It was during their captivity in Babylon, around the year 570, that the Israelites were inspired to pen this story about Noah, the ark and the flood. It was by no means an original, or factual story. The first version of this story had been written on clay tablets two thousand years earlier.
In the earliest version of the story dug up by archaeologist, a sky full of gods had a hankering not for barbecue, but for the odor of roasting meat. To satisfy this hunger they created men and women to do the cooking; but when the humans took to evil behavior the gods decided on drowning them all in a great flood.
As the gods were gathering up water reserves for the deluge, one of them, a god name Ea, pleaded for a good man named Utnapishtim; and the other gods allowed Ea to instruct Utnapishtim on the construction of the ark and in gathering pairs of every animal species.
That flood came with only seven days and nights of torrential rain. When Utnapistim thought the waters might have subsided, he sent out a crow, which did not return; then he sent out a dove which did. Finding a dry place, Utnapisjtim tied up, then he offered a huge burnt sacrifice to the gods. Wild with joy over the ascending odor, the gods gathered think as flies.
In rewriting ancient legends the Israelites always corrected them. In this story he did away with all those gods, substituting the one true God.