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Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Adventures with God, part 1

I saw the following “conversation” (one of three, actually) written by a young man named Lev Novak posted on a website (forgive me if I don’t provide the link):

“God: Noah, all the people of earth are sinners. You alone are righteous.

Noah: Thanks God. Long time fan, first time prophet.

God: So, I have decided to smite the entire world with a flood.

(pause)

Noah: Couldn’t you just teach man goodness?

God: No. I’m thinking “flood.”

Noah: So you’d rather just kill every-

God: What part of “flood” do you not understand?”

The act of God flooding the earth is a noteworthy matter for consideration, but is the conclusion correct?

What we call “Noah’s Flood” was not a stand-alone incident and sudden whim of God.  The young man gave the reason for God’s judgment by flood in the very first sentence, “all the people of the earth are sinners.” The Bible says, “The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually . . . but Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” (Gen 6:5, 8) The very wickedness of mankind corrupted the earth and God had to carry through on previous promise.  He was spot-on there.

When God created man (Adam) and placed him in the garden, man was perfect and could enjoy God fully. God told Adam that he could enjoy all creation as God’s vice-regent, only do not eat from one tree, for the day that he does, he will die. The tree had no magical properties about it that caused death, it was Adam’s disobedience. When Adam disobeyed, the fellowship with God was broken and sin entered. The paycheck, the reward for sin is death. Fast-forward to Noah’s time: man has not stopped sinning, only increasing his sinful activity. Man cannot enjoy God if sin is in the way.

Mr. Novak makes Noah ask a question, “Couldn’t you just teach man goodness?” Matter of fact, God did.  We know that Noah himself was the “herald of righteousness” (2 Peter 2:5) and “he condemned the world” (Hebrews 11:7). In other words, he told people how they had offended God with sin and that they needed to repent and walk in righteousness with God.  So for Mr. Novak to put those words in God’s mouth is doing exactly that, because that’s not what God said.

It has never been God’s desire for anyone to perish, but that all should come to repentance.  Mankind was then and still is telling God, “no, thanks” then gets angry when God must carry through on His promise to punish sin.

I do appreciate Mr. Novak’s final words, “what part of ‘flood’ do you not understand?” because that was closer to God’s warning to sinful mankind and Noah’s preaching than God’s supposed and arbitrary fickleness.

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