Sermons

Take Heart, have Faith (Genesis 8:1-1:14)

Pastor Anthony Bacino, April 26, 2020
Part of the Exposition of Genesis series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

Introduction:

We now are embarking upon the seventh week of this Global pandemic. We are experiencing a natural disaster along with over 185 other counties. Natural disasters have been happening since the dawn of time. The first was the World Flood. Once Adam and Eve left the Garden of Eden and the age of innocence was over; Satan, Sin, and our Sovereign have wrought conflict, disease, war, plaques and death. The answer to why we have natural disasters is found in the first few chapters of the book of Genesis. God created everything perfect and beautiful.

Satan hates God and since we are children of God, he hates us. Jesus says he comes only to steal, kill and to destroy. John 8:44 “Ye are of [your] father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. Satan lied and deceived man and man chose to sin and sin enter the world. Paul wrote that, Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: We learn that after sin there came death, before sin there was no death. Death entered into the world, people die from sickness, disease, tragedies and disasters.

None of us can escape this. It is the nature of the world and as we come closer to the end of man’s rule on earth things are getting worse and worse. I could fill pages of natural and un-natural disasters over the last five decades. They are again more progressive and are greater in intensity just like when a woman gives birth. That is exactly how Jesus described the course of the latter days.

Paul noted that even nature is out of sorts because of sin. In Romans 8:22 he tells us (paraphrasing) we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Therefore, we have hurricanes, tornados, volcanos, tsunami and earthquakes. Nature that is, God’s creation is in pain it is not as God intended it to be.

Now, we have no issues with understanding Satan’s and sin part in all of this but you ask why does God allow all the destructive storms, plagues, and disasters?

When Adam and Eve sinned God placed a curse on the earth and everything became broken corrupted and degraded. That produced…

I. The First World Disaster (Genesis 6:5-7)

1. We read in Genesis 6:5-7 the world became a very wicked place. And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at 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 thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

2. So, it was God who justly brought about the first global disaster we know as the World Flood. Thank God for Noah & His family they lived by faith through this first world disaster.
Imagine living in the Ark for a whole year as Noah, his family, and all the animals. We’d only been coop up in our homes seven weeks and have many appendices they didn’t. If you think your skin is pale and light after staying inside just imagine what Noah and his family went through. It must have been depressing not to see the sun for five months, not to mention being cooped up with around 70,000 animals and no air freshener. Apparently Noah did not hear one word from God during this time. Truly Noah was a just man of God who lived by faith.

3. As Noah floated on the water in this great wooden ark, there was no explanation, no prompting from God and no voice of hope from God. Noah faced what so many faced in their spiritual life: a period of silence and struggle. So now Noah was in this period of silence, encased in a place where he couldn’t see out or get information. He wondered what was going to happen next. Many of us are asking the same question, what is next?

Noah was in a period of self-discovery… Remember that God closed the door through which the animals and people entered the ark. Noah couldn’t see out, or if he could see out, it was only through the window that was near the top, so he could only look upward from himself. In fact, one of the problems of this text is how Noah would discover whether the ground was dry. He couldn’t see down to what was beneath this floating structure.

4. The Ark landed upon the mountains of Ararat after floating silently for 150 days without Noah being able to see where he was going, having no idea of the conditions outside the boat, wondering if it would ever come to an end, the hope began to come in stages. The first thing God did was send a wind. Just the simple facts that the wind was blowing (which the Spirit of God uses as his own image in the New Testament), the boat was beginning to move again, and the water would eventually recede, were reminders to Noah that God had not forgotten him.

5. As the water receded, the boat came to a place where it rested. The boat moved by the breath of God, and then stopped by the purpose of God. And Noah realized that indeed God hadn’t forgotten him, that there was going to be an end to this story, he didn’t know what.

God remembered Noah, his family and all the wild animals and livestock that were in the ark. God has not forgotten you either. He will never abandon His own. The just shall live by Faith. Yes, God is challenging your faith….

Application:
Some of us are asking, maybe even you, “Why, if God is a God of love, would He allow this to happen?” My response is that when God created the world, He placed certain natural and spiritual laws in place. When they are broken, they bring predicted results. At times, His permissive will lets’ man endure the consequences of man’s actions. At other times, through reasons known only to Him, He works miracles to supersede those laws. We come to learn as Noah by faith that we can trust our heavenly father, even amidst harsh times he has our best interest heart. I myself notice in these times…

II. Seven Purposes of Disasters

1. Disasters Reminds us of the Curse of Sin: When God created the earth, it was a beautiful paradise, but man’s sin brought a curse upon the earth and the freedom for Satan to kill and cause great destruction through natural disasters, wars, hurricanes. Satan’s ability to do this is documented in the Bible we know this from our study of the book of Job.

2. Disasters make us realize that we need each other: God’s ultimate goal for all of us is to experience and demonstrate genuine love. Love is built on recognition of mutual need and a joy in giving to that need. “Greater love has no one than this that someone lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13)

3. Disasters make us to sort out our priorities: During a time of disaster, we realize that relationships are more important than things. We miss our loved ones our friends our church fellowship and we appreciate them more. We realize our relationship with our heavenly Father by Faith in His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul said, For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: —Ephesians 2:8, 9

4. Disasters give God an opportunity to keep His promises otherwise we would forget we are dependent upon God for everything. God says, “Call on me in the day of trouble. I will deliver you, and you will honor me.” (Psalm 50:15)

5. Disasters call us to Repentance: Disasters serve as a wakeup call to repentance for mankind. Disasters can have a sobering effect upon the human mind. When War breaks out, or an earthquake destroys countless lives and property, or a drought burns the crops and dries up the water supply, or a pandemic victimizes millions of persons, many people call out to God either in curse or prayer. God is working and we must have faith in Him.

6. Disasters exhaust our pride: God’s power is made perfect in our weakness. These times prove our weakness and we must admit our limitations. Sometimes God allows us to go through the fires of affliction to burn away our pride and self -confidence. We will never experience God’s power until we get rid of our pride. James 4:6 expresses this truth—

7. Disasters Challenges Our Faith: We will never grow until we face a problem we can’t handle on our own. God wants our faith to grow continually; therefore, life is a series of problems we can’t deal with by ourselves. Hebrews 11:38a tell us of those with such faith, the world was not worthy. The world is not necessarily friendly to people of faith and the world isn’t worthy of them either.

Conclusion: We must ask ourselves “Are we experience judgment brought upon us due to the spiritual condition of America and for that matter the whole world”? The coronavirus has acted as a reminder of just how rapidly our world can change with events that nobody could have imagine coming. With things quickly changing in the world, we know one thing remains constant and sure — and that is our faith in the Word of God.

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Genesis 8:1-1:14

(KJV)

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