Noah, Theology and Relation to Myth

The reading cycle of Judaism is on the Noah cycle (Parashat Noach). Now is a good time to go back and read some classic posts on Messianic Jewish Musings. In the first two, I describe the similarities and some differences between the Noah story and Mesopotamian myths of the flood. Why should myth and Bible have such concordance? Rather than being afraid of the parallels, we should embrace them. It’s one more evidence that God pervades the whole world and that revelation goes deeper than many would imagine. In the third article, I discuss the theology of the Noah account in light of its parallels.

Noah and Mesopotamian Myth, Part 1
A few highlights and then the link:

Perhaps one reason synagogues and churches rarely discuss the mythological backdrop of the flood story is the potential controversy. How do we deal with the fact that the Bible

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1 Response to Noah, Theology and Relation to Myth

  1. benicho says:

    Josephus certainly wasn’t intimidated by the similarities. He even goes as far as naming the historians, in his Antiquity of the Jews, both during his day and up until his day. He basically said “If you don’t believe me, just read what all these other famous historians from the other nations have said about the flood”. Josephus also mentioned that the Greeks were the first people to change the words of everything because it sounded more beautiful to them in their own languages. Apparently after Babel (the Bible is the only concise record of how the languages were created) men still shared a lot of the same language, so far as that it was notable when the Greeks specifically began changing names of people, events, and locations to suit their own language.

    You said: We ourselves are what would be called gods and goddesses.

    It’s interesting because I was just reading Genesis this weekend and there’s a curious verse I haven’t paid much attention to until I began considering the history of cultures and their deities.

    Genesis 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.

    We’ve all had our thoughts on the Nephilim, but this curious part:
    “the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown…” is particularly interesting. Who were the men of renown? To me it sounds like the legends that we hear about in mythology. Not to say that there was literally a person named Hercules or Hermes, but rather you can see where the rise of mythological beings would’ve come from. These legends would’ve been passed on by Shem, Ham and Japheth and subsequently would’ve evolved into other stories. Anyways just fun thoughts.

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