Monday, October 6, 2008

Noah - Rollercoaster Phenom

Genesis 8:2-14 Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed, and the rain had stopped falling from the sky. The water receded steadily from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the water had gone down, and on the seventeenth day of the seventh month the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. The waters continued to recede until the tenth month, and on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains became visible. After forty days Noah opened the window he had made in the ark and sent out a raven, and it kept flying back and forth until the water had dried up from the earth. Then he sent out a dove to see if the water had receded from the surface of the ground. But the dove could find no place to set its feet because there was water over all the surface of the earth; so it returned to Noah in the ark. He reached out his hand and took the dove and brought it back to himself in the ark. He waited seven more days and again sent out the dove from the ark. When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth. He waited seven more days and sent the dove out again, but this time it did not return to him. By the first day of the first month of Noah's six hundred and first year, the water had dried up from the earth. Noah then removed the covering from the ark and saw that the surface of the ground was dry. By the twenty-seventh day of the second month the earth was completely dry.

I realize there are several verses here, but there's a reason for it - I promise. This passage of scripture tells the story of how Noah knew it was time to get off the ark. If we'll remember in the last post, God caused a movement - now the ark has landed and the water is subsiding. He sends out birds and they come and go and come and go and come and go and never come back. This had to be a test of patience.

Have you ever stood in line at an amusement park to wait on a rollercoaster you've been dying to get on? I have. I have waited on a ride for over an hour for a two minute spin - time and time again. Why do we do it? Because we know if we're just patient enough, if we just stick it out long enough - the reward will be great! This is what Noah was doing.

If they would've gotten off the ark too soon - it would've meant a lot of trekking up and down a mountain side because they would've only gotten so far and realized they'd have to turn back because there was no dry ground below. Makes one wonder why God landed the ark on a mountain top. Why did God land the ark on the mountain? Was it to give meaning to the dove? Was it so the mountain lions didn't have to climb uphill? Any takers?

Noah's work was no where near complete. Even after the water had receded and they could walk on dry land, there was nothing left. No homes to move into, couldn't stay in the ark - it was all the way at the top of the hill. Noah would have to build himself a home and plant some crops.

Our work is never finished, but God is good and faithful and promises us that He will always be there and will never give us more than we can handle .

2 wonderful insights:

sailorcross said...

"Our work is never finished, but God is good and faithful and promises us that He will always be there and will never give us more than we can handle."

As I read today's post and came to the end, this is what I needed to hear today, more than anything--to always rest on God's promises because He is always faithful and will never let us down.

My Small Group was doing a study last year, and the moderator did a Bible study on his own--journaling each one of God's promises as he studied the Bible. Then when he felt overwhelmed, he would go back and reread these promises.

And as answers to his prayers came, he would journal them next to the promise that God had made that had spoken to him about this.

As for why God landed the ark on a mountaintop--I look at this as one of God's mysteries--I don't know the answer--only God does.


Kay Martin said...

You make me think Dorothy! That's a good thing. Well, I've been on a word search and meaning of SUMMIT for some time. It's been amazing to see how God and world politics use that word for important points in history.

Atop a mountain...the summit. Ummm, the land has been covered in water. I believe the mountain top will dry out first and most pleasantly. The ground will not be slippery and soaked as long as the plains and valleys. Again God's mercy and grace fall on man.

Also I have learned a phrase: "Above the snake line." Some preachers use the term to call us up the high places in God to dwell continually. In the natural, many people want to build their homes in an altitude above 10,000 feet because the poisonous snakes in Colorado, desert areas, cannot survive in the altitude above 10,000 feet. Can't you just imagine snakes in the valley and plains after the flood?

God is so kind.