Destruction and Deliverance, Pt. 2 – Genesis 7

Destruction and Deliverance pt. 2
Genesis 7
I invite you now to join me in God’s precious Word as we delve into what He has prepared for us.
We have come to Genesis 7 in the study we have called back to the beginning. These inspired words from God through Moses speak powerfully to our lives today.
They give us a crystal-clear look in 2 directions- at God’s holiness, and man’s sinfulness. And friends, like water and fire, those are incompatible. God whose eyes are to pure to look upon evil, and the fact that we are sinners.
For a just God cannot let any sin go unpunished.
Yet so gloriously, watch how against the dark backdrop of judgement shines the mercy of God.
Genesis 7 Then the LORD said to Noah, “Enter the ark, you and all your household, for you alone I have seen to be righteous before Me in this time. 2 “You shall take with you of every clean animal by sevens, a male and his female; and of the animals that are not clean two, a male and his female; 3 also of the birds of the sky, by sevens, male and female, to keep offspring alive on the face of all the earth. 4 “For after seven more days, I will send rain on the earth forty days and forty nights; and I will blot out from the face of the land every living thing that I have made.” 5 Noah did according to all that the LORD had commanded him. 6 Now Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of water came upon the earth. 7 Then Noah and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him entered the ark because of the water of the flood. 8 Of clean animals and animals that are not clean and birds and everything that creeps on the ground, 9 there went into the ark to Noah by twos, male and female, as God had commanded Noah. 10 It came about after the seven days, that the water of the flood came upon the earth. 11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened. 12 The rain fell upon the earth for forty days and forty nights. 13 On the very same day Noah and Shem and Ham and Japheth, the sons of Noah, and Noah’s wife and the three wives of his sons with them, entered the ark,14 they and every beast after its kind, and all the cattle after their kind, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth after its kind, and
every bird after its kind, all sorts of birds. 15 So they went into the ark to Noah, by twos of all flesh in which was the breath of life. 16 Those that entered, male and female of all flesh, entered as God had commanded him; and the LORD closed it behind him. 17 Then the flood came upon the earth for forty days, and the water increased and lifted up the ark, so that it rose above the earth. 18 The water prevailed and increased greatly upon the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. 19 The water prevailed more and more upon the earth, so that all the high mountains everywhere under the heavens were covered. 20 The water prevailed fifteen cubits higher, and the mountains were covered. 21 All flesh that moved on the earth perished, birds and cattle and beasts and every swarming thing that swarms upon the earth, and all mankind; 22 of all that was on the dry land, all in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, died. 23 Thus He blotted out every living thing that was upon the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky, and they were blotted out from the earth; and only Noah was left, together with those that were with him in the ark. 24 The water prevailed upon the earth one hundred and fifty days.
From this dramatic account, God displays His just destruction and merciful deliverance.
Final orders 1-4
Full obedience 5-9, 13-16
Ferocious waters 10-12, 17-20
Fatal end 21-24
Before God unleashes the Flood, He gives Noah
1. Final orders 1-4
He speaks to him as one would to protect a friend from danger: “Enter the ark, you and all your household.”
Remember, Noah had just finished building the ark according to God’s instructions. That massive construction project would have taken him and his son decades.
The last tree has now been cut down and wooden beams sealed with pitch inside and out on that gigantic wooden barge that was 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet tall.
Don’t forget. God had previously told Noah the purpose of that ark and what was coming.
Gen. 6:17 “Behold, I, even I am bringing the flood of water upon the earth, to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, from
under heaven; everything that is on the earth shall perish.”
But why were Noah and his family exempted from being destroyed?
God told Him, “Genesis 7:1, “for you alone I have seen to be righteous before Me in this time.”
He was righteous (tsadiyk)- honest, just, and obedient to God.
A life of doing what was right before God- that’s what caused Noah to stand out from all the rest.
We need to glance back at Gen. 6:9. O that God would see us like this: “Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his time; Noah walked with God.”
Remember, Enoch, Noah’s great grandfather Enoch. He is the only other man of whom we are told, he walked with God. And God loved fellowship with him so much, He brought him straight to heaven. Just skipped death!
And now Noah, a righteous man who also walked with God, has a mission to complete.
God tells him to get in the ark. But not alone. For that would have marked the end of history!
God rehearses that Noah was to bring with him his household and animals.
For most of the animals, it was to be a pair, one male and one female. And the purpose God says- to “keep offspring alive on the face of all the earth.”
So it is, every species we have today in our world has a line that reaches all the way back to those animal pairs on the ark.
