Mythology and the Bible, Who Knew?
Literature from the past is especially significant in understanding ancient cultures. Literature from the times surrounding the life of Christ often came in the form of religious stories. Bible stories are one type example of this category of literature. Another example is the myth. A myth is a traditional story about a gods, kings, and heroes, comparable to those of the Bible. These stories were often handed down through generations and eventually recorded into a book. As one reads Mythology by Edith Hamilton, one may notice several striking similarities to the stories of the Bible. The story of the deluge from Chapter three of Mythology reveals parallels to the story of the flood from Genesis. Genesis, written about 1200-1500 B.C., is much older than the deluge myth written in the fifth century; thus proving the basis of Aeschylus’ story is the Genesis story. In my opinion, Aeschylus’ tale of the deluge is based on the story of the flood from the Bible, taking note of their similarities in purpose, events, and results.
First of all, both stories begin with a wicked people. In Mythology, the people of the stone race had grown so wicked the Zeus decided a flood would be necessary for him to destroy the people. The book reads that Zeus decided “to mingle storm and tempest over boundless earth and make an utter of mortal man (Hamilton, 74).” Similarly, the Bible says that God was displeased with his people and regretted creating them. It reads “So the Lord said, ‘I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth- men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and bird of the air- for I am grieved that I have made them (Genesis 6:7, NIV)!’” Each story shares the basic idea
that a god was displeased with his creation and resolved to destroy them. In short, both gods shared the same motives and purpose for the flood.
Next, the events of both stories show a stark reflection. According to both stories, a righteous man was chosen to live through the flood. In Mythology, Zeus found two faithful worshipers who had built a chest to save themselves. They were...