One Righteous Man
The population of the earth grew rapidly. There were a couple of key factors that allowed for this. First, the gene pool had not yet been weakened by disease or mutation,
therefore marriages between close relatives were possible and permitted. It wasn’t until the time of Moses that God placed boundaries prohibiting family marriage relationships (see Leviticus 18 and 20). Second, prior to the flood, people lived hundreds of years due to fewer diseases and slower deterioration. Adam lived to be 930 years old before he died (Genesis 5:5). This means he was still alive after the birth of Lamech, the father of Noah. Life spans often lasted up to ten generations, allowing couples to raise many more children. And third, populations always grow at an exponential rate—meaning they multiply rather than simply add up—causing dramatic increases with each generation.
Sadly, as the population grew, so did the results of sin. Disease, death, and destruction became rampant. The men who had previously chosen to follow God and be “called by His name” (Genesis 6:2) began to lust for the most beautiful girls, even if they and their families did not love God. They basically tried to create their own super-race. There was so much evil that God decided it was best to cleanse the whole earth with a flood.
Fortunately, a man named Noah did not abandon God. God decided to save him and his family. They were to be God’s representatives in a clean, fresh world. In addition, male and female pairs of every living creature were to be preserved in a large floating barge (an ark) that Noah would build according to God’s instructions.
When the ark was finally completed, God said it was time for Noah and his family to enter it. God brought the pairs of animals to them, and when they were all inside, He closed the door. At that moment, it was too late for anyone else to repent and be saved.
Seven days later the flood began. The springs that had previously watered the earth (see Genesis 2:5-6) gushed open, and the waters that encircled the earth above the sky (see Genesis 1:6-8) burst through their boundaries. It rained for the first time ever, and it continued for 40 days and 40 nights. For another 150 days the floodwaters ravaged the earth. Finally the ark came to rest on the top of Mount Ararat.
Still it was almost another two months until the land was dry enough for an exploratory dove to find a place to make its home. Then God told Noah it was time for his family and all the animals to leave the ark and begin to live on the dry ground. The first thing Noah did was build an altar. There he sacrificed some of the animals that had weathered the storm with him. He praised and thanked God for providing a way of escape for him and his family. God was pleased and made a covenant with Noah that He would never again destroy the earth with a flood. He demonstrated His promise with a rainbow.
If God searches today for someone who loves and obeys Him, will He choose you?
Are you willing to do whatever He asks you to do even if your peers think it is crazy?
Even if it doesn’t fit with your goals for your life?
Even if it might make you lonely?