Appendix 6: The Universality of the Deluge

by Dr. Henry M. Morris:

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

Central to the question of the historicity of the early chapters of Genesis is the question whether the Noahic Flood was global or only regional. A worldwide Flood would have cataclysmically changed the entire surface of the globe, including any fossil-bearing sedimentary rocks that may have been formed prior to that time. Consequently, the earth's present fossiliferous sediments must date largely from the time of their deposition in the waters of the great Flood.

On the other hand, the modern evolutionary system of earth history denies any such global cataclysm and is based on the assumption of uniformitarianism. The sedimentary rocks and their fossil contents have been interpreted as evidence of a vast series of evolutionary ages extending over billions of years of time, deposited slowly and generally uniformly over the earth as living organisms gradually evolved into higher and higher forms during those ages.

The “day-age theory” is the attempt by Bible expositors to accommodate these evolutionary ages within the framework of the six days of creation. The “gap theory” is the attempt by other expositors to accommodate them outside the framework of the six days of Creation. Both such theories, if consistent, are associated with the “local flood theory,” since a universal flood would have destroyed the sedimentary framework of the geological ages. That is, a universal flood precludes the historicity of the geological ages, and vice versa.

If the Genesis Flood actually was worldwide, then the strained exegesis associated with the day-age and gap theories becomes unnecessary and harmful. In the tabulation below, therefore, are listed one hundred reasons why the Flood should be accepted as a true global cataclysm.

From References in Genesis

Genesis Reference Argument
1. Genesis 1:7 Water above the atmosphere must have been global in extent
2. Genesis 2:5 No rain on the earth must have been worldwide condition
3. Genesis 2:6 Earth mist watered the whole face of the ground
4. Genesis 2:10-14 Edenic geography no longer in existence
5. Genesis 4:22 High civilization at dawn of history not continuous with present world
6. Genesis 5:5, etc. Longevity of antediluvian patriarchs indicates distinctive biosphere
7. Genesis 6:1 Man had multiplied on the face of the earth
8. Genesis 6:2 Demonic-human unions co-extensive with mankind
9. Genesis 6:5 Universal evil inexplicable in post-diluvian society
10. Genesis 6:6-7 Repentance of God extended to the whole animal creation
11. Genesis 6:11 Earth was filled with violence and corruption before God
12. Genesis 6:12 All flesh was corrupted (possibly including animals)
13. Genesis 6:13 God decided to destroy both man and the earth
14. Genesis 6:15 Ark too large for regional fauna
15. Genesis 6:17 Everything with the breath of life to die
16. Genesis 6:19 Purpose of ark was to keep two of every sort alive
17. Genesis 6:20 Animals of all kinds migrated to the ark
18. Genesis 6:21 All kinds of edible food taken on the ark
19. Genesis 7:4 Every living substance on the ground to be destroyed
20. Genesis 7:10 “The flood” (Hebrew mabbul) applies solely to Noah's Flood.
21. Genesis 7:11 All the fountains of the great deep cleaved open in one day.
22. Genesis 7:11 The “sluiceways from the floodgates” of heaven were opened
23. Genesis 7:12 Rain poured continuously for forty days and forty nights
24. Genesis 7:18 The waters prevailed and increased greatly
25. Genesis 7:19 High hills under the whole heaven were covered
26. Genesis 7:20 Waters fifteen cubits above highest mountains
27. Genesis 7:21 Every man died on the earth
28. Genesis 7:22 All flesh with the breath of life in the dry land died
29. Genesis 7:23 Every living substance destroyed off the face of the ground
30. Genesis 7:24 Waters at maximum height for five months
31. Genesis 8:2 Windows of heaven open for five months
33. Genesis 8:4 Ark floated over 17,000-ft. mountains for five months
34. Genesis 8:5 Water receded 2-1/2 months before mountains tops seen
35. Genesis 8:9 Dove found no suitable ground even after four months of recession
36. Genesis 8:11 Plants began budding after nine months of the Flood
37. Genesis 8:14 Occupants were in the ark over a year
38. Genesis 8:19 All kinds of present nonmarine animals came from the ark
39. Genesis 8:21 God smote all things living only once
40. Genesis 8:22 Present uniformity of nature dates from the end of the Flood
41. Genesis 9:1 Earth was to be filled with descendants of Noah
42. Genesis 9:2 Changed relation between man and animals followed the Flood
43. Genesis 9:3 Man permitted animal food after Flood
44. Genesis 9:6 Institution of human government dates from Flood
45. Genesis 9:10 God's covenant made with every living creature
46. Genesis 9:11 The Flood promised by God never to come again on the earth
47. Genesis 9:13 Rainbow placed in sky after the Flood
48. Genesis 9:19 Whole earth overspread by the sons of Noah
49. Genesis 11:1 Whole earth of one language after the Flood
50. Genesis 11:9 All men lived in one place after the Flood

