News

Hallelujah! Mark II Ark almost complete

DOTTY Dutch building contractor Johan Huibers is close to completing his second Noah’s Ark and, by May 2011, the first visitors are expected to come onboard.

The ark will remain in Dordrecht until the middle of 2012, when Huibers then plans to take his ship around the world, beginning with London in time for the Olympic Games.

According to this report, the crazy creationist and evangelist began building his first ark – half the size of the Noah project described in the Bible – in 1992, when he dreamt of a flood. At the time he said:

'If I had a hammer and some gopher wood ...' Johan Huibers pictured with his first ark

I saw the Netherlands disappearing under an enormous mass of water, comparable with the tsunami in Southeast Asia. The next day, I found a book about Noah’s Ark in the local bookshop, and since then, my dream has been to build the ark.

One of his first problems was figuring out what wood to use. According to biblical mythology, God tells Noah, “Make thee an ark of gopher wood … ” Modern scholars are not sure what “gopher wood” was. It may have been a mis-translation or it may be extinct. So Huibers used American cedar and Norwegian pine.

Huibers’ first ark was narrow enough to travel the inland waterways of the Netherlands. He finished the ship in 2007 and installed exhibits on board aimed at proving the biblical creation narrative to be true and evolution theory false. The interior was populated with life-size models of animals, including giraffes, elephants, lions, crocodiles, zebras and bison.

In a 50-seat theatre, visitors could watch a segment of the Disney film Fantasia that retells the story of Noah’s Ark. Huibers began work on his second ark in 2008. With a volume ten times that of the first, the ship is to house two theatres, a cinema, a restaurant and a deck with live animals. On another deck, a small train will take visitors literally through the Bible story.

Huibers then sold his first ark last December to Aad Peters, a fellow Christian.

Peters, a puppeteer and theatre-maker, wants to use the ship to reacquaint the Dutch public with stories in the Bible from which he believes they have largely become estranged. He said:

For Red Riding Hood you can go to a theme park, but where can you go to see Adam and Eve?

The new owner wants to change the ship’s purpose from evangelism to “biblical entertainment.” He said:

The stories have to speak for themselves. The rest is up to the Holy Spirit.

Peters said he believes that for many years, speaking about the Bible in the Netherlands was a no-no. But in other parts of the world it is completely normal to talk about religion.

The advantage of the rise of Islam in the Netherlands is that we are allowed to talk about Christianity again.

Huibers, meanwhile, is standing by for Jesus’ next appearance.

I only look forward to the second coming of Jesus Christ. Maybe it will take another 50 or 100 years, nobody knows that, but we are very close. That all is not well with our society seems obvious to me. But I am not one for whipping up fears. My message is: ‘Choose Jesus now, while it’s still possible.’

45 responses to “Hallelujah! Mark II Ark almost complete”

  1. Ian says:

    Interesting that the one shown doesn’t appear to be capable of floating by itself. As for the full size one, if you haven’t seen it before this is an excellent explanation of why it won’t work:
    http://ncse.com/cej/4/1/impossible-voyage-noahs-ark

  2. Gordon says:

    Jesus: Possibly as real as Red Riding Hood

    Now that’s a message more evangelists need to share.

  3. The Woggler says:

    Strictly speaking, of course, it’s Ark Mark 1.

  4. Neuseline says:

    Permit me several comments:
    Johan Huibers, there is a passing resemblance to Ian Botham (Ian, no offence intended).
    When God said to Noah, “Make thee an ark of gopher wood” he was incorrectly quoted. What God really said, was “Make the an ark AND go for wood”, meaning not straw or papyrus.
    Huibers wants to take the ship around the world, will he allow more than two asses to board?

    I apologize if my fellow readers think I am not taking this story seriously enough.

  5. AngieRS says:

    I’d love to own the timber yard this blokes gets his supplies from.

  6. Marcus says:

    I did wonder what Ian Botham was up to these days.

  7. The Woggler says:

    He certainly looks more like Ian Botham than he does Steve Carrell.

  8. “But I am not one for whipping up fears. My message is: [insert veiled threat towards non-believers]”

  9. sailor1031 says:

    Well just how inauthentic is it to use American cedar and Norwegian pine – neither would have been available to noah. I see a high thunderbolt risk here. As for his dream about the Netherlands under water – that really happened when there were torrential rains and a major dyke gave way. Was it back in the 1950s? I don’t think he dreamed that at all!

  10. Broga says:

    This must have been quite a difficult project. Noah didn’t even have a chainsaw and I don’t know what kind of metal tools were available at the time. There are basically two different kinds of fundies on the ark issue.

    The first goes a bit crazy trying to square the circle and to find “sensible” reasons to explain how the boat was built. (The minor difficulty of getting to Australia to round up a couple of koalas and then up to the North Pole to capture a couple of polar bears – not the most amenable of critters to interference by an old man with a beard – I pass on.)

