Bones of the Flood

Image by Wolfgang Eckert from Pixabay

Where are the bones of those that died in Noah’s flood?

This is an interesting question, and there may be a couple of ways to look at the answer. First of all, the flood was upon the face of the earth for about a year total. Genesis 7:17-24 is probably the most pertinent text of the Bible to describe the flood and its effects on the people and animals left when the flood began.

For forty days the floodwaters continued on the earth (Genesis 7:17). The text keeps saying that the waters prevailed upon the earth. This probably refers to the continual filling of the land with water until it was completely covered.

Genesis 7:20 tells us that the waters were as high as fifteen cubits above the mountain tops. If I’m doing my math right, that’s around 25 feet above the mountain tops. Nothing was going to swim to the surface and survive for very long.

This means that all of the land animals, birds, insects, and all humans not preserved in the ark died, drowned in the water of the flood (Genesis 7:21). All of these would’ve ended up at the bottom of the ocean on the earth’s surface.

The bodies would have decayed, if not eaten by sharks and other animals that could swim in the ocean. The Bible stresses that everything that lived on dry land died (Genesis 7:22). It doesn’t say anything about the fish or sharks or anything that could swim in the ocean. I am under the impression that all the fish and swimming things survived.

The text goes even further to use the word “blotted out” to describe the action of God against everything on the face of the earth (Genesis 7:23). This word in the Hebrew language refers to God’s judgment in wiping out, annihilating, and destroying these things.

We can interpret this in two ways. Either we can understand this Hebrew verb to mean that God destroyed life on the earth. People and animals could no longer live or breathe. In this case, the bodies would be at the bottom of the ocean.

Eventually the bones would be left after decay, and then probably buried in the sand or ground of the earth on the bottom. The bones would be buried deep beneath the earth in the sediment from when the Flood happened in the geological scale.

The other approach to interpretation of this Hebrew verb would mean that God completely annihilated all evidence that life existed on the planet before the flood. This would mean that there would be no bones left because God would have destroyed them.

I’m not sure which one I would choose. I believe that we are digging up the bones of dinosaurs that died in the flood. But I don’t know that we are finding a large amount of human bones as we did for dinosaur bones.

On the other hand, dinosaurs were localized in certain areas of the land, like North America. I am not sure if there were any human civilizations in North America at the time of the flood. I believe the best support of the Bible, archaeology, and geology supports a worldwide flood. But I am more of a theologian than a scientist.

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