1, 2. UNowa lemuli yakhe babesenza wuphi umsebenzi, futhi babehlutshwa yini ngesikhathi besebenza?

WONKE umzimba kaNowa usufutha. Ake umbone ngelihlo lengqondo eselula iqolo, ehlala phezu kwepulanka esithi ake akhokhe umoya esule lamaginqo. UNowa uyawuzwa lomsindo wamathuluzi uncencetha ezindlebeni zakhe lephunga lethara selithe nki yonke indawo njengoba ephakamisa amehlo ekhangela isizemazema somkhumbi abasakhayo. Nampaya labantwabakhe baphezu kwawo umsebenzi. Sekuleminyaka eminengi yena lomkakhe, abantwabakhe kanye labomkabo besebenza baze bajuluke izithukuthuku. Sebewutshovile sibili umsebenzi, kodwa kuseselomango.

2 Omakhelwana babo babecabanga ukuthi bayiziphukuphuku zokucina. Ngesikhathi sekukhanya ukuthi bafuna ukwakha into enjani, basebehleka baze baqamelane nxa besizwa ukuthi kulezulu elizakuna amanzi agcwale umhlaba wonke. UNowa kwakungathi uyawumana nxa ebaxwayisa ngomonakalo owawuzabehlela. Babengakuzwisisi ukuthi yindoda bani engaphongutshaphaza impilo yayo leyabantwabayo isenza amadlwane. Kodwa kuNkulunkulu, uNowa wayeyindoda emadodeni.

3. Kutshoni ukuthi uNowa wabambelela kuNkulunkulu?

3 IBhayibhili lithi uNowa “wabambelela kuNkulunkulu.” (Bala uGenesisi 6:9.) Kutshoni lokhu? Kutsho ukuthi uNowa walalela uNkulunkulu kukho konke ayekwenza njalo wamthanda ngenhliziyo yonke waze waba ngumngane wakhe. Kwathi sekudlule iminyaka eminengi kakhulu iLizwi likaNkulunkulu lathi: “Ngokukholwa kwakhe wawulahla umhlaba.” (Heb. 11:7) UNowa wakwenza njani lokhu? Indlela atshengisa ngayo ukuthi ulokholo ingasifundisani lamuhla?

Indoda Engelasici Emhlabeni Oxhwalileyo

4, 5. Ngesikhathi sikaNowa umhlaba wawusunjani?

4 Abantu basebevele sebebabi ngezinsuku zikakhokho kaNowa okwakuthiwa ngu-Enoki. Laye wayeyindoda elungileyo eyabambelela kuNkulunkulu. Wayephrofethe ukuthi abantu abangamesabiyo uNkulunkulu babezakwahlulelwa. Kodwa ngesikhathi uNowa ekhula, ububi  babantu babulokhu busiyaphambili. Abantu basebexhwale badlulisa amalawulo. Umhlaba wawusuxhwalile sibili phambi kukaJehova ngenxa yokuthi wawusugcwele udlakela. (Gen. 5:22; 6:11; Jud. 14, 15) Kwakutheni izinto zize zibe zimbi kangaka?

5 Kwakulenkemenkeme eyayenzakele emadodaneni kaNkulunkulu asezulwini, okutsho izingilosi. Enye yazo yayisihlamukile, yaba nguSathane uDeveli ngoba yayisinyundele uJehova uNkulunkulu futhi yahuga u-Adamu lo-Eva ukuthi bone. Ngesikhathi sikaNowa, ezinye izingilosi lazo zaqalisa ukuhlamukela uJehova. Zatshiya indawo yazo enhle ezaziyiphiwe nguNkulunkulu ezulwini zeza emhlabeni. Zafika zazintshintsha zaba lemizimba yabantu zasezithatha abesifazana abangamatshatshazi. Izingilosi lezo ezazizikhukhumeza lezazilobuhaga zafundisa usapho lwabantu ukuganga kuphela.—Gen. 6:1, 2; Jud. 6, 7.

