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The Wickedness of Man was Great in the Earth
Dr. Tony Chute, Lead Pastor
Overview: The multiplication of mankind on the earth led to the proliferation of evil where heavenly boundaries were crossed, earthly boasting was common, and the depths of wickedness knew no bottom. God was neither unmoved nor unaffected by such sin, as Genesis poetically describes the Lord grieving to the point of regretting His creation and accurately depicts His determination to blot out His creation. Standing between God’s righteous wrath and mankind’s deserved doom is Noah, who found favor in the eyes of the Lord by living a godly life in evil times. The Lord mercifully warned Noah of the flood to come, instructed him to build an ark in order to survive, and established His covenant as a promise that Noah’s labors were not in vain. By doing all that the Lord commanded Him, Noah not only preserved the lives of his immediate family he also points us to the One whose perfect obedience in the face of the ultimate evil provides eternal life to all who believe.
01. A biblical recognition of our own sin requires us to be thorough in its exposure, grief-stricken in its presence, and in full agreement with its consequences.
02. A biblical solution to our own sin recognizes that God is merciful in revealing our sin, patient in judging our sin, and faithful in forgiving our sin.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION & DISCOVERY
1. What are the possible explanations for “the sons of God” taking “the daughters of man” as their wives? How does each of these possible explanations depict the extent and seemingly irredeemable nature of evil on the earth at the time of Noah? How would you compare the evil in Noah’s day to our times today?
2. Who were the Nephilim? What was their chief physical characteristic? What does the phrase “men of renown” suggest about their failure to recognize God? For further insight, compare their attempt to make a name for themselves with the tower builders of Genesis 11:4. How does this approach to gain personal fame contrast with God’s promise to Abraham in Genesis 12:2?
3. How should we understand the concept of God “grieving” or God “regretting”? How does the use of anthropomorphic language (attributing human characteristics to God) help us to understand God’s relation to His world without ascribing fault or weakness to Him? What other examples of anthropomorphic language can you find in the text? (hint: See verse 8 – God doesn’t have eyes).
4. What did Noah do that enabled him to find favor before the Lord? What would it have been like for Noah to have been the only righteous man in his day? Consider the amount of ridicule he would have received while building the ark and consider that he was a preacher of righteousness at the same time (2 Peter 2:5). How might Noah’s example of faithfulness encourage us today?
5. In what ways is Noah a type of Christ? How does his obedience to the Lord point us to Christ’s obedience on earth? How does his endurance through ridicule point us to Christ’s endurance on earth? How does the righteousness of Christ supersede that of Noah? How does the new covenant Christ made with His disciples supersede that of Noah?
For Further Reading: David Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Old Testament Evangelistic Sermons (Banner of Truth, 1996)