Summary: God continues to develop His relationship with mankind through the covenant with Noah
1. The situation had gotten out of hand. Something had to be done about it.
2. Last week we saw how sin entered into the world - how there would now be a struggle between God’s chosen people and those who belonged to the evil one, how all are subject to judgement but how God’s grace was even seen in His judgement, how despite pain, children would continue to be born and despite thorns and thistles, the land would continue to bear forth food.
1. God decided not to destroy mankind even though He had every right to do so, but now as He looked down on creation, he must have wondered if He had made a mistake. (Gen 6:5)
2. Problem not that man sinned every so often, but evil had saturated His heart so much that EVERY inclination of the heart - every thought, attitude - was evil not once in a while but ALL OF THE TIME
1. God was grieved, His heart was filled with pain. God almighty, the Creator had a broken heart. He had committed Himself to His creation, He simply asked them to trust and obey Him, to let Him be their God and bestow His blessings upon them, to be in the relationship He had established by His covenant - as we saw - both before and after the fall.
2. But they rejected His love and His grace - they wanted nothing to do with it
3. And so God thought about what He would do. With His power, He need but saw the word, and all mankind and creation could be wiped from the face of the earth. And it seems He nearly did that very thing.
1. Today we continue to look at God’s relationship with us and as we do we look at one of the greatest events that has ever taken place on this earth.
2. Story of preacher announcing sermon - glue pages together - some things are still hard to believe.
3. find the story of the flood hard to believe, do you? Not because of the flood itself - as some do, but I find it hard to believe because of what it teaches us about God. I find it hard to believe how it shows the great extent of God’s grace in His relationship with us.
4. The story of the flood is a story of God’s judgement on sin, but that is not the main story. Illustration - PBS - about Genesis. Story of flood is the story of grace, God’s continued commitment to our relationship. God brings judgement upon the earth but He knows that judgement will not affect man’s sinning
a. Before the flood, as we said, God said that man was totally evil and after the flood man still is. (Gen 8:21) The flood has not changed the state of man’s heart - the answer to man’s problem is not found in judgement but in grace. In fact God makes a wonderful promise despite knowing that we will be wicked anyway.
b. God sparing Noah is a matter of grace. Gen 6:8 says Noah found favour in the eyes of the Lord. Word for favour can be translated as grace. We are told in vs. 9 that Noah was righteous and blameless, but - that is not reason he was spared. Clear break between 8 and 9 and a new thought presented. Also, Noah was not sinless. Even the righteousness he had was a gift from God, not his own doing. (Rom 3:10)
5. And so the account of the flood is a continuation and development of the covenant God has established with mankind.
6. As His covenant develops we see here how God’s covenant is with mankind in general and with his chosen people in particular.
7. We see how God makes covenant with family - Noah’s family joined him in ark. Later we see how God deals with families as well.
8. Another point, before we look at content of God’s promise, is that God the aspect of life and death continues. There is death upon most of creation because of sin and yet in death, there is life. God will perpetuate mankind so His grace will have opportunity to function and he will even use mankind as a means of grace.0
9. What is covenant that God establishes with mankind? We could try and differentiate from covenant with Noah but they are intermingled since Noah and family represents all of mankind
10. First we look at most obvious aspect of covenant and then we look at some points we might overlook.
11. God promises that He will never again destroy the earth with a flood. We may look at sin today and think God will again send flood.