What to Do When You Finally Park the Ark
Just how long was Noah on the Ark? Some might be tempted to say forty days and forty nights. But that was only how long it rained after Noah and his family entered the ark. Take a moment to the let the Bible help answer this question. First, the Word of God is clear as to when he first entered the Ark. “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened” (Genesis 7:11). Next, we are told in Genesis 8:13-16 when Noah left the Ark. “And it came to pass in the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, that the waters were dried up from the earth; and Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and indeed the surface of the ground was dry. And in the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth was dried. Then God spoke to Noah, saying, “Go out of the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you.” Assuming there were 360 days in the calendar Moses was using to relate the story of Noah and the Ark, Noah was on board for about 370 days, that is, just a little over a year.
We can only imagine what it was like to being cooped up in a box shaped vessel with family and in-laws and animals of every kind for over a year. When it was all over, Noah may have run out of the ark and fell on his knees and kissed the dry ground. To be sure he was ready to go into the fertilizer business after a year on the ark with all those animals.
What did Noah and his family do after being on the ark for a year? First, he led is family in the worship of God. “Then Noah built an altar to the Lord, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. And the Lord smelled a soothing aroma” (Gen. 8:20,21). The first thing you need to consider doing is to take your family to participate in congregational worship.
Notice God commands his family to “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth” (Gen. 9:1). The first post-deluge baby was a boy named Arphaxad, he was the son of Shem. He came along just two years after the flood (Gen. 11:10). You can imagine that nine months after the stay-in-place order by federal, state or local governments there is going to be a baby boom. And in thirteen to sixteen years we are going to have a new generation of young people called the “quaranteens.” Regardless of this, family life needs to go on after all this is over.
The lock down has been implemented to save lives. We value lives even the lives of the elderly and the physically weak who are most vulnerable to Covid-19. After God destroyed the whole world, He reminded Noah and his family how important it was to value human life. “Surely for your lifeblood I will demand a reckoning; from the hand of every beast I will require it, and from the hand of man. From the hand of every man’s brother I will require the life of man. Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed; for in the image of God He made man. And as for you, be fruitful and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth and multiply in it” (Gen.9:5-7).
Out of respect for human life some states have stopped abortions and unnecessary surgeries and medical procedures. Others pushing their political platform have protected the rights of mothers and their doctors in murdering unborn children. Ironically, because of the godly stand of some, more lives may be saved during this quarantine than are lost.
God made a promise and gave a sign for all generations to be reminded after it had rained that God is trustworthy. God promised Noah, “it shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud; and I will remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. The rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth” (Gen. 9:14-16). After Covid-19 has long past, we all need to be thankful to God for His trustworthiness in keeping all His promises.
Not everything Noah did after he left the ark was wise. In fact, one thing he did had a lasting negative effect on his family. Noah made a vineyard and then made wine to get drunk.
There will be many who will run to the bars and will have drinking parties with their buddies after the quarantine is lifted. Christians are different. We are to be sober-minded at all times, even if others think our behavior is strange. “For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles—when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you” (1 Peter 4: 3-4).
While the above are some things you might consider once the social distancing orders are lifted, keep in mind a few other lessons from Noah and the ark while under Covid-19 stay in place. First, like the ark remember we are all in the same boat. And second, no matter the storm, when you are with God, there’s always a rainbow waiting.
Just in case you ever find yourself in need of an ark, I Noah guy. He has his own Arkitectural construction company. They guaranty you an ark to your specifications in about 120 years come rain or shine.
– Daniel R. Vess