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According to the Biblical narrative, the Deluge covered the whole world killing every surface-dwelling creature except Noah, his family and the creatures of the ark. After the flood, God seals a covenant with Noah with the following admonitions (Genesis 9):

  • Food: "Also, flesh with the life -the blood- in it do not eat." (9:4)
  • Murder: "I will also inquire about your blood, your life, from all animals, and from each human I will inquire about his brother's blood. Who sheds the blood of man, by man his blood will be shed, because in the image of God was man made."

The Talmud (tractate Sanhedrin 56a/b, quoting Tosefta Sanhedrin 9:4) states that the instruction to not eat "flesh with the life" was given to Noah, and that Adam and Eve had already received six other commandments. The remaining six are exegetically derived from a seemingly superfluous sentence in Genesis 2:16.[1]


  1. http://www.wikinoah.org/index.php/Noahide_Laws#The_Seven_Laws