Amid the debate over Hollywood’s version of the Noah story, scientists in the United Kingdom have concluded the idea of a ship containing animal species and floating through a worldwide flood is possible.
“You don’t think of the Bible necessarily as a scientifically accurate source of information, so I guess we were quite surprised when we discovered it would work,” said Thomas Morris, 22, a student from Chelmsford who participated in the evaluation.
“We’re not proving that it’s true, but the concept would definitely work,” he said.
The results of the study were reported by the London Daily Mail.
The report said a group of fourth-year master’s students from the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Leicester, using the dimensions in the Bible of 300 cubits by 50 cubits by 30 cubits, determined that Noah’s Ark would have floated with two of every animal on Earth inside.
The report said the students’ findings were released in a paper for the Journal of Physics Special Topics, a project of the school’s Department of Physics and Astronomy.
The Daily Mail said it was a separate matter whether nor not all of the animals would fit inside an Ark of the Bible’s dimensions. The physics students, the paper said, were simply calculating the Ark’s buoyancy.
Larry Stone, whose book “Noah: The Real Story” is a response to the new film, said studying the Ark and the Flood is “fun” because the Bible gives us very few details other than its size of 450 feet long by 75 feet wide by 45 feet high.
“We are left to figure out how Noah could have done most things. No one can say how many animals were on the Ark or how Noah fed them. No one knows. But we can say what these students said, ‘the concept would definitely work,” he said.
A cubit in the Bible is considered to be about 18 inches, the length of a man’s forearm.
Stone said the students based their calculations on an estimate Henry Morris and John Whitcomb made 50 years ago in ‘The Genesis Flood’ of 35,000 animals.
Researcher John Woodmorappe, meanwhile, has concluded that there would not have to be more than 16,000 animals. And Georgia Purdom says there would not have to be more than 2,000 to 3,000 animals.
“The key is what God means by ‘after their kind,’” Stone said. “Did Noah have to take two terriers, two pit bulls and two yellow Labradors or just two animals representing the dog family?”
Stone explained that while such research is interesting, there are many more questions.
“What did Noah feed the animals? Was there proper ventilation? What did Noah do with all the waste generated by the animals? How did Noah feed the animals? How did the animals get to the Ark? And there are answers to each one – not answers that say, ‘This is how Noah did do it,’ but answers that say, ‘This is how Noah could have done it … and, yes, the concept would definitely work.’”
The teacher, Mervyn Roy, told the Daily Mail the aim of the module is for the students to learn about peer review and scientific publishing.
“The students are encouraged to be imaginative with their topics, and find ways to apply basic physics to the weird, the wonderful and the everyday,” he sid.
The Hollywood project by Darren Aronofsky is a $130 million epic that collected about $43 million in opening weekend revenue.
It carries a disclaimer at the start stating it deviates from biblical truths.
But “Noah: The Real Story” includes everything you wanted to know about Noah, the Flood, the animals, the Ark and even the search for the Ark today.
For centuries, American monks, Russian soldiers, German scientists, an English politician, an American astronaut and a “Baywatch” star have looked for it.
He noted the script for “Noah” was “not written to cater to evangelical Christians.”
“It was written by two self-described ‘not very religious Jewish guys’ from New York City. The story written by Darren Aronofsky and Ari Handel first appeared in a French-language graphic novel with a six-armed giant rock-angel on the cover. Noah was described by ‘Slashfilm’ as a ‘Mad Max-style warrior.’ The movie was written for an audience that loves graphic novels and ‘Mad Max’ (a 1979 Australian dystopian action film). There was then a huge effort to retrofit this movie to cater to evangelical Christians, but in the end, the Aronofsky story won out – and it’s a story that distorts the real point of the Bible’s account of Noah.”
Filled with fascinating stories, images, controversial details and thorough research, “Noah: The Real Story” answers many questions and includes Noah’s secret for surviving the end of the world.
Stone is also the author of “The Story of the Bible,” named one of the 10 best Christian books of the year, and “Women of the Bible.” He is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute and the University of Iowa School of Journalism.
For media wishing an interview with author Larry Stone, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.