Chapter 7 of Genesis opens with God telling Noah that He has seen Noah righteous, and for that reason Noah is to go into the Ark with his family. Because we know all righteousness is in Christ, it then becomes evident that Noah believed in the Promise of God regarding a Messiah, and lived accordingly, as God enabled him. We then see the directions God gave Noah concerning the animals: clean animals were to be taken on by sevens and unclean by twos. A note here is important: we tend to be very ethnocentric even in our science, thinking that the way WE classify animals in biology the THE way to do it. The Bible uses several methods of classification, and none of them are like ours! Here we have one simple method: clean and unclean. This, however, also involves the distinction between those animals with nephesh, or a soul (or unique personality) and those without. Those with nephesh which are land and air animals are those with 'the breath of life' and are the only ones directed onto the Ark. Another method of classification here is hinted at, and it is the main one of many older cultures: classification by locomotion. How did the animal move? Crawling, flying, swimming...? Later we will see that bats are thus classified with birds and whales are big fish. This is a perfectly fine way to classify animals. It is just not our current way. Another interesting note is that here we have reference to clean and unclean animals generations before Moses would be given the law. This gives us evidence, along with the mention of violence, evil, and murder in chapters 4 and 6, that God's basic law was already known by men, although it had not been codified yet. And so, seven days before the Flood starts, the animals start loading. It must have been quite a sight to the men standing around jeering, which they no doubt were. And God tells Noah before any of it starts that it will rain for forty days and forty nights, "and I will wipe from the face of the earth every living creature I have made." This phrase is often taken by those who challenge the Bible as proof that the Bible is false, for God must have saved the fish and insects, etc. But that challenge is simply taking a phrase out of context, as both before and after, it is clear that 'face of the earth' is exactly what is being indicated, not all life on earth. All land animals outside the Ark would be killed. The FACE of the earth would be denuded of life. And again we read that Noah obeyed the Lord completely. So at 600 years of age, Noah loads thousands of animals on a giant boat he has spent somewhere around a hundred years building and stocking, and gets his family on -- all with one drop of rain yet to fall. It was pure trust. After a week the loading was done. And then it started. Pay close attention to the order of the catastrophe. The FIRST thing that happened was an explosion out of the ground of waters. That means these waters had to have been under enormous pressure; and that means heat. I don't want to bring in a lot of extra-biblical material, but it might be interesting to some to note that there are, in the flood memories of several ancient cultures, also the memory that these waters were scalding hot and burned up everything. So we can infer two things without the Bible telling us specifically. First of all, these bursting waters would have brought up with them tons of soil and pulverized rock, shooting far into the air and coming down on people everywhere. And all of it was scalding hot. This heat in the water would mean that vast amounts would evaporate almost immediately and recycle within hours as torrents of rain. The vapor canopy was not needed for the rain, although there may have been one to add a layer of protection to the earth at one time. The steaming waters may also have helped punch holes in it or destroy it altogether, I don't know. But the Bible is clear that the main source of the water for the Flood was under the earth's crust. Was this a local flood? No way. If ALL the fountains of the great deep were broken up, that means some kind of critical temperature and pressure had been reached for some reason under the earth's crust, and the explosive power along the vent lines must have been incredible. This was far, far more than some kind of water overflow around the Black Sea area! And those exploding waters, like giant geyers of boiling mud and rock slamming thousands of feet into the sky, very probably upset the temperature balance of the atmosphere so that the 'windows of heaven' were indeed 'opened' and the recycling rains streamed down on earth for a full forty days and nights while water kept pouring out from under the crust of the earth, flooding everything. Genesis 7:18 tells us the waters 'increased greatly,' and that ALL the high hills under the WHOLE heaven were covered to a depth of more than 20 feet. "And all flesh died that moved upon the earth." There it is again. That specific statement regarding which life perished. It is repeated, for emphasis: "And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of catle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died." Only Noah and his family were left. And this chapter closes with the mention that the waters 'prevailed' upon the earth for 150 days. The indication here is that the Flood kept rising after the rains had finished. Once the earth was flooded and the initial pressure of the escaping waters released, the recycling of hot exploding waters would cease, so the rain itself only lasted 40 days and nights. But the waters continued to rise for another 110 days as the waters continued to pour out from the earth. What on earth could have been going through Noah's mind, with thousands of animals on board wit him, and water everywhere outside along with the total devastation of the only world he knew? And I sometimes wonder about his wife, his sons, and daughters-in-law. What must they have been thinking? No one could reassure them saying, "Hey, this is just like Noah and the Ark." They WERE Noah and the Ark!