|Exploring Ancient History - The First 2500 Years
PART 2 — THE FOUR LOST CENTURIES
The Vast Scope of Noah's Work Noah not only lived for six centuries prior to the Flood — he also lived for 350 years after it! His life is the second longest ever recorded in human history (Gen. 9:28-29).
For three and one half centuries after the Deluge, Noah continued to serve God. What were his activities during this long period of time? Where did he go? How did he serve God in directing the activities of the tiny but growing population? The Bible does not tell us — but other historical sources provide some extremely fascinating insights into his Patriarchal activities!
Noah's Patriarchal Office Recall that Noah, before the Flood, was a great, wealthy, and influential leader . He was actually A GREAT RULER! His was a tremendous heritage. Noah remember, was the eighth preacher of righteousness in the line of Seth. He held the same rank as Enos, Enoch, and the other great servants of God before him in pre-Flood times. Noah was the Great Patriarch for all the children of Seth. If they had remained obedient, Noah would have been the chief ruler over this vast segment of the human race.
But the children of Seth went the way of Cain. The Flood washed both them and their sinful ways from the earth. Only Noah and his family were left. Thus, when the Flood was over, Noah not only found himself the remnant of the line of Seth — he was also nothing less than the Patriarch of the entire human family. It was his responsibility to direct the activities of the entire human race. His job, under the guidance and inspiration of God, was to rule the whole world God's way! Yes, Noah's responsibilities were literally unlimited in the human sphere for they encompassed ULTIMATE WORLD AUTHORITY!
The world before the Flood had gone wrong. Now it was Noah's responsibility to see that society went the right way. His duty was to teach all humanity God's laws, God's government, God's ways. Would the human race follow Noah's inspired teaching and leadership? The chapters that follow comprise the answer to this basic question!
The Rapid Growth of the Human Family The first and foremost responsibility God gave to Noah's family was to populate a vacant earth. Notice: "And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, 'Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth' " (Gen. 9:1). How did God specifically bless them in this regard? Recall the possibility suggested in Chapter Three that women in the pre-Flood world could not have children as frequently as today. If that were true, God must now have changed this factor in human reproduction in order to allow much more rapid growth of the human family.
Berossus, ancient Babylonian historian and contemporary of Manetho, wrote of events immediately following the Flood. In his discussion of the family of Noah he states; "Now they knew their wives, who, on the very day expected regularly brought forth twins of different sexes; afterwards, when these twins had grown to years of puberty, and married, they also had twins at each birth."
Admittedly this could very well be an exaggeration on the part of a pagan historian, Nevertheless it seems apparent that God did bless this First Family of the new earth in a special way at this unique and crucial time in history! Another factor to consider is the fact that if the frequency of birth increased, the span of life progressively shortened in the centuries after the Flood. Note these Bible examples: Noah lived to be 950, Shem was 600 at death, Abraham 175. Jacob 147 and so on.
A final observation: Noah and his wife did not have any children after the flood. The Bible clearly indicates that of Noah's family, only Shem, Ham, and Japheth had children in post-Flood times. This is a factor regulated by the age of the female — Noah's wife was already past the age of bearing anymore children. All the population of our world has come from Noah's three sons (Gen. 10:1).
Noah as Educator In the decades immediately following the Deluge, the small but growing human family lived in the region of Armenia. As chief Patriarch, what were Noah's duties and activities in these earliest years?
The Bible makes plain that the first duty of a Patriarch is to teach his family the ways and laws of God (Gen. 18:19). Noah was God's experienced and faithful servant. He taught obedience to God. He showed his family that the only way to lasting peace and happiness was to yield to the government of God!
But God did not leave Noah alone in this great responsibility. While Noah's family was growing, God was directly working with and instructing them. In other words, the Eternal undoubtedly held Sabbath services for the small but rapidly growing human family at this early time.
Imagine a Sabbath service with the entire human family present and Noah and Jesus Christ delivering the messages! This is not at all a far-fetched picture! Consider: God the Eternal is vitally concerned with the human family. At this crucial juncture in history He would certainly not leave the people to themselves! If He personally taught Adam and Eve both before and after the expulsion from Eden's garden, if He personally shut Noah into the ark, if He personally met with Abraham later — He certainly must have been personally present in these early years.
Noah, then, with God's help, was engaged in educating the human family. Berossus records that Noah not only taught religion — the laws and government of God — but that he also gave instruction in astronomy, agriculture, and other vital subjects! Yes, Noah was a great Educator! He had accumulated vast knowledge over the course of his CENTURIES-LONG, life. He had walked with God — the greatest source of knowledge in the universe! And he would also draw upon the educational resources of the seven great preachers of righteousness that had come before him. Noah was amply qualified to teach the human family about all phase of human existence and endeavor!
