Monday, January 31, 2011

Noah: Blameless In His Time - Genesis 6:9-10


This verse echoes back to the end of Genesis 5, where Noah's lineage was first introduced:
These are the records of the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his time; Noah walked with God. Noah became the father of three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Genesis 6:9-10)
Noah is the second man in Genesis who is said to have walked with God. Enoch, Noah's great-grandfather, also walked with God. While Noah only temporarily escaped death, Enoch totally escaped death: he was not, for God took him (Genesis 5:24).

Noah was not perfect. Jesus Christ is the only man who ever lived without sin. Scripture is clear that even the most righteous of men still sin: Indeed, there is not a righteous man on earth who continually does good and who never sins. (Ecclesiastes 7:20). Noah, like all others, was born in the image of fallen Adam (see Man in the Image of Man); he was not blameless because all of his actions in the first six hundred years of his life were perfect. Rather, he was blameless because God made Him blameless.

Not only was Noah blameless, but Noah was blameless in his time. Out of all the times in human history, Noah's time might have been one of the hardest times in all of history to live a righteous life. There wasn't, as in Elijah's time, seven thousand other men who had not bowed the knee to Baal (Romans 11:4). Noah and the seven others who boarded the ark were the righteous remnant— there wasn't anybody else... At the time that the flood hit, Noah and his family were the only lights still shining forth in a dark and twisted world.

As in Genesis 5:32, Noah's sons are once again listed: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. It may seem repetitive to continue mentioning these men, but it's important to recognize that these are the men who repopulated the entire earth after the flood. Every single man born after the flood can trace his lineage back to at least one of these three men.

Related Posts:
The Pre-Flood World: Filled With Violence (Part 1) - Genesis 6:11-12
Noah's Name: Its Meaning and Significance - Genesis 5:29
Enoch: A Prophet in the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 5:21-24
Who Are the Sons of God? - Genesis 6:1-4
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Quote of the Day #72 - Charles Spurgeon


A quote of wisdom from Charles Spurgeon:
We cannot be certain that a thing is right because it is old, for Satan is old, and sin is old, and death is old, and hell is old; yet none of these things are right and desirable on that account.
~Charles Spurgeon (TN95)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #73 - Augustine
Quote of the Day #69 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #70 - C. S. Lewis
Quote of the Day #71 - Steve Turner
Quote Index

Friday, January 28, 2011

Noah Found Favor In The Eyes Of The LORD (Part 2) - Genesis 6:8

But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD. (Genesis 6:8)
It is important to recognize that Noah did not earn God's favor. No man has ever earned God's favor. No man has ever paid the penalty of his sin. No man has ever blotted out his sin with his own righteousness.

Without Jesus Christ, no man can commune with God. Without Jesus Christ, all men would be lost. Without Jesus Christ, the penalty for sin is left unpaid. Any righteousness which is stained by only the slightest blemish falls infinitely short of Christ's perfection.

Noah did not earn God's favor by his own works. Abraham didn't, David didn't, the Apostle Paul didn't, and neither did Noah. The book of Hebrews contains a lengthy list of well known people from the Old Testament who were saved by faith. In this list, Noah is specifically mentioned:
By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith. (Hebrews 11:7)
It was by faith that Noah was saved. His works demonstrated that He was a redeemed servant of God, but his works did not save him.

Shortly before the flood, men had ceased to live by faith, but instead lived for the sinful and temporal things which they could see. Imagine Noah's isolation at this time in history.... He was one of the only men on the face of the earth who loved God. People often complain in this age of the temptations that are around every corner— that the continuing corruption of society sometimes seems to make living a godly life impossible— but imagine Noah's situation!

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Related Posts:
Noah: Blameless In His Time - Genesis 6:9-10
The Gospel (1 of ∞)
Noah's Name: Its Meaning and Significance - Genesis 5:29
The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Quote of the Day #71 - Steve Turner


This is a masterfully written (rather sarcastic) poem by Steve Turner entitled Creed. While this is a bit longer than the typical "quote" of the day, it will be well worth your time:
We believe in Marxfreudanddarwin
We believe everything is OK
as long as you don't hurt anyone
to the best of your definition of hurt,
and to the best of your knowledge.

We believe in sex before, during, and
after marriage.
We believe in the therapy of sin.
We believe that adultery is fun.
We believe that sodomy’s OK.
We believe that taboos are taboo.

