Bible Text: Genesis 6-9
Memory Verse: John 10:9 “I am the door; by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved.”

Hello boys and girls! We have a great story for today. It is another of God’s “Greatest Shows On Earth.” Today’s story is one of the most fascinating and exciting stories in the whole Bible, and one that children always love to hear; the story of Noah and the Ark. But, Noah’s Ark is more than just a story of a big boat and a bunch of animals. It is really the story of God’ promise to us. Listen closely girls and boys to hear what that special promise is all about.

It had only been about 1500 years since God created Adam and Eve, and since they had committed the first sin. Many more people had been born since then, and many many more sins had been committed. You see, since Adam’s choice to sin, every man, woman, and child born on Earth was born a sinner with a “sin nature.” That means that it’s just in them to sin, and they, and we, choose to sin just like Adam did. By the time Noah was born, people were sinning all over the place! Noah sinned too, but Noah was sorry for being a sinner and for sinning. He asked God to forgive him, and he trusted God; that God would send a way for his sins to be taken away. That way, boys and girls, would be Jesus. When Jesus died on the cross, it was for everybody’s sins; yours, mine, and all the people who have EVER lived on this Earth… except for his own sins. Jesus didn’t die for His own sins because Jesus NEVER sinned. He is Perfect. He is God. So, even though Jesus hadn’t done it yet, Jesus WOULD die for Noah’s sins too. And Noah believed that, and God called him “righteous” which means ‘right with God.’ In fact, the Bible tells us that Noah and his family were the only righteous people on Earth at that time. They were the only people who truly loved God with all their heart, and soul, and mind, and strength, like the Bible says we should. God was VERY pleased with Noah and his family. But, not with everyone else.

Everyone else was so wicked. The Bible tells us that they constantly did evil; and when they weren’t doing evil, they were thinking about doing evil, all the time! This made God very sad. So sad, that God was even sorry that He had ever made people, because His heart was so broken for them. But then God looked at Noah and how righteous Noah was, and this made God happy! God loved the wicked people too, but the wicked people didn’t love God. God knew He had to do something; one last thing to try to get the people to see. Something very BIG!

So, God talked to Noah. The conversations went something like this: “Listen Noah! I am about to destroy every living thing on Earth with a flood. These people are so wicked! They won’t repent and turn away from their wicked ways and follow me. I would forgive them if they did, just as I forgave you. I am going to give them one more chance!”

What was that one more chance boys and girls? Well, God had a very special job for Noah to do. Really, God had 2 special jobs for Noah! One you probably know, but the other you may not know about. The first special job was what God told Noah next in the Bible:

“Make an ark!” God told Noah, “a big boat!”
“Use Gopher wood, and seal it with tar. Make it 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high. Make a window that goes all around the top of the ark. Make 3 decks (floors, or stories) inside; a lower deck, a middle deck, and an upper deck. Make ONE door in the side of the ark. You and your wife, and your 3 sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth, and their wives, are all going to be saved on the ark. Take two of every kind of animal with you onto the ark, a male and a female, to keep them safe from the flood. (Seven of some special kinds of animals.) Take food enough for you and your family, and for all the animals.”

WOW! That was a big job that God wanted Noah to do! It was going to take a long time build the ark the way God had commanded. But Noah loved God and always tried to obey God. So, even if it took him a hundred years, Noah was going to do it!

And, do you know what?! It DID take around a hundred years! The Bible tells us that Noah was around 500 years old when he started the ark, and 600 years old when the flood came. (People lived a LOT longer back then!) That is a hundred years!

Boys and girls, remember I told you that God had 2 big jobs for Noah to do? I think God wanted it to take a hundred years to build the ark because God also wanted Noah to do something else in that hundred years… Preach about God! The Bible tells us in 2 Peter 2:5 that Noah was a “Preacher of Righteousness” to the people of his day! That means he preached to them about turning from their evil, sinful ways, and asking God to forgive them. He told them how to be “right with God” the way the Bible says Noah was. If any of the people had listened to Noah, they would have been saved on the ark too, along with Noah and his family. That was their “one last chance” that God was giving them. It was a chance that lasted for nearly a hundred years! But sadly, no one listened to Noah except his family. How do I know that? Because they were the only ones who were saved on the ark. God was sad too, but the people had a choice to make, just like Noah did, and just like we do. We either choose to follow God, or we don’t. Noah and his family chose to follow God. I have chosen to follow God. What have you chosen?

It was time to go on the ark. God brought the animals to Noah, and Noah put them on the ark, and into stalls he had made for them. The food that they would need to feed themselves and for the animals was brought onto the ark. WHEW! What a job! Everything had to be put in its place. They finished just in time! The Bible says that as soon as Noah and his family and all the animals were safely on board the ark, the rain came. The Bible also says that GOD closed the door of the ark. How many doors were on the ark? Yes, that’s right, one. We have a song we sing that tells us about that door:

One door and only one,
and yet it’s sides are two!
Inside and outside,
on which side are you?

One door and only one,
and yet it’s sides are two!
I’m on the inside,
On which side are you?

You see, boys and girls, that door on Noah’s ark is a picture of the one way, or door to God. The only door to God is through Jesus! Jesus said in John 10:9 “I am the Door; by me, if anyone enter in, he shall be saved!” Just like the only way to be saved from the flood was to enter into the door of the ark, the only way to be saved from our sin is to enter the Door, Jesus! He is the Door to Heaven!

THAT is the promise that God wanted to show us! That if we would just choose to enter in the door of Jesus, we would be saved and be right with God, like Noah was.

How do you enter in the Door, Jesus? By being sorry for your sins, and asking Jesus to forgive you and take your sins away, and by believing that Jesus died on the cross for your sins, and that He rose again from the dead.

Noah and his wife, their 3 sons, and their wives were all saved from the flood on board the ark. Two of every kind of animal (seven of some special ones) were all saved from the flood on board the ark. For 40 days and 40 nights the rain fell until all the Earth was completely flooded. The Bible tells us that the rain flooded the earth until it was 22 feet above the top of the highest mountain on Earth! It took a year for all the water to dry up enough for Noah and his family and the animals to be able to come off of the ark. When it was finally dry enough, God told them to come out of the ark. God also gave them a sign of another promise he made. The sign was the first rainbow! God’s other promise was that He would never again destroy the whole earth with a flood. Every time we see a rainbow, we can think of that promise. But, we should also be reminded that the whole story of Noah’s ark is a promise to us that God loves us, and has made a way for us to be right with Him. That way is through God’s Perfect Son, Jesus. Jesus shed His blood and died on the cross for us, came alive 3 days later, and wants to take away our sins and come into our hearts. But, just like the people of Noah’s day, we have to make the choice if we are going to go through The Door.

I’m on the inside,
On which side are you?