By RANDY WHITE, D.Min.
Founder and CEO
(Read Part 14)
We are coming to the end of our study on the The Saving Flood, as we are in the middle of the final lesson from this series.
And we are looking at a difficult passage that includes the discussion of a grievous sin committed by Noah. Yet we know from Romans 15:4 that even such a passage as this provides learning that will give us patience and comfort from the Scriptures, leading to hope.
One of the things in this passage that gives us hope is learning that even Noah—a man that God called “a righteous man, blameless in his time” (Gen. 6:9, NASB)—had problems!
Notice what Romans 15:5-6 says:
Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus:
That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In the end, verse 6 presents a unity. That unity is all toward the glory of God. God’s glory comes from our unity, but our unity—if you back up again into verse four—comes from understanding the things that “were written aforetime.”
Therefore, we are to find our unity as believers by coming together around the meaning of the Scriptures, and to take instruction from the things that we can learn from them.
So then, what is really the learning that we can get from this episode of Noah’s life? Well, we may not entirely solve this dilemma or answer all the questions.
The Scriptures are given to us in such a wonderful way—so Divinely inspired—that they faithfully display all of human experience and human nature. It does not hide anything or cover anything up.
God does not spin the story or make some sort of heroes out of His people—who are sinful people like Noah, who got drunk. They had one problem after another. This is true of many people that God used, including David and Peter. The Bible does not give us a cleaned-up version of God’s people. In Genesis 9, we even encounter a situation where Noah is literally naked!
The very greatest saints in the Bible were still tempted and still stumbled and fell. Therefore, we are not surprised when we see these characteristics in Noah’s life.
In fact, every dispensation except the first and the last begin with the ways in which people almost immediately fail the test that is set in place within that dispensation.
Often, we can learn much about a topic or term by studying it the first time that it appears in the Bible. This is the first time we see about wine, and it does not look like there is anything good coming out of this, does it? There is a picture of the danger that comes with wine—including the drunkenness, the shame and the curse.
Since we are told, “Flee also youthful lusts” (2 Tim. 2:22), perhaps we think that temptations like these really only apply to younger people. But we better be careful, because perhaps when we grow past such “youthful lusts,” then we could come to the point of succumbing to pride!
We must instead realize that, like Noah, we never outgrow temptation no matter how old we get. The temptations may change along the way, but we are still prone to sin. I wish that we would grow out of that, but we really do not. This should make us humble. The Scripture says:
Pride goes before destruction,
And a haughty spirit before stumbling. (Prov. 16:18, NASB)
Our church family, for one thing, can help us from becoming the people we might be on our own if we were simply existing all alone with our temptations.
Then we also need to pray for victory, as Jesus stated in Matthew 6:13:
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
Is there more to this passage about Noah and the wine? There are all sorts of interpretations offered for Genesis 9:20-23. Some of them are quite fanciful or even quite shameful. I would never have thought of some of them on my own. But as I look at some of these interpretations, I realize that the Bible does not really say that these things are what happened.
We have to be careful not to make the Bible say more than it says. If you cannot really back an interpretation up with Scripture, then you must be very careful about offering any type of speculation.
Noah woke up and became aware that “his younger son had done” something sinful against him (Gen. 9:24). We do not know how this happened, but we know that there was time for Noah’s vineyard to grow to maturity so that he could have wine. There is time between verses 20 and 21. There was time for such evil to develop in the new world.
Following this incident, Noah offered a prophecy that begins in verse 25. That will be our subject next week when we conclude this entire series on The Saving Flood.
Editor’s Note: This blog article is taken from the following sermon, which you can watch in its entirety here:
(Read Part 16)
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All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the King James Version.
Scripture quotations marked NASB are taken from the New American Standard Bible®,
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