Hello and welcome to Word Alive with Dr Derek Stringer and my name is Brenda Critchley. It ‘s good to hold you with us as we explore God ‘s Word and allow it talk into our lives today.
Derek is our Bible Teacher. He travels to prophesy and learn the Bible far and broad. If he comes to a topographic point near you do run into up with him he would wish that.
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The current series is based on the history of Noah in Genesis. Jesus said that this is relevant for today and for our hereafter, so it ‘s of import material.
I ‘ll do a remark or cite a Bible from clip to clip as Derek explains today ‘s subject but for now, here ‘s Derek.
Many thanks Brenda, and yes, delight make acquire in touch with us either when I am in your country or by phone, electronic mail or missive here at our Ranskill office in the top terminal of Nottinghamshire. We do appreciate the encouragement of the contact with you.
We ‘re good on our manner through the unbelievable yearss of Noah
This narrative is so familiar that we may lose the importance of what God asked of Noah. Noah was asked to construct a vas that was 4 1/2 narratives high and every bit long as a football field and a half – even though he lived over 500 stat mis from any H2O! And harmonizing to some bookmans, it had ne’er rained before upon the Earth at that clip. So, here we have people who are wholly unfamiliar with H2O coming from the sky, or inundations, and Noah is constructing a large ship to drift off in. Can you conceive of how Noah explained that one to people?
So, non merely did God inquire Noah to construct this great vas for which there was no case in point, he had to make so in the thick of public ridicule. Surely, others must hold known him as “ brainsick Noah ” . I would n’t be surprised if households going on holiday would do it a point to drive by and see the adult male who was constructing something “ God told him to construct ” .
How do you believe that scenario would be played out if it happened today? Let ‘s take a expression and see.
The Lord spoke to Noah and said: “ I ‘m traveling to do it rain until the whole Earth is covered with H2O and all the evil people will be destroyed. But I will salvage you and your household, and two of every sort of populating thing on the planet. I am telling you to construct Me an Ark. ” And God gave Noah the specifications for an Ark.
“ OK, ” said Noah, trembling in fright and fumbling with the designs.
Then the Lord said, “ Six months, and it starts to rain, so you ‘d break acquire a move on, Noah. ”
Six months passed. The skies began to overcast up and rain began to fall. The Lord saw that Noah was sitting in his front pace, merely looking at this immense stack of timber. But the Lord saw no Ark.
The Lord shouted, “ Noah! Where is my Ark? ”
“ Lord, delight forgive me! ” begged Noah. “ I did my best. But there were large jobs. First I had to acquire a edifice license for the Ark ‘s building, and your programs did n’t run into the local fire codification. So I had to engage an applied scientist to redraw the programs. Then, my neighbors objected, claiming I was go againsting zoning by constructing the Ark in my front pace, so I had to acquire a discrepancy from the metropolis planning committee.
Then I had a large job acquiring plenty wood for the Ark because there was a prohibition on cutting trees in order to salvage some sort of bird of Minerva. I had to convert Fish and Wildlife people that I needed the wood to salvage the bird of Minerva. But they would n’t allow me catch any bird of Minerva. Then the carpenters formed a brotherhood and went out on work stoppage. I had to negociate with them before anyone would pick up a proverb or a cock.
When I started garnering up animate beings, an carnal rights group sued me. Then, the authorities got involved and wanted to cognize where I got the money for the timber. Now I ‘m seeking to decide a ailment from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission over how many people I ‘m supposed to engage. And on top of all that the Tax Man seized all my assets claiming I ‘m seeking to avoid paying revenue enhancements by go forthing the state.
Noah ‘s society was corrupt, and so is ours today. And all during this clip of edifice, Noah is prophesying to the people. He preached but no 1 responded. But Noah continued making what God called him to make. He trusted God ‘s Word and God ‘s promise. And that ‘s what made him a adult male of religion.
Think about what happened as a consequence of this one adult male. Noah was able to salvage his household, and because of what he did, he saved humanity itself! I want you to detect that Noah was able to carry through all this, non because he was excessively capable or excessively smart – but he was faithful plenty to make what God wanted him to make.
