ChristiaNet MallWorld's Largest Christian MallChristian BlogsFree Bible QuizzesFree Ecards and Free Greeting CardsLoans, Debt, Business and Insurance Articles

How Long To Build The Ark

Why do people say it took 120 years to build the ark?Gen.5:32-"After Noah was 500 years old,he became the father of Shem,Ham,and Japheth."He was OVER 500 when they started.Gen.7:6-"Noah was 600 years old when the flood...came upon the earth."To me,that adds up to less than 100.

Join Our Christian Friendship and Take The Wisdom Bible Quiz
 ---Ann5758 on 7/28/05
     Helpful Blog Vote (28)

Reply to this BlogPost a New Blog



micah. Bloggers who see the impossibility of the 120 years to build the ark are correct. Noah begat sons after age of 500 for Shem is only 100, 2 yrs after flood (Gen. 11:10). Noah's sons had to reach marriage age and be able to help Noah.I am not aware of any ancient scholars who have suggested the 120 yrs refer to Adam but that does not mean there aren't any. Bullinger held his view long before it was published in the Companion Bible(1910). It fits the context perfectly when one realizes it was Adam's progeny in view (6:1,4)from the time of Cain onward (4:17). There are no other Scriptures supporting the 120 as the time it took to build the ark either. This is not a hill I would die on, but Bullinger's view makes more sense than any other.
---pastorman on 3/11/11


I can see how Bullinger could come to that conclusion, but it seems out of context.
Even more so when you take into account that Enoch, who walked with God, was born during Adam's 837th year and was translated 272 years after Adam died.
Is there any other scripture that supports this view? Any other scholar that held this view before 1910AD? Almost 4000 years before this revelation has been revealed? With all these other Hebrew and Greek scholars throughout the ages, they all missed it?..
Bullinger was just a man...
Meanwhile, I will study the Hebrew article associated with 'adam.
---micha9344 on 3/10/11


Duh! Of course you are correct micah. I meant before the flood not from creation. 1656-810 (Adam's age) = 846. Bullinger was the only Christian scholar who Ginsburg allowed to proofread his compilation of the massoretico-critical text of the Hebrew Massorah, The smaller commentary writing in the Hebrew text from the time of Ezra/Nehemiah. Ithink his view is correct. Note also 6:3 uses "he" and "his" not "they" and "their"
---pastorman on 3/10/11


846 years from creation Enoch was 14 years old, and Methuselah was 51 years yet to be born. I may misunderstand your remarks, pastorman.
Also, Adam did not always have the definate article, nor was man's missing. Unless you are saying that it has been translated incorrectly into Greek, Latin, and English by many scholars including Hebrews themselves throughout the thousands of years up to 1910 AD.
Cluny and char might have some interesting insight on this topic.
Very interesting.
---micha9344 on 3/9/11


I count 846 yrs from creation. 6:1-4 introduces the reason for the flood looking back from when men began to multiply to Adam at 810. E.W. Bullinger cir. 1910, "The Chronology having been brought up to Noah's days(5) now looks back(6)(not forward)" Bullinger is one from whom I learned Hebrew,"Adam, with the article ('eth) denotes the man Adam. It is very emphatic and means the very Adam as in 2:7" who had now become corrupt as others,"who else would be meant by the word also?" These verses do not indicate the time it took to build the ark. Other comments here are correct recognizing that the 120 years to build the ark is impossible considering the age of Shem who is stated to be 100 two years after the flood.
---pastorman on 3/9/11




They miscontexted Gen.6:3. Noah was 500 when he had his son Shem- Gen.5:32. Shem and his two brothers were adults about 20 years old when God told Noah to build the ark, for they already had wives- Gen.6:14,17,18. Noah and the family were on the ark for 1 year and 10 days- Gen.7:11-13+ Gen.8:13-18. Shem leaves the ark at 98 years old- Gen.11:10.
Shem was 97 when he entered the ark, because they were on the ark for 1 year and 10 days. And Shem was an adukt about 20 years old when God told Noah to build the ark, because he already had a wife. Therefore 97 minus 20, equals 77: It took about 77 years to build the ark.
---Eloy on 3/9/11


You do understand, pastorman, that Adam being 810 years old was 241 years before the birth of Noah and 841 years before the flood don't you?
The correlation between this passage, if it applies to Adam, and the surrounding passages seems out of context.
---micha9344 on 3/8/11


