[quote=Mercurius]1) One MUST believe that some catastrophic event led to the death of all HUMAN beings on EARTH other than Noah and his family. That is what scripture says and what the Church and Fathers have always taught.
- IF it was a LOCAL flood then we must believe that HUMAN beings, at that point in time, had NOT spread all over the Globe and thus were killed in the flood.
Yes, this is key.
Those proposing local floods and “allegorical” dimensions of Noah’s ark are either not Catholic or not troubled enough to bother to believe what the faith teaches and what the Bible says.
It is of note that, throughout the Bible (I don’t have one open with me right now, but the verses should not be hard to find), there is constant reference to the fact that this flood wiped out “every living thing on the face of the Earth.”
Unless you subscribe to the more-unlikely idea, as Mercurius stated, that the whole of the rest of the Earth had not even been populated, one must accept that this flood encompassed more than a “local” area.
This problem highlights 1 important point:
The Church, in my opinion, really needs to make a definitive statement–or at least something MORE definitive–about these matters where faith and science clash. I’ve seen fantastic expositions of exactly how the Ark’s dimensions could fit every animal, how the Earth could have been repopulated in such a short time, etc. I’ve seen equally fine explanations of the local flood theory.
But theories about matters of the origins of the known universe and the results of Original Sin and God’s covenant with man are worthless. More than theory is needed. What is needed is actual teaching, something definite, something clear, and then we will not need 15 threads every day with faithful Catholics all over the theoretical globe about this sort of thing.
Here’s hoping that one of the cardinals reads Catholic Answers and will put forth a suggestion to define this. Unlikely, but possible.