Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#31

Post by timsoh » Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:48 am

In my opinion, every covenant from Edenic to the New has an extension to all of humanity, thus should be less quick to limit the Noahic Covenant. Based on this hermeneutical model, “all the families of the earth shall be blessed” in the Abrahamic Covenant could be relegated to symbolic and limited rather than universal. It would be like Sarai telling Abram that God did not really mean that his descendants would be countless like the stars of heaven which was a common figure of speech not to be taken literally. Furthermore, one cannot always believe things heard in a deep sleep. Afterall it was scientifically impossible due to his age and his wife’s infertility. Surely, Abram should use his God-given reason and sought some other rational way (i.e. Haggar) that was more in accordance to science.
Perhaps the motivation of this hermeneutic is like Lot’s wife pestering her husband to be relevant to the culture in order to be a blessing to their neighbors. The way to reach as many people as possible is to live close to population centers. Since Lot has been so loyal to Abram for so many years, it was high time to strike out on his own for the sake of their daughters. Perhaps, the wife felt the covenant should be reinterpreted to apply to Lot as he is the nephew since Abram was scientifically unlikely to have children of his own.
I fear this hermeneutical tendency of OEC and EC to moderate absolutes and diminish universality in the Bible is breeding many Laodiceans. Perhaps when interpreting the 70-year captivity in Jeremiah 25, scribes using this hermeneutic would have advised to Jews to view this symbolically. Zealous missionaries would be criticized for their literalistic exposition of Matt 24:14. The earnest new believer would be chided for using Acts 16:31 in his prayer for the salvation of his family members.
I am neither satisfied with the hermeneutical tendency of YEC who are so sure of their interpretation of Bible and science that they appear like Pharisees or Ephesians. Everyone with a differing viewpoint is deemed an enemy of the truth.
Every camp is quick to belittle the others. There is none that exhibits the humility of OT prophets who admitted they did not know it all, or of Jesus’ disciples who realized they did not understand Jesus’ teachings while He was alive with them. Like Mary, they all practiced the art of treasuring up what was revealed and pondering in their hearts (Luke 2:19) until they were enlightened by future developments. This lost art in Scriptures is always cast in a favorable light.
I’m participating in this discussion to find a reasonable and biblical way to educate young believers so they can navigate through the struggles of faith in college. We also need to present the gospel in meaningful way to the lost and dying. Thank you for your challenging insights.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#32

Post by DBowling » Wed Jan 13, 2021 7:26 pm

timsoh wrote:
Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:48 am
In my opinion, every covenant from Edenic to the New has an extension to all of humanity, thus should be less quick to limit the Noahic Covenant. Based on this hermeneutical model, “all the families of the earth shall be blessed” in the Abrahamic Covenant could be relegated to symbolic and limited rather than universal.
I disagree...
God made a covenant with Abraham that specifically dealt with Abraham and his descendants, but as you point out, the Abrahamic Covenant specifically reaches out beyond just the descendants of Abraham to "all the families of the earth".

Again, context is critical as is the text itself.
The context of the Noahic covenant deals with Noah, his descendants, and the earth/land that they dwell in.
The context of the Abrahamic covenant deals with Abraham and his descendants, but the covenant also explicitly mentions all the families of the earth.
Why does the Abrahamic covenant extend beyond the descendants of Abraham?
Because the covenant explicitly mentions "all the families of the earth".
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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#33

Post by DBowling » Thu Jan 14, 2021 6:12 am

DBowling wrote:
Wed Jan 13, 2021 7:26 pm
Again, context is critical as is the text itself.
The context of the Noahic covenant deals with Noah, his descendants, and the earth/land that they dwell in.
One more quick comment on the Noahic Covenant.

