As we remember the godly man Noah, we read about the flood story in an excerpt from The Flood.
As we commemorate Noah, we remember him as a faithful servant who trusted the Lord’s Word despite the unbelief of the world around him. Like Noah, we may be faced with scoffers who reject God and His Word of promise. Yet even in these times of difficulty, we trust in the Lord’s promise to save and deliver us from all trials.
“Thus did Noah,” continues the sacred writer; “according to all that God had commanded him, so did he” (Gen. 6:22). Like Enoch, Abraham, and other great saints, he believed the impossible because God had spoken it. It was a fearful and unheard-of thing which God had threatened to bring upon this earth. No one believed it, and no one considered it possible. The great masses of people, that is, the majorities of his age, were against him.
The “wisdom” of that world as represented by the great men of thought and of action did not believe it. The experience of the past was against him. It seemed so utterly unreasonable that God should destroy the earth upon which He had lavished such magnificent kindness and which He had so recently made. Nor were there any outward or visible indications that this overwhelming calamity was approaching. But “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” (Heb. 11:7).
We can well imagine that Noah suffered insult and derision from the scoffing curiosity of those who watched him build his ark. On the other hand, we can well imagine that Noah hired workmen, carpenters, and shipbuilders from among his ungodly neighbors to assist him in the building of his ark. For the heavy timbers required in the construction of a ship of such formidable dimensions make it well-nigh impossible that the building was done by Noah and his sons alone. But just as these men assisted Noah and his sons in the building of the ark which was to save the human race from total destruction, yet themselves perished in the Flood, so there are today men and women assisting in the building of the Christian Church, either by their own labors or by their contribution of talents and gifts, and yet themselves are lost, because they do not accept with all their heart the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. “The long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah while the ark was a preparing” (1 Peter 3:20).
O God, for Jesus’ sake, grant that every sighting of a rainbow may bring to mind Your promises of grace and mercy. Amen.
Devotional reading is adapted from The Flood, pages 62–63 © 1951 (Sixth Slightly Revised Printing, 1957) Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved.
Prayer is from The Lutheran Study Bible, page 29 © 2009 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved.