OUTSIDE the ark, the people went about their life the same as before. They still did not believe that the Flood would come. They must have laughed more than ever. But they soon stopped laughing. All of a sudden Water began to fall. It poured down from the sky as when you pour water from a bucket. “Noah had been right!” They told each other. But it was too late now for anybody else to get into the ark. The door had been closed tight by God.

Soon all the low ground was covered. The Water became like big rivers. It pushed over trees and rolled around big stones, and made a lot of noise. The people were afraid. They climbed up to higher ground. Oh, how they wished they had listened to Noah and gotten into the ark when the door was still open for them! But now it was too late. The water kept getting higher and higher. For 40 days and 40 nights the water poured out of the sky. It rose up the sides of the mountains, and soon even the tallest mountains were covered. So just as God had said, all the people and animals outside the ark died. But everyone inside was safe.

God now made a wind blow, and the waters of the flood began to go down. Five months later the ark came to rest on the top of a mountain. Many more days passed, and those inside the ark could look out and see the tops of the mountains. The waters kept on going down and down. Then Noah let a black bird called a raven out of the ark. It would fly away for a while and then it would come back, because it could not find a good place to land. It kept doing this and each time it returned, it would rest on the ark.

Noah wanted to see if the waters had run off the earth, so next he sent a dove out of the ark. But the dove came back too because it did not find a place to stay. Noah sent it out a second time, and it brought back an olive leaf in its beak. So Noah knew that the waters had gone down. Noah sent out the dove a third time, and finally it found a dry place to live.

God now spoke to Noah. He said: ‘Go out of the ark. Take your Whole family and the animals with you.’ They had been inside the ark for more than a whole year. So we can just imagine how happy they all were to be outside again and to be alive!

Genesis 7:10-24; 8:1-17; 1 Peter 3:19, 20.

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