Think your life is a zoo? Spend a few minutes considering Noah's long faithfulness.
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Read the chapter in an outlined format:
Genesis 8 (ESV)
1 But God remembered
all the beasts
and all the livestock
that were with him in the ark.
made a wind blow over the earth,
and the waters subsided.
fountains of the deep
and the windows of the heavens were closed,
the rain from the heavens was restrained,
3 and the waters receded from the earth continually.
At the end of 150 days the waters had abated,
4 and in the seventh month,
on the seventeenth day of the month,
the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.
5 And the waters continued to abate until the tenth month;
in the tenth month, on the first day of the month,
the tops of the mountains were seen.
6 At the end of forty days
Noah opened the window of the ark that he had made
7 and sent forth a raven.
It went to and fro
until the waters were dried up from the earth.
8 Then he sent forth a dove from him,
to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground.
9 But the dove
found no place to set her foot,
and she returned to him to the ark,
for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth.
So he put out his hand and took her and brought her into the ark with him.
10 He waited another seven days,
and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark.
11 And the dove
came back to him in the evening,
and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf.
So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth.
12 Then he waited another seven days
and sent forth the dove, and she did not return to him anymore.
13 In the six hundred and first year,
in the first month,
the first day of the month,
the waters were dried from off the earth.
removed the covering of the ark and looked,
and behold, the face of the ground was dry.
14 In the second month,
on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth had dried out.
15 Then God said to Noah,
16 “Go out from the ark,
you and your wife,
and your sons and your sons’ wives with you.
17 Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh—
birds and animals
and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth—
that they may swarm on the earth,
and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.”
18 So Noah went out,
and his sons and his wife
and his sons’ wives with him.
19 Every beast, every creeping thing, and every bird,
everything that moves on the earth,
went out by families from the ark.
20 Then Noah
built an altar to the Lord
some of every clean animal
and some of every clean bird
and offered burnt offerings on the altar.
21 And when the Lord
smelled the pleasing aroma,
the Lord said in his heart,
“I will never again
curse the ground because of man,
for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth.
Neither will I ever again
strike down every living creature as I have done.
22 While the earth remains,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night,
shall not cease.”
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Genesis 8 Summary
v1-3 - The chapter opens with a simple, but beautifully worded reminder of God's faithfulness: "But God remembered..." The rain comes to a stop and the water begins to recede.
v4-14 - When we think of the flood, we remember it rained for 40 days and nights, but even after the rain stopped, the floods persisted for almost half a year.
Noah dispatches birds to scout for dry land.
Finally, after almost a year cooped up caring for thousands of animals on a boat, the dove found dry ground.
v15-19 - The earth is re-populated with animals and people.
v20-22 - The Lord promises to preserve the Earth and its seasons.
Two big themes are present in this chapter:
God's faithfulness - The chapter begins with "But God remembered," and ends with His promise to continue sustaining the earth despite the evil inclinations of man's heart.
Noah's perseverance - We can read this entire chapter in less than three minutes, plus we already knew how it would end before we began. Now put yourself in Noah's position: day after day of chores and logistic problems to solve to keep all the animals fed, bedded and content; week after week of wondering if the giant wooden boat would hold together; month after month of simmering tensions and interpersonal conflicts between families. That's a massive load of stress! But yet, Noah waited patiently, even as it took months for God's faithfulness to become clear to Noah. Know that even though you can absolutely count on God's faithfulness, life often involves long periods of waiting.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father, who remembers His children;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray for patience as you wait for God's promises to be fulfilled in your life.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: