As I was reading the story of Noah in Genesis 6-7 this morning it initially felt somewhat incomplete. Where was the part where Noah didn’t know what an Ark was? Where was the part where Noah asked God what a cubit was? Of course if you have ever heard Bill Cosby’s Noah routine you know exactly what I am talking about. Now I have nothing bad to say about Mr. Cosby’s comedy; I have often pictured other scenes of the Bible in a very similar way. In fact we have the story of one of Gideon’s conversation with God that could very easily have been a Cosby skit. What I find interesting is that I know that Cosby’s material is not in the Bible but to a certain extent it still colored my reading.
I remember reading reviews of the Veggie Tale movie Jonah that question the Biblical accuracy of the closing act of the Jonah part of the movie. (I really tried to find one of the reviews to link here but that was almost 10 years ago.) The movie goes into the part of the story where Jonah sits outside the city of Ninevah and waits for it to be destroyed. When God spares the city, Jonah gets mad at God. But that part of the story is not always told when it comes to kids versions of Jonah and the Whale. I remember reading it as an adult in amazement.
I must admit that I find how our current culture and ideas shape my reading of the Bible to be interesting. And it is something that I need to always be aware of.
If you haven’t seen (or seen it in a while) the Bill Cosby’s Noah it is worth the watch. It is also worth the watch just to see a very young Bill Cosby.