Parashah 2: Noach (Noah)
Genesis 6:9 through 11:32
Parashah 2: Noach (Noah) - Genesis 6:9 through 11:32.
Haftarah (Writings and Prophets): Isaiah 54:1 through 55:5.
B'rit Hadasha (New Testament): Matthew 24:36-44; Luke 17:26-37; Acts 2:1-16; 1 Peter 3:18-22; 2 Peter 2:5.
Tanach Scriptures are from Stern's Complete Jewish Bible; B'rit Chadash Scriptures from the Aramaic English New Testament.
Recently we started reading the Torah all over again. You learned that Torah was written by Moshe (Moses) and consists of the first five Books of the Bible which contain God's original Divine Instructions in Righteousness. Since this is a Netzarim (Nazarene/Messianic) website, we refer to God by His proper Name: YHWH (most likely pronounced "Yah-way"). His Son's Name is Y'shua (pronounced "Ye-shoo-ah").
So, diving right in, by the time we get to Genesis 6, we've already seen the Creation and the downfall and destruction of a lost mankind. Noah, in YHWH's eyes, was the only righteous man on Earth; someone who did everything YHWH asked him to do. And so it is no surprise that Noah and his family were the ONLY people who were saved from destruction (Genesis 6:9-22) - for Noah was a righteous man:
Genesis 6: 9 Here is the history of Noach. In his generation, Noach was a man righteous and wholehearted; Noach walked with God.
What powerful words! Noah was RIGHTEOUS and WHOLEHEARTED before YHWH! Being "righteous" means more than just "believing" in God; it means to believe, hear, obey and do.
Surely there were others on earth who "believed" but they were destroyed because they didn't bother adhering to YHWH's Torah - His "Divine Instructions in Righteousness." We see examples of how Noah obeyed when he sacrificed CLEAN animals to YHWH in Genesis 8:20. How did he know to offer CLEAN animals? He came from the "good" line of Abel and Enosh whose descendants called on the Name of YHWH (Genesis 4 and 5).
Note also that Noach was not a Jew. There were no Jews until Jacob had one of his 12 sons whom he named Yehudah (Judah) where the term "Jew" originated. Noach wasn't even a Hebrew as nobody was considered Hebrew (Heb: "to cross over") until Genesis 12:1 when Abram (who was later renamed Abraham) accepted and obeyed YHWH and "crossed over" physically and spiritually into the land YHWH showed him, when he became the first Patriarch and Torah obedient follower of YHWH. Yet Noach, back in Genesis 6 (like Cain and Abel in Genesis 4) was Torah observant - which reveals that one does NOT have to "be Jewish" in order to obey His Divine Instructions! (This fact is also revealed in the "New Testament, when read in context.)
When YHWH ordered an ark to be built, Noah immediately obeyed, ultimately bringing food and all the animals aboard. Now, here's something most have probably never realized: The ark (built in the desert!), at 450 feet, was 1.8 times longer than a 747! The Titanic at 883 feet, was almost twice as long as the ark. This means it wasn't an overnight miracle; as a matter of fact, it appears it was an almost century-long undertaking by the time all was said and done! How do we know this? By reading the following scriptures:
Genesis 5: 32 Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Genesis 7: 6 Now Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of water came upon the earth.
Genesis 11: 10 These are the records of the generations of Shem. Shem was one hundred years old, and became the father of Arpachshad two years after the flood; (That means Noah's son Shem was 98 when he entered the Ark!)
So this great undertaking, the construction of the Ark, took place in the nearly 100 years before Noah turned 600 years old!
Now, here's another oddity: Children's nursery rhymes suggest Noah took two of each animal into the ark. What they fail to mention is the "two" represent just one couple. What YHWH actually ordered was that Noah take seven pairs of each CLEAN animal and one pair of each UNCLEAN animal aboard (Genesis 7:2). He was also to take seven couples of all birds (Genesis 7:3) and each kind of animal creeping on the ground, which would all come to Noah (Gen. 6:20).
The unspoken reason YHWH ordered "clean" and "unclean" animals into the post-Flood world, it seems, was because all the animals were important to the eco-system. The seven pairs each of clean animals on the Ark ensured ample food supply as well as a steady supply of animals for sacrifices after the flood was over (Genesis 8:20).
