By Henry Mahan
Genesis 6 & 7
In the first chapter of Genesis (Gen. 1:31) God looked over the whole creation and saw that it was GOOD. In this sixth chapter (Gen. 6:5) God looked over creation and pronounced it evil. God in justice planned to destroy all mankind from the face of the earth (Gen. 6:7). But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Gen. 6:8). Though he would destroy all men (and justly so, for their evil), God made a covenant to preserve Noah and his family. Noah was not saved because of goodness and merit found in himself, but God was gracious to him in Christ. The judgment of the world was an act of God's wrath upon sin, and the salvation of Noah was an act of God's mercy through Christ.
Verse 9 says that Noah was a just man, upright, and walked with God; but his character was a result of the grace of God in him and not the cause of the grace of God to him (1 Cor. 15:10; Eph. 2:8-10). God was pleased to show mercy to Noah and pass by all the others (Rom. 9:11-16).
As Noah prepared the ark, he preached to his generation (1 Peter 3:18-22). They refused to hear, to repent, or to enter the ark. Yet Noah believed God; and when the ark was completed (before one drop of water fell) , he willingly entered the ark (Gen. 7:1, 5). There is a decree of God and an everlasting covenant of mercy in Christ ordaining the salvation of a number which no man can number. Christ calls them his 'sheep,' given him by the Father. They are redeemed by him and called to him by his Spirit: yet, like Noah, they hear, believe, and willingly come to Christ, their ark of safety. By faith they do enter into Christ. The rest of Adam's race, though warned, though preached to, and though commanded to repent and believe, will not enter (John 10:24-30).
The flood is not fiction: it is fact. The ark is not a myth; it is a fact. And as the means of deliverance from the judgment of God against sin for this man who found grace in the eyes of the Lord, the ark is a beautiful picture of our Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom we are delivered from God's eternal wrath against sin (John 3:35-36).
The ark was the only way of deliverance.
The whole world drowned; only those in the ark were saved.
The water stood high above the mountains (Gen. 7:17-21) so that no house, tree, building, nor mountain could serve as a refuge--only the ark.
Christ is the only Saviour (John 14:6; Acts 4:10-12; Isa. 53:4- 6). This is the theme of the whole scriptures that Christ is the Redeemer, the only Redeemer, and the sufficient Redeemer (1 John 5:10-13).
The ark was big enough for all who came (Gen. 6:15).
There was enough room for all the people and animals that God purposed to save, plus all the supplies they would need for the year they would spend aboard. Our Lord Jesus is a sufficient Redeemer for all who believe. There is nothing lacking in his obedience nor in his atonement.
'The cross on which Jesus died
Is a shelter in which we can hide:
And its grace so free is sufficient for me,
And deep is its fountain, as wide as the sea.'
He is able to do all that he promised (Rom. 4:21).
He is able to save to the uttermost all who come (Heb., 7:25).
He is able to keep that which we commit to him (2 Tim. 1:12).
He is able to keep us from falling (Jude 24-25).
He is able to raise us from the dead (Phil. 3:20-21).
The ark was a safe refuge able to survive the flood (Gen. 6:14).
It was pitched within and without, which made it safe from wind, water, and rain. None aboard would perish. The ark was designed by God and provided by God. How could it fail?
Even so, our Lord Jesus Christ is a sure foundation, a safe refuge, and a secure hiding-place. He cannot fail, nor can those perish for whom he died and for whom he intercedes (John 10:27-30; Rom. 8:38-39). Noah's safety and security did not depend on his seamanship but on the strength and durability of the ark. Even so, Christ himself is our hope.
The ark had but one door and one window.
There was but one door for the tall giraffe and the lowly snail.
Even so, Christ is the door. He said, 'By me if any man enter in he shall be saved;' one door for the rich and the poor, for the old and the young, for the Greek and the Jew.
The ark had but one window, and it was not provided for them to see out but for light to shine in. There is but one light-- Christ. He is the light of the world. The glory of God is seen in the face of Christ. He is our light and the revelation of the Father.
The ark brought them all safely through the flood (John 6:37- 45).
'Firm as his throne his gospel stands,
my Lord, my hope, my trust;
If I am found in Jesus' hands,
my soul can never be lost.
His honor is engaged to keep
the weakest of his sheep;
All that his heavenly Father gave,
His hands securely keep.
Nor death, nor hell shall ever remove
His people from his breast;
In the dear bosom of his love,
they shall forever rest.'