JEDP - Noah and the Arc

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Noah and the Ark

The story of Noah and the Ark (Gen. 6.9-7.5) is a doublet story with a mixed history. Traditionally cited to the P and J sources, this passage tells the story of God's instructions to Noah before the flood. Since there is only one introduction, scholars believe that the two sources were woven together to create one introduction. The J source version of this passage tells us that God was saddened by the wickedness of his people. Noah is chosen because he is righteous for his generation and for generations to come. Therfore, he instructs Noah to get seven pairs of every clean animal and one pair of unclean animal to put on his ship. The P source of this passage tells us that God sees mostly corruptness of his people and the end of all flesh. He instructs Noah to get one pair of every animal for his ark.

The flood closes the first era of the story after Eden. This era is marked by humans moving away from God and toward chaos and only those who take refuge in faith will escape. Stories of a widespread flood in ancient times are common. There are many stories of a flood in this area appear in Mesopotamian, Sumerian, and Akk literature. The Bible version of this story differs because moral fault, not pure chaos, moves a sole God, not many gods, to wipe out the population.

The dimensions of Noah's ark are roughly the same size as the Babylonian version of the ark. The term ark is only used again in the bible to describe Moses' basket, which saves him from death. Gopher wood is unidentifiable and not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible.

Works Cited

"6, 14." Oxford Biblical Studies Online - Oxford Biblical Studies Online.