1.7 Race Before the Flood

The genealogy of Noah is given in Gen 5.  After the death of Abel and the expulsion of Cain, Adam and Eve had another son, Seth.  Noah was the 8th generation after Seth. Over 1000 years have passed since the creation of Adam.  We will  not cover the controversy as to the completeness of this record, and whether the lifespans are symbolic or literal.  Our interest is in any racial implications of the Scriptures.  And here, the salient point is that the whole subject of race is missing from the genealogy.  We have already experienced the entry of sin into the world, the Fall of man, the expulsion from Eden, the first murder.  Yet over 1000 years went by with no mention of race, no splitting apart of the unity of mankind.  We do not even know the racial characteristics of the forerunners of Noah.  Again, this underscores the point made in unit 1.3 earlier -- race is not a fundamental distinction between people, nor is it an essential component of our humanity, according to the Bible.  

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Significantly, the Bible is at variance with some modern political ideologies, which give race a significant or even determinative role in human relations.