It Was In the Days of Noah
History moves on in its
revelation of the heart of man and of the character of God. From Adam and Eve,
the ones who had it all and weren’t satisfied, to Cain, who only had to come to
God on His terms, but refused, we come now to the next of God’s living legends,
and we are, at last, encouraged. His name is Noah. Isn’t it strange? Adam lived
in paradise and chose to disobey. Noah, on the other hand, lived in a
spiritual desert and chose to walk with God. Adam had no peer pressure
at all. Noah had perhaps as much ridicule and rejection from those around him
as any man who ever lived. Noah lived in one horrible world. Noah lived in the
house that sin built. Let’s lay the groundwork by looking at that world. We
will begin reading in Genesis 6:5:
And God saw that the
wickedness of man was great in the earth and that every imagination of the
thoughts of his heart was evil continually. And it repented the Lord that He
had made man on the earth and it grieved Him in His heart. And the Lord said,
"I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both
man and beast and the creeping things and the fowl of the air for it repenteth
Me that I made them." But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. These
are the generations of Noah:
Now here is a threefold
representation of what God saw when He looked at Noah.
1- Noah was a just man.
2- Noah was perfect in
3- Noah walked with
God. (The passage continues:)
Noah begat three sons,
Ham, Shem and Japheth. The earth was corrupt before God and filled with
violence. God looked on the earth and beheld it was corrupt, for all flesh had
corrupted His way upon the earth. And God said to Noah, "The end of all
flesh has become before Me for the earth is filled with violence through them.
Behold, I will destroy them with the earth. Noah, make an ark."
What a picture. Noah lived
in a rotten world. In verse 11, God said the state of mankind as a whole was
corrupt before Him and filled with violence. No one left their doors unlocked.
Women weren't safe on the streets alone. Theft, murder, and rape were on the
front page of every newspaper in Noah's day. It was every man for himself and
no man was safe. Why was mankind so corrupt? We read in verse 5 it is because men
were corrupt. Individuals designed by God for holiness were filled with
wickedness. Why were men wicked? We read the reason for their wickedness
in the second part of verse 5, every imagination of the thoughts of every
heart was only evil continually. There is the root of it. God always
looks on the heart and every single heart was rotten. Every one. Every
heart was rotten all the time because men were wicked. Mankind was corrupt
because men were wicked and they were wicked not because of what they did, but
they did what they did because they were wicked. Their wickedness came
from evil hearts. Man's problem has always been the same. Man is sick from
heart disease as sin infects the human heart. It is important that we
understand the magnitude of the conditions on planet earth at that time. I
think for three reasons it is important that we understand what life was like
in Noah's day.
1- It better explains
the character of God.
When we understand what it was like in Noah's day, we can better understand
what God means when He says He is a God of mercy. If you understand what
it was really like, you can understand better what it means that God is
a God of patience. He waited and waited and waited. Then you can
understand better why God says He must be a God of judgment. Studying
Noah explains the character of God more perfectly.
2- It explains the
character of Noah more perfectly. His courage is very important. To say
that Noah was a man of courage means very little unless you understand what He
was faced with in the way of peer pressure. To say that Noah was a man of faith
means much more if we understand the faithlessness of his surroundings.
3- It explains also the
age in which we live.
We need to understand Noah so that we can understand ourselves. We need to
understand the circumstances in Noah's day so that we can understand the times
we live in. In Luke 17:26-30, Jesus paints a stark portrait of what life will
be like on planet earth at the end of the age before He comes.
And as it was in the
days of Noah, so shall it be in the days of the son of man. They did eat, they
drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage until the day that Noah
entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. Likewise, also as
it was in the day of Lot.
Lot, then, is the
second illustration. Now in three passages of scripture God merges these two
illustrations. God says if you want to see what the end times are like, look at
Lot and look at Noah. If you put the two together and look at the circumstances
surrounding those two societies, you will have a perfect picture of life just
prior to the rapture of the church. It says, for example:
The people ate, they
drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; but the same day that
Lot went out of Sodom, it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed
them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed.
