Noah’s wife, Naamah, is rarely mentioned when discussing the events leading to the building of the Ark and the Flood. God needed a man for this assignment. There is no doubt that God used Noah to give mankind one last chance to repent before destroying the Earth. Undeniably, it would have been difficult for Noah to achieve what he did if Naamah did not walk in faith like her husband. 1
God, obviously, was Noah’s only source of direction in the “ark project”. It was from God that Noah received the plans for the ark (Gen 6:14) and it was from God that Noah got his calling to preach repentance
(2 Peter 2:5).1
Naamah’s contribution was that of a true helpmate. Her husband was given an unusual assignment by God. She had to have as much faith as Noah. Only her faith had to be in two; in God and her husband.1
She became the wife of a preacher and for one hundred and twenty years, while Noah and their sons were building the ark, her husband warned the people of God’s coming judgment. The Bible records that he had no converts in all that time.1
Crucial to Naamah’s faith was the fact that her eyes had to be fixed on the post flood world. She lived and raised her family in a world she knew was doomed for destruction. She had to teach Shem, Ham and Japheth to live differently from their friends and prepared them for the future world. She couldn’t allow herself or her family to become too attached to the temporary trappings around them.2
She prepared his meal and took care of the chores and household preparations for the day.3 Naamah encouraged her husband to do the Lord’s work during those long years of hardship and disappointment. Other than the Lord, if he couldn’t find encouragement with his wife, he wasn’t going to find it anywhere.1
“Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband” (Eph 5:33). The right man for the job will always need the supportive woman to strengthen and encourage him in his labors.1
Close Family 2
She must have fostered a very close family life. They had to be close because they had to move further and further away from the beliefs and practices of the people around them. They also had to prepare for a time when there wouldn’t be anyone else. During the long years of working and waiting, Naamah and Noah had the support of believing members of their wider family circle.
There was paternal grandfather Lamech (not to be confused with the Lamech in Genesis 4) who died five years before the Flood and was great grandfather of Methuselah(the oldest man who ever lived — 969 years) who survived till the year of the Flood. God had mercy on them in their old age and didn’t put them through the ordeal. Nor did He put babies or children or adolescents through it; He timed the arrival of offspring to fit in with His sovereign plan. Four married couples went through it — the senior pair to manage and the other three to multiply.
There must have been a sense in which Naamah was free from the bondage of other people’s opinions — free to obey God no matter what. She was the only believing female of her generation to board the Ark. There were only three in the next generation — the young women who became her son’s wives. They were to have an absolutely crucial place in human history. From their descendants all the nations of the earth originated
(Gen 10 and 11).
A Woman of Courage 2
What courage and determination she must have possessed to sustain her lonely position; to face the destruction of everything she knew. What spiritual strength would have been necessary to endure the hostility and ridicule? Nothing but sheer faith and obedience could have weathered the cries of those drowning. Great grace must have been granted for her to be shut in with seven others and many thousands of animals for more than a year. Only uncommon courage could face what she first viewed from the mountains of Ararat where the Ark lodged: the totally transformed world with its fossil reminders of death and destruction.
She must have been one of the greatest women who ever lived. It matters not that her name wasn’t recorded in the Bible. She impacted the world’s history for ever. She did it by being a godly wife and mother. She was married to an inspired man of God, who was used by God to save believers from physical death in the Flood and, therefore, the world’s population from extinction.
Her oldest son, Shem, was the ancestor of the Jews. From this nation came Jesus, the incarnate Creator and Savior. By His death on the Cross He gave salvation from spiritual death to all believers. He is the only One who can save us from everlasting destruction in Hell. He is the only One who can deliver us when our world is destroyed by fire (2 Peter 3:7). He has promised to come back and collect His own (2 Peter 3:4-10).
We can only imagine the coordination of preparing for the year voyage (Gen 8:13-14) and to organize the feeding and clothing of the family and any accommodations for the animals for their long journey ahead of them.3 Her contributions were not obvious, they were “behind the scenes”, but they were necessary.1
Over the years she had raised three boys, who were loyal to their father and, stood shoulder to shoulder with him in his important work on the Ark. She was, also, busy training her three daughters-in-law to be good helpmates, wives, and future mothers in the new world.1
After the Flood, there would be a brand new world to replenish. Her daily tasks may have not changed much but they took on a whole new meaning for her. And in laboring with her husband on the “Ark project” she was also laboring for the Lord. “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men”(Col 3:23). 1
Naamah suffered loss with her husband.1
Neighbors and friends did not believe his story about the rain and flood or God’s punishment for man’s sinful ways. In all those years of building and preaching, not one person believed her husband or trusted their God.
Everyone they knew were all lost in the Flood because of their stubbornness, their unbelief and their pride. Naamah shared her husband’s grief as they both suffered the loss of loved ones.