In the 5000 years since God made his covenant with Noah and his descendants, descendants of Noah have come to dwell all over our planet.
So from that perspective, you could say that the extent of the Noahic covenant includes everyone who dwells in the same land that descendants of Noah are dwelling in.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#34

Post by Philip » Thu Jan 14, 2021 7:07 am

DB: So from that perspective, you could say that the extent of the Noahic covenant includes everyone who dwells in the same land that descendants of Noah are dwelling in.
Of course, IF the flood of Noah was NOT worldwide, then greater humanity is a mixture of ancient humans not only descended from Noah, but from ancient humanity as well. Also, IF humanity also preceded Adam (which the many much-older human settlement sites would indicate, then present humanity has lines going back to the very first created men (Genesis 1). So how does that sync up with who is included (today) in Noah's covenant?

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#35

Post by Stu » Thu Jan 14, 2021 7:41 am

RickD wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 1:40 pm
RickD wrote: ↑
Here’s Heiser’s own words:
https://drmsh.com/christians-who-believ ... than-this/

Heiser believes that the Bible teaches that the earth is flat and round.
stu wrote:
So Heiser doesn't believe the Bible is the inspired word of God and parts were written by ignorant man??
I’m not sure how you came to that conclusion, from what I posted. While I don’t always agree with Heiser, I don’t think it’s accurate to say that he doesn’t believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God.
It's in the article that you linked to, here's the quote.
I can already hear the comeback. “Let God be true and every man a liar!” Let me just say God isn’t a liar. He knows (and knew) the earth is a globe. It just happens that the people he chose to produce this thing we call the Bible didn’t know that. And God couldn’t have cared less. The writers God used to produce the Bible were not inspired to write about things of the natural world that were beyond their own worldview and knowledge base. And to argue (as normal 24-hour day creationists do) that God gave them advanced scientific knowledge, or that such advanced knowledge is encrypted in the biblical text, means that what they wrote could never have communicated that important knowledge to their original audience (or any audience prior to recent centuries).
It's pretty clear from the above quote that Heiser thinks that some of the writers used their OWN knowledge rather than the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#36

Post by DBowling » Thu Jan 14, 2021 8:19 am

Philip wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 7:07 am
DB: So from that perspective, you could say that the extent of the Noahic covenant includes everyone who dwells in the same land that descendants of Noah are dwelling in.
Of course, IF the flood of Noah was NOT worldwide, then greater humanity is a mixture of ancient humans not only descended from Noah, but from ancient humanity as well. Also, IF humanity also preceded Adam (which the many much-older human settlement sites would indicate, then present humanity has lines going back to the very first created men (Genesis 1). So how does that sync up with who is included (today) in Noah's covenant?
I go back to what the Noahic covenant states.
The scope of the Noahic covenant involves:
1. Every descendent of Noah
2. The land upon which the descendants of Noah dwell.

Hypothetically speaking, a human who does not contain any of Noah's DNA or who is dwelling in a land where no people with Noahic DNA are dwelling would not be covered by the Noahic covenant.
However, as I mentioned above, after 5000 years Noah's DNA has been dispersed among most of humanity (after interbreeding among non-Adamic and/or non-Noahic humans), so I am confident that the current scope of the Noahic covenant is for all intents and purposes 'global'.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#37

Post by RickD » Thu Jan 14, 2021 10:41 am

Stu wrote:
It's pretty clear from the above quote that Heiser thinks that some of the writers used their OWN knowledge rather than the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
I’m not seeing that from Heiser’s quote. Unless I’m missing something that you’re seeing.

All I’m seeing is that Heiser is saying that the writers weren’t inspired to write anything scientifically speaking, that was beyond their scope of knowledge. And of course biblical writers used BOTH their knowledge and inspiration. That’s why each of the gospels were written from different perspectives.
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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#38

Post by timsoh » Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:08 pm

DBowling wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 8:19 am
Philip wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 7:07 am
DB: So from that perspective, you could say that the extent of the Noahic covenant includes everyone who dwells in the same land that descendants of Noah are dwelling in.
Of course, IF the flood of Noah was NOT worldwide, then greater humanity is a mixture of ancient humans not only descended from Noah, but from ancient humanity as well. Also, IF humanity also preceded Adam (which the many much-older human settlement sites would indicate, then present humanity has lines going back to the very first created men (Genesis 1). So how does that sync up with who is included (today) in Noah's covenant?
I go back to what the Noahic covenant states.
The scope of the Noahic covenant involves:
1. Every descendent of Noah
2. The land upon which the descendants of Noah dwell.