So here in this passage
in Luke, Jesus is painting a portrait of life in the last days. This is what it
1- Jesus puts a stamp
of divine authenticity on the story of Noah and the flood. If the flood did not
happen just as the Bible records it, Jesus had to be either a liar or a fool.
In either case, He could not have been God. Don't let anyone ever tell you that
the miracles of the Old Testament are allegories or fables. Jesus Christ, the
living son of God, refers to Noah and the flood as absolute fact and divinely
2- Jesus reveals more
fully the decadence of the last days and the inevitability of judgment. Read carefully the
stories surrounding Noah and Lot and you will begin to grasp the hold that
Satan is supposed to have on planet earth and on the lives of men and women
just prior to the return of Christ. It is awesome. You will understand as well
that judgment is inevitable.
3 - Jesus gives those
who live in the last days a better picture of what to expect. I think we live in
those days. I think we need a road map of morality to know where the world is
going and where we stand. Jesus gives it to us in Luke 17.
4 - Jesus gives those
who live in the last days and those who study prophecy a better look at Noah
You can turn the table around. If you look at Noah you better understand the
times we live in. If you understand the times we live in, you better understand
the days of Noah. What Jesus is saying is that there are two sides to a mirror
that reflect each other. There are many years separating the two periods of
time, but man is the same and God is the same and the circumstances are the
same. Gods paints these two pictures and holds them back to back. This lesson
will put together these two pictures and consolidate a list of moral elements
that the end times will reflect. There are at least twelve symptoms and/or
similarities between Noah's days, Lot's days, and the last days.
1 - The world at large
will either scoff at or ignore God’s return. They will say, “Where is the
promise of His coming?” The men of Noah's day were not on a campaign to defy God.
They simply had turned Him out of their consciousness. They had written Him out
of their playbook. They had replaced Him with a humanistic philosophy. They
said every man was the captain of his own fate. They weren't anti-God, they
just ignored Him. It was the same thing in Lot's day and it is exactly the same
way today. There are pockets in the world that still acknowledge God, and there
are areas in the world that are in violent conflict with the very name of
Jesus. As the scripture foretold, in the last days, these nations will rise up
and defy God. But the vast majority of the "free world" is not free.
They have chosen the path of secular humanism. They fashion God with their own
hands and they don't like or need their own blasphemous creation of deity so
they place it and Him on a shelf to gather dust. These people live life as if
the real Jehovah God does not exist. They deny there is a hell and thus reserve
themselves a place therein. It is no longer that God is dead, it is simply that
God is not important. As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be in the days
of the coming of the son of man.
2- There will be a
pre-occupation with immorality and perversion. 2 Timothy 3 states
that men will be without natural affection. Romans 1:24-28 states describes man
God gives them up to
uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts to dishonor their own bodies
between themselves. Women changing the natural use into that which is against
nature, (that is becoming lesbians.) Likewise, the men leaving the natural use
of the woman, the men will burn in their lust for one another, men with men
working that which is unseemly, (that is becoming homosexuals.) The men will
receive within themselves the reward for which they are doing. Even as they did
not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate
mind to do those things that are neither proper or decent.
If you read of the
morality (or lack thereof) in Lot's generation in Genesis 19, it will turn your
stomach. It is moral degradation at its lowest point. God says as Christ's
coming nears, morality fades into immorality and immorality fades into
amorality. Prostitution, pornography, and perversion become common and become
acceptable. These activities were the lifestyle in Sodom. The acceptance of
homosexual relationships as an alternate lifestyle is a signal of judgment
coming on the earth. As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be when the son
of man returns.
3- The home will decay
into relative insignificance. There will be no respect for morality, no
respect for the permanence of marriage, no respect for the holiness of the
home, no respect for parents. Divorce will destroy the foundation of the home.
Live-in lovers will ignore the institution of marriage altogether. Sound
familiar? As it was in the days of Noah, as it was in the days of Lot, so shall
it be in the days before the son of man returns.
4- There will be
apostasy and heresy within the church at large.
2 Peter 2:1 There shall
be false teachers among you who shall bring in damnable heresies even denying
the Lord that bought them. Many shall follow their pernicious ways.
2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let
no man deceive you by any means for that day shall not come except there come a
falling away first.
Look at Lot's family.
