How did Noah get that many animals on the ark?

Question:

I don’t mean to catch you by surprise, but I have a question about the ark. When I ask Christians they just say that I have to believe and no one can explain this question. How did Noah get all the varying species on the Ark? I find it hard to believe that Noah could fit that many animals on the ark and feeding them would be nearly impossible. Can you explain this to me?

Answer:

The Bible does not say that Noah stored 2 of every species, it says 2 of each kind (Genesis 6:20). That may sound like I’m arguing semantics, but it is a very significant difference. An example of this would be dogs. It is a fact that all dogs come from a common ancestor (the dingo I believe) and it is also a fact that if you leave dogs to interbreed they will return to the common ancestor. It is only by selective breeding (preventing nature from running its course) that new breeds emerge. There may be hundreds of dog breeds but dogs are a single kind. The same is true for pigeons, livestock and every other kind.

Land dwelling creatures and what has breath are the only creatures taken on the ark. The ark was 3 floors deep and almost two football fields long. Estimations are that there was enough room on the ark for 125,000 sheep. In our present world there are 18,000 species known that would qualify for a trip on the ark. Even if we doubled that to make room for extinct species that may have been around in Noah’s day, we would still only have 36,000 species. If we double that to take two of each kind, that would be 72,000 animals. The average size would have been much smaller than a sheep. However, it would be unnecessary to take 2 of each species, you would only need 2 of each kind. This would greatly reduce the number of animals on the ark. But even if each species were represented, there would be ample room to spare. However, the Bible calls for 2 of each kind, not each species. But whether God chose each species or each kind and the species are variants of each kind, the ark still accommodates the numbers.

As far as feeding each animal, that is also unnecessary. Observe wild animals during storms. Do you ever see birds flying and singing during a violent storm? Animals naturally find shelter and become dormant during adverse conditions.

I don’t think these types of questions should ‘catch a Christian by surprise’. If the scriptures are true, all evidence should point to God and observable evidence should agree with scripture. That does not mean that Bible critics will agree with scripture nor does it mean that critics viewing the same facts will draw the same assumptions. It does mean that we as Christians can be confident that true science and honestly represented facts will agree with the Bible. I know that some avoid the facts because they are afraid that it may undermine their faith. However, if we truly believe God is real and the Bible is His Word, we have no reason to avoid the truth. Either the Bible is true, or it is not. I believe it is true, therefore I search out both sides of the argument to get the full picture.

The fear factor works both ways. I have engaged many atheists who are afraid to look at the evidence unless it is filtered through atheist resources. They never see the whole picture. From my own observations I have found that when the issue is honestly examined by reading well documented arguments from both sides of the issue, the whole picture always validates the Bible.

Eddie Snipes
6/2007

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