Noah's Original Journey Noah spent many years educating his children and their families. But eventually a certain point was reached — a juncture which required the opening of a new phase in God's post-Flood program: The human family became too populous for all the people to remain in their original Armenian area of settlement — it was time for the colonization of new areas of the world!
Though the Bible does not give details about Noah's activities after the Flood, people in the late Middle Ages and after knew much about his travels and accomplishments. Based upon the record of Berossus and other ancient historians, many books were written by scholars in the 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th centuries which told the story of Noah's travels! Note this amazing statement in a recent book: "... almost any man of the Renaissance could tell the story of Noah's wanderings and of his plantation of Europe, for the account appeared in many books." ("The Legend of Noah", Don C. Allen, 1963, p.117). What happened to these many books?" The answer comprises another sad commentary on human nature.
The history of Noah and of early Europe has been suppressed! Not since the close of the seventeenth century has it been allowed to be taught publicly. This suppression of truth did not happen in a day. It took centuries of calculated plotting and ridicule to wipe the true record from the pages of history. Historians and theologians have conspired together to label the account of Noah's activities as "myth" and "legend." The result is that today Noah (along with the other Patriarchs) is regarded as a mythological hero, and not as a genuine historical person! The scholars' motive is plain, If they had allowed the history of Noah and early Europe to be taught in schools and universities, they would have had to admit the authenticity and authority of the Bible! That they did not want to do!
So the story of Noah has been purposely hidden. But it has not at all been lost. Some of these books are still in existence. A noteworthy example, because it is in English, is the book by Richard Lynche, An historical treatise of the travels of Noah into Europe, London, 1601. Another similar book, written in French by Jean Lemaire and contained in his Works (Louvain, 1882), is summarized on pages 115-116 of Allen's "Legend of Noah".
According to Lemaire's book as summarized by Allen, Noah, after some eight decades in Armenia, took Shem, Ham, and Japheth on a world tour, a preliminary step in establishing settlements for the various branches of the human family. They began their extensive journey north of Armenia on the Black Sea. From the Black Sea they moved into the Mediterranean and then proceeded to sail around its entire coast! This journey, according to Lemaire, took ten years — a comparatively brief period for early Patriarchal times!
After their return to Armenia, Noah began to send out groups of colonists to the various parts of the world where God wanted the different segments of the human family to live. Consequently, it later became Noah's responsibility to journey to these various areas to see that things were progressing according to God's will. The purpose of this chapter, then, is to present a brief picture of Noah' activities from the time of original world colonization to the time of his death some three centuries later. Then after the story of Noah is completed, the account of the activities of Shem, Nimrod, and others in this same era will be brought in to make the picture as complete as possible.
Before going further, an important factor should be considered — the factor of how Noah could determine where the various peoples should be settled and how they could be sent to their prescribed locations. It is apparent that Noah did not send people out haphazardly. In short, there must have been a PLAN of settlement — a plan determined in advance by the Creator.
Did Noah Have Maps? On the pages that follow we will see that Noah had settlements of people living in Arabia, North Africa, Spain, Italy, and other areas beginning approximately a century after the Flood. The overall picture derived from these locations indicates a definite plan of settlement! God wanted certain peoples in certain definite areas over the surface of the earth. He instructed Noah where to send the people. How did Noah know where they should go? How would they know how to get there?
A recent book supplies a logical answer. The book was written by Charles H. Hapgood, professor at Keene State College in Keene, New Hampshire, and is entitled Maps of the Ancient Sea Kings: Evidence of Advanced Civilization in the Ice Age. This valuable book is an amazing contribution to the history of cartography or map-making. The author shows that in the early sixteenth century A.D. which is popularly known as the "Age of Discovery," maps were already in existence which were far more accurate than both those done in that day by the explorers in their voyages or the ancient maps dating from Greek and Roman times. Note these remarkable facts: The continent of Australia was appearing on maps in Europe before Australia was discovered! Furthermore, the Greek Isles depicted on these maps consisted of many more islands than are in existence today. But the most astounding feature of all is that Antarctica appeared on these same maps some two and one half centuries before it was supposedly known to exist — an unglaciated Antarctica on which rivers and mountain areas were clearly delineated!
