Eternal One (to Noah): It’s time! Go into the ark now. Take your entire household with you, because I see that you are the only one in this generation who lives right before Me. Take the animals with you. Take seven pairs of all ritually acceptable animals, both the male and female; and take one pair of any animal that isn’t acceptable, both the male and female. And take seven pairs of the birds of the sky, too, also male and female, so that we can keep each kind alive on the earth. Seven days from now, I will send a massive rain to cover the earth. The rain will last 40 days and 40 nights, and every living thing I have made will be wiped off the face of the earth.
In distinguishing between animals that are ritually acceptable and unacceptable, God is anticipating the instructions He will give His people later regarding holiness and purity (Leviticus 11:1–47; Deuteronomy 14:4–20). Some animals are ritually acceptable for sacrifices, so they are suitable for food. Other animals are not to be offered to God or eaten. Ultimately, what enters human bodies matters to God; after all He made them.
Noah did everything the Eternal One asked him to do.
Noah was 600 years old when the flood waters swept over the earth. Noah and his wife, his sons and their wives, all went into the ark in order to escape the waters of the flood. Noah made sure to take along all of the animals (both ritually acceptable and unacceptable), the birds, and all the small creeping creatures in pairs by males and females, just as God had told him to do. They all went into the ark with him, two by two. After seven days, the rains began and waters flooded the earth.
On the 17th day of the 2nd month in Noah’s 600th year, all of the subterranean waters erupted from the depths of the earth and burst skyward, covering the land. The casements of the heavens cracked open, dousing heavy rains over the watery earth for 40 days and 40 nights.
On the same day, Noah, his wife, his sons (Shem, Ham, and Japheth), and his sons’ wives went into the ark, and all were secured within it. Inside the ark they had with them all sorts of wild animals, domesticated animals, small creeping creatures, and all kinds of birds, that is, every winged creature. All of them went along into the ark to Noah in pairs—all flesh into which God had breathed the breath of life. All those in the ark, males and females of all living flesh, went in just as God had told them to do. And the Eternal One shut them all in for the duration of the flood.
The deluge continued for 40 days on the earth. The waters kept rising until they lifted up the ark so it floated safely over the land; the torrent continued to swell and increase in momentum until the highest mountain peaks beneath the heavens were covered. In fact, the waters rose and pitched so forcefully over the earth that the mountain peaks disappeared beneath 22 feet of water. And all flesh that moved upon the earth died out—birds, domesticated animals, wild animals, all of the creatures that swarm over the earth, and all human beings. Everything and everyone on the dry land in which God had breathed the breath of life died. God wiped out every living thing from the face of the earth. Every creature He had made—humans, animals, creeping things, and birds—was wiped off the surface of the earth. Only Noah was left and those with him inside the ark. And the waters raged upon the earth for 150 days.