We believe that everything's getting better
despite evidence to the contrary.
The evidence must be investigated
And you can prove anything with evidence.

We believe there's something in horoscopes
UFO's and bent spoons.
Jesus was a good man just like Buddha,
Mohammed, and ourselves.
He was a good moral teacher though we think
His good morals were bad.

We believe that all religions are basically the same-
at least the one that we read was.
They all believe in love and goodness.
They only differ on matters of creation,
sin, heaven, hell, God, and salvation.

We believe that after death comes the Nothing
Because when you ask the dead what happens
they say nothing.
If death is not the end, if the dead have lied, then its
compulsory heaven for all
excepting perhaps
Hitler, Stalin, and Genghis Kahn

We believe in Masters and Johnson
What's selected is average.
What's average is normal.
What's normal is good.

We believe in total disarmament.
We believe there are direct links between warfare and
bloodshed.
Americans should beat their guns into tractors .
And the Russians would be sure to follow.

We believe that man is essentially good.
It's only his behavior that lets him down.
This is the fault of society.
Society is the fault of conditions.
Conditions are the fault of society.

We believe that each man must find the truth that
is right for him.
Reality will adapt accordingly.
The universe will readjust.
History will alter.
We believe that there is no absolute truth
excepting the truth
that there is no absolute truth.

We believe in the rejection of creeds,
And the flowering of individual thought.

If chance be
the Father of all flesh,
disaster is his rainbow in the sky
and when you hear

State of Emergency!
Sniper Kills Ten!
Troops on Rampage!
Whites go Looting!
Bomb Blasts School!
It is but the sound of man
worshipping his maker.
~Steve Turner (Creed, first heard Ravi Zacharias read this poem)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #72
Quote of the Day #68 - Jonathan Edwards
Quote of the Day #69 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #70 C. S. Lewis
Quote Index

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Noah Found Favor In The Eyes Of The LORD (Part 1) - Genesis 6:8


Due to the familiarity that most have with the story of Noah, the following verse is usually not particularly shocking:
But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD. (Genesis 6:8)
However, this verse is shocking when the surrounding context of the passage is taken into account. Only one time before the flood does Scripture make mention of a group of righteous men: Then men began to call upon the name of the LORD. (Genesis 4:26) Other than Noah, only one time before the flood does Genesis explicitly mention a righteous man— Enoch the prophet (Genesis 5:24).

After the large time gap between the events in Genesis 4 and the events in Genesis 6, it looked as if all of humanity had corrupted itself upon the face of the earth. Indeed, humanity as a whole had continued in sin. Immorality was everywhere (Genesis 6:1-4). God had striven with man, but man pushed God away. The day in which mankind would face the judgment of God was quickly approaching.

The entirety of the first portion of Genesis 6 does nothing but describe the increasing wickedness of the pre-flood world. Man was totally enslaved to sin, and it appeared that no man would refuse to bow the knee to wickedness. The fall had corrupted man to such a state that recovery appeared impossible. The human race would be blotted out from the face of the earth. Man would no longer multiply; the species would come to a sudden end.

In the midst of such a wicked and perverse world, it is written of Noah that he found favor with the LORD! Up to this point in Genesis, Noah is the only man described to have "found favor with God" (Enoch was described to have walked with God). While the rest of the pre-flood world pursued sin, Noah was living a life of righteousness. While the rest of the world was living as if the world would continue on as it always had, Noah remained faithful to the living God.

Next >>

Related Posts:
Noah Found Favor In The Eyes Of The LORD (Part 2) - Genesis 6:8
Noah's Name: Its Meaning and Significance - Genesis 5:29
Enoch: A Prophet in the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 5:21-24
The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Quote of the Day #70 - C. S. Lewis


A quote from C. S. Lewis
God made us: invented us as a man invents an engine. A car is made to run on petrol, and it would not run properly on anything else. Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other. That is why it is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there.
~C. S. Lewis (Mere Christianity, Book 3, Chapter 4)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #71 - Steve Turner
Quote of the Day #67 - Augustine
Quote of the Day #68 - Jonathan Edwards
Quote of the Day #69 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote Index

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Pre-Flood World Soon To Be Blotted Out - Genesis 6:7


Because of man's total and complete wickedness— because man refused repentance, judgment was soon to come:
The LORD said, "I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them. (Genesis 6:7)
God's judgment had not yet come on the earth. The men of the pre-flood world still had time to repent, but God, in His infinite knowledge, knew that they would not. Thus while the judgment had not yet come, that the judgment would eventually come was certain; for God states in this passage that He will blot out man.

The judgment which was soon to come would be specifically inflicted upon man, but it would also wreck havoc on the entire land, resulting in the destruction of many other creatures. All animals, creeping things, and birds of the sky would be blotted out, except for those on board the ark.

It's important to understand the meaning of the word "blot" in this passage. It means to destroy, to wipe out, to erase. It's used in several other places throughout the books written by Moses (Exodus 17:14, 32:32-33, Deuteronomy 9:14, 25:19, 29:20). Exodus 32 states (emphasis added):
Then Moses returned to the LORD, and said, "Alas, this people has committed a great sin, and they have made a god of gold for themselves. "But now, if You will, forgive their sin--and if not, please blot me out from Your book which You have written!" The LORD said to Moses, "Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book. (Exodus 32:31-33)
The word "blot" does not refer to a partial removing; it refers to totally wiping something out. That something in Genesis 6:7 is man. God would soon wipe out the entire race of man— all of humanity. All of humanity would be blotted out by the flood.

The last part of Genesis 6:7 repeats the reason for which God chose to blot out man: for I am sorry that I have made them (for more information see The LORD Was Sorry That He Made Man On The Earth). Man had consistently chosen to ignore and despise his Creator and the judgment for his wickedness was quickly approaching.

Related Posts:
Noah Found Favor In The Eyes Of The LORD - Genesis 6:8
The LORD Was Sorry That He Made Man On The Earth (Part 1) - Genesis 6:6
The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26
The Cave Men of Genesis - Genesis 4

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Hell's Best Kept Secret - Ray Comfort - Sermon Sunday

The sermon Hell's Best Kept Secret, preached by Ray Comfort, describes the balance of law and grace needed in evangelism. Romans 3:19 explains a purpose of the law:
Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God (Romans 3:19)
To listen to this sermon click here.

Last Week's Sermon: Hell Has No Exits - Leonard Ravenhill
More Sermons Here

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Quote of the Day #69 - Charles Spurgeon


A quote from Charles Spurgeon on the only hope:
I think it very convenient to come every day to Christ as a sinner—as I came at first. You are no saint,” says the devil. Well, if I am not, I am a sinner, and Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. Sink or swim, there I go—other hope I have none.
~Charles Spurgeon (510.287)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #70 - C. S. Lewis
Quote of the Day #66 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #67 - Augustine
Quote of the Day #68 - Jonathan Edwards
Quote Index

Friday, January 21, 2011

The LORD Was Sorry That He Made Man On The Earth (Part 2) - Genesis 6:6


Another question which is commonly asked in response to this passage is the following: Is God's grieving in vain? Doesn't He know who will be saved?
The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. (Genesis 6:6)
All of Scripture is a testimony of God's sovereignty over all of creation. He causes nations to rise and fall. He has all power; the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are regarded as a speck of dust on the scales. (Isaiah 40:15) God also knew from the beginning who would be saved. In fact, the book of Ephesians states that Christ chose us in Him before the foundation of the world. (Ephesians 1:4)

God's knowledge of who would be saved from the creation of the world does not negate man's responsibility. That God judges men for their sin is evidence of the fact that it is man who chooses to rebel. While God knew before He created the world that some would sin and therefore be subject to eternal punishment, this does not negate the fact that God hates sin. God does not force men to sin. Men choose to sin. And when men sin, it offends God; it grieves Him.

Out of all the men in the pre-flood world, Noah and his immediate family were graciously saved. This was not unjust. As can clearly be seen from the account of the flood in Genesis, the men of the pre-flood world were fully deserving of judgment. God wasn't unjust in choosing only to save Noah and his immediate family; rather, He was acting in unfathomable love!

Throughout history, many have scoffed at the doctrine that God saves who He wills to save. But it is the most merciful doctrine of all. Without God's transforming grace, all men would continue to reject God. God did not spare the angels when they sinned (2 Peter 2:4), but he saves men! That God saves men who have committed such terrible atrocities is an amazing reality to behold!

