Search for Noah's Ark: Big Splash on the Big Screen October 8
Noah’s Ark has always been among the Bible’s most fascinating stories. Sight and Sound Theaters has crafted it into a powerful stage drama. Answers in Genesis is building a full-scale replica in northern Kentucky. And intrepid adventurers continue to search for it year after year, decade after decade. Noah’s boat-building adventure was of such grand proportions that through the centuries, it has endured as one of those monumental proofs of the power of God in a man’s life.
Having grown up in the Christian faith, I have always found it logical to accept the biblical stories of great men and women of God. It has never occurred to me to question the Genesis account of Noah building the Ark. I believe in a God who is all powerful, so what’s the question? It’s fine to accept it by faith, but I’ll admit that it’s also intriguing to consider that men of faith, wisdom, adventure, and courage continue to search for Noah’s Ark.
Finding Noah is a new 90-minute documentary that chronicles the efforts of one focused team of explorers, archaeologists, scientists, and pastors – adventurers all – who recently searched for Noah’s Ark on Turkey’s Mount Ararat. The Bible says it landed there, and many scholars believe it may still be ensconced in the layers of sediment or deep crevices of the great mountain. The gripping story will explode onto theater screens for a one-night extravaganza on October 8.
The narrative in Finding Noah is couched in a historical context via archived clips from previous expeditions, so the viewer gets a bird’s eye view of other teams that have searched for the Ark through the years. And there’s a lot of captivating content in those previous stories. Intrigue? Secret findings not disclosed? Danger? Cover-ups? Adventure? They’re all there.
These Finding Noah guys are true, bona fide adventurers. Probably card-carrying adventurers. I like to think of myself that way, but those who know me know that would be quite a stretch. As a kid, adventure for me was a three-day camping trip when we traveled by boat (I couldn’t swim.) to an island in Guntersville Lake near my Alabama hometown. Once on the island, we cooked over an open fire and went three days without bathing. All in all, not a bad adventure for a nine-year-old who rarely traveled farther from home than his cousins’ house a quarter-mile away.
In later years, adventure has meant travel on six continents – but always with a host or with someone awaiting me at the airport to make sure I had a warm bed to sleep in, safe food to eat, and clean water to drink! And when I boasted to friends about sleeping two nights in a tent in a wildlife preserve in Kenya, I felt guilty until I explained to them that my tent had an indoor bathroom with hot water and a shower. But it was a tent. Really.
Back to the bold men of Finding Noah. Back to real adventure.
At the beginning of the film, actor/narrator Gary Sinise says, “Few things are as universal as man’s need for exploration. Something in our DNA causes us to search, to find, to discover things unknown about our past, [things] which then become our guide for the future.”
This team embodies that inherent need for discovery. Their story is riveting, informative, and entertaining. And humbling. These guys put me to shame, as they persevere, as they trek through the snow, and as they take up residence in tents. They epitomize adventure. Unfortunately, technology and time interrupted their progress.
Still, not a one of them is ready to give up on finding Noah – or at least, his big boat – on snow-capped Mount Ararat. Judging from their passion, I suspect that all of them will be back. More power to them. However, the film reveals that in recent years, the Turkish government has severely restricted or denied access to search.
Despite what the Finding Noah team found and didn’t find, the men seemed unanimous in their reflection on the adventure. The team had numerous Christian men in the search, and they were frequently vocal about their faith. Their summary sentiment is captured in the words of the team member who said, “ I had a mountaintop experience with the Lord.”
Their story will be that kind of experience for many viewers.