These are the records of the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his time; Noah walked with God.
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The Hebrew Word
The name of this week's parashah, נח, (Noach) comes from the Hebrew root word for "rest" and refers to the Patriarch of the Flood. It is (Strong's #5146) and the word is used 46 times in 39 verses in the Tanakh. All of these instances refer to the man spoken of in this week's parashah.
First use in Scripture
The first time Noach is used in Scripture is in Genesis 5:9.
Last use in Scripture
The last time Noach is used in Scripture is in Ezekiel 14:20.
"Or if I should send a plague against that country and pour out My wrath in blood on it to cut off man and beast from it, even though Noah, Daniel and Job were in its midst, as I live," declares the Lord GOD, "they could not deliver either their son or their daughter. They would deliver only themselves by their righteousness."
- The Flood - Genesis 7:1
- The Flood Subsides - Genesis 8:1
- Covenant of the Rainbow - Genesis 9:1
- Descendents of Noach - Genesis 10:1
- Universal Language, Babel, & Confusion - Genesis 11:1
- Descendents of Shem - Genesis 11:10
Portraits of Messiah
The ark of Noach's Flood is a portrait of Messiah. Consider these parallels:
- Both were given the purpose of protecting humanity.
- Humanity goes in and they are saved.
- G-d shuts the door and seals humanity in. There is nothing we can do to seal ourselves in.
- There is nothing we can do to remove ourselves from the ark until we are taken to our final destination.
Consider the story of Noach's flood. It is a story of salvation and redemption of humanity as G-d saves Noach and his family from the judgment in the Flood. This pictures the work of Messiah. There is an interesting detail that Scripture provides that intimately ties G-d's saving work in the story of Noach with G-d's saving work in the story of Messiah: dates.
No...not the fruit. The calendar dates certain events happened provide the link. Consider Genesis 8:4-
In the seventh month, on the 17th day of the month, the ark rested upon the mountains of Ararat.
What's so important about that date?
Before G-d established the beginning of the calendar year for the Israelites with their Exodus from Egypt (in Exodus 12:2) the calendar year was reckoned as beginning with Creation. Hence this verse is telling us that in the seventh month of the 600th year (Genesis 7:6) of Noach's life in the seventh month the ark rested in the mountains of Ararat.
What's so important about the seventh month? Here is a list of the Hebrew months in a calendar that begins with Creation:
We see that the seventh month from Creation is the month of Nisan... the month in which Pesach occurs. The 14th day of Nisan is Passover (Exodus 12:1-11). We know that Messiah was slain on Pesach. 1 Corinthians 5:7 calls Him "our Passover".
If the 14th day of the 7th month is Pesach then what happened three days later on the 17th day of the 7th month? Messiah's resurrection!
Just as G-d completed His work of redemption by bringing the ark (and Noach's family) safely to rest (Genesis 8:4) so, too, G-d completed His work of redemption with Messiah's resurrection from the dead.
Verse by Verse Notes
Noach is the first parashah named after a person. It is interesting to note that the person that is the focus of this parashah is considered by Scripture to be a righteous man. Sarah's name is also included in a parashah name as are Yitro, Korach, Balak, and Pinchas.
Below is a chart of the antediluvian (pre-Flood) forefathers. It lists when they were born and when they died, when their firstborn son was born, and how long between when they died and the Flood. (Click the chart to enlarge it.)
Shem was alive the first 110 years of Avraham's life. He could have related to Avram (and Yitzchak!) the events of the Flood. He could have also provided a third-hand story of the Garden of Eden: Adam could have told Metushelach (Methuselah) who could have told Shem.