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Bible Commentaries
Genesis 6

Everett's Study Notes on the Holy ScripturesEverett's Study Notes

Verses 1-8

The Genealogy of Adam The second genealogy found in the book of Genesis is entitled “The Genealogy of Adam” (Genesis 5:1 to Genesis 6:8), which emphasizes the fact that God preserved for Himself a righteous seed in Noah (Genesis 5:1-32) while mankind in general became exceedingly wicked until God repented that He had made man as a part of His creation (Genesis 6:1-8). Hebrews 11:5-6 reveals the central message of this genealogy that stirs our faith in God when it describes Enoch’s translation into Heaven and his acceptance by God. Adam’s destiny, whose name simply means “mankind,” was to begin the multiplication of mankind, which divine commission is seen in Genesis 5:2, “Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.” Of course, God’s plan was for Adam to produce a godly offspring. Thus, we see in the genealogy of Adam this seed of righteous men whom he fathered (Genesis 5:1-32), in which the author of Hebrews particularly Enoch as a fulfillment of this divine commission, who walked with God (Hebrews 11:5), and which list in Genesis closes with Noah, another blessed man (Genesis 5:29-32). Adam’s genealogy also reveals that many other people were born during this time-period who became exceedingly wicked (Genesis 6:1-8), particularly from the seed of Cain; however, this list emphasizes the fulfillment of God’s divine commission to bless Adam and his offspring, who were to father righteous offspring. Thus, the fulfillment of Adam’s genealogy is found in the man Noah, whom God would use to repopulate the earth after destroying all of mankind for their wickedness. In a sense, we have to look far down the generations to see how Adam fulfilled his destiny in the man Noah, so that Adam succeeded in populating the earth with a righteous seed.

Outline Here is a proposed outline:

1. The Descendants of Adam Genesis 5:1-32

2. The Depravity of Mankind Genesis 6:1-8

Verses 1-22

Ten Genealogies (Calling) - The Genealogies of Righteous Men and their Divine Callings (To Be Fruitful and Multiply) - The ten genealogies found within the book of Genesis are structured in a way that traces the seed of righteousness from Adam to Noah to Shem to Abraham to Isaac and to Jacob and the seventy souls that followed him down into Egypt. The book of Genesis closes with the story of the preservation of these seventy souls, leading us into the book of Exodus where we see the creation of the nation of Israel while in Egyptian bondage, which nation of righteousness God will use to be a witness to all nations on earth in His plan of redemption. Thus, we see how the book of Genesis concludes with the origin of the nation of Israel while its first eleven chapters reveal that the God of Israel is in fact that God of all nations and all creation.

The genealogies of the six righteous men in Genesis (Adam, Noah, Shem, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob) are the emphasis in this first book of the Old Testament, with each of their narrative stories opening with a divine commission from God to these men, and closing with the fulfillment of prophetic words concerning the divine commissions. This structure suggests that the author of the book of Genesis wrote under the office of the prophet in that a prophecy is given and fulfilled within each of the genealogies of these six primary patriarchs. Furthermore, all the books of the Old Testament were written by men of God who moved in the office of the prophet, which includes the book of Genesis. We find a reference to the fulfillment of these divine commissions by the patriarchs in Hebrews 11:1-40. The underlying theme of the Holy Scriptures is God’s plan of redemption for mankind. Thus, the book of Genesis places emphasis upon these men of righteousness because of the role that they play in this divine plan as they fulfilled their divine commissions. This explains why the genealogies of Ishmael (Genesis 25:12-18) and of Esau (Genesis 36:1-43) are relatively brief, because God does not discuss the destinies of these two men in the book of Genesis. These two men were not men of righteousness, for they missed their destinies because of sin. Ishmael persecuted Isaac and Esau sold his birthright. However, it helps us to understand that God has blessed Ishmael and Esau because of Abraham although the seed of the Messiah and our redemption does not pass through their lineage. Prophecies were given to Ishmael and Esau by their fathers, and their genealogies testify to the fulfillment of these prophecies. There were six righteous men did fulfill their destinies in order to preserve a righteous seed so that God could create a righteous nation from the fruit of their loins. Illustration As a young schoolchild learning to read, I would check out biographies of famous men from the library, take them home and read them as a part of class assignments. The lives of these men stirred me up and placed a desire within me to accomplish something great for mankind as did these men. In like manner, the patriarchs of the genealogies in Genesis are designed to stir up our faith in God and encourage us to walk in their footsteps in obedience to God.

