The important events that Moses records for us in Genesis are events that we all live with the ramifications. Obviously, creation but also the fall and the flood are events in history that impact our daily lives. The historical account of the tower of Babel is another one of those events that we still feel the consequences today.
As we turn to Genesis 10 we have what people have called the “Table of Nations.” There are lessons here about God, his plan, and our place in history that we need to know.
At the end of Genesis chapter nine, we find that though Noah was a man that walked with God he was a man. He was blameless in his generation but not perfect. As JC Ryle said, “The best of men are men at best.”
God is a God of signs because he is aware of our limitations. He knows that we as humans are forgetful and need signs to remind us of truths we already know. God also uses signs to teach us spiritual realities that are hard for us to comprehend but through a sign are easier for us to grasp.
When we read Noah’s story, we must keep in mind the two great truths that are on display before us. The first is that God is a God of perfect wrath. But we also must keep in mind the second truth. God has perfect grace.
The world hates the story of Noah’s ark because it gives an alternative explanation as to why there are millions of dead things buried in rocks all over the earth. It hates that this story shows the righteousness of God and the need for us to be righteous. It hates that God is the rescuer and we don’t rescue ourselves. It hates that God had to clean the world of humanity’s mess and that he’ll one day do it again. This story shows the wrath, the hatred of God against the collective sin of the world. They don’t like that!
Moral ambiguity is the context where we find the story of Noah. It starts with the fact that God sees faithfulness in Noah but God sees evil as well. Since God is a just and holy God he must punish evil but because he is also merciful God who provides salvation. The way that God does this is that God establishes his covenant with Noah. After God does all this we are left with the question, “What will Noah do?”
Chapter 6 begins with a couple of transitional paragraphs and some mystery. In these first eight verses, we find the spread of sin, the depravity of man, and the grace of God.