Genesis 6:17
And behold, I will bring floodwaters upon the earth to destroy every creature under the heavens that has the breath of life. Everything on the earth will perish.
Righteousness and PeaceR.A. Redford Genesis 6:9-22
Flood of WatersW. Adamson.Genesis 6:17-22
Lessons from the FloodG. Gilfillan.Genesis 6:17-22
The FloodBp. Thorold.Genesis 6:17-22
The History of the DelugeBp. Harold Browne.Genesis 6:17-22
The Impotence of FloodsJ. Parker, D. D.Genesis 6:17-22
The Record of the FloodDean Vaughan.Genesis 6:17-22

Prediction of deluge and way of escape were alike trials of faith; beyond reach of foresight; rejected or neglected by the world. Key to the typical meaning, 1 Peter 3:20, 21. Baptism the initial seal of the Christian covenant. Text therefore sets forth salvation through Christ.

I. "Make thee an ark." Why? BECAUSE SENTENCE OF DEATH RESTS UPON ALL MEN (Romans 5:12). As in the destruction of first-born (Exodus 11:5). No exceptions. Covenant people saved only by the blood; so here (cf. Job 9:30). Men, even now, are slow to believe this. Maxims of society contradict it. From childhood trained to live as if no danger, as if many things more important than salvation. And when preacher proclaims (Acts 2:40), men listen and approve and go on as before. Yet this is the first step towards salvation, the first work of the Holy Spirit - to convince careless (Matthew 16:26) and well-living people that they cannot save themselves. Until this is done Christ has no attractiveness (Isaiah 53:2). Who would shut himself up in the ark if no deluge coming? Who would trust it if another way would afford safety?

II. "Make thee an ark." IT IS GOD'S APPOINTED WAY OF SAFETY. "The Lord hath made known his salvation." As surely as the deluge is according to his word, so surely is the way of deliverance (Romans 5:20). But mark the way. Can you trust that which seems so frail? At the root of sin lies unbelief of God's truth. This caused the fall. God says, Will you trust me? One will say, I live a good life; is not that the main thing? (cf. 1 Corinthians 3:11). Another, I pray that God would love me, and be reconciled to me. Does he not love thee? (Titus 3:4). Is he not longing for thee? (Isaiah 1:18). And is not this unbelief of what God says? Thou needest indeed to pray that the Holy Spirit should open thine eyes to what God has done. But that thy prayer may be answered there must be the will to be taught (Psalm 85:8).

III. "Make thee an ark." THE TEST OF FAITH. There is a faith which does nothing, which merely- accepts a doctrine. Such was not that of Noah. His life's work was to act on what he believed. The object of our faith is Jesus Christ, the personal, living, loving Savior; not merely the doctrine that he died and rose again. "Make thee an ark" is more than knowledge that he is the Deliverer. It is taking refuge in him, and walking in his steps. - M.

I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh.
I. The first fact that strikes us in the story of the flood is this: that God, on account of the wickedness to which the world had grown, had made up His mind to sweep it away, once and for all.

II. Out of the seed of Noah God had determined to people the earth once more with a race that would not be so wicked as the one He destroyed.

III. Noah was told to go into the ark because his life was to be saved from the flood. God has provided another ark for us; He tells us to go into it and be saved.

IV. Noah's family was taken with him into the ark, showing the value God sets on family life.

V. God gave it as a reward to Noah for his righteousness that his children went with him into the ark. A holy and loving example preaches a sermon to those who watch it, and remains in the memory of the godless son and the godless daughter long after the parents have been laid in the grave.

(Bp. Thorold.)

A long period elapsed between the commencement of the building of the ark and the actual flood. During that period we notice —

1. The strength of Noah's faith. God has told him of a deluge of which there is no appearance; He has commanded him to build a strange vessel for no apparent purpose; He has told him that one hundred and twenty years of toil must elapse before the vessel can be of any use to him. And yet, in the face of all these difficulties, Noah forms and keeps his resolution to obey God.

2. Notice the reception which Noah's work and message probably met with. The first feeling excited would be one of derision and mirth, then would come wonder, then pity, then disappointment and disgust, and lastly, perhaps, a silent contempt.


