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Lesson 6:   “Noah … Prepared an Ark to the Saving of His House”   (See L6 Class Member Study Guide)


To help us desire to live worthily and avoid the evils of the world.

1. The people reject Noah’s call to repentance; Noah builds an ark.

• Read and discuss Moses 8:19–30 and Genesis 6:5–22; 7:1–10.  †1. President Joseph Fielding Smith

• Moses 8:20-24. What was the world like when the Lord called Noah to preach the gospel?

†2. Hugh Nibley

What similarities can you see between the people of Noah’s day and the people of our day?

How could they have avoided destruction?

How can listening to and following our prophets help us avoid spiritual and temporal destruction?

Hebrews 11:7. Why did Noah build the ark?†3. Elder W. Don Ladd

What can we do to protect ourselves and families spiritually?†4. Elder L. Tom Perry

How can we become more committed to preparing now?

†5. President Ezra Taft Benson  †6. Elder W. Don Ladd

What qualities did Noah demonstrate in building the ark?

How can we strengthen these qualities in ourselves?†7. President Spencer W. Kimball

2. The Lord cleanses the earth with a flood.

• Read and discuss Genesis 7:11–24; Genesis 8; and Genesis 9:8–17.

What “arks” do we have today that can help save us from the evil around us?

†8. Breck England

How can we help others find refuge in these arks?

• Genesis 8:8-12. He “sent forth a dove … so see if the waters were abated”.

• Genesis 8:20. What was the first thing Noah did after leaving the ark?

How can we show our gratitude to the Lord when he helps us through a difficult situation?

• Genesis 9:12-13, 16-17. What did God say the rainbow was to represent?

• Genesis 9:8-11, 15. What covenant did God Make with Noah?

(See also Joseph Smith Translation, Genesis 9:21–22, 24.)

3. The people build the tower of Babel.

• Read and discuss Genesis 11:1–9.

• Genesis 11:4. Why did the descendants of Noah decide to build a tower?†9. Neal J. Flinders

What do you think they wanted to accomplish by “making a name for themselves?

What is the difference between making a name for ourselves and taking upon us the name of Christ?

Mosiah 18:8-10. What responsibilities do we take upon ourselves when we bear the name of Christ?

• Genesis 11:5-9. What resulted from the attempt to build a tower to heaven?

Why can’t we reach heaven on our own or by human methods?

What is the Lord’s way for us to reach heaven?

Next Week: L7: The Abrahamic Covenant; See L7 Class Member Study Guide.

(You can download a free LDS Institute Manual at: Old Testament Manual: Religion 301 and 302.)

†1. President Joseph Fielding Smith: “Summarizing the facts – Joseph Smith revealed that Gabriel was Noah; Luke declared that it was the angel Gabriel who appeared to Zacharias and Mary; and the Lord has declared that Elias appeared to Zacharias and Joseph Smith. Therefore, Elias is Noah.” (Answers to Gospel Questions, 3:141)

†2. Hugh Nibley: “There comes a time when the general defilement of a society becomes so great that the rising generation is put under undue pressure and cannot be said to have a fair choice between the way of light and the way of darkness. When such a point is reached the cup of iniquity is full, and the established order that has passed the point of no return and neither can nor will change its ways must be removed physically and forcibly if necessary from the earth, whether by war, plague, famine, or upheavals of nature (Mormon 2:13-15)” (Collected Works of Hugh Nibley, Vol. 6, Part. 5, Ch. 11, p. 140; cited in Ted L. Gibbons, “Old Testament Lesson #6).

†3. Elder W. Don Ladd: “We all need to build a personal ark, to fortify ourselves against this rising tide of evil, to protect ourselves and our families against the floodwaters of iniquity around us. And we shouldn’t wait until it starts raining, but prepare in advance. This has been the message of all the prophets in this dispensation, including President Hunter, as well as the prophets of old.” (“Make Thee an Ark,” Ensign, Nov. 1994, 29)

†4. Elder L. Tom Perry: “Just as it is important to prepare ourselves spiritually, we must also prepare ourselves for our temporal needs. … We have been instructed for years to follow at least four requirements in preparing for that which is to come.

 “First, gain an adequate education. Learn a trade or a profession to enable you to obtain steady employment that will provide remuneration sufficient to care for yourself and your family. …

 “Second, live strictly within your income and save something for a rainy day. Incorporate in your lives the discipline of budgeting that which the Lord has blessed you with. As regularly as you pay your tithing, set aside an amount needed for future family requirements. …

 “Third, avoid excessive debt. Necessary debt should be incurred only after careful, thoughtful prayer and after obtaining the best possible advice. We need the discipline to stay well within our ability to pay. …

 “Fourth, acquire and store a reserve of food and supplies that will sustain life [if local laws permit such storage]. Obtain clothing and build a savings account on a sensible, well-planned basis that can serve well in times of emergency. As long as I can remember, we have been taught to prepare for the future and to obtain a year’s supply of necessities. I would guess that the years of plenty have almost universally caused us to set aside this counsel. I believe the time to disregard this counsel is over. With events in the world today, it must be considered with all seriousness” (”If Ye Are Prepared Ye Shall Not Fear,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 36).

