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Chronology Check

Perspective

on January 1, 2014
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The geology associated with Noah’s Flood has been much-studied since the release of the classic book The Genesis Flood in 1961. Less attention has been paid to the timeline of specific events during the Flood. For the past four years, a team of Hebrew scholars, making up the Cataclysm Chronology Research Group, has been carefully studying the Hebrew of the Genesis narrative to reexamine whether dominant views about Flood chronology are true to Scripture.

The challenge is to place certain milestones at the correct moment in the Flood sequence. One major question is whether the Flood peaked at the end of the forty days and nights of rain or whether the flood mechanisms (“fountains of the great deep . . . , the windows of heaven . . . , and the rain” of Genesis 7:11–12) continued in operation throughout the first 150 days, while “the waters prevailed on the earth.” This chronology has a direct influence on a correct interpretation of the geological record.

The scholars who are examining these intriguing details fully agree on the authority of the Bible and a worldwide Flood. An analysis of the literary structure of the Flood narrative and careful observations of the theological emphases may help us sort out some chronological issues in the sequence of events in the Flood narrative. As all Bible students should be doing, these researchers are seeking the most precise understanding of the text and subordinating their scientific conjecture to the revealed Word of God.

The initial findings of this group are being published in the new book Grappling with the Chronology of the Genesis Flood (Master Books)

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