I want you to understand that this is non merely a narrative about what happened long ago. God is still utilizing persons today to make His work. He may non inquire you to construct an Ark in your front pace, but He will name you to be faithful to Him.
He may inquire you to take a fiscal hazard in order to make others. There have been many people over the old ages that have come to your church necessitating hard currency, and at that place have been many who have answered the door who have dug into their ain billfolds to run into that demand.
He might inquire you to make things for Him when others fight against it, and He might inquire you to allow person falsely accuse you, and so to demo them nil but love in return, because you are more concerned with what they feel than what you feel.
He may even inquire you to pick up your cross and follow Him – even if you have to travel off and leave everyone you love and every thing you find comfy.
My married woman Pauline and I have moved several times and it ‘s been hard to make, but something that you ne’er think about non making. Equally difficult as it is to make that, it is one of the most fulfilling approvals a individual can hold in life. If God of all time calls you to “ travel and make ” , my encouragement to you is to merely “ GO AND DO ” .
One individual can do a difference. You can do a difference ; if you will allow God utilize you. But you must retrieve some things. Remember that God is non looking for flawlessness or endowment. He is looking for willing Black Marias. God does non name the qualified – He qualifies the called.
Before God can utilize you for His land, you must be F.A.T. You must be Faithful in following Him. You must be Available to follow Him. And, you must be Teachable so you can follow Him.
God will set the chances in forepart of those who are willing to accept them. But there is ever a forfeit involved. To step frontward for God, you must be willing to step out of where you are now. You can non stand in one topographic point and travel frontward, can you?
God is looking for those who will make bold to swear Him as Noah did ; person willing to make what He says to make. I personally think it is clip that we start allowing God usage us, because we have all used Him excessively long.
When we decide to allow God steer us, it is non a determination to be made lightly. It is the deepest of committednesss. God is non looking for the weak ; He is looking for that which is solid and strong. He is non looking for those who will speak aloud, but those who will speak boldly. He is merely looking for ordinary people who are willing to swear in a really great God.
You are listening to Word Alive with Derek Stringer. If you are able to follow along in a Bible, with today ‘s message we ‘ve reached Genesis 9
I merely want to add here that there is strong HISTORICAL grounds back uping the inundation.
Make you cognize that archeologists have discovered 250 different inundation fables from 250 different antediluvian civilizations.
There are 33 primary antediluvian civilizations that have been discovered:
33 of 33 have a inundation tradition.
31 of 33 have a common tradition that the inundation was globally destructive.
32 of 33 say adult male was someway divinely saved in the inundation.
30 of 33 say there was some sort of particular proviso made for the animate beings.
25 of 33 describe an Ark or boat landing on top of a mountain.
29 of 33 describe a bird being sent from the boat to happen land.
30 of 33 describe a colored arch as a symbol of godly favor.
31 of 33 say the first thing the people did when they landed on dry land is to idolize God…
I SHOULD Think SO!
Now, allow ‘s say you are a newsman assigned by your editor to cover Noah ‘s inundation. It ‘s the biggest narrative of the ancient universe, and it ‘s your narrative. So you research it and you write it up. When it ‘s done, you turn it in, the editor reads it, and pays you the ultimate compliment, “ Let ‘s run this on page 1. ” Then he asks a inquiry you have n’t thought approximately. “ What ‘s the headline? ” You pause, sing the inquiry carefully. After all, the inundation has so many angles, so many astonishing parts to it. How will you sum it all up in merely a few gripping words?
Keep that thought for merely a minute. A few old ages ago a Television programme invited a panel of distinguished rabbis, curates and bookmans from assorted Fieldss to assist him discourse the modern-day significance of the events recorded in Genesis. When they came to the episode about the inundation, the panel was asked the same inquiry I merely asked: What headline would you compose if you were covering the great inundation of Noah ‘s twenty-four hours?
