Since I’m on the topic of Noah’s Ark and all the urban legends surrounding it being found, I might as well talk about all the creative fiction that gets added to the Noah and the ark story to help it make sense. Fundagelicals take the story as literally true, and that leads to questions. If you have ever taught Sunday school, then you know children ask questions. How did he get all the animals on the ark? How come the animals didn’t eat each other? How did they feed all the animals? If fish live in water what happened to them during the flood? Were dinosaurs on the ark? Did the unicorns really miss their ride on the ark because they were playing silly unicorn games? Fundagelicals have to come up with creative answers to help their literal narrative make sense.
Dinosaurs are a problem for Fundagelicals. As young-earth creationists, they claim humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time. So, that must mean Noah took dinosaurs on the ark. Ken Ham at the Ark Encounter shows cute little pet dinosaurs on the ark with the lions and tigers and bears oh my. What happened to the dinosaurs after the flood? Jack Chick has the answer to that; they were hunted to extinction. Ken Ham goes off into a fictional La-La land doubling down on the claim that dinosaurs and people lived at the same time in a nifty little diorama showing a scene from the corrupt pre-flood world in which humans and dinosaurs fight together in gladiatorial combat in giant arenas.
I must have missed those verses in 2 Hesitations. It’s hard to take Fundagelical seriously when they defend the literal truth of the Bible when they assert such extra-biblical creative fiction like this.
Ham adds more creative fiction when he explains unicorns as a kind of rhinoceros. He also includes elaborate systems for food, water, and waste management to explain how eight people took care of so many animals. These explanations are presented as possible maybes since we have no evidence that any of this ever existed. Ham hedges his claims by saying that we may not know exactly how all the animals survived, but we know they did because the Bible says so.
When I think about the millions of dollars that went into the Ark Encounter and the millions of dollars that flow into Christian organizations like The Institute for Creation Research, I shake my head at the waste. The belief in a literal flood didn’t exist before the Fundamentalist. The ancient Jews thought of it as a story, the early Christians thought of it as a story, and it wasn’t until the early 1900’s that a sect of Christians demanded the story to be taken literally. Now a little over 100 years later, they spend millions of dollars to “prove” they are right.
How about we go back to the way the story was traditionally understood, stop wasting our resources on perpetrating a myth, and stop with the creative re-write of reality to bend it to the Fundagelical narrative. In other words, how about the truth? I know I’m going a bit rogue when I think Christians should be committed to the truth.
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