8/13/19– The Other Noah

Pastor Daron CrossLife Blog

Noah is described as a righteous man. God chose him among the people of his day to build the ark—a huge enclosed barge that would provide deliverance from a worldwide flood.

Noah was upright. He believed God’s commands and promises. He wanted other people to believe them also.

“Repent! Be prepared! There is room. Come aboard.” 

Noah’s cries became more desperate. Then the floodwaters deluged the entire planet. They rose quickly, as floodwaters tend to do. The cavalier attitude of the mockers and skeptics who laughed at Noah now cried in regret. But the ark had been shut tight with all the animals and Noah’s family of eight, or they too would have perished. Noah’s heart grieved. 

“It’s too late. I’m sorry.”

Centuries later, Jesus would walk this same earth. The people who repopulated it were mockers and skeptics again, who laughed at Jesus’ claims to be the Son of God and the Savior who forgives. They killed him.

Jesus was a righteous man. God the Father chose his Son.

Like Noah, Jesus was lifted up by beams of wood, “the righteous for the unrighteous (1 Peter 3:18). 

Except he wasn’t spared. He was sacrificed into the angry waters of God’s justice for sin. He died.

Within three days, however, Jesus came back to life. Then he preached to the same people who rejected Noah. They had died in the flood but their imprisoned spirits in hell were alert, awake, and full of regret. After coming back to life, Jesus descended into hell. With a message. His heart grieved.

“It’s too late. I’m sorry.”

The thing is, you are still alive. You’re still here. Do you believe in Jesus? Do you know people who don’t believe in Jesus? It’s not too late for any of us.

“Repent! Be prepared! There is room. Come aboard.” 

The wooden beams holding up the righteous man save the unrighteous ones. Ignore this and you’ll regret it. The second Noah saves.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, you are the second Noah, able to save the world by the beams of wood assigned by your Father. Not an ark, but a cross. May your cries of “Repent!” and “Be prepared!” ring in my ears, my heart, and my voice to others. Amen.

FURTHER MEDITATION: Read 1 Peter 3:18-22. Make time for this, at least 15-20 minutes. Put away your devices. Turn off your screens. Slow down. Now, pray for God’s enlightenment as you meditate on these words and their meaning. Reflect and pray about the following explanations, as you re-read this section piece by piece.

  1. Verse 18—Jesus died because he had a physical body. He didn’t just faint, or experience a mystic semi-death. “He was put to death in the body.” They call it murder, or assassination. It was real. They buried him. But then he was “made alive in the Spirit.” The effective power that raised him was not earthly, but heavenly. Divine. God the Holy Spirit, the life-giver who gives birth and calls believers “born again” gave re-birth and new life to the Son. Resurrected.
  2. Verse 19—This is Christ’s descent into hell. A spiritual place (not a physical place or prison). A place where the souls of those unbelievers who had died were sent by God as immediate judgment, awaiting the ultimate, final Judgment Day when their bodies would join them in hell’s eternity. Jesus went there. Why? “Proclamation.” To announce his victory. “I’m alive!” It wasn’t a mission trip. No souls, once in hell, can ever leave.
  3. Verse 20—Whose fault was it that people in Noah’s day drowned in the flood? Their own. They “were disobedient” to God’s warning through Noah. Whose fault is it that people today don’t believe in Jesus? Their own. The clear gospel message rings loudly and clearly all over the world.
  4. Verse 21—Baptism saves! Like the waters of the flood lifted Noah’s ark above the crashing liquid chaos that killed others, baptism lifts believers above our sins, shame and guilt. It cannot kill us.
  5. Verse 22—Jesus is now the ultimate authority and ruler over all. Give him your allegiance. Believe in him. Follow him. And live!