Hypothetically speaking, a human who does not contain any of Noah's DNA or who is dwelling in a land where no people with Noahic DNA are dwelling would not be covered by the Noahic covenant.
However, as I mentioned above, after 5000 years Noah's DNA has been dispersed among most of humanity (after interbreeding among non-Adamic and/or non-Noahic humans), so I am confident that the current scope of the Noahic covenant is for all intents and purposes 'global'.
Noah’s flood: cataclysmic far larger than local or regional
God’s Special Revelation
Old Testament
First, God’s stated purpose was to wipe out evil and corrupt humans and specifically saved Noah’s family (6:11-13) gave indication this is far from a local or regional issue. This will be further elaborated by Isaiah, Jesus and Peter.
Second, the scope strongly suggests this is much larger (once in human existence event):
  • It rained for 40 days and forty nights (Gen 7:4)
    • God’s intent and result was the blotting out every living thing on the ground (7:4; 21-23)
    • Waters did not only come from heaven but also from the “fountains of the deep” (7:11; 8:2)
    • Water level rises covered “all the high mountains under the whole heaven” (7:19):
    • It took 150 days for the water to abate (8:5)
    • Noah spent about a year in the ark.
Third, Isaiah understood that the waters of Noah would never go over the earth again and used this to confirm the steadfastness of God’s love for Israel (Is. 54:9-10). If this is not a never-to-recur event, then this is very weak analogy.
New Testament
Jesus equated the wickedness of the world prior to His 2nd Coming with those prior to Noah’s Flood (Matt. 24:37-39; Lk. 17:26-27). If it was just a local/regional flood, then this is a highly inadequate analogy.
Under divine inspiration, Peter adopted a larger than regional/local view in these three passages:
  • • In 1 Peter 3:17-20, Peter exhorted persecuted Christians that it is far better to suffer for doing good using Christ suffering for the sins of all of mankind and he tied it with the Noah’s Flood.
    • Further in 2 Peter 2:4-5, Peter equated how God did not spare the evil angels with Him not sparing “the ancient world” by bringing a flood on “the world of the ungodly.”
    • Finally, in 2 Peter 3:3-7, Peter impressed upon his readers that “in the last days scoffers will come … indulging in their own lusts,” and that God will ultimately judge and destroy such people just like the Noah’s Flood.
God’s Book of Nature
History
So much of ANE traditions are used by OEC and EC to justify their re-interpretation of the Bible, but far lesser weight is given to other ancient records of cataclysmic flood. Many of them share too many of the unique characteristics of the Noah’s flood to be coincidental. Even the Chinese word for boat 船 is made up of three characters: vessel 舟 eight 八 mouth 口, which is the exact number of persons on Noah's Ark. The odds of coincidence would be far less than for macro-evolution.
http://mail.nwcreation.net/images/flood_traditions.jpg

Science
• The advent of flood catastrophism in 1970s shook the presumed tower of uniformitarianism. It led to more discoveries of flood catastrophism around the world. After almost half a century vindicating Bretz’s Missoula flood, other geologist found ancient epic floods at the Black Sea, the Tsangpo Gorge and the Grand Canyon. Although these are different from the flood described in the Noah’s account but it helped opened the field of geology to entertain a long repudiated concept.
• Modern understanding of plate tectonics also born in 1970s could also better explained the global nature of Noah’s Flood. In the 2011 Fukushima Earthquake which triggered epic tsunamis, the seafloor was documented to move half a football field. Just as it is naïve for YEC to ascribe all earth’s sculpting to the Noah’s Flood, it is highly inconceivable that gradualism could not describe all geologic formation.
• One key argument against global flood is there is just not enough water to flood the whole world. Recent discovery shows huge deposits of water trapped under the earth’s crust in ringwoodite estimated at least twice the amount on the surface oceans. There is also new discovery on huge aquifers under the ocean.