One panelist suggested this headline: “ God Destroys World in Flood. ”
Another panelist, a curate, suggested something wholly different: “ God Gives Humans a Second Opportunity. ”
Who was closer to the truth? From one point of view, the first headline was biblically and historically accurate. God did destruct the universe with a inundation. That ‘s a fact. It ‘s besides a really attention-getting headline. Probably non many of us would hold thought of the 2nd suggestion about God giving worlds a 2nd opportunity. It does n’t catch the play of the Ark, the inundation, and the decease of a civilization. And it ‘s non about as exciting. But on a really deep degree, it does convey us to the bottom line of the narrative. After the floodwaters receded, after the animate beings left the Ark, and after Noah and his household stood on dry land once more, God did so give humanity a 2nd opportunity.
And that ‘s the message we find in Genesis 9. Once the inundation is over, Noah and his household have the undertaking of get downing all over once more.
As we go through this transition, maintain in head that it ‘s all about God. He ‘s the lone individual who speaks or Acts of the Apostless. Noah does n’t state a thing and he does n’t make a thing. God is the topic, the histrion, the instigator. He establishes a new beginning, puts forth a new bid, and gives a new promise. If we pay attending, we will detect critical rules sing the possibility of religious reclamation in every age and in any state of affairs.
“ Then God blessed Noah and his boies, stating to them, ‘Be fruitful and increase in figure and make full the Earth. The fright and apprehension of you will fall upon all the animals of the Earth and all the birds of the air, upon every animal that moves along the land, and upon all the fish of the sea ; they are given into your custodies. Everything that lives and moves will be nutrient for you. Merely as I gave you the green workss, I now give you everything ‘ . ”
If the first poetry sounds familiar, that ‘s because it ‘s a repetition of what God said to Adam and Eve in Genesis 1:28.
This is Eden wholly over once more. God committees Noah and his household to distribute out across the Earth and re-establish human civilization.
Noah is to go the patriarch of a huge kin that will finally ramify out to organize all the assorted folks and states on Earth. Just as Adam was caput of the human race in the beginning, Noah is now the caput of the reconstituted human race after the inundation. Everything flows from him through his three boies. And now God adds one important permission: Worlds are given permission to utilize animate beings for nutrient. Obviously before the inundation, everyone was a vegetarian. But now it is allowable to run animate beings for nutrient and to raise animate beings for meat.
There is a critical religious truth underlying these poetries. God will non be defeated by human wickedness, non even by wickedness every bit gross as the immorality that brought on the inundation.
Your wickedness may look ( from a human point of position ) to impede God ‘s program, it may look to detain it for yearss or months or old ages or even for coevalss, but in the terminal, God ‘s will is traveling to be done. What God has spoken must come to go through. No evil done by work forces can queer the programs of the Almighty. Has he non talk? Will he non make it? Who dares to stand against him? Some may make bold, but none can win.
This truth is enormously encouraging because it gives us hope when we have messed up like kings. We may inquire, and may in secret believe, that God is through with us because of our wickedness. “ I ‘ve sinned excessively much. God will ne’er give me another opportunity. ” Those who say that know excessively much about their wickedness and excessively small about their God.
Isaiah 55:7 contains a fantastic invitation to those who feel their wickedness is excessively great to be forgiven: “ Let the wicked abandon his manner and the evil adult male his ideas. Let him turn to the Lord, and he will hold mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely excuse. ” The King James translates the last phrase- ” he will copiously excuse. ” I like that because that ‘s exactly what I need.
When I stray, when I fall, when I make a muss of my life, I need a God who will “ copiously ” excuse me. With God there is ever the possibility of a new beginning.
“ But you must non eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. And for your lifeblood I will certainly demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animate being. And from each adult male, excessively, I will demand an accounting for the life of his fellow adult male. Whoever sheds the blood of adult male, by adult male shall his blood be shed ; for in the image of God has God made adult male. As for you, be fruitful and increase in figure ; multiply on the Earth and increase upon it. ”
In these poetries Noah now learns the “ regulations of the game. ” If God is traveling to get down over once more, Noah needs to cognize what regulations to follow. These poetries tell us there is fundamentally merely one rule- ” Respect Life. ” Everything flows from that.
