Many years after God had created Adam, Noah
was born. He grew up to be a man who loved God, trusted
Him and tried to do what was right before Him. Sadly,
he was the only one.
Everyone (man or woman, boy or girl) must
choose whether or not to obey God and, sadly, the people
in the world chose to do what they wanted and not what
God wanted them to do. Disobedience spread throughout
the whole world until God was sorry He had made man at
all. The people hurt, robbed and killed each other and
would not listen to Noah who told them of God's ways.
One day God spoke to Noah:
"I am going to put an end to all this
wickedness. I am going to send a great flood upon
the earth that will destroy every living thing. You must
build a large boat and you
must take your wife, your sons and your sons' wives into
it so that you will be safe."
God then told Noah how to build the boat,
or ARK. He gave him exact measurements and told him where
to put the three decks, the window and the door. Noah
had to put tar on the inside and on the outside of the
ark to make it watertight, and it was to be big enough
to take Noah and his family, a male and female of each
kind of animal, and enough food to keep them all alive
in the ark for many months.
It took Noah 100 years to build the ark
and, throughout those years, Noah warned the people of
the flood that was coming. He tried to persuade them to
change their ways and turn to God, but they ignored him.
When all was ready, Noah and his wife, his
sons and their wives, were told by God to go into the
ark. The animals and birds came into the ark and then
God shut the door. Nobody could get in - or out!
For forty days and nights it poured with
rain and waters from beneath the earth burst out onto
the land. People and animals disappeared beneath the floodwaters
and every living thing on the face of the earth was wiped
out. Only Noah was left and those with him in the ark
- 8 people altogether.
But God did not forget them and, after many
months, He caused a wind to blow across the flooded world.
Slowly the waters began to go down until the ark came
to rest on the mountain of Ararat. Gradually the mountaintops
were uncovered, but Noah did not leave the ark. He waited
a while and then sent out a raven, which flew to and fro
over the waters and did not come back. Then Noah sent
out a dove but it soon flew back to the ark. Seven days
later Noah sent the dove out again and this time it brought
back in its beak an olive leaf. Seven days later Noah
released the dove again and this time it did not come
back. The flood was over.
God told Noah and his family to leave the
ark. He had kept them safe and given them all a fresh
start in a clean world. The first thing Noah did was to
offer sacrifices to thank God for their deliverance and
God promised Noah He would never send another flood like
"Never again will I send a flood, or
destroy all living things. For as long as the earth lasts,
I will send you day and night, heat and cold, summer and
winter. I will send a season for
sowing and a season for harvest. I am going to give you
a sign to remind you always of
my promise. Whenever you look up and see a rainbow in
the sky, think of my promise to
you and be sure that I will keep it."
Noah looked up and saw the rainbow. And
today we can still see God's special sign to remind us
of His promise to Noah so long ago.