“And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered. Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains were covered.”
GENESIS 7:19, 20
Many Christians today claim that the Flood of Noah’s time was only a local flood. Generally, these people want a local flood because they have accepted the evolutionary history of the earth, interpreting the fossils under our feet as the history of the sequential appearance of life over millions of years.
Scientists, at one time, understood the fossils to be mostly the result of the great Flood. Those who now accept the evolutionary millions of years of gradual accumulation of fossils have, in their way of thinking, explained away the evidence for the global Flood. Hence, many Christians compromise and insist on a local flood. Secularists deny the possibility of a worldwide flood at all. If they would think from a biblical perspective, they would see the abundance of evidence for the Flood. As someone once quipped, “I wouldn’t have seen it, if I hadn’t believed it.”
Those who accept the evolutionary timeframe, also rob Adam’s fall of its serious consequences. They put fossils, which testify of disease, suffering and death, before Adam and Eve sinned and brought death and suffering into the world. Such a scenario makes God’s description of His finished creation, “It was very good”, null. In doing this they also undermine the meaning of Christ’s death and resurrection.
If the Flood were local, why did Noah have to build an Ark? He could walked to the other side of the mountains and escaped!
More importantly, if the Flood were local people who did not happen to beliving in the vicinity would not have been affected by it. They would have escaped God’s judgment on sin. Jesus said, in MATTHEW 24:37 - 39, that the Flood killed every person not on the Ark. And what did Christ mean when He likened the coming world judgment to the judgment of all men in the days of Noah? (MATT. 24:37 - 39) In 2 PETER 3:5 - 7, the coming judgment by fire is likened to the former judgment by water in Noah’s Flood. A partial judgment in Noah’s day, would mean a partial judgment to come.
If the Flood were only local, how could the waters rise to twenty feet above the mountains, as stated GENESIS 7:20? Water seeks its own level. It could not rise to cover the local mountains while leaving the rest of the world untouched.
If the Flood were local, God would have repeatedly broken His promise never to send such a flood again (God put a rainbow in the sky as a covenant between God and man and the animals that He would never repeat such an event). There have been huge “local” floods in recent times (in Bangladesh, for example), but never another global Flood that killed all life on the land.
Sign of Design: Today’s canyons and the like are the consequences, not so much of God’s creative design, but of the forces He unleashed in divine judgment on sin at the time of Noah.
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