<< Prev

Related Posts:
120 More Years of Mercy - Genesis 6:3
The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26
Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 1) - Genesis 6:1-4

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Quote of the Day #68 - Jonathan Edwards


A quote from Jonathan Edwards:
Adam continued alive near two-thirds of the time before the flood; so that a very great part of those who were alive till the flood, might have opportunity of seeing and conversing with him, and hearing from his mouth, not only an account of his fall, and the introduction of the awful consequences of it, but also of his first finding himself in existence in the new-created world, of the creation of Eve, and what passed between him and his Creator in paradise.

But what was the success of these great means, to restrain men from sin, and to induce them to virtue? Did they prove sufficient? — instead of this, the world soon grew exceeding corrupt; till, to use our author’s own words, mankind were universally debauched into lust, sensuality, rapine, and injustice.
~Jonathan Edwards (The Great Christian Doctrine of Original Sin Defended, Part 1 Chapter 1 Section VIII)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #69 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #65 - R. C. Sproul
Quote of the Day #66 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #67 - Augustine
Quote Index

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The LORD Was Sorry That He Made Man On The Earth (Part 1) - Genesis 6:6


How can it be explained that God was sorry? What does it mean that He was grieved?
The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. (Genesis 6:6)
God, who is all knowing, knew before He created the world that the men of the pre-flood world would rebel. He knew before the creation of the world that He would send a catastrophic flood that would wipe out all but eight. God has a perfect knowledge of all events (past, present, and future).

How then could God be sorry? How could God be grieved when the events unfolding on earth were occurring exactly as He knew they would? It all comes down to a very simple answer: Man is fully responsible for his sin (this is clearly taught throughout all of Scripture). God certainly is sovereign, but man is also accountable for his sin. No man can place the blame for his sin at God's feet.

God hates sin. At its deepest, sin is anything that offends God. All sin is ultimately committed against God (see How Bad Is Sin?). Thus the wickedness of the pre-flood world filled God with sorrow, He was grieved that the men He gave air to breathe only returned thankless breaths of blasphemy. All day long God stretched out his hand to disobedient Israel (Romans 10:21). God also strived with the men of the pre-flood world, but they refused to worship Him.

When men continually set themselves against God, their hearts are only farther and farther hardened. One of the greatest evidences of the common grace of God is that men continue to live and breathe. But once a man dies, God no longer strives with him. Such a man cannot reject God's grace because there is no more grace offered. The only thing left for such a man is the judgment of God— it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment (Hebrews 9:27).

Next >>

Related Posts:
The LORD Was Sorry That He Made Man On The Earth (Part 2) - Genesis 6:6
120 More Years of Mercy - Genesis 6:3
The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26
Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 1) - Genesis 6:1-4

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Quote of the Day #67 - Augustine


This is a quote from Henry Bettenson's translation (1972) of Augustine's book City of God:
...when the good and wicked suffer alike, the identity of their sufferings does not mean that there is no difference between them. Though the sufferings are the same, the sufferers remain different. Virtue and vice are not the same, even if they undergo the same torment. The fire which makes gold shine makes chaff smoke...
~Augustine (City of God (Penguin Classics), 1984, Book I, Chapter 8)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #68 - Jonathan Edwards
Quote of the Day #64 - George Whitefield
Quote of the Day #65 - R. C. Sproul
Quote of the Day #66 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote Index

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5


1536 years had passed since God created the world. In the very beginning, man was perfect. But man sinned. Shortly after the fall, the first man was murdered. Sin did not retreat, but it grew in its prominence. Man sought after temporal things rather than God. Marriage was corrupted. Immorality was totally out of control (Genesis 6:1-4). The entire earth was filled with violence (Genesis 6:13).

Many people think that man is morally sound— that although man occasionally stumbles, overall he is relatively good. Genesis 6:5 stands in contradiction to such reasoning:
Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. (Genesis 6:5)
Note that it wasn't just anyone who saw that the wickedness of man was great, it was the LORD who saw that the wickedness of man was great. Had it merely been a self-righteous hypocrite who saw the wickedness of man, the opinion would have been of little importance. But when God, the holy God, the perfect God, the God who is without sin. When He sees that the wickedness of man is great on the earth, then the "opinion" is certainly worthy of attention.

God sees everything. There is nothing which escapes his sight. Proverbs 15:3 states:
The eyes of the LORD are in every place,
Watching the evil and the good.
It is the LORD who reigns over the entire earth. It is the LORD who is everywhere present. Simply put, God sees absolutely everything. What God saw when He looked upon the earth was only wickedness; He saw that the wickedness of man was great.

