THE GOSPEL IN THE SHIP
When we come to the account of Noah’s Ark and the worldwide flood, there are many who refuse to believe that it is true. But it is! I choose to believe it just like it is written in the Bible. There are many great lessons that can be learned from this passage. Lessons about the sinfulness of man the grace of God and the preservation of human life. However, there is so much more here than these things. In the story of the Ark, we can see the Lord Jesus and His plan of salvation for fallen man. As we look at this old, old story, I want you to see it afresh and new. I want you to see Jesus and what He can do for anyone willing to call on His name. Join me as we look at and see The Gospel In The Ship.
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I have a few things about the ark I would like to point out to you, to prove the gospel was being spread even during this time.
I.) THE PLANS FOR THE ARK
A. The Articles: vs. 6:14
1.) Gopher Wood - A type of humanity. (Ill. The life cycle of a tree) To build the Ark, tress had to be cut down. To provide a way of salvation, the Man, Jesus, had to be cut down - Isaiah 53:3-8 (NKJV) 3 He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. 4 Surely He has borne our grief's And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth. 8 He was taken from prison and from judgment, And who will declare His generation? For He was cut off from the land of the living; For the transgressions of My people He was stricken.
2.) Pitch - A type of the atonement. It Covered The Wood - Christ’s blood covers our sins - John 1:29 (NKJV) 29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
It Protected The Wood - (Ill. Waterproof - water a type of judgment)The shed blood of Jesus protects us from the wrath of God - Romans 5:9 (NKJV) 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.
The Abodes - vs.6:14 Rooms - Literally, nests! Indicates a place of resting. Jesus provides a place of rest for the weary sinner:
1.) Here - Matt. 11:28 (There is room for all who will come) Ill. The Invitation - 7:1, they were invited to come, not go! That implies that they were asked to join God, not depart from Him. The sinner is invited to join God, not driven to anything, Revelation 22:17 (NKJV) 17 And the Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.
Ill. The size of the Ark - 450l x 75w x 45h = 1,518,750 cu. ft. Or approx. 45 times the size of this building! Each deck contained 33,750 sq. ft. Of floor space, or the equivalent of 21 basketball courts. It is estimated that the 35,000 known species could fit into 150 box cars. The Ark was the size of 530 boxcars. There was room in the ship then, there is room tonight!
2.) Hereafter - John 14:1-3 There is room in glory for all who will come!
The Access - vs.6:16
1. The Door - There was only one door into that Ark. There is only one door into God’s salvation - John 10:1-9 . Jesus is the only way - Acts 4:12 ; John 14:6.
2. The Window - The window allowed light to enter the Ark. It was located above, therefore Noah would have to look up for light. The sinner must look up for light, Jn 6:44, and salvation - Eph. 2:8-9 .
II.) THE PROVISION OF THE ARK
Promise - vs.6:18 - Ill. God’s covenants. He always keeps His Word - Heb. 6:18.So it is with salvation! The sinner who comes to Jesus need never fear that God will change His mind, Ill. John 6:47. Ill. Rom. 4:21! Ill. The promise was received through obedience, 6:22. That is how the sinner comes into a saving relationship with Almighty God, Ill. 2 Thes. 1:8 ; 1 Pet. 4:17 . It is obedience to the call of the Spirit that brings eternal life!)
Preservation - vs.6:18-20 The Ark promised to preserve:
1. Human Life - Jesus will preserve those who come to Him by faith - 1 Pet. 1:5! (Ill. The doctrine of the Perseverence of the Saints.. I believe the saint will serve God, but I believed that we are preserved - Ill. Sealed - 2 Cor. 1:22 ; Eph. 1:13; 4:30 !) (Ill. 7:16 - God shut the door - What God does, man cannot undo - John 10:28-30 !)
2. Animal life - God’s plan will ultimately rescue His Creation - Rom. 8:20-22
Plenty - (6:21) There was an ample supply for every creature on the Ark! God is able to save, keep and carry to Heaven everyone who places their trust in Him - John 17:12 . He is able to get you home and He is able to take care of you here - Phil. 4:19 . Ill. No use to worry! God is able to do it all - Eph. 3:20
III.) THE PERFORMANCE OF THE ARK
It Rode Safely - vs.7:18-21 While the world beneath perished, the Ark rode safely above the judgment. This world is falling apart tonight, but if you are in the Ark, you are safe! The Old Ship Of Zion is still sailing! Not only will the Ark of salvation ride out the storm here, it will dock on the sunny shores of sweet deliverance some day! Neither man nor devil can stop God’s Ark from her intended harbor! Ill. We are safe!
It Rested Securely - vs.8:4 Ill. The time - 17th day of the 7th month. Exactly 3 days after the Passover was to be killed, Ex. 12:6. The 7th month became the 1st month under the Jewish calendar. Therefore, the Ark rested on the same day that Jesus would hundreds of years later, walk out of the tomb! Jesus died on the 14th day of the month and arose on the 17th day! Is that a coincidence? I think not!) The point is, one day, the sailing ended and the Ark rested. One day, our journey will end and we too will rest on Heaven’s shore! (Ill. The glories of that city - Best summed up in two verses - Rev. 21:4; 22:3-4) Then, what Noah did, we will do - 8:20. We will worship God - Ill. Revelation worship scenes!
Are you in the ship tonight? If you are not, let we warn you that you are in terrible danger! There is no other hope for fallen man tonight, other than the Old Ship Of Zion! If you are on board, then you are safe. If you are outside the boat, remember, the door is still open. Won’t you come on board tonight? God is willing and waiting to receive you and save you.