Regina’s Note : I see redemption everywhere. Recently I took my son to see The Lorax, and I could not get past the similarities to the redemption story of the Gospel. I am fairly certain I was probably one of the few in the theater with that perspective, watching Dr. Seuss and thinking eternal salvation. But once a heart has truly been transformed by the saving grace of Jesus, you see His fingerprint everywhere.
In the Bible, the tale of Noah is a sobering tale of corruption, rebellion and death. I was watching a Francis Chan video with the kids the other day, and he was commenting on how people decorate kids nursery’s with Noah’s Ark images. In essence, they are commemorating the mass destruction of the earth, as beneath those two smiling giraffes, humanity perished. But I see an entirely different perspective. I see redemption. I see a story of a God who pulls out every stop to save us, and who always provides an escape when we respond to Him.
Lord, I pray You will use me to impart knowledge and revelation, not in my words but Yours.
11 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. 13 So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. 18 But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark—you and your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives with you.
The Bible likens the second coming of Jesus to the great flood. “As in the days of Noah”, Matthew 24 warns, people will be caught completely unaware, even though they have been warned repeatedly. I cannot help but see this scripture applied directly to our world. As warnings of leaving God out of our government, our schools, our marriages and our lives resound, they are met with increasing ridicule and animosity. The Word of God, with all its clear warnings, is being completely disregarded. The prophetic overtones are no longer whispering. They are crying out.
As in the days of Noah.
Psalm 14:1-3 The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good. The LORD looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one. In Noah’s day, the world had reached a point of such corruption because it had totally disregarded God. Noah had warned them of the coming destruction for 100 years. He told them of God’s plan to save them, and all he was met with was ridicule. The people thought their own way of life appropriate, and decided God’s Word was no longer relevant to their lives. Sound familiar? Matthew 24: 38-39 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away.
By stark contrast is the loving reaction of God to Noah, who was faithful to God’s Words. Not only was he faithful to the word of God, but he persisted in the task God has given him. This could not have been easy, given that he was likely considered completely irrational and fanatical by the people of his day. But God richly rewards those who persist for Him. Genesis 17:7 I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you.
God draws lines of connection throughout the entire Bible. His message is always the same. The world rejects Him. He reaches out with a message of salvation. Some accept the message and are safe. Many reject the message, and suffer destruction. Although the end result may seem harsh, every person is given the opportunity to hear the message and to decide for themselves. Sadly, human pride often overrides the love of God. 2 Peter 2:5 He did not spare the ancient world when He brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others;
The story of Noah is a remarkable foreshadowing to the story of Jesus.
* For years and years, people were told of God’s plan or destruction and redemption.
Matthew 3:1-3 In those days John the Baptist came, preaching “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.” This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah: “A voice of one calling in the desert,‘ Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.
* They heard, but they chose not to listen.
1 Corinthians 1:18 The message of the cross (salvation) is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.
* The ark was built large enough for whoever wanted to climb on board, and all were welcomed. But there was only one door constructed on the ark through which to walk.
John 10:9 “I am the gate (door); whoever enters through Me will be saved.
* Once that door shut, there was no hope for those left outside.
John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
As I said, I see redemption everywhere. In the end, the story of Noah’s salvation is a beautiful picture of God’s plan for those who hear His voice and respond to Him. He protects us from the flood waters, the trials of life. Isaiah 43:2 When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. He lifts us above the corruption and gives us safe passage. John 17:15-16 My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it.
And when we come to God, He washes away the sin and corruption in our lives, and gives us a fresh start, just as Noah and his family were given a fresh start on Earth. 1 Corinthians 6:11 And sinful is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
Today, Realize: The destruction of humanity was due to their decision to ignore God in their society. Noah’s salvation was due to His steadfast obedience to the Word of God regardless of the prevailing views of the day. He was not a perfect man, but He loved and served God, even when no one else did. To this day, those of us who do so are promised the same rescue, protection, and fresh start. All we have to do is believe Him – no matter what the world says – and walk through the door to safety. Jesus Christ is that door.
As in the days of Noah, you are being called to choose to walk under the directives of God. You may not be popular. People may ignore you, think you are crazy, and you may feel isolated sometimes. But the Truth of God is the only thing that will rescue you from the floods of pain, tragedy, despair and death, both here and into eternity. Don’t go along with the crowd. Seek the path to the door, and run at it as fast as you can, before it slams shut.
Romans 13:11 And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.