Zevachim 113 - Was There Flood in the Land of Israel?
The red heifer was burned in a pit specially excavated for it , but what does this mean? Resh Lakish says that it was pre-inspected to be free of corpse impurity, but Rabbi Yochanan says that it simply means that it was outside the walls of Jerusalem.
The root of their argument is the question whether the Flood extended to the Land of Israel. According to Resh Lakish, it did, and therefore there were remains of people embedded in the earth. According to Rabbi Yochanan, the Flood did not visit Israel, and people's remains were not a concern.
But did not Nebuchadnezzar also kill Jews? - Their remains were cleared away, says Rabbi Yochanan. And Resh Lakish? He says that they were cleared away from Jerusalem, but not outside.
But if the Flood did cover Israel, how did the gigantic sheep called Re'em survive? According to Rabbi Yochanan, all is well, and the Re'em stood in Israel. Says Resh Lakish, Re'em was then a young cub! But Rabbah bar bar Chanah saw a cub of a Re'em, and it was like a mount Tabor! Says Resh Lakish - his nostril fit inside the Arc.
Art: Bonaventura, the Elder Peeters - The Great Flood