May 14, 2018
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Scripture: Genesis 7: 1-5, When everything was ready, the Lord said to Noah, “Go into the boat with all your family, for among all the people of the earth, I can see that you alone are righteous. Take with you seven pairs—male and female—of each animal I have approved for eating and for sacrifice, and take one pair of each of the others. Also take seven pairs of every kind of bird. There must be a male and a female in each pair to ensure that all life will survive on the earth after the flood. Seven days from now I will make the rains pour down on the earth. And it will rain for forty days and forty nights, until I have wiped from the earth all the living things I have created.”
Observation: First, this is not a children’s story. Despite what nursery room decorations might have you believe, this is a story about human sin and God’s judgement. While we might be a bit shocked at how God “wiped from the earth all the living things” he created, this narrative is actually a hope-filled story. Other flood narratives from the same time period (there are several) typically speak of vengeful gods who despise people and are out to kill or maim most of humanity. Our God stands in stark contrast. He is a saving God (after all, a remnant of humans and all kind of animals remained, safe on an ark, during the worst storm that ever had or will occur). Our God has a mission that, despite humanity’s horrible sin, will prevail ultimately in the person of Jesus Christ.
Application: I’m most encouraged that as bad as things get (they were pretty bad in Noah’s day), as ugly and depraved as humanity was and still can be, God has a mission. Our God truly is a saving, redemptive God. John 3:16 says that “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” God knew on our own we just would keep messing up so he created a way in the person of Jesus for us to experience real salvation (not just being safe from a flood salvation but the kind that lasts forever!) And the Good News for us is that if we say yes to Jesus, salvation and eternal life actually begin now. The barrier of sin has been removed by the work of Christ and we have direct access to God. We can walk intimately, hand and hand, with God experiencing his love, peace, and joy – life abundant! While his mission won’t be fully complete until Jesus returns, we can rejoice that God’s mission has begun and we get to now be part of it as we work to reveal God’s Kingdom in this hurting and broken world.
Prayer: Thank you, God, for being a saving and redeeming God who loves us each so much. Thank you most of all for Jesus who has made a way for us to walk intimately with you. God, give us each the courage, motivation, and desire to be part of your mission – bringing more of heaven onto earth until Jesus comes in final victory! We love you. Amen.
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