LESSON 07 – God’s Promise to Noah – Genesis 9:1-17

  1. Discussion {Refer to pages 59-72 of Genesis: Finding Our Roots}
    • Read 9:1-17. This passage is called the Noahic Covenant. It recounts the promises from God to Noah and gives new instructions about how the people were supposed to live. What is the first command God gives Noah in 9:1? (Have children and fill the earth.) Who else received that command? (Adam and Eve – Gen. 1:28)
    • What changes will now occur between man and animals? (animals will fear man; not just plants are for eating now – it is admissible to eat the meat of animals) What are the new instructions about lifeblood and murder? (people are not to meat that still has blood in it; if a man or an animal kills a person, they are to be killed or executed) God institutes capital punishment in this passage. What reason does God give for this severe of a penalty? (vs. 6 – People are made in the image of God.) Can you think of a reason that our society has backed away from capital punishment? (possible answer:  our culture no longer believes that man is made in God’s image, our worldview is that man evolved – this devalues human life and so murder is not seen as such an evil thing – man is just an animal doing what animals do)
    • What promise does God make to Noah, mankind and all life on earth? (He would never again destroy the earth with a flood. NOTE:  If the flood had not been universal, then God is a liar.  There have been many, many floods since Noah got off of the ark. The only way His promise of not destroying the world with a flood makes sense is that the flood covered the entire earth and was not just a local flood.) What sign did God give for this promise? (the rainbow) [FYI – For those of you who might want to know if this means that it never rained until after the flood, check out Dr. Walt Brown’s website: http://www.creationscience.com/onlinebook/FAQ215.html for a scientific perspective.]
  2. Application– For 9:1-17 – God reminds Noah and his family that they are to populate the earth. He institutes capital punishment which shows Noah how important the sanctity of human life is to Him.  Why might the Noah and his family have a better understanding of why life is so important? (Possible answers: they knew they were only living people on earth so it was very important to institute laws that would preserve life. Man’s sinful nature had not been taken away, so laws needed to be made that would check men from murdering one another.) Why do you think God made a sign for His promise not to destroy the world again with a flood? The rainbow reminds of two things. First, that God always keeps His promises.  He will never change and what He promises He is able to perform. Secondly, it is a reminder of the reason for the rainbow: that God’s patient waiting for man to repent in Noah’s day eventually ran out and His judgment came.  Read Mt. 24:37-39.  What comparison is made in this passage? (Possible answer: When Christ comes back to judge the world, it will be just like it was before the flood came. People will be going about their business, not paying any attention to the warnings that they need to repent.) II Peter 3:4-7 also draws a comparison to the people in Noah’s day to the people that will not believe that God is going to judge the world again – finally and once for all.  Thank God first that He keeps His promises. What promise from God do you know that brings you comfort, just like the promise to Noah brought comfort to him and his family? Who do we as a family need to be praying for that we know does not believe in God or in His promises about the future? Spend time thanking God for His promises and that He is faithful and dependable.
  3. Digging Deeper
    1. Research recent “sightings” of the ark.  Do you believe that the ark is still on earth, or has it crumbled to dust? Write an opinion paragraph explaining your view. You must cite specific documented evidence for you opinion. Here are a couple of websites to check out: http://answersingenesis.org/creation/v14/i4/report.asphttp://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/04/0427_040427_noahsark.htmlhttp://www.noahsarksearch.com/arknotfound.htm, http://arcimaging.org/ArcImagingWeb_files/frame.htm

Many people say that if Christians don’t believe in abortion, then they also shouldn’t believe in capital punishment. They are both killing human life and to condemn one and condone the other is contradictory. Do you believe that this true? Why or why not? Write out your opinion and be sure to back it all of your ideas with scripture references.