The first five genealogies in the book of Genesis bring redemptive history to the place of identifying seventy nations listed in the Table of Nations. The next five genealogies focus upon the origin of the nation of Israel and its patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

There is much more history and events that took place surrounding these individuals emphasized in the book of Genesis, which can be found in other ancient Jewish writings, such as The Book of Jubilees. However, the Holy Scriptures and the book of Genesis focus upon the particular events that shaped God’s plan of redemption through the procreation of men of righteousness. Thus, it was unnecessary to include many of these historical events that were irrelevant to God’s plan of redemption.

In addition, if we see that the ten genealogies contained within the book of Genesis show to us the seed of righteousness that God has preserved in order to fulfill His promise that the “seed of woman” would bruise the serpent’s head in Genesis 3:15, then we must understand that each of these men of righteousness had a particular calling, destiny, and purpose for their lives. We can find within each of these genealogies the destiny of each of these men of God, for each one of them fulfilled their destiny. These individual destinies are mentioned at the beginning of each of their genealogies.

It is important for us to search these passages of Scripture and learn how each of these men fulfilled their destiny in order that we can better understand that God has a destiny and a purpose for each of His children as He continues to work out His divine plan of redemption among the children of men. This means that He has a destiny for you and me. Thus, these stories will show us how other men fulfilled their destinies and help us learn how to fulfill our destiny. The fact that there are ten callings in the book of Genesis, and since the number “10” represents the concept of countless, many, or numerous, we should understand that God calls out men in each subsequent generation until God’s plan of redemption is complete.

We can even examine the meanings of each of their names in order to determine their destiny, which was determined for them from a child. Adam’s name means “ruddy, i.e. a human being” ( Strong), for it was his destiny to begin the human race. Noah’s name means, “rest” ( Strong). His destiny was to build the ark and save a remnant of mankind so that God could restore peace and rest to the fallen human race. God changed Abram’s name to Abraham, meaning, “father of a multitude” ( Strong), because his destiny was to live in the land of Canaan and believe God for a son of promise so that his seed would become fruitful and multiply and take dominion over the earth. Isaac’s name means, “laughter” ( Strong) because he was the child of promise. His destiny was to father two nations, believing that the elder would serve the younger. Isaac overcame the obstacles that hindered the possession of the land, such as barrenness and the threat of his enemies in order to father two nations, Israel and Esau. Jacob’s name was changed to Israel, which means “he will rule as God” ( Strong), because of his ability to prevail over his brother Esau and receive his father’s blessings, and because he prevailed over the angel in order to preserve his posterity, which was the procreation of twelve sons who later multiplied into the twelve tribes of Israel. Thus, his ability to prevail against all odds and father twelve righteous seeds earned him his name as one who prevailed with God’s plan of being fruitful and multiplying seeds of righteousness.

In order for God’s plan to be fulfilled in each of the lives of these patriarchs, they were commanded to be fruitful and multiply. It was God’s plan that the fruit of each man was to be a godly seed, a seed of righteousness. It was because of the Fall that unrighteous seed was produced. This ungodly offspring was not then nor is it today God’s plan for mankind.

Outline Here is a proposed outline:

1. The Generation of the Heavens and the Earth Genesis 2:4 to Genesis 4:26

a) The Creation of Man Genesis 2:4-25

b) The Fall Genesis 3:1-24

c) Cain and Abel Genesis 4:1-26

2. The Generation of Adam Genesis 5:1 to Genesis 6:8

3. The Generation of Noah Genesis 6:9 to Genesis 9:29

4. The Generation of the Sons of Noah Genesis 10:1 to Genesis 11:9

5. The Generation of Shem Genesis 11:10-26

6. The Generation of Terah (& Abraham) Genesis 11:27 to Genesis 25:11

7. The Generation Ishmael Genesis 25:12-18

8. The Generation of Isaac Genesis 25:19 to Genesis 35:29

9. The Generation of Esau Genesis 36:1-43

10. The Generation of Jacob Genesis 37:1 to Genesis 50:26

Verses 9-22

The Genealogy of Noah The third genealogy in the book of Genesis is entitled “The Genealogy of Noah” (Genesis 6:9 to Genesis 9:29), which gives us the account of the Noah’s fulfillment of the divine commission to be fruitful and multiply. Hebrews 11:7 reveals the central message in this genealogy that stirs our faith in God when it describes Noah’s obedience to God in building the ark. Noah’s destiny, whose name means “rest,” was to be fruitful and bear a righteous offspring. His genealogy opens with a divine commission to build the ark and save a remnant of mankind so that God could restore peace and rest to the fallen human race. Immediately after the Flood, Noah built an altar and God spoke to him and commanded him to “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” (Genesis 9:1). Hebrews 11:7 tells us how Noah fulfilled his divine commission by building the ark and saving his household.

