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Noah's FloodNoah's Flood - What does the Evidence Say?

Why a  discussion of Noah's Flood on an Evolution/Creation site?  Many YEC creationists believe that geological formations, such as the Grand Canyon, are explained by Noah's flood, therefore not requiring the Earth to be old as required by evolutionists.  Since this is an alternate explanation to this aspect of evolution, it seems appropriate to discuss it.

See also Young Earth Evidence, Grand Canyon, Mt. St. Helens (video review)



General information

According to the Biblical Genesis, a great flood engulfed the Earth.  Noah and his family survived the flood by building an ark and loading animals of every type onto it.  There they rode out the flood for about a year until the waters receded.  According to many Bible scholars, such as Archbishop Ussher, the flood occurred about 2348 BC.  More>>

Epic's Note: Just about every major point of the Noah's ark story is in stark contrast with the observable world and science as we know it. A world wide flood would leave massive amounts of geological evidence behind; and it just doesn't exist.
Every ancient culture had its history and its mythology. When an ancient culture records stories about talking snakes, magic fruit, people living inside of giant fish, and gathering representative members of every species of animal and living on a boat for almost a year, one should automatically realize that they were recording their mythology and not their history.  One might argue that this mythology was inspired by God in order to relay important messages about God, however, the fact that anyone would respond to the above statement with anything other than, "Well duh, of course they were recording their mythology and not their literal history" is frankly mind boggling.

More Info

Was Noah's Flood Global or Local?

Some biblical scholars believe that the flood was local and not global and that this is supported by the Bible.  They believe that the idea of a global flood is a misinterpretation of the original Hebrew of the Old Testament.  This has important implications.

  • No need to explain where the water came from and where it went after the flood.
  • Noah only needed to bring the animals necessary to repopulate the local region.
  • Explains why other cultures, such as the Egyptians, didn't note the flood in their historical records.

A local flood isn't discussed here because it would have only minor implications as to our origins and the geology of the Earth.  However, the idea of a global flood has significant implications about our understanding of geology and origins and therefore is discussed.

For those who are interested, here are some other articles about this topic

Evidence For

The Bible.  Some consider this an inerrant source and that it describes the flood as a historical fact.

Creationists geologists, such as Dr. Steve Austin, believe that the flood caused the Grand Canyon, coal deposits, etc.  See Steve Austin, Grand Canyon, Mount St. Helens for a discussion of these claims.

Do we live on a planet that was
specially created for life?

  • Does the size relationship between the Sun and Moon make the Earth unique for scientific exploration?

  • Is the Earth located in the “sweet” spot of the galaxy?

Are these claims valid or pseudoscientific nonsense?

These claims and others are explored in the
"The Privileged Planet"

Other articles about the evidence for a Global Flood:

Evidence Against

The Great Pyramid of Cheops was built about 2589-2566 BC, about  230 years before the flood, yet it has no water marks on it.  The Djoser Step Pyramid at Saqqara, Egypt, built about 2630 BC doesn't show any signs of having been under water.  Likewise for many other ancient structures.  But even more importantly, the Egyptians have continuous historical records for hundreds of years before and after the time of the flood that make no mention of a great flood.  This shows that they were not only not aware of a global flood, they certainly were not greatly affected by one.  Outside of the Bible, there is no historical or physical evidence that would place a worldwide flood during the time period specified by the Bible for the great flood.

Where did the water needed for the flood come from?  Where did it go?  The atmosphere only holds enough moisture to account for about an inch of water worldwide.  To cover even Mount Ararat, where Noah's Ark supposedly landed after the flood, in 40 days would require over 400 feet of water per day.  That's not 400 inches, but 400 feet a day.  And Everest would require 725 feet per day - that's 30 feet of water per hour!  Some claim that the mountains didn't exist before the flood.  But even Bible speaks of great mountains in the time before the flood.  Were these great mountains mentioned in the Bible only a few feet high?

Some propose a massive vapor canopy existed in the times before the flood.  But, the pressure at the base of such a canopy would be so high that it would need to have a temperature of over 500 degrees Fahrenheit.  Any cooler and it would come down as rain.


How much water would it take?

The total volume of water on Earth is about 1.4 billion cubic kilometers  www.space.com, USGS.gov

Volume of a sphere = 4/3 r3 where r=radius

Radius of Earth = 6,378.15 Kilometers

Height of Mt. Everest = 8.85 Kilometers

The volume of water needed to cover Earth to the height of Mt. Everest is approximately the difference in volume of a sphere needed to encompass Mt. Everest and the volume of a sphere the size of the Earth.

