why did God bring the flood in Noah's time

Why Did God Bring The Flood In Noah’s Time?

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Welcome back to our study of the book of Genesis. Today we’ll talk about the events that led up to the flood in Noah’s time. In chapter 4, we talked about how there was no fear of God in the line of Cain. It set the stage for what we’ll discuss in chapter 6.  

Genesis 6: Before the Flood

1When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose.

Who were the sons of God?

We can’t tell with absolute confidence what the identity of the sons of God is and we can only present the possible options we have. I have already discussed this in another article and I will point you to that , see link below

Who Are The Sons Of GOD Mentioned In Verse 2 Of Genesis 6 ?

John Maccarthur has the best exposition of this particular passage, see video below

God’s patience will eventually come to an end

One thing is certain in this verse, the increase of evil had  reached an all time high that God made a pronouncement. If I were to put it in the vernacular, God essentially would be saying that HE didn’t have to put up with this nonsense because after all, man was human, meaning mortal. This shows us again  the great dichotomy between God and humans, we are mortal and HE isn’t. God is eternal and cannot die so He didn’t have to put up with man’s wickedness. Consequently He set an asymptote or shall I say a limit for man to repent-120 years.

Oftentimes we fail to recognize that while God is patient, HE will eventually put an end to evil. In our arrogance, some of us actually have the audacity to question His goodness when His  judgement finally comes. We talk as if HE hadn’t given us enough time to repent. For Noah’s contemporaries, it was 120 years. There is also one thing we need to learn in this verse- the restraint the Spirit of God put on mankind. David knew that He was worthless without the Spirit of God hence  prayed that God would not take His Spirit away from him. The reason why evil is restrained is the presence of the Spirit of God still dwells with mankind. The minute God takes His Spirit away we can be sure that all hell will break lose and will usher in the sudden appearance of His judgement.

The Nephilim[b] were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.

What did the Nephilim represent?

Some people believe that Goliath was a Nephilim, I think the focus shouldn’t be on the identity of these strange people but rather what they represented. From the text, they appeared to be the offspring of the   union between the daughters of man and the sons of God mentioned earlier. One thing is certain about them,  they were not Godly. On the other hand they embodied the spirit of Lamech of the line of Cain- pride, heroes according to man’s perspective. They had been endowed with power and influence and nothing is saying about them calling upon the name of the Lord. So they represented everything God hated, namely pride.

The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually

God Is all Seeing

There are two things we can take away from this verse. The stage had already been set, the descendants of Cain had plunged  humanity into more darkness. And their wickedness was evident as the text indicated- GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great. In God’s assessment, the evil of mankind had become great and was exercised externally for everyone to see. But the verse doesn’t stop with the external, it also reveals something deeper. Not only was the evil blatant, but the motive ( intention of the heart) was also evil, and evil continually. As humans, unless we are given supernatural insights, we can’t read the thoughts of another person. In this text, we’re told that GOD who is all seeing, evaluated mankind’s inner thoughts and motives, and they were just as bad as their outer actions, and that, always. Jesus said it isn’t what goes into a man that defiles a man but what comes out of man that defiles him. The wickedness that was talking place had its roots in an evil heart. And God was going to do something about it.

And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.”

God Is Not A Man That He Shall Repent

In verses 5-7, God is shown as a man ( human). It is crucial for us to comprehend and interpret this chapter accurately lest we make serious mistakes. When the Bible says that GOD was grieved or regretted that HE had made mankind, it seems as if God had no clue that all things that happened were going to happen. If that was the case then HE wouldn’t be God since by nature GOD is eternal.

So why does the Bible employ terminology like that? It is so that we as humans may comprehend the extent of the wickedness on the earth in Noah’s time. We are clearly told that God is not a man that He should be grieved, 1 Samuel 5:29. Therefore, the Scripture is using language  that is common to humanity to convey the seriousness of the evil at hand. By speaking of God as if HE was like us, the Scripture shows us how GOD would have reacted if HE was a human. God eventually took on the form of a man, Jesus Christ, and  was grieved on several occasions as recorded in the Gospels.

