Flood and Favor (Advent 3, 2020)

God knows which people are His and which people are against Him.  This is not a modern phenomenon.  Why does God put up with people who hate Him, who rebel against Him, and who thumb their noses at the Almighty?

Love. 
Love for those who bear His image which is all humanity,

both the good examples and the bad apples. 

At some point, though, Scripture tells us that “The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time” (Genesis 6:5). That is a most ringing indictment of humanity if ever there was one.  Every inclination.  Only evil.  All the time.  Not a whole lot of wiggle room there. 

The LORD said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created– and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground– for I regret that I have made them.”  8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD. (Genesis 6:7-8)

Were it not for God’s Divine Intervention, a hard restart, it would have been a steep downhill slide with unprecedented velocity and not stopping until the pit of hell swallowed all of humanity up in a gigantic godless gulp.  No one would be left.

So God did what He had to…and I’d argue what He will be doing again.  It won’t be a flood this coming time, but when Jesus returns, God will waste no time in rescuing those who know Him and making sure that those who didn’t want Him get their dying wish.  As actor James Woods writes, “People who get what they want are often surprised when they also get what they deserve.” 

Questions for reflections:

  • God made a distinction between the flooded and the favored.  Only Noah’s family was spared.  Why? 
  • When Jesus returns, who will be rescued? 
  • Noah had to build an ark. His participation was a huge act of faith since the ark was built when there wasn’t even a puddle.  What do we have to do in order to be rescued? Read Ephesians 2:8-9 for insight.  “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith– and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– not by works, so that no one can boast.“

If there’s someone on your heart right now
and you don’t know if they’ve decided to follow Christ,
today is the day to have that discussion. 
And pray for them like this:

Almighty Father, no one can come to You except by faith.  And only those whom You draw to Yourself.  I praise You and thank You that no one can snatch a person who has trusted in You out of Your hands.  I pray Lord right now for________ and I fear for their futures. I ask, Lord, that You would draw them to Yourself and that You would rescue them in the Last Day.  I ask that You would search my heart and know me… moreover that You would know my innermost thoughts. O Lord, I pray that You would teach me through the power of Your Holy Spirit how to live a life that reflects that I know You, a life that brings glory to You. I ask, Lord, that at Jesus’ return You will gather me to Yourself to enjoy eternity with You. For wide is the road that leads to destruction that narrow is the gate, as Your Word instructs us.  I thank You, Lord, for provision, for Your action when I didn’t know you…that Divine Intervention in sending Your Son Jesus Christ to die for my sins.   I thank You that Your promise never to flood the earth again was ultimately culminated in Your Only Son paying the price for all human sin so that–by faith–we could enter behind the curtain and approach the throne of grace to receive Your mercy.  Lord, when I think of those who don’t know You, please draw them to Yourself and Father, I pray that many would be spared and few would be eternally punished.  I know that Scripture says that You are the narrow gate but it also says You desire none to perish, even though we understand that some will.  Be with my family, Lord Jesus, help them to turn from sin and be saved by Your grace.  Be with my friends and help them to see the light and life of Christ through me. Use me, Lord, as Your willing servant, an instrument of peace. I submit myself to serve You.  In Jesus’ Name I pray.  Amen.

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Advent 2020 began Sunday, November 29th and continues to Thursday, December 24th as we celebrate the first coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and look forward to His Second Coming.  “Divine Intervention” is this year’s devotional study. By signing up on the sidebar of my Home Page you can receive these daily devotionals. Or they will be reposted on SeminaryGal’s Facebook page as well.

Together we will see how God has been actively involved all along as Divine Intervention for a hurting world and nations in tumult– Intervention for you and for me when our status as sinners required nothing short of a miracle.

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Acknowledging inquiries about an entire season’s devotionals for your study group’s planning purposes, Seminary Gal’s prior seasons’ Advent devotionals can be accessed via the archives to the right and are as follows: 

  • Last year’s Advent Devotional Series God’s Christmas list explored what might be on God’s Christmas list, learning what He wants from us. It began December 1, 2019.
  • Storyteller began December 2, 2018 and entered into the Christmas story through its telling.
  • The 2017 series Still Christmas, began December 3, 2017 and was the Advent complement to the Lenten series, Be Still and Know that I AM God.
  • The 2016 season devotionals were called Timeless: The Message of Christmas for All Ages” and explored how the message of Christmas is timeless truth, for all ages of people, and for all ages at all times.  Timeless hope, encouragement, grace, peace, and love as we looked into the Word, saw the face of our Lord Jesus, and experienced restoration in His presence.  His goodness and His Gospel are truly Timeless. The 2016 devotionals began November 27, 2016.
  • The 2015 season devotionals were titled Incarnation and involved digging deep–and yes, I mean deep– in this important mystery of Christian theology.  They began November 29, 2015.
  • Carol Me, Christmas! remains one of my most popular offerings and tells the Christmas story through our most beloved Christmas hymns and carols.  You can access all of the numbered devotionals from 2014 via the archives.  They began November 30, 2014.
  • The 2013 series was Emmanuel: When LOVE Showed Up in Person and examined the Prologue to the Gospel of John.  It began December 1, 2013.
  • The 2012 series focused on Expecting the Unexpected…the unexpected, unlikely, and uniquely divine qualities of God’s perfect plan outlined in Luke’s account of the Christmas story.  It began December 1, 2012.

Categories Articles and Devotionals, Devotionals | Tags: | Posted on December 1, 2020

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