Preparing for the Flood
Text: Genesis 6:9-22
- Read the story. Take time to familiarize yourselves with the text. Share your first impressions. What do you find particularly interesting/noteworthy? What questions do you have regarding the text?
- Note repetitions of words and phrases in the text. Do you notice any patterns? How is the text structured? Why is it structured in this way? What is emphasized through the structure? What does this tell you about God? What is he focused on?
- Read verses 12-13. Why are we explicitly told that God saw how corrupted the earth was when the same information was already given in the previous verse? What does the expression “God saw” remind you of? What does God’s seeing always involve? Why is it important that God sees before he executes judgment? Note also that the word “destroy” in verse 13 is the same Hebrew word that is translated “corrupt(ed)” in verses 11-12. Why is this significant? What does it tell you about God’s judgment? What does it tell you about God’s character?
- Why is humanity consistently referred to as flesh in this narrative? What does this term reveal about the underlying problem that leads to the situation described in verse 11? See e.g. Rom 7:13-8:17. How can we avoid this mindset?
- Read verses 18-20. Note the “unnecessary” repetition of the expression “with you/to you” in these verses. Why is this emphasized so much? What does it reveal about the process of salvation? How is everything in the narrative saved?
- Read verse 22. Why is Noah’s obedience to all God said emphasized? Was Noah saved because he obeyed or because he had faith? Or both? Keep in mind that there had never been a flood before. What is the relationship between faith and obedience? Note Hebrews 11:7; James 2:14-26. In what areas of your life do you want to follow Noah’s example and put your faith into practice this coming week?
- Where do you find the theme of salvation in this story? Where do you find Jesus?
Infos about the text
Keywords and -phrases
- All (11x)
- earth (8x)
- Ark (7x)
- make/do (7x)
- Noah (6x)
- God (5x)
- life/living thing (4x)
- all flesh (4x)
- corrupt/destroy (4x)
- according to its/their kind (3x)
- sons (3x)
- cubits (3x)
- with you (3x)
- wife (2x)
- violence (2x)
- to you (2x)
- flood of water (1x)
- covenant (1x)
A Narrative: Righteous Noah, corrupt earth (vv 9-12)
B God’s speech: I will corrupt all flesh (v 13)
C God’s speech: You shall make an ark (vv 14-16)
B’ God’s speech: I will bring a flood upon all flesh (v 17)
C’ God’s speech: You shall go into the ark (vv 18-21)
A’ Narrative: Righteous Noah (v 22)
Genesis 6:1-8 and Genesis 7:1-24
Terminological connections to 6:1-8
God, Noah, wife, sons, earth, birds, cattle, creeping things, flesh, ground, see, all, nehmen, go in/bring, make
Terminological connections to 7:1-24
God, Noah, ark, cattle, male, female, take, two, birds, keep alive, earth, ground, all, do/make, sons, wife, flood, command, breath of life, flesh
Intertextual Connections (selection)
Terminological connections: God sees, life, birds, animals, according to their kind, food, earth, water
Thematic connections: forming (vv 14-16) and filling (vv 18-20), Noah is a new Adam, flood is de-creation
Thematic parallels: command to build which is faithfully carried out (compare Gen 6:22 and Exod 40:16), exact measurements given, sits on a mountain, three decks/three divisions, those who enter by faith will be saved
Besides the flood story, the Hebrew term for “ark” occurs only in Exod 2:3 and 2:5, where Moses’ mother makes a basket of bulrushes to hide her son. Just like Noah, Moses is saved in an ark and just like Noah, he later brings people safely through the waters into the promised land/new earth.
Jesus in the text (selection)
So when the centurion saw what had happened, he glorified God, saying, “Certainly this was a righteous Man!” (Luk 23:47)
I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me, but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here. (John 14:30-31)
For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be. (Matt 24:37-39)