Genealogies are to historians what maps are to travelers. Both provide a framework to construct a mental picture – something to hang your hat on. Known to most scholars as the table of nations, Genesis chapters 10 and 11 contain one of the oldest records in the world. This chronology documents a very specific lineage from the development of Noah and his sons after the Genesis Flood into the early nations of the world. Can it be trusted? Most scholars would question its reliability and many would say it’s mythology.
Table of Nations – Genesis Chapters 10-11
However, if some of the names in the list could be found in records of other Middle East nations, that would lend a high degree of credibility to Genesis. Based on this supposition, Bill Cooper authored After the Flood – a culmination of 25 years of research. Initially, he hoped to find 40% to 50% of the names listed. That in itself seemed too much to ask. What his research showed however, far exceeded his expectations.
He discovered that,“…every one of their names is found in the early surrounding records of the Middle East.” He says, “…No other ancient historical document of purely human authorship could be expected to yield such a level of corroboration as that!”
Yet, Cooper was not content to stop there. What about the ancient chronicles and genealogies of the people of Europe? Did any of their records contain the same names or their linguistic derivatives?
Again, the answer is “Yes.” The early British, Celts, AngloSaxons, Welsh, Norwegians, and Danes, all traced their descent from patriarchs listed in the Biblical Table of Nations.
Why then, are these records not taken into account by modern scholars? Are they unaware of their existence? No. According to Cooper, it is references to Creation and the Flood that have caused scholars to label them frauds. Believing early monks attempted to Christianize history, modern scholars assert that any early document containing biblical names and events cannot be trusted.
Because of this, Cooper was required to narrow his search to documents written prior to the conversion and influence of Chrisitanity. Did any exist? Did they contain names found in Genesis 10 & 11? Cooper’s painstaking research demonstrates the answer is, “Yes.” For more on his remarkable research, make sure you read his book.
This article was also included in the January/February 2012 issue of Think and Believe newsletter.
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