They were so attracted to the world of perversion and ungodliness that they
understood not the cry for deliverance. So intermarried and intertwined with
the world they were that like a fool listening to headphones, they were
listening to God in one ear and listening to Satan in the other. They were so
confused that they tuned out God to avoid the confusion. They didn't even
recognize God when He came to deliver them. What about Lot's wife? She had
become so enamored with and such a part of the world, her new god, that she
couldn't take her eyes off of it long enough for God to deliver her. As it was
in the days of Noah.
5- Violence and
bloodshed become a way of life. If you read Genesis 6:1-13 you will find out
how safe Noah's community was. Then, read Genesis 19 and you will find out that
Lot's neighborhood went one step farther. Then read Romans 1:17-32 and you will
see what society is like today. The picture focuses in on a society where no
man is safe to walk the streets. No doubt, Noah's family lived in Crimesville
itself. The scripture says that the world was submerged in violence. In Genesis
19 we get the further account of the sick society in which Lot lived. No man or
woman could walk the streets without fear of being molested. Violence and
bloodshed were an accepted way of life. The answer was that people should buy
stronger locks, put burglar alarms in their homes, buy mace to walk the street,
hire more policemen and build bigger jails. Without Jesus Christ, men will be
simply turned loose to murder, steal or rape again. Sound familiar? As it was
in the days of Noah, so shall it be in the days of the coming of the son of
6- Man will hold
contempt for authority. Let's look at Jude verses 7 & 8
Even as Sodom and
Gomorrah and the cities about them, in like manner gave themselves over to
fornication and going after strange flesh, these are set forth as an example of
suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Likewise these filthy dreamers first
defile the flesh, then despise authority, and then speak evil of and even
revile the supernatural powers of heaven.
Lot's land again is our
example. First, multiple perversion existed. His world was characterized by
homosexuality. We read the next step of a nation that accepts this kind of
perversion is absolute rejection of all authority and government. (Every man
doing that which is right in his own eyes.) We read in Romans 1:30 and in 2
Timothy 3 that children in this period of time will become increasingly
disobedient to parents and all forms of authority. As it was in the days of
Noah, so shall it be.
7- Business as usual
will indicate that mankind is oblivious to the coming judgment. Matthew 28 and Luke 17
again tell us that just as in the days of Noah, they ate, they drank, they
married. They were completely oblivious to the judgment. Right up to the very
moment of time that Noah walked into the ark and God shut the door, the people
were oblivious. It was the same in Lot’s day. The Living Bible paraphrases it
They went about their
daily business, eating, drinking, buying and selling, farming and building
until the very morning that Lot left Sodom. Then, fire and brimstone rained
down from heaven to destroy them all. "Yes, it will be business as
usual" Jesus said, "right up to the hour of My return."
Do you think the world
is alarmed about the impending judgment? Not on your life. The signs that say
to the Christian, "Be ready, He is coming soon," simply say to the
unbeliever, "Work harder, work faster, make more, spend more." The
world is riding a roller coaster of greed and pleasure and does not know that
the track is broken. They will be screaming with delight as they round the last
curve only to be hurled off into an eternal canyon of despair forever. It will
be business as usual right up to the day of judgment. As it was in the days of
Noah, so shall it be when the Lord comes again.
8- God will preserve a
remnant of faithful believers. The number may be small relative to the
number of men on earth, but God always has a remnant. When the judgment of the
flood came, God had only one man. He had His Noah and that was all He needed: one
faithful man. When judgment came on Sodom, God had Lot. Was He carnal? Yes.
