And now we begin to use the language of covenant.
Noah and his family, on account of his righteousness, get to enter the ark and escape the flood waters. The destruction will not be absolute, and not just for humanity – each creature in their kinds will also be preserved – ensuring that a male and female will be kept alive. The line is to be continued. God is not wiping the slate clean entirely, and he is certainly not starting from scratch. Instead there is a promise of continuation held in the safety of the ark – and the need for provision with every kind of food. There’s a thoroughness even within the limitedness of the ark.
The focus is on Noah’s obedience. We do not learn of his emotions. Noah did all that God asked of him – he was instrumental in God’s plan. But we do not get a colourful picture of Noah himself – no, God is the main character, the one who guides and leads, who commands and provides. God is the one whose emotions are seen, whose grief is noted.
This is a story of God’s pain and of God’s plan, his knowledge – seeing into the heart – and his provision, ensuring that life will indeed continue.