exercise workout January 3 Chronological Bible Study

Timeline. Map. Go to today's Bible reading (NIV) or alternate versions (use your browser arrow to return): Genesis 6:9- 9:17

Remove and Renew

New Year resolutions come in different forms but the goal seems to be to remove and renew. A lot of us ate too much during the holidays, and now we want to remove those extra pounds and renew our bodies. We may diet, get involved in an exercise program, or change our habits to get back into shape. Others see the New Year as a time to remove old habits and associations and begin anew. However, what happens when we do nothing? At the very least we will not enjoy the benefits of accomplishing our goals, and in extreme cases we may destroy ourselves.

In the time of Noah wickedness is extreme. There is a need to remove and renew all of life on the earth.

The LORD saw how great man's wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. So the LORD said, “I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth-- men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air-- for I am grieved that I have made them” (Genesis 6:5-7, NIV).

The people of the earth are totally corrupt, and no amount of effort can change it. God chooses to remove the earth of all its inhabitants, including people, animals, creatures which move along the ground, and birds of the air. In his grace, however, God saves Noah, his wife, his sons and their wives (eight individuals). Why does he only save Noah's family? “Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD…. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God” (Genesis 6:8-9, NIV). God confides in Noah,

I am going to bring floodwaters on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it. Everything on earth will perish. But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark-- you and your sons and your wife and your sons' wives with you (Genesis 6:17-18, NIV).

“Noah did everything just as God commanded him” (Genesis 6:22, NIV). He was attentive to please God in even the smallest details.

The Almighty asks Noah to do some strange things in the eyes of the world. Noah builds a huge boat one and one-half times the length of a football field, seventy-five feet wide, and forty-five feet high. Since Noah is a preacher of righteousness (2Peter 2:5), much of the time when he is not building the boat, he warns all the people to repent or be consumed by a flood, even when there are no indications of any such calamity. Then God brings to Noah every kind of land animal, creature and bird. Is Noah starting a zoo? No matter how much he was mocked, “… Noah did all that the LORD commanded him” (Genesis 7:5, NIV).

Could we do that? How easy it is to live for God when surrounded by Christians, but how very difficult it is when we are surrounded by wickedness. Can we obey God when we know we will be mocked and ridiculed? Do we want to be friends with the world or friends with God? (James 4:4; 1John 2:15). If we walk in God's ways and do all the LORD commands us to do, he will favor us. His commands are in his Word, the Bible.

The LORD instructs Noah to build the ark to save himself, his family, two of every male and female representative species of animals and birds, and seven pairs of clean (unblemished) animals and birds for sacrifice to the LORD. He is also to pack all the provisions they will need. Then, after God shuts them in the ark, a world-wide flood comes upon the earth, and all creatures on the earth die, save for those mentioned. For over a year, Noah, his family and all the creatures live in the ark. God is faithful to them, for they are kept safe in the ark until it lands on the mountains of Ararat somewhere in the Middle East (see map). Do we want God to favor us? We must be faithful.

After the flood, God establishes a new covenant with mankind. In the covenant God established with Adam and Eve, both mankind and all creatures on the face of the earth and the birds ate plants (Genesis 1:30). After the covenant given to Noah (Genesis 9:1-17), all people are allowed to eat meat. In Eden animals were friendly with people. Now fear exists between the two. In the corruption of the past there was no evidence of government to temper peoples' behavior— there was wickedness everywhere on earth. In the covenant God establishes with Noah, however, the LORD institutes government and capital punishment for those who kill other human beings (with premeditation, i.e. murder).

Last and most important, in this new covenant God establishes a covenant of peace. The violent judgment the Almighty shot against the world is over— he hangs up his bow in the clouds. The rainbow is a bow of peace, a sign given by God that he will never again destroy the whole world with a flood, even if men are evil. This gives us some comfort that, although we may have local regional flooding, it will never be worldwide. Later, another covenant offers us peace, the new covenant given by Jesus. (more...).

Lessons to Live By

  • We have to remove the old to make things new. Do you feel God is disciplining you? Perhaps God wants to make you new. Submit to His discipline and pray for him to save you or make you a better Christian. (more...)
  • God is gracious, and he saves the righteous. If we walk righteously before him, we can also have God's favor and establish a godly line.
  • The LORD is a promise keeping God. He will save us and give us peace if we turn away from the wickedness of the world and our own wickedness, and call upon him. He will save us from our sins and the flood of destruction in our lives.
  • Like the boat, Jesus saves. Like the door, Jesus is the only way we can be kept safe from eternal destruction. If we accept the sacrifice of Christ on the cross on our behalf, He will bring his covenant of peace to us. We must “get on the boat” to be saved. (more...)
  • Like the bow in the clouds, the Holy Spirit seals God's promise to us who have gotten on the boat (accepted Jesus), so we will not be wiped out as others in their destruction (Ephesians 1:13). We will be awakened to live a new spiritual life both now and forever with him in eternity.

Note: For more insight about Noah and the ark go to more ... There you will find answers to “How could God save so many species of animals and birds and reptiles?” And, “Where did all that water come from which flooded the earth? For more insights about covenants and dispensations, also go to more…

Today's Bible Memory Verses

Proverbs 14:32 (NIV) “When calamity comes, the wicked are brought down, but even in death the righteous have a refuge.”

Proverbs 20:7 (NIV) “The righteous man leads a blameless life; blessed are his children after him.”

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A Look Ahead: Genealogies can be interesting. After the flood are a listing of Family Trees which reveal some of God's purpose. Find out what that is and how to better ensure your branch will be a godly line in our Next Lesson.

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