Scripture: But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. (Genesis 6:8, NKJV). . . Then the LORD said to Noah, “Come into the ark, you and all your household, because I have seen that you are righteous before Me in this generation. (Genesis 7:1, NKJV)

Observation: The world before the flood had become totally corrupted so that Moses goes to great lengths to describe it: “every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5, NKJV). 
Ellen White describes in greater detail some of what the antediluvians were doing to cause such sorrow to God.  “In the green fields and under the shadow of the goodly trees they set up the altars of their idols. Extensive groves, that retained their foliage throughout the year, were dedicated to the worship of false gods. With these groves were connected beautiful gardens, their long, winding avenues overhung with fruit-bearing trees of all descriptions, adorned with statuary, and furnished with all that could delight the senses or minister to the voluptuous desires of the people, and thus allure them to participate in the idolatrous worship” (Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 91).  They also practiced polygamy (PP 91), and human sacrifices (PP 99).
It was in the midst of this decaying culture that Noah “was the only person who lived right and obeyed God” (Genesis 6:9, CEV), or as the NKJV puts it, “Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.”  In spite of his righteousness and the power of his message of warning, not one single person accepted his call to salvation even after 120 years of preaching, except for his own wife, their three sons, and their wives.

Application: The first thing that strikes me about Noah is that many would consider him a total failure.  I don’t know of a church that would employ a pastor who never brought even one person to the point of salvation.  To be fair, though, there were some who believed Noah’s message but who died before the flood began.  Ellen White writes, “Amid the prevailing corruption, Methuselah, Noah, and many others labored to keep alive the knowledge of the true God and to stay the tide of moral evil. . . Enoch had repeated to his children what God had shown him in regard to the Flood, and Methuselah and his sons, who lived to hear the preaching of Noah, assisted in building the ark” (PP 92).
However, when all was said and done, only Noah’s family believed enough to enter the ark.  This are the encouraging works to every parent: “Noah’s warnings had been rejected by the world, but his influence and example resulted in blessings to his family. As a reward for his faithfulness and integrity, God saved all the members of his family with him. What encouragement to parental fidelity!” (PP 98).  Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord, he was righteous, and he obeyed God.  It was that life, lived under the shadow of the Almighty, which singled him to be God’s spokesman to a dying world.  But most importantly, he became the instrument of salvation for his own family.  Though no one hear and accept our message that the world is again coming to an end, I pray our own family will be saved not because of our “preaching,” but because of the way we live before God.

A Prayer You May Say: Father, help us to live in such a way that our children will be saved because they see You reflected in us.

Used by permission of Adventist Family Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.



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