All of man's thoughts, desires, and pursuits were totally and completely wicked. Man who was once perfect, the crown of creation. Man who was made in the image of God had become filth, covered and engulfed by sin. Man was enslaved to rebellion— the thoughts of his heart were only evil...

But man's thoughts were not just evil, they were evil continually. The wickedness was unceasing, not just an occasional mistake. The men of the pre-flood world were totally and completely in bondage to sin. The same can be said of all men in this day who refuse to come to Christ— who refuse repentance and salvation. All those who choose to rebel against God live in continual sin, for the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God. (Romans 8:7-8)

Related Posts:
How Bad Is Sin? (Part 1) - The Christian Worldview
All Men Are Guilty - The Christian Worldview
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26
Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 1) - Genesis 6:1-4

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Hell Has No Exits - Leonard Ravenhill - Sermon Sunday

Hell Has No Exits was a sermon preached by Leonard Ravenhill. This sermon discusses, as is implied by the title, the last judgment. Revelation 20:11-12 states:
Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds.
To listen to this sermon click here.

Related Posts:
God's Ways Far Above Ours - Charles Spurgeon - Sermon Sunday
God Saves Bad People - Art Azurdia - Sermon Sunday
Interceding in Prayer - Tim Conway - Sermon Sunday
True Prayer—True Power! - Charles Spurgeon - Sermon Sunday
It Will Cost You Everything - Steve Lawson - Sermon Sunday

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Quote of the Day #66 - Charles Spurgeon

A quote from Charles Spurgeon on atheism:
There are no infidels anywhere but on earth: there are none in heaven, and there are none in hell. Atheism is a strange thing. Even the devils never fell into that vice, for “the devils believe and tremble.” And there are some of the devil’s children that have gone beyond their father in sin, but how will it look when they are for ever lost?
~Charles Spurgeon (667.731)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #67 - Augustine
Quote of the Day #63 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #64 - George Whitefield
Quote of the Day #65 - R. C. Sproul
Quote Index

Friday, January 14, 2011

120 More Years of Mercy - Genesis 6:3


Although Genesis 6:3 stands in the midst of a passage that is difficult to interpret (see Who Are the Sons of God?), the meaning of it in particular is much easier to understand. Regardless whether the sons of God are angels, Genesis 6:3 is clearly talking about man. It was man who was the problem; it was the wicked actions of corrupt men who brought about the flood.
Then the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years." (Genesis 6:3)
Some have misinterpreted Genesis 6:3 and believed that God was making it impossible for a man to reach an age of over 120 years. However, this idea can be easily refuted by the simple fact that after the flood, the first few generations of men lived well over 120 years.

The valid interpretation of Genesis 6:3 is that in 120 years the flood would devastate the earth. God would strive with man for 120 more years. Man would have 120 more years to repent. Man would have 120 more years of mercy; 120 more years of life.

This passage proclaims both a glorious and terrifying reality: there is a time when God's mercy comes to an end. There comes a time in the life of every unconverted man in which God no longer strives with him. For the men in the pre-flood world, they were given 120 more years. But for those living today, there is even less time to repent. Men do not get 120 years to repent today (and most are incapable of even living to such an age).

This passage stands in contradiction to many of the so called Christian teachings of the day. This passage does not teach that there is always another chance. This passage does not teach that God is so deeply in love with man that He would never send him to hell. Rather, this passage teaches that there comes a time when there is no longer a second chance. God's wrath is real. Just as with the pre-flood world, there comes a time for every man who denies God that God's wrath will be released and there will no longer be any hope.

Praise God for His abundant mercy! Praise God for His Son who bears the wrath that His people justly deserved!