Weak? Yes. But He had been justified by faith and God delivered him. In the
final hours of history, God will have His remnant and if you are a Christian,
you are part of it. Christians are few in number worldwide, but God is not in
the numbers game. Always, He has amazed the many by empowering the few. As it
was in the days of Noah, so shall it be in the days of the coming of the son of
9- God will call the
remnant to a task. God had a job for Noah to do before the flood came. God
told Noah to do six things:
1) He was to listen
carefully to the Word of God. At a time like this, you pay attention. You
get your instructions carefully. Can you imagine the scene if Noah had his mind
on a football game and God said, "Now listen Noah, I want you to build the
ark 50 cubits wide and 30 cubits high." "Uh, huh, yeah Lord, 30
cubits wide and 50 cubits high," Noah replies. "Now I want you to
make it out of gopher wood," God continues. "Yeah, Lord, balsa wood
would be good," Noah responds. As God continues to give instructions Noah
is only half-listening. So Noah gets outside to start building the ark; He gets
his hammer and his saw, and says, “Now what was I supposed to do?” Can you
imagine how important it was that Noah paid close attention to the exact
Word of God. Judgment was coming. There was no time to play games. Noah had to
listen carefully and submerge himself in what God said. He had to write down
what God said and memorize it.
2) Noah had to do was
to preach the truth.
Jude said that Noah preached the truth to a hard-hearted world. Though nobody
listened, his goal was to expose them to the truth. Their response was up to
them. You may say, "I haven't had much response." You've had more
3) He was to prepare
Ham, Shem and Japheth were his three boys. He had three boys tagging along
watching Daddy build a boat in the middle of his yard, miles from the nearest
water in the middle of a drought. All of the other kids must have been hanging
around making comments on how crazy their Dad was. I can just hear them now, "Boy,
your Dad is some sailor. Ham, there is a new psychiatrist in town. Why
don't you ask him to come help your dad on that boat." But Noah's
responsibility was to prepare his household so that when the time came that the
flood would come, he could say, "Come on boys, let's get on." They
all got on. Some of us need to pay close attention.
4) Stay ready. He didn't know the
hour. He didn't know the day that the flood would come. But he did
know that the flood was coming. He also knew that as the ark got closer and
closer to completion he had become more and more ready. So do we.
5) He had to work
God could have said, "Noah, go sit over there on a hammock, get your
favorite drink to sip on and when you wake up you are going to have the neatest
boat you have ever seen." God didn't do that. God can do
that, but God does the supernatural in natural ways in order bless the believer
while glorifying Himself.
6) Noah was to continue
his walk with God. At
any point that he lost fellowship with God, he lost the battle. Never before
has the church of Jesus Christ had an opportunity greater than what we face
today. Like Noah, we alone know of the coming judgment. We have an ark, His
name is Jesus. Our calling is to bring men and women to the place of safety as
the clouds gather for the storm. Many will scorn, many will laugh, many will be
too busy. Noah had no takers, we will have a few. The urgency of the hour means
that everything secondary must be set aside. We must be ready and get everyone
possible to join us. As it was in the days of Noah, so must it be in the days
before the coming of the son of man. Back now to the similarities:
10- God will grant
extra grace to the faithful and to their families. How powerful the life
of one godly man is where his family is concerned. Noah was faithful and his
whole family was delivered. Lot was justified by faith and his whole family was
called. The jailer was saved and his household as well. The spiritual mantle of
responsibility for our families rests on us. Noah found grace in the eyes of
the Lord. God saw something in Noah's life and his whole family was delivered
before it was over.
11- Judgment will come. God's Word is
faithful. God's righteousness will remain intact. Oh how patient God is, but
when His patience runs its course, when all who will come have come into
the ark, God will shut the door for the last time. When the last Lot has
been delivered from the Sodom of our generation, God's judgment will come. It
must come or else God is a liar and Jesus died in vain. God won't change His
mind about the future. He can't do so. He cannot do that and still be God.
Judgment must come. He has the right. It is His creation. The
illustration that has been used is that of a painter who creates works of art.
He loves it. But imagine a customer looking at one of his paintings and
deciding he doesn't like it, so he rips it up. The customer doesn't have the
right to do that. But, suppose the painter steps back and thinks that the
painting doesn't meet the intentions he had for it; that it does not fulfill
the purpose for which he created it. The painter takes it and rips it up. That
is okay. Why? Because the painter is the creator and he has that right. Not
only does he have the right, he has the responsibility. Otherwise he is
unfaithful to his word and his work.
