Sunday, February 19, 2006

Discussing Creationism Part II

In this discussion, I want to narrow it down to only 2 questions regarding Noah's ark (Genesis 6-9):
  1. What was the size of the ark?
  2. How many animals could have fit into the ark? Biblically, we are not told except that there were 7 pairs (male and female) of each clean animal and a male and female of each unclean animal as well as 7 pairs of each fowl.
I am looking for factual answers to these questions from both Evolutionists, Creationists and other. Please supply references (web site addresses with quotes if possible, charts, mathematical calculations, names of books, etc)
Please stick to these 2 questions, only.

For an example, I found this site called Christiananswers. net.
  1. It states that "the ark would have been at least 450 feet long [137.16 meters], 75 feet wide [22.86 meters] and 45 feet high [13.716000000000001 meters]... The total available floor space on the ark would have been over 100,000 square feet, which would be more floor space than in 20 standard-sized basketball courts.The total cubic volume would have been 1,518,000 cubic feet [462,686.4 cubic meters] --that would be equal to the capacity of 569 modern railroad stock cars."
  2. This same web page states that"Doctors Morris and Whitcomb in their classic book, "The Genesis Flood," state that no more than 35,000 individual animals needed to go on the ark. In his well documented book, Noah's Ark: A Feasibility Study, John Woodmorappe suggests that far fewer animals would have been transported upon the ark. By pointing out that the word "specie" is not equivalent to the "created kinds" of the Genesis account, Woodmorappe credibly demonstrates that as few as 2,000 animals may have been required on the ark. To pad this number for error, he continues his study by showing that the ark could easily accommodate 16,000 animals.)
    But, let's be generous and add on a reasonable number to include extinct animals. Then add on some more to satisfy even the most skeptical. Let's assume 50,000 animals, far more animals than required, were on board the ark, and these need not have been the largest or even adult specimens."

    "Remember there are really only a few very large animals, such as the dinosaur or the elephant, and these could be represented by young ones. Assuming the average animal to be about the size of a sheep and using a railroad car for comparison, we note that the average double-deck stock car can accommodate 240 sheep. Thus, three trains hauling 69 cars each would have ample space to carry the 50,000 animals, filling only 37% of the ark. This would leave an additional 361 cars or enough to make 5 trains of 72 cars each to carry all of the food and baggage plus Noah's family of eight people. The Ark had plenty of space."

Discussing Creationism Part I


Dave said...

A quick thought - ingnore size of boat and number of animals. Consider just the problem of finding the animal representatives in your own town, then move onto think about your state, your country, your continent. Then consider getting samples of species that only live on the other continents/countries (eg Australia that was only 'discovered' in the 1700's) or that were indeed only discovered last year. I could go on but if anyone believes in Noah then any facts are irrelevant as one can only have faith in the idea as any rational thought shows it to be preposterous.

Carol said...

Let's stick to answers to these questions. It is too easy to get sidetracked. I think that you would have some sites that could provide some answers.

cranky old fart said...

I thought Dave did answer you.

You have apparently found where my 16,000 number came from in the other post. Good start. Now apply some common sense to the issue.

There are millions of species. Millions. All from from 16,000 species coming off a boat, less than 6,000 years ago?

Jennifer said...

Think that there were 7 of each clean, and two of each unclean, no?
Ugh...I don't think I would have made it long on the ark. Not so much an animal lover doing good just to tolerate the two cats :D

Carol said...

Cranky Old Fart,
Don't you have any sites to contribute?
One step at a time, remember?

Of course, thank you my dear. I edited the original post to rectify this.

"Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female. Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth." Genesis 7:2-3

zeb said...

If God could create the entire universe I'm sure he could help out stuffing some animals onto a boat

Dave said...

cranky old fart said...


Now there's some critical thinking!

Sorry Zeb, but if someone is going to assert the Bible is literally true in every respect, it's gonna take more than "God did it"!

Carol said...

Thank you Dave for giving me those web pages to look at.Talk Reason
answered the questions directly:

1. This site says, that “Although the length of the unit of measurements given in the Genesis 6.15 and named cubit in the King James version is not precisely known, its approximate value, within a certain range, can be established rather reliably. In the original Hebrew text that unit of length is called an ama. Let us see how a Hebrew dictionary explains this word. In the definitive Hamilon Haivri Hamerukaz by Even-Shoshan we read: "Ama. The measure of length roughly equal the distance between the elbow and the root of the palm of an adult man." In other words, according to the quoted dictionary, the cubit of the King James version is reasonably close to one foot in the English and American system of measurements. On the other hand, some rabbinical sources maintain that an ama was closer to two feet. Hence, the value of a cubit can be reasonably estimated as being between one and two feet. To make our estimations brief, we will assume that one cubit equals 1.5 foot.”
“We read in Genesis 6.15: "The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty cubits." Hence, according to the Biblical story, the ark was about four hundred fifty feet (about 150 meters) long, seventy-five feet (about 25 meters) wide and forty-five feet (about 15 meters) high.
“It is easy to calculate that the volume of the ark would be about 55,000 cubic meters.

