The Water Goes Down
1God did not forget about Noah and the animals with him in the boat. So God made a wind blow, and the water started going down. 2God stopped up the places where the water had been gushing out from under the earth. He also closed up the sky, and the rain stopped. 3For 150 days the water slowly went down. 4Then on the seventeenth day of the seventh month of the year, the boat came to rest somewhere in the Ararat mountains. 5The water kept going down, and the mountain tops could be seen on the first day of the tenth month.
6-7Forty days later Noah opened a window to send out a raven, but it kept flying around until the water had dried up. 8Noah wanted to find out if the water had gone down, so he sent out a dove. 9Deep water was still everywhere, and when the dove could not find a place to land, it flew back to the boat. Then Noah held out his hand and helped it back in.
10Seven days later Noah sent the dove out again. 11It returned in the evening, holding in its beak a green leaf from an olive tree. Noah knew the water was finally going down. 12He waited seven more days before sending the dove out again, and this time it did not return.
13Noah was now 601 years old. And by the first day of that year, almost all the water had gone away. Noah made an opening in the roof of the boat and saw that the ground was getting dry. 14By the twenty-seventh day of the second month, the earth was completely dry.
15God said to Noah, 16“You, your wife, your sons, and your daughters-in-law may now leave the boat. 17Let out the birds, animals, and reptiles, so they can mate and live all over the earth.” 18After Noah and his family had left the boat, 19the living creatures left in groups of their own kind.
The Lord's Promise for the Earth
20Noah built an altar where he could offer sacrifices to the Lord. Then he offered on the altar one of each kind of animal and bird that could be used for a sacrifice. 21The smell of the burning offering pleased the Lord, and he said:
Never again will I punish the earth for the sinful things its people do. All of them have evil thoughts from the time they are young, but I will never destroy everything that breathes, as I did this time.
22As long as the earth remains,
there will be planting
cold and heat;
winter and summer,
day and night.