How could so many remarkable maps appear in Europe in early modern times when the world at that period is regarded by historians as only beginning to awake from its ignorance! The only explanation is that these unusual maps with their remarkable and accurate features must have originated, as Hapgood emphasizes, in a period immediately following the "Ice Ages." Recall from Chapter Three of Part One that the "Ice Ages" — a misleading term — occurred in pre-Flood times following the sin of Cain. And thus the warm period following these severe climatic fluctuations was actually the time of the Flood! In other words, considering this background of geological information, these ancient maps must have originated at some time during the lifetime of Noah.
The Source of the Original World Maps If Noah could sail confidently from one place to another with his sons in an early post-Flood voyage, he certainly must have possessed the knowledge of maps, Where did Noah acquire maps? Did he explore the entire world and draw them himself based on his discoveries? This would have been impossible. Stop to consider: If God told Noah to divide up the world and distribute the various portions of the growing human family in their assigned inheritances, how would they know where to go unless they had maps to guide them? To have the nations divided properly they must not only have had an assigned place to go to, but they must have been shown how to go!
In relation to this, it is interesting to realize that the most primitive people are found in the most scattered places. It's as if they once knew how to get there. And they are certainly incapable of making such a journey today! The Polynesians do not know what kind of ships they came on to reach their islands except for a vague description. And they no longer build any large ships; they merely use small craft for local trips. Or take the case of the Australian aborigines. They use little beyond logs in paddling around among the alligators! They too have lost all knowledge of the ships that once brought them to their homeland. Yet these and other peoples got to their far-flung areas very early and very quickly in the post-Flood world. How are these factors to be explained apart from a knowledge of maps?
Lets ask the question again: Since Noah could not explore the entire world and draw his own maps, how did he obtain the maps he of necessity must have possessed and utilized? Who alone in Noah's day could have possessed the universal knowledge necessary to draw accurate maps of the entire earth? Of course — no one but God Himself. God did not leave Noah to himself in his vast Patriarchal duties before and after the Flood. As already stated, the Eternal appeared many times to Noah personally. He gave Noah precise instructions as how to build the Ark, and since He personally wrote the Ten Commandments in Moses' day, why should it seem strange that He would provide His servant with absolutely essential maps? As we have already stated, these ancient maps were very accurate. In other words, such ancient yet precise maps could hardly have come from any other but the Creator Himself!
Hapgood, of course, does not in any way imply that the source of these maps might have been the Creator Himself. But he does attribute them to what is now known to have been the time of Noah — in geologic terms, the end of the Pleistocene.
Maps Before the Flood? This placement in time would not rule out the possibility that Noah was using maps already prior the Flood. And there are definite indications that this is true.
Consider, first of all, that these extremely ancient world maps all were centered on Egypt. Back In Chapter Seven It was related how Josephus said that Noah, before the Flood, had to flee for his life. Where did he flee from, and where did he go? Ancient Mesopotamian tradition, as contained in the "Epic of Gilgamesh," records that Noah's pre-Flood home was a town called Shruppak in Mesopotamia on the banks of the Euphrates. However, Egyptian tradition states that the Flood was proclaimed to the world from their country. Thus, all these points seem to indicate that Noah fled to Egypt and that Egypt was the place from which Noah began to speak and warn the world! And that would explain why the ancient maps were Egypt-centered.
Noah's ministry of warning to the evil, pre-Flood society lasted for 120 years. Did Noah spend all of twelve decades simply working on the ark while holding regularly scheduled evangelistic meetings adjacent to that great vessel? This is hardly feasible. Since Noah had to warn the world, he had to go TO the world. How did he do this with no trains, planes, radio, or television? The logical answer is that he got there by boat!
This conclusion seems reflected in another ancient Mesopotamian tradition from Berossus which is recorded in Corey's "Ancient Fragments", p. 57. In it is the story of a famous individual who, before, the Flood, traveled along all the coastlands. During the day he would come out of his boat and preach to all the people living on the sea; and at night he would retire back to his ship. The tradition states that he was very eloquent.
In deriving a picture from this, it seems apparent that Noah spent much of those last 120 years traveling around to various parts of the world in carrying out his ministry. Then, from time to time he would return to see how work was progressing on the ark. Much of the responsibility for its completion must have been entrusted to his sons, and Shem in particular.