2. "Ignoring the weight of the ark itself, it could be loaded, barely escaping sinking, with the weight of no more than about five hundred million Newton. (Newton is the standard unit of weight used in science. Roughly, one pound is close to 4.45 Newton; on the earth surface, a mass of one kilogram weighs about 9.8 Newton). The animals gathered in the ark would have weights varying in a wide range, from a fraction of a Newton for some insects, to hundreds of thousands of Newtons for such giants as elephants and hippopotami. Just for a rough estimate, accept the average weight of an animal to be close to that of, say, a horse, which is about ten thousand Newton. Five hundred million divided by about 10,000 is close to 50,000. This is a very rough estimate of the maximum number of tightly packed animal bodies the ark could accommodate barely escaping sinking, even ignoring the weight of the ark itself and of the vast amount food to be stored in it. Accounting for food and the vessel's own weight, the maximum number of tightly packed animals bodies the ark would handle barely avoiding sinking must be estimated closer to 20,000. That is no more than about 10,000 species, if each species were represented by only one male and one female. Since animals and people needed some free volume around them to survive, a realistic estimate of the number of species the ark could support must be between several hundred and at the most a couple of thousand."

Yes, I am looking for factual answers but I don't mind Zeb of your reminder of God capabilities.

An aside to Cranky Old Fart,
I am not trying to prove that the Bible is literal in every respect.
As you have read and studied the Bible yourself, you are no doubt aware that figurative language is used in the Bible. That is an important point but right now let's just focus on these 2 specific questions regarding the creation account.

Do you have any sites to contribute regarding these questions?

Carol said...

I found another good site called Answers in Genesis
1.According to this site, "The Ark measured 300x50x30 cubits (Genesis 6:15), which is about 140x23x13.5 metres or 459x75x44 feet, so its volume was 43,500 m3 (cubic metres) or 1.54 million cubic feet. To put this in perspective, this is the equivalent volume of 522 standard American railroad stock cars, each of which can hold 240 sheep."

2.In" Woodmorappe’s book Noah’s Ark: a Feasibility Study...Woodmorappe totals about 8000 genera, including extinct genera, thus about 16,000 individual animals which had to be aboard."

cranky old fart said...


There are many many sites addressing the Ark issue from the perspectives of creationism and reality, er, science.

At the end of the day, however, you need to apply your mind and common sense to the subject. Without doing that, all you are doing is lining up books on a shelf.

Dave's first comment was the most useful of all. Go outside. Look around at all the animal species in your own town, your province, your country, your continent...millions and millions of species. Most all with unique diets and environmental needs.

Millions upon millions of unique species, all from 16,000 species on one boat, just a few thousand years ago.

Carol said...

Thanks COF but I'm on a fact finding mission right now. There are a lot of commentaries on the subject but I am more interested in finding the original data from which the theories arise.

cranky old fart said...

The "original data"?

Well, for Creationism all you need is your trusty Bible and a credulous mind.

Carol, go get a globe. Pick it up. Look at the wide, wide, world. Millions of species from the entire far-flung world come to the Middle East to cram in to one boat. Well actually just two, seven, or whatever, of each specie.

They cross huge oceans, oh wait, Pangea was only 6,000 years ago according to these folks, so this impossible migration of the chosen animals was "easier". That's right, so all these continents moved at the speed of like half a mile a year to get where they are now. But actually, our most ancient records don't show any of this continent surfing, so I guess they moved at much greater speed, well, after the animals returned to their homes of course. So these continents must have moved more like 3 miles a year or more. Look out your window. Imagine such a thing.

Just use plain old "god given" common sense, and you can see the creation myth is just that, a myth.

Accept or not the theory of evolution, but do yourself a favor and clear your 21st century mind of this 20th century b.c.e. literal creation story once and for all.

Carol said...

Give me the facts, man!

cranky old fart said...


I AM giving you facts. Read the creationist sites. Read Genesis. What I've written above is THIER SIDE.

If someone tells you the world is flat, are you just going to accept it as some alternative "fact"? This ain't rocket science, as the saying goes....

Carol said...

Oh, Cranky Old Fart,
You do live up to your name...but probably you really are just a teddy bear.

