How many animals of every kind did boatbuilder Noah take on the ark?
Your answer is probably 2, based on the Sunday School lesson you were taught or the Children’s Bible stories book your parent read to you, both based on Genesis 6:19-22.
19And of every living thing, of all flesh, you shall bring two of every kind into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female. 20Of the birds according to their kinds, and of the animals according to their kinds, of every creeping thing of the ground according to its kind, two of every kind shall come in to you, to keep them alive. 21Also take with you every kind of food that is eaten, and store it up; and it shall serve as food for you and for them.’ 22Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him.
Sounds like the matter is settled. “Noah did this; he did all that God commanded.” And yet, the next thing we read makes it seem God’s previous conversation with Noah did not occur. This time the Lord tells Noah to take SEVEN pairs of CLEAN animals into the ark. No mention of unclean animals.
Then the Lord said to Noah, ‘Go into the ark, you and all your household, for I have seen that you alone are righteous before me in this generation. 2Take with you seven pairs of all clean animals, the male and its mate; and a pair of the animals that are not clean, the male and its mate; 3and seven pairs of the birds of the air also, male and female, to keep their kind alive on the face of all the earth.
Like with many other stories in the Bible, we have more than one account and the accounts “don’t add up.”
How ironic fundamentalists are out of whack about the movie Noah not being “historically accurate,” as if the Biblical accounts about the ark and flood are historical, as if the Biblical accounts do not conflict, as if any boat could be constructed that would house two pairs of every kind of animal or seven pairs of clean animals and a pair of unclean animals.
It’s 2014. When will Christians start being honest about their book?