6. AmaNefilimi enzani emhlabeni, njalo uJehova wazimisela ukwenzani?

6 Okunye okwakhwezela ububi lobu yiziqhwaga ezazilamandla esabekayo. Iziqhwaga lezi zazingabantwana bezingilosi ezimbi labesifazana basemhlabeni. IBhayibhili libabiza ngokuthi ngamaNefilimi okutsho ukuthi “Abawisi.” Babelesihluku esibi njalo bakhwezela ukuxhwala okwakuvele sekukhona emhlabeni. Yikho kungasimangalisi ukuthi uMdali wabona ukuthi “ukuxhwala kwabantu kwasekukukhulu kangakanani emhlabeni, njalo lokuthi zonke izinkanuko zeminakano yezinhliziyo zabo zaziyibubi kuphela sonke isikhathi.” UJehova wahle wazimisela ukuthi uzathanyela aqede bonke abantu abaxhwalileyo ngemva kweminyaka engu-120.—Bala uGenesisi 6:3-5.

7. Kuyini okwakusenza kube nzima ukuthi uNowa lomkakhe bavikele abantwababo ukuze bangaphanjaniswa yizigangi ezazikhona?

7 Akucabange ukuthi kwakunzima njani ukukhulisa abantwana endaweni enjalo. Kodwa uNowa waphumelela. Wathatha umfazi olungileyo. Wathi esephile iminyaka engu-500, yena lomkakhe baba labantwana  abathathu—uShemu, uHamu loJafethi. * Kwakumele bavikele abantwababo ukuze bangaphanjaniswa yizigangi ezazigcwele yonke indawo. AmaNefilimu ‘ayengamadoda endumela’ njalo ‘engamaqhawe’ kumbe iziqhwaga. Phela abafana uyabe usubaqambile ungabatshengisa amadoda anjalo. UNowa lomkakhe babengeke batshone bevale abafana babo amehlo lezindlebe ukuze bangathatheki ngemibiko yokuthi iziqhwaga lezi zazisenzani. Kodwa ababengakwenza yikubafundisa iqiniso ngoJehova, uNkulunkulu ozonda bonke ububi. Kwakumele bancedise abantwababo ukuthi bazwisise ukuthi uJehova uzwa ubuhlungu nxa ebona udlakela lokuhlamuka emhlabeni.—Gen. 6:6.

UNowa lomkakhe kwakumele bavikele abantwababo ukuze bangaphanjaniswa yizigangi

8. Abazali abahlakaniphileyo bangamlingisela njani uNowa lomkakhe?

8 Abazali abanengi lamuhla bayaluzwisisa uhlupho uNowa lomkakhe ababekulo. Umhlaba esiphila kuwo lawo ugcwele iziqoqodo lezinswelaboya. Amadolobho amanengi agcwele amaqembu abasakhulayo abagangileyo. Kanti njalo amafilimu lemidlalo eminengi yabantwana lakho sekugcwele udlakela. Abazali abahlakaniphileyo benza konke abangakwenza ukuze bavikele abantwababo ngokubafundisa ngoJehova uNkulunkulu wokuthula, ozaqeda udlakela ngelinye ilanga. (Hubo. 11:5; 37:10, 11) Abazali bangenelisa ukufundisa abantwababo ukuthi benze okulungileyo lanxa umhlaba umubi kangaka. UNowa lomkakhe baphumelela. Abantwababo bakhula baba ngamadoda alungileyo futhi bathatha amakhosikazi ayezimisele ukuqakathekisa ukwenza intando kaJehova uNkulunkulu weqiniso ukwedlula loba yini ezimpilweni zabo.

“Zakhele Umkhumbi”

9, 10. (a) Yiwuphi umlayo owawuvela kuJehova owantshintsha impilo kaNowa? (b) UJehova watshela uNowa ukuthi kwakumele awakhe njani umkhumbi futhi wathi wawungowani?

9 Ngelinye ilanga uNowa wezwa umlayo owantshintsha impilo yakhe. UJehova wayemthanda kakhulu uNowa njalo wamtshela ukuthi wayehlose ukubhubhisa abantu ababi. Yikho-ke wamnika umlayo lo othi: “Zakhele umkhumbi ngezigodo zesihlahla sokubaza.”—Gen. 6:14.

