The Glacial Epoch And The Noachian Deluge -- By: Herbert William Magoun

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 067:265 (Jan 1910)
Article: The Glacial Epoch And The Noachian Deluge
Author: Herbert William Magoun

The Glacial Epoch And The Noachian Deluge

Herbert William Magoun


It has been commonly supposed that Noah landed on Mount Ararat. The Bible does not so teach, however; for it does not say, “Ararat,” but, “the mountains of Ararat,” referring, evidently, to a district. The fact that Mount Ararat has two peaks, one about forty-five hundred feet lower than the other, does not justify the assumption that this particular mountain was meant by the Bible expression, although the name has survived as a designation for the two peaks in question. It therefore seems clear that the words are general in their application and not particular. They probably have reference to some indefinite point on a range of mountains in Armenia, in a region then known as Ararat, which may have included the present Ararat, the name having ultimately survived as a designation for the most conspicuous mountain in the neighborhood. Strange as the landing seems, — inland, up-stream, and some hundreds of miles northward from the point of departure, — it is by no means inexplicable, if all the facts are considered.

The Persian Gulf has a narrow entrance flanked by headlands, beyond which it broadens out into a bay of large dimensions. This is a dominating factor in the problem; for the first tidal waves from the Indian Ocean had to pass through this narrow inlet and then spread themselves over the surface of

the great basin beyond before they could reach the Euphrates valley. When that point was finally attained, their fury was spent; and, while they must have continued to rise with a rapidity that was frightful, their power to destroy by violence had been reduced to a minimum. The ark was therefore lifted by the advancing flood and not wrecked by an avalanche of water. As the upheavals grew in power, the tidal waves were also intensified; but a floating vessel would be carried forward with little danger from that particular source.

Before each wave culminated and began its return, a new one probably overtook it and forced it onward; and, in this way, the “head “finally became sufficient to carry the water, and the ark, over the highlands of Armenia, beyond which other waves from the Atlantic by this time must have begun their work of devastation. Somewhere in the general region of the Black Sea, whither the strange craft was probably wafted, the inevitable reaction finally took place, and the ark must then have been carried approximately in the direction of the strongest current. It is not necessary to suppose that Ararat itself was sighted in the upward voyage; for it would seem to be too far to the eastward to be in line with the natural movement of the waters under the conditions m...

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