Genesis 6 includes one of the most famous Bible stories ever told, Noah and the Ark. But before we dive into the content of today’s chapter and this famous bible story, I want to ask you a question: Do you trust God?
Most Christians, and many of you, probably automatically said “yes” without even pausing to consider the question fully. But do we really trust God in all of life’s circumstances? Do we still trust him when that prayer doesn’t seem to be answered? Do we still trust him when you don’t feel His presence? What I’ve learned in life, is that it’s not until God tells us to do something difficult, uncomfortable, or just plain crazy that we realize the true answer to this question.
One of the best examples throughout scripture of someone who completely trusted God was Noah. We see it in this very chapter when God commanded Noah to build an ark. But before we get to Noah’s example of pure trust, we must understand the context of the situation. In Genesis 6:1-8, we find the details that went into the decision for God to flood the earth. Verses 6-7 say, “So the Lord was sorry he had ever made man and put them on the earth. It broke his heart. And the Lord said, “I will wipe this human race I have created from the face of the earth.”
Other translations say that “Lord regretted that he had made man on earth, and it grieved him to his heart”. That word grieved implies that because of humanity’s sin, God’s attitude and outlook toward them had changed from mercy and patience to judgment. Oftentimes as Christians we can become guilty of viewing God this way. Rather than seeing Him as the loving Father that He is, we end up believing that God is a mean judge just waiting to unleash His wrath.
But look at verse 8 with me: “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord”. Why would God show mercy to one man’s family? Because Noah was a fully devoted, fully trusting follower of God. Verse 9 says that he was a righteous man, the only blameless person living on earth at the time, and that he walked in close fellowship with God. So God, even in his regret with mankind, made a way for humanity to be saved.
Now in the rest of the chapter, God details his plan to wipe out mankind with a flood to Noah. And he gives Noah a very odd, very specific job. He instructs Noah to build an ark that would house him, his family, and a pair of every kind of animal to protect them from the flood that he was going to send. Oftentimes we read this story as believers as we think, “Well obviously Noah would listen. Who wouldn’t build the ark knowing that the flood was coming?”
But I want you to really think about it in the context of this story. Building a boat that would be longer than a modern football field would have seemed impossible. The bible doesn’t explicitly state how long construction took, but based off cultural and historical evidence, it would have taken Noah and his family up to 75 years to complete the construction of the ark.
And if that’s not enough for you, let’s talk about the other parts of God’s instruction to Noah. Gathering two of every animal onto the ark must have surely felt crazy. And let’s not forget that knowing you and your family would be the last ones alive on earth would have been a tremendous burden knowing that everyone else you know and have lived with would die.
But even in the face of all these reasons to doubt and disobey, “Noah did everything just as God commanded him” (Genesis 6:22). By obeying God’s commands, Noah demonstrated that he trusted God and was willing to follow Him – no matter how difficult – because Noah knew that God had a plan and a purpose for his life.
Can you imagine the amount of trust it would have taken for Noah to follow God’s instruction? For years he would have been building this ark, I’m sure with others calling him crazy and making fun of him. But Noah still trusted. He still listened to God’s voice.
Noah knew that our choices are a demonstration of our trust. And the same is true for us today. When we choose to obey God, when we choose to trust His voice above all others, it’s a demonstration of our trust in Him.
So, I’ll ask again: Do you trust God? When you’re faced with difficulty in life’s circumstances, what do your choices say that you put your trust in? My prayer is that you prove your trust to be in God. That no matter how challenging, how crazy it may seem to the world, we would trust God above all else. Obedience is not always easy. What God calls us to do may not always be logical, practical, or even comfortable. But we can be confident that He always has a purpose and plan for us. So the question we’re left with is: will you trust Him?