“Suspicious package addressed to James Clapper, Sen. Cory Booker recovered in New York, Florida.” “Murdered University of Utah student was extorted before her killing, police say.” “Cops: Cobb tattoo parlor worker sexually assaulted client; owner pointed gun at teens.”
Husband and wife commit suicide. Drug deals go sour and people are murdered. People murdered for two dollars in their pocket. Estranged wife arrested for murdering her husband. Eighty-six-year-old woman beaten and robbed.
We today live in a fractured world, and it seems that it is becoming more so. Sin seems to be rampant, and some would argue that it is getting worse every day. Politics have divided us in this country; and we are divided as in the days preceding the War Between the States. The world is much like the one that existed in the days of Noah; it was a time when “the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually . . . Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was failed with violence.” (Genesis 6:5, 11).
So the Lord acted because of man’s sinful choices.
“So the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” Genesis 6:7
“And God said to Noah, the end of all flesh has come before me, for the earth is filled with violence through them; and behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” Genesis 6:13
“And behold, I myself am bringing floodwaters on the earth, to destroy from under heaven all flesh in which is the breath of life; everything that is on the earth shall die.” Genesis 6:17
God’s actions were not prompted by anger but grief. His actions were not stemming from a lack of love but a lack of righteousness on man’s part. The evil of man grieved God’s heart, and something had to be done.
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Walter Brueggemann stated, “The story is not about the world assaulted and a God who stands remote. It is about the hurt God endures because of and for the sake of his wayward creation.”
The flood reminds us that God did destroy the world years ago because of the sin of man’s heart, and of his promise that he will do the same again when he is ready.
Peter reminds us of this in 2 Peter 3:8-13 “. . . knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.
God is not willing that ____ should perish, but all should come to ________________.
The Lord will come how?
How should we live in preparation for that day?
Most importantly – are we living that way now?
Could right living on the part of Christians help us to look forward to his Second coming, and even “hasten it?” Are our failures to live by the gospel and harboring sins in our lives causing God to hesitate in bringing an end to things?
May we live holy lives in constant preparation for his return!