From Eternity Past


Chapter 8—After the Flood, a New Beginning

This chapter is based on Genesis 7:20 to 9:7.

The waters rose above the highest mountains. It often seemed to the family within the ark that they must perish, as for five long months their boat was tossed about. It was a trying ordeal, but Noah's faith did not waver. EP 61.1

As the waters began to subside, the Lord caused the ark to drift into a spot protected by a group of mountains preserved by His power. These mountains were but a little distance apart, and the ark moved about in this quiet haven. This gave great relief to the weary, tempest-tossed voyagers. EP 61.2

Noah and his family longed to go forth again upon the earth. Forty days after the tops of the mountains became visible they sent out a raven to discover whether the earth had become dry. This bird, finding nothing but water, continued to fly to and from the ark. Seven days later a dove was sent forth, which finding no footing, returned to the ark. Noah waited seven days longer and again sent forth the dove. When she returned at evening with an olive leaf in her mouth, there was great rejoicing. Still Noah waited patiently for special directions to depart. EP 61.3

At last an angel opened the massive door and bade the patriarch and his household go forth upon the earth and take with them every living thing. Noah did not forget Him by whose gracious care they had been preserved. His first act was to build an altar and offer sacrifice, thus manifesting his gratitude to God for deliverance and his faith in Christ, the great sacrifice. This offering was pleasing to the Lord, and a blessing resulted not only to the patriarch and his family, but to all who should live upon the earth. “The Lord said in His heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake... . While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night, shall not cease.” Noah had come forth upon a desolate earth, but before preparing a house for himself, he built an altar to God. His stock of cattle was small, yet he cheerfully gave a part to the Lord as an acknowledgment that all was His. In like manner His mercy toward us should be acknowledged by devotion and gifts to His cause. EP 61.4