Genesis 8:20
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Then Noah built an altar to the LORD and took some of every clean animal and some of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

King James Bible
And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

American Standard Version
And Noah builded an altar unto Jehovah, and took of every clean beast, and of every clean bird, and offered burnt-offerings on the altar.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And Noe built an altar unto the Lord: and taking of all cattle and fowls that were clean, offered holocausts upon the altar.

English Revised Version
And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

Webster's Bible Translation
And Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt-offerings on the altar.

Genesis 8:20 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The first thing which Noah did, was to build an altar for burnt sacrifice, to thank the Lord for gracious protection, and pray for His mercy in time to come. This altar - מזבּח, lit., a place for the offering of slain animals, from זבח, like θυσιαστήριον from θύειν - is the first altar mentioned in history. The sons of Adam had built no altar for their offerings, because God was still present on the earth in paradise, so that they could turn their offerings and hearts towards that abode. But with the flood God had swept paradise away, withdrawn the place of His presence, and set up His throne in heaven, from which He would henceforth reveal Himself to man (cf. Genesis 9:5, Genesis 9:7). In future, therefore, the hearts of the pious had to be turned towards heaven, and their offerings and prayers needed to ascend on high if they were to reach the throne of God. To give this direction to their offerings, heights or elevated places were erected, from which they ascended towards heaven in fire. From this the offerings received the name of עלת from עולה, the ascending, not so much because the sacrificial animals ascended or were raised upon the altar, as because they rose from the altar to haven (cf. Judges 20:40; Jeremiah 48:15; Amos 4:10). Noah took his offerings from every clean beast and every clean fowl - from those animals, therefore, which were destined for man's food; probably the seventh of every kind, which he had taken into the ark. "And Jehovah smelled the smell of satisfaction," i.e., He graciously accepted the feelings of the offerer which rose to Him in the odour of the sacrificial flame. In the sacrificial flame the essence of the animal was resolved into vapour; so that when man presented a sacrifice in his own stead, his inmost being, his spirit, and his heart ascended to God in the vapour, and the sacrifice brought the feeling of his heart before God. This feeling of gratitude for gracious protection, and of desire for further communications of grace, was well-pleasing to God. He "said to His heart' (to, or in Himself; i.e., He resolved), "I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake, because the image (i.e., the thought and desire) of man's heart is evil from his youth up (i.e., from the very time when he begins to act with consciousness)." This hardly seems an appropriate reason. As Luther says: "Hic inconstantiae videtur Deus accusari posse. Supra puniturus hominem causam consilii dicit, quia figmentum cordis humani malum est. Hic promissurus homini gratiam, quod posthac tali ira uti nolit, eandem causam allegat." Both Luther and Calvin express the same thought, though without really solving the apparent discrepancy. It was not because the thoughts and desires of the human heart are evil that God would not smite any more every living thing, that is to say, would not exterminate it judicially; but because they are evil from his youth up, because evil is innate in man, and for that reason he needs the forbearance of God; and also (and here lies the principal motive for the divine resolution) because in the offering of the righteous Noah, not only were thanks presented for past protection, and entreaty for further care, but the desire of man was expressed, to remain in fellowship with God, and to procure the divine favour. "All the days of the earth;" i.e., so long as the earth shall continue, the regular alternation of day and night and of the seasons of the year, so indispensable to the continuance of the human race, would never be interrupted again.

Genesis 8:20 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

builded.

Genesis 4:4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect to Abel and to his offering:

Genesis 12:7,8 And the LORD appeared to Abram, and said, To your seed will I give this land: and there built he an altar to the LORD...

Genesis 13:4 To the place of the altar, which he had make there at the first: and there Abram called on the name of the LORD.

Genesis 22:9 And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order...

Genesis 26:25 And he built an altar there, and called on the name of the LORD, and pitched his tent there: and there Isaac's servants dig a well.

Genesis 33:20 And he erected there an altar, and called it EleloheIsrael.

Genesis 35:1,7 And God said to Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there: and make there an altar to God...

Exodus 20:24,25 An altar of earth you shall make to me, and shall sacrifice thereon your burnt offerings, and your peace offerings, your sheep...

Exodus 24:4-8 And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and built an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars...

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God...

Hebrews 13:10,15,16 We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle...

1 Peter 2:5,9 You also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices...

clean beast.

Genesis 7:2 Of every clean beast you shall take to you by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two...

Leviticus 11:1-47 And the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying to them...

burnt.

Leviticus 1:1-17 And the LORD called to Moses, and spoke to him out of the tabernacle of the congregation, saying...

Cross References
Genesis 7:2
Take with you seven pairs of all clean animals, the male and his mate, and a pair of the animals that are not clean, the male and his mate,

Genesis 8:19
Every beast, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out by families from the ark.

Genesis 12:7
Then the LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land." So he built there an altar to the LORD, who had appeared to him.

Genesis 12:8
From there he moved to the hill country on the east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. And there he built an altar to the LORD and called upon the name of the LORD.

Genesis 13:18
So Abram moved his tent and came and settled by the oaks of Mamre, which are at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the LORD.

Genesis 22:2
He said, "Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you."

Genesis 22:9
When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood.

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