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Covenants of God – Lesson 3: The Covenant with Noah

Memory Verse:While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” —Genesis 8:22

Scripture Reading: Genesis 8:15-22


By the time Noah was 500 years old, seven centuries after the death of Adam, the earth was so corrupted by universal wickedness that God told Noah that He would destroy the earth by a flood of water (Genesis 6:5-13, 17).

Full instructions were given to Noah for building the ark, by which he and his family were saved from the flood. Up to that time it had never rained upon the earth, therefore, the unbelieving multitudes did not think a “flood” would come.

When the ark was finished the flood came just as Noah said it would. With the opening of the windows of heaven and the breaking up of the fountains of the deep, the mocking multitudes began to think seriously of what they had heard. They sought safety on higher ground but to no avail. The day of salvation for them had passed, as the rising waters lifted the ark leaving those outside to perish in their attempts to find safety.

Upon leaving the ark a new and strange world faced Noah and his families, for there were no buildings, no cities, no forests and no cultivated fields. They knew that all the destruction came because men were so wicked but what about the future? Would such wickedness recur? Would God again destroy both men and beasts? For their encouragement God promised that He would never again destroy the earth by a flood of water. That they might know that God had not forgotten His promise the rainbow would appear in the clouds, this bow, a token or sign of the promise to Noah, that when man looked upon the rainbow God intended for it to be a reminder of why the earth was destroyed by water and that it wouldn’t happen that way again.

The covenant with Adam, that through obedience and service to God he would retain or regain eternal life, was in no way changed by the covenant with Noah. The earth was cursed by the work of the flood but the command given to Adam to multiply and populate the earth was repeated to Noah’s sons.

In love and mercy God has continued His grace to men, but the day is not far away when His wrath will come on men in greater measure for slighting His grace and mercy. The lessons from the fall of Adam and the flood of Noah have not changed the hearts of men.

Study Questions:

  1. What basic difference was there between Cain and Abel and in the offerings they brought? Genesis 4:3-4; 1 John 3:11-12. What became of Cain? Genesis 4:12-16. Note: Cain’s sacrifice was deficient because Cain did not “do well” (vs. 7), he became angry and jealous instead of repenting.
  2. What was the average lifespan based upon the ages of those named in Genesis 5? What are some reasons for this long lifespan?
  3. Why did God send the flood upon the earth? Genesis 6:5-7, 11-13.
  4. What reasons do you think men used in efforts to refute Noah’s preaching that a “flood” would destroy the earth? Genesis 2:5-6. What caused Noah to continue with the preparation of the ark? Genesis 6:22; Hebrews 11:7.
  5. How long was Noah confined in the ark? Genesis 7:6; Genesis 8:6, 10-14. What offering did Noah make soon after leaving the ark? Genesis 8:18-20.
  6. By what was Noah delivered? Ezekiel 14:14, 20. Was his righteousness able to deliver others? In what way did Peter refer to Noah? 2 Peter 2:1-5, 9.
  7. What covenant was made with Noah? Genesis 8:21-22; Genesis 9:1-12.
  8. What silent message is conveyed in the rainbow? What warning? What four general provisions of that promise to Noah have remained to the present time? Genesis 9:13-17.
  9. What command from God was given to Noah and his sons as recorded in Genesis 9:1, 19 and Genesis 10:32? In what way were Shem’s people blessed greater than those of Ham and Japheth? Genesis 11:10, 26-31; Genesis 21:2-3, 9-12.
  10. What comparison did Christ make regarding the last part of the antediluvian (primitive) age and the final part of the present age? Matthew 24:37-39.