Wednesday, March 9, 2016

God's Wrath Poured Out on Those Who Want to Have It Their Way (Genesis 6:11-18)

Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So God said to Noah, ‘I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. So make yourself an ark of cypress wood… I am going to bring floodwater on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it. Everything on earth will perish. But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark – you and your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives with you’
(Genesis 6:11-14; 17-18, NIV).

I observed that we tend to treat Noah’s flood as a children’s story. The ark floats steadily atop the rising waters, a smiling giraffe poking its head through the window, and Noah smiled as if everything was fun to watch. But the story of the Flood is a story of God’s wrath.

God’s wrath is not an easy or pleasant thing to contemplate. But it expresses itself throughout the Bible in the Old Testament as well as the New. God’s wrath is another aspect of God’s love. To use the lesser example: If you love anyone deeply, you already know how your anger burns against anything that would harm that person. God’s wrath – His righteous-anger (not like ours’) – aims for that which seeks to destroy the people He loves. Sin destroys lives, relationships, and happiness. The anger of God is like the anger of surgeon who cut away cancers rather than seek to harm their victims.

God pours out His wrath by finally giving people what they want. The people of Noah’s time wanted to live without God. So God removed His loving hand from their lives and floodwaters poured out. In the end, the people got exactly what they wanted – and it was the end of them.

What’s hope for us today? Jesus Christ, the Son of God. “[God] demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!” (Romans 5:8-9). Don’t have it your way; wants God’s way - enter the ark of God. 


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