Next on our journey through the Bible For Pop Culture Survival, we visit a marvelous man named Noah.
Wow. God bless you, Google. God bless you.
Oh, wait. Before we discuss Noah, we have to touch on Cain and Abel.
Cain and Abel were Adam and Eve's sons. Cain killed Abel.
That's really all you need to know/all I can remember. So in summary: God creates two people. They produce one child who lives past puberty.
Cut to Noah's time. Many people live on the earth, but God isn't too happy with how it's all worked out. I'm thinking it's because you left the Earth's colonization up to some dude who'd just killed his brother and that guy's mother, but whatever.
So Noah, his wife, and his grown children are surrounded by a bunch of sinners. I don't remember what it is they do that's so wrong. I imagine laying with pigs was somewhere in the mix, because God is seriously upset with these guys. So he tells Noah "My bad! Do over!" And he commands Noah to build an ark. Which, according to my childhood coloring books, looks like a giant, covered, wooden boat.
Noah has multiple grown children at this time. I know people used to breed young, but seriously this guy had to be up there, age-wise. He must have been the Clint Eastwood of his day, being all wrinkly but muscly at the same time. I mean, the man made an enormous boat. And do you know WHY I know it was enormous?
Because it had to fit a zillion animals. God only wants to wipe out those sinning humans, not the fuzzy creatures. So he tells Noah to gather every animal. All of them. Every single animal. Every disgusting spider, every kind of bear. Polar, brown, black, spectacled...wow, I really know too much about bears. Anyway, God was like, "yeah, just put two of each sex in there. Trust me, I did it with humans before. It'll work out." And as soon as Noah does this and closes the ark door, it starts raining.
There was a cartoon of this story that they used to show us as children, where this ragtag group of teens goes back in time to witness all the Bible stories. And this is the part in the Noah Cartoon that terrified me to my soul. Because it starts raining--AND HOW. This ain't no "sprinkle." This is Vengeful God Rain, people. So the flood waters rise scarily fast. And in the movie, the sinning dude who is making fun of Noah the whole time suddenly finds himself with water rising--rising--aaaaaand he's dead. And I am three and crying.
So Noah, his wife, his family, and two of every animal chill in the ark for forty days and forty nights. When the rain stops, Noah decides to find out what's going on outside the ark. I assume the smell of 40 days of manure from every animal in the world has gotten to his head a bit. Because, even though he looks out the window and sees nothing but water, he sends out a bird to check for land. I think a raven? Some kind of ugly bird no one cares about. And the bird never comes back, that bitch. So Noah waits a bit and then sends a dove. The dove brings back an olive branch. And so now both the dove and "extending the olive branch" stand for peace. Which...makes no sense to me. Shouldn't they stand for "dry land?" Yeah, you got me there. But no matter--Huzzah! There is land somewhere within a radius that the dove can fly! And...we have no idea which way the dove came from!....crap.
Eventually the rain water subsides, everyone leaves the ark and the earth is a lonely, wet place. It's cool, though, because God slams down a rainbow on everyone to prove that he'll never do that again. But after that picture I found for the beginning of the story...I don't know, maybe the rainbow has been destined for other meanings for a long time.