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God tells Noah to bring the animals again, but this time he specified seven pairs of each clean species and one pair of each unclean species.
Commentary: The Great Rabbi Ezekiel Bezekiel wrote,
“The Lord in his infinite foresight commanded Noah to bring seven pairs of each clean animal so that he might earn the Lord’s blessing by offering the additional pairs as holy sacrifices to His mercy.”
Sometimes, I have trouble keeping up with the Great Rabbi’s wisdom. He seems to be suggesting that God, who in His great mercy decided to kill everyone except Noah and family, might run low on mercy partway through the process and require some sacrifices to buck up His mercy again. Because of His infinite foresight, he knew that he would run out of mercy, so he commanded Noah to bring some extra animals to sacrifice for a mercy injection. It just sounds a little twisted to me. And why does God care whether the animals are clean?
All the animals that had been invited, clean and unclean alike, showed up at Noah’s place, and he put them on the boat along with his family. Then God opened up the wellsprings of the deep and the floodgates of heaven, and water flooded the earth for forty days and forty nights. The water surged up to 15 cubits and submerged all the mountains, which must not have been very tall in the old days. Every living creature on earth except for the fish and Noah’s passengers drowned. (No mention of the plants.)