In 1945, a cache of apocrypha (non-canonical religious texts) written by Gnostic Christians was discovered near Nag Hammadi in southern Egypt. Among them was a Gnostic retelling of the first 6 chapters of the book of Genesis: The Hypostasis of the Archons. The fifth chapter tells the story of the flood:
The Archons took counsel with one another.
“Let us cause a flood with our hands and obliterate all that lives, from man to beast,” they said.
When Sabaoth, the ruler of the archons, came to know of their decision, he went to Noah.
“Upon Mount Sir, build yourself an ark from wood that does not rot and hide in it with your children and the beasts and the birds of heaven from small to large.”
Norea came to Noah, wanting to board the ark. When he would not let her, she blew upon the ark and caused it to be consumed by fire. Noah rebuilt the ark for a second time.
This short chapter still contains some interesting things:
- The ruler of the archons, probably Sabaoth (or possibly his father, Samael), has returned, taking the place of God in the previous chapter.
- The other Archons decide to cause the flood, and Sabaoth goes against their plan to save Noah
- Norea, the daughter of Eve, tries to secure a place on the ark.
- She is able to burn it up simply by blowing on it
Image By Jacopo Bassano