10 Abanye bacabanga ukuthi umkhumbi lo wawuyisikepe. Kodwa wawungafanani lesikepe ngoba wawungela laphini lokugwedla. Wawuyinkalakatha yebhokisi. UJehova watshela uNowa ukuthi ubude bomkhumbi lobubanzi kanye lokuphakama kwawo kwakumele kube nganani. Waphinda wamtshela ukuthi kwakumele wakhiwe njani lokuthi kwakumele awuhuqe ngenhlaka ngaphakathi langaphandle. Wamtshela lokuthi kungani kwakumele awakhe, wathi: ‘Ngizathumela uzamcolo wamanzi emhlabeni. Yonke into emhlabeni izabhubha.’ Kodwa uJehova wenza isivumelwano loNowa. Wathi: “Uzangena emkhunjini wena lamadodana akho lomkakho kanye labomalokazana bakho babe lawe.”  Okunye okwakumele akwenze yikungenisa yonke imihlobo yezinyamazana. Ababengasoze babulawe nguZamcolo yilabo kuphela ababezabe besemkhunjini.—Gen. 6:17-20.

UNowa lemuli yakhe babencedisana ukuze benze lokho uNkulunkulu ayebalaye khona

11, 12. UNowa wayelomsebenzi bani owawumkhulu, njalo wenzani?

11 UNowa wayelomsebenzi omkhulu sibili. Kwakumele akhe inkalakatha yomkhumbi. Wawungaba ngamamitha angu-133 ubude, angu-22 ububanzi njalo angu-13 ukuphakama. Wawumkhulu kulenkundla yokudlala inguqu. Esephiwe umsebenzi lo, uNowa kazange atshone phansi njengomswenya kumbe athwale imikhono ekhanda futhi kazange azame izindlela zokuqumela ukuze enze umsebenzi wakhe ubelula. IBhayibhili lithi: “UNowa wakwenza konke njengokulaywa kwakhe nguNkulunkulu.”—Gen. 6:22.

12 Umsebenzi lo wadonsa okweminyaka eminengi, mhlawumbe engu-40 kusiya kwengu-50. Wayegamula izihlahla, athwale izigodo, azisahe, azibaze aphinde azihlanganise. Umkhumbi kwakumele ube lezitezi ezintathu lamakamelo kanye lomnyango eceleni njalo kumele ukuthi kwakulamawindi phezulu. Mhlawumbe uphahla lwalulungiswe ngendlela yokuthi nxa izulu selisina amanzi ayezabe ezigelezela kuhle esiya phansi.—Gen. 6:14-16.

13. Yiwuphi umsebenzi uNowa ayelawo okumele ukuthi wawunzima kulokwakha umkhumbi, njalo abantu bamlalela yini?

13 Okweminyaka leminyaka uNowa esakha umkhumbi, kufanele ukuthi kwakumthokozisa kakhulu ukuthi imuli yakhe yayimncedisa. Kodwa kwakulomsebenzi okumele ukuthi wawunzima ukwedlula ukwakha umkhumbi. IBhayibhili lisitshela ukuthi uNowa ‘wayengumtshumayeli wokulunga.’ (Bala u-2 Phetro 2:5.) Waba lesibindi sokukhokhela emsebenzini wokuxwayisa abantu ababengalaleli uNkulunkulu, ebatshela ukuthi kwakulengozi eyayisemnyango eyayizatshabalalisa yonke into. Balalela yini? UJesu Khristu wakhuluma ngabantu labo wathi “ababanga lendaba,” (NW). Wathi kabazange bamlalele uNowa kodwa babephatheke ngezinto zansuku zonke nje, besidla, benatha, bethatha njalo besendisa. (Mat. 24:37-39) Akuthandabuzwa ukuthi yena lemuli yakhe babehlekwa; mhlawumbe abanye baze babethusele futhi babahlukuluze. Kungenzakala lokuthi bazama lokumisa umsebenzi wabo wokwakha.

Lanxa kwakulobufakazi bokuthi uNkulunkulu wayembusisa uNowa, abantu bamklolodela njalo abazange bamlalele

14. Izimuli zamaKhristu zingafundani kuNowa kanye lemuli yakhe?

14 Kodwa uNowa lemuli yakhe abazange bakhalale umsebenzi wabo. Baqhubeka bewuqakathekisa ukwedlula loba yini lanxa abantu babewukhangelela phansi, bebona angani yikudlalisa isikhathi futhi yibuthutha. Ngakho-ke izimuli zamaKhristu zingafunda okunengi kuNowa lemuli yakhe eyayilokholo. Phela iBhayibhili lithi siphila “ezinsukwini zokucina” komumo lo wezinto. (2 Tim. 3:1) UJesu wathi isikhathi esiphila kuso sasizafanana lezinsuku zikaNowa ngesikhathi esakha umkhumbi. AmaKhristu kumele enzeni nxa angathi etshumayela ngoMbuso kaNkulunkulu abesehlangana labantu abayabe bengawanaki,  bewahleka futhi bewahlukuluza? Kungaba kuhle ukuthi akhumbule uNowa. Kuyabe kungaqali ngawo.