That regulation is applied in two sub-rules.
First, do n’t eat living animate beings. That ‘s the significance of poetry 4, which sounds unusual to our ears. In order to understand it, we should possibly add the word “ pulsating ” after the word “ lifeblood. ” Since God now gives permission to eat animate beings for nutrient, he adds the limitation that they must foremost be put to the decease and the blood drained from them. This would look to be good advice in any instance. It ‘s really hard to eat a steak while it is still attached to a life cow. And even harder to eat populating porc chops. This text anticipates the ulterior scriptural direction that the life of the flesh is in the blood.
The blood carries the pulsation of life. When Medics arrive at the scene of an accident, one of the first things they do is to look into for a pulsation. If they get a pulsation, they know the individual is alive. The point of first killing the animate being, run outing the blood, and so eating it is to demo regard for God who gave life in the first topographic point.
The 2nd sub-rule is really relevant to our twenty-four hours: Murderers should be put to decease. This is the field significance of poetries 5-6. If a adult male sheds the blood of another adult male, by the manus of adult male his ain blood will be shed. Life for life. If you kill, you will be killed. If you murder, you will be put to decease. If you show such discourtesy for human life that you murder it, so you have forfeited your right to your ain life. The ground given for this regulation is important. Verse 6 says it is because adult male is made in the image of God.
Think about what that means:
Every male child and every miss.
Every female parent, every male parent.
Every uncle, every aunt.
Every gramps, every grandma.
Every friend, every enemy.
Every neighbor, every familiarity.
Every colleague, every schoolmate.
Everyone we know, everyone we meet, everyone in the whole universe is made in the image of God. To set it stronger, God made each one of them in his ain image. He stamped all of us and each of us with his Godhead image. We were each created with the ability to cognize God, to love him, and to function him. We were made with an interior desire to cognize our Creator. That separates us everlastingly from the Canis familiariss and cats and mules and redbreasts and beetles and coneies and giants and goffers and Pan troglodytess. Those animals are animals. Nothing more and nil less. But worlds are made in God ‘s image. That makes each one of us alone and valuable and worthy of regard and honor and protection. And that image of God means that human life is valuable inside the uterus, from the really minute of construct.
How dare anyone slaying another individual made in God ‘s image? If you do, God takes it earnestly. He will non bury it or overlook it or pardon it or go through it off as a dense error. And he wo n’t state, “ Boys will be boys ” or “ She deserved it ” or “ Let ‘s all be friends. ” No! God says, “ If you murder, you deserve to decease. ”
This is the scriptural foundation for capital penalty. We all understand that God is the beginning of life. He entirely has the right to give life or to take it off. But in this transition God delegates to human authorization the right to take life in certain fortunes. Subsequently on in the Old Testament God will stipulate certain fortunes where the decease punishment is justified. The decease punishment was prescribed for slaying, working on the Sabbath, cussing your male parent or female parent, criminal conversation, colza and snatch.
It should be observed that each of these offenses constitutes an assault on God ‘s Law, or on one of God ‘s establishments ( such as matrimony and the household ) , or upon a individual created in God ‘s image.
To discourse this issue in deepness would take an full message, but suffice it to state that I am non cognizant of any transition in the remainder of the Bible that contradicts, naturals, nullifies what is said in Genesis 9.
The rule laid down 1000s of old ages ago is still in force today. Romans 13:4 Tells us that when a civil authorization ( justice, police officer, soldier, etc ) acts to continue righteousness and to penalize sinners, he does non bear the blade in vain. That blade of punishment-which includes capital punishment-is portion of God ‘s opinion against those who do evil, and particularly against those who take guiltless human life.
If you ask me, “ Would I wish to see Capital Punishment back on the jurisprudence books in my state. ” The reply would be, ‘No! ‘ I think we have moved a long manner from the general scriptural criterions set out for a new state in the Bible. These are problematic points and I do n’t desire us acquiring off from the chief message. Peoples made in the image of God are to be valued really extremely so. That ‘s the chief point.
