AGE OF EARTH AND THE ICE AGE (6)

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6 – Writing and Technology: Did Mankind have to Start from Scratch?

1 – Introduction
2 – To Use or not to Use the Strict Chronology Version
3 – How Genesis Genealogies were Abridged
4 – Thread of History not Lost in the Post-Flood World
5 – Examination of the Genesis Chronology
6 – Writing and Technology: Did Mankind have to Start from Scratch?
7 – The Ice Age
8 – Conclusion

The fact that writing was well known to Noah and his sons marks a significant aspect of life in those early years of discovery and exploration in the new world on which they set forth. However, modern academia, in line with its assumption of evolutionary development, has proposed that it took mankind, starting from some kind of primitive state, a great length of time to learn writing and other aspects of technology.

But this does not provide us with a very helpful or accurate understanding of this period in human history. The first settlers after the Flood were well educated in writing and possessed a good deal of skill in technology. For example, Noah certainly did not have to invent the wheel; he surely made use of it in the great work of constructing the ark.

Now it is true that, as smaller tribes split off from the main branches of civilization, they would have lost some of the skills that belonged to their original groups. Probably it is the archeological remains of these more “primitive” descendants (not ancestors) that have led scientists to believe that mankind in those early days had to learn writing from scratch. But in reality, this is evidence of tribes branching out and migrating and in the process losing some of the knowledge and skills that were kept intact in more settled or civilized areas.

And many of these same tribes still exist in many nations of today’s world. Highly advanced portions of a  population live in the same nation as other groups of people who exist in what would be considered primitive conditions – only because long ago they had lost many of the skills and technology of the parent groups from which they had branched away.

So, is it necessary to think that there had to be a vast age of time to allow mankind the space he needed to learn enough about technology before he could get to the point of establishing civilizations? And enough about writing so that recorded history could begin? This hardly seems to be the case. Noah and his sons already possessed these skills. And since their lifetimes were quite long, they had plenty of time to educate their offspring in those skills as well.

Mankind did not need to learn from scratch skills of language, writing, or technology – which means the Genesis chronologies do not need to be stretched unreasonably to accommodate a theorized gigantic learning curve from a primitive state to a non-primitive one. We only need to allow some time for the period of growth and development that had taken place before Abraham made his journeys through the Mid East.

But it is easy to think otherwise. If one thought that before civilization began there was no written recorded history, he or she would naturally think that a good deal of time was required to learn the skills and technology necessary for civilization to begin. And that is why scientists and historians who don’t understand/appreciate the sacred accounts about the Flood and the survival of Noah and his sons, have theorized a long age of time prior to the rise of civilization. The same goes for the lack of understanding or acceptance of the creation of humankind. If one thought humans had to evolve or develop from ape to primitive state, then of course, any such theory would have to propose a long stretch of time to learn language, writing, and technical skills.

In the pre-Flood age those skills of language, writing, and technology were learned, of course, from scratch. The people then may have had help from angelic beings to help them get started. Whatever the case was, there is no real way to know exactly how mankind picked up these skills during that pre-Flood age. But since Adam and Eve were created as fully developed and intelligent beings, it probably did not take a long time for them to learn. And it should be stressed here too that there is no real science to back up the claim that primitive ape-men even existed, nor that they had to develop these skills over vast periods of time. (Once more, posts 4D and 4E from the series called Retrieving Mankind’s Lost Heritage will explain more fully this issue of ape-men and missing links.)

There can be little doubt that the Genesis record is a written one, the original, from which several oral versions arose. Perhaps the earliest non-Biblical account of the Flood was the Gilgamesh epic written, during the era of the Sumerian civilization in Mesopotamia, probably the first civilization to arise after the Flood (in about 3000 BC). In it the hero, Gilgamesh (who also happened to be one of the Sumerian kings), meets one of the survivors of the Flood. Several details have been added or changed, and several details follow the Biblical version.

Now if it is true that Gilgamesh met Noah or one of his sons, then the date of the Flood would be less than 500 years before the rise of Sumeria. (Noah lived 350 years after the Flood and Shem 502 years according to Genesis 9:28, 11:10-11.)

To account for the distortions in the Gilgamesh epic, there must have been a significant passage of time, more probably than the small amount of time that a strict interpretation of the Genesis chronology would allow. At the same time, however, the passage of time between the Flood and the recording of the Gilgamesh epic cannot be stretched too far. The longer time a legend is passed on by word-of-mouth before being written down, the more inaccurate it becomes – and the more influenced by the culture of the particular society which is trying to preserve it. If too much time passes, the legend is apt to get lost or distorted almost beyond recognition.

It was common practice amongst the ancient kings to leverage their nation’s epic history in such a way as to confer divine status on themselves; and as a result distortions in the epic accounts appeared fairly quickly. For this reason, and due to the passage of time, the Gilgamesh Epic got distorted to some degree. Nevertheless, it is accurate enough for us to conclude that the Flood could not have happened too long before the Sumerians recorded their oral version of it.

Continue to Chapter 7: The Ice Age

This Post Has One Comment

  1. sam

    Interesting! Could you send me a pdf of this section ‘AGE OF EARTH AND THE ICE AGE’ please John?
    GBY!

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