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Was the ark built by amateurs?

Perhaps you have heard someone say something like this, “The Titanic was built by professionals but the ark was built by amateurs.” What they mean is that sometimes people without professional training or skills can do a better job than those who do have training.

But is the statement true? Was Noah just an amateur when God told him to build the ark? We really don’t know because the Bible tells us nothing of Noah’s occupation before the flood. It is possible that he was a professional shipbuilder and that God gave him this occupation to prepare him to build the ark.

Tim Chaffey and K. Marie Adams have written the Remnant Trilogy, a fictional account of Noah’s life before the flood, and they tell of Noah becoming an apprentice to a shipbuilder at the age of 40 and devoting his life to this job. When God finally told him to start working on the ark he was well prepared to carry out this task.

The Bible tells us very little about what life was like then, so naturally most of their work in fiction, but they are careful not to contradict anything the Bible actually says. At the end of each book of the trilogy there is a section in which they discuss what the Bible says.

If you want to read this series you can buy it here:

https://answersingenesis.org/store/product/noah-remnant-trilogy/

And yet even if Noah was a professional there is a sense in which he and his family were amateurs. The word “amateur” is derived from the French word for “love”, meaning someone who engages in an activity because of love, not just because of what he can gain from it. All Christians should be amateurs in this sense. We should serve God because we love him, not just for the rewards we will receive.

Amateur shipbuilders

Some of you may have heard this statement: “The ark was built by amateurs, the Titanic was built by professionals.”  Of course the ark saved the human race and many kinds of animals from extinction while the Titanic hit an iceberg and sank during its maiden voyage.  The meaning of the saying is that those who obey God can accomplish more good than well trained professionals who rely on their own wisdom.

While I agree with the intent of this statement I wonder just how true it is.  Was the ark built by amateurs?  We are told nothing about how Noah made his living before building the ark.  It is possible that he and his sons were professional shipbuilders.  If this is so, then the ark and the Titanic were both built by professionals. Read the rest of this entry

Last minute conversions

When Jesus was being crucified his enemies added insults to the injuries he was suffering by challenging him to prove the claims he had made about himself by coming down from the cross.  Even the two criminals who were being crucified with him joined in.

And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads and saying, “Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days,save yourself, and come down from the cross!”

So also the chief priests with the scribes mocked him to one another, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.”

Those who were crucified with him also reviled him.

Mark 15:29-32

A short time later one of the criminals experienced a change of heart.

One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!”

But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.”

And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

Luke 23:39-43

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Ark Encounter

As many of you know, the organization Answers in Genesis is building a full size replica of Noah’s ark.  The ark is almost completed and is scheduled to be open to visitors on July 7.  You can learn the details at arkencounter.com.

Most people don’t believe a worldwide flood occurred.  In his second letter Peter foretold this denial.

They will say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.”

For they deliberately overlook this fact, that the heavens existed long ago, and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God, and that by means of these the world that then existed was deluged with water and perished.
2 Peter 3:4-6

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Doublethink

The word “doublethink” was first used by George Orwell in his novel 1984.  It means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.

Orwell invented the word but the practice existed long before he was born.  First Kings 18 describes the contest between Elijah and the prophets of Baal to determine who is the true God.  Here is what Elijah said to the people.

And Elijah came near to all the people and said, “How long will you go limping between two different opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him.”
1 Kings 18:21

Some of the people practiced doublethink by worshipping both Baal and the LORD.  God condemned this practice and demanded that they choose one side or the other.

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Abiogenesis, creation, and natural selection

How did life originate?  Most people believe that it began with a process called abiogenesis,  the development of living organisms from nonliving mater.  According to this belief a very simple life form came into existence and over millions of year its descendants changed through the process of evolution to produce the large variety of life that exists today.

Not everyone believes in abiogenesis and evolution.  Some people believe the Bible’s account of how life originated; it was created by God only a few thousand years ago.

Believers in abiogenesis and creation both agree that new varieties of life are constantly being produced by a process called natural selection.  An examination of how this process works might show whether abiogenesis or creation is the most likely starting point for it.

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