ABC:Genesis 9

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Verse 1

TheThinkingAtheist.com claims the Bible is wrong in the following passage, and makes the following comments:[1]

Genesis 9:1 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.

8 people of middle-eastern descent practiced incest to produce over 5,000 of today’s ethnic groups in only a few hundred generations?

Descent

We aren't told they were of middle eastern descent, just that they were descendants of the old antedeluvian society.

Incest?

Technically it wasn't incest by today's standards since they each had lifespans of 900 years (Genesis 5). Incest was only declared wrong by the time of Moses when people had average lifespans of 70 years (Psalms 90:10) and God when the Flood started began reducing the average lifespan to 120 years (Genesis 6:3. Lifespans did not reach this point until about the time of Moses, who lived exactly the 120 years specified. (Deuteronomy 34:7) Incest today is considered wrong, as it should be, because children who grow up with one another as part of the same family should not have sexual relationships.

However, ancient people like Noah's family lived centuries upon centuries and could be born many centuries apart in age from their siblings, old enough by today's standards to be the great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandparents of their brothers and sisters. As Romans 5:13 says, "sin is not imputed when there is no law." Before the time of Moses there was no necessity for a law against incest because such vast lifespans made for very different family units, and incest was thus not wrong in the same way it is today.

Population Growth

See Pre-Flood Longevity

Population growth rates today are above 1% in most of the world's countries[2], and at a 1% growth rate one goes from 2 people to 7 billion in just 2,210 years. Human population growth rate seen today is a strong evidence that the Bible is correct that human civilization is young as the Bible says.

Verse 20

TheThinkingAtheist.com claims the Bible is wrong about the following passage, and makes the following comments:[1]

Genesis 9:20 And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard:
21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.

The only guy worth saving spent his latter days drunk and naked?

NOTE: Much of the biblical flood story was actually plagiarized from "The Epic of Gilgamesh," the mythical Sumerian account of Ut-Napishtim written on stone tablets around 2000 BC. In "The Epic of Gilgamesh, one righteous man was spared from a worldwide flood by building a large boat with a single door and one window. The ark contained a few other human beings plus plant and animal specimens. Rains covered the mountains with water. Birds were sent to find land. The boat landed on a mountain in the middle east. Ut-Napshtim sacrificed an animal as an offering, and the Babylonian gods expressed regret for flooding the earth. Sound familiar?

Noah

First of all, this is a single incident related so it's a bit hasty to conclude this was typical of Noah's life. Even if it was, it might show just how wicked the ancient world was for God to resort to utter destruction of it. Ultimately, the Bible relates the mistakes of its writers to show God alone is good. Unlike the Quran, Biblical authors like Moses, David, and the apostles are actually portrayed as angering God and being punished accordingly. This should be additional evidence God was the author behind the book, since it exists not to glorify men like man-made books such as the Quran, but to glorify God. As such it provides an unusually candid view of the very human failings of the people within it.

Plagiarized?

Actually, early critics of the Bible used to claim the Bible could not be correct when speaking of things like ancient Nineveh, the Hittites, or the Mosaic Law since they weren't known by archaeology. They claimed the law of Moses was too advanced for its time, the Hittites couldn't have existed since they weren't known to archaeology, and a major city like Nineveh should likewise be known to archaeology. However, we have since excavated Nineveh, discovered the Hittite capital, and also found the Law of Hammurabi (as well as other ancient laws).[3]

Now critics, unable to claim the Bible was incorrect about the ancient world, actually claim the reverse, that since ancient proof exists showing the Bible agreed with ancient records, that it must have "plagiarized" them! They apparently will criticize the Bible whether it disagrees with known discoveries or is corroborated by them! Logically, such evidence has actually revealed the last two centuries of critics were wrong in claiming the Bible incorrect about the ancient world. If the world had a shared history like the Flood, one would expect to see it referenced in numerous ancient records and accounts, which is exactly what we see.

What TheThinkingAtheist.com rather dishonestly fails to mention is that not only does the Epic of Gilgamesh mention an ancient Flood with strikingly similar detail to the Bible, but so do similar accounts in dozens of other countries. Numerous Native American tribes have similar flood legends. Australian aboriginal tribes have such legends. So do South American tribes, Chinese sources, African legends, Icelandic legends, and accounts in India, Wales, Russia, Vietnam, and Canada, to name a few. They can even be found in ancient cultures on islands like Fiji and Malaysia![4]

Which is more likely? To think Noah and cultures worldwide all plagiarized from the Epic of Gilgamesh? Or that such an event DID happen and that's the reason all share an ancient, common history found worldwide? What's unusual is that many legends worldwide mention even specific details like which birds were sent out (raven and pigeon), a level of detail that shouldn't exist from sheer coincidence. That degree of commonality exceeds any reasonable concept of coincidence, and is a very strong proof that Genesis is correct such a Flood did occur.

Verse 25

The EvilBible claims a contradiction exists here, and makes the following comments (italicized).[5]

God is just and impartial

ABC:Psalms 92:15 To shew that the Lord is upright: he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.

ABC:Genesis 18:25 That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?

ABC:Deuteronomy 32:4 He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

ABC:Romans 2:11 For there is no respect of persons with God.

ABC:Ezekiel 18:25 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal?

God is unjust and partial

ABC:Genesis 9:25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.

