Developing our hearts and lives to walk with God is the only solution for facing the future with any real hope of overcoming. What if we made all of our decisions with intentions to yield to the Spirit, no matter how He is guiding us? Reflecting on the life of Noah from the book of beginnings, there is quite a story to tell that applies to us too.
Noah’s name means rest. Scripture teaches, “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (Gen.6:8). Think of this, “Rest found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” In the story, the condition of humanity at that time was very bleak. But God!
This is the very first mention of grace in the Bible. That’s significant. The law of first reference says we must go to the first time something is mentioned in Scripture to get the clearest, most concise understanding. To understand the end, we must understand the beginning! Matthew 24:37 states, “but as the days of Noah were, So also will the coming of the Son of Man be” (New King James Version). Uh-oh here we go!
Here in this New Testament passage, we see that God directed Noah to obey even in an uncharted path. Hebrews 11:7 says, “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (NKJV, emphasis added).
Noah’s ark is a picture of Jesus, and He is full of grace and full of rest! Noah found safety in the ark.
Remember, it had been prophesied in the garden (Genesis 3) that the Seed of man would be the one to destroy the works of the devil. If the bloodline of all mankind had been corrupted, Jesus could not have been born. The corruption of the human bloodline directly attacked God‘s plan of salvation. This is key for us to understand that very prophecy and promise. It was a glimpse of the virgin birth to come. Then, there began the murderous campaign from the devil through Cain and Abel.
In Genesis 6: 1–4, it says, “Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose. And the Lord said, ‘My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, for he is indeed flesh; yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.’ There were giants (Nephilim)on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them” (NKJV, emphasis added).
The reference to “giants” comes from the Hebrew word Nephiyl, which means “fall,” or what we understand to mean “fallen ones.” Strong’s Concordance says, “a feller, i.e. a bully or tyrant:—giant.” Genesis and other books—the writings of Josephus, the historical record, and scientific documents—record the fact that giants have lived on nearly every continent in the world at some point in history. We have somehow failed to link this factor with what the Bible explains about the origin in activities of giants. (This reference to sons of God is referring to fallen angels according to the Septuagint.) The devil was out to corrupt the women’s seed. In verse 4, the reference to “in those days” shows it was clearly speaking of before the flood. Additional eruptions after the flood were dealt with by Israel.
“‘The occult’ (which just means secret or hidden) initiates and brainwashes. It leads its followers into degrees of deception until they totally reject God’s revelation of Himself given to all the world through His eternal word” (excerpt from Apocalypse byDr. Jim Richards).
In a very significant passage in the New Testament, you can glean more. Second Peter 2:4–5 says, “For if God did not spare the angels (Nephilim) who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly” (NKJV, emphasis added).
The first and most obvious factor which led to the flood of Noah’s day was the corruption of man’s bloodline.
“Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. So the Lord said, ‘I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.’ But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord”(Genesis 6:5-8,NKJV,emphasis added).
Notice God’s emotion was not raging anger, but sadness. The ark, however, was a place of safety and refuge, and it foreshadowed Jesus Christ. We are now “in Him” as believers. Resting is believing. Noah’s very name means “rest,” and he pleased God! Rest pleases God. It’s a foreshadowing of our position in Christ’s finished work.
Again, “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.”
Noah pleased God. “This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God. And Noah begot three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. So God looked upon the earth, and indeed it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth” (Genesis 6:9–12, NKJV, emphasis added).
The ark was prepared. It took faith and effort. Noah acted on what he believed. He was a preacher of righteousness, all while he worked on this major life project.
“And God said to Noah, ‘The end of all flesh has come before Me, for the earth is filled with violence through them; and behold, I will destroy them with the earth. Make yourself an ark of gopherwood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and outside with pitch’” (Genesis 6:13–14, NKJV, emphasis added).
Even the pitch used on the wood (symbolizing man) as a sealant represented the (more than) covering we have in Christ. The Hebrew word kapher (to make atonement) is used for “pitch.” This of course symbolizes the blood of Jesus which cleanses us from all sin.
The windows above had ventilation and light coming in from above and not the sides. They were designed by God for Noah to look up and look to Him and not to look out and around at the destruction coming upon the earth. So much symbolism in the story can parallel our own life situations. Noah’s ark was almost the size of the Titanic; 450 feet long is a ginormous vessel and habitation. Genesis 7:16, “The Lord shut him in,” speaks of how God prepares people before a crisis. Here they were eternally secure! God closed the door! You are safe from the waters of judgement! Not only did God close the door, but before, when it was time, He told Noah to “come” into the ark. He didn’t say “go” into the ark—He said “come” into the ark, indicating that God was in there and was with them the whole time. Although waves may smash against my ark (life’s circumstances), His pitch (Christ’s blood) still secures and covers me! God was merciful in this happening—He was preserving mankind.
Genesis 8:1–5 expresses Noah’s deliverance, “Then God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the animals that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters subsided. The fountains of the deep and the windows of heaven were also stopped, and the rain from heaven was restrained.And the waters receded continually from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters decreased.Then the ark rested in the seventh month, the seventeenth day of the month, on the mountains of Ararat.And the waters decreased continually until the tenth month. In the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains were seen” (NKJV).
Ararat means “the curse is reversed.” The ark rested the seventh month and seventeenth day of the month on the mountains of Ararat. The seventeenth day represents the feast of first fruits—judgment has passed. God is desiring to get the point across that Jesus took our judgment for us.
“The religious concept of a curse is when God punishes us for ungodly deeds, but the biblical concept depicts as a curse as the result of pursuing that which is not harmonious with God. The curse is not a choice or action of God; it’s the consequence of which God warned, but we ignore. Planet earth under the authority of man, became cursed as a result of man becoming disharmonious [with] God” (Dr. Jim Richards).
Now through the covenant of peace, God will never be angry with us again! Look at this profound passage from the prophet Isaiah: “‘For this is like the waters of Noah to Me; For as I have sworn That the waters of Noah would no longer cover the earth, So have I sworn That I would not be angry with you, nor rebuke you. For the mountains shall depart And the hills be removed, But My kindness shall not depart from you, Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,’ Says the LORD, who has mercy on you” (Isaiah 54:9-10, NKJV).
In Genesis, God said, “‘Thus I establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.’ And God said: ‘This is the sign of the covenant which I make between Me and you, and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth’” (Genesis 9:11–13, NKJV).
And we have the rainbow as a sign. The good news of Jesus is the Gospel of peace.
Pastor, Author, Mother, Wife