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Before God sent the worldwide Flood, He told Noah to build an Ark to keep himself and the animals safe. If God hadn't given Noah instructions on how to build the Ark, do you think Noah would have been able to build it big enough, safe enough, and as perfectly designed as it needed to be to survive the Flood? Take responses. Probably not! God is omniscient, which means He knows everything! He knew how Noah needed to build the Ark, how big it needed to be to hold all of the animals, and how it needed to be built to survive the Flood waters. God even knew exactly how long Noah and his family would be in the Ark.
So God gave Noah instructions on how to build the Ark. He told Noah it was to be made of gopher wood—300 cubits long, 50 cubits wide, and 30 cubits tall. These dimensions made the Ark six times longer than it was wide. And guess what? Modern shipbuilders still use those dimensions because they have discovered that they are the perfect dimensions for large boats, making them stable and seaworthy.
There were three levels in the Ark, with one window and a door on the side. God instructed Noah to coat the Ark with pitch, a substance that was like a sealer to keep water out.
By faith, Noah obeyed all of God’s directions. He built the Ark just as God said, and all those inside the Ark were safe from the Flood waters!
Today you're going to build your own boats, but unlike Noah, you will not be given any instructions. Using only a sheet of aluminum foil, your goal is to make a boat that will float. Once you see it float, test it by seeing how many glass gems it can hold and still stay afloat.
Give children time to create their boats and test them in the water. If children are struggling to create boats that will float, some help may be needed (particularly with younger children). By folding up the sides so it does not take on water, a simple boat can be formed. The kids can place glass gems, one at a time, in their boats to see how strong their boats are. (This is great fun!)
Your boats look great! Did everyone’s boat float? How many gems could your boat hold? Take responses. Noah was a righteous man; He loved God and wanted to obey God. Noah listened to God and built the Ark, following God’s instructions. Because of Noah’s obedience, he, his family, and all the animals on the Ark were safe from the Flood waters.
It's important for us to obey God’s commands, too. Our verse today tells us to “love God and keep His commandments.” God might not be giving us building plans, but what kind of commands does His Word have for us? Take responses: obey our parents, love our enemies, be kind to everyone, speak truth, etc. That’s right! We're told to obey Mom and Dad, to tell the truth, and to love our neighbors! If we are His children, we can ask God to help us obey Him through the power of His Holy Spirit.
If you aren't sure if you're one of God's children, that's a big deal. Make sure you talk to a leader today about it!
Pass out the Flood Legend card for today and remind children that the flood legends found around the world are remnants of the true account given in the Bible.