Again, how would Noah know where to sail in carrying out his far-flung, pre-Flood ministry? He did not have time to explore everything, draw up maps, and do his preaching too! God must have supplied him with maps. The Creator, then, must have drawn up the original maps on the basis that the world needed to be warned by Noah. It is worth repeating: These most ancient of maps were far too accurate, far too clearly delineated, to have come from fallible human sources! It is possible then, that Noah had maps from God before the Flood to use during, the 120 years, carried them through the Flood on the ark, and then used them (with slight modifications) in his post-Flood Patriarchal responsibility. This is possible because the Deluge of Noah's day was not nearly as violent as the one at the time of Satan's rebellion. It did not appreciably change the geography or topography of the continents. If the Flood had been this violent, the many human remains of the pre-Flood society would not have been found on or near the surface of the earth. These remains would have been too deeply buried to be discoverable (as in the case of those which were buried in the muds that came down the valleys of the great rivers such as the Nile, Tigris, and Euphrates — where possibly the culture of the family of Seth remains entombed to this day.) It needs to be understood, however, that these most ancient of maps do not go back to the earliest days of Adam right after Eden. Remember that the world changed immensely after the sin of Cain. So these maps depict a world that necessarily existed some time after the sin of Cain. In other words, they are not Tertiary or Upper Cretaceous maps of the world. Geologically speaking, they are not even Miocene, Pliocene, or Pleistocene. They are post-Pleistocene maps. They picture the earth at the warm period in the end of the Pleistocene — the time which actually was the transition period from the late pre-Flood to early post-Flood when man, as Hapgood indicates, could easily have traveled by water routes — a time when the earth was drying but had plenty of added water areas around to be used for sea travel.
A final important point. All of these early maps showed only a part of the world, not the whole world. The whole earth could have been illustrated if all the maps had been placed together. But each map illustrated only a portion of the globe. The indication of this is that each branch of the human family carried with it only that map showing the portion of the earth to which it was to go. That is, people going east did not need a map of the West, people going west did not need a map showing the East. Here, then, is more proof to show that when Noah sent out these early colonists, they had maps along to guide them to their destination.
The Time of Earliest Post-Flood Colonization Let's go back now and pick up the account of Noah's wide ranging activities in the centuries immediately after the Flood. His original world tour with his sons, according to the account of Lemaire, occurred some eight decades after the Flood and required ten years to complete. Upon returning to Armenia Noah began to work on the next phase of his God-directed post-Flood program — that of sending out colonies!
After a number of years of preparation the post-Flood colonization of the earth began. Through the use of ancient historical records, summarized by Dr. Hoeh in volume two of the Compendium of World History, it is now possible to date this historic event! Exactly when did Noah begin to send various segments of the human family to their assigned geographical locations?
First consider the history of ancient Italy. Italy was uninhabited for 108 years after the Flood (2369-2261). Then, for 2261 and the years following, Noah is listed as the first ruler to exercise authority in relation to Italy. In other words, this is the time Noah originally sent people to live in that area of the world!
The history of ancient Persia dates its first king on the basis of an era of over five centuries, an era which began in 2261. And the history of ancient Scandinavia opens with the migration of Magog (Gen. 10:2) out of the region of Armenia at this very same time. (Compendium, Vol. II, pp. 127-130, 157, 195-196).
Thus we see that the histories of Italy, Persia, and Scandinavia agree in confirming the fact that 2261 was the year when Noah began to send out colonies to inhabit new areas of the world!
Now the amazing fact is, as the subsequent story will bring out, that the building of the Tower of Babel commenced just five years after this initial colonization of 2261. These two all-important historical events are directly related. Before getting to that, we should realize what the bible has to say about the dispersal of the families of people over the face of the earth. Read Acts 17:26 again. This verse emphatically declares that God determines the rise and fall of nations, that He sets the boundaries of nations and races. Now, in addition, notice Deut.. 32:8. Here we plainly read that God actually divided to the nations their respective inheritances or territories on the earth. (It should be explained that the last part of this verse actually shows that God originally apportioned the land among the nations in relation to the population that was eventually to arise from the chosen nation of Israel. God had far reaching plans for Israel long before that nation ever came into existence!) Plainly, it was and is the will of God to give to different people different parts of the earth. As we have seen, this apportioning in post-Flood times began in 2261. Importantly, this fact is confirmed in the Book of Genesis. Notice Gen. 10:25. "And unto Eber (Heber) were born two sons: the name of one was Peleg; for in his days was the earth divided; and his brother's name was Joktan. The name "Peleg" is significant. It is a Hebrew word meaning "division". The margin of many Bibles points this out. In other words, Peleg received this name because IN HIS DAYS GOD DIVIDED UP THE EARTH'S SURFACE AMONG THE NATIONS! This verse has wrongly been understood to mean that this was the time when the continents were separated. But Deut.. 32:8 plainly shows that what was divided was the surface of the earth among the nations!