Related Posts:
The Total Wickedness of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 6:5
Natural Death - Genesis 5:4-5
Righteous Men of the Pre-Flood World - Genesis 4:26
Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 1) - Genesis 6:1-4
State of the World (2948 BC): Noah's Birth - Genesis 5:28

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Quote of the Day #65 - R. C. Sproul

A quote from R. C. Sproul's book Not A Chance:
God is conceived as a self-existent, eternal being who possesses intrinsically the power of being. Such power is a sufficient cause for creation. Time and chance have no being, and consequently no power. Yet they are able to be so effective as to render God an anachronism. At least with God we have a potential miracle-worker. With chance we have nothing with which to work the miracle. Chance offers us a rabbit without a hat—what's even more astonishing—without a magician.
~R. C. Sproul (Not A Chance (Feb. 1995), pages 14-15)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #66 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #62 - John MacArthur
Quote of the Day #63 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote of the Day #64 - George Whitefield
Quote Index

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 6) - Genesis 6:1-4


Genesis 6 describes the ever increasing cooperation between men and demons. Demonic activity before the flood was on the rise. Not only did men grow in their wickedness, but they chose to give heed to the voice of Satan and demons rather than the voice of God. They had no excuse. They rejected God. They rejected Enoch's preaching (Jude 14). They rejected Noah's preaching (2 Peter 2:5). As Noah grew in age, the number of righteous men steadily decreased. There were so few righteous men on the earth, that 120 years from the flood the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. (Genesis 6:5)

The only man who found favor in the eyes of the LORD was Noah (Genesis 6:8). This alone is a shocking statement. Out of the millions upon millions (and possibly billions) of people who lived on the face of the earth, only Noah remained faithful. Only Noah sought after God. The rest of the world continued on a path to destruction. However you interpret the first four verses of Genesis 6, the purpose of these verses is the same— that despite God's plea, men continued to reject God. They followed in Cain's pattern of refusing repentance. They did not reject Lamech's gross immorality; instead, they embraced it.

God is patient with men and gives them the opportunity to return to Him, but there also comes a time when He is no longer patient. There comes a time when God's mercy comes to an end. Those who lived before the flood were given 120 more years. For 120 years, God would strive with men. For 120 years, men would have the opportunity to repent and live out a life for the glory of God. But the men in the pre-flood world did not repent— and so God sent the flood— for His Spirit does not strive with men forever (Genesis 6:3).

The purpose of Genesis 6:1-4 is to point out that today is the day to turn to God— that today is the day for repentance, for a day is coming when God's patience will end. The great tragedy of Genesis 6 is that out of the millions (or billions) of people on the planet, only eight were saved. Only eight rejected the rampant wickedness in the world and stood for the truth.

<< Prev

Related Posts:
120 More Years of Mercy - Genesis 6:3
Cain and Abel: Sarcastic Reply - Genesis 4:9
Lamech's Song - Genesis 4:23-24
What Does the Bible Say About Polygamy? (Part 1) - Genesis 4:19
State of the World (2948 BC): Noah's Birth - Genesis 5:28

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Quote of the Day #64 - George Whitefield

A quote from George Whitefield:
Works! works! a man get to heaven by works! I would as soon think of climbing up to the moon on a rope of sand!
~George Whitefield (taken from page 54 Anecdotes of the Rev. George Whitefield (1872) by Joseph Wakeley)

Related Posts:
Quote of the Day #65 - R. C. Sproul
Quote of the Day #32 - George Whitefield
Quote of the Day #62 - John MacArthur
Quote of the Day #63 - Charles Spurgeon
Quote Index

Monday, January 10, 2011

Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 5) - Genesis 6:1-4


The last remaining New Testament passage which seems to indicate that strange things were occurring around the time of Noah comes from the book of Jude (emphasis added):
Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe. And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day, just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire. (Jude 5-7)
The first thing to notice about this passage is that it does not list the events in chronological order. Although Jude lists the exodus from Egypt first, this event occurred after Sodom and Gomorrah. The key part of this passage which supports the conclusion that the sons of God are angels is the phrase:
in the same way
In the same way that Sodom and Gomorrah indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, so the angels also did the same. Out of all the passages in the New Testament, this passage provides the strongest support for some sort of angelic immorality. Since it doesn't seem like Jude would simply pull angelic immorality out of nowhere, and since Genesis 6:1-4 is the only passage in the Old Testament that hints at angelic immorality, then it seems likely that Jude was referring to the sons of God in Genesis 6.

How exactly did the angels in Noah's time indulge in immorality and go after strange flesh? There are some who believe that they mated with the daughters of men and conceived demon babies— babies that were half human and half demon. From this it is argued that God sent the flood because these demon babies were unredeemable (because of the cross Jesus can pay for the sins of men, but His sacrifice on the cross cannot pay for the sins of angels— therefore, since these demon babies were part demon, they could not be saved). However, such a view regarding demon babies is nothing more than a fictional fantasy. Genesis 6 is very clear that the reason for the flood was man's wickedness (...not the creation of a new breed of creatures).

