Question: How do Latter-day Saints reconcile scriptural accounts of the Flood of Noah with scientific evidence of continuous human habitation on the earth?

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Question: How do Latter-day Saints reconcile scriptural accounts of the Flood of Noah with scientific evidence of continuous human habitation on the earth?

There is scientific evidence of diversity of species, language and of continuous human habitation

Modern scientific knowledge regarding the diversity of species, language and evidence of continuous human habitation does not support the Biblical story that a global flood wiped out most life as recently as 4,400 years ago.

The following criticisms are often applied to Latter-day Saint (or traditional Christian beliefs) regarding the Flood:

  • It is claimed that LDS scriptures require Mormons to believe in a global flood, and that if LDS doctrine or leaders are fallible in their statements concerning the flood, then they must be wrong about other Church doctrines as well.
  • If Noah's Flood was not global, how do we account for Joseph Smith's claim that the Garden of Eden was located in Missouri?
  • Isn't it true that before the flood all the continents were all one land mass, since the Bible says that the earth was "divided in the days of Peleg."

Latter-day Saints believe that Noah existed, and that he built an ark to save his family from a flood, and that the flood occurred

There are a number of basic teachings which we all accept regardless of the global or local scope of the Flood:

  • There existed a prophet named Noah.
  • Noah was commanded by the Lord to construct an ark.
  • Noah warned the people of the impending deluge.
  • The Flood was a literal event which did indeed occur.
  • Noah, his family and the animals he collected were saved from the deluge.
  • The Lord made a covenant with Noah and his descendants.

Whether the Flood covered the entire earth, or whether it only covered Noah's world, makes no difference

Latter-day Saints believe that the prophet Noah existed, and that he was commanded to build an ark and save his family from a flood. A belief that this flood was global in nature is not a requirement for Latter-day Saints; traditionally, many earlier members and leaders endorsed the global flood views common in society and Christendom generally. The accumulation of additional scientific information have led some to conclude that a local flood — one limited to the area in which Noah lived — is the best explanation of the available data. People of either view can be members in good standing.

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