Shabbat shalom, mishpocah! Well, we’re getting ready to do the second Torah portion! Getting things started, we see that, by the time we reach Genesis 6, we've already seen the Creation and the downfall and destruction of a lost mankind. Noah, in YHWH's eyes, was the only righteous man on Earth; someone who did everything YHWH asked him to do. And so it is no surprise that Noah and his family were the ONLY people who were saved from destruction (Genesis 6:9-22) - for Noah was a righteous man:
Genesis 6: 9 Here is the history of Noach. In his generation, Noach was a man righteous and wholehearted; Noach walked with God.
What powerful words! Noah was RIGHTEOUS and WHOLEHEARTED before YHWH! Being "righteous" means more than just "believing" in God; it means to believe, hear, obey and do.
Surely there were others on earth who "believed" but they were destroyed because they didn't bother adhering to YHWH's Torah - His "Divine Instructions in Righteousness." We see examples of how Noah obeyed when he sacrificed CLEAN animals to YHWH in Genesis 8:20. How did he know to offer CLEAN animals? He came from the "good" line of Abel and Enosh whose descendants called on the Name of YHWH (Genesis 4 and 5).
Note also that Noach was not a Jew. There were no Jews until Jacob had one of his 12 sons whom he named Yehudah (Judah) where the term "Jew" originated. Noach wasn't even a Hebrew as nobody was considered Hebrew (Heb: "to cross over") until Genesis 12:1 when Abram (who was later renamed Abraham) accepted and obeyed YHWH and "crossed over" physically and spiritually into the land YHWH showed him, when he became the first Patriarch and Torah obedient follower of YHWH.
Yet Noach, back in Genesis 6 (like Cain and Abel in Genesis 4) was Torah observant - which reveals that one does NOT have to "be Jewish" in order to obey His Divine Instructions! (This fact is also revealed in the "New Testament, when read in context.)
For more, please read our synopsis of this week’s Torah portion and be sure to do all the readings. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!