This Scriptural account is one that most of us begin learning about early in our lives. There are endless songs (“Arky, Arky” anyone?), cute crafts, fun toys, and adorable nursery decor centered around this passage. It’s also one of the most violent visuals of God’s judgment of sinful people. It’s one that prompts kids and adults to ask: “Why would God be so harsh in his punishment?” “Did God not love the people anymore?” “What could the people have done that was SO bad that they AND the animals all had to drown?” “How was Noah the only one good enough to be saved from the flood?”
The story of Noah points ahead to a greater rescue. Jesus-the only perfectly righteous One-came to take the punishment for our sin.Brian Dembowczyk
It’s always good to probe the surface and ask the questions. The truth is, all sin has the same cost…it all leads to death and separation from the one true God. The problem comes as we begin to normalize sin or see some types of sin as less severe. God is completely righteous and just. He cannot turn his head and look away from our sin. This passage tells us, “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.” (Gen. 6:5) He was grieved as he punished the people whom He created in His own likeness. But even in the midst of the terrible judgment that befell the sinful people, He had a redemptive plan. He provided grace and mercy to Noah and his family. Noah didn’t deserve redemption any more than we deserve to find salvation in Christ’s sacrifice. Noah was not perfect, but he found favor with God. As we read this passage, let’s remember exactly who God is. Let’s remember that He alone is holy, righteous, and just. He has woven a story of judgment and grace throughout all generations. We have the privilege of studying His story and rejoicing in the redemption He has provided, through Jesus, to underserving sinners like ourselves.