Author's Note: All previous volumes of this series are here. The first 56 volumes are compiled into the book "Bible Study For Those Who Don't Read The Bible." Now, “Part Two,” featuring volumes 57-113, is available for sale.
Thanks for joining us. When asked how I choose my Bible study topics, I humbly reply, “God is my co-writer” or “God tells me what to write.” But “humbly” is the operative word. Now, I am doubly humbled because of how “Noah, The Flood, and Jesus” became today’s topic.
This three-part saga began last week when, in Vol. 141 – “Hebrews 11: The Inspiring Faith Chapter,” I quoted the following passage:
“By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith” (Hebrews 11:7).
And then the Lord intervened in my life.
Part 1: Due to Thanksgiving travel, I had written and submitted Vol. 141 days earlier than usual — Monday, Nov. 21, for posting on Sunday, Nov. 27. On and after Nov. 21, I felt a “quiet calling” to write about Noah for today’s study. Then on Thanksgiving Day, that “quiet calling” transmitted through a loudspeaker after I saw this headline:
“Biblical flooding in Saudi Arabia sees cars swept away after King prays for rain.”
“King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud demanded that the people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia pray for rain after recent dry spells, but it appears that they prayed a little too hard.”
The headline and photos of “Biblical flooding” confirmed Noah as my next study topic. (Note: Since this is Bible study and not a political column, I will not render an opinion about why, when the King “demanded” that his people pray for rain, they got a “biblical flood.”)
Part 2: My husband David is an executive with Cross Catholic Outreach, an international charity that begins every workday with a devotion. Then, at dinnertime, David often tells me the passage they discussed. So, on the evening of Tuesday, Nov. 29, David mentioned it was unusual for that day’s devotion to being the gospel verse read in church on Sunday, Nov. 27.
Now this story gets weirder because I never miss church. However, I was absent last Sunday due to a project deadline. Thus, I did not hear the Noah-related gospel reading from Matthew — a warning from Jesus harkening back to the wickedness of man — so painful to God that He destroyed His creation.
Below is the Genesis passage where God “vents” his anger:
“The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. So the Lord said, ‘I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them.’ But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord” (Genesis 6: 6-8).
What follows is the gospel passage read in church on Sunday, Nov. 26, and again at Cross Catholic Outreach on Nov. 28:
“ ‘As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man’ ” (Matthew 24: 37-39). (To learn why Jesus referred to himself as “The Son of Man,” read Vol. 53.)
After David read me that gospel passage at dinner, I was astounded and humbled. Not only was God directing me to write about Noah’s story, but He arranged circumstances so I could hear the words of Jesus — albeit two days late because I had skipped church. Furthermore, David was unaware that my next study topic was about Noah!
Part 3: On Thursday morning, Dec. 1, I began writing this Bible study about Noah. (As if I have a choice of topics.) David is in the back bedroom, getting ready to leave for work. I walk back to ask him a mundane question when David exclaims, “Look, a rainbow!”
Never have I seen a rainbow from the back room windows overlooking the street in the decade we have lived here. Conversely, I frequently see rainbows from the front windows facing the water. So naturally, I was both shocked and overjoyed to see this rainbow because the first rainbow recorded in the Bible appears near the end of Noah’s story. But well before the rainbow, Noah was faithful to God and followed orders so he, his family, and the animals could survive the flood. Let’s read God’s words to Noah about the meaning of the rainbow:
“And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life” (Genesis 9:12-15).
Now, here is an interesting question to ponder. First, God told Noah that he would never use “a flood to destroy all life.” Then in Matthew’s gospel, Jesus uses the Noah analogy:
“.. they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.” Hence, was Jesus referring to a different natural or supernational force that would wipe out all the wickedness that has beset our age? Let’s address that question at another time.
Today, all I know is if the Lord wants to use me as a conduit for His Word, my reply is, “Here am I, send me!” And, pray that He will direct my path as He does for all who believe in Him.
Finally, during these troubled times, we must live our lives so our name will be inserted in this sentence:
“But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord” (Genesis 6:8). Amen to that!
Myra Kahn Adams is a conservative political and religious writer with numerous national credits. Her book, "Bible Study For Those Who Don't Read The Bible,” reprints the first 56 volumes of this popular study. “Part 2,” with the same title, reprints Vols. 57-113. Order it here.