Gen 7:16                               The Lord Shut Him In                                5/20/2007      ßà   

 

 

 

 

 

#1.       A Flood of Waters (Gen 7:1,11, Psalm 5:5, 7:11, Rev 22:19)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#2.       Christ Crucified (Gen 7:17, 1Pet 3:18-21, Rom 5:8)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please open your Bibles to the Prophecy of Genesis, Gen 6:18 (2X). Last week we have seen how God instructed Noah to build the Ark. And because God promised to establish His Covenant of grace with Noah (Gen 6:18), everyone under Noah’s care was saved from the wrath of God.

Ge 6:18  But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee.

Everyone in the Ark was saved because they belonged to Noah. Now we know that no human being can be saved on the coattails of another human being. For example, no one is saved because his human father was saved. Therefore, since Noah’s family was saved because of Noah’s preferred status with God, we can see that Noah was a type of Christ, for only the Lord Jesus Christ can save all those whom the Father has named as belonging to the family of Christ. Moreover, we should be constantly aware that all the details of this story of Noah and the Ark are possible only because God caused a string of miracles to occur, which made this salvation possible. For example, God gave Noah the skills to be a ship builder, and God gave Noah the atonement that was suitable to make the Ark water-tight, and God gave Noah the light that was as bright as the noonday throughout the whole Ark, and God made the animals come two by two to Noah in the Ark, and God provided enough food for all of them for a year and ten days. Let us now pick up the story here in Gen 7:1,

Ge 7:1 ¶  And the LORD said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation.

Ge 7:2-3  Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female.            Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth.

Ge 7:4  For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living substance that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth.

Ge 7:5 ¶  And Noah did according unto all that the LORD commanded him.

Ge 7:6  And Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth.

Ge 7:7-9  And Noah went in, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons’ wives with him, into the ark, because of the waters of the flood.   Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth,     There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah.

Ge 7:10  And it came to pass after seven days, that the waters of the flood were upon the earth.

Ge 7:11-12  In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.                And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.

Ge 7:13 ¶  In the selfsame day entered Noah, and Shem, and Ham, and Japheth, the sons of Noah,

and Noah’s wife, and the three wives of his sons with them, into the ark;

Ge 7:14-15  They, and every beast after his kind, and all the cattle after their kind, and every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind, and every fowl after his kind, every bird of every sort. And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life.

Ge 7:16  And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in.

Ge 7:17-19  And the flood was forty days upon the earth; and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth.  And the waters prevailed, and were increased greatly upon the earth; and the ark went upon the face of the waters.         And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered.

Ge 7:20  Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains were covered.

Ge 7:21 ¶  And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man:

Ge 7:22  All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.

Ge 7:23  And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark.

Ge 7:24  And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.

#1.       A Flood of Waters (Gen 7:1,11, Psalm 5:5, 7:11, Rev 22:19)

We must realize that God spoke to Noah many times. First of all, during the 120 years that Noah was building the Ark he had to endure the scorn of all the people around him. But he was victorious in all these verbal assaults, but only by the grace of God. And now he had to say farewell to the world and to bury himself and his family in the Ark. He had to resign in the fact that all his relatives were going to die, since they were under the wrath of God. He had to come to grips with the fact that God is not just a God of love, but He is also a God who is righteous, and who demands a just penalty for sin. And now the time has come for Noah to put himself into he hands of God for an unknown period of time. We can be sure that God spoke to Noah many times to assure him that all is well. Noah was commanded to forsake the world and to live in a sepulchre that he has been digging for himself for 120 years. And God spoke to Noah to comfort him in this matter and God said to him, “For thee have I seen righteous before Me in this generation”. God saw only Noah as righteous. The Bible does not say that God also saw his wife, or his three sons as righteous. We are not told of their righteousness. And now Noah was going to experience firsthand that “God loves the righteous, and God hates all workers of iniquity”, and that “God is angry with the wicked every day” (Psalm 5:5, 7:11).

It is true that God loves men freely, even though He does not find anything in them that is worthy of praise. Even our best works are tainted with sin. Therefore God loves those whom He chose to love out of this world of sinful men. God loves us and adopts us to Himself through the saving work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. Through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross God shows us that He had mercy on us by regenerating us and by erasing all our sins. Then He bestows upon us the grace of becoming the Bride of Christ and sons of God, and He causes us to remain faithful to Him. And thus God not only loves the faithful, but He also loves their works, even though it is God Himself who has caused all these good works to come to pass. Therefore it is the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ which gave dignity to our good works, and not our own good heart, for we do not have such a thing. And thus God crowns His own works. This is what we must have in view when we read the words, “For thee have I seen righteous before Me in this generation”. But all the rest of mankind whom He passed by are still under the wrath of God as much as they have ever been.