Pastorman, who taught you Hebrew? That is the silliest thing I ever heard. You made that up, I'm sure! :-)
---John.usa on 3/8/11


The 120 years of Gen. 6:3 have nothing to do with Noah or the ark. The Hebrew has the definite article before the word man. This means that it is Adam (Hb. for man) with whom God will strive no longer, for he "also" is flesh. But God will allow him, Adam, to live another 120 years. As he lived to be 930 we know that God makes this statement when Adam is 810. the word "man" is singular not plural. The word "also" is a further confirmation of this.
---pastorman on 3/8/11


The readers now see my point.
One can only assume that God told Noah to build the ark 120 years before the flood where scripture shows the birth of his sons in between 6:3 and when the command was given.
There is no prophecy about 'future' sons and wives in 6:18.
One must read too much into Gen 6:3 to answer 120 years.
---micha9344 on 1/16/11




120 years is most acurate.
Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

Abraham lived 145 years
Noah lived 950 years
Shem lived 500+ years
Arphaxad lived 400+ years
Eber lived 400+ years
Peleg lived 200+ years

My point is that 120 years was not a lifespan of man, it was the time which noah preached while beuilding the ark, and the spirit of God strived with them.
---francis on 1/16/11


Micha, I believe your answer is correct. I have enjoyed reading what everyone has put down. But what I have learned is that the Bible is never exact when it comes to numbers. When people were killed in the desert, it could have been plus or minus a few people. Same when the Angel of the Lord killed others. Exact numbers are rarely found, but enough is given for us to know many were killed. I believe the same holds true with some passages that speak of years. I don't see how it would make much difference to us now, but only to find fault in Scripture.
---Mark_V. on 1/16/11


People read too much into Gen 6:3. 120 years is least accurate.
---micha9344 on 1/15/11


The 120 Jubilee years x 50 = 6000 years. No more chance to be saved after this period ends, and it may have already ended, but I believe there are a few years left. The Shadow of this is no one over the age of twenty could enter the promise land in exodus.
---lamar_tucker on 1/15/11


120 years is most acurate.
it is the time limited by God to " strive" with men.
Now thus would have preached for 120 before the flood.
---francis on 1/15/11


Any number given by anyone is a guess. That includes my number also or especially
---francis on 1/14/11


Read These Insightful Articles About Franchises


Scripture show Noah was 500 years old and he had three sons. It does now tell us that they were triplets. Common sense will say that MRS NOAH did not have THREE boys in ONE year.
Most likely:
1: he had his last son when he was 500 years old.
2: he had three sons AND when he was 500 years old God commanded him to build the ark

Shem is 100 years old when he has his first child. So we have a MINIMUM of 98 years of building

Our best guess is to say 120 years. Which would mean that from the time noah started to build and preach, men wuld live as long as 120 years. Once the 120 years of preaching and building was done, the flood came.

God would only strive to save them for 120 years.
---francis on 1/14/11


99 years.

Noah was first mentioned in the bible at the noted age of 500 and entered the ark at 600.
---larry on 1/13/11


If Shem is born BEFORE Noah builds the ark them his baby is also born Before they enter the ark: NOT BIBLICAL
This is a false conclusion with no sound premises to support it.
Scripture clearly shows that the children were born, then God commanded, then Noah did accordingly...
---micha9344 on 1/13/11


Genesis 5:32 Noah was 500 years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Genesis 7:6 Noah was 600 years old when the flood came
Genesis 11:10 : Shem was 100 years old, and begat Arphaxad two years after the flood:
Genesis 9:28 Noah lived after the flood 350 years.
Genesis 9:29 Noah was 950 years and he died.

WHAT I KNOW:
1: Shem wife was not pregnant when they entered the ark,
2: Noah was already building the ark when shem ws born.
3: Shem was 98 years old when they entered the ark.

WHAT I DO NOT KNOW
How many years was noah already building the ark before Shem was born.
---francis on 1/12/11


Read These Insightful Articles About Lead Generation


Genesis 5:32 And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

Genesis 7:6 And Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth.

Shem's wife WAS NOT pregnant on the Ark?
So did noah start building the ark Before Shem was born?

