Beyond the Ark, the Flood, and the Rainbow
“Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth. Genesis 9:15-16
“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to those of us who are being saved it is the power of God. I Corinthians 1:18
The newest Hollywood take on the message of the Bible is about to be released. You can’t miss the zillion commercials telling us so. The newest Noah film may help you visualize the enormous task of building a huge floating “boat to accomplish God’s purpose of saving life on the earth, and dramatize the horror of those who are drowned by tsunami like waves, because of the most modern film technology, but it will not give you the purposeful story as told by the Holy Spirit through Moses. It will give you an agnostic’s take on a grand story which he hopes will sell millions, to include Christians whom he has tried hard to entice into the theatre, just beyond the ticket booth. He is not in the least interested in proclaiming God’s message of judgment on what God describes as a society which succumbed to the great wickedness of their hearts, whose EVERY inclination, every thought, was evil ALL the time. (Genesis 6: 5) It must have been horrific to live in that period of time. Yet it was not unlike today, or what “today is fast becoming, which will only get worse as the time of Jesus’ return draws near.
The sinful society was so absolutely saturated with stench that the flood was not unlike a world-sized bath intended to wash the putridness from the surface of a world created before in nearly infinite beauty; that is, except for the human creature who sought to ruin its very beauty soon after enjoying it. The director’s concept in this film, that of environmental destructiveness which needed a just executioner, i.e. a world-wide flood, to rid the earth of its poisonous destroyers, must cause environmentalists to stand up and cheer their demise wishing somehow that Noah and his family, after saving the animals of course, had perished as well. That would have brought one of the species of the created world into total extinction. However, the true story, the facts of the Genesis account, exposes the element of creation which truly needs saving; for the seeds of ruin and destruction rest not in the animals, nor in the beauty of the earth (though the whole earth groans because of man’s sin), but in the humans who live here, with the commensurate command to be stewards of their “home, in the image of the One who made it.
Unfortunately, for some environmentalists’ and their world-view (I believe we all are commanded to be true environmentalists concerned about the entire creation including the environment of the human creature’s heart) God created the world for the ones he made to steward it, humankind. His salvific intent is focused on those who were created in His image. Without man there is no need for a world filled with animals, flowers, mountains, lakes and trees. If a tree falls in a forest and there is no one there to hear it, does it make a sound? Based on scientific principles, yes; but does it really matter? God hears it, sees it, but has expressed in no uncertain terms, He wants to share it with those He placed here.
Which brings us to what is beyond the ark, the flood, and the rainbow: the cross! Just as the rainbow is the sign God gave as a covenant between Himself and the earth, never to destroy it again with a flood, the cross and its message is the sign of God’s covenant in which He has provided a way of salvation for humankind, for those to whom the message of the cross is NOT foolishness. But, for those who hate or ignore (“hate is synonymous with “ignore) the cross and its message, these will perish just like those whom the flood swept away in the days of Noah. (Matthew 24:38f) The story of Noah, the ark, and the flood is a harbinger of what is coming when Jesus returns. He says it quite clearly in Matthew 24 and 25 and throughout the Bible.
The rainbow reminds you of God’s promise and has for millenniums. It reminds you that He is still in charge of His earth and that He always keeps His promises. You saw a rainbow not too long ago, didn’t you? The cross, whether on a church steeple, hanging around your neck, on the wall of your home, everywhere you look in most of the cultures on earth, reminds you of a message which is your salvation. The cross reminds you of your sin. It reminds you of the only way your sin may be blotted out. It reminds you of God’s way for your forgiveness and THE way for your salvation. The season of Lent culminates with the image of the cross with a Savior hanging on it on a hill called Golgotha on what is now known as Good Friday; and the cross points to the bursting of the bonds of death and an empty tomb on Easter Sunday.
During Lent and always whenever you see the cross remember this: your sin, God’s grace, and Jesus Christ, the way, the truth, and the life! Do not just let the image of the cross fly by; think of what it means!
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