O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

I am on my way out the door for Sunday Worship, but I got to thinking about this last night. I am not sure if there is anything there but I figured I would throw it out there.

Noah was commanded to bring the "animals" on the Ark, I know some take that as other human beings (Gentile nations perhaps). I am not convinced of this interpretation but I do see the argument.

If Noah was to bring these other "Gentiles" on board before judgment, then you could possibly take that story as prophetic of the way things would work before the destruction of the old world in AD 70. The righteous would bring in the Gentiles (to salvation) before Covenant Judgment began.

I am still working on where this would lead, but I would love to hear any thoughts or comments. I would also like to get some links or material on the idea that the "animals" were other humans. I have only studied that argument from the surface. I would like to study that idea more in depth.

Blessings, and Happy Valentines Day.

Micah Martin

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Micah, what are you doing, trying to start some sort of controversy? :)

Just a few thoughts:

I think the flood story is told in an apocalyptic style, however it is a real, historical event which is what makes the text difficult to dissect. Certainly there are typological elements: the ark prefigures baptism per 1 Peter 3. There are also prophetic elements: Genesis 5:29 is a clear prophecy of Christ coming through Noah (No, contrary to what Mike Bennett says, the curse on the ground--the Genesis 3 curse of sin and death--was not removed at the flood. That assertion is a blatant offense to the cross and the gospel.); and Genesis 9:1f is clearly a restatement of the dominion of the gospel prophesied in Genesis 1:26f. Because there are so many parallels between the promises made to Adam and Noah, which both point to the cross and gospel of Christ for their ultimate fulfillment, we need to read these contexts the same way. I believe we should be reading them as prophetic, much the way we read the other Old Testament prophets. No one would suggest that Adam and Noah were not real, historical people, and that real historical events are referenced in these accounts, but the question remains: are these accounts historical narrative or are they prophetic/apocalyptic set in a specific historical context? As I have heard Tim state to bring it to a fine point: "It's about what is primary." And what is primary in both the "creation" and "flood" accounts is the promise of the coming Redeemer.

One can hardly read the references in the flood account to beasts and creeping things without thinking of other prophetic contexts which use identical language to refer to Gentiles being subdued by the gospel. And again, the prophecy of the dominion of the gospel is a primary, if not *the* primary focus of the flood account. I do not believe for a minute that "having dominion over beasts and creeping things and the fish of the sea" has anything to do with hunting or fishing. Not in Genesis 1, and not in Genesis 9.

At this juncture, since I tend to believe the ark was a real boat made out of real wood (the hyperbolic elements of the account notwithstanding) I also tend to believe there were real animals brought on board.....and that the story was given to us as a physical representation of greater spiritual realities. It is not necessary for me to believe that included *every* species of animal in existence any more than it is necessary for me to believe the waters covered *all* of planet earth, to believe the story to be *true*.

Just a thought...when I have heard it suggested the animals on the ark were really gentiles, it is apparently to propose that this would be a way of saving these other people groups from the flood (?) But since the flood was a covenantal and therefore geographically localized judgment, the surrounding Gentiles didn't need saving. Furthermore, an ark full of people, even a number corresponding to "two of every kind," would not be enough to account for the number of people we see just a short time later at Babel. Even YEC's admit they have to break form (oops!) and put a gap of a couple of thousand years into their otherwise literal reading of the genealogies to make that work. (We discussed this in our first podcast with Tim.)

Again, it is a difficult text, because *no doubt* the command immediately following the flood to "be fruitful and multiply" and "have dominion" is a prophecy of the kingdom of Jesus Christ. No doubt. And YET...there was a real flood, a real ark, and real animals sacrificed upon a real altar. The "difficulty" I suspect largely comes from our modern western cultural mindset, and it is entirely tenable to me that a resident of the ancient near east wouldn't have any difficulty with it whatsoever.

I guess controversy runs in the family! :)

I really appreciate your insights. I think I agree with most, if not all, of what you said. I do believe the flood was local. I don't think that would preclude taking Gentiles on board. There may have been other "nations" or "tribes" living in close proximity to Noah that were not in Covenant.

