Gen 7:1 Begins with the voice of God’s command to Noah, “Go into the Ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.” So a man’s righteousness spills over and avails to the salvation of his entire family.
And this begins to have the echoes of what God spoke to Abraham in Gen 18:19, “For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice, that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him”. So Noah had passed the test of faithfulness, and now the LORD was brining to pass all that he had spoken to him (Gen 7: 18 – “I will establish my covenant with you”…). And we need to take note that this is the first mention of the word covenant in the entire Bible.
In this God’s command to Noah we can see clearly that which the God of creation values, and get a hint and insight into His personality and preferences. God in effect says to Noah, “Noah, I am doing these things with and through you because righteousness is the backdrop of this picture”.
This also reminds us of Proverb 14:34 that declares “Righteousness exalts a nation. But sin is a reproach to any people.” Thus Noah was exalted because of righteousness.
Now concerning this righteousness, the other parts of the scripture describe and elaborate on it, as Hebrews 11:7 plainly tells us “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an Ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the whole world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.”
So it is plain that Noah was righteous because of his faith and trust in God, and not because he had attained some human perfectionistic score; as we shall still see in this good man’s story as in man’s story contained in the Bible, they were all still men of fallen adamic nature (Gen 9:18-25).
Gen 7:2 Remember that Gen 6:20 had stated that God would cause all the animals to come to Noah to be kept alive in the ark. This in itself is a mighty and stupendous miracle showing who really is the boss and ruler over creation.
The prophet Isaiah later on declared concerning the stubbornness and obstinacy of God’s people Israel, “The Ox knows its master, the donkey knows its owner’s, manger, but Israel does not know, My people do not understand” (Isaiah 1:3).
Question; How were these hosts of animals able to hear, understand, and come to Noah, when no other human being living in Noah’s time could sense what God was about to do?
Surely, Noah had nowhere to hide all these animals that were gathering and flocking around him because they had heard the prompting of God’s call. And so even if Noah’s human audiences had refused to hear the voice of his preaching (2 Peter 2:5), could they not have listened to the preaching of the animals like Balaam the covetous prophet?
Or it was the case, as our Lord Jesus later on revealed concerning this generation, that they had indeed not recovered from their banqueting and weddings, and the wine of their feasts (Matt 24:37-39) when Noah, his family, and the animals entered the ark.
Here we see the first reference to clean and unclean animals; 7 pairs of clean animals – good for food and for sacrificial purposes (we conclude), and 1 pair of unclean animals for the preservation of their species.
And thus we must conclude that God had revealed these things to the people in Noah’s day; after all, had it not been said by God that His spirit had striven with man in vain to bring men to repentance (Gen 6:3)?
Later on God through Moses would give the children of Israel a detailed list of what was clean and fit to eat, and what was unclean and not to be touched for their ceremonial purity.
Gen 7:3 Now we come to the matter of male female; we see the pattern in Noah and his wife (verses 7, and 13), his sons and their wives (verses 7, 13, and 23), and the animals and their mates (verses 2, 3, 9, and 16).
Here is the pattern revealed to us in creation for matrimony and for reproduction; and so how can today’s people find harmony in male and male, or female and female, unless a destitute and depraved mind has been given to them to reject the truth, and believe a lie to their own damnation (Rom 1:21-31; 2Thess 2:10-12)?
Again, let the simple animals teach those who think they have knowledge, like Job prescribed in Job 12:7-9 “But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you.
Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this?” And hence we see the pattern of male and female that God has established in creation and in scripture which those who rebel against reject their own welfare and embrace their self-imposed damnation and doom.
Gen 7:4 God promised Noah “Seven days from now I will send rain on the earth, forty days and forty nights”. And God kept His word; seven days from that day the rain started. This strikes a note as the first forty days and forty nights event recorded in scriptures.
The rain fell forty days and forty nights; Moses was twice on the mountain forty days and forty nights (Ex 24:18; Ex 34:28, Deut 9:18, 25; Deut 10:10); Elijah traveled for forty days and forty nights; and even our Lord Jesus fasted for forty days and forty nights. So what does this number of days signify?
We do not wish to start a new doctrine here, but it appears to us that these days are symbolic as a dispensational marker depicting the unique pattern or style that God dealt with people within different eras of salvation-history.
Like as in this Noah’s case, the forty days and forty night’s rain was to close one era or dispensation, and to open a new chapter with mankind, like we shall see indeed that God did when He pronounced a new set of laws and ordinances for men to observe after Noah had sacrificed coming out of the Ark (Gen 8:20 to 9:17). Perhaps we shall deliberate on this further, as occasion will permit.
Gen 7:5 Here again Noah’s total and complete obedience in this matter is highlighted, for Noah did all the LORD had commanded him.
Gen 7:6 When we first encountered Noah in Gen 5:32 we were told that Noah was 500 years old when he became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Now Genesis 7:6 tells us that Noah was 600 years old when the flood waters came on the earth.