When did Peleg live? Read Gen. 11:10-16. By simply adding up the figures 2, 35, 30, and 34 we find that Peleg was born a little over a century after the Flood. And thus the Bible confirms the fact that the apportionment of the earth occurred about one century after the Flood — confirms that it was exactly 108 years after as ancient historical sources prove!
Think it through. Peleg was born to Heber and his wife in Armenia shortly before Noah began sending out the people. Though the plan was not yet being carried out, the human family knew it was soon to occur. Noah had probably informed them of this plan in detail after he had returned from his initial world tour years before. That is why Heber could name his son appropriately. He knew a pivotal historical event would soon occur in human experience.
Rebellion in the Human Family The human family, then, stayed in the region of Armenia for a little over a century after the Flood. By that time, however, the earth's tiny but flourishing population had become so large that it was necessary to redistribute the population by sending out colonies in a pre-planned and organized manner as inspired by God and directed by Noah. The project began in 2261.A new era in human experience was beginning!
But then something unusual happened. Problems developed. Part of the human family opposed God's plan and rebelled against it. At this crucial juncture the human family had spread outward from Armenia down on to the fertile Mesopotamian plains. They liked it where they were. Then Noah came along with the colonization plan decreed by the Creator. Noah told the people, "The time has come to spread out over the earth. God wants us to inhabit Europe, Africa, and Asia. Following this plan will require effort and sacrifice on the part of all of us. But great happiness always results when we obey God whole heartedly." Nevertheless, some began to say, "Why can't we stay where we are? This is a rich and fertile area. Everything we need is right here. If we go to these other far-away places we will suffer hardship and have to live out a grim existence. Noah's plan is harmful. It is not in our best interests and should be rejected."
The full story of this rebellion in the human family must wait until the next chapter . However, to reserve the continuity of the career of Noah in this period these events must be presented in the form of a preliminary summary. Here is what occurred.
The rebellion against God's plan was led mainly by the family of Ham and by Cush and Nimrod in particular. At this time Nimrod was a comparatively young man but had already established a reputation as a courageous leader with bold aspirations. In simple terms, Nimrod said to the people, "Let's band together, go to Shinar, and make a name for ourselves. Why should people not be free to go where they please? This is our earth, isn't it? We have a right as human beings to fulfill our own destiny!" This sounded good to many who listened to him so they said, "That's right! Let's go and live life our way!"
So in effect, they rejected God an Noah as their leaders, rebelled against God's plan, threw away the maps that would have showed them where to go and they have been in trouble ever since!
The Significance of Babel Volume one of the Compendium of World History proves that the building of the city and tower of Babel (Gen. 11:9) commenced in the year 2256 and that human government (in opposition to the government of God) was officially established two years later in 2254. This means that human government began just about seven years after the human family was to spread out.
This should be clearly understood: It was this dividing of the earth among various families and races against which Nimrod rebelled! Babel was a rebellion against a specific plan God had set in motion through Noah a few years before. Nimrod wanted to stop this plan. He attempted, as much as he could, to gather the people together so he could control them, something he could not have done had they been spread out. So the reason many people gathered at Babel was because they, along with Nimrod, did not like what God was intending to do with the population. This is why the Bible quotes them as saying, "Let's build Babel lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the face of the whole earth!"
God, in later dispersing the rebels from Babel through the confusion of languages, was not performing some unplanned after-thought. Rather, He was forcing them to do what they had refused to perform voluntarily in previous years! But more on this later.
Now it is time to resume the account of Noah's activities. All of the foregoing material about the great Patriarch has been essentially introductory in nature. The major portion of his post-Flood career remains to be presented.
Noah's Second Journey Noah began to send out colonists from his headquarters in Armenia beginning in 2261. According to the summary of Lemaire's book, the great Patriarch continued sending out regular contingents of colonists for nearly one-half century down to 2216.
Berossus records, for example, that he sent colonists to Egypt, North Africa and other areas of that continent. It is also stated that colonists were sent toward the east in Asia and into different regions of Arabia. Lemaire, in addition, records that other contingents of colonists were assigned to journey to Europe — Germany, France, Spain, and Italy.
Each of these portions of the human family were under the leadership of individuals specifically appointed by Noah. There was an early example of authority from the top down. This colonization project was carefully planned and systematically carried out. Noah was very familiar with God's method of administration. God is not the author of confusion, and faithful Noah did not go contrary to this principle.