And the "unclean" birds/animals/fish are the "garbage disposals" of the world, serving to rid our environment of dying/dead, diseased and decayed things. And let's not forget that "unclean" birds/animals/fish set YHWH's people apart from the rest of the world, which doesn't adhere to the kosher rule (see the Book of Leviticus)!
Food for thought: Check these two scriptures out, as they reveal YHWH's idea of "family" - male and female; not male and male or female and female. In the following we see him for the second time (since Genesis 1: 28) command His creation to "be fruitful and multiply." Only male and female can "multiply."
Genesis 6:19 "From everything living, from each kind of living being, you are to bring two into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they are to be male and female. 20 Of each kind of bird, each kind of livestock, and each kind of animal creeping on the ground, two are to come to you, so that they can be kept alive.
Genesis 8:15 God said to Noach, 16 "Go out from the ark, you, your wife, your sons and your son's wives with you. 17 Bring out with you every living thing you have with you - birds, livestock and every animal that creeps on the earth - so that they can swarm on the earth, be fruitful and multiply on the earth." 18 So Noach went out with his sons, his wife and his sons' wives; 19 every animal, every creeping thing and every bird, whatever moves on the earth, according to their families, went out of the ark.
Several people have written to The Refiner's Fire to argue that there must have been others besides Noah and his family who survived the Flood, because of the various races in the world. But, according to the Scriptures, only Noah and his family were spared:
Genesis 7: 21 All living beings that moved on the earth perished - birds, livestock, other animals, insects, and every human being, 22 everything in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life; whatever was on dry land died. 23 He wiped out every living thing on the surface of the ground - not only human beings, but livestock, creeping animals and birds in the air. They were wiped out from the earth; only Noach was left, along with those who were with him in the ark. 24 The water held power over the earth for 150 days.
The only ones that made it through the flood, apparently, were the fish in the seas, as they couldn't drown.
Here's some more food for thought: Since Noah and his family started the human race basically from scratch, it stands to reason they may have all been a different "race" or carried the DNA to start the races living in the world today.
Genesis 9: 18 The sons of Noach who went out from the ark were Shem, Ham and Yefet. Ham is the father of Kena'an. 19 These three were the sons of Noach, and the whole earth was populated by them.
Here's an interesting side note about Genesis 9:5-6: When coupled with Genesis 1:26-27, we can see that abortion (a contemporary issue about which there are endless pro and con debates and arguments)IS MURDER! The "abortion rights" advocates keep insisting that "it's not a baby until it's born." Let's see what the BIBLE says:
Genesis 1:26 Then God said, "Let us make humankind in our image, in the likeness of ourselves; and let them rule over the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the animals, and over all the earth, and over every crawling creature that crawls on the earth." 27 So God created humankind in his own image; in the image of God he created him: male and female he created them. 28 God blessed them: God said to them, "Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth and subdue it." (CJB)
NOTE that YHWH "created humankind in his own image" (not in appearance; but rather, to reflect His Essence, "who" He is; His Divine Holiness....)
Eggs and sperm reside inside LIVING beings. They are living organisms that DO something: when activated via the sex act, they come together to create a living, breathing human being that does what? - that reflects YHWH's IMAGE!
And here is what YHWH says to those who destroy HIS Image:
Genesis 9:5 I will certainly demand an accounting for the blood of your lives: I will demand it from every animal and from every human being. I will demand from every human being an accounting for the life of his fellow human being. 6 Whoever sheds human blood, by a human being will his own blood be shed; for God made human beings in his image. (CJB)
An embryo is nourished by human blood. It GROWS inside its mother, which means it is ALIVE! (Dead organisms don't grow.) So, no matter what the "Pro-Choice" types insist: snuffing out an embryo's life is MURDER in YHWH's eyes!
Thank You, YHWH, for that awesome revelation!