Volume of  a sphere encompassing the Earth at sea level
= 4/3 (6,378.15 KM)3 = 1,086,825,918,019 KM3

Volume of a sphere encompassing Mt. Everest
= 4/3 (6,378.15 + 8.85 KM)3 = 1,091,388,460,971 KM3

The Difference = 4,530,488,766 KM3

Notice that this is more than 3 TIMES the amount of water presently on Earth.


Was Noah's Flood just a re-telling of the Gilgamesh Epic? This Babylonian story contains many of the same elements of Noah's story (A giant flood, a single man singled out by the gods to saved from the flood, a giant boat, saving his family and animals by riding out the flood on the boat, boat resting on a mountain side, and releasing a dove.  The Gilgamesh Epic dates to 2000 B.C., several hundred years before Noah's Flood supposedly took place according to the Bible.
More info: The Flood Myth: Babylonian Origins

Was the flood water fresh or salty?  If it were freshwater, then the saltwater fish would have died, but if it were saltwater, then the freshwater fish would have died.

Some creationists claim that the great mountains were formed after the flood, therefore, not much water was needed.   However, this would mean that the mountains formed VERY rapidly after the flood.  Surely somebody would have noticed these mountains rapidly growing out of the ground.  Yet, there are no historical records indicating that this happened.  What pushed them up?  What made them stop?  Even the Bible contradicts this explanation by stating that great mountains existed in the times before Noah.  Are we to believe that these great mountains mentioned in the Bible were only a few feet high?

Grab your roots and run with me! Some Flood proponents claim that the flood is responsible for the fossil record.  But the fossils are sorted in the Geologic Column with the simpler creatures on bottom and more complex creatures higher up.  Flood proponents explain that they are sorted this way because the larger more intelligent animals were able to make it to higher ground before dying.  But this doesn't fit the facts.  Did plants pull up their roots and climb to higher ground?   Remember, they are sorted in the geologic record as well.  Shouldn't there have been some sick or lame humans who were stuck at lowers levels?  Wouldn't elephants, rhinoceroses, and dinosaurs all be together?  Also, the water was being added at a tremendous rate.  This churning would have completely jumbled the bodies so that they would have been thoroughly mixed.  Some claim the waters were calm, but if that were the case then the heavier larger creatures should have sunk to the bottom.  Neither scenario is supported by the physical evidence.  What is found is a sorting from simple to complex creatures, not a sorting by size, not completely mixed, and not a sorting by mobility.

What do other's say?

Do Sea Shell Fossils on Mt. Everest Prove Noah's Flood?

Creationist View
Sea shell fossils found on Mt. Everest prove that it was once covered by water.  This proves that a great flood occurred.

Evolutionist View
Sea shell fossils found on Mt. Everest only show that is was once under water.  Millions of years ago the area of Mt. Everest at sea level.  The Himalayas were formed by the shifting of the tectonic plates which forced the ground upwards.

Want to learn more?

Has Noah's Ark Been Found?

Apparently first seen by a local Kurdish farmer following an earthquake in May 1948, the world’s attention was drawn to this streamlined boat-shape by the publication of an aerial photograph, taken by a Turkish Air Force pilot, in Australian Pix magazine on July 9, 1960 and American Life magazine on September 5, 1960. See full article and criticisms: http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v14/i4/report.asp

Is the Noah's Ark sighting a hoax?

More Info

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2005-12-04 Anonymous, Young Earth Creationist, wrote
So So, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Biased to Evolution

2006-01-06 Anonymous, Old Earth Creationist who believes in a global flood, wrote
So So, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Fair and Balanced
More critical analysis of both sides of the arguments; conclusion is unclear when a firm one is necessary

2006-02-16 E, Theistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Fair and Balanced

2006-02-26 George, Young Earth Creationist, wrote
Interesting, Factual, Biased to Creation/ID

2006-02-27 Anonymous, Theistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, Factual, Fair and Balanced
The facts are biased towards evolution.

2006-03-08 Anonymous, Young Earth Creationist, wrote
So So
fist off, after millions of years of weathering, are they trying to tell me that the sea shells are still up thier? what about all the wind erosion, if earth is billions of years old dont you think the sea shells would be eroded by now?

2006-03-28 Anonymous, Atheistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, Factual, Fair and Balanced

2006-03-28 Anonymous, Theistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Fair and Balanced

2006-04-04 Anonymous, Theistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Biased to Evolution

2006-04-05 16:26:46 Anonymous, Young Earth Creationist, wrote
Interesting, Factual
I have yet to see a source that takes both views into consideration when applying a theory to the evidence. Evolutionists say creation science is not really science because it draws on God to explain the theory. Then they turn around and say they do not refute the existence of God. yeah right.

