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Bible Commentaries

Wells of Living Water Commentary
Genesis 9

 

 

Verses 1-17

The Earth Renewed and Blessed

Genesis 9:1-17

INTRODUCTORY WORDS

Let us give you some of the parallelisms which are found between Noachic times and events, and those which will mark the last days. Some of these will be a resume of preceding studies in Genesis.

1. Parallelisms relative to the heavens and the earth. In the first chapter of Genesis we have the earth renewed and blessed. God had created the earth in a wonderful state of perfectness, however, under His curse it had become waste and void. Then, afterward, the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters, and God said, Let there be light. Thus, six days ended the first renewing of the earth; and Adam was commanded to replenish the earth.

In our studies of the Flood we have learned how the flood came upon the ungodly, and in today's study we will behold the earth once more renewed and blessed, and we will now hear God telling Noah what he told Adam, "Be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth."

The earth has become in our day once more ripened in its wickedness, and God will soon send once again devastating judgments, turning the earth, as it were, upside down, and destroying many of its inhabitants. Then will the earth once more be renewed and blessed, and the Millennial Reign of Christ will ensue, while men again multiply, and replenish the earth.

The final great cataclysm which will strike the earth will be after the Millennium, when the earth flees away and there is found no place for it. That will be a judgment of fire. Against the day of that judgment, the earth is now stored with fire. Following that great conflagration, there will be a new heaven and a new earth with the New Jerusalem, God's golden City, as its chief glory. The nations of the saved, who inhabit the new earth, will walk in the light of that City.

2. Parallelisms relative to Noachic days and times and those of our own day and times. The days of Noah were marked with a marvelous development along scientific and intellectual lines. The Bible says of men, "The same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown." Today unprecedented developments in invention has changed, within the memory of the present generation, the whole complex of our world. Knowledge has increased, and men are running to and fro through the earth.

The days of Noah also were marked with a rapidly increasing and ripening immorality. The thoughts of men's hearts became only evil continually. The same moral conditions prevail today, as prevailed then. Evil men and seducers have waxed worse and worse; men have fallen to such depths of degradation, that they have to reach up to touch the bottom. There is no sense of shame among men. Impurity and lewdness rule the hour.

3. Parallelisms relative to spirit and angel domination. In the days of Noah there was an evident mixing of demons and fallen angels with men. Of this the Bible definitely speaks when it says: "The angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, He hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day." Again we read of how Christ addressed the spirits in hades, "which sometime were disobedient * * in the days of Noah."

I. GOD BLESSED NOAH (Genesis 9:1 , f.c.)

The 8th chapter opens with the words, "And God remembered Noah." The 9th chapter opens with the words, "And God blessed Noah." Whom God remembers, He blesses.

How often do we sing, "Count your many blessings!" Noah would have had a hard time counting his. Around him he saw the world shorn of its peoples, while he and his own, alone, were saved. He opened his eyes as he stepped out of the ark upon an earth made ready for re-habilitation. The supremacy of God over His creation was established, and Noah's inheritance was unchallenged.

Noah looked out on a world, which God lay at his feet. He was its sole possessor. All earthly blessings, however, are as naught compared to spiritual blessing's. It is in Ephesians we read, "God * * hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in Heavenly places."

When men count their blessings they usually count their temporal blessings their stocks and bonds, their houses and lands. Such things are but for a night. God's spiritual blessings are laid up for us in Heaven. They never fade, or pass away. They are our chief assets. Other things are naught compared to them.

The Apostle Paul counted everything else, honor, position, wealth, religious advancement in the Sanhedrin, all but dung, that he might win Christ. Let our young people pause a moment and count their blessings.

II. GOD COMMANDED NOAH TO BE A BLESSING (Genesis 9:1 , l.c.)

To Noah God said, "Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth." God blessed Noah, that he might be a blessing.

No man should allow the spirit of a miser to dominate him. Blessings should always be turned into benefactions. Receipts should always be sent forth as disbursements.

The Dead Sea receives waters from various sources, but gives forth none. The result is known to all. There are no fish in its bosom; there is no vegetation around its banks; there is that which withholdeth, and tendeth to poverty. The papers of late have been filled with the vast wealth of the Dead Sea. This is doubtless true, but it is a wealth which is self-centered, and which has been hoarded during the centuries. If others will enjoy it, they must take it by force. The Dead Sea refuses to give it up. The Christian needs to beware lest he hoard either his spiritual or his temporal blessings.

The sun in the sky is continually burning up, that others may have light and heat. We should live as Christ lived. He lived among men as One who served. He said, "The glory which Thou gavest Me I have given them."

When God called Abraham, He blessed him, and said, "I will bless thee * * and thou shalt be a blessing." God's unchanging law is, those who bless shall be blessed; and those who curse, shall be cursed.

III. GOD GAVE NOAH SUPREMACY OVER ALL PHYSICAL CREATION (Genesis 9:2-3 )

God says, that when He created Adam He made him lord over all the creation.