We also need to mention the effects of sin. the effects of sin. Sin doesn’t just affect the sinner but the consequences are far reaching. Because of man’s wickedness , the whole earth was polluted and God in His infinite wisdom decided to wipe out every thing that has the breath of life in it. Man’s wickedness brought about consequences for the animal world and the rest of the creatures. We know from chapter 2 that the ground was cursed as a result of Adam and EVE’s disobedience sin, and now the rest of the creatures were going to be also destroyed because man’s sin Had contaminated the entire creation.

 verse 8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.

There Is Always A Remnant

God always has a remnant. It is important that we correctly interpret this verse. We are told that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. Let’s remember that Noah was of the line of Seth , and also a descendant of Enoch ( of whom it was said that He walked with GOD). He is also the son of Lamech and remember what was said about Noah when He was born — that He would bring relief to man’s hard labor as a result of the curse. I told you earlier that this was a prophetic word inspired by the Holy Spirit. Lamech couldn’t have come up with this on his own. Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord because God chose him, it wasn’t the other way around. Noah was chosen by God because of God’s own prerogative; he became the recipient of God’s grace not on the basis of his own works but because of God’s own sovereign choice.

These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.

How Was Noah Set Apart From His Contemporaries

We are given a thorough overview of Noah. In the previous verses we were told about the meaning of His name and we were also told that He found favor in the eyes of the Lord. In verse 9, we learn about his character. He was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time and he walked with God( like his great grand father Enoch). The Bible clearly tells us that there is none righteous, not even one. How should we understand the word righteous in this verse. Basically Noah walked contrary to the way the people of his time walked. The scripture doesn’t tell us that he was sinless before God but rather blameless among the people of his time, in that he was not a partaker of their devious deeds. And we are told why he didn’t participate in the evil deeds of his generation- because he walked with God. The only other person that was referred to as walking with God was Enoch. And Noah was one of his descendants, so he also walked with God not according to the ways of his contemporaries. In that way, he was righteous , blameless among the people of his time. Can that be said of you and I?

10 And Noah had three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

The Three Sons Of Noah

We know that Noah didn’t father his sons until he was 500 years old. I wondered why he waited this long? We can only speculate on this. Maybe he didn’t want to bring up children in such a corrupted world for fear that they would follows the ungodliness around them. Maybe he though the world was going to end with his generation, we don’t know the reason but we know that he didn’t have any sons until he turned 500. These three sons are going play a significant role in later chapters.

11 Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence. 12 And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth.

Corruption & Violence Usher In God’s Judgement

Verse 11  begins with saying that the earth was corrupt in God’s sight. I want to bring attention to this verse because God is the final authority when it comes to deciding what is evil or right. The earth may have appeared to be just as it should be based on mankind’s criteria, but in God’s eyes, it was polluted. In the book of Matthew, chapter 24:37-38, we are told the following:

37 For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark

The earth was corrupted because people were corrupted. The two main reasons why God was preparing to usher in judgement were the violence of mankind and their total corruption. This is consistent with what the book of Romans teaches in chapter 8:19-21,

For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God

This should be a wake up call for us, God takes the littlest sin very seriously. At the very root of this corruption is Adam and Eve’s failure to obey the Word of God concerning the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil.

13 And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh,[c] for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth

God’s Verdict Is Out

The word flesh can be substituted by “living beings” or “mortal creatures.” Between verses 11 and 13 the word corrupt(ed) appears about three times. And the word violence appears twice. Whenever words are repeated in a succession in this manner, they are meant to be emphatic. This is to show how really corrupted and violent the world had become. And the violence was a by -product of the ongoing corruption. We already saw in the earlier verses that God gave mankind about 120 years to repent. His judgement was eventually going to come but not before HE gave people the opportunity to turn their lives around.

