There are not many references to boats in the OT since the Hebrews were not a seafaring people; indeed the sea had connotations of evil (Ps. 107:26; cf. Rev. 21:1). However, in the NT boats are familiar parts of the scenery since Jesus called fisher-men to be disciples and sometimes addressed people on the shore from a boat (Mark 4:1). A boat soon became a symbol in Christian art; both the cradle and the coffin are shaped like boats, so the boat is an apt symbol of birth and death, of new birth and resurrection (a journey by boat into the next world).

Dictionary of the Bible.

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