Noah's Ark and Mt. Ararat
Setterfield: The story that appeared in Maranatha Prophetic Alert is now a deep embarrassment. I had been in contact with Professor William Shea of the Biblical Research Institute, in Silver Spring, Maryland, who had written what appeared to be a very definitive article about some writing found on Mount Ararat. His analysis was compelling, and I gave a presentation with his permission about it in Australia. If what he said was true, there was very little doubt that the Ark had landed in the vicinity of Ararat, or that its occupants had migrated to some place near there.
It was only after I had made the presentation and given the information to Don Stanton for his Alert, that the good Professor was called out on the whole exercise. To understand why, Professor Shea was beginning to suffer from some old age mental problems. He was looking at otherwise normal photographs and "seeing" ancient writing in them from the random shadows and lines that existed on them. His staff had to call him out on the matter, but you can understand that, since he was one of the key men in his institute, they were reluctant to make too much of a fuss.
So the conclusion is, please ignore totally all that was said in any copy of either my presentation message or what is seen in the Prophetic Alert from Don Stanton.
I have maintained contact with those involved in Ark research. However, over the past 15 years, Mount Ararat has undergone a period in which the melt-back of ice and snow on the mountain has been extreme. Parts of the mountain were exposed which had never been seen in the lifetime of some of the oldest residents in the area. The important thing which emerges from this information is that Noah's Ark is nowhere to be found on that mountain. The present hype by the Chinese ("Christian") group has been proven to be an elaborate hoax. The key person in this deception has been a Kurdish "guide" named "Parachute" (because he will let you down!). The residents of the area have testified as to what he has done in order to get money from the various groups involved. What saddens me is that so many people have accepted this false testimony and are using it to back up the Bible. Some of the fraud is exposed in the website, "The Discovery of Noah's Ark by Paraşut and NAMI: A Fraud?"
That having been said, I must go on to emphasize that my current understanding is that the Ark will not be on Ararat. While the very base of the mountain may be ancient, the vast majority of the mountain is extremely young. It is effectively a volcano of recent age. On one of the peaks, the smell of sulfur exists which indicates activity is still occurring deep underneath. Because of this youthfulness, it is extremely doubtful if the Ark could have ever have landed there.
It may be objected that the Bible seems to state that it was Ararat. However, that is a translation problem. The word "Ararat" literally means "sacred ground." It comes out in the Latin word "ara," which means "altar." This points to the sacrifice that Noah made when the Flood was over. So the "holy ground" could have been on any high mountain after the Flood. There is another possibility that we have considered which is discussed in our Genesis 1-11 Bible study. It is in the section on Babel.