Also it is important for us to realize that this flood was an exceedingly great miracle from God. For even if the mountains were only one tenth of the size that they are now, to cover the mountains of all the earth by a rain that lasted 40 days, it was necessary that the rain would pour down at least 75 feet of water per day. Bring this in perspective. Today the place in the world with the highest rainfall will have only 30 feet of water per year. And so, 75 feet per day seems like a water-dam broke and a torrent of water floods the land. It does not seem possible to rain 75 feet per day. Indeed, it was not just raining, but floods of water and mud broke forth out of the earth. God said in Gen 7:11The same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up”. This sentence has a deep and dark spiritual meaning. The Hebrew word that has been translated “the deep” is a dark and threatening word that occurs 36 times in the Bible. It is a word that in many places refers to Hell, or to the abode of Satan and his demons. But Satan is not an independent power. Yes, even the kingdom of Satan must be obedient to the commands of God. And when God decides to bring evil upon mankind, Satan is all the more willing to comply with the demands of God. Literally the fountains of the great deep refer to water and mud pouring forth out of the bowels of the earth. But spiritually the flood of Noah’s days was a picture, or a type, of the destruction of the world on the Last Day. By using these words, “the fountains of the great deep” in Gen 7:11 God is indicating that in the last days He will let the powers of Satan flood the world with false gospels, so that all the unrighteous shall be swept away with the deceptions of Antichrist, and thereby the world shall be ripe for the fiery destruction of the Lord.

I said it is important for us to realize that this flood was an exceedingly great miracle from God. Some people look at the size of the Ark, and they debate within themselves if it was at all possible that God saved a pair of all the animals of the world into that boat, which is much smaller than any other animal zoo in the world. But God said that He did do that. God stated this in Gen 6 and Gen 7, and should we doubt at all that God was able to do this? Will we believe the account of Gen 6 and 7, or will we relegate this to the realm of mythology? Of course we must believe what God said in the whole Bible, from cover to cover, including Gen 6 and 7, and we must believe that God made all this possible through an exceedingly great miracle from God. Perhaps He caused all the animals to go into a one year hibernation. How God did it exactly remains an undisclosed mystery. But we must believe that it did come to pass exactly as God has said, for if we do not believe it we will have deleted from our mind a portion of the Bible, and then we will fall under the curse of Rev 22:19. God says in Rev 22:19, “And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book”. And thus, it is extremely important that we believe all that God has said.

We should also keep in mind that this event described here in Gen 7 has many consequences for our understanding the Rapture on the Last Day. Gods tells us in V.16, “And the Lord Shut Him In”.

Please turn in your Bibles to the First Epistle to the Thessalonians, 1Thes 4:13 (2X). I am sure you are all aware that there are many who believe that after the church has been raptured there will be a glorious 1000 years on this earth, where Christ will be physically reigning from Jerusalem, and the Jews shall be evangelizing the world. It is only after this glorious 1000 years that Judgment Day will come upon the earth. And thus, they say, after the church has been raptured, people will have a second chance to believe Christ and be saved. Well, none of that is actually true, for this is not the scenario that the Bible portrays of the end times. God gave many proofs in the Bible that the Rapture will occur on the Last Day, when Christ shall come to judge all the unsaved in the world. One of these proofs is given here in Gen 7:16. What actually is the Rapture? The clearest scenario of the Rapture is written in 1Thes 4:13-18. God speaks here of saints who have fallen asleep, meaning their body has died, and in their soul existence they are presently reigning with Christ in heaven. We read in:

1Th 4:13-14  But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.               For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

1Th 4:15  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent (or precede) them which are asleep.

1Th 4:16  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

1Th 4:17  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

1Th 4:18  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

In other words, Christ shall come down out of heaven, bringing with Him the souls of all the saints who have died. Then all those saints will be resurrected with new glorified bodies, and their bodies will ascend to meet the Lord Jesus in the air, and there they will be reunited with their souls. At the same time the saints who are still alive will receive their new glorified bodies and will meet the Lord in the air at the same time that the other saints are united with their souls. Then Christ and all the saints shall go to the place where Christ shall judge all the unsaved, and there we shall be judges with Him. This is the event that has been named “the Rapture”, although the word “Rapture” is not in the Bible. But what is the timing of the Rapture? Please turn in your Bibles to the Gospel according to Matthew, Matt 24:37 (2X). First of all, we must recognize that the flood of Noah’s days is a picture, or a type, of the judgment on the Last Day. The Lord Jesus Himself acknowledges this in Matt 24:37-41, saying:

