Was Jesus Misinformed?
The idea of Jesus being misinformed is preposterous to a believer who is informed by the evidence of His historical ministry. His identity as the incarnation of God is attested by His own claims and His works recorded by eyewitnesses (see my book, Surprised by Faith, chapter 3). As God, His knowledge of all things—including science and history—is impeccable.
How could He possibly be misinformed?
Some biblical archaeology scholars, however, do not believe in the inspiration of Scripture by the Holy Spirit, (i.e. they reject the evidence referenced above). As such, the words of Jesus regarding the global flood—or any other miraculous occurrence—are to them “misinformation.” They apparently cannot accept the veracity of Jesus’ words, recorded in Matthew 24:37-39, when He said:
For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away, so shall the coming of the Son of Man be.
If the flood was not global, not only Jesus was misinformed. The apostle Peter was also repeating “fake news” (2 Peter 2:5; 3:6), as was Moses (Genesis 6:7).
The Biblical Archaeology Society publishes a journal (Biblical Archaeology Review) to which I often turn for discoveries relevant to the Bible. I also need to recognize that many scientific scholars who contribute to the journal have a bias regarding miraculous events. To them, Jesus’ miracles, the resurrection, and the creation itself must have naturalistic explanations.
One of their recent promotions, “Noah and the flood: Beyond Babylon, Beyond Hollywood,” includes statements like these:
- “Even if it didn’t happen, it’s a true story.”
- “…the Genesis tale…”
- “Although the great flood may not have happened exactly as Genesis relates it… even a relatively small flood can be catastrophic if it kills many people in your village, and from this local trauma a story can grow and grow, until it takes on cosmic proportions.”
It is obvious the authors have difficulty acknowledging the global flood miracle by God (as recorded in Genesis 6-8) and the inspiration of Scripture (see 2 Timothy 3:16-17). The Christian believer understands that since a personal God exists, these biblical positions are not unreasonable. I advise Christians not to be afraid of scholarly research, but always to run its conclusions through the grid of a biblical worldview. God’s Word admonishes us to “Do your best to win full approval in God’s sight… [to be] one who correctly teaches the message of God’s truth” (2 Timothy 2:15, TEV). Scripture also reminds us, “We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given to us… we have the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:12,16, NIV).
The universe, humanity, and history cannot be correctly understood without reference to God’s revelation of truth in the Bible, Jesus, and creation.
Source: Biblical Archaeology Society Online Archive: https://www.baslibrary.org/biblical-archaeology-review/40/4/13