Jah’s Covenant With Noah
Centuries before the time of Abraham, Jah made a covenant with Noah, assuring Noah that He would never again destroy the world by flood (Gen. 9).
Noah lived at a time when the whole earth was filled with violence and corruption — yet Noah did not allow the evil standards of his day to rob him of fellowship with Jah. He stood out as the only one who “walked with Jah” (Gen. 6:9), as was also true of his great-grandfather Enoch (Gen. 5:22). “Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations” (Gen. 6:9). The Lord singled out Noah from among all his contemporaries and chose him as the man to accomplish a great work.
When Jah saw the wickedness that prevailed in the world (Gen. 6:5), He told Noah of His intention to destroy the ancient world by a universal flood. Jah instructed Noah to build an ark (a large barge) in which he and his family would survive the universal deluge. Noah believed Jah and “according to all that Jah commanded him, so he did” (Gen. 6:22).
Noah is listed among the heroes of faith. “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with Jahly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (Heb. 11:7).
With steadfast confidence in Jah, Noah started building the ark. During this time, Noah continued to preach Jah’s judgment and mercy, warning the unJahly of their approaching doom. Peter reminds us of how Jah “did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the unJahly” (2 Pet. 2:5).
Noah preached for 120 years, apparently without any converts. At the end of that time, “when … the longsuffering of Jah waited in the days of Noah … eight souls were saved through water” (1 Pet. 3:20).
People continued in their evil ways and ignored his pleadings and warnings until the flood overtook them. When the ark was ready, Noah entered in with all kinds of animals “and the Lord shut him in” (Gen. 7:16), cut off completely from the rest of mankind.
Noah was grateful to the Lord who had delivered him from the flood. After the flood, he built an altar to Jah (Gen. 8:20) and made a sacrifice, which was accepted graciously, for in it “the Lord smelled a soothing aroma” (Gen. 8:21).
The Lord promised Noah and his descendants that He would never destroy the world again with a universal flood (Gen. 9:15). The Lord made an everlasting covenant with Noah and his descendants, establishing the rainbow as the sign of His promise (Gen. 9:1-17).
Another part of the covenant involved the sanctity of human life, i.e., that “whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed; for in the image of Jah He made man” (Gen. 9:6). Every time we see a rainbow today we are reminded of that agreement — this covenant has not been done away with. As long as Jah still sends rainbows after a storm, capital punishment will still be a part of Jah’s law for the human race.