Noah's Big Boat
TEXT: Genesis 6:8,13-22; 7:11-17, 23-24; 8:13-14; 9:11-17
Many, many years ago a man named Noah built a huge boat. Other people have built boats, but that one was very special. God told Noah to build that one. God even told him what size to make it, and what kind of wood to use.
Do you know why God wanted Noah to build that big boat? God knew Noah would need it when the Flood came. Do you know what a flood is? That is when all the ground is covered with water. God was going to send so much rain that the whole earth would be covered with water. He was going to do that because all the people in the world were being very bad - all the people except Noah and his family. Noah loved God. The other people didn't love God.
No one had ever seen a flood before. They did not believe it would really happen. But Noah believed God. He and his family started right away to build the big boat.
When Noah's boat was finished, God told him to take at least two of every kind of animal into the boat. I wonder what the people thought when they saw all the bears and lions and elephants and monkeys and other animals go into the boat.
When Noah and his family and the animals were all inside the boat, God shut the door. Then He sent rain. It rained and rained all day and all night for forty days and nights! It rained until all the bushes and trees and houses and mountains and people were covered with water.
Noah and all that were in the boat with him were dry. Noah trusted God and knew He would keep them safe.
Finally the rain stopped, but for a long time the water stayed on the earth. Perhaps Noah looked out the window many times and wondered when they would be able to leave the boat. It was many more days before the land was dry again. When it was time for Noah and his family to leave the boat, they were so happy. Noah built an altar so they could pray and thank God for keeping them safe.
God was happy to hear Noah's prayer. He promised that the whole world would never again be destroyed by a flood. He sent a special sign of His promise. It was a beautiful rainbow!
Now whenever we see a rainbow in the sky we can remember the story of Noah. Noah trusted God and we can trust God too. We know God always keeps His promises. He loves us.
Our lesson on Noah's Ark provides an opportunity for a fun game that can be played in pairs or teams, using family members. Give each team or individual a bag containing three unrelated items. For example: a toy boat, a whisk broom, and a picture of an animal; or a paintbrush, the word "sunshine," and a book.
The teams must use the pictures, objects, or words as the basis for making up a story about Noah and what they would do in the ark during all that rain. They may practice telling it before acting it out. Emphasize that they should mention each item at least twice during their storytelling.
The other teams then try to guess the three key words. The children might choose to show the contents of their bags before beginning, instead of making it a guessing game.