Story of Noah’s flood matches Epic of Gilgamesh

I’m pondering over the great flood of Noah and how the story matches ancient myths.

The story is startlingly similar. It includes a global flood as a punishment from God, a man being told to build an Ark and take animals on board, and also it landed on a mountain after the flood.

Possibilities:
– It’s a true story, Noah lived long ago and from the believers that survived the flood retold this historical fact and somehow it transformed it’s way into the epic of Gilagamesh
– The story was invented and ended up in the Bible and the the Quran
– what other options are there?

Surah Nooh, Verse 26:
وَقَالَ نُوحٌ رَّبِّ لَا تَذَرْ عَلَى الْأَرْضِ مِنَ الْكَافِرِينَ دَيَّارًا

And Nuh (Noah) said: “My Lord! Leave not one of the disbelievers on the earth!
(English – Mohsin Khan)

Surah Hud, Verse 44:
وَقِيلَ يَا أَرْضُ ابْلَعِي مَاءَكِ وَيَا سَمَاءُ أَقْلِعِي وَغِيضَ الْمَاءُ وَقُضِيَ الْأَمْرُ وَاسْتَوَتْ عَلَى الْجُودِيِّ وَقِيلَ بُعْدًا لِّلْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ

And it was said: “O earth! Swallow up your water, and O sky! Withhold (your rain).” And the water was diminished (made to subside) and the Decree (of Allah) was fulfilled (i.e. the destruction of the people of Nuh (Noah). And it (the ship) rested on Mount Judi, and it was said: “Away with the people who are Zalimun (polytheists and wrong-doing)!”
(English – Mohsin Khan)

Surah Hud, Verse 40:
حَتَّىٰ إِذَا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا وَفَارَ التَّنُّورُ قُلْنَا احْمِلْ فِيهَا مِن كُلٍّ زَوْجَيْنِ اثْنَيْنِ وَأَهْلَكَ إِلَّا مَن سَبَقَ عَلَيْهِ الْقَوْلُ وَمَنْ آمَنَ وَمَا آمَنَ مَعَهُ إِلَّا قَلِيلٌ

(So it was) till then there came Our Command and the oven gushed forth (water like fountains from the earth). We said: “Embark therein, of each kind two (male and female), and your family, except him against whom the Word has already gone forth, and those who believe. And none believed with him, except a few.”
(English – Mohsin Khan)

From the article:

The command for Utnapishtim to build the boat is remarkable: “O man of Shuruppak, son of Ubar-Tutu, tear down thy house, build a ship; abandon wealth, seek after life; scorn possessions, save thy life. Bring up the seed of all kinds of living things into the ship which thou shalt build. Let its dimensions be well measured.”

The Epic of Gilgamesh has been of interest to Christians ever since its discovery in the mid-nineteenth century in the ruins of the great library at Nineveh, with its account of a universal flood with significant parallels to the Flood of Noah’s day.1, 2 The rest of the Epic, which dates back to possibly third millennium B.C., contains little of value for Christians, since it concerns typical polytheistic myths associated with the pagan peoples of the time.

The Epic of Gilgamesh is contained on twelve large tablets, and since the original discovery, it has been found on others, as well as having been translated into other early languages. The actual tablets date back to around 650 B.C. and are obviously not originals since fragments of the flood story have been found on tablets dated around 2,000 B.C.8 Linguistic experts believe that the story was composed well before 2,000 B.C. compiled from material that was much older than that date. The Sumerian cuneiform writing has been estimated to go as far back as 3,300 B.C.

Further reading:

Epic of Gilgamesh and Noah’s flood

 

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