These verses also teach us that sin has far-reaching repercussions, as was already established. Because of human corruption, which tainted the entire world, GOD decided to exterminate all living things.

14 Make yourself an ark of gopher wood.[d] Make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch. 15 This is how you are to make it: the length of the ark 300 cubits,[e] its breadth 50 cubits, and its height 30 cubits. 16 Make a roof[f] for the ark, and finish it to a cubit above, and set the door of the ark in its side. Make it with lower, second, and third decks. 17 For behold, I will bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Everything that is on the earth shall die.

The Ark That Saves

The ark was not a navigation device but a floatation device, built to withstand the power of the floodwaters, to withstand the judgement of God. God designed the blueprint of the Ark so it could withstand His Wrath. I hope you can see a picture of the Gospel through this Ark, I couldn’t help but talk about it. Listen to what Hebrews 11:7 says

By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.

Jesus is our righteousness, HE is the one who protects us from the wrath of God the same way the Ark protected Noah from the flood. I wrote an entire post on the necessity of the God-Man, see link below

Why The God-Man?

18 But I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall come into the ark, you, your sons, your wife, and your sons’ wives with you. 19 And of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every sort into the ark to keep them alive with you. They shall be male and female. 20 Of the birds according to their kinds, and of the animals according to their kinds, of every creeping thing of the ground, according to its kind, two of every sort shall come in to you to keep them alive.

Out of the many people that existed in the time of Noah, God only made a covenant with him. Because of Noah’s walk with the LORD, his immediate family members were also going to be the beneficiary of the covenant God was setting before him. The benefits of this covenant included salvation from the wrath of God for Noah and his family by way of the ark. Entering that ark meant their lives would be spared from the flood ( the judgement of God).

In the previous  verses, we saw that animals, birds and other living creatures were going to be  destroyed as a result of the violence and the corruption that had taken over the earth, and we concluded that evil hurts more than just the perpetrators but has far -reaching consequences. But we see in verses 19 and 20 that two of every living creature that walked the earth and every bird of the sky were going to be spared because Noah found favor with God.

There is another significant point that should be made here. There is a proper order even in the animal kingdom. Animals must be categorized not only according to their species but also in light of the fact that, even in the animal kingdom, procreation may only occur when a male and a female partners are present.

21 Also take with you every sort of food that is eaten, and store it up. It shall serve as food for you and for them.” 22 Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him.

I like how verse 22 reads in the ESV version. The ESV translation of verse 22 reads well to me. It is worded in a way that the reader cannot fail to understand what is being emphasized. The text first tells us that Noah did this before going on to describe what he did. Why is the sentence written in that particular way? It demonstrates how crucial obedience is above everything else. Disobedience to the word of God led mankind to the current predicament.

Noah is similar to a type of Christ. According to the scripture, he performed EVERYTHING God told him to do, showing complete commitment to the LORD’s Word.

What can we learn from chapter 6?

The people of Noah’s day and those of the present share no differences-our days are rife with violence, sexual perversion, and corruption.The only reason we haven’t already been consumed by God’s wrath is because, just as He gave Noah’s contemporaries 120 years to repent, God is giving us time to do the same. But just as people in Noah’s time laughed at the thought of a flood, so do people now laugh at the reality of Jesus’ second coming and the subsequent judgment.

As born again believers. our main duty is to fear God, shun evil and live out the gospel before our families and our circles of influence.  People undoubtedly regarded Noah as insane for taking nearly a little over a century to construct an ark. He was most likely the target of numerous jokes. He continued to build the ark out of faith, serving as a witness of God before a perishing world. Listen to what Hebrews 11:7 says,

By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.

He built the ark in reverent fear while everyone else disregarded God’s warnings.

PS: I started Tayibs.com for the sole purpose of exploring difficult questions about the Christian faith that most of us shy away from. All the content generated on this website is thoroughly analyzed prior to being shared. And the site is run solely by myself, your generous support is very much appreciated