Barring a Flood

 Parshas Noah

In the decades leading up to the Flood, mankind deteriorated corrupting its values. They took for themselves unnatural mates. Robbery was pervasive. The divine solution was flood the world with water and begin anew. This was a one time occurrence and Hashem promised Noah never to flood the world again symbolized by the rainbow.

Question One

Why was destruction through water the appropriate response? G-d has many weapons in his arsenal, why choose flooding.

Question Two

Why was man so intimidated by water that Noah was only prepared to rebuild the world after securing a treaty with G-d that never again would water destroy the entire planet?

Answer

On the third day of creation the Torah writes “let the water gather and the earth should be seen” meaning that originally water submerged the globe but by heavenly direction the water found its ways into valleys and trenches, forming lakes and oceans. Borders were now defined barring them entry.

When man overstepped his innate sense of propriety and willfully disregarded natural borders (by bestiality and homosexuality) the repercussion was releasing the restraints on the waters allowing them to flood the Earth. Noah was aware that civilization could descend and repeat its folly and was wary of rebuilding Earth. Hashem promised him never again would a flood wipe out the entire populated world. 

Noah is considered base for beginning to rebuild the world by planting a vineyard. This is readily understandable. Wine leads to the loosening of moral inhibitions, after witnessing the havoc wreaked by permissiveness of his generation, wine should not have been at the top of his list.

Lesson

The outside world attempts to flood our private lives, we must erect barriers controlling its influence on our lives.

Medrash

When Noach planted his vineyard, the Satan asked if Noach would tend this vineyard in partnership with him. Noach agreed. Satan then brought a ewe and slaughtered it over the vine.  He repeated the procedure with a lion, finishing with slaughtering a pig over the same vine.  Man “in his cups” can be compared to these three animals,  When he drinks one cup, he becomes humble and docile as a lamb. As he imbibes two cups man acts arrogant as a lion. With three or more drinks, he will be like a pig, rolling and rooting in his own filth.  

Weekly Halacha

If one can doubt that flossing will cause bleeding, one may floss on Shabbos .

3 Comments

  1. Very nice.

    One question, was Noach’s hesitation to start over tied to the fact that water was used? Did he understand that the tides were pulled back and confined from their previous overflow on day 3 and therefore did not want to cause a reversal of this process a second time, or did he simply fear that the world could be destroyed any which-way and did not want to reconstruct civilization for naught?

    • Thank You
      By method of deduction we see that Noach was in fear of another flood. Hashem entered into a covenant with Noach, Rashi comments because Noach was fearful until Hashem guaranteed not to destroy the world. He further strengthened this resolve by providing a sign. Yet the verses describe the covenant and the sign as a promise that there will never be another flood. Noach is placated by this. We can safely assume that he was fearful of another deluge.

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