After the Flood, Noach built an altar to ADONAI. Then he took from every clean animal and every clean bird, and he offered burnt offerings on the altar. (Genesis 8:20). (Note, he offered CLEAN animals, as "clean" was already established as we found in Genesis 7:2). In Genesis 8:21, YHWH promises never again to curse the ground because of man or destroy all living things again. (See also Genesis 9:13-17.) Then He blessed Noah and his family and commanded them to be "fruitful and multiply" (something man, via all manner of contraceptives, refuses to do today).
Genesis 9:8 God spoke to Noach and his sons with him; he said, 9 "As for me - I am herewith establishing my covenant with you, with your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you - the birds, the livestock and every wild animal with you, all going out of the ark, every animal on earth. 11 I will establish my covenant with you that never again will all living beings be destroyed by the waters of a flood, and there will never again be a flood to destroy the earth." 12 God added, "Here is the sign of the covenant I am making between myself and you and every living creature with you, for all generations to come: 13 I am putting my rainbow in the cloud - it will be there as a sign of the covenant between myself and the earth.
14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth, and the rainbow is seen in the cloud; 15 I will remember my covenant which is between myself and you and every living creature of any kind; and the water will never again become a flood to destroy all living beings. 16 The rainbow will be in the cloud; so that when I look at it, I will remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of any kind on the earth." 17 God said to Noach, "This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between myself and every living creature on the earth."
The rainbow is a beautiful sign from God! Unfortunately, the ever-growing "Gay rights" groups today are using the rainbow as the symbol for their organization; and, to gain "awareness" they are featuring the rainbow on television ads, on T-shirts, children's clothes and on flags, etc. Most children in North America know that the rainbow in children's clothing, toys, stationery and such, represent the Gay Pride movement under the guise, 'God loves all of us, no matter who we are!' This is a direct insult to YHWH as each and every one of His covenants to us is holy and sacred.
Notice something very interesting in Genesis 9:8 which tells us: 8 God spoke to Noach and his sons with him; he said, 9 "As for me - I am herewith establishing my covenant with you, with your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you - the birds, the livestock and every wild animal with you, all going out of the ark, every animal on earth. 11 I will establish my covenant with you that never again will all living beings be destroyed by the waters of a flood, and there will never again be a flood to destroy the earth."
Who YHWH was talking to? The "righteous" Noah and his sons. He wasn't talking to any "Jews or Gentiles" because there were no Jews or Gentiles back then. We don't actually see anyone up until Genesis 14:13 labeled anything at all except for "man" and "woman." However, YHWH did distinguish between "righteous" and "unrighteous" - meaning, those who knew about Him and obeyed His commands. Noah was the only man in the world at the time who obeyed Him and that is why he and his family were saved from the flood!
Anyway, Avram became a "Hebrew" (which in Hebrew means, "to cross over"), when he obeyed YHWH by dropping everything and moving into the land God told him (in Genesis 12 which will be next week's Torah portion). From that point on, all his descendants became known as "Hebrews." Hebrews were all Torah observant, meaning they obeyed YHWH's Divine Commands.
Reiterating here, Avram was ultimately renamed "Abraham" (Genesis 17:5) which means "father of many." After him came his son Isaac and grandson Jacob. Jacob had a son named Yehudah (Judah, Genesis 29:35) where the term "Jew" originated. So, until then, there were no "Jews" but yet ALL believers were Torah observant! Ultimately, "the Jews" were charged with taking Torah into the world (Genesis 49:10, Micah 4:2). YHWH caused Yeshua to be born into the Tribe of Yehudah/Judah....
So what are we getting at? In the Tanakh ("Old Testament") the words "gentile", "heathen" and "pagan" were often synonymous. A Gentile was (and still is) a non-Hebrew (a Hebrew term which means, "to cross over"); someone who did/does not believe in, or worship YHWH according to His Torah. (See Ezra 6:21, Nehemiah 5:8-9, Isaiah 9:1, 42:6.)
YHWH made the covenant in Genesis 9:8 with a "righteous" man and the animals and birds; He did NOT make this covenant with the "Gentiles" or with any religious group! Nowhere in the entire Bible do we see that He ever made a covenant with "the Gentiles." Ever. His covenants - as we will see in subsequent Torah studies - were all made with HIS Torah observant people, including the "New Covenant" (Jeremiah 31:32, which was made with the Torah observant Houses of Israel and Judah!
