The Ark Rested

Gen. 8:4 "And the ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat."  As we have seen so many parallels between the ark and the Lord Jesus Christ, we notice another parallel.  The judgmental waters had been on the ark from the beginning of the deluge unto the seventh mont, and the seventeenth day of the month.  Now the judgmental waters were no longer on the ark.  The ark had provided a shelter, keeping the judgmental waters away from the inhabitants of the ark.  Once, the judgmental waters were off the ark, there were no longer any judgmental waters to come upon the ark.  The judgment was complete and the inhabitants of the ark were safe.  The ark rested. 

Likewise, the judgment of God was upon the Lord Jesus Christ while he hang upon the cross.  He was suffering the wrathful judgment for a period of time so that those that were chosen in Him would not have to suffer that judgment.  The judgment came not upon the elect family of God.  When Christ arose from the grave after three days and nights in the heart of the earth, the judgment was complete.  There would be no longer any judgment upon the Lamb of God.  He rested from his completed work of redeeming His people from their sins.  The following verses speak to us of this rest after a completed work:

    1.  Heb. 1:3 "Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;"

    2.  Rom. 8:32-33 "Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.  Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."

    3.  Heb. 10:12-14 "But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.  For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified."

Inhabitants of Ark Go Forth

Gen. 8:13-19 "And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry.  And in the second month, on the seven and twentieth day of the month, was the earth dried.  And God spake unto Noah, saying, Go forth of the ark, thou, and thy wife, and thy sons, and thy sons' wives with thee.  Bring forth with thee every living thing that is with thee, of all flesh, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth; that they may breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply upon the earth.  And Noah went forth, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons' wives with him: Every beast, every creeping thing, and every fowl, and whatsoever creepeth upon the earth, after their kinds, went forth out of the ark." 

With this coming forth from the Ark, God fulfilled his covenant promises.  God had chosen all that would be on the ark.  God had instructed Noah of a coming flood and that he was to build an ark and that he, his wife, his three sons, and their wives along with two, male and female, of all animals in whose nostrils was the breath of life, would go on the ark to keep seed alive.  God called the animals into the ark.  God caused the judgmental flood to come on the earth to destroy all that was not on the ark.  God had preserved those on the ark alive.  Now God brings forth all that he initially chose, out into a new world.  All of these things God had promised and fulfilled.  Not one of God's covenant promises failed to come to pass. 

When viewing the covenant of redemption we need to keep our eyes on the end result.  Just as God preserved the inhabitants of the ark alive and brought them over to the new (post flood) world, so God will bring us to the promised end result of his covenant promise made in Rom. 8:29-30: "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.  Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified."  This covenant promise is further explained in Eph. 1:4-5: "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will," and in Eph. 1:11: "In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will."  Thus, we have the promise of a final destination of being conformed to the image of Jesus Christ; of being adopted into the family of God; and obtaining an eternal inheritance. 

Noah worships the Lord 

Gen. 8:20-21 "And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.  And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done." 

Worship involves action on the part of the worshipper.  "Noah builded an altar unto the Lord."  Likewise, it is important that we have an altar to offer up spiritual sacrifices unto the Lord.  Up until the time that God gave the pattern of the Old Testament worship service unto Moses and the children of Israel men built altars of wood, stone, and earth on which to offer their sacrifices.  With the giving of Old Testament worship service, God gave to the children of Israel the brazen altar on which the sacrifices were placed.  Today in the New Testament we have a different altar.  This altar is set forth for us in the book of Hebrews: Heb. 13:10, 15 "We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle…By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name."  Thus, Christ is our altar on which we offer our spiritual sacrifices today.  That is we offer our sacrifices upon the finished covenant work of Jesus Christ who died to redeem us unto God by his blood.  True worship involves praise and thanksgiving to God.  Going through a ritual without actively giving praise or thanksgiving to God is not true worship. 

True worship also requires an offering.  Noah, like Abel, followed the example that God had initially set in making an animal sacrifice.  Noah took of every clean beast and of every clean fowl and offered burnt offerings on the altar.  Notice that he did not offer any unclean beast or fowl upon the altar.  These beast and fowl offerings are pointing us to a far greater offering.  This offering was the "Lamb of God" who is the Lord Jesus Christ who offered himself without spot or blemish unto God and his offering was accepted of God.  The offering that Noah and those who later offered under the law had to be of clean beast and fowls.  The Lord Jesus Christ was the only truly wholly clean offering as he was holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners.  He was the perfect offering. 

Likewise, when we worship God publicly today, we offer the spiritual sacrifices of a broken spirit, of faith, of praise, of thanksgiving, of righteousness, of doing good, and of communicating to the needs of others.   

Noah was praising and thanking God for what God had done for him, his family, and the animals in the ark.  Likewise, we are to praise and thank God for delivering us from the judgment of sin, for giving us spiritual life, and for the hope of eternal inheritance.  We are to praise him for the sacrificial atonement of Jesus on our behalf.  We are also to praise him for the providential and spiritual blessings in our lives. 

The Lord was pleased with the worship and offerings of Noah.  True worship is pleasing unto God.  It is a sweet-smelling savour unto God. 

Two Great Promises 

Gen. 8:21 "And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done. 22 While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease."

Following this great cataclysmic judgmental flood, God made two great promises concerning the welfare of man upon the earth.  The first promise is that God would never more smite again every living thing as he had done before with the flood.  Many today try to teach otherwise.  Some say that the earth along with its inhabitants will be destroyed by an asteroid or by some other cataclysmic event.  The scriptures say, "let God be true and every man a liar."  When God makes a promise because it is impossible for him to lie or to fail, those promises are sure.  This earth will not be destroyed until after the resurrection of the just and the unjust.  You can count on it.  That is not to say that there want be local catastrophes.  However, a general destruction of every living thing will not happen again.

The second promise pertains to the continuity of the seasons upon earth.  When I was a child I used to hear the saying that the bible says that before the end of time you will not be able to tell the seasons apart.  Well that saying was false.  God promised that we would always have the seasons so long as the earth remains.  These seasons are certainly good for the well being on man and all other creatures upon the earth.  This is not to say that there won't be times when some will experience mild summers and harsh winters or long drought periods or extensive rainy periods upon the earth, but there will continue to be summer and winter and seedtime and harvest so long as the earth remains according to the promise of God.