Summary: Human Government at it's best.
1. In the early nineties, the leaning Tower of Pisa began to lean too far. Seeing that the 180-foot-high tower would soon become dangerous, engineers designed a system to salvage the twelfth-century landmark by holding the lean constant.
First the engineers injected supercold liquid nitrogen into the ground to freeze it and thereby minimize dangerous ground vibrations during the work that followed.
Then they plan to install cables to pull the structure more upright. Engineers hope that the underground cable network will pull the tower toward center by at least an inch.
2. Left to itself, our world resembles the leaning Tower of Pisa: tilting and heading to catastrophe. To prevent total anarchy, God establishes governments to maintain order.
Governments and their laws function like the steel cables that will hold the leaning tower. The tower still leans. It's not perfect. But the cables prevent total destruction.
3. Human Government.
Trans: Gen. 8:20-9:17
I. FIRST, THE SUBSTANCE OF GOVERNMENT. 8:20-17
A. A new Promise is given - He will never destroy mankind with a universal flood. 8:20-22; 9:11-17
1. A Verbal Promise. 8:20-22; 9:11
21 And the LORD smelled a soothing aroma. Then the LORD said in His heart, "I will never again curse the ground for man's sake, although the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; nor will I again destroy every living thing as I have done. Genesis 8:21
a. Notice the Explanation - he will not send another for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth.
The interesting thing is it was the same reason God gave for sending the flood in the first place!
"5 Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. 6 And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. 7 So the LORD said, "I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them." Genesis 6:5-7 (NKJV)
Principle - man's sin is the motivation for both the judgment and mercy of God. God looks at man's sin and it motivated Him to release His wrath; and when God looks at man's sin, it motivated him to extend grace and mercy.
Truth is - some men's sins are met with God's wrath; while other's are met with mercy. Who decides whether there is wrath or mercy? God does!
"14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Certainly not! 15 For He says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion." 16 So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy." Romans 9:14-16 (NKJV)
MacDonald, "All people are condemned by thier own sin and unbelief. If left to themselves, they would all perish. In addition to extending a genuine gospel invitation to all people. God chooses some of these condemned people to be special objects of His grace. But this does not mean that He arbitrarily chooses the others to be condemned. They are already condemned because they are lifelong sinners and have rejected the gospel. Those who are chosen can thank God for His grace. Those who are lost have no one to blame but themselves."