Assuaging of the Waters.
1. And God remembered Noah—The divine
purpose in this awful dispensation had been accomplished, and the world
had undergone those changes necessary to fit it for becoming the
residence of man under a new economy of Providence.
and every living thing … in the
ark—a beautiful illustration of Mt 10:29.
and God made a wind to pass over the
earth—Though the divine will could have dried up the liquid
mass in an instant, the agency of a wind was employed (Ps 104:4)—probably a hot wind, which, by
rapid evaporation, would again absorb one portion of the waters into
the atmosphere; and by which, the other would be gradually drained off
by outlets beneath.
4. seventh month—of the year—not
of the flood—which lasted only five months.
rested—evidently indicating a calm and
upon the mountains of Ararat—or
Armenia, as the word is rendered (2Ki 19:37; Isa 37:38). The mountain which tradition
points to as the one on which the ark rested is now called Ara Dagh,
the "finger mountain." Its summit consists of two peaks, the higher of
which is 17,750 feet and the other 13,420 above the level of the
5. And the waters decreased
continually—The decrease of the waters was for wise reasons
exceedingly slow and gradual—the period of their return being
nearly twice as long as that of their rise.
6. at the end of forty days—It is easy
to imagine the ardent longing Noah and his family must have felt to
enjoy again the sight of land as well as breathe the fresh air; and it
was perfectly consistent with faith and patience to make inquiries
whether the earth was yet ready.
7. And he sent forth a raven—The smell
of carrion would allure it to remain if the earth were in a habitable
state. But it kept hovering about the spot, and, being a solitary bird,
probably perched on the covering.
8-11. Also he sent forth a dove—a bird
flying low and naturally disposed to return to the place of her
10. again he sent forth the dove—Her
flight, judging by the time she was abroad, was pursued to a great
distance, and the newly plucked olive leaf, she no doubt by
supernatural impulse brought in her bill, afforded a welcome proof that
the declivities of the hills were clear.
12. he … sent forth the dove: which returned
not … any more—In these results, we perceive a wisdom
and prudence far superior to the inspiration of instinct—we
discern the agency of God guiding all the movements of this bird for
the instruction of Noah, and reviving the hopes of his household.
other seven days—a strong presumptive
proof that Noah observed the Sabbath during his residence in the
13, 14. Noah removed the covering of the
ark—probably only as much of it as would afford him a
prospect of the earth around. Yet for about two months he never stirred
from his appointed abode till he had received the express permission of
God. We should watch the leading of Providence to direct us in every
step of the journey of life.
Ge 8:15-22. Departure from
15, 16. And God spake … Go
forth—They went forth in the most orderly manner—the
human occupants first, then each species "after their kinds" [Ge 8:19], literally, "according to their
families," implying that there had been an increase in the ark.
20. Noah builded an altar—literally, "a
high place"—probably a mound of earth, on which a sacrifice was
offered. There is something exceedingly beautiful and interesting to
know that the first care of this devout patriarch was to return thanks
for the signal instance of mercy and goodness which he and his family
took of every clean beast …
fowl—For so unparalleled a deliverance, a special
acknowledgment was due.
21. And the Lord smelled a sweet
savour—The sacrifice offered by a righteous man like Noah in
faith was acceptable as the most fragrant incense.
Lord said in his heart—same as "I have
sworn that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth" (Isa 54:9).
for—that is, "though the imagination
is evil"; instead of inflicting another destructive flood, I shall
spare them—to enjoy the blessings of grace, through a
22. While the earth remaineth—The
consummation, as intimated in 2Pe 3:7, does not frustrate a promise which held
good only during the continuance of that system. There will be no flood
between this and that day, when the earth therein shall be burnt up