Intro: Gen 6:5-8 – 5 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. 6 And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. 7 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.” 8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.
The event is focused on 2 individuals – God & Noah. The accounts of this salvation event tell us some things about each. There is a parallel here to our own salvation that we cannot miss.
I. The God of Noah’s Flood – Do you believe in the God who is described in Genesis 6? There is no doubt that God was actively involved in His creation. He accounts its spiritual demise and is grieved over its corruption. He is able to do something about it. The God who creates can also destroy – this makes a convincing argument – (“I brought you into this world, and I can take you out, and make another one just like you to take your place”)
A. A God who Punishes Sin… The flood is a monument to God’s judgment against sin. Peter dramatically describes God to us in his second epistle. He takes us back to the flood as testimony to God’s character. What can we know about God from what we learn here and in the account of Genesis 6?
1. God is a moral being who sees the evil & the good. God took notice of how the people of Noah’s day were living.
2. God is offended by evil and is willing to punish evil. There are so many people today who see God as a doting grandfather who really doesn’t care, or who is unwilling to punish misbehavior. Get away with anything. But the God of the flood is different character. Earlier God told 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.
B. Read 2 Peter 2:4-9 – For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; 5 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; 6 and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; 7 and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked 8 (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds) — 9 then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment.
1. Peter says that God “did not spare the ancient world” (2:5). There are many today who would have objected to God’s actions and refused to acknowledge a God who would not spare the sinful world.
a) Peter references events long past (even one that before time began) to indicate two important realities about God.
b) 9 – “then the Lord knows”… Peter tells us what God knows how to do… this is a way of telling what He does do – this is His character…
• “how to deliver the godly out of temptations and…
• how to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment.”
c) What are the implications of God’s proven character? Later Peter warns Christians against apathy and forgetfulness concerning the promised judgment that is yet to come. There were mockers in his day as well… 2 Peter 3:5-7 – 5 For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, 6 by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. 7 But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
d) Peter makes it clear that the same force that brought the ancient world into existence -“by the word of God” (vs. 5) will also destroy it. In vs. 7 he says it is being preserved until that time “by the same word”. “the Word of God” here is describing His power to create and destroy – It describes His volition and sovereignty.
• Is it surprising that a society that denies the creation (by divine force) would scoff at the coming judgment?
e) The flood was not just a meteorological anomaly. God caused it. We call it the flood of Noah, but it was God’s flood!
C. Read Genesis 7:13-16 – 13 On the very same day Noah and Shem and Ham and Japheth, the sons of Noah, and Noah’s wife and the three wives of his sons with them, entered the ark, 14 they and every beast after its kind, and all the cattle after their kind, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth after its kind, and every bird after its kind, all sorts of birds. 15 So they went into the ark to Noah, by twos of all flesh in which was the breath of life. 16 Those that entered, male and female of all flesh, entered as God had commanded him; and the LORD closed it behind him. (NASU)
1. God shut the door on the ark. A simple lesson that a small child learns in a Bible class contains profound implications.
2. Those who were inside were safe inside because they were shut in by God – the flood waters could not touch them. Those who were outside were shut outside by God, and there was no hope on the outside.
3. Noah preached righteousness, but it was God who closed off all future opportunities to be saved! Hebrews 9:27 – 27 And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.
4. Jesus Himself presented the judgment of God as final. In the last days of His ministry He told a parable about 5 wise and 5 foolish virgins who were awaiting the arrival of a bridegroom for a wedding. Read Matthew 25:6-13 – 6 “And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ 7 Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the wise answered, saying, ‘No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ 10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. 11 “Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ 12 But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13 “Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.
II. The God of Noah’s Salvation – The other eternal characteristic that we notice about God here is seen in the salvation and character of Noah. Peter tells us in 2 Peter 2:5 that God “did not spare the ancient world… but saved Noah”. There are numerous lessons here.
- What was Noah saved from? – the most obvious answer would be the flood waters. He did not drown.
- Noah did get in the ark, and it floated, allowing him to ride out the flood. But it was God who brought the flood, and it was God who decided that Noah would survive it. Noah, then, was not a target of the flood: it was aimed at the ungodly. Noah was saved through God’s good pleasure. – Eph 1:4-6 – just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
- Understanding the absolute sovereignty of God over this event (He did just what He wanted to do) we might be able to say Noah did not NEED the ark to be saved, except in the fact that God commanded him to make it. Ultimately what he needed was faith. The question naturally arises: Why did God require Noah to build the ark and bring all those animals aboard? In a moment we will read about Noah in Hebrews 11. What it clear in that text is that God required Noah to build the ark as a demonstration of his faith. God could have prevented the flood from harming Noah by any means He chose, and He chose a method that would prove Noah s faith. God had determined that Noah would not be harmed by the flood because of his faith, and arranged a method of saving him wherein that faith would be confirmed in his obedience.
- As long as Noah remained faithful, there was no chance of the flood harming him.
- When we look back at Second Peter we find what it was that Noah was saved from:
- “..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;
- Peter does not describe Noah being saved from the water as much as him being saved from sinful world around him. (Lot was saved from the sinful conduct that vexed him) And the event that separated Noah from the wickedness around him was the flood.
A. God is merciful and values every person. Noah was not destroyed even though everyone else deserved to be punished. Noah found “grace” in the eyes of the Lord (Gen. 6:8). If anyone is saved it is because we find grace in God’s eyes.
B. God saved Noah because of his obedient faith. He expected Noah to respond in obedience. Noah was not saved by faith alone, but because he was obedient in every detail. Gen. 7:5 – And Noah did all that the Lord commanded.
1. Gen. 6:9 describes Noah as a man who “walked with God”. We generally recognize that this is not a literal description, but a depiction of an obedient lifestyle. But keep that image in your mind – God and Noah walking through the day side by side (Going every place together) – they agreed on things. Do you agree with God?
2. notice Hebrews 11:7 – 7 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.
a) We find that the phrase “by which” is important here. “by which he condemned the world”. To what does this refer? How did Noah condemn the world?
b) The answer is in vs. 7. He condemned the world by his faith. In fact the NIV translation makes this clear. 7 By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. (NIV)
c) but we cannot overlook that this same verse describes the obedient activity of Noah’s faith – “By faith” he “prepared” the ark and “condemned” the world.
3. There are some important insights to mention here.
a) Noah was able to condemn the world because God had already condemned the world. Noah was not just preaching a coming event, but a coming judgment. When he built the ark he was agreeing with God about the moral condition of the world and assigning blame for what was going to happen. When I preach and teach God’s word I condemn the world because He has already done it.
b) The Christian also condemns the world he lives in by faithful obedience. Do you condemn the world?
Conclusion: The God who judged the world in a worldwide flood and destroyed all the wickedness on the face of the earth was the same God who mercifully saved Noah and his family. When He saved Noah, He gave us all another chance.
- The Same God who saved Noah is the same God that will unreservedly destroy this world with fire in the future. 2 Peter 3:10-12 – But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. 11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?
- Knowing the character of God and promises of God, what manner of persons ought you to be? That is a legitimate question, and one that you need to answer.