Inside Noah’s Ark: A Hoax

In a previous post, Inside Noah’s Ark, I mentioned a news release in which a group of explorer announced that Noah’s Ark has been discovered. The group also provided a picture of someone inside the Ark.

Mike Heiser at PaeloBabble has an update on the discovery of Noah’s Ark. Mike has posted an email that contains a message from Randall Price, a professor at Liberty University, who was involved with the effort to discover Noah’s Ark.

The following is the email posted by Mike:

I was the archaeologist with the Chinese expedition in the summer of 2008 and was given photos of what they now are reporting to be the inside of the Ark. I and my partners invested $100,000 in this expedition (described below) which they have retained, despite their promise and our requests to return it, since it was not used for the expedition. The information given below is my opinion based on what I have seen and heard (from others who claim to have been eyewitnesses or know the exact details).

To make a long story short: this is all reported to be a fake. The photos were reputed to have been taken off site near the Black Sea, but the film footage the Chinese now have was shot on location on Mt. Ararat. In the late summer of 2008 ten Kurdish workers hired by Parasut, the guide used by the Chinese, are said to have planted large wood beams taken from an old structure in the Black Sea area (where the photos were originally taken) at the Mt. Ararat site. In the winter of 2008 a Chinese climber taken by Parasut’s men to the site saw the wood, but couldn’t get inside because of the severe weather conditions. During the summer of 2009 more wood was planted inside a cave at the site. The Chinese team went in the late summer of 2009 (I was there at the time and knew about the hoax) and was shown the cave with the wood and made their film. As I said, I have the photos of the inside of the so-called Ark (that show cobwebs in the corners of rafters – something just not possible in these conditions) and our Kurdish partner in Dogubabyazit (the village at the foot of Mt. Ararat) has all of the facts about the location, the men who planted the wood, and even the truck that transported it.

It is sad that some people use dishonesty in order to deceive people who have good intentions. Believers must be aware of charlatans who want to deceive them for a profit. It is at this time that believers must remember the words of Jesus: “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29).

This is the reason I wrote in my previous post that I was skeptic about this discovery.

I want to thank Mike Heiser for the information above.

Claude Mariottini
Emeritus Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary

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4 Responses to Inside Noah’s Ark: A Hoax

  1. >I confess I had a worry when I read the story – it just did not seem like a real find of the century. Ah well off to edit my blog and link to your update I do agree with your comments re belief and watching for fake stories


  2. Kepler says:

    >I don't know why there may be some people, irrespective of their religious believes, who want to believe in a literal interpretation of that story.The highest mountains rise 8000 meters over sea level. That means that what is now Miami or Amsterdam would have been covered by such amount of water – which somehow went to outer space afterwards…and that just some 4000 thousand years ago, which is crazy, as any geologist or biologist or physicist would explain from their field. 10000 years ago there were already humans in Patagonia.


  3. Johnny C says:

    >Dr. MariottiniI share your skepticism on this story, and thank you for the information in this post, which I have not seen reported elsewhere at all. While I suppose cobwebs can last a while… It seems sadly that this does indeed appear to be a hoax. Any ship made before the advent of egypt would have, like the early egyptian vessels, been made of papyrus – 'atzei gofer – woods of shaping – wicker and papyrus. Such is the construction of the marsh arabs in modern Iraq. Thor Heyerdahl researched and demonstrated the efficacy of the ancient papyrus vessels with the Ra, Ra II transatlantic crossings.There is no inherent size limit for a papyrus vessel. The Akyayla site, some 17 miles south of Ararat first appeared in pring in Life magazine as a remarkably ship shaped structure over five hundred feet long, which would match the egyptian royal cubit. David Fasold did subsurface radar scans tracing lines of iron in the structure. Fasold believes it is a papyrus vessel, coated with a flexible buoyant natural concrete called kafir, with wooden support structures and iron at the joints. Ron Wyatt also visited the site, having called attention to it anew, and he felst it was a wooden structure, whose sides had 'splayed out' wider than the biblical width dimension. Fasold interpreted the structure as valid, explaining that the ancient basi-cube or rectangle was the average width, length at waterline, and draft, or depth beneath the water, as a standard measure for a vessel's capacity. Rather than wood, coherent soil was found, as would be expected at this time. Fasold however, pointed to the Zoroastrians as having visited the structure in the 800s, describing it as a three story ship shaped var – the Varuna -their flood hero's house of clay, in which he surviced the cataclysm. Persian lamps shoes and coffins, even to roman times preserve the ship shape, and curiously, nine divisions, as the subsurface scans showed. The Akyayla site has been seen, dismessed, and investigated again. Ian Plimer the geologist of australia dismissed it as a plunging geosyncline. I feel that the historical evidence and Fasold's interpretation are compelling, and that the site warrants further consideration. I would very much welcome your ideas on these matters of interest to us all – as Fasold says – it is the Heritage of HumanityJohnny C Godowski


  4. Pingback: The Tragedy of the So-Called “Discovery of Noah’s Ark” | Claude Mariottini - Professor of Old Testament

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