Saturday, October 31, 2015

Building Our Own Arks

Heb 11:5  By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God.
Heb 11:7  By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.
Jud 1:14  It was also about these that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, "Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones,
Jud 1:15  to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him."
2Pe 2:5  if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly.

We read in the above passages that Enoch and Noah were men of faith and their faith had an effect on how they lived and spoke.  The references in Hebrews speak to their lifestyle while the ones in 2 Peter and Jude speak to the words they proclaimed to the world around them.  So both of these men offer some insight as to what it is to walk with God and live by faith.

Another similarity is that both men’s “preaching” was concerned about the coming judgment of God upon the wicked.  What I find interesting as well is both men lived in light of coming judgment and by this their faith was commended or proven.  While they both are said to have spoken actual words to the lost around them, I think, if we try to make some practical application for ourselves, the preaching that they did and that we are to do isn’t just words but works.

We see this most clearly in Hebrews remarks about Noah in verse 7.  There it says that Noah had been given the word of God of coming judgment, in this case the world wide flood.  It then says that he began to construct the ark; in other words, he lived in light of the Word of God and future events; “yet unseen”, the Bible says.  It goes on to say that “by this” he condemned the world. 

It wasn’t just whatever he might have said to those who wanted to know what he was doing but his very act of constructing the ark was also how he “proclaimed” to the lost that judgment was coming.  Enoch teaches the same lesson as he is described as “walking with God”.  Both men lived in light of God’s revelation to them and their lives condemned those around them who lived only in the here and now. 

I believe in this sense we all have been called to be preachers of righteousness, not just in proclaiming truth but living in light of it.  Too many times our lives end up being an example of “do as I say, not as I do”.  But the Bible never gives Christians that option.  Yes, we will never be as consistent as we would wish; but Paul tells us to walk worthy of our calling, Eph_4:1  I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called.  Actually he exhorts us to do this three times in his epistles. 

I think we all know that in a very real sense it is how we live that says more about our faith than what we say.  While we are to be patient with each other’s sins and faults, we know that the world never will be patient with hypocrisy and they shouldn’t be.  We never have an excuse to live as if there is no coming day in which we will stand before the Lord.  Enoch and Noah were sinners just like we are but walking by faith is to live in a consistent way that shows you believe what God has revealed to us in his Word.  

Can this world see us building our arks?  Can they see us putting together lives that speak of the truth of God’s Word?  This is how our faith is commended as having pleased God like these two great men of faith.

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