12- The saints will be
delivered from the wrath of God. Not a drop of rain fell until Noah was behind
closed doors. Not one drop. Though fire fell upon Sodom, until Lot was outside
there was not a spark. First God snatched up His own and delivered them, then
judgment came. I believe that through scripture God always lifts out His
beloved just before the fire falls. I believe the church is going to be
snatched up very soon. Raptured. Taken out of this very mess we are in and then
the Great Tribulation will come. As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it
So much for one
horrible world. That is the way it was when Noah lived. That is the essence of
the condition of the world we live in. But, let's stop one minute in closing
take the next step. Let's look at God. First we will look at how He
feels about what He sees, then at how He responds to how He feels.
God has a heart. God is subject to all
the emotions that accompany personality. Remember, God's emotions or feelings
are not man's emotions lifted into the context of deity, or we will see our
friends and their emotions and compare God to that. No, the feelings that
accompany human personality are derivatives of the feelings of God, not the
other way around. We live and breathe and have our being through Him. So when
you want to see real love you have to see the love of God. We see it in
believers, but we as we do, we see God’s emotions passed through the filter of
our imperfect lives. So, if you want to see perfect emotion, you need to look
at the life of Jesus Christ. Through him the emotions of God are seen in a
perfect man who never sinned.
Now we know from the
scripture that God is capable of, and expresses Himself with at least seven
emotional responses. We need to come to understand this so that we will have a
clear picture of the way God's heart beats.
1- God has the capacity
to possess and express the emotion that accompanies love. Love is an act of the
will. But there is an emotion that accompanies love. When the people saw Jesus
weeping at the tomb of Lazarus, they said, "Oh how He loved him."
The emotion accompanied love. John 3:16 says: “God so loved the
world, He gave.” He couldn't help Himself. It was a response to His
2- God is capable of hate. Proverbs 6:16 - Seven
things God hateth. All of these are reflections of Satan. God hates Satan
and everything He does. God hates what Satan has done to this world. God hates
what Satan has done to your life and to my life. God is capable of hate.
3- God is capable of
Psalm 103:13 - Like a father pities his children, so the Lord has pity on
those who fear Him.
4- God is capable of
1 Kings 11:9 - And the Lord was angry with Solomon because his heart was
turned from the Lord God of Israel who had appeared to him twice.
5- God is capable of
Psalm 147:11 - The Lord finds joy in those who fear Him. The angels in
heaven have joy. They rejoice over one sinner who repents. The day you came to
Jesus Christ as Savior, believe it nor not, the eyes of God lit up. A smile
went across the face of God and the heart of God leaped for joy because another
had been born into the family of God. God is not some cold, dispassionate soul
who sits in heaven without feeling. He is a God of emotion. He is rejoicing at
every sinner who repents.
6- God is god of
The right kind of jealousy. Exodus 20:5 - Our God is a jealous god, a
consuming fire. This is the kind of jealousy that is healthy, protective
7- God is a god of
That is where we are at today. God was a god of grief when Jesus was at the
tomb of Lazarus; when Jesus wept over Jerusalem and said, "Oh, Jerusalem,
Jerusalem, how often I wanted to gather you in, but you said no." God was
a god of grief when the widow woman came out of the city with her dead child
and Jesus felt compassion on her. Jesus gave her son back to her alive. Jesus
knew grief. It was said of God in Genesis 6:6 - He looked at the world and
He was grieved. The literal meaning was God's heart broke in two.
God is not seated in
the heavens today bored and unconcerned about mankind. He is not indifferent.
God is not wringing His hands in glee that at last He is able to send judgment
on the earth. He is not elated. Genesis 6:6 tells us how God feels right now.
