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Ge 8:1-14. ASSUAGING OF THE WATERS.
1. And God remembered Noah--The divine purpose in this awful
dispensation had been accomplished, and the world had undergone those
changes necessary to fit it for becoming the residence of man under a
new economy of Providence.
4. seventh month--of the year--not of the flood--which lasted
only five months.
6. at the end of forty days--It is easy to imagine the ardent longing Noah and his family must have felt to enjoy again the sight of land as well as breathe the fresh air; and it was perfectly consistent with faith and patience to make inquiries whether the earth was yet ready.
7. And he sent forth a raven--The smell of carrion would allure it to remain if the earth were in a habitable state. But it kept hovering about the spot, and, being a solitary bird, probably perched on the covering.
10. again he sent forth the dove--Her flight, judging by the time she was abroad, was pursued to a great distance, and the newly plucked olive leaf, she no doubt by supernatural impulse brought in her bill, afforded a welcome proof that the declivities of the hills were clear.
12. he . . . sent forth the dove: which returned not
. . . any more--In these results, we perceive a wisdom
and prudence far superior to the inspiration of instinct--we discern
the agency of God guiding all the movements of this bird for the
instruction of Noah, and reviving the hopes of his household.
13, 14. Noah removed the covering of the ark--probably only as much of it as would afford him a prospect of the earth around. Yet for about two months he never stirred from his appointed abode till he had received the express permission of God. We should watch the leading of Providence to direct us in every step of the journey of life.
Ge 8:15-22. DEPARTURE FROM THE ARK.
15, 16. And God spake . . . Go forth--They went forth in the most orderly manner--the human occupants first, then each species "after their kinds" [Ge 8:19], literally, "according to their families," implying that there had been an increase in the ark.
20. Noah builded an altar--literally, "a high place"--probably a
mound of earth, on which a sacrifice was offered. There is something
exceedingly beautiful and interesting to know that the first care of
this devout patriarch was to return thanks for the signal instance of
mercy and goodness which he and his family had experienced.
21. And the Lord smelled a sweet savour--The sacrifice offered
by a righteous man like Noah in faith was acceptable as the most
22. While the earth remaineth--The consummation, as intimated in 2Pe 3:7, does not frustrate a promise which held good only during the continuance of that system. There will be no flood between this and that day, when the earth therein shall be burnt up [CHALMERS].