God made a fantastic promise at this clip of new beginnings.
If you attended Sunday School as a kid, you already know the promise and the mark:
The Promise: God promised ne’er once more to deluge the full Earth.
The Pledge: God placed a rainbow in the sky as the mark of his promise.
In theological footings, this is the first great compact of the Bible, the Noahic Covenant. It is of import for several grounds:
First, it is an unconditioned compact. That is, there are no conditions to be met by us. God did n’t state, “ If you obey me, I promise ne’er to deluge the Earth once more, ” or “ If you offer a forfeit, I promise ne’er to deluge the Earth once more. ” To the contrary, God asks nil of the human race. No obeisance, no forfeit, no religion, no supplication. Nothing at all. This is n’t a bipartisan street where we do something and so God does something in response. This is a promise made by God in malice of the fact that the universe had merely been destroyed because of wickedness, and in full cognition that the universe was shortly to immerse back into the cavity of wickedness.
( As we will see in the following message, it is Noah the adult male of religion who will take the parade in the incorrect way. ) This is a compact of pure grace, made in malice of human wickedness, non because of any supposed human goodness or human religion or human obeisance. In malice of our go oning wickedness, God promises ne’er once more to destruct the full human race with a inundation.
Grace greater than our wickedness.
Second, it is a covenant guaranteed with a mark. We have tended to sentimentalize this portion of the narrative, and for good ground. Rainbows are beautiful, and it ‘s easy to believe that this is merely a sweet touch. But it ‘s far more than that. Rainbows occur all over the universe, therefore doing the mark available to the same extent as the inundation itself. Rainbows are a startling phenomenon. When you see a rainbow, the natural impulse is to indicate it out to person else. Rainbows display their colorss across the full spectrum of visible radiation, covering all possible sunglassess and chromaticities. Here is a mark absolutely fitted for the full human race, at all times, in every location. And it is a mark easy understood by all ages.
The text tells us that when we see a rainbow, we are to believe, “ God promised ne’er once more to direct a inundation upon the full Earth. ” And when God sees a rainbow, it reminds him of the promise he freely made to us.
Think about this rainbow promise.
Notice what the text does non state. Nowhere does God state, “ I will ne’er direct a storm once more. ” Nowhere does God assure that life will be free of storms, tests, problems and troubles. Most rainbows appear merely after the storm has come and gone. If there were no storms, there would be really few rainbows.
The message to us is obvious. God ne’er promises a life free from hurting and agony. As the vocal says, he ne’er promised us a rose garden. Or if he did, the roses have irritants. That ‘s life in a fallen universe. There are inundations and fires and twisters. And there are wars and dearths and terrorist onslaughts. We ‘re all cognizant that this is n’t a safe universe, that we all live on the forepart lines, and that immorality is all around us. No 1 is immune from disease. And bad intelligence is merely a phone call off.
The rainbows come after the rain, non earlier. Crying endures for a dark, joy comes in the forenoon. We know that all things work together for good, and we know that the “ all things ” must include cryings and agony, unreciprocated inquiries, and minutes of choler, panic and unhappiness.
And even when we quote those celebrated words of Joseph in Genesis 50:20, when he tells his brothers, “ You meant it for immorality but God meant it for good, ” we must gain that you ca n’t acquire to the last phrase without traveling through the first phrase.
I take from this a familiar truth. God will give us more than we can bear, but ne’er more than He can bear as He sustains us. The human race ca n’t bear another universe broad inundation so God wo n’t direct one. And the rainbow proves his promise. But there will still be many storms along the manner, cryings aplenty, and much unhappiness. And if we look up, we will see God ‘s rainbows, the marks and items of his love, here and at that place along the manner, reminding us that the storms of life do non intend that things are out of control. The rainbow teaches us that everything is under God ‘s control.
