Genesis 7

* Noah, and his family and the living creatures, enter the ark,

and the flood begins. (1-12) Noah shut in the ark. (13-16) The

increase of the flood for forty days. (17-20) All flesh is

destroyed by the flood. (21-24)

1-12 The call to Noah is very kind, like that of a tender

father to his children to come in-doors when he sees night or a

storm coming. Noah did not go into the ark till God bade him,

though he knew it was to be his place of refuge. It is very

comfortable to see God going before us in every step we take.

Noah had taken a great deal of pains to build the ark, and now

he was himself kept alive in it. What we do in obedience to the

command of God, and in faith, we ourselves shall certainly have

the comfort of, first or last. This call to Noah reminds us of

the call the gospel gives to poor sinners. Christ is an ark, in

whom alone we can be safe, when death and judgment approach. The

word says, "Come;" ministers say, "Come;" the Spirit says,

"Come, come into the Ark." Noah was accounted righteous, not for

his own righteousness, but as an heir of the righteousness which

is by faith, #Heb 11:7|. He believed the revelation of a

saviour, and sought and expected salvation through Him alone.

Thus was he justified by faith, and received that Spirit whose

fruit is in all goodness; but if any man have not the Spirit of

Christ, he is none of his. After the hundred and twenty years,

God granted seven days' longer space for repentance. But these

seven days were trifled away, like all the rest. It shall be but

seven days. They had only one week more, one sabbath more to

improve, and to consider the things that belonged to their

peace. But it is common for those who have been careless of

their souls during the years of their health, when they have

looked upon death at a distance, to be as careless during the

days, the few days of their sickness, when they see death

approaching; their hearts being hardened by the deceitfulness of

sin. As Noah prepared the ark by faith in the warning given that

the flood would come, so he went into it, by faith in this

warning that it would come quickly. And on the day Noah was

securely fixed in the ark, the fountains of the great deep were

broken up. The earth had within it those waters, which, at God's

command, sprang up and flooded it; and thus our bodies have in

themselves those humours, which, when God pleases, become the

seeds and springs of mortal diseases. The windows of heaven were

opened, and the waters which were above the firmament, that is,

in the air, were poured out upon the earth. The rain comes down

in drops; but such rains fell then, as were never known before

or since. It rained without stop or abatement, forty days and

forty nights, upon the whole earth at once. As there was a

peculiar exercise of the almighty power of God in causing the

flood, it is vain and presumptuous to attempt explaining the

method of it, by human wisdom.
13-16 The ravenous creatures were made mild and manageable;

yet, when this occasion was over, they were of the same kind as

before; for the ark did not alter their natures. Hypocrites in

the church, who outwardly conform to the laws of that ark, are

yet unchanged; and it will appear, one time or other, what kind

they are after. God continued his care of Noah. God shut the

door, to secure him and keep him safe in the ark; also to keep

all others for ever out. In what manner this was done, God has

not been pleased to make known. There is much of our gospel duty

and privilege to be seen in Noah's safety in the ark. The

apostle makes it a type of christian baptism, #1Pe 3:20,21|.

Observe then, it is our great duty, in obedience to the gospel

call, by a lively faith in Christ, to come into that way of

salvation which God has provided for poor sinners. Those that

come into the ark, should bring as many as they can with them,

by good instructions, by persuasions, and by good examples.

There is room enough in Christ for all comers. God put Adam into

paradise, but did not shut him in, so he threw himself out; but

when God put Noah into the ark, and so when he brings a soul to

Christ, the salvation is sure: it is not in our own keeping, but

in the Mediator's hand. But the door of mercy will shortly be

shut against those that now make light of it. Knock now, and it

shall be opened, #Lu 13:25|.
17-20 The flood was increasing forty days. The waters rose so

high, that the tops of the highest mountains were overflowed

more than twenty feet. There is no place on earth so high as to

set men out of the reach of God's judgments. God's hand will

find out all his enemies, #Ps 21:8|. When the flood thus

increased, Noah's ark was lifted up, and the waters which broke

down every thing else, bore up the ark. That which to

unbelievers betokens death unto death, to the faithful betokens

life unto life.
21-24 All the men, women, and children, that were in the world,

excepting those in the ark, died. We may easily imagine what

terror seized them. Our Saviour tells us, that till the very day

that the flood came, they were eating and drinking, #Lu

17:26,27|; they were deaf and blind to all Divine warnings. In

this posture death surprised them. They were convinced of their

folly when it was too late. We may suppose they tried all ways

and means possible to save themselves, but all in vain. And

those that are not found in Christ, the Ark, are certainly

undone, undone for ever. Let us pause, and consider this

tremendous judgment! Who can stand before the Lord when he is

angry? The sin of sinners will be their ruin, first or last, if

not repented of. The righteous God knows how to bring ruin upon

the world of the ungodly, #2Pe 2:5|. How tremendous will be the

day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men! Happy they who are

part of Christ's family, and safe with him as such; they may

look forward without dismay, and rejoice that they shall

triumph, when fire shall burn up the earth, and all that therein

is. We are apt to suppose some favourable distinctions in our

own case or character; but if we neglect, refuse, or abuse the

salvation of Christ, we shall, notwithstanding such fancied

advantages, be destroyed in the common ruin of an unbelieving

world.
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