Jason Soroski on Why Did Noah Use Gopher Wood to Build the Ark?

As the written documentation of God’s interaction with humanity, the Bible is filled with miraculous and amazing events. When considering the wonders of the Bible, the account of Noah and the Ark is always among the first that people think of. Everything about this passage is simply amazing: the flood, the animals, and the faithfulness of one man and his family amongst all the peoples of the earth. Yet one peculiar part of the passage is the material that Noah used to build the ark – gopher wood.  It turns out that the identity of the wood itself, not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible, remains a puzzle to be answered.

Where Is the Narrative of Noah’s Ark?

The narrative of ‘Noah and the Ark’ begins in Genesis 6 and continues through Genesis 9. It is here that we are first introduced to Noah as “a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God” (Genesis 6:9). What an amazing bio! I can only hope that people would say that about me! Noah’s story is without question one of the most amazing ever told.

As we seek to know why Noah used gopher wood to build the ark, the simple, and perhaps very obvious answer is this: God told him to. This doesn’t help us in determining exactly what gopher wood is, but it does remind us that as we study Scripture, we will not understand every detail. Some things are simply unknowable this side of eternity. The primary and most important thing to keep in mind is that even when we don’t understand, we can always see examples set by faithful people such as Noah, and respond when God calls us to follow him. As stated by Tony Evans, “obedience in the midst of evil should be the supreme goal and desire of God’s people” (The Tony Evans Bible commentary, p. 64).\

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SOURCE: Crosswalk, Jason Soroski