“By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” – Hebrews 11:7
As with many Old Testament narratives, we see grace amidst judgment. Noah found favour in the eyes of the Lord. As a righteous man, when Noah got out of the ark, he sacrificed to the Lord and like Abel before Him, Noah’s sacrifice was pleasing to the Lord.
The flood narrative can be compared to the covenant established with believers and their seed. The rainbow becomes a visible proclamation of an invisible reality, just like the waters of baptism. However, the object of the sign must be trusted. We must not put our trust in our baptism or in a rainbow, but in the God who supplies both. The rainbow, like witnessing a baptism, is a continual call to conversion (faith and repentance).
In Hebrews 11:7, both condemnation and an inheritance of righteousness are mentioned. If you have been baptized, then you are still outside the ark and in great peril. If you have been baptized, then you must grab hold of that baptism and say in your heart, “Yes, I believe Jesus has washed away all of my sins and He gives me His righteousness.” When you do that, then you may offer a pleasing sacrifice to the Lord. We do not do this with the killing of an animal, but with a living sacrifice of thanks (Romans 12:1-2).
Suggestions for prayer
Thank God for baptism as a visible reminder of what He has done. Ask God to strengthen you so that your life is a pleasing sacrifice to Him.
Rev. Steve Swets was born and raised in NW Indiana. He graduated from Mid America Reformed Seminary in 2007, and he is currently the minister at Redeemer United Reformed Church in St. John, Indiana. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at NTGDevotional.com.