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Beginnings in Genesis – Noah Obeys

April 14, 2008

I am going to put an end to all people
Gen 6:13

When God created human kind in Gen 1 he commanded them to be fruitful and to fill the earth. Made in the image of God they were to populate the world with the image of God, instead, because of their sin, the scriptures say:

Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. 12 God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. It grieved God so deeply that he had made something that had become so corrupted by sin that he decided to put an end to it all.
Gen 6:11,12

flood21.jpgThe means he chose was a FLOOD in which all flesh would be destroyed, he says (:13). But God is caught in this desperate love affair. He hates what has become of his creation, but he cannot bear to let it go completely, so he selects the one righteous man and his family and makes a way of escape for them and the animals. He commanded Noah to build an ark, into which he would secrete Noah’s family and two of every unclean animal and seven of the clean animals.

Despite the bizarre nature of the command, Noah obeys.

The story of God’s saving grace is interwoven with the story of Noah’s obedience. This is our part in fellowship with God. Trust and dependence on God’s saving power must be married to daily, visible obedience. An obedience that is not just true of us when we are in church, but in the daily grind of bearing the hammer and the nail and the pitch, constructing our metaphorical arks. The scriptures say:Genesis 6:22 Noah did everything just as God commanded him. Also 3:5.

Chapter 7:8,9 have this wonderful picture of all the living creatures of the earth making a mass pilgrimage to that only place on the planet where salvation was to be found, in the ark. Even as the rain began, animals and humans are making their way that journey.

From → Genesis

One Comment
  1. asharedadventure permalink

    I don’t see it as a linear realisation that God favoured Noah after deciding that the rest of mankind was corrupt. It’s more like a general summing up because in the next section (the more detailed account) Noah’s righteousness is talked about first then how corrupt the rest of the earth was. We know God’s favour has already been present in the family line leading to Noah as ‘the Lord looked with favour on Abel…’, then Seth was granted in place of Abel (at that time men began to call on the Lord), and Enoch ‘walked with God, then he was no more, because God took him away’.

    The righteousness of Noah seems connected more to the importance of ‘walking with God’ rather than righteous acts and character (thank goodness!). Having faith and trust in God, seeking him, spending time listening to him is the key as Hebrews 11:5-19 tells us. “By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death” (views on this would be welcomed!) “he was commended as one who pleased God and without faith it is impossible to please God” “By faith holy fear built an ark to save his family”. It is reassuring that rather than legalistic efforts to be ‘good’ it is our heart motives and desire to fellowship with our Lord that pleases him.

    I don’t see God as maturing as that would suggest a time when he would have been immature, making mistakes etc. The Word tells us that God is the same yesterday, today and forever. At the time of Noah, the wickedness of man ruled every part of him “every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time” corruption had totally taken them over and would spread throughout the whole earth. At the time of Abraham the issue was Sodom and Gomorrah and God states he “will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry…” there is potential for mercy there. God has said he has choosen Abraham so that he will keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just (Gen 18:17-19). Many times God involves us not for his benefit but for ours by teaching us through tests. Perhaps this is a test of Abraham in choosing and standing for what is right and just.

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