Hebrews 11:7, “By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.”

Outline Here is a proposed outline:

1. The Lord Commands Noah Genesis 6:9-22

2. The Destruction of the Flood Genesis 7:1-24

3. Noah and His Family Leave the Ark Genesis 8:1-22

4. Be Fruitful and Multiply Genesis 9:1-7

5. God’s Covenant with Noah Genesis 9:8-17

6. Noah Curses Canaan Genesis 9:18-27

7. Conclusion to the Genealogy of Noah Genesis 9:28-29

The Story of the Flood Within the genealogy of Noah we find the lengthy story of the Flood, by which God destroyed the earth. Jesus tells us that the story of the Flood reveals parallel events that will take place in the end times (Matthew 24:37-39).

Matthew 24:37-39, “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.”

The rapture of Enoch (Genesis 5:24) could parallel the rapture of the spirit-filled saints, which takes place immediately before the Great Tribulation. The building of the ark could parallel the propitiation of Christ Jesus and His office of the High Priest, which will deliver many during the time of the Great Tribulation. ( Strong says that the Hebrew word “pitch” ( כָּפַר ) (H3722) in Genesis 6:14 means, “to cover, purge, make an atonement, make reconciliation, [cover over with] pitch.”) Also, in the Scripture forty days represents a time of tribulation. Thus, the forty days of rain could represent the seven-year Tribulation Period. The one-year that Noah rested in the ark could represent the thousand-year Millennial Reign of Christ on earth (compare Genesis 7:11 to Genesis 8:13). Noah’s disembarkment from the ark and God’s renewal of His covenant with Noah and the earth could represent our entrance into eternity with the creation of a new heaven and a new earth under a similar renewal of covenant.

The story of Noah’s Flood refers to three dates in the life of Noah. It refers to his age of five hundred (500) years old when he bore his three sons (Genesis 5:32), his age of six hundred (600) years old when he entered the ark (Genesis 7:11) and his age of six hundred and one (601) years old when he disembarked from the ark (Genesis 8:13). and of Jesus’ prophecies in Matthew 24-25 have a time of warning of God’s impending judgment, a time of judgment and the start of a new age. At the age of 500 he was a “preacher of righteous” warning others of God’s coming judgment. At the age of six hundred (600) the judgment of God came upon the earth. At the age of six hundred and one (601) the earth ended one age and entered into a new age for mankind. In a similar way, the disciples asked Jesus in Matthew 24:3 three questions regarding warning signs, judgment and restoration. They wanted to know the warning signs of the end of the age, the time when judgment comes and the time when Jesus comes to usher us into a new age.

Many scholars suggest that the statement in Matthew 24:34, which says, “This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled,” means that all of the events that Jesus predicted in Matthew 24-25 will take place within a man’s lifetime. If we find a parallel to this time frame in the story of Noah and the Flood, we know that he was “a preacher of righteousness” for one hundred and twenty (120) years according to Jewish tradition. Thus, it is possible that the signs and events of the end- times will last about one hundred and twenty (120) years and end with the Second Coming of Christ.

When God shut the door to the ark Noah did not know the day and hour that the flood would come. Noah knew the season of the coming of the Flood, but not the exact time. He was just being obedient. In the same way Jesus said, “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.” (Matthew 25:13)

Historical Evidence of the Flood Literally hundreds of accounts of a flood have been documented from every corner of the world. From North, Central and South America, Africa, Europe, the Near East as well as the Far East, historians have discovered some version of a flood in most of these societies. [122]

[122] Howard F. Vos, “Flood (Genesis),” International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, vol. 2 (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1982), 316-321; Mark Isaak, Flood Stores from Around the World, c1996-2002 [on-line]; accessed 14 March 2009; available from http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/flood-myths.html; Internet.

Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Genesis 6". Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghe/genesis-6.html. 2013.
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