Orson Pratt discusses Flood; says it was global, but not all at once.

Speech / Court Transcript
Orson Pratt
Scribed Verbatim

Orson Pratt, "Interpretation of Scripture," Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. (Liverpool: William Budge, 1880), 20:9–10

William Budge
Orson Pratt
Latter-day Saints

When we read in the Book of Genesis about the rains which fell from the heavens, causing a flood of waters to deluge the earth, in fulfillment of a certain warning message which had previously been preached to the people then living, by which they were swept away and drowned, we must believe that the inspired writer who penned the words, described the event as it occurred, so far at least as the general facts are concerned, and that the flood spoken of was a literal body of water, and that it did prevail upon all portions of the earth. I do not say that the flood did prevail, at the same moment, upon all the face of the earth; but before the floods abated, every part of the solid portions of the earth that were habitable, were covered by the waters. How this was accomplished is not given by the inspired writer, but is left for us to conjecture. The Lord has a great many ways and means by which he could bring about an event of this nature. For instance, how easy it would be to drown all the inhabitants of the temperate and arctic regions, by just merely stopping the earth from rotating on its axis. Unless there should be another miracle performed to prevent the waters that are heaped up around the equatorial regions from flowing to the polar regions, they would necessarily, as the earth began to cease or rotate more slowly in its axial revolutions, cause the waters of the equatorial region to flow towards the two polar regions. It is an easy matter for a mathematician to demonstrate the depth of the waters in any part or latitude of our globe, should such an event take place or happen. The waters in receding from the great equatorial region would cover up the great mountains on our east, and we, in this altitude, would be buried under water at least over a mile in depth. I do not say that this was the manner which the Lord took in “breaking up the fountains of the great deep.” There may have been other causes unknown to us; but to say there never was such an event is something entirely unwarranted. Still, it may be said, this would not cover all the solid portion of the earth, but leave the equatorial land still further elevated above the ocean, and if all the lands of the earth were to be under water, how could that be accounted for? Very easily. Cause the earth to rotate on its axis more swiftly than what it now does, say for instance, in one-half the time—in 12 hours instead of 24—and you would bury up all the equatorial lands of our globe. How easy a matter it would be for the Lord to cause the earth to rotate more swiftly, and then again to rotate more tardily, and produce the effects ascribed to the flood.

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