Critics of God and His truth say, “impossible.” Yet true believers take God at His Word! By the way, conservative estimates suggest all the created species on earth would have been represented with 16,000 land animals and birds on the ark.
And 100,000 square feet of room on that great boat would have accommodated nearly 8 times that number!
What’s clear is this. God chose to preserve all those animals of His creation- and we can enjoy that design and beauty in our day.
Yet now God specifies for Noah, that clean animals were to be taken by sevens. So picture 3 pairs with one extra.
Now how does Noah know which animals were clean and which were not? He didn’t say, “Let’s see, these pigs are covered with mud, so they’re unclean. Yet these white doves, they will belong in the clean category.
No, what distinguished clean and unclean animals was 2 things- their being fit for sacrifice and for eating.
Yet here’s what’s amazing. God didn’t give that distinction until hundreds of years later under Moses (recorded in Lev. 11 and Deut. 14).
This shows us that Noah had a God-given sense of which animals were appropriate for sacrifice. So, he brings extras of those clean animals.
And the first thing Noah does when he exists the ark was to build an altar. He takes 1 from every clean animal and bird and presents them as burnt offerings to God (9:20).
Well, the boarding call is given. “Noah, get yourself, your family, with animals by twos as well as 7 of the clean animals. It’s time to board.”
How does Noah respond to the final orders? With
2. Full obedience 5-9, 13-16
What we see in verse 5 is so refreshing.
For it does not say “Noah did most of what the LORD had commanded him.”
No, he did according to ALL, 100%, nothing left out, of what God had commanded Him.
Now that should sound familiar to you.
Because remember Gen. 6:22, his response to building and outfitting the ark: “Thus Noah did; according to all that God had commanded him, so he did.”
Yes, he listened to God’s word, and he obeyed.
Friends, God places Noah before us once again as an example of obedience to emulate.
For mark this well on the tablet of your heart: the path to a blessed life is obedience.
When the children of Israel crossed the Jordan into the Promised Land, the Levitical priests declared to them the blessings they should expect from obedience and the curses from disobedience.
Deuteronomy 28:1–2 “Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the LORD your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. 2 “All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the LORD your God.”
It’s not complicated. To obey God, you choose to do not what others around you are doing, now what your flesh feels like doing. You make up your mind do what God tells you do.
How do you know what He wants of you? You read His Word, you study it and then with full reliance on Him, you choose the way of obedience.
No, it’s not cranking out deeds to try to impress God.
The starting point of a life that obeys God is finding what Noah did: Gen. 6:9, “But Noah found favor (that’s grace) in the eyes of the Lord.”
That comes through faith that turns from sin and self to Christ as Lord and Savior.
Then it is you get a new heart that loves to obey.
Friends, does that describe you? Is the great desire of your heart to please God?
Do you enjoy doing the things He has called you to do?
Do you love to talk with God as your closest friend?
Do you love to boast of Him to others?
Do you love to think about God and thank God throughout the day?
You see those who truly know God no longer love to sin but love to please Him.
That’s what Paul saw in the Roman Christians which caused him to rejoice saying: “But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, and having been freed from
sin, you became slaves of righteousness.” Romans 6:17-18
Would you observe Noah’s careful obedience? Verse 7: “Then Noah and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him entered the ark because of the water of the flood.”
People on board? Check. And the animal passengers? Check!
V. 8- “Of clean animals and animals that are not clean and birds and everything that creeps on the ground, 9 there went into the ark to Noah by twos, male and female, (AND THERE IT IS AGAIN), as God had commanded Noah.”
Friends, from building to boarding the ark, Noah did exactly what God told him to
Yes, obedience is a big deal to God. And it should be a big deal to us.
Doing what God wants you to do in every situation, big or little, that pleases God.
Now drop down to verse 13 where we see God detailing for us Noah’s faithfulness to obey.
“On the very same day Noah and Shem and Ham and Japheth, the sons of Noah, and Noah’s wife and the three wives of his sons with them, entered the ark.”
8 and only 8 people boarded that ark? Why them?
Because God chose them. He gave them the faith to believe His word and get on the ark.
Then after Noah and his family, came the long line of animals.
We are told (v. 14) that included “every beast after its kind, and all the cattle after their kind, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth after its kind, and every bird after its kind, all sorts of birds.”
Here’s what I love about this. There wasn’t randomness, no confusion but order in those thousands of animals getting on.
It’s like all in zone 1, wild beast- bears, apes, and lions, time to board.
Next, zone 2, cattle, horses, cows, zebras get ready.
Those needing less leg room in the cabin, lizards, frogs, worms, you’re next.
And then ducks, hummingbirds, turkeys, eagles and every other kind of bird, you’re last.
