Obrázky na stránke

ance were so wonderful, that very lasting im-
pressions must have been left upon their minds,
after they had survived the fearful event. The
sacred writer has moreover given us the reasons,
why it pleased God to bring this flood upon the
world, to the destruction of the work of his hands.
'The earth was corrupt before God; and the earth
was filled with violence. And God looked upon the
earth, and behold, it was corrupt: for all flesh had
corrupted his way upon the earth. And God said
unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me;
for the earth is filled with violence through them :
and behold, I will destroy them with the earth.
Make thee an ark of Gopher wood.--- And this is
the fashion, which thou shalt make it of: The
length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the
breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty
cubits. A window shalt thou make to the ark, and
in a cubit shalt thou finish it above : and the door
of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof.Thus
did Noah : according to all, that God commanded
him, so did he.-— And Noah went in, and his sons,
and his wife, and his sons wives with him, into the
ark, because of the waters of the flood. - In the sir

[ocr errors]

Genes. c. 6. v. 11. &c.
2 Ibid. c. 7. v.7.
3 Ibid. c.7. v. 11. &c.

hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights. In the self same day entered Noüh, fc. And they went in unto Noah into the ask two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life. And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the Lord shut him in. And the flood was forty days upon the earth: and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth.4 And all flesh died, that moved upon the earth-All, in whose nostrils was the breath of lifeAnd every living substance was destroyed. And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.

We find from the above, that the Patriarch and his family were inclosed in an ark, or covered float; wherein there was only one window of a cubit in dimensions. This was of small proportion in respect to the bulk of the machine, which was above five hundred feet in length. It was moreover closed up, and fastened: so that the persons within were consigned to darkness; having no light, but what must have been administered to

* Genes. c. 7. v. 21, &c.

them from lamps and torches. They therefort could not have been eye-witnesses to the general calamity of mankind. They did not see the mighty eruption of waters, nor the turbulence of the seas: when the fountains of the great deep were broken up. Yet the crash of mountains, and the noise of the cataracts could not but have sounded in their ears : and possibly the cries of people may have reached them; when families and nations were overwhelming in the floods. The motion too of the ark must have been very violent at this tempestuous season: all which added to the gloom, and uncertainty, in which they were involved, could not but give them many fearful sensations ; however they may have relied on Providence, and been upheld by the hand of heaven. We find that the machine, in which they were secured, is termed Thebah, an ark, or chest. It was of such a model and construction as plainly indicated, that it was never designed to be managed, or directed by the hands of men. And it seems to have been the purpose of Providence throughout to signify to those, who were saved, as well as to their latest posterity, that their:preservation was not in any degree effected by human means.

After this the sacred historian proceeds to inform us, that God remembered Noah, and every living

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

s Genes. c. 3. v. 1, &c.


thing,--that was with him in the ark : that the fountains of the deep, and the windows of heaven were stopped, and the rain from heaven was restrained. And the ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat. And the waters decreased continually until the tenth month: in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, weré the tops of the mountains seen. And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark, which he had made : And he sent forth a raven ; which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth. Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground: But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark.--And he stayed yet .other seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark : And the dove came in to him in the evening ; and lo, in her mouth was ån olive-leaf pluckt off : 80 Noah knew that the waters were abated from off the earth. And he stayed yet other seven days; and sent forth th dove : which returned not again unto him any more.--And in the second month, on the seden and twentieth day of the month, was the earth dried.

Genes. c. 8. V. 4, &c.

And God spahe unto Noah, saying, Go forth of the ark. And Noah went forth, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons wives with him. And Noah builded an altar unto the Lord; and took of every clcan beast and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt-offerings on the altar.

These are the principal circumstances in this wonderful occurrence; which I have produced in the words of the divine historian, that I might not do injury to his narration : and they are of such a nature, as, one might well imagine, would be long had in remembrance. We may reasonably suppose, that the particulars of this extraordinary event would be gratefully commemorated by the Patriarch himself; and transmitted to every branch of his family: that they were made the subject of domestic converse; where the history was often renewed, and ever attended with a reverential awe and horror: especially in those, who had been witnesses to the calamity, and had experienced the hand of Providence in their favour. In process of time, when there was a falling off from the truth, we might farther expect that a person of so high a character as Noah, so particularly distinguished by the Deity, could not fail of being reverenced by his posterity : and, when idolatry prevailed, that he would be one of the first among the sons of men, to whom divine honours would be paid. Lastly, we might con

« PredošláPokračovať »