1. How absolute is God's control over the natural world.

2. The evil of sin, and the light in which it appears to the eye of God.

3. It reminds us of another deluge, of which all unreconciled sinners stand in jeopardy.


1. It swept away an effete and evil generation, which had become of no use, except to commit sin and thus deprave and weaken the general stock of humanity.

2. The flood was calculated to overawe mankind, and to suggest the idea that other such interpositions might be expected when they were required.

3. The flood furnished an opportunity to God of coming more nearly and closely to men.

4. The flood brought the human family nearer to the promised land of Canaan.

(G. Gilfillan.)

The history of the deluge is alleged in the New Testament as a type of the deep waters of sin, in which a lost world is perishing, and from which there is no escape but in that ark which God has prepared for us. The eight souls saved from the deluge are types of that little flock which rides safely and triumphantly, though the floods lift up their waves and the billows break over them. And their safety is assured to them, because they are in Christ.

I. At the root of all Christianity lies THAT DEEP MYSTERIOUS TRUTH, THE SPIRITUAL UNION OF THE REDEEMER WITH THOSE WHOM HE REDEEMED. To this truth most emphatically witnesses all the New Testament teaching about the ark as a symbol and a prophecy. For —

1. The ark is a figure of Christ. The ark floated over the waste of waters, as Christ dwelt and toiled and suffered in the wilderness of this world, and amid the waters of affliction.

2. The ark is a figure of the redeemed of Christ. The Church, which is Christ's body, is also the ark of refuge from the wrath of God. This life is still to the Church a conflict, a trial, a pilgrimage, a voyage. The crown shall be at the resurrection of the just.

II. The practical thoughts to which this subject leads us differ but little from the doctrinal. Is not the substance and the end of all — safety in Christ, rest in Christ, and at last glory in Christ? Those only who have rested in the ark will rest upon Mount Ararat. The life of the Christian is begun on earth; it is perfected in heaven. When the voyage is over, the Saviour, who has been to us the ark upon the waters, shall be to us, in the eternal mountains of the Lord, rest and peace and light and glory.

(Bp. Harold Browne.)

I. Consider the record of THE FLOOD AS A HISTORY: a history having a two-fold aspect — an aspect of judgment, and an aspect of mercy.

1. "God," St. Peter says, "spared not the old world," He "brought in a flood upon the world of the ungodly." He who made can destroy. Long trifled with, God is not mocked: and he who will not have Him for his Father must at last know Him as his Judge.

2. The record of judgment passes on into a record of mercy. Mercy was shown:

(1)in preservation;

(2)in reconstruction.


1. The water through which Noah and his family passed into their ark was like the water of holy baptism, through which a Christian, penitent and believing, finds his way into the Church of the living God.

2. St. Peter exhibits the flood to us also as a prophecy. The flood of waters becomes in its turn the prediction of a last flood of fire. He who foretold the one — and notwithstanding long delay the word was fulfilled — may be believed when He threatens the other; and no pause or respite can defeat the certainty of the performance.

3. There is one special warning appended by our Lord Jesus Christ Himself to the Scriptural record of the great deluge: "As the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be."

(Dean Vaughan.)

Mythology tells how Jupiter burned with anger at the wickedness of the iron age. Having summoned a council of the gods, he addressed them — setting forth the awful condition of the things upon the earth, and announcing his determination to destroy all its inhabitants. He took a thunderbolt, and was about to launch it upon the world, to destroy it by fire, when he bethought himself that it might enkindle the heavens also. He then resolved to drown it by making the clouds pour out torrents of rain: —With his clench'd fist
He squeezed the clouds:
Then, with his mace, the monarch struck the ground;
With inward trembling earth received the wound,
And rising streams a ready passage found.

(W. Adamson.)

