Moses records for us the details surrounding the great flood, yet many in Christendom claim what he wrote was mere fiction, a mythology of the early Hebrews. The New Testament authors, including Jesus Himself, did not take such a skeptical view of the flood. For them, this event is factual history. What makes Jesus, Luke, and Peter wrong and modernist right? Nevertheless, this real event was also really supernatural. The circumstances of the flood reveal this was no ordinary event ever experienced before or since. The uniqueness of this cataclysm should not overshadow the teaching handed down to us through it. God’s declaration of Noah’s righteousness contains an expectation of obedience.
Noah’s redemption and obedience is sealed by the flood waters of baptism. It should not be a surprise to us that the flood is a baptismal act. Through the flood, God returns the earth to its primordial state, signifying the spiritual rebirth of the believer. Through the flood, God cleanses the earth of sin, signifying the believer’s mortification of sin. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is the only sign and seal of redemption, and it is water baptism that conveys this truth to us and for us.
To understand this federal covenant, we must have a biblical answer to the question, Does God punish children for the sins of the parents? In answering this question, we discover both the pervasiveness of iniquity and the source of original sin. We also discover the very important doctrine of imputation, which is the only way sinners are justified. Noah, who is a type of Christ, points us to Jesus, yet he himself is not Christ and therefore not the satisfaction. We know that Jesus is the Second Adam or Second Man and no one else. While Noah was a type of Christ, he was still a son of Adam and was also affected by Adam’s sin.
In light of this, we must understand God’s “seeing” Noah’s righteousness as His declaring that man righteous, just as God “sees” our righteousness through the cleansing and covering blood of His Son. Nevertheless, righteous fathers, as discussed earlier, are charged with passing on covenant truth to their posterity and thereby blessing future generations with righteousness. Wicked fathers, on the other hand, are more likely and more quickly to pass on wickedness.
About the series
The Book of Genesis is the starting point of God’s covenant with His people. This book gives us the historical sketch of the creation, fall, and redemption of the world. Genesis is also a perfect litmus test to gauge whether or not a person fully trusts in the authority, sufficiency, and inerrancy of Scripture.