Summary: Genesis 9 is an important “FIRST” in the Bible. In this chapter, God ordains the second sphere of oversight for controlling human behavior. The first sphere that God ordained was in Genesis 1. It is the Family. The second sphere is found here in Genes
Sermon Notes November 6, 2011
Human Government - God’s Restraint for a Sinful World
There is a great debate in the U.S. concerning the role of Government. It is seen in slogans being promoted such as,
“Everyone must pay their fair share...”
“Universal health care...”
“Tax the rich...”
We are in the middle of a protest called “Occupy Wall Street,” which seems to be standing for the redistribution of wealth from wealthy to the poor. Among other goals, the movement is promoting the forgiveness of student loans, free universal health care, and reform in the banking system. (For a summary of the “occupy Wall Street” demands, see the Heritage Foundation http://blog.heritage.org/2011/10/26/the-conservatives-guide-to-the-occupy-wall-street-protests/
Our view concerning the role of government is very important. Essentially, there are two competing world views that are battling in our country today. They are
THEISTIC - Human government is instituted by God for the punishment of evil. Morals come from GOD.
HUMANISTIC - Human government exists to create equal outcomes. Morals come from US. A humanistic leads to the policies of Marxism, Socialism, and ultimately, facism in its various forms.
As America drifts from its Christian foundation, something must replace the theistic world view. The most basic assumptions are being challenged in every area.
Genesis 9 is an important “FIRST” in the Bible. In this chapter, God ordains the second sphere of oversight for controlling human behavior. The first sphere that God ordained was in Genesis 1. It is the Family. The second sphere is found here in Genesis 9, and it is the sphere of human government.
The Components of God’s Covenant with Noah
The first component is to Protect God’s Earth Through Stewardship
Notice how God’s EARTH and God’s CREATURES are emphasized in Gen 8:20-9:11. There are at least five separate reference to the EARTH, and seventeen separate references to man or living animals. God demands that people exercise greater care over his creation. This is seen in the restriction in not eating meat that still has its life blood in it (Gen 9:4)
a. Man is granted a greater exercise of dominion.
b. This is a call to STEWARDSHIP
c. Man is to treat the world DIFFERENTLY than the animals
d. “Restricting the “lifeblood” meant forbidding the eating of an animal while yet alive and, what logically follows, draining the blood from a slain animal as later required in the Mosaic proscription (e.g., Deut 12:24).” Mathews, New American Commentary. 402.
e. “This privilege of killing animals for food assumed the responsibility of caring for animal life as it was first formulated in Eden (cf. 2:15)” (Matthews, 402)
This command is still valid today! We know this because it is repeated in Deuteronomy 12:24 You must not eat the blood; pour it out on the ground like water. It is also repeated in a similar passage in the New Testament in Acts 15:20 “Instead we should write to them, telling them to abstain from food polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from the meat of strangled animals and from blood.”
The application to us is that we should not eat raw meat! Most of us are not interested in eating raw meat. The reason for God’s restriction is to that we do not carelessly kill animals, and that we observe the difference in the way people behave as opposed to animals who kill and devour their food.
The Second component to God’s covenant with Noah is to Protect God’s Image by Honoring Human Life
This establishes HUMAN GOVERNMENT. Gen 9:5-6
God’s image must be protected. 9:6 “for in the image of God has God made man”
The TRAGEDY of the Pre-Flood world would not be repeated!
“People would also learn that human law was necessary for the stability of life and that wickedness should not go unchecked as it had before. So human government was brought in. (Walvoord, Bible Knowledge Commentary)
This is a command that murderers be punished with death for their crime because it is a crime against their fellow man who is created in God’s image. “His fellow man” (NIV) is better translated “his brother.” This is an interesting twist on an earlier phrase in Genesis, where Cain replied to God, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”(4:9). Here, God says, “YES, YOU ARE YOUR BROTHER’S KEEPER! (Matthews, 404)
Regarding the phrase, “Whoever sheds man’s blood,” consider a point made by Dr. Henry Morris regarding this as a shadow of the coming sacrifice of Jesus. “Shed” is most often translated, “poured out.” We read in Luke 22:20 "In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you."
Morris writes, “Its first mention, here in Genesis 9:6, it stresses not only the sacredness of human life, but also points us forward to the One who was most perfectly and eternally “in the image of God,” and whose blood would be shed judicially, though utterly unjustly, by human governmental authority—but who, in the marvelous counsels of God, thereby “made his soul an offering for sin” (Isaiah 53:10). Henry M. Morris, The Genesis Record, 226.