The Almighty is about to do here what some of us in our imperfect wisdom have often wished to see done: we have supposed that if all notoriously bad people could be removed at a stroke from the world the kingdom of heaven would be at once established on the earth. The idea may be put roughly thus: Bring together all prisoners, all idlers, drunkards, thieves, liars, and every known form of criminal; take them out into the middle of the Atlantic and sink them there, and at once society will be regenerated, and paradise will be regained. Now this is substantially the very course which the Almighty took in the days of Noah, with what results we know only too well. All our fine theories have been tested, and they come to nothing. The tree of manhood has been cut down to the very root, and it has been shown in every possible way that the root itself must be cured if the branches are to become strong and fruitful. If you were today to destroy all the world, with the single exception of one household, and that household the most pious and honourable that ever lived, in less than half a century we should see all the bad characteristics returning. Water cannot drown sin. Fire cannot burn out sin. Prisons cannot cure theft and cruelty. We must go deeper. In the meantime it was well to try some rough experiments, merely for the sake of showing that they were not worth trying. If the flood had not been tried there are some reformers amongst us who would have thought of that as a lucky idea, and wondered that it had never occurred to the Divine mind! After all, it is a very elementary idea. It is the very first idea that would occur to a healthy mind: the world is a failure, man is a criminal and a fool, sin is rampant in the land; very well; that being the case, drown the world. There are persons who seriously ask, Do you think the flood ever did occur? and there are others who find shells on hilltops, and show them in proof of a universal deluge. O fools and slow of heart! This flood is occurring every day; this judgment upon sin never ceases; this protection of a righteous seed is an eternal fact! How long shall we live in the mere letter, and have only a history instead of a revelation — a memorandum book instead of a living Father? That there was a flood exactly as is described in the Bible! have not so much as a shadow of a doubt; but even if I took it as an allegory, or a typical judgment given in parable, I should seize the account as one that is far more profoundly true than any mere fact could ever be. Look at it! God morally angry, righteousness asserted, sin judged, goodness preserved, evil destroyed; it is true, it must be true, every honest heart demands that it be taken as true.

(J. Parker, D. D.)

Ham, Japheth, Noah, Shem
Tigris-Euphrates Region
Behold, Breath, Bring, Bringing, Creature, Deluge, Destroy, Destruction, Die, Expire, Flesh, Flood, Floodwaters, Flow, Heaven, Heavens, Perish, Sky, Spirit, Truly, Waters, Wherein
1. The wickedness of the world, which provoked God's wrath.
8. Noah finds grace.
9. His family line
14. The order, form, dimensions, and building of the ark.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Genesis 6:17

     1310   God, as judge
     4045   chaos
     4804   breath
     6708   predestination
     9210   judgment, God's

Genesis 6:1-22

     7203   ark, Noah's

Genesis 6:9-22

     8131   guidance, results

Genesis 6:11-22

     5106   Noah

Genesis 6:13-22

     1443   revelation, OT

Genesis 6:17-18

     1347   covenant, with Noah
     6160   fathers, sin of

Genesis 6:17-21

     7227   flood, the

An Unheeded Warning
TEXT: "My Spirit shall not always strive with men."--Genesis 6:31. For the truth of this statement one needs only to study his Bible and he will find written in almost every book of Old Testament and New a similar expression. At the same time in the study of God's word it will be revealed to him that God has a great plan which he is carefully working out. We must be familiar with the beginning and the unfolding of this plan and with the conclusion he reached. When after the rebellion of his
J. Wilbur Chapman—And Judas Iscariot

The Saint among Sinners
'These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God. And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted His way upon the earth. And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Marriage of Cana
John 2:11 -- "This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him." I have more than once had occasion to observe, that the chief end St. John had in view, when he wrote his gospel, was to prove the divinity of Jesus Christ, [that Word, who not only was from everlasting with God, but also was really God blessed for evermore] against those arch-heretics Ebion and Cerinthus, whose pernicious principles too many follow in these last
George Whitefield—Selected Sermons of George Whitefield

Covenanting Performed in Former Ages with Approbation from Above.
That the Lord gave special token of his approbation of the exercise of Covenanting, it belongs to this place to show. His approval of the duty was seen when he unfolded the promises of the Everlasting Covenant to his people, while they endeavoured to perform it; and his approval thereof is continually seen in his fulfilment to them of these promises. The special manifestations of his regard, made to them while attending to the service before him, belonged to one or other, or both, of those exhibitions
John Cunningham—The Ordinance of Covenanting

