“But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.”
The story of the flood is a story of judgment and redemption. Mankind had turned its back on God. Moses is careful to describe the condition of the world at that time;
“Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” Genesis 6:5
People were living in open defiance of God. The line between the godly and the ungodly had become so blurred that the sons of God were marrying the daughters of men. The men of renown, the leaders of the ancient world, wanted nothing to do with the things of God. There was open demonic activity taking place among men. Jesus described a scene of such spiritual apathy that even Noah’s preaching of coming judgment, did not deter the people from their sinful lives. They continued on, as though they would never have to give an account to the God who created them. After 100 years of warning, the sky suddenly became dark, the rain began to fall, the earth began to rumble and split open. The judgment of God broke forth on the very people He had created to for fellowship. In the midst of this we read,
“But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” Genesis 6:8
As much as this is a story of God judging sin, it is also a story of God redeeming man. Noah was the recipient of the grace of God, which rescued him from wrath. Nothing has changed. God is still Holy and will forever judge sin. He is also gracious, providing a way for sin to be forgiven, and men to be delivered. We receive the grace of God when we choose to accept the pardon for sin He has provided through the death of Christ upon the cross. When we receive Christ, all our sins are washed away and we are rescued from wrath.
We see in Noah a picture of how this grace affects a man. We read that Noah “walked with God.” Walking with God is a common idiom found throughout the Bible. It is used to illustrate a person who is living a life that is well pleasing to the Lord. We read of three distinct things about Noah’s walk. First, he obeyed the Lord. Four times we read that “Noah did according to all that the Lord commanded him”. Not all that was commanded seemed to make sense. Instead of arguing, rationalizing, complaining or disobeying, Noah did as the Lord commanded. Second, we read that Noah’s faith impacted his family. Unlike Lot, Noah lived out his walk with God for others to see, and won his family members to the Lord. Too often our best Christianity happens at church, and we fail to live for Christ within the home. Finally, we read that upon exiting the ark, Noah offered sacrifice to the Lord. He realized that salvation was not based upon his good work, and he accepted the pardon that God provided.
Jesus told us, the times leading up to His return would be like the days of Noah. With evil increasing we must walk with the Lord all the more.