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How Many "Arks" Were There?

Updated on September 19, 2016
Depiction of Ark.
Depiction of Ark.
Moses and the Ten Commandments.
Moses and the Ten Commandments.
A depiction of the Ark of the Covenant.
A depiction of the Ark of the Covenant.
God's sign to all generations that He will not destroy the earth as promised in Genesis 9.
God's sign to all generations that He will not destroy the earth as promised in Genesis 9.
Moses as a baby found (depiction).
Moses as a baby found (depiction).
Some believe that the original Ark of the Covenant is in St. Mary of Zion Church in Aksum, Ethiopia.  However it is not available for inspection.
Some believe that the original Ark of the Covenant is in St. Mary of Zion Church in Aksum, Ethiopia. However it is not available for inspection.
Where Noah's Ark is believed present on Mount Arafat.
Where Noah's Ark is believed present on Mount Arafat.

How much do you know about the "Arks" of the Bible? Did you know there was more than one?


The Bible is a book of history, prophecy, and the creation of man. It is about God’s creation and God’s plan for mankind. It is a book of many stories involving many individuals and one of those stories include Noah and the Ark. It is the Word of God.

As the title above asks do you know if there was more than one ark? Have you given it any thought? Would you like to know if there was? If so, read on.

The answer to the above question is yes. The Bible has more than one ark that most of us are familiar. The one most known by most of us is the one first mentioned in the Bible in Genesis. In this story God instructs Noah to build an “Ark” (Genesis 6:14). God instructs Noah to build this ark because God has decided that mankind is wicked and must be destroyed. However, Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Genesis 6:8) who grieved in his heart at what mankind had become. Man had become evil in his intent and thoughts.

In brief God had instructed Noah to build the Ark. After many years the Ark was complete and God instructed Noah and his family to go in to the Ark as he has established a covenant with Noah. Noah was six hundred years old when the flood water were on the earth (Genesis 7:6). The story of Noah and the Ark is the first “Ark” of the bible. After the flood every animal, every creeping thing, every bird, and what ever creeps on the earth, according to their families went out of the ark. Noah built an altar to the Lord and offered “burnt offerings” on the altar (Genesis 8:16-20). The Lord smelled the offering and it was in his heart that I will never again curse the ground for man’s sake, although the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth (Genesis 8:21).

God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth (Genesis 9:1). God spoke to Noah and his sons and established a covenant with them and their descendants, and with every living creature that went out of the ark. The sign of my covenant with you and all living creatures is with you for all perpetual generations. This sign is my rainbow in the clouds (Genesis 9: 11-17).

The second Ark of the bible is in Exodus 2:3. The book of Exodus is the record of Israel’s birth as a nation. It is a continuation of Genesis. It is considered by many as one of the greatest historical events of the ancient world. The Exodus was the mass movement of the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt back to the Promised Land in Canaan. The Pharaoh of Egypt did not want them to go and he threatens them with military retaliation. In broad summary, the Book of Exodus details Moses delivery of the Hebrew people from slavery in Egypt (Exodus 1-18) and in giving them the law from God at Mount Sinai (Exodus 19-40).

Before Moses delivered his people out of Egypt there was the birth of Moses. This is where the second Ark of the Bible comes in. In Exodus 2:3 it is described that a woman (Moses mother) who conceived him had hid him for three months. She could not continue to hide him so she took an “ark” of bulrushes she made and daubed it with asphalt and pitch. She placed the baby Moses in the ark and laid it in the reed by the rivers bank. As you recall the king of Egypt ordered all sons of Hebrews born to be cast in to the river. The baby in the basket or ark was found by Pharaoh’s daughter who instructed her maiden to nurse the baby and raise the child. As the child grew the child became her son and Pharaoh’s daughter named him Moses (Exodus 2: 1-11). This is the story of the second “Ark of the Bible.

The third “Ark” of the Bible is in Exodus 25. In Exodus 24 Moses went up to the mountain top (Mount Sinai) as God directed (verse 12). God tells Moses that he will give him “tablets of stone” and the law and commandments which I (God) have written, that you may teach them (Israel). Moses goes up to the mountain top and the glory of the Lord rested on Mount Sinai. A cloud covered it for six days. On the seventh day God called Moses out of the midst of the cloud (verse16). The sight of the glory of the Lord was like a consuming fire on the top of the mountain in the eyes of the children of Israel (verse170. Moses was on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying speak to the children of Israel that they may bring me an offering. From everyone who gives it willingly with his heart you shall take my offering (Exodus 25:1-2, 3-9). They were to make the Lord a sanctuary and tabernacle so that he may dwell among them.

In verse 10 God tells Israel to make an “Ark” of acacia wood. The requirements of the “Ark” to be built are described in Verses 10-22 approximately. The “Ark of the Covenant” was only to be carried by the members of the Levitical priesthood. It was the most important item within the tabernacle. Initially the Ark carried the Ten Commandments (1 Kings), later a jar of manna and Aaron’s rod added later. The story and history of the Ark of the Covenant is more than this hub can explain. It is recommended that you read the Scriptures indicated below for more information. This is the third “Ark of the Bible.

The fourth “Ark” in the Bible is in Genesis 50:26. In this verse Joseph had died and was placed in a coffin. The Hebrew word for coffin is “ark” or a wooden box.

I hope you have enjoyed reading this Hub. Thank You. I thank for where ever I got this idea.



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      sheilamyers 3 years ago

      You got me with this hub because I could only think of two arks. I had forgotten Moses was put in the ark as a baby - I always refer to it as a basket. I also didn't know the coffin was an ark. Thanks for the interesting and educational hub.

    • Ronald Bachner profile image
      Author

      Ronald Bachner 3 years ago from Pittsburgh

      Thank You Sheila for your comments. Nice to meet you. I also found the topic interesting and hope it is educational for others.

    • celafoe profile image

      charlie 2 months ago from Planet earth. between the oceans

      dont know how I missed you before but another great article. I love articles that are true to scripture. Thank You

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      KingdomCome 2 months ago from those of the Ecclesia

      Great article, but there is actually a fifth Ark in the Holy Bible you have not mentioned and that ark is the Ark in Heaven. Note Rev. 11:19 (NKJV) which states:19 Then the temple of God was open in heaven and the ARK of the covenant was seen in His temple. And there was lightning, noises, thunderings, and earthquake,and great hail.

      God bless

    • celafoe profile image

      charlie 2 months ago from Planet earth. between the oceans

      KC- I believe the ark you mentioned is actually the one from the old testament that God has hidden til the end times when it will reappear as another testament to Him. they each have and end time message as you know

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