As I stand back and expression at this transition from a distance, the last phrase of Habakkuk 3:2 comes to mind. It ‘s a supplication by the prophesier as he considers the agony of his ain people. Although they have sinned greatly and their opinion is deserved, he prays that it will come to an terminal. He frames his ideas in a few simple words: “ In wrath remember clemency. ”
Possibly that is a good sum-up of this transition. In wrath God remembered clemencies. In wrath God ever remembers clemency.
When he Judgess, it is to sublimate and to train, non to destruct. And sooner or later, his clemency will be seen. And it is after the wrath is over that his clemency is most clearly displayed.
And that brings me back to the “ headline inquiry. ”
The more I think about it, the more I like the 1 that says, “ God Gives Humans a Second Opportunity. ” I like it because that ‘s what Genesis 9 is all about. And I like it because that ‘s what we need.
Come to believe of it, I like it because that ‘s what I need. And I need that 2nd opportunity every twenty-four hours.
And wrath. Yes.
And times of adversity and trouble. Yes, for all of us.
But clemency. Yes!
A 2nd opportunity. Yes!
And the rainbow after the rain. Yes!
In wrath God ever remembers clemency.
Two other ideas fill the head as we bring this message to a stopping point.
First, the opinion and the clemency both come from God.
It ‘s non as if the Satan sent the inundation but God sent the rainbow. Oh no. God himself sent the awful opinion of the inundation. He is the 1 who sent the rain and opened up the fountains of the deep. He is the 1 who ordained that the universe of that twenty-four hours should die. And he is the 1 who after the inundation showed his clemency in giving the human race a 2nd opportunity and in doing the promise and vouching it with a rainbow.
Second, without the opinion the clemency would non look as merciful.
The rainbow is beautiful ever, but the promise is more glorious because of the inundation that preceded it.
Three times God says, “ Never once more! ” He truly meant it. Never once more will at that place be a universe broad inundation. Mercy is still mercy but mercy radiances of all time brighter, like a diamond set against black velvet, when seen against the background of God ‘s righteous opinion.
The application moves in many waies, all of them promoting to us.
First, there is a word here to recidivists.
That ‘s an old word, is n’t it? A recidivist is a Christian who has drifted off from the Lord. You love the Lord but the attentions of this universe and the enticements of life have put you in a bad topographic point, far from the witting presence of God.
Today you are under the cloud of opinion, guilt, and deep inner unhappiness. Thingss are non right and you know it. Possibly you feel so defeated that you wonder if things can of all time be different.
Here is good intelligence. If you will return to the Lord, the clouds will portion, the Sun will reflect, and overhead you will happen the rainbow of God ‘s clemency. Why live in the “ far state ” of wickedness when you as a kid of God can banquet at the Father ‘s tabular array?
Second, there is good intelligence for evildoers.
Your wickedness, no affair what it is, has already been judged. The Day of Judgement happened 2,000 old ages ago when Jesus died on the cross for you. His blood is so powerful that it paid in full the monetary value for all your wickednesss.
Your wickednesss were judged at the cross.
Today is the twenty-four hours of clemency.
Come to the cross. Or better yet, run to the cross!
“ Mercy there was great and grace was free,
Pardon there was multiplied to me,
There my burdened psyche found autonomy,
At Calvary. ”
It is no happenstance that when John saw the vision of Eden in Revelation 4, he saw a rainbow encircling the throne of God. That symbolises the completeness of God ‘s clemency. The blood of Jesus has transformed the throne of God from a throne of opinion into a throne of clemency.
If you come to Jesus, you will non be turned away. His blood will salvage you. The rainbow promise guarantees that God ‘s clemency is for you. And for all of us who labour under heavy loads and deep personal sorrows, this promise is for us, excessively. Look up and you will see the rainbow, the mark that God has non forgotten you.
Dr Derek Stringer has been taking us through the 4th message in a series of five we ‘re naming Lesson From A Rainbow.
In the following edition of Word Alive we ‘ll come back once more to the events that happened back in Noah ‘s twenty-four hours and we ‘ll see it ‘s relevancy to our ain twenty-four hours.
I ‘m Brenda Critchley and our Bible Teacher has been Dr Derek Stringer.
This is a Good News Broadcasting Association production.