TEXT: Genesis 8:20-9:17
MESSAGE: A Reason For Faith
What is faith?
“Atheist Richard Dawkins defines religious faith as “blind.” In a debate with John Lennox, he said, “We only need to use the word ‘faith’ when there isn’t any evidence at all.” But in the Bible, “faith” means trust, not blind belief. We all put our trust in various things every single day. Every time we drive our car across a bridge, we trust it will hold up like it has many times before. We trust, not because we have 100 percent proof, but because we have good evidence to believe the bridge won’t collapse.” — Alissa Childers
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” – Hebrews 11:1
“By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” — Hebrews 11:7
(1) Who is Noah?
Genesis 6:8-10 — But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. 9 These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God. 10 And Noah had three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
(2) Did the flood really happen?
“Stories of a great ancient flood pervade the mythology of hundreds of cultures. Westerners might be most familiar with the story of Noah told in the Old Testament book of Genesis, but a great flood is reported in folklore from cultures around the world, from the Middle East to the Americas, India, China and Southern Asia to name just a few. An ancient Babylonian flood myth, the Epic of Gilgamesh, tells us a story analogous to that of Noah and his ark…While studying more than 200 flood myths, Creationist author James Perloff observed that a global flood was mentioned in 95 percent of the stories, people were saved in a boat in 70 percent and in 57 percent, the survivors found respite on a mountain. If these hundreds of flood myths from different locations and cultures around the world are any indication, something must have happened on Earth to spur these accounts. Could there have been a global flood? Scientists have a few theories to suggest that yes, perhaps, there was.” — Maria Trimarchi
QUESTION: What does it all mean?
Genesis 6:12: “And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth.”
Genesis 9:1: “And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth.”
And so, after the Flood, what is God speaking to us through the story of Noah? It’s threefold…(1. The Animosity 2. The Image 3. The Promise)
- The Animosity (v. 2-3)
“The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of the heavens, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they are delivered. 3 Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. And as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything.”
“Haven’t you ever noticed that when you come near the animals they growl at us, they bark at us, the birds screech at us and fly away? Do you know why? They know that we have a quarrel with their master.”
— George Whitfield
“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” — Psalm 19:1
“But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.” — Job 12:7-10
2. The Image (v. 5-6)
“5 And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man. 6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.”
3. The Promise (v. 8-13)
“Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, 9 “Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offspring after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the livestock, and every beast of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark; it is for every beast of the earth. 11 I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” 12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: 13 I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.
TAKEAWAYS: What can build our faith?
- Listen for the song of Creation
“Our Lord has written the promise of resurrection not in words alone, but in every leaf in springtime.” – Martin Luther
- Look for the Imago Dei in others
- Learn the meaning of grace