I agree that this is a hard passage to dissect because it is prophetic / apocalyptic, while at the same time set in a historical or mythical (to borrow N.T. Wright's definition of myth) story. One of the key insights for me to the idea that the "animals" where people is in Gen. 9:5 "And for your lifeblood I will surely demand and accounting. I will demand and accounting from every ANIMAL. And from each MAN, too, I will demand and accounting for the life of his fellow man." Under a strict YEC reading that means when a lion eats a handicapped deer, God is going to judge that lion. Not the point of the Bible in my opinion.

I just find it interesting that whenever judgment comes to Gospel goes to the Gentiles. Either Israel was sent into captivity (forced to go preach the gospel to the Gentiles) or the sign of Jonah (Gentile repentance) preceded the coming judgment. This is just another story where the pattern fits perfectly with the rest of the Bible if we get out of our 21st century materialistic worldview. (Especially if it can be proven that the "animals" on the ark were Gentiles.)

Thanks again for your input.

Genesis 9:5 is indeed intriguing, to your point. You wrote:

"Under a strict YEC reading that means when a lion eats a handicapped deer, God is going to judge that lion. Not the point of the Bible in my opinion.", it's not. :)
Were the animals real in Noah's ark? Ask yourself the same question in regard to the 10 commandments made of stone in the ark of the covenant. Were THEY real?

Just because THINGS typify spiritual realities does not mean that the things did not or do not exist in the physical world.

There is a thin line between the natural world and the spiritual world. Hebrews clearly talks about the shadow and the reality of the temple. But preterists certainly do believe that the objects that prefigured the realities of heaven existed in the temple.

I can come to no other conclusion other than that things which exist and have existed are all part of God's kingdom. Just because we use those objects doesn't mean there isn't something even MORE real in heaven awaiting our arrival and our discovery! It fills me with anticipation. 1 Cor. 2:9
Thanks Doug,

I appreciate your insight and observations. You always have a great perspective on things.



It sounds like you are applying 1 Corinthians 2:9 to something yet unseen, and unrevealed:

1Co 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

Paul is quoting Isaiah there. And he is clearly stating to his first century audience that what Isaiah prophesied that was yet unseen to him,had been revealed to them:

1Co 2:10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

Nothing in heaven is "awaiting our arrival." We have already come:

Heb 12:22 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels,
Heb 12:23 to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect,

Don't disagree that we have come to Zion. But I was referring to our glorification. Yes, you are right, God has revealed them to us.

But would you not agree that we all have different levels of "revealing"? That is, not all, even those with God's spirit, have seen all. So I assume there are still things to be revealed when we are glorified with Christ. I have to think there are things yet to come to teach us in eternities future. So, the hidden things of God are revealed as time unfolds.

Now we see in part, and now we know in part....
Doug, we will be learning throughout eternity, as the riches of God are infinitely deep and past finding out. But I would disagree that our glorification is future, as the Bible makes it synonymous with our salvation.

Let me ask you this question: What do you mean when you suggest that "glorification" is future? Is it a process, or a one time event? Is it something ongoing, that will never be complete; or is there a point in time that you believe it will fulfilled?

Also, you quoted from 1 Corinthians 13: "now we see in part." Here is the context:

1Co 13:8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
1Co 13:9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part.
1Co 13:10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
1Co 13:11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
1Co 13:12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

So the question is, if you are applying "now" in the above context to yourself today, when will "then" occur for you? What event are you looking for to fulfill "then I shall know just as I am known?"

"So the question is, if you are applying "now" in the above context to yourself today, when will "then" occur for you? What event are you looking for to fulfill "then I shall know just as I am known?""

For me, the "event" I am looking for is the end of this mortal body. If I am mistaken in this assumption, please enlighten me. But for eternity to commence, I have to shed this body and take on a new, eternal body. When I am in that state, I will "know just as I am known"

Tell me, if your view disagrees with this, what is YOUR version of what happens after death?
Doug, I have got good news for you:

Eternity has commenced!

And it continues beyond this physical life. That's why it's called *eternal life*. Do you not believe you have eternal life now? You are waiting for it to "commence?"