    The second says, “To god all things are possible and if god wanted this then he would ensure Noah could do it.” Indeed, indeed.

    What is also left out of the story is the murderous cruelty of drowning all humanity, including the childen that are so precious to the divine mass murderer, except for our boat builder and a few others.

    I have no wish to be too sceptical but I have to say I am not entirely convinced by the story.

  11. Kev says:

    Just back from a trip to the cannabis cafe me thinks! 😉

    ‘In a 50-seat theatre, visitors could watch a segment of the Disney film Fantasia that retells the story of Noah’s Ark.’ MUST be true then if Disney says so. Then I do recall the bible passage…

    ‘…and God sayeth unto Mickey, take up your hammer and saw and maketh me an ark. And in that ark place Goofey, Minnie, Donad Duck and two of every cartoon character there be in Hollywood…’ Animation 3 ch4 v6.

    Amen!

  12. Dave Gilbert says:

    “For Red Riding Hood you can go to a theme park, but where can you go to see Adam and Eve?”

    So he admits its all a fairy tale then?

  13. David Anderson says:

    Thinks he’s Ken Ham (no pig jokes, please)(ok, if you must).

  14. Walter says:

    Not wanting to get into hot water but part of me admires the enginuity and craftmanship that must have gone into building a structure like this*. Secondly there is a unique opportunity to do a scientific experiment to see whether there is any validity in the biblical account. How many animals realistically could the ark hold? How did the animals cope for 40 days and night? How did the animals survive after the flood? A proper scientific test that, I predict, will confirm Noah’s Ark as an early civilisation story adopted and embellished by the Israelites.*(As long as sustainable forest) No need to sacrifice any animals after experiment and welfare of all animals maintained throughout.

  15. Stonyground says:

    The phrase more money than sense could have been coined with this story in mind. Having said that, I agree with Walter, it is possible that quite a lot of the people who would initially be impressed by this are going to end up realising that the story is absurd. It is significant that these things have to placed on rafts because they don’t actually float. I read somewhere that someone who knew a bit about wooden vessels had said that it was impossible to build a wooden boat that big that would float. He said that when attempts were made to build wooden boats even half that size they flexed so much that gaps opened up in the hull.

  16. David Anderson says:

    Of course the story of the Ark is absurd. How much warning of the flood were the sloths of Central and South America given to get to the Ark on time? How did all the animals from Australia get there? Icould go on but this story is so absurd that I can´t understand why the godbots still promote it. If when that Ark supposedly found landfall, why don´t we see a steady migration of all species from that point wherever it was supposed to be?

  17. dogon says:

    “The new owner wants to change the ship’s purpose from evangelism to “biblical entertainment.”

    And that’s exactly what it is ….entertainment for the inane mind.

    The religious keep telling us you cannot disprove the existence of a god…..well then how does Mr. Huibers intend to disprove evolution?

  18. barriejohn says:

    @David Anderson: We’ve had this conversation here before. They hold (and I won’t say “believe”, because I seriously doubt it) that the earth had only one land mass prior to The Flood, so that solves those problems. They also deny that geological processes have occurred over millions of years, naturally! To paraphrase Soap, the answers to these and many other questions will be found at this site:

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/

  19. Mike says:

    Just the money that could have been used to feed or pay heating bills for the poor, wasted on this mess. Makes we want to throw up.

  20. Normand says:

    You people of little faith. The polar bears, crocodiles, kangaroos, elephants, etc. just appeared miraculously so Noah did not have to go there and get them and they probably miraculously did not have to eat for 40 days and 40 nights or they were miniaturized for the duration of the trip or they were in a state of suspended animation or…….. they have an answer for everything just like when they say that fossils were planted there by Satan to fool us!!! Any wonder why they believe the likes of Sarah Palin!!

  21. barriejohn says:

    I believe that God put Sarah Palin on this earth to test our faith.

  22. Harry says:

    I’m more inclined to say that Sarah Palin is the tool of the devil. Or Eris. One or the other.

  23. NeoWolfe says:

    I find it humorous that people who think the flood was real would recreate the ark in the image of a ship with a superstructure. Ships are shaped the way they are to reduce hydraulic drag. The ark was just a liferaft, no motor, no sails. There is nothing in the provided dimensions that indicate it was anything more than a rectangular box.

    Ian’s link made several good points, including what type of engineering genius it would require to build it to withstand the high seas created by the most catastrophic storm man has ever witnessed. Would such inertia kill any large animal not properly harnessed in its enclosure?

    Two of the contributors referred to food for the animals for forty days. The problem is much bigger than that. Genesis 7:24 “The waters flooded the earth for a hundred and fifty days.” Of course, none of them got sick and died in captivity. Can you imagine the job of feeding millions of species their necessary diet on a daily basis. The job would have required a workforce bigger than the ark without the animals. And who shoveled the shit?