From Other Biblical Writers

Genesis Reference Argument
51. Job 12:15 The waters overturned the earth
52. Psalm 29:10 The Flood testified God as eternal king
53. Psalm 104:8 Flood terminated by crustal tectonics
54. Isaiah 54:9 Waters of Noah went over the earth
55. Mt. 24:37 The days of Noah like those when Christ comes
56. Mt. 24:39 The Flood took them all away
57. Luke 17:27 The Flood destroyed them all
58. Heb. 11:7 Noah warned of things never seen before
59. Heb. 11:7 Noah condemned the world by his faith
60. 1 Pet. 3:20 Only eight souls saved on the ark through the Flood
61. 2 Pet. 2:5 God spared not the old world (Greek kosmos)
62. 2 Pet. 2:5 God brought the Flood on the world of the ungodly
63. 2 Pet. 2:5 The “flood” (Greek kataklusmos) applied solely to Noah's Flood
64. 2 Pet. 3:6 The world that then was, perished by the watery cataclysm

From Non-Biblical Evidence


65. Worldwide distribution of Flood traditions

66. Origin of civilization near Ararat-Babylon region in post-Flood time

67. Convergence of population growth statistics on date of Flood

68. Dating of oldest living things at post-Flood time

69. Worldwide occurrence of water-laid sediments and sedimentary rocks

70. Recent uplift of major mountain ranges

71. Marine fossils on crests of mountains

72. Evidence of former worldwide warm climate

73. Necessity of catastrophic burial and rapid lithification of fossil deposits

74. Recent origin of many datable geological processes

75. Worldwide distribution of all types of fossils

76. Uniform physical appearance of rocks from different “ages”

77. Frequent mixing of fossils from different “ages”

78. Near-random deposition of formational sequences

79. Equivalence of total organic material in present world and fossil world

80. Wide distribution of recent volcanic rocks

81. Evidence of recent drastic rise in sea level

82. Worldwide occurrence of raised shore lines and river terraces

83. Evidence of recent drastic rise in sea level

84. Universal occurrence of rivers in valleys too large for the present stream

85. Sudden extinction of dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals

86. Rapid onset of glacial period

87. Existence of polystrate fossils

88. Preservation of tracks and other ephemeral markings throughout geologic column

89. Worldwide occurrence of sedimentary fossil “graveyards” in rocks of all “ages”

90. Absence of any physical evidence of chronologic boundary between rocks of successive “a

91. Occurrence of all rock types (shale, limestone, granite, etc.) in all “ages”

92. Parallel of supposed evolutionary sequence through different “ages” with modern eccal zonation in the one present age

93. Lack of correlation of most radiometric “ages” with assumed paleontologic “ages”

94. Absence of meteorites in geological column

95. Absence of hail imprints in geological column, despite abundance of fossil ripple-marks and raindrop imprints

96. Evidence of man's existence during earliest of geologic “ages” (e.g., human footprints in Cambrian, Carboniferous, and Cretaceous formations)

97. Similar structural features (rifts, faults, folds, thrusts, etc.) in rocks of all “ages”

98. Absence of evidence of drainage systems in sediments of any “ages” except the most recent

99. Hydraulic evidence of rapid deposition of each stratum and of continuous formation of every sequence of strata, with no worldwide time gap between any formation and another above it

100. Numerous modern sightings of probable remains of Noah's ark at about 15,000 feet elevation in ice cap on Mount Ararat

From The Genesis Record by Henry M. Morris (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1976), pp. 683-686.