Thursday, July 10, 2008

Replica (Almost) of Noah's Ark

There is a great deal of speculation about how Noah's Ark was constructed.  That is taken up in this essay on Answers to High Schooler's Questions About the Flood.  A Norwegian boat builder ignored key biblical information when he built a replica.

Johan Huibers, a contractor by trade, built what he believes is a replica of Noah's ark. He used these dimensions: 150 cubits long (225 feet), 30 cubits high (45 feet) and 20 cubits wide (30 feet). That's two-thirds the length of a football field and as high as a three-story house.

Johan Huibers
Huibers' ark is constructed of cedar and pine. Noah's boat was built of "gofer" wood, probably reeds. Genesis 6:14 says: "Make yourself an ark of gofer wood, with reeds make the ark, and cover it within and without with a covering of pitch."

The biblical dimensions given in Genesis are 300 cubits long (450 feet), 30 cubits high (45 feet), and 50 cubits wide (75 feet). Huibers' boat took 2 years to built. The biblical narrative doesn't say how long it took Noah to build his boat.

Huibers did most of the work with his own hands, using modern tools and with occasional help from his son after school. He had dreamed of the project for 14 years before beginning work in May 2005. He worked from 8 to 5, six days a week.

The exhibit opened in Schagen, Holland about 30 miles north of Amsterdam on April 28, 2007. Visitors on the first day were stunned by the life-size models of giraffes, elephants, lions, crocodiles, zebras, bison and other animals in the main hold.

Huibers also plans a petting zoo, with baby lambs, chickens and goats, and a camel on the open top deck.

"It's past comprehension, " said Mary Louise Starosciak, who was on vacation with her husband when they saw the ark looming over the local landscape. "I knew the story of Noah, but I had no idea the boat would have been so big."

There is space near the keel for a 50-seat film theater where children can watch a video that tells the story of Noah and the ark. Huibers said he hopes the project will renew interest in Christianity in the Netherlands, where church attendance has fallen dramatically in the past 50 years.  (For more photos go here.)

Related reading:  Africa in the Days of Noah; The Extent of Noah's Flood


Hopie said...

Noah...a man called by God and empowered by God to do the work of God...I hope this replica will revive the faith and wonder of all who see it...a faith that even goes beyond the evidence.

Shannon said...

I am thrilled that this Godly man had the drive and wisdom to rebuild Noah's Ark, what I consider to be the 1st great 'man laboured' wonder of the world, and such a great display of God's love for His people! What an amazing time in the history of God's people and of His creation, wrath, and grace to recreate. Hopefully this will dispell some doubts in among the ignorant and show that God's word IS to be taken literally, and that to prove Himself God gave us exact sciences by which to learn! I do hope to one day leave the U.S. to travel abroad and view this amazing work! Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Hey... gopher wood was cedar, wasn't it? Anyway, not reeds, as far as I can remember.

Great project, isn't it? And though it's not even as big as the original, it's impressive.

Alice C. Linsley said...

The exact meaning of the the Hebrew "gfr" is not clear. Some believe it is cedar because they mistakenly assume that Noah's ark was built where there was an abundance of cedars (around Lebanon). However, Noah lived near Lake Chad in west central Africa during a period of 500 years of wetness. Reeds were used to build large boats and dugouts were used for smaller fishing boats. If you'd like to read more about this, click on the INDEX and read essays under Noah's Ark or Noah's Flood. Topics are arranged alphabetically.