How were the nations scattered and was the world one continent, divided in the days of Peleg?




I read the page titled "Gog and Magog" and found it very interesting, as well as helpful. But there is one thing I question: I thought, according to the Bible, that Egyptians and Libyans came from Mizraim, Ham's son, not from Put. Could you clarify this for me? Also would you comment on how these nations were scattered to give birth to the south Sahara nations known as black people?

In reading the Bible. I think that the earth was divided in the time of Peleg which means that the earth was once one continent. Do you understand it this way?

The Hebrew word for the Libyans is Puwt, for Ethiopians it is Kuwsh, and for Egyptians it is Mitsrayim. These same three words in Genesis 6:10 are translated as Put, Cush, and Mizraim.

According to Bill Cooper's book, After the Flood, under Mizraim, he stated "A collective name, these people settled in Egypt. Modern Israelis still use the name for that country ..." Under Put, Mr. Cooper writes, "The country in which the descendants of Put settled is well known to us from Egyptian records, which render the name Put or Punt. (Josephus calls it Phut.) It is always spoken of as closely associated with Egypt, and its close geographical proximity to Egypt is confirmed by an inscription form the archives of Darius the Great, king of Persia from 522-486 BC. Here the land of Puta is shown as lying in the proximity of Cyrenaica, i.e. on the North African coast to the west of Egypt."

In regards to the scattering of the nations, let me refer you to the lesson "The Table of Nations" in the study Genesis. Included is a rough map showing where the descendants of each of Noah's sons settled in the world. The dark skinned nations of Africa most likely are a subset of Ham's descendents.

The name Peleg in Hebrew means a division or an earthquake. "To Eber were born two sons: the name of one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided; and his brother's name was Joktan." (Genesis 10:25). The word for earth can mean the physical planet, but it is also used in the figurative sense to refer to all the nations on the planet. We use the word earth in a similar fashion in English. Thus, Peleg doesn't have to refer to a physical splitting of the continents, but it can refer to the the splitting of the nations of the earth. Given the context in with Genesis 10:25 is found, the writer is commenting that the splitting of mankind into nations with separate tongues (described in details at the beginning of Genesis 11) occurred about the time Peleg was born.

If the world was a single continent at the time of creation, the most likely time that the continent was divided was during the great Flood. See "Was there only one continent before the Flood? " A splitting of the continents after the flood (in the days of Peleg) would be highly unlikely as the enormity of the event would have been recorded.

See also:

Questions and Answers regarding Genesis
Questions and Answers regarding the Old Testament
Questions and Answers regarding Race