Before the Flood
I find Noach to be a very interesting and puzzling person.
Here’s how the Torah describes him (Judaic Press translation):
You can’t get much better than that. Even if our Sages argue whether Noach would have been considered a great man in a different generation, this is still very high praise. Let’s face it, most of us would be very happy to know that God thinks this highly of us.
Later on we are told that Noach does what he is told to do:
At this point I understand Noach. He is a man who learns what God wants from him and he does it.
All of this occurred before the flood.
After the Flood
But, then the rain falls and the flood comes and destroys much of God’s creation. All of a sudden, Noach is doing things that he was not told to do.
6 And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark that he had made.
7 And he sent forth the raven, and it went out, back and forth until the waters dried up off the earth.
8 And he sent forth the dove from with him, to see whether the waters had abated from upon the surface of the earth.
God never told Noach to send out birds as scouts to see whether the flood waters were gone. God never told him to remove anything and look outside the ark.
Granted, Noach doesn’t leave the ark until God tells him to. In this he is still obedient and waiting for instruction.
What do you think? What happened to Noach that changed him so that he acted without waiting for instruction?
I’d like to hear your suggestions in the comments.
As I announced yesterday, I have room in my schedule to accept two or three tutoring clients.
If you agree that learning Torah is important in your life, then I’m going to ask you to check out my tutoring offer. Maybe this will be good for you or for someone you know. Does that seem fair enough?