So at this "event" you look will be infused with a "knowing" that you don't have now? Will this be an instantaneous transfer of knowledge, in your view? And what scripture do you use to connect this knew level of knowledge with the event of physical death? Something that is of paramount importance, I might add, is that you absolutely must point to an Old Testament prophecy which identifies the connection, in order to substantiate your position that a "commencement" of knowledge or some other redemptive blessing is accomplished by the event of your physical death.
Hi Doug,
Ward Fenley is one of the few if not only "Full Preterist" to write an article on your question.

I found it helpful and hope you will too.

The Afterlife from the Preterist Perspective
By Ward Fenley

Hi Micah,

I have been contemplating this idea for a very long time. The more I read apocalyptic literature, the more I realize that this may indeed be a real possibility. In 1 Enoch, one sees animals becoming men, and men becoming angels (resurrected state) after entering the holy place behind the veil. Colors and animal types are significant to the narrative. 1 Enoch portrays white cattle as righteous men and black cattle as sinful. Heifers are clearly portrayed as female women such as Eve. The color red denotes martyrs, while white shows righteousness etc. And yet, look at how prominent the term "cattle" is used within Genesis. Do a word search for "cattle" in Genesis to see just how often the word is used or emphasized. It's astounding when compared with 1 Enoch and the way he uses these same terms. The book of Jubilees also re-affirms these same ideas.

Apocalyptic literature had been around long before Jesus ever showed up on the scene, and it gives us a precedence from the ancients, that they did in fact use this type of metaphor in their writing style. These writings were widely read and known in Jesus' day. Enoch is referred to, or quoted, 128 times in the New Testament. In my opinion, 1 Enoch is central to the New Testament. These things are absolutely not new! We even see this same style in our Bibles such as the famous "fox lying down with the lamb" (Jew/clean vs. Gentile/unclean) description in Isaiah. There are many such examples throughout God's Word. I've just created a striking graphic demonstrating these close associations that I hope to demonstrate in my upcoming lecture.

These descriptions seem to be a type of hierarchy, or social structure, that is communicated in these "animal" type terms.

1 Enoch describes the fallen "Watchers" (i.e. angels/messengers) using the knowledge of God apart from wisdom to teach men the ways of wickedness rather than righteousness. It is interesting to note that the priests were to "watch" over the people and lead them into the ways of righteousness. Is it possible that these fallen angels were those priests who desired to use God's knowledge for self serving power over the people? I think this is answered by Jesus himself when he called the rulers of his day the "offspring of the wicked one" that was in the Garden. It is no coincidence that 1 Enoch describes "bloodshed on earth: and the earth cries out", and Genesis describes the slaying of Abel, and his blood cries out from the earth. 1 Enoch describes "The angels bringing secrets of art and technology", and Genesis describes Cain’s descendants discovering arts and technologies. Enoch says that "Azazel carries a burden of sin into the wilderness, but is not killed", and yet Genesis describes Cain carrying a burden of sin into the wilderness, but is not killed. It is my theory that these men were given names by God that reflect they're heavenly association as they serve him in the Garden Temple of God. For this reason, Jesus has a "name" above all names within this priestly structure. Enoch describes himself as a scribe priest who becomes an angel (Metatron) and prophesies about the coming day of the Lord in which these wicked ones would be destroyed.

In Cain we see the grain offering priest, and in Abel we see the blood sacrifice priest. One is fallen and the other righteous and slain. One had pure motives, and the other did not.

I very much see Genesis as an apocalyptic/prophetic form of literature composed in a Chiasm (musical structure) making it easy for children to remember. Revelation follows this same apocalyptic/prophetic structure.

For far too long Christians have assumed that Genesis is speaking of science rather than a covenant relationship with his people. In this, they draw wrong conclusions based upon cultural misunderstanding.

The "heavenly host" (i.e. sun, moon, and stars) are the royal servants of the Lord in His Garden Temple court. They have a special duty to watch over the people and lead them to the Tree of Life (wisdom). The lesson in Genesis is that knowledge apart from wisdom leads to spiritual darkness and separation from God. This is the Tree of Knowledge of good and evil. Knowledge with wisdom is eternal life (Tree of Life). There is so much here that I would like to share concerning this, but time simply doesn't permit.

Anyway, I hope this helps a little.

--Mark Chiacchira


Olivet Discourse Movie

How the Olivet Discourse was fulfilled in the first century.
Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21
Riley O'Brien Powell



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