Overview:

We get kids to sing songs or watch cartoons that recount this most famous of biblical passages. But, my, is it a horrible story.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

There are a number of events that take place in the Bible that Christians don’t really evaluate carefully enough. The Ten Plagues of Egypt constitute one of these stories and another one is Noah’s flood.

There are many problems with the story of Noah’s flood that render it completely nonsensical story when put under close scrutiny. For example, it shows that God is not omniscient because he appears to be surprised that humanity is such a terrible lot that he starts the project all over again as if this wasn’t something he should have already predicted given his infallible divine foreknowledge. And don’t get me started on how it is not physically or practically possible by any stretch of the imagination. Moreover, there is simply no evidence for a global flood or even a large regional flood that some theists will try to argue (a theory that makes equally little sense).

But let’s focus on the global flood. The one described in the Bible is a terrible event. Of course, this is mythology. It is obviously mythology. But an awful lot of people still believe that it is literally and historically true.

First of all, this involved the death of everyone on Earth bar eight. Just think about the staggering scope of death that is meted out to the entire global population. We are not just talking about evil people that deserve this, we are talking about children, pregnant mothers, unborn fetuses, the disabled, the elderly, and the infirm. Everybody.

And it doesn’t cut the mustard that all of those people simply “deserved to be killed.” This is a completely unrealistic claim and one that renders God morally reprehensible. It also makes God look like an Incredibly shoddy designer.

What needs to be remembered here is that the millions of people who died in the flood didn’t die instantaneously. This was a case of drowning to death. People would have been running to higher ground and panicking and probably killing each other and finally meeting their deaths in a slow, suffering episode of mass drowning. Men, women, children, infants, elderly…

The worst genocides on Earth haven’t come close to this sort of mass death in the time period concerned.

And that doesn’t even begin to consider the sheer volume of animal death throughout the globe. Every animal bar two (or seven, depending on which source you read) dies. And that includes all of the salt-water marine life that would have perished with the sudden onrush of fresh water. What had the animals done to God?

What an absolutely horrific tale.

And we get children to sing dainty little songs about this episode. There are lovely cartoons to relay this story. Picture books recount the mass death in primary colors and children’s plays happily dramatize the nefarious narrative.

When we remember this biblical story or when Christians make reference to it, we should think or retort, “Oh, that absolutely heinous and disgusting episode” and we should grimace in distaste.

If anything shows that God is a moral monster, this story does.

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Jonathan MS Pearce

A TIPPLING PHILOSOPHER Jonathan MS Pearce is a philosopher, author, columnist, and public speaker with an interest in writing about almost anything, from skepticism to science, politics, and morality,...