The better interpretation is that the sons of God possessed either the daughters of men or their male mates (...or both). Demons were capable of possession from the very beginning (as is evident from Genesis 3 where Satan possessed the body of a serpent). Through the means of possession, demons were somehow able to carry out their desires, but the idea that these demons could pro-create without possessing a human body is simply illogical.

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Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 6) - Genesis 6:1-4
State of the World (2948 BC): Noah's Birth - Genesis 5:28
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Sunday, January 09, 2011

God's Ways Far Above Ours - Charles Spurgeon - Sermon Sunday

God's Ways Far Above Ours was a sermon preached by Charles Spurgeon in 1877. This sermon covers Isaiah 55:8-9, For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. (KJV)

To hear the reading of this sermon or to read it yourself, click here.

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Saturday, January 08, 2011

Quote of the Day #63 - Charles Spurgeon

A quote from Charles Spurgeon:
Man is by nature both an atheist and an idolater. These are two shades of the same thing. We want, if we do worship at all, something that we can see. But a god that can be seen is no god; and so the idolater is first cousin to the atheist.
~Charles Spurgeon (2239.27)

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Friday, January 07, 2011

Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 4) - Genesis 6:1-4


The book of 1 Peter states (emphasis added):
For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the Spirit; in which also He went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison, who were once disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water. (1 Peter 3:19-20)
This passage has been interpreted many different ways throughout church history. One of the difficulties in interpreting this passage is determining what kind of "spirits" are being referred to. One plausible interpretation is that these spirits are the spirits of fallen angles. It seems strange that Jesus would have specifically made proclamation to those human spirits who were disobedient in the time of Noah. Why would the humans who sinned before the flood be singled out? After the flood, men were still wicked. After the flood, men still practiced immorality. If the "spirits" in this passage are indeed the spirits of fallen angels, then this passage provides another short description of demonic activity shortly before the flood.

Peter continues a similar discussion of this topic in 2 Peter (emphasis added):
For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; and if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example to those who would live ungodly lives thereafter; and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment, and especially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires and despise authority... (2 Peter 2:4-10)
This passage, unlike the previous one, directly mentions angels. Once again, these angels are made mention of right around the time of the flood. Most significantly, the phrase in this passage concerning those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires could apply to angels. Such sin was certainly taking place among the ungodly men in Noah's time, in Sodom and Gomorrah, and in Lot's family. Were the angels also practicing immorality?

In both of these passages, Peter writes of strange angelic activity which occurred around the time of the flood. This seems to indicate that that something unusual was taking place when Noah lived on the earth, which means that these two passages could certainly support the interpretation that the sons of God in Genesis 6 are fallen angels (especially the passage from 2 Peter). In other words, if the sons of God in Genesis 6 are angels, then these two passages could be compatible with the claim.

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Thursday, January 06, 2011

Quote of the Day #62 - John MacArthur

A quote from John MacArthur on worship:
If worship for you happens on Sunday morning only, it doesn't happen. If we have to sort of, you know, induce you into it, who are you kidding? It should be a way of life in which you view everything. Like David said, "I have set the Lord always before me."
~John MacArthur (Mary's Praise - 3/28/1999)

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Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 3) - Genesis 6:1-4


The first interpretation, that the sons of God are Seth's descendants, does not have solid support. At first, this interpretation appears as if it might fit. However, upon closer inspection it becomes evident that such an interpretation relies upon a proposition which is impossible to support— that Seth's descendants were especially righteous. To support this view, there would need to be Scriptural evidence that in the early parts of human history, Seth's descendants were typically righteous and that the descendants of all other men were typically unrighteous.

While it is certain from the genealogy in Genesis 5 that there were at least two righteous men in Seth's lineage (at least three if Lamech is included, Genesis 5:28), this still gives no evidence that all of Seth's descendants were generally righteous. In fact, the last verse of Genesis 4 states (emphasis added): Then men began to call upon the name of the LORD. (Genesis 4:26) In the one place in Scripture that refers to the general righteousness of man in the pre-flood world, the righteousness is not presented as a quality which typically belonged to Seth's descendants. Rather, the verse simply states that men (not the descendants of Seth) began to call upon the name of the LORD.

