The world-wide flood and the saving of Noah and his family in an ark is an historical event (Gen 6-9). The Lord was grieved at the general wickedness of man. This widespread corruption is seen in the actions of Cain’s descendants (Gen. 4:17-24). In contrast, the descendants of Seth (Gen 4:25-5:32) give us a description of the church and her righteous-by-faith members. Like Noah, those who trust in God for salvation through the promise of the Savior are declared righteous and find favor with God.
Our Lord Jesus Christ warns us that that the destruction worked by the flood is a sign to warn us of God’s judgment upon unbelievers at the return of the Son of Man (Mt 24:36-39). Until that day comes, we see the Divine long-suffering and kindness of God in showing mercy(Isaiah 54:7-10), and inviting to salvation. Our Triune God is continuing to send out preachers to direct us, Noah’s descendants, to the water of Holy Baptism, which saves by uniting us with the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 3:18-22). Thus the account of the ark also comforts believers that “the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations” (2 Peter 2:4-10). The ark is a sign of God’s promised means of salvation through Jesus Christ.