Keeping an open mind is not just for students of the Bible but equally applies to students of nature. Just as OT prophets, Jesus’s disciples and Mary “mulled” over special revelation by pondering and meditating on things they could not understand, scientists should also learn from recent scientific discoveries, practice this skill of mulling over natural revelation. Scientists should integrate the humanities (e.g. history) to direct them in their search of clues.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#39

Post by RickD » Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:29 pm

timsoh wrote:
Keeping an open mind is not just for students of the Bible but equally applies to students of nature.
I couldn’t agree more. But if you asked me that 20 years ago when I believed in a young earth, and global flood, I couldn’t have honestly claimed that I had an open mind.

When I started to open my mind, I realized there’s no way there was a global noahic flood, and no way the earth is 6,000-10,000 years old.
John 5:24
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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#40

Post by DBowling » Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:14 pm

RickD wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:29 pm
timsoh wrote:
Keeping an open mind is not just for students of the Bible but equally applies to students of nature.
I couldn’t agree more. But if you asked me that 20 years ago when I believed in a young earth, and global flood, I couldn’t have honestly claimed that I had an open mind.

When I started to open my mind, I realized there’s no way there was a global noahic flood, and no way the earth is 6,000-10,000 years old.
My story is similar to Rick's.

I was raised and trained from my youngest years as a Young Earther and a Global Flooder.
It was studies during my later years that convinced me that Special Revelation (Scripture) and Natural Revelation were inconsistent with YEC and a Global Flood.
It was an open mind to be faithful to Scripture over Tradition that led me to reject the YEC/Global Flood tradition.

Here is a good article from our host site...
The Genesis Flood Why the Bible Says It Must be Local
http://www.godandscience.org/apologetic ... flood.html
Last edited by DBowling on Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#41

Post by timsoh » Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:16 pm

RickD wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:29 pm
timsoh wrote:
Keeping an open mind is not just for students of the Bible but equally applies to students of nature.
I couldn’t agree more. But if you asked me that 20 years ago when I believed in a young earth, and global flood, I couldn’t have honestly claimed that I had an open mind.

When I started to open my mind, I realized there’s no way there was a global noahic flood, and no way the earth is 6,000-10,000 years old.
I'm definitely not young earth much less young universe. More like ancient universe, old earth, not-so-young but recent life. In my current opinion, Noah's flood is clearly a once-in-human-existence event.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#42

Post by RickD » Thu Jan 14, 2021 5:28 pm

timsoh wrote:
I'm definitely not young earth much less young universe. More like ancient universe, old earth, not-so-young but recent life. In my current opinion, Noah's flood is clearly a once-in-human-existence event.
You do realize that there’s no way that a global Noahic flood fits into an old earth worldview?
John 5:24
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Kenny wrote:
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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#43

Post by Stu » Fri Jan 15, 2021 5:15 am

RickD wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 10:41 am
Stu wrote:
It's pretty clear from the above quote that Heiser thinks that some of the writers used their OWN knowledge rather than the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
I’m not seeing that from Heiser’s quote. Unless I’m missing something that you’re seeing.

All I’m seeing is that Heiser is saying that the writers weren’t inspired to write anything scientifically speaking, that was beyond their scope of knowledge. And of course biblical writers used BOTH their knowledge and inspiration. That’s why each of the gospels were written from different perspectives.
Heiser says that the Bible promotes a flat stationary earth that has a dome over it. That's what it states, he believes that.