But I digress, I thought that I could get some good web page recommendations from others with calculations and such from both the Evolution and Creationism point of view. Surely, you have some that you could share? (Remember, I am only dealing with the 2 questions right now)

Mango Lane said...

To Cranky old fart:
I think a nice long nap will do you some good. `Kay?

cranky old fart said...

Dave gave you sites several sites, and you found "Answers in Genesis" which is pretty comprehensive on Creationism, with links to other sites.

What more do you want?

Books on a shelf Carol, books on a shelf.

Carol said...

Cranky Old Fart,
Although Dave,thanks again BTW, submitted 5 sites, only 1 contained answers to the questions I asked.
What more do I want?
Facts! The more the better.
Assuredly, they are not just books on the shelf.

cranky old fart said...


I went back to your original post to remind myself what "facts" you were seeking.

1. Size of the mythical ark.

Most everyone seems to agree that the Bible says it was about 450'x75'x45'. What other "fact" do you need? The size from the scientific side is O'xO'xO'. It's a myth.

2. How many animals could fit in the mythical ark?

Creationists claim anywhere from 50-32,000 animals. From the scientific side, let's go with either figure. It really doesn't much matter.

The ark event couldn't and didn't actually happen for any number of logical and scientific reasons.

Next question.

Carol said...

Thank you Cranky Old Fart,
If you want to list the scientific and logical reasons why animals could not fit into an ark or why the ark could not have been made, I am listening. Just stick to the topic.
Also, I would appreciate the sources for these ideas. If they are your own original thoughts, just let me know your reasoning and/or calculations behind them.

Anonymous said...

If the Ark was as large as tanker and made out of wood (as the Bible says), it would not float because it would be prone leaks.

cranky old fart said...


I don't know what you are trying to prove, learn, explore by this "search" for "facts".

I look forward to your moving on.

Carol said...

I will have to look into that, Anonymous.

Facts are important when searching for accuracy and the truth of a matter.

Dave said...

Carol - There really are no 'facts' to give on this subject. If anyone is even prepared to consider the possibility of there being an Ark thousands of years ago with all the worlds animals on it then facts are of no use to such a person. With the technology available today it is an impossible task.

Carol said...

Cranky Old Fart said that "The ark event couldn't and didn't actually happen for any number of logical and scientific reasons." These are the facts I want to here now from the Evolutionists.
Are you saying that it is impossible to disprove?

Dave said...

I think that I'm saying that it is so ridiculous an idea that anyone who stops and thinks for a moment would discount it. But I guess you could measure the length of time it takes a man to collect a male and female of every species from every continent? Note - at that time the known world was Europe and the middle east.

cranky old fart said...


Don't be daft. Noah just stayed at home and worked on the ark.

God called the animals to the ark, and they set off from the 4 corners of the flat earth, learning to adapt to the varying food and environments along the way.

Dave said...

COF - I know that, but there's just no convincing these people. Whatever information you put in front of them just seems to be discounted.

Corey said...

I found that info on whether a large wooden boat could float on Discovery Channel's Noah's Ark: The True Story. According to the program, they believe Noah only took native species on his small boat or raft.

Carol said...

I find it sad that anybody would discount anything without examining the possibilities from known facts and logical thinking.

You have brought the topic of the gathering of the animals before and as I said earlier let's stay on topic.

Cranky Old Fart,
I am still waiting for those logical and scientific reasons that the ark could not have happened as applied to the topic on hand, of course. I am almost ready to assume that you have none.

If that program was using the Bible as a basis, they would not have called a 450'x75'x 45' vessel a small boat or a raft considering that the ark had a window.

Corey said...

You are right. In the program, they doubt about the existence of the biblical account of the Ark. However, they believe that Noah's ark was based on Sumerian-Babylonian story of Gilgamesh.

zeb said...

Did he play for the Red Wings in 79?
Hockey sticks pound the boards in rhythm

Carol said...

Then that is the problem. They are basing their conclusions on the wrong account. (I haven't read the story of Gilgamesh but it is in my library.)
Thanks for the info.


cranky old fart said...


Gilgamesh is in your library. Unread. Surprise, surprise. Books on a shelf.

(The "Noah" story found in "The Epic
of Gilgamesh" is far more detailed than the later Hebrew version of the

By the way, you tell me how a penguin gets to the middle east and survives your boat ride. How's that for logic and science?

Corey said...

In the Non Sequitur comic strip published on February 21 shows Noah, his publisher, a cow, a dog and a cat in a crammed canoe. Noah's publisher tells Noah that he is not asking for him to lie, but to embellish the truth for the sake of marketing.

cranky old fart said...

Link for the above mentioned comic strip:

Carol said...

