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Noah and the Flood

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Genesis is the first book of the Holy Bible. The book of Genesis contains, a creation story, Noah and the great flood, and accounts for Abraham, and Jacob.

This presentation shall explain the historical context of Genesis, which shall be analysed, interpreted and clarified in modern day English. This approach will focus on one part of Genesis, Noah and the Great flood.

Tradition has it that the Book of Genesis was written by the Prophet Moses 1,300 years before Christ, It was the first of the five books he compiled. The tradition believes that Moses was the writer of the first five books of the Bible, but it does not claim that he wrote each word in these books. They include some additions that were obviously made after his death, e.g. the story of Moses' death, explanations of geographical names and names of peoples that were unknown to the later generations, and other such comments. It is known that letters first appeared by only 1,200 years before Moses in Mesopotamia, where Abraham came from. Abraham could have passed to his descendants some notes, which later became the basis of the Book of Genesis. We can suggest that such written notes existed because Moses' disciple Joshua had mentioned a Book of Jasher that later disappeared. It is natural to believe that Moses had secretaries, who probably recorded the events involving Moses himself, as these facts were described in the third person Though Genesis cannot be labelled as the most ancient book in the world literature, it is still the oldest reliable book of history. Out of all information available to him, Moses selected only what was related to the religious life of people. That is why his book should not be treated as mere history, but as a source of spiritual wisdom, a book inspired by God Himself. People believe that the purpose of the book of Genesis is to show the superiority of God over the nature gods and goddesses of the Egyptians.

The Story of the Flood contains two sources, the E source and the Priestly source P, this result of weaving together two previous versions of the story, one from the E source and one from the Priestly source (P). In parts of the story, E and P sources are difficult or impossible to separate.

One of the examples from the E and P sources are the story of the animals going onto the ark. In one version we are specifically told that all animals, 'clean' and 'unclean' went onto the ark two by two.

From all the living creatures, from all flesh, you must take two of each kind aboard the ark, to save their lives with yours; they must be a male and a female.

(Genesis 6:19)

The other variant (priestly) version of the story the 'clean' animals go on seven by seven.

'Of all the clean animals you must take seven of each kind, both male and female; of the unclean animals you must take two, a meal and its female and the birds of the heaven also, seven of each kind.' (Genesis 7:2-3)

The reason for the variant is that Noah must be portrayed as offering up animal sacrifices upon leaving the ark in the priestly version, thus suggesting that priestly sacrificial policy had an illustrious history. Similarly in the priestly version the flood is said to last 'forty days and nights' since it appears that 'forty' was considered a well-known number.

Chapter six of Genesis contains, Sons of God and Daughters of men, the corruption of mankind and the Preparations for the flood. God was being disgraced by man.

God said, 'My spirit must not for ever be disgraced in man, for he is but flesh; his life shall last no more than a hundred and twenty years.' (Genesis 6:3)

God cursed man, so they may no longer live for over 120 years. God saw the corruption of man and regretted making them. This is the reason why no one can live pass 120 years of age.

God regretted having made man on the earth, and his heart grieved. 'I will rid the earth's face of man, my own creation,' God said 'and the animals also, reptiles too, and the birds of heaven; I regret having made them. (Genesis 6:6-7)

God planned to cleanse the earth of all living things, but Noah had found favour with God, meaning God liked Noah and what he's been doing.

God said to Noah, 'the end has come for all things of flesh; I have decided this because the earth is full of violence of man's making, and I will efface them from the earth."(Genesis 6:13)

God told Noah to build an ark, which will carry his family and two of every animal, male and female. Noah did as God asked.




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