It is important to know that God feels and how God feels. His
heart beats with emotions. The scripture says He is grieved. It
means Jehovah God is sitting in the heavens weeping over the lost and vile
condition of His creation just as Jesus wept over Jerusalem. Do you believe
that? Or do you have God so boxed in doctrinal cages that you cannot see the
reality of His personality? God is crying today because mankind is saying
"No," to Him. We are told in Ephesians to grieve not the Holy Spirit
of God. There is a sensitivity about the spirit of God that is wounded when we
disobey. God's grief is an expression of His divine love; the love of a father
who, knowing the potential of his rebellious child, is moved with grief as
again and again and again, He sees his child reject righteousness and give in
Some of you are
parents. You can understand. The father pleads. The father reaches out and
longs for and weeps for his wayward son. Patiently, he waits as did the father
of the prodigal son. All he longs for is to see in the distance the shadow of
his boy coming home. He runs to meet him at break-neck speed. He then kills the
fatted calf and welcomes him home. That is the heart of God. The scripture
teaches that even if there were ninety-nine who were safe, He would leave them
after making provisions for their safety, and go after only one who says,
"I'm coming home." The master shepherd waits for and looks for that
one. How many parents have waited up night after night for their child to come
home. What do they feel inside? A little anger, yes. But, oh, there is grief. A
heart melted by disappointment. Listen, parent, God understands a father's
grief. God understands a mother's grief. He says, I have nourished and
brought up My own children, but they have rebelled against Me. (Isa 1:2) If
you are a grieving parent, lay your head on the shoulder of your grieving
Heavenly Father. He has been there. He understands. In fact, He is there today.
Now multiply the grief over one rebellious child millions times
ten-millions and you will have just a fraction of the grief God felt when He
looked on Noah's generation and when He looked down on Lot's generation. The
phrase God saw literally means that God sent a team from His eyes to
inspect the circumstances to find out the heart of man. His heart broke in two.
Can you imagine how God
feels today? Since Adam, since Cain, since Noah, since Lot, He has paid the
ransom to set His children free. He bought our freedom. It cost Him all
He had, His only Son. The only One who never broke His heart, died for all who
had ever had. Now, we like Adam have it all. Paradise of the heart is ours for
the asking. Paradise in eternity is ours; it is coming. No wonder His
expectations for a world that has tasted the cup of redemption is greater by
far than His expectations of Noah's day. But, today, He looks on this same
sin-scarred world that He looked on before the flood and what does He see?
God sees scoffers,
immorality, decadence, apostasy, violence, contempt and business as usual.
Don't forget the heart of God. It is broken. If God is grieved to tears over
the sinfulness of the world, and you and I have the mind of Christ, how can we
go on living as though it were business as usual? As though God's standards
have changed? The church of Jesus Christ ought to be on its knees before God,
not joining in the pursuits of the world, but setting apart the whole of our
lives before a holy God. God had a plan for Noah. God has a plan for the church
today. He wants us to build the ark. Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord
because Noah walked with God. He wants us to walk with God.
You and I ought to be
laying aside every weight and the sin that so easily besets us. We ought to be
seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness at any cost. We
ought to be men and women with only one goal in life, one purpose in life; and
that is to walk with God. As it was in the days of Noah, so it is today. We
live in Noah’s world. It is corrupt, it is degenerating rapidly, and the
God-ordained principles that hold it all together are being torn asunder one by
one. We, as believers, cannot simply live with a “business as usual” mentality.
These are the last days. Jesus is coming soon. We have an ark to build. Our
task is not to sit around in little groups condemning society or its ills. God
said it would be like this. It is not a call to complain, but a call to battle.
So let’s not be
discouraged. These are, in fact, wonderful times to be alive. We have the
privilege of being the Noahs of our day. We have the plans for the ark, etched
in the eternal scrolls of God’s word. We have the enabling power of His Spirit
to comfort us, to guide us, and to lead us. We have the examples of Noah’s
world and Lot’s world to remind us. We have it all. And all we have to do is
fall down before our precious God and make ourselves totally available, just as
Noah did. There is no time to waste. For as it was in the days of Noah, so even
it is today. God needed a Noah, then. He desperately needs Noahs now. Dear God,
may we become the Noahs you need.
AS IT WAS IN THE DAYS
it was in the days of Noah
it is today,
buying and selling,
Casually going life's
scoff at God in derision
pretend He isn't there,
a time to worship,
Never a need for
violence, and wickedness
become the norm of the hour,
within the church, many stand
Devoid of personal
it was in the days of Noah
His return as well,
will scorn the Judgment,
And laugh at the
thought of hell.
as in the days of Noah
flood of Judgment must fall,
God the ark of Jesus,
Has room enough for
God is looking for Noahs
is looking for men,
trusting His Word remain faithful,
Until He comes again.
it was in the days of Noah
even today it is true,
is looking for Noahs,
And God is looking at