Reading through the Bible: Day 2

Genesis 4-5; 1 Chronicles 1:1; Genesis 6-7

I’ve included 1 Chronicles 1:1 directly after the genealogy from Adam to Noah, simply because I don’t want to be left with a day in the future where I have to go through all the genealogies at once, since that’s just boring. This gives us the opportunity to compare the genealogies of the Chronicler with the earlier ones.

Who are all the other people?

A big issue at this point is Cain’s wife and all those other people who would kill Cain knowing he was a murderer. If God created only Adam and Eve, where did these other people come from. This is obviously only a problem for those who take a literal reading of Genesis.

Information here is scarce, Adam and Eve were created at child bearing maturity, but we don’t know how long they were in Eden, only that it’s unlikely that Cain was born prior to expulsion. We also don’t have any information about how old Cain and Abel were at the moment of Abel’s murder, and we don’t know if the lack of a mention of other children means there were none. We do know all this happened before the 130th year from creation, since that was when Seth was born.

So, the answer generally given by YECs over the issue of Cain’s wife, and those other people is that they were all brothers and sisters of Cain and Abel, born between Abel’s birth and death. Given that we probably have upper on a hundred years to work with, a population large enough for Cain to worry could have formed.

So many animals, so little space

Obviously a big criticism of the flood story is the impossibility of fitting every species of creature onto the Ark. As an answer to this, the kind division is often drawn at genus (and sometimes phylum) by YECs. The big problem is that some feel this opens the window to evolution, by saying that speciation does, in fact happen. The YECs’ replies are long and complex, and like yesterday I don’t really want to get into a big debate over evolution and creation, if you have questions ask, or follow and I’ll get to doing posts at some point. John Woodmorappe’s Noah’s Ark: a feasibility study looks at space; size; feed; waste disposal and most other issues, and is the most common source for YECs replies to the issues surrounding the Ark itself.

My main issue with the whole logistical issue is on the kind division issue. The kinds should be able to breed, so equids and the panthera genus don’t pose too much of a problem for the apologist, but dinosaurs can’t be tested, and many creatures haven’t been tested for cross breeding purposes. This results in creationists being left using a argument much resembling (what I call) evolution’s argument by similarity.

Of course, there’s another issue, which Woodmorappe addresses, is that not every creature came in twos, some came in fourteens (Genesis 7:2). This, of course pushes space to a greater premium.

I’ve been meaning to get into the Ark problems for a while, hopefully I’ll be able to post on it soon, in which case those following the site will get the post. My answers will largely be based on Woodmorappe’s account, with an examination of some of the criticisms.

Have I missed interesting stuff? Are there things you’d like to comment on? What sort of issues have you had with the Ark story? Leave a reply or comment below, say your piece.

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