“Ngena Emkhunjini”

15. UNowa wafelwa ngobani esezakuba leminyaka engu-600?

15 Kwadlula iminyaka leminyaka umkhumbi ulokhu usakhiwa njalo wawususiyaphela. UNowa wathi esezakuba leminyaka engu-600 wafelwa yizihlobo. Wafelwa nguyise, uLameki. * Kwathi sekwedlule iminyaka emihlanu wafelwa nguyisemkhulu, uMethusela. Watshona eseleminyaka engu-969 futhi nguye owayezala uLameki. Waphila iminyaka eminengi ukwedlula bonke abantu okukhulunywa ngabo eBhayibhilini. (Gen. 5:27) ULameki loMethusela babephile ngesikhathi indoda yokuqala u-Adamu ingakafi.

16, 17. (a) UNowa waphiwa wuphi umlayo omutsha eseleminyaka engu-600? (b) Chaza isimanga sezimanga esabonwa nguNowa lemuli yakhe.

16 UNowa wathi eseleminyaka engu-600, uJehova uNkulunkulu wamnika umlayo othi: “Ngena emkhunjini, wena kanye lendlu yakho yonke.” Wamtshela lokuthi angenise lezinyamazana. Kwakumele angenise eziyisikhombisa kumhlobo ngamunye wezihlambulukileyo ayengazisebenzisa ekunikeleni, besekusithi kweminye imihlobo angenise ngazimbili.—Gen. 7:1-3.

17 Kumele ukuthi abakubonayo kwakuyisimanga sezimanga. Kwakuqubuka izinkulungwane zezinanakazana ezihuquzelayo, izinyamazana  kanye lezinyoni eziphaphayo zonke zisiza emkhunjini. Zazitshiyene ubukhulu bazo, ukubunjwa kwazo, kulezaziyingozi lezazingayisiyo ngozi. Kodwa uNowa kazange azivimbezele, atshudulane lazo ezama ukuzithambisa ukuze zingene emkhunjini. IBhayibhili lithi “zeza kuNowa zangena emkhunjini.”—Gen. 7:9.

18, 19. (a) Singayiphendula njani imibuzo yabantu abangayikholwayo indaba kaNowa? (b) Kuyini okwatshengisa ukuthi uJehova ulenhlakanipho lapho ekhetha indlela yokulondoloza izinyamazana?

18 Abangayikholwayo indaba le bangabuza bathi: ‘Yayingenzakala njani into enjalo? Kwakungenzakala njani ukuthi izinyamazana zonke lezo zihlale ngaphansi kophahla olulodwa?’ Kodwa uMdali wezinto zonke kungamehlula yini ukuqondisa izinyamazana zakhe, enze lokuthi zingalimazi ezinye izinyamazana kumbe abantu? Phela uJehova nguye owazidalayo. Ngemva kweminyaka eminengi wehlukanisa amanzi olwandle olubomvu waphinda wenza lokuthi ilanga lime mpo. Pho wayengehluleka yini ukwenza konke lokhu okubhalwe endabeni kaNowa? Kakula lutho olwalungamehlula njalo wakwenza sibili!

19 Zinengi izindlela uNkulunkulu ayengazisebenzisa ukuthi alondoloze izinyamazana zakhe. Kodwa wakhetha ukusebenzisa indlela eyayizasikhumbuza ukuthi abantu wayevele ebanike umsebenzi wokukhangela zonke izinto eziphilayo emhlabeni. (Gen. 1:28) Lokhu kwatshengisa ukuthi ulenhlakanipho sibili. Yikho-ke abazali abanengi lamuhla bayayisebenzisa indaba kaNowa ukuze bafundise abantwababo ukuthi uJehova uyabaqakathekisa abantu kanye lezinyamazana azidalayo.

