Over the last week, I have been reminded of the importance of Noah’s Ark aside from Noah and his family being saved from the great flood. Much like the Great War (World War II), the great flood was a way to put an end to an evil existence. That is, the great flood was sent to end an ever-growing evil human existence and begin anew with Noah, his family, and the animals. The significance of the event is important for many different reasons but for many, the correct importance is not given to the event and the emphasis placed on it is typically wrong
There are many versions of the story made available for children whether it’s through cartoons, movies, books and even playsets that give children the idea that something did happen but rarely are they told why the event had to happen and what it was over. While you do have to give children a different context for them to understand something, the different features would have you believe that the flood was a happy event when, in reality, very little of it was happy. After all, the flood was sent to destroy civilization with the exception of animals and Noah’s family (Genesis 6, 7).
While there was little happiness about the flood and why it had to happen, there are different truths of the event that makes believers happy. First, we are reminded of how forgiving God is. Remember, as the world was increasing in population so was the wickedness of the population. Things had become so wicked that God had to do something so He intervened. While none were perfect, God chose Noah and his family because he found Noah to be a righteous man and blameless among the people of his time (Genesis 6:9). God was not telling Noah that he was sinless or perfect but rather, he was the only one he could use to begin the repopulation of the human race
Hebrews 8:12 tells us “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.” When we look beyond Genesis 6, we find that while Noah was righteous compared to the contemporaries of his day, if his righteousness stood on its own, he would not have been able to save his own sons (Ezekiel 14:20). Therefore, we know that while Noah was the most ethical of those of his time, he was still a man that fell short of God’s glory and that it was God’s mercy and love that saved the Earth, not Noah’s.
Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord—Ezekiel 14:20
GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but
deliver their own souls by their righteousness.”
The story of the Ark is one of forgiveness but it’s also a love story. Think about how God forgave his creation despite what the world had become. Luke 23:34 reads “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots” but perhaps more importantly, “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Simply put, God loved His creation so much that He wanted to save it but in order to save it, the bloodline had to be pure and the purest available was Noah.
God did not limit His love to just humans but also, animals. Many find it hard to understand why God would also destroy the animal population but we are to assume that animal life was also corrupt as scripture reads ”And God said unto Noah, the end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” Although we do not know what happened or why, scripture gives us evidence that something happened to the animal life which caused God to recreate it, too. Upon exiting the Ark, Noah and his family and the animals were all that populated the Earth which is the next lesson from the event: starting over.
While God created man for His original purpose, the fall of man occurred and this changed all things. In other words, the original purpose of creation was changed once the fall occurred which meant God had to change things. Sin was never part of the original plan but Satan was determined to destroy God’s creation and he did so by morally contaminating all things he came in contact with. The most important aspect that we must remember is that while God is sovereign over all things, He is not the creator of sin: ”This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5).
However, God being the all loving and all merciful God that He is, God would overlook the corruption of His creation and redeem it through the Ark. The Ark is more than just a big boat that held people and animals but we a survival resource for man. Through the Ark, God did much more than just recreate the Earth but with the Ark, God gave us another chance and not because any of us are worthy of it but because of God’s mercy. Although we are filled with sin and evil, God is not and while sin is not from God as it comes from the creature, God is perfect and through God, we are made complete: “For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified” (Hebrews 10:14).