings being built so quickly after the flood.

V. Conclusion 

I believe I have thoroughly demonstrated that the Genesis flood myth is a fairy tale. There are far too many problems with the story that it is hard to know where to begin. I think I have done a decent job and showing from multiple angels why it could not have happened. 

 
VI.Sources



Round 2
Published:
Very good points 
First I want to address that Con has not rebutted any of my above statements, so I hope he does so in the next round.

1. Storage of Food and Water
The calculation that Con has given for elephants is for the adults. However, who said that Noah took adult animals with him. Actually it would make more sense to take the young elephants for several reasons: 1. Less weight, 2. Less food and 3. Less space occupied. Another possibility is that the animals were not only young, but also hibernated or slept for the whole trip or a great part of the trip since the ark would have been warm and dark.

2. Marine Animals
I don't know what version Con is using, but Gen. 7:23 clearly states that the animals that died were land dwelling animals and humans. Obviously, many marine animals probably survived (or maybe just two of each kind as well, but can't be dogmatic), however, the fossil graveyards also show that many did not survive.

3. Genetic Bottleneck
My answer is that the two dogs, for example, did not have to be two poodles, but could have been two different races of dogs, giving way to a litter of diversity.

4. Population

Con did not read the article from Answers in Genesis carefully. They used the word "assume" before they made the statement talking about the population doubling. However, the article is only saying that if you double the population every 150 years you can get billions of people today. Now let us look at what the Bible teaches In Genesis 10 about the population following the Flood. We know that eight people got off the ark after the Flood. The Bible does tell us that the total of sons for Shem, Ham and Japheth were sixteen. Now this would be double from what came off the ark, however, the Bible doesn't mention the daughters that the sons of Noah had to have so that Noah's grandsons could marry their cousins. Definitely there had to have been at least another sixteen. So we went from eight to thirty-two people in less than one hundred years. Now the Bible also tells us about how many sons each of the grandsons of Noah had. Each grandson mentioned had between three to five sons. If we give the same number of daughters to each family we get another three to five girls. Let us say that each grandson had four sons and three daughters each. There are sixteen grandsons, multiply that by seven and you have one hundred and twelve in about over one hundred fifty years. So in about one hundred and fifty years it went from eight people to one hundred and twelve. Then that generation would have produced at least another 784 people and then they would have produced 5,488 people and by the time of the Tower of Babel there would have been at least 38,416 people. You could have a couple thousand people for every major language group on earth.

5. Pyramids
So looking at the way the Bible shows us the mass production of people after the Flood 500 years after the Flood you would have large populations. You could have about 2 million people living on earth

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