The second interpretation, that the sons of God are powerful kings, finds its support in that kings in the early parts of human history sometimes called themselves sons of God. This, I think, is a better interpretation than the view that the sons of God are descendants of Seth. However, like the first interpretation, this interpretation also lacks internal biblical evidence.

At first, the third interpretation, that the sons of God are fallen angels, might seem obscure. However, such an interpretation has strong internal biblical support. Every time the phrase sons of God appears in the Old Testament, it refers to angels (Job 1:6, 2:1, 38:7, Psalm 29:1, 89:7, Daniel 3:25). Of all of these passages, the ones which are most clear concerning the identity of the sons of God are the passages found in Job. Considering that most believe the book of Job was written in the general time period Genesis was written (probably before), this only adds to the evidence that the sons of God in Genesis are indeed angels. If the phrase sons of God could refer to angels in Job's time, it seems logical to conclude that the phrase could carry the same meaning in Moses' time.

Evidence for the interpretation that the sons of God are angels can also be found in the New Testament. The books 1 Peter, 2 Peter, and Jude all mention demonic activity which can be connected with the sons of God in Genesis 6.

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Summary of Genesis 5

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Quote of the Day #61 - Francis Chan

A quote from Crazy Love, by Francis Chan:
Many Spirit-filled authors have exhausted the thesaurus in order to describe God with the glory He deserves. His perfect holiness, by definition, assures us that our words can't contain Him. Isn't it a comfort to worship a God we cannot exaggerate?
~Francis Chan (Crazy Love (2008), page 29)

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Monday, January 03, 2011

Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 2) - Genesis 6:1-4


Outside of the garden, man grew in his wickedness. Rather than looking to God, man looked to himself. Genesis 4 describes Cain, the first murderer (Genesis 4:8). Even after murdering his own brother, he remained unrepentant and continued in his rebellion against God. The remainder of Genesis 4 describes Cain's descendants. One of his descendants is noted for his immorality and others are noted for their great inventions, but none are noted for seeking God.

At the end of Genesis 4, the birth of Seth (Abel's replacement) is mentioned. Seth, when he had lived 105 years, became the father of Enosh. It is at this point in the book of Genesis that a small glimmer of hope appears; the last verse of Genesis 4 states: Then men began to call upon the name of the Lord. (Genesis 4:26) In the midst of man's growing wickedness, in the midst of man's growing immorality, in the midst of what must have been becoming a demon infested planet, there were some who remained faithful to their Creator.

From Adam to Noah, a period of over 1000 years elapsed. At Noah's birth, Adam had been dead for over 100 years. Seth had just recently died. The earth's population was quickly expanding, but the reality of death was more apparent than ever. Man was becoming weary from all of his work and toil (Genesis 5:29). When Noah was born, there was still some righteousness on the earth, but it was certainly scarce. The wickedness of man had almost hit an all time high. No matter what the interpretation of sons of God is, demonic activity must have been everywhere. The entire planet was enslaved to the one who had deceived Eve. The entire planet was covered with immorality— immorality which probably made Lamech (the first recorded person to practice polygamy, Genesis 4:19) appear innocent.

While the interpretation of the source of the immorality in Genesis 6:1-4 is disagreed upon, all reasonable interpretations of these verses can conclude that they provide an explanation and an example of man's rebellion against God. In particular, these verses provide a brief account of what was occurring from the time of Seth to the time of Noah. However, the exact nature of the activities recorded in the first four verses of Genesis 6 has been the subject of debate for thousands of years. The chief difficulty, as stated earlier, is interpreting the phrase, the sons of God. Throughout history, there have been three main interpretations:

  • The sons of God were Seth's righteous descendants.
  • The sons of God were powerful kings.
  • The sons of God were fallen angels.

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Who Are the Sons of God? (Part 3) - Genesis 6:1-4
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Saturday, January 01, 2011

Quote of the Day #60 - Charles Spurgeon

A quote from Charles Spurgeon:
I notice, however, that, while it is true that our gracious Master was very gentle and patient with those who had real difficulties, yet he did not always answer everybody’s cavil. When the difficulty was raised for the sake of questioning and disputing, when it was mere quibbling, when the enquirer were not in earnest, and did not really wish to know the truth, he often declined to answer them. My Master has no desire to be merely victor in a debate: he did not come into the world to fight a battle of logic just for the sake of winning it.
~Charles Spurgeon (2413.229)

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