But God remembered….

When our sermon series in Genesis left off last week, Noah’s ark was floating on the surface of the waters, populated by two of every kind of animal and eight people – and no place to land. What next? If God had a plan, this would be a good time to make it known!

Think of it. Month after month, and no place to land. Consider these words from James Boice, as he pondered Noah’s feelings after “drifting on the endless world-sea for almost a year, following the onslaught of the Flood.”

He had been a man of faith, ‘blameless among the people of his time’  (Genesis 6:9). But he was human too, and the sea is a very lonely place.

Imagine drifting in a large ship — not merely overnight, but night after night, month after month, for a year — with nothing in sight. During those months, faith or no faith, Noah must have begun to wonder whether God had forgotten him, his family and the animals as they floated like insignificant bits of refuse on the great tide.

Robert Candlish imagined the doubts that Noah may have struggled with in that long year.

“Far down in the unfathomable depths below, lies a dead and buried world. Noah, shut up in his narrow prison, seems to be abandoned to his fate. He cannot help himself.

And in this universal visitation of sin — this terrible reckoning with sinners — why should he obtain mercy? What is he, that when all else are taken, he should be left?

May he not be righteously suffered to perish after all? Is he not a sinner, like the rest? Does he not feel himself to be ‘the chief of sinners’?” Noah’s very spirituality would have opened him up to such feelings. And when he thought like this, he would have felt himself to be abandoned by his heavenly Father much more keenly than I (or anybody else) ever felt abandoned by an earthly one.

And then Genesis 8:1 happened. God remembered. He was ready to act on his covenant promises. And before long, on dry land, a rainbow appeared that signaled peace. Never again.

This Sunday, Erik Thoennes will remind us of the mercies of God, how when He’s ready, a year of bobbing on the open sea becomes the year of His favor. Come and worship our God who always remembers to be faithful.

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