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#255 – God’s Covenant (Genesis 6:17–18)

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Genesis 6: 17- 18. “For behold oh bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Everything that is on the earth shall die. But I will I establish My covenant with you and you shall come into the ark, you, your sons, your wife and your sons’ wives with you.”

Amid judgment, we see a picture of God’s faithfulness in providing protection for His people from the wrath that is deserved.

So this first verse, verse 17 is a grim picture of a promised flood. God speaking to Noah about flooding the earth and destroying all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Then you get to verse 18 and you see that word but. But, I will establish my covenant with you. And so that that the picture we’ve seen up to this point in Genesis is the wickedness and sinfulness of man deserving the judgment of God and certainly Noah though righteous was not perfect. Yet we see this picture of God saying to Noah, “I’m going to make a way for you and your family to be spared my judgment. To be spared the coming wrath. Come into this ark and you will be protected. You will be provided for.” And here we have in this picture of a covenant God’s love for Noah and his family in making a way, providing a way for protection from the the judgment that all humanity including Noah and his family ultimately deserve.
In this verse in Genesis chapter 6, we are seeing a picture of God’s love for us in Christ. For you, for me, for all who will trust in Him, for all who will come into the ark so to speak. When you think about it, we all deserve the just judgment of God. Every one of us is sinful, has turned from God, deserves the just wrath of God yet God in His love has made a way for you and I to be protected from the judgment we deserve. To be provided for. He has provided a covering for us and that covering is the blood of Christ. You come to Christ, trust in Christ as Savior and Lord. Find your refuge in Him from the wrath that we deserve. This is the picture of the cross. You and I deserve to die. We deserve eternal separation from God. Jesus though has made a way for us to be delivered out from under that judgment. He has provided a covering for us by shedding His blood on our behalf.
This is the greatest news in all the world and so we praise God for His grace in this way toward us and we give our lives spreading His grace in this way through our lives. Right? Like we pray, “God, thank you. Thank you, thank you.” Just think about what I deserve right now. I deserve eternal separation from you. Every single person listening to this we deserve eternal separation from you. We deserve to pay the price for our sin against you. We deserve your just judgment. Your just wrath. God thank you for making a way for us to be protected from it. Oh God thank you in love for sending Jesus to endure the judgment we deserve. To experience the penalty that we should experience to die for us in our place as our substitute. All glory be to your name. Oh God, thank you Jesus for saving us from eternal wrath. Thank you for saving us from eternal judgment. Thank you for saving me. Just shudder to think where I would be without your grace and your mercy.
Lord help us to all be overwhelmed with that grace and mercy and God use our lives to make it known why there’s people around us today that we’re going to interact with who right now are under your just judgment. Your wrath is coming and we know, we know where the ark is, we know that in Jesus there’s protection, there’s salvation, there’s provision, so God use us today. Help us to share the gospel with somebody today. Use us to draw people to you today that they might know the shelter, the safety, the salvation that’s found in Christ. Please, please, please oh God, use our lives for that purpose in view of we know, we know where all of history is headed in view of your coming judgment. In view of impeding wrath. Help us to proclaim your love that others might be saved today. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and president of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, and Counter Culture.
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