2006-04-17 Anonymous, Old Earth Creationist, wrote
Interesting, Factual, Fair and Balanced

2006-05-06 Justin Macalintal, Atheistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Biased to Evolution
In reply to:
2006-04-05 16:26:46 Anonymous, Young Earth Creationist
Quote:"I have yet to see a source that takes both views into consideration when applying a theory to the evidence."

Yes, me too.

"Evolutionists say creation science is not really science because it draws on God to explain the theory. Then they turn around and say they do not refute the existence of God. yeah right."

What the evolutionists mean by that is not exactly because creationists draw from God their claims. What they are saying is that there is lack of real hard evidence. There is no evidence for God, in a scientific perspective, and arguments of his existence are at most, wishful thinking. They do not refute the existence of God because they can't refute the existence of God, because the idea of God is purely philosophical. I can claim that I believe in the big Lord of Onions, yet as it is purely conceptual, not fact, science can't refute it, so I can claim that the Lord of Onions exist, yet that doesn't mean I'm right.

In reply to:
2006-03-08 Anonymous, Young Earth Creationist
Quote:"fist off, after millions of years of weathering, are they trying to tell me that the sea shells are still up thier? what about all the wind erosion, if earth is billions of years old dont you think the sea shells would be eroded by now?"

The process of mountain formation is very slow. The fact that marine fossils found on top very tall mountains, does not suggest that the Earth is once covered by a great flood. Dead animals sink to the bottom of the sea in sediment and become fossilized after millions of years, and during this time, through geological processes (happening even now) those seabeds rose up and became the peaks of mountains of today. Winds at higher latitudes are not as strong as they are closer to the ground, and because mountains are composed usually of hard sedimentary rocks, wind erosion does not affect it that much. If what you are claiming is true, then we wouldn't have any mountains today.

2006-05-09 Heidi H. Vangen wrote
My dear fellow man!

I can't seem to find the authors name on this page. Are you not proud of your work? Is it hard to stand by your work? Or are you afraid of having to defend your work in person?
This page clearly favorises the evolution view of life on earth. Have you ever proved evolution to be true? If so, why don't you claim the reward Mr. Hovind wants to give he/she who can prove evolution to be the truth? Or is it so that you can not prove evolution to be the truth? If so, your theory is based on what you choose to BELIEVE and then it is NOT science - it is religion! What is it that makes your religion more worth than mine?? Why is it more correct to believe in the religion of evolution than to believe what the Bible says?? You can not prove that you are right! You are just looking for possible ways to attact what others believe! You poor thing.
I will pray for you. Remember the Bible says one day everyone shall bow down and admit Jesus is the one and only tru God. Halleluja! :)

bestwishes from Heidi

epicidiot reply: Actually, if you look hard enough, my name can be found on my site.  But, whether or not you know my name does not have any bearing on whether or not what I write is true or false.  What makes what I believe different from Creationism is that it is based on physical evidence, not superstitious (and rather preposterous) stories written by ancient man.  Even if there was no theory of evolution and man had no idea of how he came about, the evidence clearly shows that the Biblical stories are not literally true.  Evolution is not required to show that these stories are not factual.  They may be messages and lessons from God (but that's another topic), but they are clearly not literal history.

Oh yeah, Mr. Hovind's challenge is bogus in that to claim it, one would have to prove things that evolutionists do not claim to prove or necessarily even believe.  It's just another Creationist ruse to dupe the naive.  Consider yourself duped.

2006-05-20 Old Earth Creationist wrote
So So, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Biased to Evolution

2006-08-24 Dusty, Young Earth Creationist, wrote
Interesting, Bogus, Biased to Evolution
I disagree with many of your statements. The bible does not contradict itself in regards to mountains. The amount of water required assumes that the height of Mount everest was originally that tall.
When we start discussing things such as this we have to realize that if there was a flood, the earth would have been a lot more different than now. In fact the biblical interpretation supports scientific knowelege today.
Before the flood, there wouldn't have been as much change in elevation as there is now. There would have been mountains, since the bible says there were, but they would have been a lot shorter and there wouldn't have been many oceans at the time. Most of the water would have been underground.
According to the Bible, "The springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened." (Genesis 7:11) When it refers to the "great deep" it is refering to water bursting out of underground springs. Based on your statement that there is 1.4 billion cubic kilometers, that would have been a lot of pressure breaking the earth's crust. This force could have caused the techtonic plates to move around like it does today and simulteneously cause the mountains to grow at a very rapid rate. After the flood occured and the water were to die down, most likely the environment would have changed drastically and the volcanoes would still be around and mountains would still be forming. This sudden change in the environment could have killed off the dinosaurs as well as created the line of stuff found accross the earth right after the dinosaur bones cease to exist.
This theory not only explains how the flood occured, but how dinosaurs died as well as how so many fossils were preserved( A gigantic flood with tons of dirt and water covering you instantly would result in a fossil).
And before you comment that the dinosaurs were millions of years old and the flood occured thousands of years ago I need to point out that when it comes to carbon dating and any other form of dating, no one is sure of the exact rate of decay nor that the rate of decay will necessarily state constant, so the statement about how old the dinosaurs are is void.

