Ark – Type of Christ

Gen. 6:14-16 "Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch.  And this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty cubits.  A window shalt thou make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt thou finish it above; and the door of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof; with lower, second, and third stories shalt thou make it.

According to 1 Peter 3:20, 21 the ark along with water baptism are both figures of Christ: "Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.  The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:" The lesson above is that the ark and water baptism are both figures of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  However, a closer look at the passage in Genesis shows us that the ark is not only a figure of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, but it parallels Christ in many ways

The ark was made of gopher wood.  This is the only reference to gopher wood in all the scriptures.  Thus, the ark was made of a unique wood.  It was one of a kind.  This is like Christ in that he is one of a kind.  Certainly he had a human body, yet his body was different from any living today.  His body was without sin.  His birth was different from any living today.  He was born of a virgin.  He was conceived of the Holy Ghost.  He is both the Son of God and the Son of man.  In these things he is definitely unique just as gopher wood is unique. 

Next, the ark was sealed.  It was pitched within and without with pitch.  It was sealed so that the water would stay outside the ship and the people and animals within the ship would be preserved from the destruction of the flood.  This is similar to the preservation in Christ Jesus: Jude 1:1 "Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:" This speaks of a people being preserved in Jesus Christ.  Other verses that speak directly of a people being preserved are listed

    1.  Ps. 37:28  For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.

    2.  1 Th. 5:23  And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    3.  John 10:25-30 "Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.  But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.  My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.  I and my Father are one." 

The promise is that all that are given to Christ by the Father are preserved in Christ and shall never perish.

The ark was sealed with pitch.  Pitch is the sealant that seals the ark.  The Hebrew word is "kaphar" which means "to cover (spec. with bitumen); fig. to expiate or condone, to placate or cancel:--appease, make (an) atonement, cleanse, disannul, forgive, be merciful, pacify, pardon, to pitch, purge (away), put off, (make) reconcile (-liation)."  This multifaceted definition would also define the work of Christ which he accomplished on behalf of the elect by his blood atonement

"Rooms shalt thou make in the ark…"  Christ said in John 14:2, 3: "In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."  Whether the Lord was speaking of heavenly mansions or mansions here in time, I'll let others decide.  The fact is that there awaits the Lord's covenant people a prepared dwelling place that will be far more than suitable for each one.

"The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits."  Three hundred is the bible number associated with the subject of faith.  Everywhere the number three hundred is found in the scriptures the subject of faith is being discussed.  Oftentimes, people do not associate faith with Jesus Christ.  Yet, he is the perfect example of faith.  He was, is, and will be the perfect example of faithfulness to the covenant purpose of God

    1.  Matt. 1:21 "And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins."

    2.  John 6:37-39 "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.  For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.  And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day."

    3.  John 17:1-2 "These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him."

    4.  Rom. 3:22 "Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:"

    5.  Gal. 2:16 "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

    "The breadth of it fifty cubits…"  The number fifty in the scriptures is very closely associated with the bible subject of new beginnings.  We have the following new beginnings due to the work of Jesus Christ:

    1.  We, the elect of God, have a new beginning in judgment before God.  We were condemned in Adam and justified by Jesus Christ.  According to Rom. 8:33-34, "Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.  Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."

    2.  In Adam we died in trespasses and sins, whereas in Christ we have a spiritual new beginning in the new or spiritual birth:

        a.  John 3:3 "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."

        b.  John 3:5 "Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."

        c.  John 6:63 "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life."

    3.  In Adam, our bodies were consigned to return to the dust of the earth.  In the covenant work of Christ our bodies will be changed and fashioned like the glorious body of Christ: 1 Cor. 15:51-57 "Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.  O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?  The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."

"And the height of it thirty cubits."  The number thirty in the scriptures is associated with the subject of redemption.  Christ is the only redeemer of the elect:

    1.  Rom. 3:24 "Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:"

    2.  Rom. 8:23 "And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body."

    3.  1 Cor. 1:30 "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:"

    4.  Gal. 4:5 "To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons."

    5.  Eph. 1:7 "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;"

    6.  Eph. 1:14 "Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory."

    7.  Col. 1:14 "In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:"

    8.  Titus 2:14 "Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works."

    9.  Heb. 9:12 "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us."

    10. Heb. 9:15 "And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance." 

"A window shalt thou make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt thou finish it above…"  A single window brought the only source of light unto the ark.  The problem we and all mankind have is that we have one eye on the Lord and one eye on the world.  Our eye is not single, but we often have double vision.  Matt. 6:22: "The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light."  Jesus always looked to the Father and always did the will of the Father.  His eye was single and he had perfect light. 

"And the door of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof…"  Entrance to the ark was through the side.  Our entrance into heaven is through the pierced side of Christ:

    1.  John 19:34-37 "But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.  And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe.  For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken.  And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced."

    2.  Zec. 14:8 "And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be."

    3. Ex. 4:9 "And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe also these two signs, neither hearken unto thy voice, that thou shalt take of the water of the river, and pour it upon the dry land: and the water which thou takest out of the river shall become blood upon the dry land."

    4.  Ex. 7:19 "And the LORD spake unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and stretch out thine hand upon the waters of Egypt, upon their streams, upon their rivers, and upon their ponds, and upon all their pools of water, that they may become blood; and that there may be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood, and in vessels of stone."

For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

    5.  Lev. 14:6 "As for the living bird, he shall take it, and the cedar wood, and the scarlet, and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird that was killed over the running water:"

    6.  Lev. 14:51 "And he shall take the cedar wood, and the hyssop, and the scarlet, and the living bird, and dip them in the blood of the slain bird, and in the running water, and sprinkle the house seven times:"

    7.  Lev. 14:52 "And he shall cleanse the house with the blood of the bird, and with the running water, and with the living bird, and with the cedar wood, and with the hyssop, and with the scarlet:"

    8.  1 John 5:6 "This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth."

    9.  1 John 5:8 "And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one."

"With lower, second, and third stories shalt thou make it."  The ark was one ark with three stories.  We know that the Godhead is described for us in 1 John 5:7: "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."  It is said of Christ that in him dwelled the fullness of the Godhead: Col. 2:9 "For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily." 

In conclusion, we note that the word picture given to us of the ark in Genesis chapter 6 points us to the Lord Jesus Christ.