Genesis 11:10 These are the generations of Shem: Shem was an hundred years old, and begat Arphaxad TWO YEARS AFTER THE FLOOD:

Lets figure this out together:
If Shem is born BEFORE Noah builds the ark them his baby is also born Before they enter the ark: NOT BIBLICAL
If Noah is 500 years old, and building the ark for maybe 23 years before sham is born: Possible if noah is already building the ark at age 500.
---francis on 1/12/11


Gen 6:10 And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Gen 6:14 Make thee an ark of gopher wood, rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch.
Gen 6:18 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 6:22 Thus did Noah, according to all that God commanded him, so did he.
---micha9344 on 1/12/11


It is possible that noah could have sarted building the arc BEFORE shem was born?
---francis on 1/12/11


Michael is correct. Shem entered when he was 97. And Noahs sons already had wives when God gave him the order to build the Ark (Gen 6:18).

Thats way less than 120 years.

---CraigA on 1/10/11


Send a Free Christmas Ecard


Francis said: Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

i say 120 years

If the bible is written for a third grader reading level, I would take this to mean:
His days are 100
and years is 20

or

20 Years 100 days
---Duane on 1/6/11


Amen. But did it take all 100 years to build or was it done prior to flood? At this time I agree with 100 years or less.
---scott on 6/17/10


Folks -- there is a lot of stuff obscured by tradition in interpretation. The translations and commentaries are not inspired by God. Stick to the Bible and try to use the original languages. Otherwise you will get hopelessly confused IMHO !!!
---Michael on 4/12/10

3. Shem had a son when he was 100 years old -- 2 years after the flood (Gen. 11:10). This means he was 97 when he entered the ark, for the flood lasted 1 year and 17 days (Gen. 8:14, note). It was impossible then for Noah to spend 120 years building the ark.
---michael on 4/12/10

Nice work Michael and some wisdom. You will never see many denom indoc'd posters here heed it. But, you may produce among the ones who never post but just read.
---Trav on 6/17/10


Not saying that 120 years in correct but there is absolutely no proof that it is wrong either
---francis on 6/11/10
Or right!
---michael_e on 6/14/10


Read These Insightful Articles About Mortgages


The 120 years is another traditional error, the same as how many of each animal did noah take on the ark, traditional answer is 2, wrong.
---michael_e on 6/10/10
Some answers can be BOTH traditional and correct.
Not saying that 120 years in correct but there is absolutely no proof that it is wrong either
---francis on 6/11/10


The 120 years is another traditional error, the same as how many of each animal did noah take on the ark, traditional answer is 2, wrong.
---michael_e on 6/10/10


Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

i say 120 years
---francis on 6/10/10


Pardon me, I'd like to share the grace i received with all the brothers and sisters in this blog. "The Genesis Genealogies, God's Administration in the History of Redemption" wrote the closest answer for this topic. It gave me a good understanding and good point of view about how God does the work of salvation through Noah, specially the book of Genesis. God Bless.
---yudie on 6/9/10


Read These Insightful Articles About Personal Loans


Gen 6:18-19 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. And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every [sort] shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep [them] alive with thee, they shall be male and female.
Did Noah have all the animals at this time?
If He did not have the animals when God said 'thou shalt', what makes you think his son's had wives when God says 'thou shalt'?
I agree from Gen 6:10 Noah had a wife and sons. I also agree that it was less than 100 years for the ark to be built.
In Gen 6:3, why should 'man' be translated 'adam' here and not the other 528 times as compared to the 13 times it is translated 'adam'?
---MIchael on 4/13/10


Also, "man" or "mankind" in this verse 6:3 should be translated "Adam" the man. If this is not the case then WHO is the "also" in this verse? So --- God says Adam has 120 years to repent. Adam is the only human created by God and Eve created from the man. So God says -- he is not special -- he can not live forever -- he will die in 120 years just like the other humans would die. Adam is also flesh -- like the other humans. Folks -- there is a lot of stuff obscured by tradition in interpretation. The translations and commentaries are not inspired by God. Stick to the Bible and try to use the original languages. Otherwise you will get hopelessly confused IMHO !!!
---Michael on 4/12/10