epicidiot reply: Even if one assumes that dinosaurs were killed by the flood, a global flood does NOT explain the sorting of the fossils in the geologic column.  How did both salt water and fresh water fish survive in the same flood water?  How come the Egyptians and other ancient cultures didn't notice the flood?  Where the water came from is only but one of the major problems with the flood story.

2006-08-31 wrote

2006-10-12 14:07:02 Young Earth Creationist wrote
Interesting, Factual, Biased to Creation/ID

2006-10-19 wrote
If there was a great flood a few thousand years ago that covered all of the mountains that will raise a very serious question: Where is all the flood debris ? Obviously, huge masses of floating plant materials would have been distributed around the world and as the waters receded, these materials would have been deposited on the highest peaks that first emerged from the floodwaters. Also, since there was no doubt HUGE turbulences/currents during such an event plant material from all regions would have been distributed all over the earth. Now, why don't we find the highest mountains covered with flood debris somewhere in the world ? Also, if you found that debris, you would expect to find, for example, tropical plant debris in the Himalayas. Arguments that it just rotted away over the years simply won't hold water as the highest peaks would preserve the debris in permafrost (Snowcap glaciers). Incidently, the frozen mammoths in Siberia can be easily explained by events presently occurring in Siberia and all of the plant matter found frozen with the mammoths is native to that area and still survives there to this day

2006-10-24 Other an intreged tenager whom has read indepthly on all of the above (eg. young earth ceationts, old earth creationists, thesitic Evoluionist, Athestic Evoulionins,) and genneraly understands the reasoning behind each, is a christian but not the shove it down your throut crazy fantics who see no room to debate any fundemnatl apologictics (appologizies for spelling, i am slightly deslixic), wrote
Interesting, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Biased to Evolution
for some of the articale, espically the "evidence against" it seems like you are defeating a straw man, yes , it is possible to find out when the flood happened through genoliges in the bilbe, if you find every single one and use it for calculaion, (thouhg it does mention that there where varioius other children but does not list them), but it is so incredibblu boring that anyone reading them would be lulled to sleep. But according to one line of thinking, the eygyptions, could not have been around at the time of the flood, becuse they would have been desendents of one of noahs children (eg. shem, hem, and some other guy), But then some one who is affende by this would respond by, carbon dating tecnis and the other kinds, but then enteries into a debate on the valdiity of certian dating technices. The cannopy therory has been refuted by creationits too under the same ground as you stated.

but this has been a fasintaing aticale

oh, on another note, when evoultionits say that people can't prove Gods exsitsnce, they can't disprove him either

and for those who say, you assume there is a God, some assume there isn't

and it is science to study, this world of chance, or creaion, or semmingly both....



2006-10-31 Atheistic Evolutionist wrote
Interesting, Factual, Fair and Balanced

2007-01-07 Why is there even a debate?, Atheistic Evolutionist, wrote
Interesting, I'm not sure of the accuracy, Biased to Evolution
Overall, a well written article. The difficulty facing many writers covering this issue is staying ahead of the facts and also giving adequate coverage to decenting opinions. It is frightening that now a private matter is making headway onto a national stage and forcing scientist to waste valuable time in having to "reprove" obvious facts about our world. I understand how important beliefs are to people. But if we need to teach every theory, no matter how outlandish, what are we going to accomplish? Should we force the teachings of the Hundu faith? If we solely use the bible...which version? Which translation for that matter? In all honesty, I can use the bible and various religious texts to justicify all matters of human behavior no matter how debased. Do we as a people truely want to limit ourselves to a text that may or may not been created by God? I do have a questions for, I guess the term I'm looking for, "True Believers". I am being serious about this...Is masturbating a crime in God's eyes? What I understand about religious teachings is that we are supposed to procreate. I spent months out to sea serving in the United States Navy. Am I a sinner for breaking down and maturbating? Why would God make it so enjoyable. If we are made in God's image, can we assume he has the same innsecuritied snd shortcommings as us? Why does he make innocent people suffer? Why is did he allow Africa to be turned into a mess in the name of colonialism? If anyone can answer these questions, hell, I'll take another look at evolution. As it stands, it's just common sense. I guess I should wait for God to send his wrath on this sailor.



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