This span of 100 years gives us a rough guess about the window of time within which Noah preached to his generation of God’s judgment to come, and the time within which he built the boat in obedience to God’s commandment. 100 years of preaching, and 100 years of building, and 100 years of God’s patience and warning to that evil generation; so that indeed we can see the endurance and perseverance of Noah, like someone who does not faint even running against horses (Jeremiah 12:5).
Gen 7:7-10 They all entered the ark as God commanded Noah, and 7 days after the flood waters came upon the earth as God had told Noah it would. This also highlights for our own safety and welfare, the importance of our obedience and subjection to spiritual leaders and authority figures who obey and follow God like Paul said to the Corinthians, “Follow me as I follow Christ (1Cor 11:1; 1Cor 4:16).
Gen 7:11-16 See how deliberately, boldly, and precisely the Bible articulates the very day that the rain of the great flood started; the 600th day of Noah’s life, on the 7th day of the second month, which we by our present calendar may think to be the 7th of February, but Jewish calendar starts in the month of Abib (Exodus 12:2; 13:14; Deut. 16:1) which aligns with our own 1st of April.
And so it is likely that the date of the start of the flood deluge was the 7th May; but that’s not the point that the Bible makes in the accuracy of stating the precise date of the commencement of the flood.
The Bible is making a statement and claim as the solely accurate divine and inerrant record of God’s words and God’s deeds throughout human history. No other book claims this level of authority and accuracy of this humanly un-dateable event. Only the Ancient of Days can give us the precise date when this event occurred; and we do well to keep silent and listen at his feet (Zech 2:13).
“Then the LORD shut him in.” He is the One who closes and no man opens (Rev 3:7); the One who holds us, and none can pluck us out of His hand (John 10:28-29); as the Psalmist prayed hide me in the shadow of Your wings (Ps 17:8), in the shelter of His sacred tent (Psalms 27:5). Or as the Lord hid Jeremiah His prophet from the evil king (Jer 17:8).
Gen 7:17-24 For forty days the flood kept coming on the earth, and as the waters increased they lifted the ark high above the earth. The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. They rose greatly on the earth, and all the high mountains under the entire heavens were covered. The waters rose and covered the mountains to a depth of more than twenty-two feet (15 cubits, 6.9 meters) above the highest peaks.
Who wants to argue with the Ancient of Days on these facts? Let them go ahead; but these are the clearly written words in the Book of His testimony, and when we struggle to believe that which is plainly written, the very best that we demonstrate is our finiteness and human limitation within the scoop of God’s creation; and the very best we can do under these circumstances is to cry out like the father of the epileptic boy to the Lord Jesus, “Lord, I believe; help thou my unbelief (Mark 9:24)”.
And the result of His un-abatable flood? Every living thing with breath in its nostrils perished because of man’s sin, and stubbornness, and disobedience towards God. How can we describe such divine anger and wrath that refused to listen to the cry of every living thing in their desperate cry and struggle for the breath of life?
What a high and costly price to pay for sin. And truly sin is too expensive to sponsor, for as Romans 6:23 plainly tells us, the wages of sin is death; so we can learn a very great lesson about provoking God to the limit of His fierce wrath and divine anger; you may not live to tell the story afterwards.
The waters flooded the earth for a hundred and fifty days.
LIFE APPLICATIONS OF GENESIS 7
1) God’s character and nature are revealed in scriptures as holy and righteous, and He calls and expects those who profess His name to conform to righteous living by the transforming power of His Word.
2) Just as Noah’s righteousness and faithful walk with God yielded benefit and blessing to his family, your righteous and godly lifestyle will yield the benefit of peace and divine protection to your own home and family at large.
3) God always keeps the promises that He makes, and we become privileged to see their manifestation when we obey Him and walk steadfastly and faithfully in our life’s dealings.
4) God’s created pattern for sexual orientation has always been established, and is supported by the scriptures, and we commit a grave transgression to reverse or encourage the reversal of the created order in that aspect of life.
5) In an attempt to prove their sophistication people have demonstrated that they have a lot to learn from the simple animal kingdom. Animals show by their simple lifestyle and obedience to the created order that they are creatures under the rule and government of the sovereign creator, and humans will do well to take a cue from that.
6) The Bible gives us facts and records of the things that were, things that God did far far before we were ever born into this world. Its accuracy and reliability have been attested to by history. Therefore we do well, and ourselves a world of good to depend on the authority, accuracy, and reliability of God’s written revelation to humanity.
7) We should learn never to trifle with sin to provoke God to righteous, fierce, and holy anger. The people of Noah’s day did so and found out what God’s wrath felt like. The people of Sodom and Gomorrah also knew what God’s wrath felt like. Also God’s disobedient people felt His fierce wrath that they endured in the hands of their enemies in their numerous captivities to foreign powers.
No one continuously testing the limits of God’s divine wrath gets away unscathed when divine wrath is incurred. Scriptures say “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God,” and so we should be very well advised.