by Pastor Tim Burt
I'd assume most people have read the story of Noah's Ark. Even when I had never yet read the Bible, I knew that story from some place in my childhood. I was reading it with my granddaughter again this morning. It's actually one of the most amazing historical stories in all human history.
First of all, why did it even happen? It seems so brutal! It happened because evil was manifesting throughout the entire earth and in the live of almost all people. God knew it was not going to get better but, He is a God of mercy. God was trying to give the people that lived in the day, the freedom and opportunity to make right choices and live righteously. Over the 100 year time-period the ark being built, God was calling them to change. It was His offering of love and mercy and the opportunity to turn their evil hearts back to Him. But instead, they did just the opposite. With the exception of Noah and his family, the people had become ever more evil. God knew what only He could know. That despite His love and influence, they would not change. How can we know that's true—that they would never turn from evil? Because during the entire time-period that Noah built the arc, he preached to them of God's righteousness and called for them to turn from their sin. They never did and never would. And so God had to end it with a flood with only Noah and his family escaping. To this day, it's the most tragic event mankind has ever experienced. The only reason it hasn't happened again, is because Jesus paid the price for our unrighteousness that has washed the sins away of all those who would receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
I was thinking about the sign and promise that God left behind. You can be sure that Noah shared the story with those born after the flood—the new inhabitants of the earth. If they heard that God destroyed the earth with a flood, then every time it begin to rain, it could have created a wave of fear wondering if God was going to do it again. But, they didn't have to fear that. They didn't because God left a sign and a promise—the rainbow. He left it to remind and assure them that the earth would never be destroyed by a flood again.
Genesis 9:11-16 (NIV) "I establish my
covenant with you: Never again will all life be cut off by the waters of a
flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth." And God said, "This is the sign of the
covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a
covenant for all generations to come: I have set
my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and
the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the
earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I
will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every
kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it
and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of
every kind on the earth."
Whenever you see a rainbow, let it become a God moment. Be reminded that His promise given way back then is still being show to remind us of His promise reaching us today!
God has left us so many promises! Whether we see some kind of a sign or not, He wants them to bring us hope, promise, encouragement, and assurance! We don't need to overthink them. Just embrace them and let each one be like putting fresh batteries in our faith-pack—reminding us that His promises cannot fail. They freshen and strengthen our faith and remind us of His mercy and grace so we can turn from evil and begin to live for Him. In doing so, we can live confident lives assured of His love and participation in our life as we pray and seek Him. And so that we can experience the fullness of His peace and love through Jesus Christ our Lord, today!
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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