The good news is, He has always accepted anyone who wished to receive Him as their God - with the stipulation that they do EXACTLY as His Hebrews/Israel did; meaning they had to OBEY His Torah. That has never changed!
Numbers 15: 13 "'Everyone who is native-born must do these things in this way when he brings an offering made by fire as an aroma pleasing to the LORD. 14 For the generations to come, whenever an alien or anyone else living among you presents an offering made by fire as an aroma pleasing to the LORD, he must do exactly as you do. 15 The community is to have the same rules for you and for the alien living among you; this is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come. You and the alien shall be the same before the LORD: 16 The same laws and regulations will apply both to you and to the alien living among you.'"
Can anyone produce scripture to show that the above was ever negated?
Moving on, in Genesis 9:20 we see something odd: Noach (or Noah) became inebriated and lay naked in his tent only to be discovered by his son, Ham (the father of Kena'an). Rather than to simply cover his father's nakedness, he apparently "made a big deal of it" and told his brothers, Shem and Yefet, who then promptly covered their father. When Noach awoke and find out what his youngest son Ham had done to him, he cursed Ham's son, Kena'an. Why did he curse Ham's son instead of Ham? Well, in part because, since Ham hurt Noah, Noah wanted to cause Ham similar pain....After all, curses are generational (Exodus 34:7; Lamentations 5:7. Let's take a look at that passage:
Genesis 9: 20 Then Noah began farming and planted a vineyard. 21 He drank of the wine and became drunk, and uncovered himself inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan (or Kena'an), saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside. 23 But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it upon both their shoulders and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were turned away, so that they did not see their father's nakedness. 24 When Noah awoke from his wine, he knew what his youngest son had done to him. 25 So he said, "Cursed be Canaan; A servant of servants He shall be to his brothers." 26 He also said, "Blessed be the LORD, The God of Shem; And let Canaan be his servant. 27 "May God enlarge Japheth, And let him dwell in the tents of Shem; And let Canaan be his servant."
We're not told exactly how things transpired, but Ham probably went outside laughing and joking and generally making fun of his father, thus breaking the Fifth Commandment. (We can only surmise that Ham felt he had a "juicy tidbit" to share with his brothers, which built up his carnal nature and made him "feel good" about himself.) Regardless, Ham's actions caused his brothers to have to go in to cover their father because they couldn't just let him lay there to be seen by others. In Biblical times people weren't as "loose" as in our decadent society where nakedness is "cool" and "in" and something to be flaunted. Back then (as it actually SHOULD be now) it was disgusting and shameful for anyone but a spouse to see you naked. God tells us to honor our mother and father. This means, if they mess up, we are NOT to make fun of them or degrade them behind their backs in any way; we are to discuss with them IN PRIVATE if they've done something shameful so they can get themselves right with God again.
On a side note concerning Noah's son Shem, the Hebrew word for "character" is "shem". The many times that "name" (Shem) appears in reference to YHWH (i.e., haShem), we see the connection to Character. In reference to the above, we see how Shem reacted to his father Noah's situation. He was the one who initiated covering father's nakedness, and how... walking backwards so as to not view, and to preserve dignity with the covering. This is proclaiming what his "character" was like - a copy of YHWH's or Yeshua's; and thus, he was named Shem - name/character. So, when we call upon the "name" of YHWH for salvation/deliverance, we are calling on His Character to act on our behalf.
Moving on, in Genesis 10:5-32, where we see that Noach's descendants "begat" different peoples and nations. "How it all began" is then clarified in Genesis 11:1-9. (Notice how our human tendency is always to "outsmart God"....whose ultimate plans for mankind, of course, will not and cannot be thwarted!)
Genesis 11:1 The whole earth used the same language, the same words. 2 It came about that as they traveled from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shin'ar and lived there. 3 They said to one another, "Come, let's make bricks and bake them in the fire." So they had bricks for building-stone and clay for mortar. 4 Then they said, "Come, let's build ourselves a city with a tower that has its top reaching up into heaven, so that we can make a name for ourselves and not be scattered all over the earth."