    A fundie who is tolerated at the AA website admitted in a couple of posts that the flood myth is not plausible. He said it was a regional event, most likely the breaking of a natural dyke by tsunami or rising sea levels in the South Aegean Sea. How do you rectify something like that in your mind? Assume the bible is the inspired word of god, yet admit that one of it’s pillar events is a wild exageration. Is it pathetic or hilarious?

    NeoWolfe

  24. Pete H says:

    The Thinking Atheist have a good video on the Noah story:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CccaGaKOlSI

    I seem to recall there’s an excellent de-construction of the story in the book “Biblical Nonsense” as well.

  25. Colleen says:

    Thank you God that you are bigger than unbelief based on finite human understanding. Thank you for giving us the Bible to know you.

  26. barriejohn says:

    Re NeoWolfe’s statement: I may have mentioned before that philologists have claimed for some years that the term translated (rather unsatisfactorily) “in a cubit shalt thou finish it above” (regarding the ‘window’ of the ark) means that the ‘boat’ was a box of triangular cross-section, with a vent at the top, which would have had more stability than a traditional vessel. Be that as it may, I have never understood why fundamentalists go to so much trouble to explain how these “miracles” actually happened. As Normand comments: why not just say “God did it” and leave it there?

  27. barriejohn says:

    Sasha: Your comment appears to have been added to the wrong thread!

  28. Tim Danaher says:

    Please, everyone, stop repeating this ‘forty days and nights afloat’ bullshit. You’re just making it too easy for them. The bibble says that it rained for forty days and nights.

    The bibble, naturally, contradicts itself as to how long the ark was afloat – choose between seven or ten months:

    And the ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat.” (Genesis 8:4)

    And the waters decreased continually until the tenth month: in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, were the tops of the mountains seen.” (Genesis 8:5)

    So that’s an awful lot of shit to account for.

  29. Ivan says:

    Noah’s Ark was built of rodent erections?

  30. chrsbol says:

    Ivan the (jokes are) Terrible

  31. David Anderson says:

    Thank you God from all those people suffering in abject poverty because of your earthly mouthpieces.
    Thank you God from all those people suffering from terrible diseases because of your earthly mouthpieces.
    Thank you God for giving us a Bible so that we may know that you are “a petty, unjust, unforgivung control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” (Dawkins)

  32. barriejohn says:

    Tim: There are two interwoven flood myths in Genesis, just as there are two creation stories. This was obvious to me even when I was a Christian!

  33. NeoWolfe says:

    Pete H, great link.

    Bjohn said:

    ” means that the ‘boat’ was a box of triangular cross-section, with a vent at the top, which would have had more stability than a traditional vessel.”

    As long as we are speculating about something that never happened, let’s examine that theory. Recalling my geometry, the surface area of a rectangle is calculated by multiplying the length of its base by it’s height. However, the surface area of a triangle is calculated by one half of it’s base, multiplied by it’s height. That would have cut the usable space on each deck of the ark in half. Further complicating the ridiculous lack of space.

    And while a triangular shape would have provided a much stronger structure, it would have done nothing to make it more stable on high seas nor would it affect the inertia felt by it’s occupants. It would have been capsized as easily, if not more easily by a rogue wave.

    But, forget engineering. Every member of the crew would have to have a doctorate in animal husbandry to keep these animals alive for five months. Since there were no refrigerators, carnivores would have to be fed freshly killed meat.

    But, there is a school of thought among the fundies that there were no carnivores before the flood, that god changed nature at that point where animals began to fear man. However, it flies in the face of the idea that on the seventh day, god rested from creation. He reinvented the foodchain without rising from his rest?

    Now, if we wanted to assume that all the incongruities were solved by the omnipotent power of jehovah, one is still left asking, “why not just kill everyone without the water thing?”

    NeoWolfe

  34. barriejohn says:

    NeoWolfe: I know that these things “never happened”. I believe that a triangular box, with sloping sides and the ballast from all those dinosaurs would have been a very stable vessel, but I doubt that the Biblical authors would have known that! I think this is yet another case of modern man reading things into the text by means of verses with dubious meanings. There are many other more straightforward explanations for those strange words. As regards the question “why not just kill everyone without the water thing?”, the answer is that “God was teaching his people a lesson through this story”. That I can go along with, though I fail to see why anyone holds that just because mythology is used to convey moral lessons the stories that it uses must necessarily refer to real events. I love Aesop’s Fables, Arabian Nights, Brer Rabbit, Gulliver’s Travels, and so on, but no one is claiming that the events related actually happened! The Greeks had an incredible mythology – as do many Eastern religions – but I would just love to know where the followers of the Abrahamic faiths got this idea that it was necessary to believe in every literal word of their holy book to merit “salvation”. Can anyone shed any light on this?

