Through the Whole Bible: Genesis 8
Note: I apologize for the delay with today’s posting. Hopefully I’ll get a few days ahead soon and be on the mornings consistently.
Moving ahead: Genesis 8. (LINK) We’re still in the Flood. Actually, we start the chapter while the water is still upon the Earth. There’s lots of water at this particular point—over the tops of the mountains. There are additional sources to discuss the physical possibilities on this one.
The application angle I want to look is this: take a look Genesis 8:13 and compare to Genesis 7:11. The flood has taken a year.
Now, consider this: the purpose of the flood was to bring judgment on sinful humanity by destroying most of the human race. This is in response to the sinfulness of humanity: it is not an arbitrary judgment or undeserved one.
How long do you think that really needed? Channeling my best Bill Cosby as he does his old Noah routine: “How long can you tread water?” It didn’t need a year to accomplish that. There are reasons one can guess for why the flood took that long to happen and then subside. The general idea is that more was at stake than just purging the first post-Edenic world. Maybe there were cities or buildings to destroy. Perhaps this was a time that saw continents formed or deformed. The answer is: we just don’t know.
Had Noah been the one to make the decision, he probably would have spent about a month in the ark, come out, and gone on with life. After all, who wants to stay locked in a boat with a bunch of animals?
We would make decisions differently. Faster, for one thing. Without the extra time surrounded by smelly critters for another. We want life to move and work at our pace.
Yet it does not happen that way. Very rarely does anything take place as quickly as we want. Whether it’s building success or growing a garden, more time is necessary than we want.
When God is working to move us from dead sinfulness, it’s the same way. It is an instant in which our dead spiritual life is raised by the power of God in conversion. Yet we’re not instantly holy on the outside. It takes time. Continual effort, sustained patience. Time.
More than we want it to take. All the while, we have to keep going. While we wonder how long it will take—while Noah wonders when the water will go down, he keeps feeding animals, keeps shoveling out the bottom of the ark, and keeps going.
That is the key for us: keep going. Some days, all we see is the flood water.
But eventually, the water recedes and we go forward. We keep going.
God is not finished working in our lives—and we’re not done with what we’re supposed to be doing for Him.