†5. President Ezra Taft Benson: “The revelation to produce and store food may be as essential to our temporal welfare today as boarding the ark was to the people in the days of Noah” (“To the Fathers in Israel,” Ensign, Nov. 1987, 49).

†6. Elder W. Don Ladd: “When it starts raining, it is too late to begin building the ark. … We … need to listen to the Lord’s spokesmen. We need to calmly continue to move ahead and prepare for what will surely come. We need not panic or fear, for if we are prepared, spiritually and temporally, we and our families will survive any flood. Our arks will float on a sea of faith if our works have been steadily and surely preparing for the future” (“Make Thee an Ark,” Ensign, Nov. 1994, 29).

†7. President President W. Kimball: “As yet there was no evidence of rain and flood. His people mocked and called him a fool. His preaching fell on deaf ears. His warnings were considered irrational. There was no precedent, never had it been known that a deluge could cover the earth. How foolish to build an ark on dry ground with the sun shining and life moving forward as usual! But time ran out. The ark was finished. The floods came. The disobedient and rebellious were drowned. The miracle of the ark followed the faith manifested in its building” (Faith Precedes the Miracle [1972], 5-6).

Recommended Reading:

 1. Elder W. Don Ladd, “Make Thee an Ark,” Ensign, Nov. 1994, 29.

 2. Elder L. Tom Perry, “If Ye Are Prepared Ye Shall Not Fear,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 36.

 3. Ted L. Gibbons, “Old Testament Lesson #6: Noah … Prepared an Ark to the Saving of His House”. (This lesson material is rich in good ideas.)

†8. Breck England: “… In Noah’s ark, according to 1 Peter, ‘few, that is eight souls, were saved by water, the like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us.’[14] Thus the ark prefigured baptism as the means of salvation in Christ.

 “The ark is therefore a symbol of the Savior. Like the ark of Noah, Jesus Christ is our refuge in the storm, safely carrying us through the tempest and calming the anxious waters. The Church News has said, ‘As we go through the storms of life, our closeness to the Lord will, in a large measure, determine the peace and comfort and renewed strength that we feel.’[15]

 “The ark can also be likened to the temple, a celestial refuge in a telestial world. It was in the ark that the human family found salvation, and it is in the temple that our families find the means of exaltation. It’s important to note that Noah’s first action upon leaving the ark was to build an altar and offer sacrifice ‘in similitude of the sacrifice of the Only Begotten of the Father.‘[16]…” (Meridian Magazine, “OT Lesson 6: ‘Noah Prepared an Ark to the Saving of His House’”)

†9. Neil J. Flinders—Nimrod and His Tower

 “Nimrod, the biblical record reports, was the great grandson of Noah through Noah’s son Ham and grandson Cush. ‘And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth. He was a mighty hunter, … And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel’ (Genesis 10:8-10).

 “The Jewish historian Josephus indicates the descendents of Noah, once they became a numerous people, ‘were so ill instructed that they did not obey God’ (Jewish Antiquities, Chapter IV, 1). It was Nimrod, according to Josephus, who fostered and encouraged this disobedience and who taught the people not to acknowledge God or think they owed him anything. Nimrod promoted the philosophy that any happiness man might have he should ascribe unto himself and not think that God had anything to do with it. He also changed the form of government among the people into a tyranny that brought them ‘into a constant dependence on his [Nimrod’s] power’, because he could see ‘no other way of turning men from the fear of God' (Ibid., 2)

 “One of Nimrod’s projects to convince the people they could get along without God—that they were sufficient in their own power—was the building of his famous tower in Babel. Nimrod’s claim was that he would guide the people in building this tower so high it would be above any future flood; once it was built, he would personally ‘Avenge God for destroying their forefathers’ (Ibid., 2) Josephus adds, ‘Now the multitude were very ready to follow the determination of Nimrod, and to esteem it a piece of cowardice to submit to God; and they built a tower, neither sparing any pains, nor being in any degree negligent about the work’ (Ibid., 3; emphasis added).

 “Simply stated, the issue was: Does man need God, or can he go it alone? Nimrod himself seemed convinced not only that man could go it alone, but that God could be replaced. This aggressive position was fueled with a specific attitude that has since come to dominate many societies, including our own. The intimidating taunt in every corner and clime, from the sleazy side of societies to the ivied halls of academia, has been and still is: It’s a piece of cowardice to submit to God. (Neal J. Flinders, PhD., My Decision: An Act of Faith? or A Piece of Cowardice? 13-14.)

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