It’s hard to imagine a situation much worse than what is described in Genesis 6:5, “The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” Sin had infected every intention of every thought of the human heart, so that God was grieved to his heart, determined to remove the stain of sin from His very good creation. Things seem dark and hopeless in Genesis 6 until verse 8, “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” In the midst of a corrupt and sinful generation, God looked upon Noah with grace. God spoke to Noah a word of salvation. And Noah believed. God moved in His grace. And Noah believed. Hebrews 11:7 tells us, “By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.”
God warned. Noah believed. God called. Noah believed. God instructed. Noah believed. And when Noah and his family entered the ark, the Lord shut them up in safety. Noah believed God, and God saved Noah. Noah’s story points us to this unbroken pattern–God graciously saves those who trust in Him. Ephesians 2:8-9 tell us that God continues this pattern in Jesus, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” God’s grace doesn’t produce boasting. It doesn’t cause us to look down on those who are younger or older or richer or poorer or whatever measure we think might favor us. God’s grace produces gratitude and joy that overflow from our hearts toward others. God’s grace gives us eyes to look at others in the same way God has looked at us–with grace.