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4. Noah Listens to God (Genesis 6:9-8:22)

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Main Point: God loves people and wants to rescue them.


Key Verse:

The Lord is not slow to keep His promise. He is not slow in the way some people understand it. He is patient with you. He doesn’t want anyone to be destroyed. Instead, He wants all people to turn away from their sins. - 2 Peter 3:9


Ask: Who can tell me what this is? Noah’s Ark Say: It’s interesting that nearly everyone in the world could point to that picture and name it as Noah’s Ark. It’s so familiar and so well known. Nearly every tribe—even in remote areas—has a story about a worldwide flood. Anthropologists have collected between 250 and 300 such flood stories.

Because stories of Noah’s Ark have been passed down in many different versions, it is actually rare to find people who know the TRUTH and the real message of the Ark. If you think you’ve heard this story 100 times, think again! God’s Word is so rich and deep. The more we study the Bible, the more truth we learn from God.


Ask: Who were the first two people that God created? Adam and Eve. Say: Everyone in the world is a descendant of Adam and Eve. Noah came nine generations after Adam and Eve. You could say that Noah was the great, great, great, great, great, great, grandson of Adam and Eve. Let’s learn more about Noah by turning to Genesis 6:9.


This is the account of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God. Noah had three sons: Shem, Ham and Japheth. - Genesis 6:9-10 NIV

Ask: What two words in that verse describe Noah? Righteous & Blameless. Say: Righteous means to be pure in heart in God’s sight. Notice what else was said about Noah: He walked with God. WOW! In just one sentence, look what has been written about Noah! He was righteous, blameless, and a man who walked with God.

Say: What does it mean to walk with God? Think back to the beginning of Genesis when God created Adam and Eve and had sweet fellowship with them in the Garden of Eden. Every day, Adam and Eve walked with God in the cool of the day. Can you just imagine what it would be like to take a walk through a perfect garden with the Creator?

To walk with God doesn’t just mean to walk physically beside God, but rather to be aware of His presence every moment in your life. Walking with God means listening to Him. Noah was obviously listening to God! The Bible says that God promises to bless those who listen to God and walk in His ways (Proverbs 8:32, Psalm 128:1).

It is very important to listen to God! Back in the Garden of Eden, God clearly told Adam and Eve that they could eat the fruit from every tree—except for one: The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God said that if they ate from that one tree, they would surely DIE! (Genesis 2:16-17) Satan, who came to Adam and Eve in the form of a snake, told them that God was lying, and if they ate from that tree, they would be like God (Genesis 3:4). Adam and Eve listened to Satan instead of listening to God. They chose to sin, and everything changed! (Genesis 3:7)

When sin came into the world, things were no longer “good”. Sin always spoils things, and by Noah’s day, nine generations later, the world was in terrible shape!

Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. - Genesis 6:11 NIV

Ask: What two words are used to describe the world? Corrupt & Violent Say: This means that the earth was very sinful in God’s eyes. It was full of mean and harmful acts. People were making many bad choices. Is that how God created our world to be, corrupt and full of violence? No! In Genesis chapter one, the Bible says that everything God created was GOOD. But here we are in Genesis chapter 6, and already God sees the earth as corrupt and full of violence.


God saw how sinful the earth had become. All of the people on earth were leading very sinful lives. - Genesis 6:12

Say: All the people had chosen to sin. They had ruined the good world God had created.

Ask: What are some ways that we can actually ruin our own lives? Listen for answers

How would you describe our world today? How do you think God sees our world? Listen for answers

Say: While God saw the world as corrupt and full of violence, He saw Noah as a righteous and blameless man. Noah listened to God, and because he listened, God told him some BAD NEWS and then some GOOD NEWS:

BAD NEWS: God was going to send punishment to the earth.

So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people. They have filled the earth with their harmful acts. You can be sure that I am going to destroy both them and the earth. - Genesis 6:13

“I am going to bring a flood on the earth. It will destroy all life under the sky. It will destroy every living creature that breathes. Everything on earth will die. Genesis 6:17


GOOD NEWS: God had a rescue plan! God gave Noah EXACT directions.

“So make yourself an ark out of cypress wood. Make rooms in it. Cover it with tar inside and out. Here is how I want you to build it. The ark has to be 450 feet long. It has to be 75 feet wide and 45 feet high. Make a roof for it. Leave the sides of the ark open a foot and a half from the top. Put a door in one side of the ark. Make lower, middle, and upper decks. - Genesis 6:14-16

“But I will make my covenant with you. You will enter the ark. Your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives will enter it with you.