Cranky Old Fart,
I have many books in my library and I thank Corey for pointing out the relevence of one of them to this topic. I am not sure if they are referring to the same flood but I will take a look at the Gilgamesh account.
I am examining the sites that have been suggested to me. I think you are trying to imply that I have not.
Speaking of which, what have you read on this topic? Where are you getting your ideas from? I am still waiting...

Thanks Corey for lightening up the discussion,(inaccurate as the cartoon is. I must add).

cranky old fart said...

Where am I "getting my ideas from"? My ideas about what?

That penguins can't walk to Arabia? Do I need a source?

I'm pretty sure I can't lift up the Eifel Tower on my own. Do I need a source? I don't think a whale can tapdance. Need a source?

It's called common sense.

Carol said...

Those aren't answers to the questions I asked.

cranky old fart said...

Yes, those are the answers. You just won't discuss it or admit it.

I already said that I will take, arguendo, the fundie view on boat size and the ability to cram 50,000 animals on board. It doesn't matter.

A penguin still can't walk, or waddle, to the desert.

zeb said...

Couldn't the penguin tread water unless of course it is true that ice floats.
You gotta see "March of the Penguins" I'm starting to think they coulda made it to the desert probably looking for weapon of mass destruction.
You guys gotta lighten up.
My major is history and no matter how you spin it embelish it or slant it there has only been one history. All the argueing in the world cannot change it. If this gets any rougher I'm getting out the 300 magnum. You don't take a knife to a gunfight
ya all hear that george dubya

zeb said...

Unless you want to discuss multiple dimensions which we have the math for by the way.
Then we would have to admit to millions of parallel universes
Where are you going? The class is not over yet. I haven't given you your exam schedule
"In my father's house there are many mansions"

Carol said...

Cranky Old Fart,
Zeb actually makes a point, because penguins (and whales for that matter, tap dancers or not)are aquatic,they didn't have to be in the ark. They could survive the flood as they could swim. Only those beasts that could not survive and birds were on the ark.

We will hopefully get to discuss other items of importance but all in due time.

Dan Buddle said...

Sorry if this is under educated but...

Some problems you woudl face when loading an ark.

1: gathering the species, there are animals spread all over teh world, am i to assuem god brought over seas animals to teh ark?

2: what about smaller creatures like insects and parasites, are they included?

3: Watering, feeding, prevention of animals mauling one anotehr etc. Is it possible even with a little supernatural help to tend a bout that holds 2 of every animal?

4: how long was allocated to build this ark? what was the man power?

5: and can't we just vaugly pas every answer of to 'God did it?'

dan x

Chocomel said...

So in your original 2 questions;
1) size of the ark, and 2) how many animals could have fit in the ark? You have gotten some speculative answers. 1) The ark was about 450' long 75' wide and 45' high? As far as I know the ark has never been found so you can not get "factual answers", only speculative answers. Assuming we even know the size of a cubit that furthers the problem. The size of a forearm from someone how tall? 2) Only can speculate on this also. How can you narrow it down to “kind” for animal? The possibilities are many. There are those who think there were dinosaurs on board also. That creates another set of problems. You can only make guesses on how many animals could fit.

Anonymous said...

Just a little Bible study would show that the penguins would be on the ark. too. Penguins are considered land animals. The Bible says that everything that lived on the land had died. Also, before the flood, there was perfect weather ( with a water canopy in the atmosphere that blocked off the ultra violet rays, which is probably why ppl lived so long before the Flood), year 'round, there was a high probability that there was one huge land mass, so it wouldn't be a big deal getting the different "kinds" to the Ark, cuz there weren't different continents at that time.

Also, while the animals were on the Ark, the animals were reverted back to the state they were in when the Garden of Eden was still in existence, when animals were planteaters and didn't dread mankind. When Noah went off the Ark after the year was up, God warned Noah that the animals would (once again) dread mankind.

Also, Noah would've had plenty of builders for the Ark. It doesn't matter if everyone thought Noah and his family were nuts or not, they would've helped as long as they got paid for it.

Also, as far as the Ark being sea worthy or not... I would think that all of the builders, if they were 500+ years old like Noah, they were probably expert builders.

One more thing, the countries did not form from the continents drifting apart, but instead from the lands rising(formed the continents) and the lands sinking (formed the oceans) as mentioned in Psalms.

Something else to think about, the "fault lines"that are all around the world that are the epic centers of most of the earthquakes in the world, were probably where the water came rushing from under the ground which helped Flood the entire world. The Flood catastrophy also took away the water canopy(Gen.1), which also contributed to the higher Flood levels.

Carol, if you love the Ark story as much as I do, check out a Kent Hovind video sometime. He gives excellent info and it's scientifically sound, even if the Darwinists don't think so.