What’s important is that there was order.
“So they went (v. 15) into the ark to Noah, by twos of all flesh in which was the breath of life.”
Not 1 person and not 1 animal was left behind that was intended to be on the ark.
They all got on just as God had told whom? Noah.
Look at the final report: v. 16- “Those that entered, male and female of all flesh, entered as God had commanded him; and the LORD closed it behind him.”
Here again, highlighted for us is the obedience of Noah.
The boarding of the ark may have ended with a loud thud. For God, with a father’s protective hand, closed the door of the ark.
In so doing, He shows He is the sovereign director behind it all. He affirmed His blessing on Noah who walked with Him with full obedience!
Now that all whom God had called were on the ark, God would send
3. Ferocious waters 10-12, 17-20
We must note the often-overlooked preface:
V. 10: It came about after the seven days, that the water of the flood came upon the earth.”
Whey the 7 day wait?
The Jewish Midrash (uninspired commentary) states this interval was for 7 days of mourning over the death of Methuselah.
That’s possible because Methuselah, Noah’s great grandfather we are told lived to be 969 (Gen. 5:27).
Remember, his name meant, “When he is dead, it shall be sent.” That may well have meant the flood.
So Methuselah’s death may well have coincided with the exact time of God sending the great deluge.
Now watch the righteous wrath of God unfurled on the wicked world. Verse 11:
“In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened.”
Friends, God wants us to be clear on the fact that this story is not myth or make believe.
The sixth verse tells us Noah was 600 years old when the flood of water hit the earth.
Now, the flood is nailed down a specific year, month, and day!
And when that day on God’s divine calendar arrived, He judged the world like never before.
First, the fountains of the deep. They burst open. That most likely was tectonic plates in the earth’s crust breaking open causing subterranean waters to explode like massive geysers.
Those may have been triggered by huge volcanic eruptions all over the planet that punctured the earth’s canopy.
Then the windows of the heavens opened dumping torrential rains on the earth- and those rains continued 40 days, nonstop.
The number 40 used literally here, is found many times in the Bible. It carries the sense of completeness.
The 12 spies were in the land of Canaan 40 days and then because of disobedience wandered in the wilderness 40 years. Num. 14:33
Moses remained atop Mt. Sinai 40 days. Ex. 34:28
Jonah proclaimed in Nineveh, “Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown.” Jonah 3:4
And our Lord Jesus, fasted forty days and forty nights before He was tempted. Mat. 4:2
The children’s Sunday school song is spot on: the rains came down and the floods came up- that was forty day God used to complete the job.
And what happened to the ark?
Verse 17 and 18 tell us: “Then the flood came upon the earth for forty days, and the water increased and lifted up the ark, so that it
rose above the earth. 18 The water prevailed and increased greatly upon the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water.”
While the raging waters swept over the earth, the ark floated in safety above it all.
Just imagine being part of Noah’s family. To hear the blood curdling screams of those outside the ark in a matter of minutes silenced.
Then you feel yourself in that great ark floating and rocking back and forth in the great waters.
Now plenty of scholars suggest it was a local flood that hit Noah’s area of Mesopotamia.
Well, what does the text say? Verse 19: “The water prevailed more and more upon the earth, so that all the high mountains everywhere under the heavens were covered.”
So simple. So clear. And God further adds how much higher than the mountains the water rose.
Next verse (20): “The water prevailed fifteen cubits higher, and the mountains were covered.”
That’s 22 ½ feet over the highest mountain peaks. It included Mt. Ararat, nearly 17,000 feet high, on which the ark would come to rest.
And if Everest was the highest mountain peak before the flood, that would mean the water reached over 29,000 feet! By the way, do you realize there are marine life fossils and little sea shells at the summit of Everest. The best explanation- a worldwide flood. That’s what God’s Word makes clear for those who have eyes to see and believe! The worldwide Flood becomes even more unmistakable when we see the
4. Fatal end 21-24 God said He would send the Flood to destroy all life save those on the ark. Verse 7: “The LORD said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land…” And God kept His Word to the very letter. Note with me the report of the Flood (verse 21):
“All flesh that moved on the earth perished, birds and cattle and beasts and every swarming thing that swarms upon the earth,
and all mankind; 22 of all that was on the dry land, all in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, died.”
5 times we read the words “every” and “all.” That shows no person nor animal on the earth (apart from those aboard the ark) was spared.
All perished in the watery grave. In fact, those flood waters, according to verse 24 prevailed on the earth, did not recede, for 150 days. That’s 5 months of the world inundated by water. Clearly, all people and animals died.
