“And all flesh died that moved on the earth: birds and cattle and beasts and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, and every man.” Genesis 7:21
Noah was likely to be well-known, even famous for his “strange project.” Oddity made him a very reluctant celebrity. It seemed ridiculous that anyone would build such an odd-looking sea-faring vessel so far inland without a drop of water in sight. The people called Noah a fool, but he persisted in building. His mandate came directly from God Himself. He was determined to finish. Nothing could be allowed to rob focus from the work of his hands.
The people all gathered to watch the stubborn man hammering away on his ship. “You will see,” he may have told them. “God is going to judge your wickedness and your sin.” His hammering could be heard throughout the region. He became somewhat of a sideshow and people likely came from all over to marvel at his handiwork and to hear him preach with his hammer. He was tireless. The sound of Noah’s hammer seemed to continue through night and day.
Then, one day the people saw something that they had never seen before. Drops of water began to fall from the sky. (Incidentally, this is the first time that “rain” is mentioned in the Bible. It may have been the first time anyone saw such a terrible and frightening thing!) But much to the dismay of the people, the rain didn’t stop! What started out as a “bad hair day” continued and became a disaster as the falling rain began to rise until the people were waist-deep in flood water!
The people panicked with great fear as the water continued to rise! They may have pounded their fists against the outside of the mighty boat, but it was too late. God had closed the door. Noah and his family would not have been able to open up to rescue them, even if they had tried. God had given Noah the mandate to build the boat. Noah had obediently done his part and followed God’s direction and plan accordingly. But now, it was God’s sovereign hand that was in control. The time of warning and waiting was over.
The screams of the people were haunting, but they soon disappeared as the waters overwhelmed them.As the waters rose, they could still hear the sound of Noah’s hammer. It’s echo was still pounding in their ears. “I told you,” it seemed to say. “I tried to warn you!”
Noah persisted to finish the project. He persisted in declaring God’s message of warning, certain destruction and of His way of salvation. Jesus does not save us to be silent.
Like Noah and his hammer, may we continually preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. If people perish, let it be because of their decision; not because of our disobedience to proclaim the message. If they refuse Jesus, I pray that Christ’s disciples are not responsible for their negligence. May it be that all people will hear and be haunted by the hammering of the message; “Jesus saves!”
God accepts us based on His provision. Jesus has become that ark in which all who willingly enter find safety. We are saved by grace. However, our responsibility still remains. The gospel of Jesus Christ must still be preached. Take up your hammer!
Find out more about The Nations Hope. Please visit us at www.nationshope.org
Jason is founder and evangelist for The Nations Hope and lead pastor of Life Tree Church in San Jose, California. He talks a lot.
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