The Account of the Flood:
6:5 – What God Saw
“earth” is mentioned eight times in the next 7 verses (6:5-13)
“every inclination of the
thoughts of his heart” –
or, “every scheme in man’s imagination”.
”yeser” is “scheme”, “inclination” and also means “desire”
God had formed man to be perfect and beautiful, but man can only form corrupt and repulsive thoughts. These schemes or desires led to actions.
“all the time” – this was not just something that would happen every so often when man would slip into a bad thought and sin. This was the continuous state of man’s being. Evil desires was the chronic condition of man.
The Sin of Noah’s Generation:
6:6 – What God Felt
“grieved” is “nikhem” or “nkhm” and it means “to take a different course of action”. This is seen in Hosea 11:8-9.
“The Lord was grieved” – “Yahweh regretted” is “yinnahem”
This is repeated in 6:7 at the end of the verse:
am grieved that I have made them.” – or “I regret (‘emheh) that I made him.”
This form of “naham” is used 48 times in the OT and 34 of the 48 refer to God.
The Greek LXX (Septuagint) translates the Hebrew “naham” with the Greek “metamelomai” which means “to be sorry, repent, change one’s mind”
Usually God turns from judgment to mercy like at Ninevah.
Twice in the OT God repents and turns to judgment:
“that he had made man”
“his heart was filled with pain” –
3:16 – woman receives pain for her part of sin
3:17 – man receives pain for his part of sin
Here, man’s sin causes God pain.
6:7 – What God Would Do
“wipe” is from the root “mhh” which means “to erase by washing.”
“man, animals, creeping things, birds” – man’s sin effects his environment and those around him.
6:8 – Noah found favor
This verse focuses on God’s “favor” or “grace” toward Noah. An unmerited state.
The next verse, 6:9, focus on Noah’s character.
The order of the verses would seem to indicate “favor” came first, and then Noah’s character followed.
If the verses were reversed then we would think that Noah had good character and thus God responded to that good character and showed him favor.
Noah then responded to God’s offer of salvation or grace. God provided it and Noah responded to it. God gave it, Noah found it.
“This is the account of Noah”
“righteous” is “saddiq” and refers to one who is habitually righteous.
“blameless” – means free from defect. Animals are described with this Hebrew word as being unblemished (Ex. 12:5; Lev. 1:3; 3:1; etc.) This does not mean Noah was a sinless man or without a sin nature. This word could be translated “wholesome” or “sound”.
The sequence of Noah’s Character:
Shem means “name, renown”
Ham means “warm, hot”
Japheth means “enlarged”
A cubit is on average 18 inches. Other cubit sizes are 17.6”, 19.8”, 20.4”, 20.6”.
450 feet long, 75 feet wide, 45 feet tall makes a ship almost impossible to capsize.
The ark would have 1,518,750 cubic feet.
The ark would have as much space as 522 livestock train cars.
The ark was the biggest ship made until 1884.
Gilgamesh Epic – “when their heart led the great gods to produce the flood” (Tablet XI, line 14) and a god Ea speaks to the god Enlil who sent the flood and said “How could you, unreasoning, bring on the deluge?”
Atrahasis Epic – 1200 years after creation the noise and commotion from man on the earth has started keeping Enlil awake at nights. Enlil sends a famine, a drought and eventually a flood to eliminate man and his bothersome noise but Atrahasis, one of the kings on the Sumerian king list, builds a boat and survives the flood.