WHAT IF YOU HAD BEEN NOAH?
TEXT: Gen. 6:8-18
INTRO.: One of the best known accounts in the Bible is the story of
Noah and the flood. & it's not a myth, legend, or fairy tale. It's
presented as a historical narrative of what really happened. & God
preserved it in scripture for a purpose. In addition to containing
important information that's helpful in our general understanding of the
Bible, there are important lessons that we can learn from studying the
character and activities of Noah.
Looking at TEXT, I want to ask the question--TITLE.
I. 1st, Read vs. 8-10. If you were Noah, would you have found grace?
A. God's grace is absolutely essential to our being justified or being
saved from sin: Rom. 3:23-24, Eph. 2:8-9
B. God's grace is available to anyone and everyone who wants it: Tit.
2:11--but notice what God's grace does: vs. 12-14 (of course, God's grace
sent Jesus to give Himself for us..., but it also teaches us that....and
that we need to be purified as God's special people, zealous of good
C. Why did Noah receive God's grace? Text says that he was just or
righteous; he was perfect or complete; and he walked with God. In other
words, he lived according to what God had revealed to him. And that's
just what God expects us to do: 1 Jn. 1:1-7; to have God's grace is to be
in fellowship with Him; Noah walked with God and received His grace, and
we're told that if we walk in the light, we have fellowship with God.
Now when it says that Noah was perfect, it doesn't mean that he was
sinlessly perfect: v. 8; but it means that in walking with God he did
what was necessary to receive forgiveness of his sins, & we need to do
this too: v. 9. Again, God's grace is available to everyone, but the
only ones who actually receive it are those who meet God's conditions by
living according to His will (remember Noah was just or righteous: note 1
Jn. 3:7). Given the way that you're living, if you had been Noah, would
you have found grace?
II. 2nd, read vs. 11-14. If you were Noah, would you have built the ark?
A. God gave Noah a work to do--build an ark. Noah could have thought
about it and then said, "Lord, that's just too big a job; I can't do it"
and refused to begin--would he have been saved? God has given us a work
to do: Mk. 16:15-16. Sometimes when Christians look around at the world,
they say that it's too big a job and we can't do it. But the early
Christians did: Acts 5:41-42, 8:4--and that was in the face of opposition
without all the modern methods of transportation and communication that
we have. Yes, it's a big job, but God wants us to do what we can
B. Or Noah could have started to build the ark but later decided, with
all the lack of interest on the part of others and the ridicule that he
might have been subject to, that it just wasn't worth it and quitp; a lot
of people become Christians and start off on the strait and narrow path,
but they become discouraged along the way and just give up: 1 Cor. 15:58,
Gal. 6:9. To make sure that he and his family would be saved, Noah had
to keep on working; and if we want to reach our eternal goal of a home in
heaven, we have to keep pressing on, like Paul (Phil. 3:13-14)
C. Of course, we know what Noah did: Heb. 11:7; it wasn't easy & it
wasn't quick, but Noah did what God said and was able to enjoy the
result: 1 Pet. 3:20, 2 Pet. 2:5. So given the way that you're working
for the Lord now, if you had been Noah, would you have even built the
III. 3rd, read vs. 15-16. If you were Noah, would you have built the ark
as God said?
A. God gave Noah some very specific instructions as to how to build the
ark. What if Noah had said, "I don't think that 300 cubits is long
enough--I'm going to make it 500 cubits" or "I don't like the idea of a
window because it might let in too much rain, so I'll just eliminate
that." Would he have obeyed God? God has given us some very specific
instructions in His word pertaining to His church. For example, He's has
specified the organizational structure for each local church: Acts 14:23
& 20:28, Phil. 1:1, 1 Pet. 5:3-4--each congregation independent and
autonomous under its own plurality of elders. But men say that's not
effecient enough, so they invent denominational organizations to control
local churches, and have just one man as "pastor" in each congregation.
Is that following God's instructions?
B. Also, God has told us what kind of music He wants in worship: Eph.
5:19, Col. 3:16--congregational singing; but many people say, "We want
choirs to sing for our entertainment, and we want instrumental music to
accompany our singing." Is that obeying God?
C. And God has revealed what the work of His church should be: 1 Thes.
1:8, 1 Tim. 3:15. Purpose of church is to be pillar and support of
truth, so it's primary function is to sound forth word of Lord. However,
today many churches, even some claiming to be churches of Christ, feel
that they should minister to the needs of the whole man, so they provide
common meals, recreation, entertainment, and other forms of food, fun,
and frolic. Many human organizations and institutions which can meet the
social needs of mankind, but only the church was established by God to
meet the spiritual needs of mankind. When people take away from doing
God's work by doing these other works, is that doing what God says?
Given your attitude towards the organization, worship, and work of the
church, if you had been Noah, would you have built the ark just as God
IV. 4th, read vs. 17-18. If you were Noah, would you have led your
family into the ark?
A. God gave children parents for a reason: Deut. 6:5-7. Even though
Noah lived before this command was given, it's obvious that he taught His
children to love and respect God
B. Because God gave children parents for a reason, parents have a
responsibility to their children: Prov. 22:6. Too many parents just say
that children are free will agents (which is true), but they don't even
try to train them in the right way; rather their plan is simply to let
them choose for themselves when they're old enough. Yes, children will
ultimately have to make their own choices, but parents need to train them
so that they'll have the basis for making the right choice; Noah
apparently did that
C. Thus, God expects more out of parents than just providing food,
clothing, and shelter for their children: Eph. 6:4. Now, children may
grow up to make the wrong choice because there are many different
influences that bear upon their lives other than their parents; but that
doesn't relieve the parents of trying to the very best of their ability
to bring their children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. If
we don't make the effort, we can pretty well guaratee that they won't
grow up to serve God. In any event, Noah did a fairly good job. If
you'd been Noah, would you have tried to lead your children into the ark?
CONCL.: Not only did Noah save his family and in fact the entire
human race, but also he's a good example for us showing how we may live
so as to please God, receive His grace, and be saved. Again, God's grace
that brings salvation is available to everyone--but if you're not a
Christian, in order to receive it, you need to obey the gospel: 1 Pet.
By Wayne Walker based on an article by Greg Gwin
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