ABC:Exodus 20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

ABC:Romans 9:11-13 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

ABC:Matthew 13:12 For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.

The critic makes some serious mistakes in trying to attribute injustice and partiality to God. First of all, Genesis 9:25 contains something Noah said, not God, and that was because his son had immorally looked at his father's nudity. As a result Noah cursed his younger son. However, even IF that had been something God had said, not Noah, it would not have necessarily shown injustice or partiality since it was a condemnation of an immoral action. Using that as the primary example of God's injustice displays seriously flawed reasoning, as well as carelessness, on the part of the critic.

The critic seems to be arguing that Exodus 20:5 displays partiality because children experience the consequences of their ancestor's decisions to the third and fourth generations. This may well be a reference to disease. God punishes individuals who hate Him with diseases and physical maladies that carry over into their later generations. However, despite this God forgives those who repent, healing their lives and bodies. The critic noticeably does not mention the next verse, Exodus 20:6, which specifically states that God shows mercy to those who love Him and righteously keep His commandments.

In the Mosaic Law, God elsewhere specifically states that children are not to be put to death for the actions of their parents, or parents for what their children have done, but punishment should be based upon their individual actions. Therefore, while God may execute forms of punishment on later generations through disease, execution was to occur only when an individual had done that which was clearly evil.

ABC:Deuteronomy 24:16 The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.

ABC:2 Kings 14:6 But the children of the murderers he slew not: according unto that which is written in the book of the law of Moses, wherein the Lord commanded, saying, The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, nor the children be put to death for the fathers; but every man shall be put to death for his own sin.

Ultimately final judgment at the end of the time will be based solely on a person's actions irrespective of what their ancestors have done.

ABC:2 Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

ABC:Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Concerning the critic's third allegation of injustice/partiality by God and Romans 9:11-13, God did determine before Jacob and Esau were born which should rule over the other. However, this is because God is able to know our personalities and what we are like inside before we're even born. Evil people begin thinking and doing evil from the womb, just as the good are known from this time as well.

ABC:Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

ABC:Psalms 58:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.

However, God still pleads with those who are evil to change and do what is right, and makes clear that He takes no pleasure in the deaths of those who are wicked.

ABC:Ezekiel 33:11 Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
12 Therefore, thou son of man, say unto the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turneth from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sinneth.
13 When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it.
14 Again, when I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; if he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right;
15 If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity;
he shall surely live, he shall not die.
16 None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unto him: he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live.
17 Yet the children of thy people say, The way of the Lord is not equal: but as for them, their way is not equal.

So, in conclusion, just because God knew enough of what Jacob and Esau were like while they were still in the womb to foreordain aspects of their lives, does not mean that God is unjust or impartial. It simply evinces the depths of God's knowledge and understanding to realize what kind of people we are from the moment we are created, even before we leave our mother's wombs. Furthermore, it should be pointed out that Esau, like his brother Jacob, was blessed permanently with land that God has permanently left to his descendants. (ABC:Deuteronomy 2:4-5)

Finally, the critic accuses God of injustice and partiality because in Matthew 13:12 Jesus says that those who have will be given more, and those with little will have that little taken away from them. However, the fuller context shows that this was spoken concerning knowledge of the Kingdom of Heaven.

The ones Jesus was speaking to had closed their own eyes (Matthew 13:14) because they did not want to realize the truth.

ABC:Matthew 13:11 He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
12 For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.
13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.
14 And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive:
15 For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

Truth is something given to those who seek it earnestly, who wish to know righteousness. Therefore it is not unjust of God to take away the understanding of those who close their eyes and ears because they don't want to know or accept the truth. God is fair and gives wisdom generously to those who seek in a right spirit by trusting God (James 1:5-6).

ABC:Proverbs 2:3 Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding;
4 If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;
5 Then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God.
6 For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.
7 He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly.

ABC:Matthew 7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

Verse 28

Don Morgan's list at Infidels claims this is a contradiction.[6]

Genesis 6:3 ¶ And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

Genesis 9:28 ¶ And Noah lived after the flood three hundred and fifty years.

God said man's age would be capped at 120 years. But God did not say that this would happen immediately. Per Canopy Theory, the reduction of atmospheric thickness as a result of the Flood meant that life no longer grew as big or, in mankind's case, lived as long after the Flood. However, this was a process centuries in the making. Mankind's age did indeed begin drastically declining after the Flood. (See Bible Chronology) Whereas man lived over 900 years regularly prior to the Flood, Noah's son Shem lived just 600 years, and Shem's son Arphaxad only 438 years. In just 16 generations after Noah, Moses would live to be 120 years old, following which noone documented in the Bible lived more than 120 years. And a 120-year maximum lifespan remains as accurate a description today as when the book of Genesis was written over 3,000 years ago.

Sources

  1. 1.0 1.1 TheThinkingAtheist. Bible Contradictions.
  2. Country Comparison: Population Growth Rate. Central Intelligence Agency.
  3. Thompson, B. (1998). In Defense of...the Bible's Inspiration. Apologetics Press.
  4. Flood Legends from Around the World. Northwest Creation Network.
  5. Thiefe, Chris. Biblical Contradictions. EvilBible.com.
  6. Morgan, Donald. Bible Inconsistencies: Bible Contradictions? Internet Infidels.