It has been ten days since I last posted anything. It’s that time of year, getting the kid ready for school, etc., where some things get put on the back burner. In any case, I have a little bit of time tonight to share a short post.
Just the other day, a friend who had purchased my book, The Heresy of Ham, had also made the trek to Ken Ham’s Ark Encounter, and was kind enough to send me quite a picture: my book had arrived! Needless to say, I am simply going to have to put that picture in a frame. If anyone else happens to visit the Ark Encounter, I would love it if you sent me a similar picture as well!
At this point, though, what else really can be said about Ken Ham’s Ark, or highly dubious claims of young earth creationism regarding science, Church history, and the Bible? Over this past year, I’ve written over 80 posts on Ken Ham and young earth creationism, I’ve now written a book about it…what else can be said?
Well, for this post, I thought I’d elaborate on something that I briefly mentioned in one of my posts about my visit to the Ark Encounter: let’s revisit Ham’s speculation about Noah’s waste removal system that he developed for the ark.
If you visit the Ark Encounter, you’ll see a lot of “explanatory notes” next to many of the exhibits, describing what things “could have” been like, or how Noah “might have” done this or that, or what “probably” was the case. In other words, to support his claim that there really was a giant ark built by a man 4,000 years ago that housed thousands of animals, including dinosaurs, for about a year, Ken Ham resorts to imaginative speculation and, well, fiction.
- How did Noah know how to build a giant boat? He obviously went to Shipwright School in the pre-flood world.
- How could he alone have built such an Ark? He didn’t—he hired pagan workers.
- And getting down to some practical matters, how was Noah, his wife, his three sons and three daughters-in-law able to deal with all that animal excrement for about year? Simple, Noah’s son Ham designed an ingenious waste-removal system for the Ark. And, as you can see, it is apparently elephant-powered.
All of that is admittedly highly imaginative, but let’s cut to the chase—none of it is actually biblical.
The History of…the Methane Digester?
To be clear, Ham’s ingenious waste removal system was not drawn up 4,000 years ago by Noah’s son. It was drawn up by another Ham, back around 2012. But in addition to this “waste removal system,” Ken Ham thought up another device that Noah and his sons could have invented. On the Ark Encounter website, there is an article from August 24, 2012 that describes how Noah and his sons were able to deal with all the piles of manure that would obviously quickly mount up on the Ark with thousands of animals.
This short article mentions that Noah and sons could have obviously dumped it overboard, or perhaps used it a compost to enrich the plants that they had brought on board, or maybe Noah just let it all pile up on the bottom deck.
But then the article proposes something quite…ingenious. They could have developed a “methane digester.” All they would have needed for such a device was “a simple airtight container to hold the manure, the proper bacteria, and a way of piping the resulting bio-gas to places where it could perform useful work—like a heating, cooking, and lighting inside the ship.”
It goes on to speculate that they could have used “hollow reeds” from the rubber tree to act as the gas pipes, and that these pipes could have also provided “reliable gaslight” to illuminate the interior of the Ark—after all, the inner recesses of the Ark must have been pretty dark!
The article ends by saying that the Ark was designed 4,450 years ago, “when mankind was still highly intelligent (Noah’s ancestor, Adam, possessed a nearly perfect brain as God created him), and Noah could easily have mastered this simple technology.”
That’s quite a claim, isn’t it? Adam possessed a “nearly perfect brain”? I don’t remember that being said anywhere in the Bible. I do remember, though, that the early Church Father Irenaeus wrote a book back in the second century, entitled, Against Heresies, in which he clearly states that one of the heretical teachings of the Gnostics of day was that they claimed Adam was “perfect.”
It’s all quite fascinating. If you go to the Ark Encounter and read the exhibits, you should come away with a curious feeling. Think about this: aside from the Ark itself, and the names of Noah, Shem, Japheth, and Ham, what else in the Ark Encounter is actually supported by the Bible?
Answer? Not much…no Shipwright schools, no methane digesters, no dinosaurs, no “one ice age that lasted for 200 years immediately after the flood, right before the Tower of Babel.”
In order to try to convince people that the Flood Story is a historical account, Ken Ham has resorted to imaginative fictions as his “evidence,” and he has made claims that are verified in Church history as being heretical.
And the Saddest Part…
When you think about it, the saddest part of all this is that I am sure Ken Ham would attempt to convince everyone that posts like this one, or books like The Heresy of Ham, are “attacks on the Bible,” and are “mocking biblical authority.”
Let me be clear: the exact opposite is the case. The only one making a mockery of the Bible is, in actuality, Ken Ham. The only one undermining the actual message of stories like Noah’s Flood is, in actuality, Ken Ham. The only one actually distorting the stories of Genesis 1-11, with all his talk of perfect brains, shipwright schools, methane digesters, and dinosaurs, is in actuality, Ken Ham.
By insisting that the flood story in Genesis 6-9 has to be historically accurate in order to be true, Ham has ended up focusing on fictitious speculations, and has actually drawn people’s attention away from the inspired message of the story of the flood, and to logical absurdities that make God’s Word look ridiculous.
No, posts like this and books like The Heresy of Ham are not attacking or mocking the Bible; they are defending the integrity of the Bible against people like Ken Ham who are setting it up as a mockery in the eyes of the world.
No matter how many creative ways Ken Ham thinks up how to shovel excrement to support his claims, the fact remains that shoveling excrement is all he is really doing.
I’ll take the Bible instead.