Our Unrighteousness.
"My Spirit shall not always strive with man."--Gen. vi. 3. Before discussing the work of the Holy Spirit in the sinner's restoration, let us consider the interesting but much-neglected question whether man stood in fellowship with the Holy Spirit before the fall. If it is true that the original Adam returns in the regenerated man, it follows that the Holy Spirit must have dwelt in Adam as He now dwells in God's children. But this is not so. God's word teaches the following differences between the
Abraham Kuyper—The Work of the Holy Spirit

Moral Depravity.
In discussing the subject of human depravity, I shall,-- I. Define the term depravity. The word is derived from the Latin de and pravus. Pravus means "crooked." De is intensive. Depravatus literally and primarily means "very crooked," not in the sense of original or constitutional crookedness, but in the sense of having become crooked. The term does not imply original mal-conformation, but lapsed, fallen, departed from right or straight. It always implies deterioration, or fall from a former state
Charles Grandison Finney—Systematic Theology

The Survival of the Fittest.
THE STORY OF THE GREAT FLOOD.--Gen. 6-8. Parallel Readings. Hist. Bible I, 52-65. Darwin, Origin of Species; Wallace, Darwinism; 3. William Dawson, Modern Ideas of Evolution; Article Evolution in leading encyclopedias. When Jehovah saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every purpose in the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually, it was a source of regret that he had made man on the earth and it grieved him to his heart. Therefore Jehovah said, I will
Charles Foster Kent—The Making of a Nation

Difficulties and Objections
"Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not My way equal? are not your ways unequal?" (Ezek. 18:25). A convenient point has been reached when we may now examine, more definitely, some of the difficulties encountered and the objections which might be advanced against what we have written in previous pages. The author deemed it better to reserve these for a separate consideration rather than deal with them as he went along, requiring as that would have done the
Arthur W. Pink—The Sovereignty of God

The Sixth Proposition. All the Objections against the Universality of Christ's Death are Easily Solved
According to which principle (or hypothesis) all the objections against the universality of Christ's death are easily solved; neither is it needful to recur to the ministry of angels, and those other miraculous means, which, they say, God makes use of, to manifest the doctrine and history of Christ's passion, unto such who (living in those places of the world where the outward preaching of the gospel is unknown) have well improved the first and common grace; for hence it well follows, that as some
Robert Barclay—Theses Theologicae and An Apology for the True Christian Divinity

According to which principle or hypothesis all the objections against the universality of Christ's death are easily solved
PROPOSITION VI. According to which principle or hypothesis all the objections against the universality of Christ's death are easily solved; neither is it needful to recur to the ministry of angels, and those other miraculous means which they say God useth to manifest the doctrine and history of Christ's passion unto such, who, living in parts of the world where the outward preaching of the gospel is unknown, have well improved the first and common grace. For as hence it well follows that some of
Robert Barclay—Theses Theologicae and An Apology for the True Christian Divinity

Divine Impartiality Considered.
"For there is no respect of persons with God." The divine impartiality is often asserted in the holy scriptures; and the assertion coincides with our natural ideas of deity. The pagans indeed attributed to their Gods, the vices, follies and weaknesses of men! But the beings whom they adored were mostly taken from among men, and might be considered as retaining human imperfections,--Had unbiased reason been consulted to find out a supreme being, a different object would have been exhibited to view.
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

Noah's Faith, Fear, Obedience, and Salvation
We may take pleasure in thinking of Noah as a kind of contrast to Enoch. Enoch was taken away from the evil to come: he saw not the flood, nor heard the wailing of those who were swept away by the waterfloods. His was a delightful deliverance from the harvest of wrath which followed the universal godlessness of the race. It was not his to fight the battle of righteousness to the bitter end; but by a secret rapture he avoided death, and escaped those evil days in which his grandson's lot was cast.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 36: 1890

Covenanting Enforced by the Grant of Covenant Signs and Seals.
To declare emphatically that the people of God are a covenant people, various signs were in sovereignty vouchsafed. The lights in the firmament of heaven were appointed to be for signs, affording direction to the mariner, the husbandman, and others. Miracles wrought on memorable occasions, were constituted signs or tokens of God's universal government. The gracious grant of covenant signs was made in order to proclaim the truth of the existence of God's covenant with his people, to urge the performance
John Cunningham—The Ordinance of Covenanting