Mt 24:37  But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

Mt 24:38  For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,

Mt 24:39-40  And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.            Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

Mt 24:41  Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

In this passage the Lord Jesus declared that the flood of Noah’s days was a type, or a picture, of the Judgment on the Last Day. What happens on that day? The ones who shall be taken are the ones who shall be raptured to be with Christ forever. The ones who shall be left are the ones who shall be left on the earth, and shall be gathered together to stand before the Judgment throne of Christ. Does this occur on the same day that the Judgment on all the unsaved begins? Please turn again to the prophecy of Genesis, Gen 7:11 (2X). God says in Gen 7:11-13,  

Ge 7:11-12  In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.                And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.

Ge 7:13 ¶  In the selfsame day entered Noah, and Shem, and Ham, and Japheth, the sons of Noah,

and Noah’s wife, and the three wives of his sons with them, into the ark;

In the selfsame day that the judgment on the unsaved began, Noah and his family entered into the Ark. And to make sure we understand that this is the act of God comparable to the Rapture whereby God reserves a people for Himself, God says in Gen 7:16, “And the Lord Shut Him In”. And so, it is without question that the Rapture of the saints occurs on the same day that Christ will judge all the unsaved in the world. The fact that God closed the door means it was God’s will that these particular people and these particular animals were saved from the destruction that came upon the entire world. And thus, by this action God clearly stated the principle of election: Those who will be saved were chosen by God to be saved from the wrath to come, not for their own good works, not for their faith in Christ, the animals did not have any faith in Christ, but for His own good pleasure God saved them. And He chose to save not everybody in the world, but only a remnant chosen by grace. And thus herein we see again that God crowns His own works. God bestows His favors upon those whom He chose to love, and then God rewards them for their faith and good works.

Now we must consider the flood and the Ark and Noah from another angle. The NT describes Noah’s deliverance from the waters of the flood as a figure of Baptism. How does that fit?

#2.       Christ Crucified (Gen 7:17, 1Pet 3:18-21, Rom 5:8)

Ge 7:17  And the flood was forty days upon the earth; and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth.

God insisted that the flood was over the whole earth, and both the rain and the fountains of the great deep poured forth water and mud for 40 days. God insisted that it was not a local flood, but that it covered the whole earth. Remember we are reading about miracles from God. And so we learn from Noah that it is more profitable to obey God, rather than to try to be a friend of the world. But God did not put this in the Bible to praise Noah, but to invite us to follow Noah’s example. Let us therefore imitate Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and let us diligently work on the task that God has given each one of us, a task equivalent to building a little Ark, a means of helping others escape the wrath of God. And so, it is in this context that God introduces us to the subject matter of Water Baptism. This is a little confusing, for we know that water baptism does not save us, although we might infer from 1Pet 3 that water baptism does save us. Water baptism is something that we do, and something that we do cannot contribute in any way to our salvation, for salvation is only by the grace of God. Please turn in your Bibles to the First Epistle of Peter, 1Pet 3:18 (2X). God teaches us in this passage that Noah’s deliverance from the universal flood was a figure of baptism. Peter does not specifically mention water baptism, although he brings this in context that eight souls were saved through water. It is important for us to understand this passage precisely, for if we neglect to study this matter we might be led astray into another gospel whereby water baptism is made a requirement for salvation. Let us now read God’s commentary on the affairs of Noah through the pen of the Apostle Peter.

1Pe 3:18 ¶  For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit (Lit: in the Spirit):

1Pe 3:19  By which (Lit: In which) also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

1Pe 3:20-21  Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water (Lit: through water).      The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ (Lit: through the resurrection of Jesus Christ).

What is God saying here? Verse 18 speaks of Christ crucified. Christ was crucified only once; He suffered for our sins only once. The word “also” refers to the previous verse, which speaks about our suffering for well doing. Christ also suffered for well doing. But the purpose of His suffering had very great results. His suffering resulted in that He brought us to God. We were enemies of God. We were at war with God, because we were happy in the camp of Satan and we were content with the state of our sins. But the sufferings of Christ were the payment for our sins; not the sins of everyone in the world, but only the sins of those whom He came to save. He was the just, who suffered in the place of the unjust, for God demands that each sin must be paid with an eternity in Hell, and Christ was willing and able to make that great payment for us, in our place. Christ made that payment when we were not yet saints, but sinners, in rebellion against God, for God says in Rom 5:8, “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”. And thus the sufferings of Christ resulted in our reconciliation to God. We are now no more enemies of God, but we are His sons, and we are the Bride of Christ. Christ was put to death in the flesh, but He was made alive in the Spirit, which means that His Father did not leave His Soul in Hell, but brought Him back from the suffering that caused Him the greatest anguish. He was made alive in the Spirit, and immediately went into heaven. Then the following verses speak of Christ in His Spirit essence.

