NOAH - OVERCOMER OF HIS DAY
Anita Clark – PastorGrace Chapel, Carbondale, Kansas
“But of the day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” Matthew 24:36-39. In these verses we see the people of the world in Noah’s day were extremely self-indulgent and uncontrolled. This is the attitude in our time also. V. 38 tells the story, “eating, drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the flood came and took them all away.” There are places in the world today where extreme poverty and famine have caused the death of thousands, with no end in sight. On the other hand we have read recently how obesity is causing grave health problems for individuals in the United States and else where.
It is interesting that the second thing happening in Noah’s day was “marrying and giving in marriage.” In our society many people live together without being married, despite this, the marriage business is thriving. Millions of dollars are spent on extravagant weddings. Divorce rates are very high now, with statistics stating that at least 50% of all marriages end in divorce.
In the days before the flood, they had a problem similar to our day. “The sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair: and they took them wives of all which they chose.” Apostle Paul says, “Be ye not unqually yoked together with unbelievers; for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness” (II Cor. 6:14).
Let’s look at some other problems in Noah’s day. Pride was a big problem as seen in V. 4, “...the same became mighty men, which were of old, men of renoun.” In our reckoning we wouldn’t rate pride as being a worse sin than fornication, but in God’s sight, He rates it first. Proverbs 6:16-19, tells us that seven things the Lord hates, listing “pride” as number one. Pride is the predominate sin in humanity. Pride keeps God from working in the life. Next we see “wickedness,” and “his imagnation only evil continually” and the earth was “corrupt and filled with violence.” For these reasons God said, “I will destroy them with the earth.”
“But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (V. 8). “ All were wicked and ungodly, “But Noah.” Have you ever stopped to think about the fact that Noah had brothers and sisters who did not believe. He might have also had, sons and daughters who didn’t heed his preaching (II Pet. 2:5). It is a hurtful thing when those we love of our families don’t heed the truth of God’s Word. “But Noah found Grace.” The word “found” means “to acquire or attain.” Noah found it. He found something, extremely precious and marvelous, the GRACE of God. He found strength in God’s grace to help him be an overcomer over all the rejection, hurts and persecution of his day.
This grace gave him righteousness, V. 9 says, “Noah was a just (or justified or righteous) man. God says of Noah in Genesis 7:1, “Thee have I found righteous.” II Peter 2:5 calls Noah, “the eighth person.” In the study of numerology seven is the number of Divine perfection, and eight is the New Creation number. Noah became a new creation in Christ looking ahead to the cross. I Peter 1:11 tells us that Old Testament prophets had the Spirit of Christ in them. Glory to God!
Peter tells us, Noah was a “preacher of righteousness.” He preached that people should turn to the Lord and receive God’s righteousness, but not only that, but also to live a righteous life. Remember the horrible sin manifest in Noah’s day, yet he did not stop preaching the truth. They no doubt ridiculed him and persecuted him. Yet, he maintained his faith. Hebrews 11:7, “By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.” We also have been warned of God of future events coming very soon on this old world. There are things not seen as yet, but we believe God and His Word, which warns us to be ready and watching. Remember, “as the days of Noah;” the same condition is here today, violence, wickedness, indulgence of every kind, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God, attending natural things, putting priority on earthly things rather than on the important things of God. Paul says in Col. 3:2, “set your affections on things above, not on things of the earth, for ye are dead and your life is hid with Christ in God.” We should take heed to the Word and the admonition to hold fast. He is coming!
Times are hard, but they may get harder. God will not fail us. As He has been with the saints of God in ages past, He will be with us. I often think of the “Great Depression.” I heard my parents and grand parents speak of how bad it was, but God was there also. He delivered His people out of that awful time. He will deliver us as we trust him.
Most Christians in foreign lands are persecuted. Many are beaten or killed. Many suffer their homes being burned and their churches destroyed and burned. Recently many churches in Pakistan were destroyed by evil doers, and yet they (the believers) keep on proclaiming their faith. Ask yourself, how well would you stand if you were fined for having a Bible study in your home, or if you were beaten because you were a Christian and would not deny your faith?
Let me tell you assuredly, the persecution will come to the United States of America and other nations of the world. The tribulation of seven years will be worse than anything that has ever happened before. There will be a rapture, or catching away of the overcomers before the seven years starts. Then, Satan’s forces will be unleashed, and he will incite men to rampage and persecute anyone who professes the name of Christ. We have the privilege now to prepare and be ready for the upward call, that call to His bride, “Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.” Are you ready? Are you living as Noah - by the grace of God? Are you overcoming the sin of this world, which presses in more so all the time? Saints of God, let us press on. Christ is coming so soon!