Noah took 120 years to build the ark? This could not be so because:
1. The Bible never mentions 120 years in connection with Noah, as is clear from Gen. 6:3.
2. It is clear from Gen. 6:18 that when God told Noah to build the ark, his sons (Shem, Ham, Japheth) were already grown and married (Gen. 7:7,13, 8:16,18)
3. Shem had a son when he was 100 years old -- 2 years after the flood (Gen. 11:10). This means he was 97 when he entered the ark, for the flood lasted 1 year and 17 days (Gen. 8:14, note). It was impossible then for Noah to spend 120 years building the ark.
---michael on 4/12/10


Why should we assume since Genesis 6:3 is listed after Gen 5:32 that it necessarily happened after Gen 5:32. Consider that all Gen 5 is a kind of genealogy. So if, God's decision to put an end to man had happened before Noah turned 500, should the Bible suddenly end the genealogy, write about the decision, and then return to the genealogy? Certainly God not only could have taken the decision before Noah was 500, but he also could have told Noah his decision before Noah was 500. AND Noah may have started construction before his sons were even born! Also, note that long after the flood, in Gen 11, people were living much longer than 120 years. I believe that Gen 6:3 is more likely referring to the period between God's decision and the flood event.
---Jim on 7/11/09


Read These Insightful Articles About Auto Insurance


Genesis 6:3 in the NLT reads: "Then the Lord said, My Spirit will not put up with humans for such a long time, for they are only mortal flesh. In the future, their normal lifespan will be no more than 120 years." It is a misconception to think it is saying how long God was giving the world to repent before the flood. It definitely has no correlation to how long it took Noah to build the ark either. In Genesis 5 we see men lived to be 800-900years old. The beginning of chapter 6, God simply says: 900 years is to long to put up with a mortal person. From now on, man's normal lifespan will be 120 years or less. That is why we don't have 900 year old men today. The truth: the Bible doesn't say how long it took Noah to build the ark.
---Andrew on 6/25/09


Genesis 6:3 "shall be an hundred and twenty years" is 120 years until the flood. By the Hebrew reckoning, 5:32 and 7:6, could be exactly 500 and 600 years, or rounded down to an even number. Noah could have been 480 in 6:3, or 620 in 7:6. Also, it is both possible that his he (and the wife) had triplets at around 500 years of age, or that his sons were not all born at the same time. They were all married at the time of the flood, but even without servants, or sons, Noah could have built a big box in only a few years. Probably, he had other work to do, and may have had to wait for supplies. His other job was as a preacher of righteousness which would have taken much of his time, 1Peter 3:18-20 & 2Peter 2:5.
---Glenn on 4/22/09


Wayne O, you wrote 'To God a 1000 yrs. is as a day & a day as a 1000 yrs.' This is from 2 Peter ch 3 and regards those who were scoffing about the fact that Jesus had not returned. Peter says God is outside of time,(in fact doesn't have days of any length), is not slow in keeping his promises but is giving time for 'everyone to come to repentance.'

---Warwick on 4/21/09


Consider this possibility: The Hebrew word translated as man should read "mankind". Is mankind still present today? Of course! When did Holy Spirit begin to deal/strive with people in general? ... since the day of Pentecost. To God a 1000 yrs. is as a day & a day as a 1000 yrs. Could He be refering to 120 Jubilee years (120 X 50 = 6000 yrs.) before the 1000 yr. millenial reign of Christ? The heart of man is just as rebellious now as before the flood. I think God was refering to the length of time He would allow man to run his own affairs before Christ comes to set things right not the time required to build the ark.
---Wayne_O on 4/19/09


Read These Insightful Articles About Holidays


The only place in Noah's story where it mentions 120 years is when God says,"My Spirit will not contend with man forever, for he is mortal, his days will be a hundred and twenty years. " (Gen. 6-3). Here, God is saying that from the point when He is talking, mankind will be destroyed in 120 years (He has to had said this when Noah was 480 yrs. old). THEN (around 20 years later), God gave the instructions to Noah to build the ark. So, the ark WAS built in under 100 years. People just jump to the conclusion that the 120 years refers to the ark construction.
---Cesar on 4/18/09


God gave the human race 120 and twenty years more time to: 1: Repent,
2: Give Noah enough time to build an finish the and indeed bring the animals along for the ride, becaused thses animals were directed and lead by God to the ark, from the ends of the Noah, while Noah was busy. So the 120 years is to be counted from the time God gave the warning to men to the time the perished in the flood, which by the way took just over one year to recede from the earth. Simple answer therefore, Noah built the ark in less than 120 and twenty years.

