Minute Paper 10/29

Today, our group discussed the story of Noah and the Flood. Although flood narratives were common in other Mesopotamian traditions (due to the area’s natural predisposition for these occurrences), the author of Noah’s story was constrained particularly in his/her retelling through: monotheism, God’s sovereignty, God’s transcendence vs imminence, and finally His covenant with Israel. We also considered why God would place such emphasis on sacrifices and the authority to take life; this may have been a reflection of the most pertinent human transgressions before the Flood. Additionally, we noticed evidence of the Documentary Hypothesis (J’s emphasis on presenting God as anthropomorphic [“shutting” Noah inside], while P emphasizes dates, times, and rituals).