Recently, a Florida resident who rode out Hurricane Michael in one of the hardest-hit areas had this to say about the terrifying flooding: “When the water started coming up, I was more scared than any time …in my life. I could cry to think about it because I didn’t know it was going to stop, you know, and I’m thinking what’ll happen if it gets over our head?”
Well, we know what happens. You struggle as long as you can to keep your head above water. Then, eventually, you slip beneath the surface. In desperation, you gasp for air and inhale water. That water fills your lungs. The lack of oxygen, anoxia, affects the heart and brain and within minutes, you drown.
That’s what happened to every form of life on earth, particularly humans. And remember, with the longevity of people and reproduction rate, it’s been calculated there could have been 4 billion people on earth at the Flood.
Each of them took their last breath, was pulled under the water, and died. Not a one of them was resuscitated. None came back to consciousness in this life. But all face eternal judgment in the life to come.
Now there are many who think they need to get God off the hook so He doesn’t look like the bad guy who killed all these people.
But God doesn’t hide what He has done.
He makes it abundantly clear.
There in the first part of verse 23: “Thus He blotted out every living thing that was upon the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky, and they were blotted out from the earth.”
Why would God who created the world and fill it with people and animals destroy it? One word gives the answer. Sin. God hates sin.
And He saw how the world was filled with sin. For “every intent of the thoughts of [man’s] heart was only evil continually” (6:5). Not many years after the flood, a man named Eliphaz wrongly accuses Job of sin. Yet he rightly recalls the cause of the Flood was judgment on sin.
He asks, “Will you keep to the ancient path which wicked men have trod, 16 Who were snatched away before their time, whose foundations were washed away by a river? 17 “They said to God, ‘Depart from us!’ And ‘What can the Almighty do to them?’ Job 22:15–17
Beloved, we must learn a great lesson from the flood. It is this. Got hates and always judges sin.
You play games with God, you persist in sin, you tell him in the way you live, “Leave me alone” and He will bring severe judgment on you.
Listen, Christ is coming in judgement. And He warns us that most of the world, just as in Noah’s day will be unprepared:
Matthew 24:37–39 “For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. 38 “For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be.”
Don’t kid yourself to think you can get away with sin or that it escapes His notice.
That’s why the apostle Peter warns us in his second letter (3:3-7).
2 Peter 3:3–9 “Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, 4 and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.” 5 For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long
ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, 6 through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water.”
Do you see the fatal flaw? Forgetting that God has already judged the world once in Noah’s day- and all the wicked were judged with death.
Yet what’s coming, friends on the world, is not death by flooding but by fire.
Peter continues, “But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.”
God kept His Word in Noah’s day and He will keep it in ours. Yet don’t miss this: Christ’s judgment on all sinners still resisting him in this world is being delayed. Why?
Verse 9: “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”
That’s the heart of God. That no one will die in their sin but that you and all mankind would repent and be saved.
Now back to Genesis 7. All the wicked world was wiped off the map. Yet verse 23 notes the 1 exception: “Only Noah was left, together with those that were with him in the ark.”
Those are the saved 8 God brought safely through the water as He had promised.
Listen friends. And if you are in Christ share this with those who are not. God never sends judgment without prior warning. And He has warned us and the world in the flood. So, there is a choice to make: death or life, grief or grace. Commentator Matthew Henry put it so well 3 centuries ago, “None are punished by the justice of God, but those who hate to be [saved] by the grace of God.”
God still extends grace. To you. And to the world.
Christ pleads. Flee from the awful wrath to come. And that means you must take the only means of escape: Jesus Christ.
So, I ask, have you turned your back on the world, lust, pride and humbled yourself before God?
Have you come aboard the ark of Christ while there’s still hope?
Christ’s final words in Revelation 22 (17,20) call out saying, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost.”
“And He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming quickly.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.”
So, I urge you, come to Christ before He closes the door of salvation. Come to Him in repentant faith and find mercy and grace for your soul.
And if you have come, never cease to praise God with your lips and life for rescuing your soul from sin and death.
Let’s pray.
Destruction and Deliverance pt. 2
Genesis 7
HCBC 10/14/18
Intro.
1. Final orders 1-4
Gen. 6:17
Gen. 6:9
2. Full obedience 5-9, 13-16
Deut. 28:1–2
Rom. 6:17-18
3. Ferocious waters 10-12, 17-20
Gen. 5:27
Num. 14:33
Ex. 34:28
Jonah 3:4
Mat. 4:2
4. Fatal end 21-24
Job 22:15–17
Mat. 24:37–39
II Peter 3:3–9
Rev. 22:17,20
How would God call me to walk in obedience to His Word and know His blessing?