  35. Maz Paterson says:

    I wish mark the arkII all best, fill the ark with crazy god lovers and sail away…..never to b heard or seen again.

  36. Brian Jordan says:

    An experiment to to see whether there is any validity in the biblical account? Well, even the half scale model had to be built round a steel structure and floated on a pontoon. So I’d say we have an answer.

  37. barriejohn says:

    Re the “gopher wood”. This is based upon a mistranslation by the authors of the KJV. It should read: And God said to Noah, “GO FOR WOOD”.

  38. NeoWolfe says:

    Bjohn said:

    “the answer is that “God was teaching his people a lesson through this story”. That I can go along with”

    Dangerous words when surrounded by ravenous wolves. 🙂 But, really, I do get your point. For example, everyone understands that the parable of the good samaritan wasn’t a telling of an event, it was an illustration of a mindset of being compassionate, even to people who are socially hated.

    You asked:

    ” but I would just love to know where the followers of the Abrahamic faiths got this idea that it was necessary to believe in every literal word of their holy book to merit “salvation”. Can anyone shed any light on this?”

    I suppose it’s impossible to say definitively, but, have you considered that to doubt any part of the bible, as literal, casts a shadow of doubt on the promise of eternal life? That is the drug that keeps the fundies coming back for more, isn’t it? The only way to safeguard the delusion, is to believe it comes from the creator of the universe, and that the bible is infallible. Without that, the drug loses it’s potency, and doubt creeps in.

    Then, the worst case scenario, they awake from their dream and become freethinkers. The planet is saved from self destruction. Oh, wait, I could live with that!!!!!

    NeoWolfe

  39. barriejohn says:

    NeoWolfe: Things get curioser and curioser. I know that any sane person realizes that the parables are pure fiction, though based on common everyday events, but I knew fundies who were adamant that when Jesus said “A sower went forth to sow” he was referring to AN ACTUAL PERSON – as he couldn’t have been telling fictitious stories! It just serves to demonstrate the peculiar mindset of people like Huibers, who are determined to take every word of The Bible literally.

  40. NeoWolfe says:

    Bjohn,

    I guess, that I find myself wondering if you believe in my ability to perceive how stupid humans are. I confess, that year by year, I care less, because it’s too late to make a difference. But, I love my children, and if you are a freethinker, you realize that that love is is a trick of nature. Protecting the next generation.

    I am a toy of evolution. But, I have always wanted to be more than that. I hope I have acheived it.

    NeoWolfe

  41. barriejohn says:

    To be fair to them, most Christians – even fundamentalists – do realize that parables are, of their essence, fictional. (They therefore refuse to class the story of The Rich Man and Lazarus as a parable.) I am only talking about some extremists amongst them!

  42. Maggie says:

    The original story of the flood was never meant to be “real” because it comes from the epic poem Gilgamesh. There is a fair amount of detail which Utnapishtim gives to Gilgamesh about the building of boat and of the journey till the boat lodged on Mount Nimus. Those who read and believe the bible’s version should recognise the plagiarism that went into it; however, that would require a reality check and relidiots’s checks bounced long ago.

  43. barriejohn says:

    Maggie: Odd that those stories are based on Sumerian myths, and the Old Testament was written while the Jews were in captivity in…Babylon!

  44. NeoWolfe says:

    Bjohn said:

    ” Old Testament was written while the Jews were in captivity in…Babylon!”

    Who knows? That may be true. But, the book of Genesis was accredited to moses whose lifespan is estimated at Between 1300 and 1150 B.C.

    http://www.answers.com/topic/moses

    As I remembered, Jerusalem was sacked by the Babylonians in 607 B.C. Therefore, to be responsible, since you say the myth was acquired in Babylon, let’s see how many cultures share this myth:

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/flood-myths.html

    So who stole it from whom? Well, I found an opinion:

    http://www.pantheon.org/articles/f/flood_myths.html

    To quote:

    “The Sumerian flood myth is the oldest (about 2000 BCE) and forms the foundation of the Gilgamesh epic.”

    Humm? Is this real evidence that moses never put plume to papyrus, and contributed nothing to the old testiment? Let’s consult the oldest manuscripts in existence:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dead_Sea_scrolls

    Quoting: “The texts are of great mystical and historical significance, as they include the oldest known surviving copies and extra-biblical documents and preserve evidence of great diversity in late Second Temple Judaism. They are written in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek, mostly on parchment, but with some written on papyrus.[1] These manuscripts generally date between 150 BCE and 70 CE”

    In historical terms, that like yesterday’s newpaper.

    Therefore, it is this clown court’s verdict is that Bjohn is innocent of slander and blasphemy. However, the clown court finds that Bjohn, in the future needs to document his posts, because the universe is watching. Or in case it is. 🙂

    NeoWolfe