5 ADONAI came down to see the city and the tower the people were building. 6 ADONAI said, "Look, the people are united, they all have a single language, and see what they're starting to do! At this rate, nothing they set out to accomplish will be impossible for them! 7 Come, let's go down and confuse their language, so that they won't understand each other's speech." 8 So from there ADONAI scattered them all over the earth, and they stopped building the city. 9 For this reason it is called Bavel [confusion] - because there ADONAI confused the language of the whole earth, and from there ADONAI scattered them all over the earth.
Here's something else interesting: Back in Genesis 6:3 YHWH told man, "My Spirit will not live in human beings forever, for they too are flesh: therefore their life span is to be 120 years." It is not until the death of Moshe in Deuteronomy 34:7 that we see this actualized, as Moshe died when he was 120. Until then we see man's years becoming fewer and fewer; and then after Deuteronomy, man's age is no longer discussed anymore. Today, only very few people manage to make it to age 100 and beyond!
One final note:
Have you ever noticed that, since YHWH first gave us rain in the days of Noah, He has been using water to cleanse each man of his sin through baptisms and the washing of clothing? We read myriad commandments in the Laws He gave to Moshe to cleanse both body and clothing of impurities. Before they met YHWH at Mt. Sinai, the entire nation was to wash and consecrate themselves because God had intended to make them a holy nation - a nation of priests. Every priest also consecrated himself in a like fashion before being ordained. Washing is very important to YHWH as we can see in the following verses:
In Psalm 51:1-7, after he committed adultery with Bathsheba, David asks to be cleansed: ...2 Wash me completely from my guilt, and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I know my crimes, my sin confronts me all the time. 4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil from your perspective; so that you are right in accusing me and justified in passing sentence. 5 True, I was born guilty, was a sinner from the moment my mother conceived me. 6 Still, you want truth in the inner person; so make me know wisdom in my inmost heart. 7 Sprinkle me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
And in the beginning of the Book of Isaiah, the prophet tells the nation in Isaiah 1 verses 15-16 and 18 to "Wash and make yourselves clean."
In Jeremiah 4, the prophet beseeches Jerusalem to "Wash the evil from your heart and be saved. How long will you harbor wicked thoughts?"
That was the job John the Baptist was doing on the day he baptized Yeshua. As a Levitical priest, he was helping his fellow believers cleanse themselves of evil/sin by using the Jordan as a Mikvah or baptismal pool. As Luke 3:3 explains, "He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins."
But even John was confused, wondering why he would have to baptize and purify one like Yeshua who was without sin, for - as we read in Matthew 3:12 ... Then came Y'shua from Galeela to the Yordanan to Yochanan, 13. to be immersed by him. 14. But Yochanan was refusing him and said, I should be immersed by you, and you come to me. 15. Then Y'shua answered and said to him Allow (it) now for as such, it is proper for us to fulfill all righteousness, and then he allowed it.
To fulfill righteousness? Surely not Yeshua, for He was without sin! No, it was for the righteousness of mankind. Before he could minister and teach mankind how to apply the laws YHWH gave to Moshe in the way God intended (in accord with the Spirit of the Law, not just the Letter or legalism of the Laws which is how the Levites had mistaught the laws), Yeshua first took on the sins of the world which had been committed until the day He ministered. When Yeshua was immersed, YHWH was keeping His word. He was not flooding the world to rid it of sin; He was covering Him who carried the sins of the world in Him so all who believe would be found righteous in YHWH's eyes.
In this week's Haftarah portion, we see in Isaiah 54:3-17 that YHWH "created the destroyer" - However...we discover we CAN choose to be righteous; and when we do, He takes us back with open arms, as revealed in our B'rit Chadasha portion. (We invite you also to read our "Explanation of "this generation"....) Let's take a look:
Isaiah 54:7 "Briefly I abandoned you, but with great compassion I am taking you back. 8 I was angry for a moment and hid my face from you; but with everlasting grace I will have compassion on you," says ADONAI your Redeemer. 9 "For me this is like Noach's flood. Just as I swore that no flood like Noach's would ever again cover the earth, so now I swear that never again will I be angry with you or rebuke you. 10 For the mountains may leave and the hills be removed, but my grace will never leave you, and my covenant of peace will not be removed," says ADONAI, who has compassion on you.