Now verse 19. “By which”, or a better translation is “In which”, meaning in the Spirit, “also Christ went and preached unto the spirits in prison”. Who were these spirits in prison, and how can you keep spirits in a prison? It is from this verse that a false doctrine was born. They say that the souls of the people who died in the flood of Noah’s days were locked up in Sheol, awaiting the judgment of the Last Day. They say that the Lord Jesus, after his suffering and death, while His body was laid in the tomb, in His Spirit essence went to that place in Sheol and preached to those spirits locked up in Sheol. This is a false doctrine. It is absolutely not true, for the Lord Jesus before He died said with a loud voice, “Father, into Thy hands I commend My Spirit” (Lu 23:46), and then He died, and His Spirit went to be with the Father in heaven. How can you keep spirits in a prison? A soul is a spirit, and a soul is in the prison of a body when that body is still alive. For this reason we read in 2Tim 2:26, “And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will”. It refers to people who are still unsaved, who are still in the camp of Satan, and who are taken captive by the Devil at his will. Their soul is imprisoned in their body, and cannot escape, for the body is owned by Satan. And thus the explanation of 1Pet 3:19 must be sought in an event where Christ is preaching to live bodies. Who are these live bodies? Verse 20 explains who these are.

1Pet 3:20, Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved through water.

Did Christ ever in the Spirit preach to the unsaved people who lived in the days of Noah? And the answer is, YES! Please turn 3 pages back to 1Pet 1:10 (2X). God speaks here about the salvation through the atoning work of the Lord Jesus Christ that the OT prophets spoke and wrote about. The OT prophets searched diligently to understand the person and work of Christ. Then we read in:

1Pe 1:10 ¶  Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:

1Pe 1:11  Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.

1Pe 1:12  Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

Verse 11 says that the Spirit of Christ was in them. Thus the Spirit of Christ was also in Noah. We read in 2Pet 2:5 that Noah was a preacher of righteousness. And thus the Spirit of Christ was in Noah preaching to the unsaved of his days, warning them of the judgment to come. But they would not hear for God did not plan to save them. God left them in their sins. Their souls were the spirits in prison to whom Noah preached while the Spirit of Christ was in him. But in verse 12 we read that to the OT prophets it was revealed that they did not minister unto themselves, but they did minister unto us who live in this day and age. We are the beneficiaries of their prophecies and of their writings. And so, let no one say that the OT is just the history of the Jews, and we do not need the OT today. That would be an insult to God, for God designed it so that the OT prophets would be ministering unto us.

This solves the mystery of Christ preaching to the spirits in prison. Let us now return to 1Pet 3:21 and find out how the saving of Noah and his household was a figure of Baptism.

1Pet 3:21, The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The previous verse says that eight souls were saved through water. What happened to these eight souls? They were snatched away from the depravity of this world through the waters of the flood. The waters of the flood separated them from the wicked world that was subject to judgment, and the waters of the flood made them separated unto God Almighty. Baptism means washing. When Christ went to the cross He referred to this process as a baptism, which actually meant that the sins that He bore had to be washed away by Him paying for them the full price that had to be paid. When God the Holy Spirit gives us a regenerated soul, that soul has been washed, for Christ paid for this about 2000 years ago. Christ took our sins and in turn Christ gave us His righteousness. Is this a fair trade? No! But this is what He chose to do out of the great love with which He loved us. This washing of our soul is symbolized in water baptism. Water Baptism is the ceremony which symbolizes a washing of sins which hopefully already has taken place in the soul of the one who is being baptized.

Like the rain was sprinkling the Ark, so water is sprinkled at water baptism. The rain pouring on the Ark symbolized the wrath of God. In water baptism the water that is sprinkled symbolizes the blood of Christ, which is also a manifestation of the wrath of God. But water baptism does not save us. God emphasizes this in 1Pet 3:21, where God says, “not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God”. Therefore we need the washing of our soul more than we need the ceremony of baptism. And so, let us now look at this figure of baptism “as the answer of a good conscience toward God”.

Like Noah, believing the promise of God, gathered his wife and his children together into the Ark so that under a certain appearance of death he might emerge out of death, so it is fitting that we should die to the world, in order that the Lord may make us alive by His Word. For nowhere else is there any security of salvation.

AMEN.                 Let us turn to the Lord in prayer.