We are not told anything about the experiences of Noah’s family within the Ark during the long months that the waters of the Flood prevailed upon the earth. No mention of this is made in the Scriptural account. But there must have been a serene sense of safety in the minds of Noah and his household as the huge vessel moved upon the surface of the waters.
“God remembered Noah” (verse 1). He never forgot him, not even for one moment. For a whole year, this rescued family was in the Ark. For five months, the vessel was floating on the waters – amidst countless perils – before it grounded on Ararat. Such is also the case in all the wildest storms and floods of life – God cares for His children. He is Lord of all the forces of nature. Not a drop of water, even in the angriest billows, ever breaks away from the control of the God Who is our truest and most loving Friend.
At length, the appointed months had all passed. The family in the great vessel had been saved, but what was to be the end of it all? Over time, the waters subsided and were at last dried up. Noah and his family must have been happy indeed when the Lord commanded them to leave the Ark!
The earth had been cleansed of its sin. All the works of men had been swept away. Noah’s family were now the only human beings left. They were to begin life in the new world. We can think of the feelings of the little company as they went out of the Ark and stood once more on dry ground. They had been spared from the universal destruction, and they were grateful. They had been spared for a purpose, too – namely, to establish the human race all over again. They must have felt a deep sense of responsibility as they stepped out and remembered that it was their responsibility now to possess the renovated earth for the God Who had spared them for this very purpose. What would they make of the world which was now committed to them?
They began their new life in the right manner: “Noah builded an altar unto the Lord … and offered burnt offerings on the altar.” Several things were implied in this devout act. It expressed Noah’s gratitude to God for the great deliverance which he and his family had experienced. It put the Lord first in the new life upon which they were about to enter. It was a devotion and a consecration of Noah and his family to God. In essence, they were laying themselves – their lives, their hopes, and their hearts – upon the altar. This act claimed the renewed earth for the Lord, just as the discoverer of a new land hoists the flag of his country and claims the territory for his king. It was a very proper beginning of the new life they were to live. The people which had perished had formerly desecrated the earth with their sins, and now this little band of redeemed ones were pledging themselves to keep the earth clean.
This pious act of Noah has its suggestions for us also. After every deliverance from trouble, danger, sickness, or trial – and even after rising from our bed each morning – we should, first of all, thank God for His mercy. To Him we are indebted for every comfort and every blessing, and we should never fail to express our gratitude! Like Noah, we should put God first in every new plan and undertaking, and at the opening of every new day. “In the beginning God” should be the motto of all our life. “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness” is our Master’s summing up of all practical duty. “Acknowledge him in all thy ways, and he shall direct thy paths” is an inspiring rule of life, with a wonderful promise added. We should renew our consecration to God at each new beginning. Alas! Are there not many who never think of God, nor give Him any honor anywhere, at any time in their lives? Let us not be like them. We should claim for God all that our feet stand upon! We are sent out by Christ to conquer the world for Him. Every advance we make, every gain of influence, and every new success and prosperity – we should take possession of it for our King, and in His name.
It is interesting to note that legends of a great flood exist in cultures and countries all over the world, such as Hawaii, Peru, the Native Americans, Italy, Ancient Babylonia, India, and many more. Even though they all these “flood stories” have differences between each other and the historical record of Noah’s Flood in the Bible, there are enough similarities in these “legends” to show us that such a catastrophic event really did happen in the past – so catastrophic, in fact, that it was forever etched in the minds of every people group that settled every region of the globe! Over the centuries, each culture’s version of this great flood has been modified or embellished; while the Divinely inspired Scriptures have faithfully preserved the true details of what actually happened.
Dear Lord, as we see how Noah and his family remained perfectly safe and secure in the Ark, in the time of such awful destruction of the whole world; we think of the infinite and inexhaustible resources that are in Christ Jesus, our true Ark, for all the needs of all His people. The everlasting covenant of grace is founded on the blood and righteousness of our Lord Jesus, and there is no lack of His abounding love and mercy to satisfy every necessity of His people. Gracious God! Grant that we may be like Noah’s dove, and never be found among those who can rest satisfied outside the Ark. We beseech You, Lord Jesus, to put forth Your hand and take us in to be with You, so that we may live forever with You! Amen.
Join other families all around the globe! Receive the full-color, freely downloadable format of these thoughts in your email every day, and enjoy a FREE copy of my e-book A Call to Family Worship! It’s my prayer that you and your family will be equipped to receive abundant blessings from the hand of the Lord as you study His Word and worship in His presence together.
photo by Shubhankar Bhowmick | Unsplash.com