They may not have fully understood what God had in store for them in the future but one thing they did know was the world they lived in was so wicked that God wanted to destroy it. They knew God was good and God was just in His punishment on the world. They also knew that He would provide for them and make the new world habitable for them.
They left behind land, a home, and material possessions; only taking what they needed to survive. Everything else that tied them to the world that God now hated was left behind. But they were trading it all in for something better and lasting. What they lost in the pre-flood world would be multiplied in the new world and God would bless it. “And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life”(Mark 10:29-30).
Naamah left with her husband 1
She left behind one world for another on the voyage of her life. She had no idea where she was going or how long she would be on the Ark. How many times do we require, or even demand, to know from God our destination before we consider “packing” for the journey?
She could have decided she didn’t want to go. What was the sense of it all anyway? She could have stayed behind and “blended” back into the environment like Lot’s wife did.
Where does this kind of wicked thinking come from? The devil, obviously. And don’t think he didn’t try to change her mind. If he could make her doubt God’s plans, like he did with Eve, he could get Noah off-track too. Ladies, if the devil can’t get your husband he will come after you. Don’t ever forget that and remember the mistakes of Eve.
Naamah was given no guarantees by either her husband or God. All she had was a warning – “And, behold, I, even I, do bring a Flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die”(Gen 6:17.) and a promise – “But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee”. (Gen 6:18). That was all she needed; she left, with her husband, not knowing what the future would hold for her.
Did she have fears or doubts? Maybe. She did have a choice though. She chose to follow her husband. She trusted, believed, and loved him. Why? Because Noah trusted, believed, and loved God. He was her example.
“Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me” (Mark 10:21).
Naamah lived (survived) with her husband 1
She was one of only eight people who were saved. “Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water” (1 Peter 3:20). When she stepped off that Ark, after a year’s time, the world was a different place. She didn’t recognize it anymore. No doubt she was a different woman, too. She had been through a unique experience and we can only imagine it brought her closer to God and to her husband.
God had proved Himself. He did what He said He would do. Her husband had proved himself. He did what God told him to do and his family was saved just like God had promised. Naamah proved herself; all her doubts and fears and questions were washed away in the waters of the Flood. She stood by her husband and she was safe in God’s Will for her. “I am the door:by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture” (John 10:9).
The next step was obeying God’s command of replenishing the Earth. The Bible does not record that Naamah gave birth to any other children in the new world. It’s not improbable since Noah lived for another three hundred odd years after the Flood. But even if she didn’t, there was plenty to do in the line of gardening and also helping to raise the next generations. “And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth” (Gen 9:1).
Naamah was the ideal wife for a man with such an unusual commission. She stood by her husband in the time of his greatest trial. She endured the ridicule directed at them and encouraged Noah to continue. She believed in him when no one else would. She was a woman that was right with God and with her husband.
Examples of God’s Promises – Three Cycles God takes us through in response to receiving God’s promises made in faith.
Noah (Hebrews 11:7 and Gen 5:5 to Gen 8:22)
God wanted Noah to preach repentance to individuals who were corrupted from sin. He promised Noah that he and his family would be saved.
During that time, the people didn’t know about rain. The earth was surrounded by a ring of water in the ozone layer which created a “hot-house” effect on earth. Plant life was watered by the mist created in the cool evening.
Although the people were being warned that God would destroy them with a flood, they did not heed to the warnings. They did not live near a sea, nor did they know about rain.
When Noah began building the ark at God’s command, he built a vessel that wasn’t designed to sail anywhere unlike all other boats/ships. The Arks’ sole purpose was to house many animals and float.
Noah faced ridicule and rejection for 120 years. During this time, he could have given up on what might have seemed like a vain effort. Certainly no one was converted through his preaching.
God let it be known that there would be catastrophe brought about by His judgment on sin. Noah came from a lineage (Seth’s line) of righteous men (Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, Noah). Methuselah was grandfather of Noah and son of godly Enoch, who was caught up in Heaven. Noah’s wife, Naamah, was daughter of Enoch. (Jasher 5:15-16)
God sent the flood which destroyed all life on earth. The human race now would have as progenitor, Noah and his three sons: Shem, Ham and Japheth. Noah’s preaching and his faith was vindicated by God.
Naamah, Noah’s wife, was part of the promise given to Noah and would play a large role in the success of implementing God’s plan.
Naamah would endure disappointment, hardship, ridicule, loss, and rejection from people around her. She would have to stay firm in her faith and not bend to the pressure of time. She would have to dig deep into her soul and stay steadfast and strong in the Word of God.
She was able to see and experience one of the most miraculous worldwide devastation and the beginning of a new life on Earth. Because of her strong faith and assistance to her husband, her whole family was spared.