Hebrews 11:7, NIV
“By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.”
I’m always very challenged when I read Hebrews chapter 11. This is where the writer gives us a long list of Old Testament saints who have lived by faith and how even though they never knew the Messiah, demonstrated to a very pagan world the truth about God and the wonderful promises that are revealed to us through His Word. They had enormous faith and trusted God without the privilege of seeing or knowing about Jesus, the man who came from God.
Noah tops my list of those who persevered and endured, even when there was no evidence around him that the ark he was building would ever be needed. He just trusted that if God said it would be needed, then God knew best. Such faith is unusual. In our experiential world people want to see something with their own eyes before they will believe it. Noah believed what God had said to him and lived the whole of his life in full expectation that one day the ark would be the most important item on the planet! And he was right.
Our scripture tells us that it was ‘holy fear’ that Kept Noah’s faith fuelled with divine energy. This sort of fear is nothing to do with either being afraid or being in terror, but is a fruit of “love and awe”. His love for God was such that nothing pleased him more than doing what God had asked him to do. And it was in awe of God that he found his place of security in the world that God had made, the almighty God who created all things and before whom we are but a speck of much loved dust!
I often meet people who in later life have regretted not doing the things God had asked them to do when they were younger. They have had to face the reality that even though God has forgiven them for their disobedience, they have, nevertheless missed out on what was God’s best for the earlier stages of their lives. If you are at the younger end of life never forget Noah’s amazing example and choose to live in holy fear of a holy God knowing that His plans and purposes are always His best for us. But if you are at the older end of life and wishing you had been more like Noah when you were younger, perhaps this is a time when you could come back to God and express your sorrow and repentance and ask Him to show you the right way forward for the rest of your days. God is a great redeemer – and He loves to redeem every season of our lives.
Prayer. Thank You, Lord, for Noah’s amazing example of persevering obedience. Help me Lord to be like him and always choose to live my life in loving obedience also, as I trust You with whatever is left of my life. In the Name of Jesus, my Redeemer. Amen.