Read Genesis 6:1-22
“HIS Story of Man’s Rescue” may seem like an inaccurate title for what you just read in Genesis 6. Perhaps you would be tempted to call it “HIS Story of Man’s Destruction.” After all, nearly all of mankind, animals, and plants were destroyed in the flood. But let’s take a closer look at two important details that help us to understand what happened here.
1. God sent a flood. In so doing, He punished mankind for evil. Did you know that God has every right to do that? After all, He is just. He can’t just pretend that He isn’t aware of the wrong words, thoughts, and behavior of people. So when He observed “that every inclination of the thoughts of his [man’s] heart was only evil all the time” (v. 5), God was obligated to respond. And He did…with just punishment. A worldwide flood swept away people, destroyed animals, and completely altered the face of the earth.
2. God gave instructions about a boat. That boat rescued Noah, his wife, his three sons, and their wives. The commentary on Noah’s life sounded like this, “Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God” (v. 9). That doesn’t mean that Noah was perfect. It means that God is gracious. Righteousness, you see, is not achieved; it is imputed on the basis of faith. By placing personal faith in Christ, a person’s sin is exchanged for Christ’s righteousness (2 Cor. 5:21). Similarly, blamelessness is also not a statement of flawlessness. Instead, it is a pursuit of godly conduct characterized by owning faults in the form of repentant confession (1 Jn. 1:9). Because Noah’s imperfect life included that kind of walk with God, he was rescued.
Even though God has promised to never again destroy the whole earth with a flood, God is still just. He will punish the sin of every person. But thankfully, He is also still gracious. He offers to everyone the opportunity to board the lifeboat through personal, repentant faith in Christ.
His is a story of man’s rescue!