20. UNowa lemuli yakhe kumele ukuthi babesenzani sekusele iviki ukuthi uZamcolo afike?

20 UJehova watshela uNowa ukuthi kwasekusele iviki eyodwa  ukuthi uZamcolo afike. Kumele ukuthi kwakuyisiphithiphithi ngezinsuku lezo. Uyababona yini besebenza gadalala bezama ukungenisa zonke izinyamazana ezindaweni zazo? Akucabange bengenisa ukudla kwazo lokwemuli emkhunjini futhi belungisa lezimpahla zabo. UmkaNowa kanye lomkaShemu, okaHamu lokaJafethi bona kumele ukuthi babelungilungisa izinto emkhunjini ukuze imuli ihlale kuhle.

21, 22. (a) Kungani kungamelanga kusimangalise ukuthi abantu babengelandaba loNowa? (b) Ukukloloda kwabomakhelwana bakaNowa kwaphela sekutheni?

21 Omakhelwana bona-ke babesenzani? Babelokhu ‘bengalandaba,’ (NW), lanxa ubufakazi bokuthi uJehova wayembusisa uNowa babusegcekeni. Babezibona izinyamazana zitheleka ngobunengi bazo zisiza emkhunjini. Kodwa akumelanga kusimangalise ukuthi babengelani lakho lokhu. Lalamuhla abantu kabalandaba lobufakazi obusegcekeni bokuthi siphila ezinsukwini zokucina zomumo lo wezinto. Umphostoli uPhetro wayevele waphrofetha ukuthi kwakuzafika abaklolodayo behoza abantu abalalela isixwayiso sikaNkulunkulu. (Bala u-2 Phetro 3:3-6.) Yikho kanye okwenzakala kuNowa lemuli yakhe.

22 Ukukloloda lokhu kwaze kwaphela sekutheni? Endabeni kaNowa sitshelwa ukuthi esengene emkhunjini lemuli yakhe kanye lezinyamazana, ‘uJehova wamvalela phakathi.’ Nxa kwakuseselabaklolodayo, akuthandabuzwa ukuthi isimanga leso esenziwa nguNkulunkulu sabaquma imilomo. Nxa kwakuleziqholo, izulu laqedelana lazo ngoba lana okuzwayo. Laqhubeka lithululeka imihla lamalanga laze lasibekela umhlaba wonke njengoba uJehova wayetshilo.—Gen. 7:16-21.

23. (a) Sikwazi njani ukuthi uJehova wayengathokozi lapho abantu abaxhwalileyo abaphila ngesikhathi sikaNowa besifa? (b) Kungani kuqakathekile ukuthi ube lokholo njengoNowa?

23 Pho-ke uJehova wathokoza yini ngokufa kwabantu labo ababexhwalile? Ngitsho lakancane. (Hez. 33:11) Wayebanike isikhathi eseneleyo sokuthi bantshintshe benze okuqondileyo. Yikho-ke babengenelisa ukwenza njalo. Lokhu sikubona nxa singakhangela indlela uNowa ayeziphatha ngayo. Wabambelela kuNkulunkulu emlalela kukho konke, njalo lokhu kwatshengisa ukuthi loba ngubani wayengasinda. Ngokukholwa kwakhe, wawulahla umhlaba ayephila kuwo, waveza egcekeni ukuthi abantu ayephila labo babexhwalile okwamagama. Ukukholwa kwakhe kwamvikela yena kanye lemuli yakhe. Nxa ungaba lokholo njengoNowa, ungasinda uphinde uncede izihlobo kanye labangane bakho. Lawe ungalingisela uNowa ngokubambelela kuJehova ube ngumngane wakhe. Lingaba ngabangane kuze kube nini lanini.

^ indima 7 Ngesikhathi leso abantu babephila iminyaka eminengi kakhulu kulakhathesi. Lokhu kwakungabe kubangelwa yikuthi babeseselemizimba eqine saka eyayifuze eyabazali babo u-Adamu lo-Eva ababengelasikhathi eside befile.

^ indima 15 ULameki wayenike indodana yakhe ibizo elithi Nowa mhlawumbe elitsho ukuthi “Ukuphumula” kumbe “Induduzo.” Wayephinde waphrofetha ukuthi uNowa wayezakwenza khona kanye okutshiwo libizo leli ngoba wayezakwenza ukuthi abantu baphumule ukusebenza nzima emhlabathini uJehova ayewuthukile. (Gen. 5:28, 29) ULameki wafa isiphrofetho lesi singakagcwaliseki. Kungenzekala ukuthi unina kaNowa, abafowabo kanye labodadewabo babulawa nguZamcolo.