Then, in 2216, Noah undertook a new phase of his post-Flood responsibilities. By this time, many colonists had been sent to various areas of the world, but a number still remained. At this juncture, Noah divided those still in Armenia into two groups. He appointed one group to remain in the area and maintain and expand it. The other group was to accompany him on a world tour!
Noah's purpose in undertaking this extensive trip was two-fold. First, he wanted to establish even more settlements of people in various parts of the world. Secondly, he wanted to visit those colonists which he had sent out over the period of the previous decades since 2261. In other words, this lengthy tour of Noah's may be described as a Patriarchal journey. Noah was now undertaking the responsibility of seeing that his God inspired directions were being properly carried out by the people and their leaders in the various world areas. This was similar to the Apostolic journeys of the Apostle Paul in the first century A.D. when he went around to the various churches in Asia Minor and Greece to see how the Christians in each area were progressing.
Try to picture Noah's large group as it undertook the journey. It was described as a "vast retinue" (Allen, page 116). according to Berossus' account, Noah had with him "a great number of families whom he intended to lead into various distant colonies." This was no small contingent. Noah was accompanied by many hundreds of people! This was a very significant portion of the human race led by the most important man in the world! These people did not form an aimless mob of wanderers by any means. They were well-equipped and well-organized and led by the man who had lived in two worlds — both before and after the Flood! — a man who possessed more understanding and knowledge than any other group of people on earth!
The Implications of Noah's Journey This journey was to last for decades. Therefore Noah had with him numerous servants and aides, skilled people to assist him in this vast undertaking. Remember who Noah was. He was the Patriarch of the entire human family — literally the one responsible for ruling the entire world! Here was an influential personality who commanded the respect of all who came in contact with him, a servant of the Creator who had the authority of God to back him in carrying out his duties! Here, then, was a select group of people with the necessary skills and abilities to assist one of the most able rulers the world has ever seen. This vast entourage was far from primitive!
To be more specific, Noah had with him experts it cartography, astronomy, navigation, agriculture, and all other necessary branches of knowledge — knowledge which was later lost to the world for centuries.
The existence of a group such as this implies many other things. For example they must have had the means to travel by both sea and land. Either they had boats with them or the skills and equipment to build them when they wanted to cross a large body of water, (realize that at the time, over a century and a half after the Flood, there must have been many more bodies of water on earth in lower lying areas than have ever existed since.) Then, when they stopped in a given area for a number of years, they must have planted and harvested crops, to maintain their food supply. This of necessity, would require an earth which was much more fertile than it is today. Arabia, for example, could not have been a vast desert area. The implications, therefore such as this are vast. They deserve our thought and consideration. And, if we do attempt to visualize the scope of this undertaking, we are provided fascinating insights into the immediate post-Flood world. Noah lived for 350 years after the Flood. He was responsible, during this period, for the conduct of the entire human family. With such a responsibility, he did not spend his time in idleness! What was he doing for three and one half centuries? The answer to this question now continues.
Noah's Itinerary Berossus provides a summary of the places Noah traveled during the course of his Patriarchal journey. He and his company first went to the region of Hyrcania, that district which is located south of the Caspian Sea. After leaving colonists there, they went "into Mesopotamia, towards the sea below Babylon."
It is worthy of note that Noah did not travel through the central portion of Mesopotamia. The reason seems obvious. That was the region where the unsuccessful attempt at building Babel had taken place, the region still very much under the influence of Nimrod and the others who had rebelled against God's plan for the human family!
After passing through southern Shinar, Noah "led some colonies out into Arabia Felix" where he established several new settlements as well as, undoubtedly, visiting the settlers that had originally been sent there from Armenia.
The next part of Noah's itinerary was Africa. According to the account from Berossus, Noah spent over half a century on the African continent. No details are given as to exactly where Noah journeyed while in Africa but, it seems likely that he spent most of his time in the north along the Mediterranean coast where a majority of the colonists were undoubtedly located. At this early post-Flood period the majority of world settlers must still have been living on the edges of the Mediterranean, although beginning to penetrate farther and farther inland in Africa and Europe.
Lemaire's history of the travels of Noah states that the great Patriarch and his retinue finally left Africa and moved into Spain 259 years after the Flood, which would be the year 2110. Berossus recorded that while in Spain, Noah established two colonies. Then, after nine years in Spain, Noah moved on into Italy. From this point on the remaining decades of Noah's eventful life can be presented in greater detail.
