Who built the ark?

 There are many talking points in the sedra Noah.

The story of the ark is a great children’s story.  The story of the flood has been interpreted by many archeologists and historians. The so-called indifference of Noah to his fellow human beings is a harsh criticism levelled against him and begs for someone to defend him. The prevalence of drunkenness and the implications of immoral conduct by his son Ham are not too different from present problems . The “cover up”by his sons Shem and Japhet is a tender example of family loyalty. The exposure of his weaknesses makes us only too aware of the weaknesses of our spiritual and political leaders as well as our own.


Nevertheless it is a tribute to Noah that the seven basic laws for all humans, as indicated in the covenant between Hashem and all human beings (Genesis 9), are known as the Noachide Laws.  These laws  traditionally are prohibitions of idolatry , blasphemy , bloodshed , sexual sins , theft and eating flesh taken from a living animal. They also include an injunction to establish a legal system.

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