Nuh Builds the Ark
Allah answered Nuh’s supplication. He willed that the fate of the arrogant disbelievers would be drowning in a great flood.
Allah wanted to save Nuh and the believers, and so He commanded him to build a huge ship with no precedence, the ark. Nuh immediately began building the ark. Every time the leaders of his people passed by him, they ridiculed him. They said, “You are making a boat in the desert. How would it float?” Nuh would say, “You will learn soon!” they would mockingly say, “Nuh, you have become a carpenter after being a prophet! Where is this ship going to sail? The sea is a long way from here. Who is going to pull the ship?”
Nuh heard all that patiently. He had always been patient. Sometimes he would say, “If you ridicule us, then we will ridicule you just as you ridicule.” (Quran, 11:38)
The Great Flood
After Nuh built the great ship, Allah commanded him to take with him a pair of every animal and creature, a male and a female. Nuh did as he was commanded to do. With him in the ship were those of his people who believed him pair of every creature.
The Promise of Allah came. The fountains of the deep began to flow and the gates of the heavens were opened. Allah caused the earth to gush forth with springs. Raging torrents of water turned the earth into springs. Between the time Allah sent the water and the ship floating on the water were many days and nights. The water rose higher and higher. The ship carried Nuh and those with him on waves like mountains. The water rose above the tops of the mountains.
The people outside the ship climbed onto every high place and every mountain, fleeing from Allah’s punishment. But there was no refuge from Allah except in Him.
Nuh had a son who was with the disbelievers. He saw his son in the flood and called out to him, “My son, come aboard with us and do not be with the disbelievers.” The son said, “I will take refuge on a mountain to protect me from the water.”
Nuh said, “There is no protector today from the decree of Allah except for whom He gives mercy.” The waves came between them, and he was among those who were drowned. Nuh was sad for his son. He wanted to save him from the Fire on the Day of Judgement, so he called upon His Lord, saying, “My Lord, my son is of my family. Your promise is the truth, and You are the most just of judges.” Allah said, “Nuh, he is not of your family: indeed, he is [one whose] work was other than righteous, so do not ask Me about that which you have no knowledge…” Nuh said, “My Lord, I seek refuge with You from asking that of which have no knowledge. Unless You forgive me and have mercy on me, I will be one of the losers.”
Allah does not look at people’s families from which somebody is descended. He looks at their actions and their intentions. An idol-worshipper is not part of a Prophet’s family, even though he may be his own son.
The Flood Recedes
After what Allah had willed had occurred and the disbelievers had perished, the rain stopped and the water receded by Allah’s command: “Earth, swallow your water sky, withhold [your rain].”
The water then subsided, the matter was concluded and the ship came to rest on Mount Judi. It was said, “Nuh, come out of the ship in peace from Us, blessings upon you and upon nations [descending] from those with you.”
Nuh and those with him left the ship and walked on the earth in peace. Allah blessed the descendants of Nuh. They spread in the land and filled the earth. There were several communities among them. There were prophets and kings among them.