Noah in Italy
Before proceeding further, The history of Italy should be reviewed briefly from the time of the Flood down to the year 2101 when Noah arrived. (For 108 years, after the Flood, Italy was uninhabited. Then, in 2261, Noah sent the first colonists from Armenia to inhabit that part of the post-Flood world. Gomer, son of Japheth, along with his son, Ochus, is listed as ruling in Italy from earliest times down to the year 2120. (See page 130 of volume two of the Compendium.) Next, Noah's son, Ham, was dominant in Italy for the next 19 years, 2120-2101. Both Berossus and Lemaire record that Ham had a negative effect on the inhabitants of Italy. Their accounts state that he was "endeavoring to corrupt" them. Lemaire provides this background. Gomer died at an advanced age in 2120. At this crucial juncture Ham came to Italy from Africa and usurped authority over the colonists. Apparently Gomer's son, Ochus, was not influential enough to maintain rulership. Ham must have then begun a process of turning the people away from the teachings of Noah.
Remember that he was within the Hamitic branch of the human family that rebellion against the government of God originated. Apparently Ham had never been too concerned about teaching and maintaining the way of God among his progeny. Also remember the prophecy concerning his children pronounced by God in Genesis 9:25. Berossus' account indicates that Ham was a wicked person who got involved in all kinds of sinful practices, and that now, in Italy, he "began to corrupt the people's morals by his many crimes and iniquities." Earlier in his history, Berossus wrote that Ham was "assuring the people that it was their duty to commit all kinds of excesses, just as they did before the days of the Deluge".
Noah immediately took action to change this situation. He drove Ham from the country and took over the reins of government himself! Noah is listed as reigning in Italy for the remainder of his life, a period of 82 years.(2101-2019) (see page 130 of volume II of the Compendium.) Where was he in Italy for these many decades?
Ancient Italian tradition may provide a clue! According to such tradition, the name Genoa is derived from "city of Noah". Italian historical sources done in the late Middle Ages tell the early history of Genoa and describe it as the great, original city!
Berossus records that Noah, while in Italy during the latter part of his eventful life, was active in the northwestern section of the peninsula near the Arno River. This is near Genoa and thus lends some support to the traditions about this city.
Sabatius Saga An alternate list of rulers for earliest Italy contains an individual with the name or title of Sagatius Saga. He reigned for 31 years between 2075 and 2044. Notice that these years fall within Noah's 82 years in Italy (2101-2019).
Who was this Sabatius Saga? Why was he in Italy at the same time Noah was active there? A careful analysis of the name itself will provide necessary answers. First consider the term "saga". Other forms of it are sancta, santas, saint. The French words saga and sagesse have the same etymology. All these words mean the same — sacred or holy! Saga means "holy" or Holy ONE.
It is interesting to note that Berossus, at the beginning of his second book when discussing the place of emergence from the ark, refers to it as "Armenia-Saga" — in other words, Holy Armenia. This is an appropriate term when we consider that here was the place where God began His plan for the human race after the Flood — the place where the Eternal Himself was present with Noah!
Now what does Sabatius mean? Other forms of this term are Sabasius, Sabazius or Sabazios. Jewish scholars at Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem have stated that this term was used among pagan Greeks as a reference to the Most High. These scholars further went on to say that sabazios is the root of the Hebrew sabaoth.
With that in mind, look at James 5:4. Here God is called "the Lord of sabaoth. This word sabaoth means "hosts" or "armies". According to the Greek dictionary of Strong's Concordance (number 4519). sabaoth means "armies ... a military epithet of God". The Lord of sabaoth is "the Lord of armies" or "the Lord of Hosts". Christ, in other words, is commander of vast angelic armies as described in Rev. 19:4. These Jewish scholars plainly stated that the Greek god Sabazios was actually the Lord of Hosts! It is a reference to the Eternal Himself!
If Sabazios refers to God, who is the Sabatius of ancient Italian lists? Let's put our definitions together: Saga means holy; and Sabatius means the Lord of Hosts. In short, Sabatius Saga was "The Holy One, the Lord of Hosts" or the Holy Lord of Hosts"! This name in ancient Italy in Noah's time must mean that God was appearing as a man, as a ruler, in this period of history! It must mean that God was appearing to Noah and working with him as He had both before and after the Flood!
Why in Italy? Here, then, is apparently a case where the Eternal Himself actually appears in ancient, secular historical record under the name "Sabatius Saga!"
In the early days after the Flood the one who became Jesus Christ was High Priest of Armenia. In the days of Abraham He appeared as Melchisedec of Salem, King of Righteousness (Gen. 14 and Heb. 7.) Now, here, late in the life of Noah, He appears in Italy as the Lord of Hosts! Yes, Christ appeared on earth many times in earliest history.
