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October 17, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Thus Noah did; according to all that God commanded him, so he did.”—Genesis 6:22 (NKJV)
Genesis Chapter 6 launches us into the history of Noah. We learn that mankind multiplied, was corrupted, and continued in corruption. We read how God was displeased with the condition of His people and determined to cleanse the violence of the earth “with the earth” (Genesis 6:13). And then we are introduced to Noah. He was a righteous man, without blame among his generation, and he walked with God (Genesis 6:9). Because Noah faithfully walked in reverent fear of God, God showed favor to Noah, saving both him and his family from the wrath to come.
This saving grace is where the ark comes into play. It’s also where Noah’s great faith is evidenced. If we look at the events chronologically, we first see how God warned Noah of the end to come; then He gave him a way out, then He told him what would happen. Noah had zero experience in anything like this; he had never seen rain and had no concept of what a flood was. He probably couldn’t fathom how this ark would hold 45,000 animals, eight people, and enough provisions for a year. However, for decades, Noah perseveringly labored to construct this vessel. Despite the cost and the ridicule of others, he endured with faith in God’s Word. Thus, Noah did . . . without question, without hesitation. He simply lived by faith doing a marvelous work.
Noah is a hallmark of what James proposes in his New Testament epistle. He essentially asks, “What good is it if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them?” (James 2:14). As if in answer to this question, the author of Hebrews writes, “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 is in keeping with faith” (Hebrews 11:7 NIV). In other words, real faith acts, and it’s a testimony to those who are watching.
Noah teaches us that faith isn’t only a state of being—it is proven when lived out. It’s a challenge above all that seems reasonable in this world. Granted, God may never ask you to build an ark, but faith isn’t proven by the size of the task, only the willingness of the heart to overcome any objections or ridicule, obediently doing what God has asked of us.
DIG: What was so commendable about Noah?
DISCOVER: How does Noah’s persevering faith and obedience to God speak to you in overcoming obstacles such as fear, doubt, or persecution?
DO: A famous quote says, “A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for” (J.A. Shedd). Are you playing it safe in the harbor or are you walking forward in what God has called you to build, do, or even say? Just as Noah completed his work, overcoming all objections and cost, so should we.
Lisa Supp lives in Utah and has served within the CCFL Web and Prayer Ministry since 2011. She also volunteers as an editor on the CCFL Prayer Wall and is a writer on the Communications Team. Retired from teaching, Lisa and her husband Ron volunteer at their local Calvary Chapel and share a passion for Scripture, apologetics, and education.