Genesis 8


Summary of events so far

We’ve seen back in Genesis 6:13-14 and Genesis 7:6 God commanded Noah to build an ark whilst Noah was 600 years old. In Genesis 7:7-10 we see that Noah was given only seven days to get all the animals which God brought to him and a few days later the rains begun to fall, Genesis 7:10-11 and after 40 days the rains stopped, Genesis 7:12 / Genesis 7:17.

Brief outline

The landing of the ark. Genesis 8:1-5
The testing of the ground. Genesis 8:6-12
The animals were given a command to multiply. Genesis 8:13-19
Noah coming out of the ark. Genesis 8:20-22

The landing of the ark

‘But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded. Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed, and the rain had stopped falling from the sky. The water receded steadily from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the water had gone down, and on the seventeenth day of the seventh month the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. The waters continued to recede until the tenth month, and on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains became visible.’ Genesis 8:1-5

When the text says, ‘But God remembered Noah’ it doesn’t mean that God forgot about him, it simply means that God was turning his attention to him, thought about him, but not only to him but all who were on the ark, including the animals.

Before someone dies, they usually tell you that they will remember you in their will, this doesn’t mean that after their dead, that changes, we know they didn’t forget, as you could hear when the will being read out and your name is mentioned.

God sent the wind, Jonah 1:4, over the earth to make the water disperse. The earth as we know it today has been formed with new oceans and seas being formed, great canyons and valleys have been formed. This whole event took approximately 183 days from the time the rain stopped, and the mountains appear.

We’ve all seen the news where videos are sent to us of a tsunami where we are left in awe of the devastation it causes but imagine how much worse this would have been and the devastation they could see, as the whole earth was destroyed with water!

‘After forty days Noah opened a window he had made in the ark and sent out a raven, and it kept flying back and forth until the water had dried up from the earth. Then he sent out a dove to see if the water had receded from the surface of the ground. But the dove could find nowhere to perch because there was water over all the surface of the earth; so, it returned to Noah in the ark. He reached out his hand and took the dove and brought it back to himself in the ark. He waited seven more days and again sent out the dove from the ark. When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth. He waited seven more days and sent the dove out again, but this time it did not return to him. By the first day of the first month of Noah’s six hundred and first year, the water had dried up from the earth. Noah then removed the covering from the ark and saw that the surface of the ground was dry. By the twenty-seventh day of the second month the earth was completely dry. Then God said to Noah, ‘Come out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and their wives. Bring out every kind of living creature that is with you—the birds, the animals, and all the creatures that move along the ground—so they can multiply on the earth and be fruitful and increase in number on it.’ So, Noah came out, together with his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives. All the animals and all the creatures that move along the ground and all the birds—everything that moves on land—came out of the ark, one kind after another.’ Genesis 8:6-19

In an effort to determine how the land was and to see if the water had receded, Noah sent out a raven and two doves. The raven went back and forth from the ark until the day that the waters had dried, but it wasn’t until the third journey of the dove that didn’t return, he knew the waters were receded from the earth.

After the dove didn’t return on this trip, Noah waited another 57 days. We also see that Noah comes out of the ark with his family and when the animals come out, God commands them to breed and therefore multiply, filling the earth.

There’s an interesting change in the Hebrew language which shouldn’t go unmissed here, in Genesis 8:13 it’s the word ‘harevu’ which means dry, but in Genesis 8:14 the word used is ‘yavesah’ which also means dry but emphasises more on the earth being completely dry.

Where did the flood water go? Job 38:8-11 / Psalm 104:6-9.

First stop! God

‘Then Noah built an altar to the LORD and, taking some of all the clean animals and clean birds, he sacrificed burnt offerings on it. The LORD smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: ‘Never again will I curse the ground because of humans, even though every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done. ‘As long as the earth endures, seed-time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.’ Genesis 8:20-22

It’s important to note that the first thing Noah did when he got out of the ark was worship God. This is the first mention of an altar being built. It seems that some of the clean animals which were earlier taken into the ark, Genesis 7:2-9 were sacrificed as burnt offerings. God ‘smelled the pleasing aroma’ and received Noah’s worship as being from his heart.

We must remember that God doesn’t create evil or evil men, but He can use evil and evil men to His benefit, it’s here we see that God puts His plan into action, He’s going to use good and bad people in the future. Romans 9:17 / Isaiah 45:3-7.

God isn’t saying that mankind won’t have the choice of freewill, He’s saying that people will have a choice, but God will use and can use anyone He sees fit for purpose, people’s whose hearts are already hard and won’t listen to God or turn to Him.

Yes, God promises not to destroy the earth with water again, but that doesn’t mean the earth won’t be destroyed in the future, this time with fire. 2 Peter 3:10-13.


From Genesis 7:24 and Genesis 8:3 we saw that the flood was on the earth for 150 days. After another 150 days from the start of the rain falling, the ark rested on Mount Ararat, Genesis 8:4. It was a further 73 days which passed before the water receded, and the mountaintops appeared.

Noah waited a further 40 more days, before sending out the raven, Genesis 8:7 and then Noah sent out a dive, Genesis 8:8-9. Another seven days pass before a second dove was sent out and came back with a leaf, Genesis 8:10-11 and after seven more days, another dove was realised, never to rerun, Genesis 8:12 and so, Noah waited a further 36 days.

After another 57 days the earth was completely dry, and Noah left the ark, when he was almost 601 years of age, Genesis 8:14.

The reason for working out these days is because this tells us that from the time it started to rain until Noah left the ark was around one year and ten days. Imagine the smell from being in the ark all this time, I’m sure just as God was pleased with the sacrificial aroma, that Noah and his family would have been too.

Go To Genesis 9



"All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness."

2 Timothy 3:16