Note that YHWH briefly abandoned His people, but His grace will never leave us. Grace has always been around since Adam and Eve! He could have destroyed them after they chose to disobey; but instead, He allowed them to live outside the Garden. He could have wiped out the entire earth, but He allowed Noah to start the human race all over again.
(As you can see, "grace" didn't start with "Jesus" and it doesn't mean we are free to do whatever we want; YHWH shows grace and mercy to HIS people - those who have made the decision to turn from sin and return to Him to walk in His Torah....He knows that we tend to stray, especially in our youth. But He assures us that He loves us and will welcome us back: Isaiah 54: 4 Don't be afraid, for you won't be ashamed; don't be discouraged, for you won't be disgraced. You will forget the shame of your youth....)
B'rit Chadasha reading:
YHWH, throughout the millennia, has kept reaching out to His people - even to the point of providing us an easy way to gain salvation and eternal life through His Son who martyred Himself to become our final SIN Sacrifice:
(NOTE: Our use of the term "martyr" is intentional because traditional Jews love to point out that "G-d never required human sacrifice!" Well, Y'shua wasn't a "human sacrifice" because nobody "sacrificed" Him. He was a Divine Sacrifice who willingly went to the cross/stake. As a human being, He had the choice to obey YHWH or not. As we see time and time again, He CHOSE to obey. He KNEW who He was....)
1 Peter 3: 18. For the Mashiyach also once died for our sins, the righteous for sinners; that he might bring you to Elohim. And he died in body but lived in spirit. 19. And he preached to those souls which were detained in Sheol (Hades) 20. which were formerly disobedient in the days of Noah when the long suffering of Elohim commanded an ark to be made, in hope of their repentance; and eight souls only entered into it and were kept alive in the waters. 21. And you also, by a like figure, are made alive by immersion (not when you wash your bodies from filth, but when you confess Elohim with a pure conscience) and by the resurrection of Y'shua the Mashiyach 22. who is taken up to heaven and is on the right hand of Elohim and Messengers and authorities, and powers are subject to him.
 "Alive in the waters" points to the waters of the Mikveh, the complete immersion (baptism) into living waters after a soul has repented of their sin and agreed to walk in the newness of life (the Kingdom) as offered through Mashiyach. It is also worth noting that the words "in hope of their repentance" do not appear in the Greek traditions.
Matthew 24: 36. About the day and about the hour no man knows, not even the Messengers of heaven, but the Father alone. 37. And as in the days of Nukh (Noah), thus will be the coming of the Son of man. 38. For as they were before the deluge, eating and drinking and taking women and giving them in marriage to men up to the day that Nukh entered into the ark. 39. And they did not know until the deluge came and took them all, thus will be the coming of the Son of man. 40. Then two men will be in the field, one will be taken and one will be left. 41. And two women will be grinding at the mill. One will be taken and one will be left. 42. Therefore be alert, because you do not know in what hour your Master will come. 43. And know this, that if the master of the house had known, he would not have allowed his house to be plundered. 44. Because of this also, you should be prepared, because in an hour that you do not expect, the Son of man will come.
There is so much more that could be said about today's study, and we wholeheartedly urge you to read the cited scriptures through, if you haven't already done so. If you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to write! Thank you for reading our Torah study notes for this week, and we pray for you a blessed week ahead, that may you ever grow in your knowledge of YHWH. And, as always, please let us know if you ever see anything in our studies that sounds "off the mark"! Nobody has the market cornered on absolute Truth; we are all learning and obeying to the best of our abilities....
The next Parashah reading will be:
Parashah 3: Lekh L'kha (Get yourself out) - Genesis 12:1 through 17:27.
Haftarah (Writings and Prophets): Isaiah 40:27 through 41:16.
B'rit Hadasha (New Testament): Acts 7:1-8; Romans 3:19 - 5:6; Galatians 3:15-18, 5:1-6; Colossians 2:11-15; Hebrews 7:1-19, 11:8-12.
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