Read Genesis 6:13-7:10. What lesson can we learn from this amazing account of early human history?
Like Daniel, Noah is a prophet who predicts the end of the world. The Hebrew word for the “ark” (tevah) (Genesis 6:14) is the same rare Egyptian loanword that was used for the “ark,” in which the infant Moses was hidden, who was preserved in order to save Israel from Egypt (Exodus 2:3).
Also, some have seen in the general structure of the ark parallels to the ark of the tabernacle (Exodus 25:10). Just as the ark of the Flood will permit the survival of humankind, so the ark of the covenant, a sign of God’s presence in the midst of His people (Exodus 25:22), points to God’s work of salvation for His people.
The phrase “Noah did; according to all that God commanded” (Genesis 6:22, NKJV) concludes the preparatory section. The verb ‘asah, “did,” referring to Noah’s action, responds to the verb ‘asah, “make,” in God’s command, which started the section (Genesis 6:14) and is repeated five times (Genesis 6:14-16). This echo between God’s command and Noah’s response suggests Noah’s absolute obedience to what God had told him to do, to ‘asah. It is also interesting that this phrase is also used in the context of the building of the ark of the covenant (Exodus 39:32, Exodus 39:42; Exodus 40:16).
“God gave Noah the exact dimensions of the ark and explicit directions in regard to its construction in every particular. Human wisdom could not have devised a structure of so great strength and durability. God was the designer, and Noah the master builder.” — Ellen G. White, Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 92.
Again, the parallel between the two “arks” reaffirms their common redemptive function. Noah’s obedience is thus described as a part of God’s plan of salvation. Noah was saved simply because he had that faith to do what God commanded him to do (see Hebrews 11:7). He was an early example of a faith that manifests itself in obedience, the only kind of faith that matters (James 2:20).
In short, though Noah “found grace in the eyes of the LORD” (Genesis 6:8), it was in response to this grace, already given him, that Noah acted faithfully and obediently to God’s commands. Isn’t that how it should be with all of us?
Read 2 Peter 2:5-9. Why was only Noah’s family saved? What lesson can we learn from the Noah story regarding our role in warning the world about coming judgment?