Thursday, May 29, 2008

Lloyd Bailey on 'The Ambiguity of the Word “Flood”'

Lloyd Bailey in his Smyth&Helwys commentary:
Among the Mesopotamians with whom Israel’s ancestors had once lived (Gen 11:27-28; Josh 24:2), the word for “flood” (abûbu) could be used in two senses: (1) for a great deluge comparable with the biblical flood at the time of Noah; and (2) for a destructive “flood” of foreigners who had swept through and decimated the homeland. It is possible, therefore, that much later Judeans in exile to Babylonia (6th century BC) would hear the story of Noah’s flood and think of their own exile in similar terms: both events were the result of human sinfulness and both had the potential to provide for a new beginning.


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