Your Brother in Christ.

Nick
---Nick on 3/2/09


I looked for a place that would ask this question. I think people read Genesis so quickly and come to the part "I shall not strive with men his days shall be 120"
They have just read that God spoke to Noah
and they know it is God preparing to tell Noah to build the Ark.
---Rodney on 1/1/08


i agree no more than 100 years
---micheal_gardner on 8/25/07


Read These Insightful Articles About Health Insurance


I must say that question on Noah made my mind go TILT, TILT. Finally I stopped looking at the question and put what I came up with in. It was late night time too. Thanks.>>>How about somemore of those. TILT,TILT.
---catherine on 7/22/07


It took Noah 120 years to build the ark as Genesis 6-3 suggests. He was 950 years old when He died. He lived 350 years after the flood. "I won't let my life giving breath remain in anyone forever. Noone will live for more than 120 years.>>>>The flood started in Nov. Flood lasted for 371 days.>>>Wickedness is then great when great men are wicked. Note>>All the sins of sinners are known to God the great judge.
---catherine on 7/22/07


It would have taken 75 years or less for Noah to build the Ark. Doing the math from Genesis 5:32, Genesis 11:10, age of boys at marriage, space between birth of sons and the flood chronology yields about 75 years for construction. God instructed Noah after his sons had wives. Noah could have been at least 525 at that point, or older.
---David on 7/21/07


what took 120 years was for noah to tell the world that it was going to rain. methuselah who's name means "when he dies it will come," died the year of the flood. who's father was enoch the man who walked into heaven, and God was grieved that he had made man, and said, he has a hundred and twenty years." your calculations do not provide that noah was or was not told a hundred and twenty years before the flood to tell the world about God's plan. it is irrelevant when his sons were born
---matthew on 8/1/05


Read These Insightful Articles About Christian Dating


Quite right Ann. Genesis 5:32 tells us that Noah had his sons 'after he was 500 years old, it doesn't give his exact age. Gen. 6:18 lets us know that his sons were adults when the floods came because they already had wives. Gen. 7:6 tells us that Noah was 600 when the floods came. It must have taken way under 100 years to build the ark.
---Paulette on 7/31/05


God in other places talks of children before they were born--promise made to Abraham and his children while he had none yet--Genesis 12:7, see also Hebrews 11:7-8. So this would not mean that they had to be born when the 120 years began. Keep the Bible verses coming--we do not want to believe anything contrary to what God has revealed.
---Wayne87 on 7/31/05


Ann from what you say I think you are absolutely correct. I am going to begin looking at the verses you mention and will come back on this later. Thanks for prompting the bible study. This happens regularly on CN.
---Paulette on 7/31/05


But I don't see where that 120 years had anything to do with building the ark. Noah was already 500 when his sons were born,but when God was first giving Noah instructions about the ark,He mentioned the sons & their wives, so they were all grown up by this time.And in the 600th yr of Noah's life, the floods came(Gen.7:11)- less than 100.
---Ann5758 on 7/30/05


Read These Insightful Articles About Health Treatments


Looking over the verses, I see no requirement that the 120 years (Genesis 6:3) had to begin after the three son's were born. Shem would have been born when Noah was about 502 since Shem was 100 two years after the flood--Genesis 11:10. Noah could easily have begun preaching and building the ark before the three sons were born. Look forward to any furthur verses that may shed light. The Bible often goes forward to a logical break, then returns to take up another thread.
---Wayne87 on 7/30/05


Ann, First I commend you for digging into the Word! I'm going to do more research on this, which will take some time, but I wanted to state that in the question about the Flood being Universal or Local, I'd assumed that a Biblical website I got some points from had a good reason for saying Noah had 120 years (the animals certainly had that long if there had been anywhere for them to escape to!); so maybe that's wrong! I WILL SAY MORE LATER.
---Daniel on 7/30/05


It seems he warned the people for 120 yrs but actually built it in 100 yrs.
---Pierr7958 on 7/29/05


Your right it did take Noah 100 years to build the ark. I think some people took the verse Gen 6:3. I don't know how they got the number 120.
---Rebecca_D on 7/28/05


Read These Insightful Articles About Affiliate Program


Copyright© 1996-2015 ChristiaNet®. All Rights Reserved.