Dutch Christian businessman Johan Huibers plans to sail his life-sized replica of Noah’s Ark to Israel. Declaring his love for the Jewish state, he said:
“This is a copy of God’s ship. It only makes sense to take it to God’s land. I love the country, I love people. They don’t obey, they do what they want, they drive like mad, shove while waiting in line and don’t listen to anyone. Just like me.”
Huibers developed the strong urge to build the ark after reading the story about it to his children one night in 1993. His wife, who works as a cop, initially laughed at him and said that once he’d finished building one, “we can all go on vacation to the moon.”
However, Huibers persisted and completed the four-year project – built to the exact specifications in Genesis 6 – in 2012, raising the $5 million needed for its construction.
Dwarfing even some modern-day cruise ships, the ark instantly became an international tourist attraction in southern Holland along the Maas River.
One major hurdle to overcome first, though, is that the Dutch carpenter’s vessel has no motor, so he’ll need to rent tugboats to sail it.
According to reports, Huibers needs to raise $1.3 million to hire for the voyage. Earlier, he’d considered sailing it to Brazil, but those plans didn’t materialize.
“We had a butcher, a hairdresser and a teacher working here,” he said, definitely not professional boat makers.
That might explain why officials in Krimpen aan de Ijssel won’t let it reopen to visitors at present, because of public safety concerns.
Yet Huibers said that the ship is safe, insured and equipped with fire extinguishing gear.
The boatmaker also said that he believes we are “living in the end of times” but that people aren’t “conscious” of it. “The water is going to come. From the mountains, from the sea, through Germany. It sounds like doom and gloom, but I’m not afraid of it,” he added. Huibers hopes his replica of Noah’s Ark will help people understand that God is real, “to show people that God exists.”