“Bring two of every living thing into the ark. Bring male and female of them into it. They will be kept alive with you. Two of every kind of bird will come to you. Two of every kind of animal will come to you. And two of every kind of creature that moves along the ground will come to you. All of them will be kept alive with you.

“Take every kind of food that you will need. Store it away. It will be food for you and for them.” - Genesis 6:18-21

Say: Notice that God said, two of every kind of bird will come to you. Genesis 7:8-10 tells us that is exactly what happened! A male and a female of each animal came to Noah and entered the ark. The animals obeyed God! Everything happened exactly as God had commanded Noah. God ALWAYS keeps His promises! God sent a male and a female of each animal, so there would be a mommy and a daddy of each kind of animal. One day, they would have baby animals.

Isn’t it interesting that Noah didn’t have to figure out a way to get all those animals on the ark by himself? He didn’t have to search for them or trap them or bring them in on a rope. God had those animals come to Noah! Think about that! When is the last time you saw that many animals willingly come to a person? It is not natural for animals to come, two by two, to a person—much less line up to get on a boat! God did a mighty miracle here!

Say: God gave Noah specific directions to follow while building the ark. God told Noah exactly how big it should be and what type of wood to use. God told Noah to cover it with tar to make it waterproof. God told Noah to bring food for his family and the animals. And God told Noah to make ONE door—and through that ONE door, all who entered would be saved.

The best part is that Noah listened to God! All throughout the Bible, we see that when disaster is about to happen, God always sends a warning. It took Noah 120 years to build this ark, and all the while, he was preaching God’s truth to the people around him. The problem isn’t that God didn’t send a warning; the problem is that the people didn’t listen. Noah’s neighbors had 120 years to trust and believe in God, but they would not listen! Noah DID listen, and he followed the directions that God gave him.


Noah did everything exactly as God commanded him. - Genesis 6:22

Say: After Noah had followed all of God’s instructions, and after the animals, Noah, and his family were safe in the Ark, GOD SHUT THE DOOR. And SEVEN DAYS later, it began to rain. Ask: Do you think it was hard for Noah and his family to stay in that ark for 7 days before the rain even began? Yes, they probably wondered if it would ever rain.

Say: Noah LISTENED to God; Noah TRUSTED God. When God said it was going to rain in 7 days, Noah BELIEVED God! This is what it means to have FAITH—to believe and trust what God says. (Romans 10:17 says that faith comes by hearing, or listening.)

And think of this: it had never rained before! It may have seemed strange to Noah that God would tell him that big drops of water were going to fall from the sky. We see rain all the time, but Noah had NEVER seen rain before, and he was 600 years old! But whether Noah had seen rain or not, Noah chose to LISTEN TO GOD and to BELIEVE GOD!

Application: It is very important for us to listen to God as well! God may tell you to do something or to go somewhere. He may tell you to be kind to an unfriendly child at school. He may tell your parents that your family should move to a new city. It’s very important that you listen to God and trust Him. Obeying God is the key to God’s blessing in your life. Luke 11:28 says, “Blessed are those who hear God’s word and obey it.”

Ask: What if Noah had not listened to God? Noah and his family would have been destroyed in the flood. There would have been no more people! Say: There would not have been “another chance” for mankind. Because Noah listened and obeyed, the human race could continue.

Then the rain began to fall.

Rain fell on the earth for 40 days and 40 nights. - Genesis 7:12

For 40 days the flood kept coming on the earth. As the waters rose higher, they lifted the ark high above the earth. The waters rose higher and higher on the earth. And the ark floated on the water.

The waters rose on the earth until all of the high mountains under the entire sky were covered. The waters continued to rise until they covered the mountains by more than 20 feet.

Every living thing that moved on the earth died. The birds, the livestock and the wild animals died. All of the creatures that filled the earth also died. And so did every human being. Everything on dry land that had the breath of life in it died. Every living thing on the earth was wiped out. People and animals were destroyed. The creatures that move along the ground and the birds of the air were wiped out.

Everything was destroyed from the earth. Only Noah and those who were with him in the ark were left.

The waters flooded the earth for 150 days. - Genesis 7:17-24

Say: The waters flooded the earth for 150 days (Genesis 7:24) then went down over a few months. Five months after the flood began, the ark landed on the mountains of Ararat (Genesis 8:4). It took a long time for the waters to recede and for the ground to be dry enough to walk on. It was a little more than a year that Noah and his family spent on the ark. And when it was safe and God told them to leave, they got off the ark.

