Standing Out in the Crowd

BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY… “But Noah found favor with the Lord.” Genesis 6:8 NLT

The fall of Adam and Eve brought the curse and sin into the world. It was like a cliff effect in time. The moral decline escalated over the early generations. So much so, that scripture records that God resolved,  “I will wipe this human race I have created from the face of the earth.” (Genesis 6:7 NLT)

But in the midst of all that was displeasing to God, there was one man who stood out, Noah. But Noah found favor with God. I like the statements of vivid contrast we see in scripture. Here in the midst of sin and judgment is an expression of grace and a life of righteousness. “But Noah….”  What was true for others was not true with Noah. Others were in the eye of the storm of God’s judgment and wrath. But Noah was safe in the grace of God.

In the New Testament, we find another vivid contrast between judgment and mercy. Paul the apostle writes, By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else. But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much…he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead.” (Ephesians 2:3-5 NLT)

God in the midst of the most dire circumstance is able to make a way. But it takes place through those who are “set apart.” Not only set apart sovereignly by God, but who by their own faith set themselves apart and stand out in the crowd. So much so, that they become those who experience God’s favor and are used by God to do great things.

In a world that is “racing toward judgment” we don’t have to just go along. We don’t need to get tired and give in, but we can resist the downward pull of our own sinful nature and the world around and be those who live under the favor of God.

Noah is described as, “…the only blameless person living on earth at the time, and he walked in close fellowship with God.” (Genesis 6:9 NLT) Our commitment to God’s ways and our fellowship with God will help us to stand out in the crowd and to rise above the “flood” and tide of the world.

Noah’s faith in God and fellowship with God, allowed his family to come under the covering of God’s favor that rested upon him. God selected Noah and his family to be the new beginning for the inhabitants of the earth.

Finally we see Noah’s obedience to the Lord. “Noah did everything exactly as God had commanded him.” (Genesis 6:22 NLT) Noah was asked by God to do something that had never been done, to prepare for an event that had never happened (rain and a flood). It wasn’t an easy task and it was one that required patience and persistence in the midst of ridicule.

The epitaph of Noah life’s is written in the New Testament, “By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith.” (Hebrews 11:7 NIV)

May our lives be lived by faith and in God’s favor. We may be condemned by the world, but we will have a commendation from the Lord and be heirs of the life God has promised.