I would like to begin this “side step” from the “Prayer” series with a little background about Noah for those readers that may be joining us at this point. If you didn’t know, this post is a side step from that series Prayer that I have done for a few days now. I was in the process of writing Part IX (click the link to read that post) when God spoke to my heart about some things about the Ark that needed to be shared with you. So, I am taking at least this one break (maybe more) from the Prayer series to talk about some comparisons that I discovered in my research and study for my Prayer series. So without further ado, let’s begin.
2 It is the glory of God to conceal a matter,
But the glory of kings is to search out a matter.
Now I am no king or queen, but I am so blessed when I study God’s Word and research to find out what the “hidden” meanings are. God has so many blessings within the Bible and I am honored to find some of them and share my discoveries with you with His help. Now … on to the post.
Noah, a man that walked with God. This was a very righteous man that had daily conversations (prayers) with God. The scriptures do not say exactly this… but with the words that are used to describe this man clearly indicates that he must have had so much prayer time or conversation with God that God considered him a very good and righteous man.
8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. 9 This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God. 10 And Noah begot three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
The earth apparently had become so corrupt that God had had all He could stand. I found a reminder that in Matthew 24:37and Luke 17:26 Jesus, Himself, tells us that this world will become the same as in the days of Noah. See the scripture:
37 But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark.
26 And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: 27 They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.
The Bible also tells us that God is constantly looking for the hearts of people who are right toward Him. God loves mankind and wants to be with His people. He wants to find people that love Him and want to “walk with God”.
“The eyes of God run to and fro upon the earth to show himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is right toward him,”
Since God’s eyes are constantly going to and fro looking … He found one man, in the midst of the corrupt, debase, and wicked society, worthy of saving and carrying out God’s plan to save mankind and His wonderful creation. Noah was the ONLY man on the earth that was righteous. The ONLY man worthy to carry out this Plan for God. That is amazing to me. I am so glad Noah walked with God in all ways so as to save mankind and the animals, etc. of God’s world. I love God’s creation and am amazed nearly every day by the beauty and majesty of it. Seeing the clouds alone can bring tears to my eyes. Remember… God could have made a black and white world and we would never have known the difference. But God loves beauty also and I am glad He does. Also, He loves to share it with us, and I am glad He does!
So here is this one righteous man and his little family (wife, 3 sons – Shem, Ham and Japheth, and their wives). Apparently living a quiet, calm life. Going about their daily thing when their dad (the head of the family) brings the news what God has revealed to him in his time with God in prayer. That had to be a shocker. I wonder… Did they support him from the beginning? Did they ask questions? Or did they take what Noah said at face value and just understand that in his “walk with God” that is what God said and since God said it, Noah was going to do it. I used to have a bumper sticker – years ago – that said … “God said it. I believe it. That settles it.” That is probably just about what Noah said here and his family went along, knowing that Noah was always in communication with God.
OK, so God has found His man. Noah. So then God begins to tell Noah about the ark and how it needed to be built. God was very specific in His instructions. This ark was a massive undertaking and one that brought jeering and ridicule, no doubt. Noah being the strong, righteous man that he was, and obviously very comfortable in his own skin and believed in his God and what he could do with God… these jabs by the public didn’t deter him one bit. He just kept on going. Following God’s direction.
We can relate to that with our walk with God, can’t we? We step out in faith on a path that God places our foot on and others throw questions our way. Or they make comments about what a “crazy” decision that is and so forth. We must not let the world deter us from the walk with our God. God has a plan and His is the best plan. It may not be one that saves mankind and all of creation but it just might be to save one or two souls along the way. And remember, the Angels rejoice and there is a party going on in Heaven every time a sinner is saved by grace.
7 I say unto you that likewise more joy shall be in Heaven over one sinner that repenteth, than over ninety and nine just persons who need no repentance.
The ark itself was massive. The description was this…
14 Make yourself an ark of gopherwood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and outside with pitch. 15 And this is how you shall make it: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, its width fifty cubits, and its height thirty cubits. 16 You shall make a window for the ark, and you shall finish it to a cubit from above; and set the door of the ark in its side. You shall make it with lower, second, and third decks.
To begin with, in my research and studying of the scriptures and the Hebrew translation of some of the words used in the scripture, it is suggested that the water itself represents the believer’s baptism. Now, not that the water alone saves us, but that Noah was in the ark and went through the water…. Here is the scripture first and then I will explain a little further.
18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us[a] to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit, 19 by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison, 20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited[b] in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 21 There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,
So Peter is referring to Noah’s family being saved “through” the water just as when we are saved and we get “baptized” through water. Now the water does not save us but the baptism is a symbol that represents being dead to sin – the old life, and being raised to walk in a new life. Noah and all of the occupants of the ark were saved through the water – they passed through the flood. Their old life left behind and going through the water to a new life.
Now the ark itself has some interesting comparisons as well. First let’s look at a couple of the elements mentioned by God. He told Noah to use Gopher wood. There is actually no tree now nor then that is referred to as Gopher. So the folks in the know – the Bible Scholars – best guess is Cedar. Also, there is another possible explanation. I will use the quote for this explanation. It involves a scribal error on the part of whomever wrote the original manuscript. This quote comes from a website I found – ChristianAnswers.net. There is a wealth of information on there. Anyway, here is the quote on Gopher Wood and here is the link to the page with this explanation on it. This is one of 4 possibilities that this author lists.
“4. Due to the similarity between a “g” and a “k” in the Hebrew alphabet (both resemble a backwards “C”), some have suggested that the first letter in the word “gopher” could be a scribal error, and that the word should be “kopher.” Kopher is a Hebrew word translated as “pitch” in Genesis 6:14. Pitch is a waterproof covering. (No one knows for sure what kind of pitch Noah used). But if this scribal error theory is correct, then the verse would properly read, in effect, “Make yourself an ark of pitched wood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and outside with pitch.”
Now with this in mind, the “pitch” used in the making of the Ark symbolizes the atoning power of Jesus Blood that covers our sins. Here is another quote from another source – The Typology of the Ark. They say it better than I could.
“The word “pitch” is translated from the Hebrew word “kaphar,” which means “to cover.” “Kaphar” is translated seventy times in the King James Bible as “to make atonement.” The simple meaning of “kaphar” is “to cover.” The atonement was made by the Blood of Christ, which provides a covering of sin. Sin must be covered by the Blood of Christ. Romans 4:7 – “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, And whose sins are covered;…”, in the New Testament, gives a quotation from Psalm 32 – Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,
Whose sin is covered.”
I want to close this post out for now with a quote from Ray Steadman’s sermon “A Way Of Escape”.
“This word for atonement speaks of expiation of sin and oneness between God and man. It is the prominent feature of the Bible and its use here hints strongly of the redemptive work of the Lord Jesus who was sent as an ark of safety for the people of God, to carry them through the floods of God’s judging vengeance. You can see how beautifully it fits.”
Tomorrow I will continue this adventure through the scriptures and the comparison of the Ark and Jesus Christ. It is an exciting adventure and journey and one I hope you continue to enjoy with me.
The Song – Amazing Grace – The Singing Men of North Central Texas