The Building of Noah’s Ark

Scripture Passage: 
Genesis 6:1-22

INTRODUCTION:  The days of Noah are especially important to us because Christ told us that the day of His coming would be like them (Matthew 24:37-39).  This story warns us against falling into the corruption of the world in which we live.  Every student should make it their goal to be like Noah and live holy, separated lives before our God.

  1. THE CORRUPTION OF THE EARTH (Genesis 6:1-5)
    1. Unholy Unions (Genesis 6:1-3)
      1. The sons of God and the daughters of men (Genesis 6:1-2)
        1. In scripture, the title “son(s) of God” is used of angels (Job 1:6; Job 2:1; Job 38:7), of future redeemed Israelites (Hosea 1:10) and of New Testament believers (John 1:12; Romans 8:14; Philippians 2:15).
        2. In addition, God calls Israel, as a nation, “my son, even my firstborn” (Exodus 4:22); scripture calls Adam “the son of God” (Luke 3:38) and Jesus calls Himself “the Son of God” (Matthew 16:16; John 1:34).
      2. Grace lasting 120 years (Genesis 6:3)
        1. This verse does not say that man is limited to a life span of 120 years as some have taught.
        2. God gave mankind 120 years to repent before He destroyed them.
        3. This means that Noah had 120 years to build the ark and preach righteousness (2 Peter 2:5).
    2. Unholy Offspring (Genesis 6:4)
      1. Giants in the earth
      2. Men of renown
    3. Unholy Thoughts (Genesis 6:5)
      1. Man is condemned because “every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5).
      2. This led to evil deeds so that the “earth was filled with violence”.
      3. The word imagination is related to the word image.  Imaginations are related to pictures in our minds or things we imagine ourselves doing.
    4. Unholy Deeds (Genesis 6:5)
  2. THE CHARACTER OF NOAH (Genesis 6:6-13)
    1. God’s Grief (Genesis 6:6-7)
      1. Sorrow at His creation (Genesis 6:6)
      2. A promise to destroy (Genesis 6:7)
      3. These verses are the first time the Bible uses the word repent.
        1. Repentance has two basic steps: sorrow and a change of direction.
        2. Sorrow without a change of direction is not repentance (2 Corinthians 7:9-10).
        3. Also, repentance does not always mean to turn from sin.  Here in this passage God repents.  He is made sorry by man’s corruption and He turns from blessing man to planning man’s destruction.
        4. There are times when repentance occurs without sorrow (Jonah 3:10).
    2. Noah’s Grace (Genesis 6:8-10)
      1. His favor with God (Genesis 6:8)
      2. His character (Genesis 6:9)
        1. A just man
        2. Perfect in his generations
        3. Walked with God (see also Enoch – Genesis 5:21-24)
      3. His sons (Genesis 6:10)
    3. Earth’s Judgment (Genesis 6:11-13)
      1. Corruption (Genesis 6:11-13a)
      2. Destruction (Genesis 6:13b)
  3. THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE ARK (Genesis 6:14-16)
    1. The Materials (Genesis 6:14)
      1. Gopher wood
        1. Gopher wood is only mentioned once in the Bible
        2. Noah probably had to cut down these trees in order to prepare the ark
      2. Pitch
        1. Pitch was a protecting agent that would seal the cracks
        2. It would prevent the water from coming into the ark
    2. The Dimensions (Genesis 6:15)
      1. Length – 300 cubits or over 450 feet
      2. Width – 50 cubits or over 75 feet
      3. Height – 30 cubits or over 45 feet
      4. Some have claimed that the ark could not have held enough animals to save them from destruction.  Several points need to be made:
        1. One: Sea animals did not need to be gathered on the ark.
        2. Two:  God saved the animals by kind.  One pair of dogs could have produced all the different breeds of dogs we have today.  Many so-called species of some animals are actually the same kind.  There are not as many different kinds as some claim.
        3. Three:  Most people give the dimensions of the ark by making a cubit equal to 18 inches.  However, the cubit is based on the length between the tip of the middle finger and the elbow.  Ancient cubits were different sizes but most were from 20 to 22 inches long.  Only the smallest cubit was about 18 inches.  Consider this.  What if the standard cubit in Noah’s day was determined by the arms of the giants who lived in the earth?  At least, the cubit was very likely longer than 18 inches.
        4. Four:  Measured with 18-inch cubits, the ark is still a very large ship.  The three stories of the ark would have over 100,000 square feet of approximately 2 1/3 acres.  If some of the rooms (Genesis 6:14) were built as cages on top of one another (the stories averaged 15 or more feet high), then much more space would have been available.
    3. The Features (Genesis 6:16)
      1. One window
      2. One door
      3. Three stories
      4. With rooms (see Genesis 6:14)
  4. THE COVENANT WITH NOAH (Genesis 6:17-22)
    1. The Method of Destruction (Genesis 6:17)
    2. The Promise of Deliverance (Genesis 6:18)
      1. A covenant established
      2. A family preserved
    3. The Loading of the Ark (Genesis 6:19-21)
      1. The animals (Genesis 6:19-20)
      2. The food (Genesis 6:21)
    4. The Obedience of Noah (Genesis 6:22)

CONCLUSION:  Noah is the hero of this story.  He was righteous and found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Genesis 6:8).  He walked with God (Genesis 6:9).  He was chosen to build the ark (Genesis 6:14) and he did “according to all that God commanded him” (Genesis 6:22).  What can your students do to be more like Noah?

David Reagan and Andrew Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 11:5

The righteousness of the perfect shall direct his way: but the wicked shall fall by his own wickedness.