Why did the Eternal appear in human form as ruler in Italy? Because Noah was there administering correct patriarchal government. Consider this: God did not personally, in visible form, direct human government when the people or leaders rejected Him. For this reason we do not find any historical reference to His personal direction in Mesopotamia where Nimrod and his rebellious followers congregated. But He logically would appear in Italy where righteous Noah was obediently carrying out His directions. The Eternal would work with those who were willing to work with Him! It is not known what Noah did while the Eternal was in Italy. Possibly His presence there gave Noah the opportunity to once more travel to other settlements to help governmental problems that might have developed. Or Noah might have made a last journey back to his former headquarters in Armenia. Also He might have given Noah directions as to how to organize the affairs of government as the great Patriarch neared the end of his eventful life.
Italy and Pagan Religion The presence of Noah in Italy had a profound influence on the course of false religion in the world. Nearly everyone has heard of the ancient pagan Greek and Roman gods and goddesses. And it is commonly assumed that the pagan religion centering around them spread from Greece to Rome (since Greece dominated the world prior to the Roman empire). But it was just the other way around! Paganism really spread from Italy to Greece!
There is a very special reason why Italy originally became the home of religious apostasy in the West. That reason should now be obvious from the story that has just been told here. Of course! The pagan mystery religions had a very special problem confronting them in Italy — they had to counter the teachings of Noah!
Yes, Noah, as has been made clear in this chapter, was the most influential ruler in the early history of Italy. No one on earth could match his centuries-long life-time of experience. He lived both sides of the Flood. He knew what life meant. Apart from him the whole human family would have been wiped from the face of the earth. In the years after the Flood his vigorous and widespread teaching kept the truth of God very much alive in the world. The world's religious leaders in ancient times knew that if they were to succeed in deceiving the masses they had to in some way, especially in Italy, counterfeit the teachings of Noah! How could this be done? In the same way later apostates (inspired by the same Devil!) counterfeited the teachings of Christ. The parallel is exact. To counterfeit Christ, they took Christ's name and labeled their religious superstitions "Christian! They began to worship the name and the person of Christ — but they rejected His teaching and message! (Mark 7:6-7).
Similarly, to subdue the doctrines Noah preached, the false teachers made a pretense of following the great Patriarch — claiming they were doing what he commanded, claiming they did it with Noah's sanction.
After Noah died, their task became easier. They made a god out of Noah and got the people to worship him! They called him, in their mysteries, Janus — the god with two faces looking in opposite directions the one who could look into both worlds because he experienced the worlds on either side of the Flood. Janus was also called Vertumnus because through him the seasons continue in their cycle.
So here again is another example of mythology being used as a cover-up for an actual individual of the Bible and ancient history. It is time that the mythological encrustation's and modern historical superstitions be stripped away so that the real impact of Noah upon world history can once again be realized and understood!
Summary of Noah's Life Noah's long and eventful life finally ended 350 years after the Deluge, the year 2019. Let's summarize the major stages of his post-Flood activities.
For the first century and a half after 2369, Noah's activities were mainly centered in Armenia where he was busy educating the human family and, later, directing the sending out of groups of colonists to populate the world. Then, beginning in 2216, Noah went on his patriarchal world tour which lasted for some 115 years. Finally, he spent the last eight decades of his life ruling in Italy. According to historical accounts outside of the Bible, these represent the three main phases of Noah's work in post-Flood times. How many books could be written if all the details were known!
Noah, then, established his headquarters in two different areas of the world — first in Armenia, and later in Italy. The historical account preserved from Berossus contains this summary statement: "In the two countries of Armenia and Italy ... he began ... and ended his teaching, his reign and his life."
What occurred when Noah died in 2019 in Italy? Was his government left without an adequate leader? Happily, the answer is "N0." The king list for most ancient Italy gives as his successor an individual named Cranus Razenus, a son of Noah! The name means the crowned one, and father of many races or peoples. This would describe no other son of Noah save faithful Shem himself. (See page 130 of volume two of the Compendium.) Egyptian history proves that Shem was a ruler in Dynasty I and that his reign in the land of the Nile was terminated in 2019, the very year of Noah's death! Apparently Shem hurried to Italy from Egypt at the time of his father's death to carry on Noah's Patriarchal government; Shem remained in Italy for thirty four years till 1985 when his duties called him elsewhere.
This ends the account of Noah's activities after the Flood. With this background in mind, it is necessary to back up in time and tell of other events and personalities on the world scene in this same crucial time period — to tell of individuals who, in contrast to Noah, were very eager to disobey the Creator!