I’ve made it a goal to sit down at least once a week, read one chapter of the Bible, and pull out as much as I can from it, to see what God has taught me and to find out what he’s going to teach me next.
Today, I’m reading chapter 7 of Genesis.
The Lord then said to Noah, “Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.” –Genesis 7:1 (NIV84)
Noah’s sons were about 100 years old at this time. As a family, they’ve watched the world completely turn against God. The entirety of the world’s population decided not to follow God anymore.
And so, when Noah started building a giant boat and collecting animals because a huge flood was coming, everyone must have thought him crazy.
But he was faithful to do what God told him to, and was blessed for it. As Christians, God asks we do a lot of things that the world deems crazy or wrong, but God is pretty clear on what is right and wrong. If we do what the Lord asks, even if we are mocked or persecuted, we will always be blessed.
Every living thing on the face of the earth was wiped out; men and animals and the creatures that move along the ground and the birds of the air were wiped from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those with him in the ark. The waters flooded the earth for a hundred and fifty days. –Genesis 7:23-24 (NIV84)
In children’s books, we see Noah as a happy man who obeyed God and lived happily ever after. But the reality is much more grim.
This was not a pleasant story. God, knowing that the whole of the world had made their decision, a decision that would never change, made the decision to start over. Which meant death for everyone except Noah’s family.
I cannot image flood rains coming and water rising from springs for 40 days. I cannot image the thoughts that ran through the minds of everyone who chose not to believe. God had given them their whole lives and then, once he decided to flood the Earth, he delayed and gave them another 120 years to turn back to him, but no one did.
It’s heart-breaking. It’s tough to fully understand. It is not a happy story. And I know that this must have weighed heavily on Noah. He must have had friends, and I’m sure he tried to convince many people to come with him on the boat.
Noah and his family were on that boat for about 5 months. I know the heaviness of reality would have given me pause constantly.
In Genesis 7, we find that God often asks us to do things the world would deem crazy in order to ultimately bless us and those around us, and we find that God himself has made tough decisions to maintain righteousness on Earth, but often in ways that are hard for us to understand.