July 6, 2014

“Me In That Ridiculous Ark? No Way!” Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

Imagine what it was like for those outside of the ark when…

“…all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened. The rain fell…” (Genesis 7:11-12).

Imagine what were they thinking as the flood-waters rose around them. How quickly stubborn, hardened hearts would change from confident, mocking rebellion to, “Wait a minute, I’m not so sure now…to anxiety…to fear…panic…terror!

What “everybody” had been thinking, that seemed so certain and dominant, now meant absolutely nothing. Here is a vivid example of shifting prevailing opinions. We see it every day as “out of fashion” ideas gradually fade from the headlines, almost indiscernibly…but not here. Overnight Noah was no longer that crazy kook spouting cockamamie ideas. Now, “everyone” was thinking, “Could he possibly be right?” Attitudes quickly morphed into, “Why didn’t I listen to Noah. He was tying to save me. How foolish I was to follow the crowd.”

Think about it. How much weight should prevailing public opinion (unsupported by compelling evidence) exert in our attitudes and on our actions?

The tragedy of Noah’s story is it is being repeated today. Jesus said, “For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be” (Matthew 24:38-39). The popular vices that tempt today are somewhat different from that ancient generation, but the basic refusal to acknowledge God over our lives is still the same. The majority of the world refuses to fear God and keep His commandments; choosing to dismiss His promise of an upcoming judgment (Acts 17:30-31). When He does finally bring this world to an end, the majority of people will be doing the same thing as Noah’s generation: living for their temporal pleasure, foolishly ignoring God’s eternal wisdom.

What Noah’s ark was to his generation is what the church is to our generation, in terms of salvation. The gopher wood had no magic power, but the only ones who survived the flood were those in the ark. You think that’s narrow-minded? Try arguing with God about it. Can you handle the truth? The only ones who will survive the fiery judgment of hell are those in the body of Christ. The Judge says, “Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body” (Ephesians. 5:23). Salvation and eternal life are in Jesus (Ephesians 1:7; 1 John 5:11).

Noah had to trust God’s word to build the ark, long before the flood waters encompassed the earth (Hebrews 11:7). The same is true today regarding Christ. It takes faith to believe in His saving power and to enter His body, before the final judgment. “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:26-27). Unfortunately, many are dismissing these words, clinging to manmade doctrines instead. “Just ask Jesus into your heart and you’ll be saved,” say many. “Baptism has no magic power.”

Those who reject water baptism for salvation to enter Christ are the same ones who would have criticized Noah for building and entering the ark. “We’re saved by faith through grace, Noah, not by works!” But, Noah ignored his critics and walked by faith in God’s pattern. Anyone who expects to be saved from sin must fear God more than man and walk by faith in Jesus’ blueprint, which clearly requires faith, repentance, confession, and baptism for salvation (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 8:35-39).

If you are wise you will enter the ark before it’s too late. What your family and friends might think of you doesn’t matter as much as truth. Think about God and how much you should love Him more. Your family can’t save you from your sin and its eternal, fiery consequences. You need Christ to do that. Be wise and submit to God in faith by moving with godly fear in obedience to His will. It may not seem like it now, but one day you’ll be glad you trusted in God to enter the ark of Christ—as the flames of death encompass the earth.

Adapted from an article by Mike Thomas


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