“But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.”
What a simple but significant verse, “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” In the middle of this chapter about increasing corruption on the earth, verse five, just a couple of verses before this, as the Lord saw the wickedness of man was great in the earth, that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil, continually, in a way that leads to God’s judgment and holy wrath being shown in the flood that follows. Yet right here, sandwiched in between this picture of sin and judgment, we find a picture of mercy, of grace, “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.”
Apart from God, we will experience God’s wrath. Our only hope is that God would find favor in us through the life of Christ.
As I was reading that, I just thought, that’s my only hope. That’s your only hope. Our only hope in our life. Our only hope right now is favor in the eyes of the Lord. Left to ourselves, we are full of sin. Left to ourselves, we are destined for holy wrath and judgment. Our only hope is the favor of the Lord. And I think about celebrating Christmas just a couple of weeks ago. And I think about Luke chapter two and the pronouncement of Jesus coming to the shepherds of his birth, “Suddenly there was with the angel, a multitude of heavenly hosts praising God and saying glory to God in the highest. And on earth, peace among those upon whom God’s favor rests.”
The reality is, you put Genesis six together with Luke chapter two, and you realize the only hope we have of favor in the eyes of the Lord is based on Jesus. Is based on him coming and living the life we couldn’t live, of no sin, perfect life. And then him dying on the cross to pay the price for our sin, for the sin of our hearts that deserves the holy wrath and judgment of God. And then his resurrection from the grave, his victory over sin. So that all who trust in him can be clothed in his righteousness. And just think of it, when you put your faith in Jesus as savior and Lord, God forgives you of your sins, cleanses you of all your sins, clothes you in the righteousness of Jesus, so that he now looks upon you as one with the same favor that he looks upon his son.
I think about reading Matthew chapter three, just the other day, with the picture of Jesus being baptized. And a voice from heaven booming, God the Father saying, “This is my son, with whom I am well pleased.” And I just want to encourage you today, if you are in Jesus, if you’ve put your trust in him as savior and Lord of your life, then when God the Father looks at your life, instead of seeing all your sin and evil, instead of seeing all your sin, instead of seeing your past filled with this or that sin, God the Father sees the righteousness of Jesus. And his favor rests on you.
You think, “How is that possible?” That’s only possible by the mercy of God. So God, we praise you for your grace and your mercy. We say together, today as we pray according to Genesis 6:8, that our only hope is in finding favor before you. And we confess there’s nothing we can do to earn your favor. There’s no amount of works we could do to overcome our sin and the evil that is in our hearts, the tendencies in our heart to turn from you. We praise you, oh God, that you have shown favor to us, that you have sent your son to die on the cross for our sins, that he’s risen from the grave. That he’s ascended on high, that through faith in him, we are clothed in his righteousness and filled with his spirit. And you look upon us as your sons and daughters with favor before you, our Father in Heaven.
This is an awesome thought, Oh God. And we praise you for it. And we pray to you to help us to never get over it. Help us to live today in light of your favor toward us in Jesus. Help us to abide in your love. Help us to enjoy your favor that is a gift of your grace. And we pray, God, that you would give us… And God, even as I praise you for your grace… And, oh God, even as we praise you for your grace in our lives, we pray for more grace. God, we need your favor all day long, today and tomorrow. We need you to lead us by your grace and your mercy. Help us, we pray, to glorify you with the grace that you give.
God, we pray for your favor and your mercy, that we might live the full, abundant life that you’ve created us to live as your sons and daughters. God, our only hope is in finding favor before you. And we praise you for the favor we have found through faith in your son, Jesus, and your love for us, your mercy toward us. We praise you in His name. Amen.