The earth and all its filth had been washed away by the big flood, and Noah and his family came out of the ark into a clean, brand new world with new life all around them!

Then God said to Noah, “Come out of the ark. Bring your wife and your sons and their wives with you.

“Bring out every kind of living thing that is with you. Bring the birds, the animals, and all of the creatures that move along the ground. Then they can multiply on the earth. They can have little ones and increase their numbers.”

So Noah came out of the ark. His sons and his wife and his sons’ wives were with him. All of the animals came out of the ark. The creatures that move along the ground also came out. So did all of the birds. Everything that moves on the earth came out of the ark. One kind after another came out.

Then Noah built an altar to honor the Lord. He took some of all of the “clean” animals and birds. He sacrificed burnt offerings to the Lord on the altar.

Their smell was pleasant to the Lord. He said to Himself, “I will never put a curse on the ground again because of man. I will not do it even though his heart is always directed toward what is evil. His thoughts are evil from the time he is young. I will never destroy all living things again, as I have just done. - Genesis 8:15-21

Say: God made a promise that He would never again destroy the earth with water. He set a rainbow in the clouds as a sign of His promise (Genesis 9:12-17). God told Noah and his sons to go out and have many children to fill the earth with people (Genesis 9:1).

Jesus: Our Rescue Plan

In the story of Noah, we see two very evident characteristics of God. God is just and God is merciful. These two characteristics may seem like opposites, but they are really not at all. They are much like two sides of the same coin.

First, God is just. Another word for just is fair. Like a good judge, He must punish sin. It would not be fair for a judge to allow someone to break the law and not punish him. In the same way, God must punish sin. But this does not make God happy. Genesis 6:6 tells us that God’s heart was filled with pain.

Secondly, God is merciful. This means He is compassionate and kind, not wanting to punish. God loves His people very much. Therefore, He had a rescue plan for Noah and his family. And, God allowed Noah to warn those around him for 120 years.

God never changes! He is still perfectly just and merciful today. He must still punish sin, but He has provided a rescue plan for all who will listen. The Bible says that each of us has sinned and will be punished for our sin (Romans 3: 23, 2:23). But, in His mercy, God sent His one and only Son, Jesus, to become our substitute. When Jesus died on the cross, He met God’s punishment requirement. All who place their trust in Jesus will be saved from eternal punishment, and given eternal life in God’s kingdom (John 3:16). Just as there was only one door to enter the ark and be saved from destruction, trusting Jesus is the only way to enter God’s kingdom and be saved from eternal punishment.

Say: God loves people. He wanted Noah’s generation to listen to His Word and be rescued! There came a time, however, when it was too late. We can only imagine that when the rain started falling that the people suddenly wanted to listen, but at that point, it was too late.

Just as God gave the people in Noah’s day a lot of time to trust in Him, He has given you many opportunities to trust and believe. It is important to listen to God NOW - TODAY!


Main Point: God loves people and wants to rescue them.

Teacher Note: We can see similarities in God’s rescue plan for Noah, and His rescue plan for us.

The door: There was only one door on the ark. Anyone who trusted in the ark that God provided would enter through that door and be saved from the flood.

Jesus said, “I am the Door. Anyone who goes in through Me will be saved from the punishment of sin.” - John 10:9a

New Life: When the waters receeded and Noah’s family came out of the ark, the sinful world they had left was washed away. They entered into a brand new world with new life budding all around them.

When Jesus died, was buried, and then rose from the dead, He took away the power of sin and death. Anyone who trusts in Him has a completely NEW LIFE! God has made a way for us to have a clean, brand new life in Him.

Anyone who believes in Christ is a new creation. The old is gone! The new has come! - 2 Corinthians 5:17

The Light: God placed a rainbow in the sky as a sign of His promise that He would never flood the earth again. A rainbow is made from seven colors of light.

Jesus said, I am the LIGHT of the world (John 8:12). Even in the rainbow, we can remember that God keeps His promises and that Jesus is the LIGHT! Those 7 colors of light are ALWAYS in the same order: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, and Violet. God is orderly and deliberate in everything He does! We can always trust Him and depend on Him.

© 2007 All rights reserved worldwide. May be reproduced for personal, nonprofit, and non-commercial uses only.

Unless otherwise noted the Scriptures taken from: Holy Bible, New International Reader’s Version, (NIrV®)

Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998 by International Bible Society / Used by permission of IBS-STL.  All rights reserved worldwide.

Special thanks to John R. Cross, The Stranger on the Road to Emmaus, GoodSeed International.

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