He just says that it is wrong and the people that wrote it knew no better.

Whether you believe the Bible promotes a flat stationary earth is not the point, Heiser believes it but just says that the Bible is wrong because man wrote it who had no knowledge of a round moving earth.
Only when the blood runs and the shackles restrain, will the sheep then awake. When all is lost.

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#44

Post by RickD » Fri Jan 15, 2021 6:26 am

Stu wrote:
Heiser says that the Bible promotes a flat stationary earth that has a dome over it. That's what it states, he believes that.

He just says that it is wrong and the people that wrote it knew no better.

Whether you believe the Bible promotes a flat stationary earth is not the point, Heiser believes it but just says that the Bible is wrong because man wrote it who had no knowledge of a round moving earth.
I definitely missed that. Do you have the link where he actually says that? I’d like to see what he’s talking about.
John 5:24
24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.

Kenny wrote:
"You don’t need faith, logic, reason, proof, or anything else to be atheist, all you need to do is reject what someone told you."



St. Richard the Sarcastic--The Patron Saint of Irony

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Re: Dr. Mike Heiser on Noah's Flood

#45

Post by timsoh » Fri Jan 15, 2021 2:34 pm

DBowling wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:14 pm
RickD wrote:
Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:29 pm
timsoh wrote:
Keeping an open mind is not just for students of the Bible but equally applies to students of nature.
I couldn’t agree more. But if you asked me that 20 years ago when I believed in a young earth, and global flood, I couldn’t have honestly claimed that I had an open mind.

When I started to open my mind, I realized there’s no way there was a global noahic flood, and no way the earth is 6,000-10,000 years old.
My story is similar to Rick's.

I was raised and trained from my youngest years as a Young Earther and a Global Flooder.
It was studies during my later years that convinced me that Special Revelation (Scripture) and Natural Revelation were inconsistent with YEC and a Global Flood.
It was an open mind to be faithful to Scripture over Tradition that led me to reject the YEC/Global Flood tradition.

Here is a good article from our host site...
The Genesis Flood Why the Bible Says It Must be Local
http://www.godandscience.org/apologetic ... flood.html
I can truthfully say that I have read the article a few times, and drafted my response and revised it as much; perhaps because I’m a newbie. I cannot help but find the interpretive technique used in the article to be similar to the serpent’s “you will not surely die” (perhaps stressing immediacy). Jesus said, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations!” and “this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the world, as a testimony to all the nations; and then the end will come.” Using this interpretive technique, you would quench the zeal of churches, missionaries and bible translators by parsing these verses to justify that Jesus never meant literally every people group or tongue. You can never find any place in the Bible where “all nations” meant global, every people group or tongue.

For the sake of illustration, imagine when we come before the Almighty God and He let us watch a replay of the Flood in 3D. The continents are not like today nor like Pangea. We fast forward to the moment when the door of the Ark was shut; torrents of rain burst from the sky like water balloons. The earth convulsed with violent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions with water spewing out from the earth’s crust. Peaks lowered and valleys raised as waters surged and lifted the Ark with humans and animals outside drowning everywhere. As we traverse the planet, we see some land masses not covered by water and there were some animals and humans. However, over the months, all life eventually perished for lack of freshwater and food and perhaps exposure. Would you shout, in righteous indignation and gleeful satisfaction, at other YEC believers, “See! It was not global!”?

As an OEC, I am not ashamed to admit that the book of nature greatly informed my hermeneutical selection. Yes, the original Hebrew affords several interpretive choices for those early Genesis verses. I am conscious how those choices should be congruous with other OT passages particularly Genesis. In their eagerness to find harmony with current evolutionary findings, EC opts for poor choices more akin to sacrificing a rook only to regret it a few moves later with newer discoveries. Perhaps the same honesty and caution is needed for those maintaining a “local” flood. Otherwise, the same interpretive extreme is ill-advisedly applied to the universal passages like the Great Commission.

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