How God Destroyed the World

People all over the world had become so bad that God decided to destroy the world that He had made. There was only one man who pleased Him, and that man was Noah. So God told Noah, "I have decided to destroy all people, because the world is full of their violent deeds. Make yourself a giant box, or ark, made out of "gopher" wood. Make rooms in it and cover it with tar inside and out. Make it 150 yards long, 25 yards wide, and 15 yards high. Make a roof for the ark. Put a door in the side and lower, middle, and upper decks for it. I am going to send a flood on the earth to destroy every living being. Go into the ark with your wife, your sons, and their wives. Take a male and female of every kind of animal and bird into the ark with you to keep them alive. Take along all kinds of food for you and them." So Noah built the ark as God commanded.

When the ark was finished, God told Noah, "Go into the ark with your whole family. Take with you seven pairs of animals that are eaten and sacrificed; take one pair of all the other animals. Also take seven pairs of each kind of bird." So Noah went into the ark with his wife, his three sons named Shem, Ham, and Japheth, and their wives. They took every kind of animal and bird with them as God had commanded. Then God shut the door to the ark.

That day it began to rain. It rained for forty days and nights. The water became so deep that the ark began to float. That water continued to rise until it covered the highest mountains. All the people and animals on the earth drowned. Only those in the ark were left alive. The ark floated for five months. Then as the water went down, the ark came to rest on one of the mountains of Ararat. The water kept going down. Noah opened the window and sent out a raven. It did not come back, but kept flying around until the flood waters were gone. So Noah went out a dove. At first the dove could not find a place to land because of the water, so it returned to the ark. A week later Noah sent out the dove again. This time it returned with a fresh olive leaf in its beak. So Noah knew that the water had gone down. He waited another week and sent the dove out again. This time it did not come back. So Noah removed a covering and looked around and saw that the ground was getting dry. After they had been in the ark for over a year God told Noah that it was time to go out. So Noah, his wife, his three sons and their wives went out of the ark together with all the animals and birds.

Noah built an altar to the Lord and sacrificed animals and birds on it. So God blessed Noah and his sons and said, "Have many children who will live all over the earth. You can eat all kinds of animals and birds and fish, as well as green plants. The one thing you must not eat is meat with blood still in it. Whoever kills a man must himself be killed. I am making my covenant with you: never again will all living beings be destroyed by a flood; never again will a flood destroy the earth. As a sign of this, I am putting the rainbow in the clouds to remind me of this covenant." So the three sons of Noah had many children and all the people in the world today came from them.

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