Skip to main content

Through the Whole Bible: Genesis 7

The flood story continues here in Genesis 7 (LINK). This chapter addresses the story of the actual coming of the flood, including more details of the directions God gave to Noah regarding animals. We tend to remember the instruction to bring two of every kind of animal, but this chapter actually gives an expansion. It was two of every kind, and seven of the clean kinds.

There are some questions that the chapter leaves unanswered, such as exactly which animals are to be considered clean and unclean. The Mosaic law that will dictate that for the Israelites is still several centuries away, but there is apparently a known distinction even then. It is also a logical thing: if these are the animals that can be eaten and considered "acceptable" then you're going to need more of them. You're going to need them quicker, too.

The focus, though, for this chapter falls in verse 1. The Lord tells Noah to go into the Ark. This is important.

Why?

Consider this: for a hundred years, Noah and Sons have been in the ship-building business. They have, alongside doing whatever was necessary to survive, been building a ship that exceeds any thoughts of seaworthiness or control: it's going to be a big, floating box that is too big to steer, too big to move to the water, too full of animals to keep it clean…

The whole effort could have been a waste. Noah, Shem, Ham, Japheth all could have decided not to bother getting in the Ark. They could have decided that building it was enough. They could have decided that they had done what God had commanded: build it. Now, they're commitment was proven and it was time to call it a day.

Yet what would that have accomplished? Not a thing. Not one single thing.

If they don't obey and get in the ark, then they die in the flood. Failing to finish their obedience would result in an overall failure.

Can you see where this is going?

What are God's commands for us? Do justice, love mercy, walk humbly before your God, perhaps? (Micah 6:8) Love God with all you have and love your neighbor as yourself? (Matthew 22:36-40) Make disciples of all nations? Not just converts and notches in the pulpit and tally marks on the attendance rolls, but disciples? (Matthew 28:18-20)

These things are not to be half-done. They are to be completed.

Not because our salvation depends upon it—God in His grace saves sinners, even ones who do not fully obey Him. Our faithfulness is at stake.

And our faithfulness reflects on the One we serve. It affects people's response. Our incomplete obedience to the Gospel drives people to distrust us and our teaching and our Master.

So, the goal ahead is this: finish. Take the last step, finish the task ahead and do all of what God has commanded you.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Heart Mender by @andyandrews (Andy Andrews)

The Heart Mender: A Story of Second ChancesEver read a book that you just kind of wish is true?  That's my take on The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews.  It's a charming story of love and forgiveness, and it's woven into the historical setting of World War II America.  For the narrative alone, the book is worth the read, but the message it contains is well worth absorbing as well.However, let's drop back a minute.  This book was originally published under the title Island of Saints.  I read Island of Saints and enjoyed it greatly.  Now, Andrews has released it under a new title, with a few minor changes.  All of this is explained in the Author's Note at the beginning, but should be noted for purchaser's sake.  If you read Island of Saints, you're rereading when you read The Heart Mender.  Now, go ahead and reread it.  It will not hurt you one bit.Overall, the story is well-paced.  There are points where I'd like more detail, both in the history and the geog…

Abraham Lincoln Quoted by Jesus! Mark 3

Mark records a curious event in his third chapter (link). If you look at Mark 3:25, you'll see that Jesus quotes the sixteenth President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. After all, one of the highlights of the Lincoln years is his famous speech regarding slavery in the United States where he used the phrase that "a house divided against itself cannot stand." This speech was given in 1858 when he accepted the nomination to run against Stephen A. Douglas for Senate, but is still remembered as the defining speech regarding slaveholding in the United States. I recall being taught in school how brilliant and groundbreaking the speech was, how Lincoln had used such wise words to convey his thought. Yet the idea was not original to Lincoln. Rather, it was embedded in Lincoln from his time reading the Bible. Now, I have read varying reports about Lincoln's personal religious beliefs: some place him as a nearly completely committed Christian while others have him somewh…

Book: Vindicating the Vixens

Well, if Vindicating the Vixens doesn’t catch your attention as a book title, I’m not sure what would. This volume, edited by Sandra L. Glahn (PhD), provides a look at some of the women of the Bible who are “Sexualized, Vilified, and Marginalized.” As is frequently the case, I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my review.Let’s take this a stage at a time. First stage: book setup. This is primarily an academic Biblical Studies book. Be prepared to see discussions of Greek and Hebrew words, as appropriate. You’ll also need a handle on the general flow of Biblical narrative, a willingness to look around at history, and the other tools of someone who is truly studying the text. This is no one-day read. It’s a serious study of women in the Bible, specifically those who either faced sexual violence or who have been considered sexually ‘wrong’ across years of study.A quick note: this book is timely, not opportunistic. The length of time to plan, assign, develop, and publish a multi…