The Writings of Israel's Philosophers
[Sidenote: Discussions the problem of evil] An intense interest in man led certain of Israel's sages in time to devote their attention to more general philosophical problems, such as the moral order of the universe. In the earlier proverbs, prophetic histories, and laws, the doctrine that sin was always punished by suffering or misfortune, and conversely that calamity and misfortune were sure evidence of the guilt of the one affected, had been reiterated until it had become a dogma. In nine out
Charles Foster Kent—The Origin & Permanent Value of the Old Testament

Concerning the Condition of Man in the Fall.
Concerning the Condition of Man in the Fall. [182] All Adam's posterity, or mankind, both Jews and Gentiles, as to the first Adam, or earthly man, is fallen, degenerated, and dead; deprived of the sensation or feeling of this inward testimony or seed of God; and is subject unto the power, nature, and seed of the serpent, which he soweth in men's hearts, while they abide in this natural and corrupted estate; from whence it comes, that not only their words and deeds, but all their imaginations, are
Robert Barclay—Theses Theologicae and An Apology for the True Christian Divinity

Meditations of the Misery of a Man not Reconciled to God in Christ.
O wretched Man! where shall I begin to describe thine endless misery, who art condemned as soon as conceived; and adjudged to eternal death, before thou wast born to a temporal life? A beginning indeed, I find, but no end of thy miseries. For when Adam and Eve, being created after God's own image, and placed in Paradise, that they and their posterity might live in a blessed state of life immortal, having dominion over all earthly creatures, and only restrained from the fruit of one tree, as a sign
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

Departed Saints Fellow Servants with those yet on Earth.
"I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets." That the saints do not remain insensible, while their bodies are in the dull, but become angels, * see and serve God and bear his messages, and minister to the heirs of salvation, hath been argued from several considerations, in the preceding discourse; but we chiefly depend on revelation. The text and several other scriptures, we conceive to be our purpose, and sufficient to establish our theory, and that the same is illustrated and confirmed
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

Mount Zion.
"For ye are not come unto a mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, and unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard entreated that no word more should be spoken unto them: for they could not endure that which was enjoined, If even a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned; and so fearful was the appearance, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake: but ye are come unto Mount Zion, and unto
Thomas Charles Edwards—The Expositor's Bible: The Epistle to the Hebrews

The Growth of the Old Testament Prophetic Histories
[Sidenote: Analogies between the influences that produced the two Testaments] Very similar influences were at work in producing and shaping both the Old and the New Testaments; only in the history of the older Scriptures still other forces can be distinguished. Moreover, the Old Testament contains a much greater variety of literature. It is also significant that, while some of the New Testament books began to be canonized less than a century after they were written, there is clear evidence that
Charles Foster Kent—The Origin & Permanent Value of the Old Testament

They Shall be Called the Children of God
They shall be called the children of God. Matthew 5:9 In these words the glorious privilege of the saints is set down. Those who have made their peace with God and labour to make peace among brethren, this is the great honour conferred upon them, They shall be called the children of God'. They shall be (called)', that is, they shall be so reputed and esteemed of God. God never miscalls anything. He does not call them children which are no children. Thou shalt be called the prophet of the Highest'
Thomas Watson—The Beatitudes: An Exposition of Matthew 5:1-12

What the Scriptures Principally Teach: the Ruin and Recovery of Man. Faith and Love Towards Christ.
2 Tim. i. 13.--"Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus." Here is the sum of religion. Here you have a compend of the doctrine of the Scriptures. All divine truths may be reduced to these two heads,--faith and love; what we ought to believe, and what we ought to do. This is all the Scriptures teach, and this is all we have to learn. What have we to know, but what God hath revealed of himself to us? And what have we to do, but what
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Man's Inability to Keep the Moral Law
Is any man able perfectly to keep the commandments of God? No mere man, since the fall, is able in this life perfectly to keep the commandments of God, but does daily break them, in thought, word, and deed. In many things we offend all.' James 3: 2. Man in his primitive state of innocence, was endowed with ability to keep the whole moral law. He had rectitude of mind, sanctity of will, and perfection of power. He had the copy of God's law written on his heart; no sooner did God command but he obeyed.
Thomas Watson—The Ten Commandments

The Doctrine of Angels.
Rev. William Evans—The Great Doctrines of the Bible

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