When the ark rested on Mount Ararat, God passed on to Noah the same supremacy. We realize that the beasts of the field, although afraid of man, have oftentimes lifted themselves up against him. Ferocious beasts delight in human blood, and yet, man's supremacy must be recognized.

The perfect fulfilment of the Divine law of the subjection of beast and fowl to man, however, awaits the return of the Second Adam. The eighth Psalm declares, "Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of Thy hands; Thou hast put all things under his feet: the sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field: the fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea."

In the Book of Hebrews the Holy Spirit quotes from this Psalm, and refers it to the Lord Jesus Christ. He says of Christ; "Thou madest Him a little lower than the angels; Thou crownedst Him with glory and honour, and didst set Him over the works of Thy hands: Thou hast put all things in subjection under His feet." Then the Spirit adds, "But now we see not yet all things put under Him."

We do see Jesus crowned with glory and honor, and when He comes again He will deliver unto man perfect authority over all tilings. In that day, the little child will lead the bear, and shall sleep in the woods without fear.

IV. GOD'S IRREVOCABLE LAW (Genesis 9:4-5 )

1. God asserts that the life is in the blood. This is true both of beast, and of bird, and of the human race. The life of the body is the blood thereof. It is for this cause that we read, that Christ gave His life. He said, "I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again." We also read that He gave His life as a ransom. He gave His Blood, because He gave His life; for the blood is the life of the body.

When the Lord Jesus came to earth, He took upon Himself our flesh, in order that He might have blood to shed, for, "Without shedding of blood is no remission."

2. God made an irrevocable law, blood for blood. Whosoever sheds man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed. This is true whether it be of beast, or of man. If a wild beast rises up against a man, and sheds his blood, that beast must be killed. If a man rises up against a man, that man's blood must be shed.

Thus did God establish the value of human life, and thus did He place His fear upon the man who sheds blood. God hath said again, "He that killeth with the sword, must be killed with the sword" (Revelation 13:10 ).

There are some who would do away with capital punishment. This is but another mark of man's rebellion against his Creator. Capital punishment is ordained of God, and he who does away with it will only cause man to run riot on the earth in his sinning. The murderer will come out of his covert, and he will boldly shed the blood of his fellows. Blood shed, must be answered by blood shed. Let no man, therefore, rise up against his fellow man and shed his blood. If, however, man's blood is shed, then let the law, which is ordained of God, step in and demand blood for blood.

V. GOD'S ESTABLISHED COVENANT (Genesis 9:9-11 )

1. A covenant which affected all mankind. God said, "I will establish My covenant with you, and with your seed after you." The result is that man today lives under a definite covenant from God. Unredeemed man does not often, if ever, stop to consider the covenant which God has made and sealed; God's covenant, however, remains intact, and God has been faithful to His promise.

2. A covenant that is without any human provisions. God will remain true to His covenant, no matter what man may do, or say. Some pledges from Heaven are provisional, this covenant is without provision.

3. A covenant that relates to Divine judgments. The covenant provides that never shall a flood again destroy the earth; and never, so long as the seasons remain, shall all flesh be cut off from the face of the earth. God's staying of His hand in judgment, may be used as an excuse by man to continue in his sin yet God will be true to His pledge.

4. A covenant that remains entact as long as men remain and the earth endure. It was a perpetual covenant. It was an everlasting covenant between God and all flesh which is on the earth.

Let us stay a moment to study the purport of God's covenant. It meant no more would waters prevail over all flesh. It meant that the long-suffering of God would allow men to go their way, until the end has come.

The covenant does not mean that God does not now revenge sin in any sense, for God's judgments are still in the earth; but God does not move out in a general and universal judgment against the sinner.

The covenant does not mean that God will allow man to go on his evil way unloved and unrestrained, by calls of mercy and grace. Since that day God has sent Christ into the world, the Church has been born, the Spirit has pressed evangelism in every way. In wrath God has remembered mercy.

VI. GOD'S SIGN OF THE RAINBOW (Genesis 9:13 )

God said unto Noah, "I do set My bow in the cloud." How many calls there are from God to man! Every time a man enters a door, Christ is saying, "I am the Door." Every time man partakes of his food, Christ says, "I am the Bread of Life." Every time a man gathers in his grain, Christ says, "The harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels."

1. The rainbow stands for the varied glories of God. Its seven colors seem to say God is the One, perfect in the beauty and glory of His character and countenance.

2. The rainbow reaching from Heaven to the earth, seems to say that God is above, and He reaches unto earth in His benefactions and blessings. It seems also to say, I encompass you in the arms of My love: My mercies reach from the East to the West, and from the North to the South.

3. The rainbow is thrown over against the cloud as much as to say, My grace and glory will be found in the midst of all the sorrows and shades of earth's life. In the midst of wrath, there is mercy. Your darkness will only be My opportunity to the more "brilliantly" radiate My light.

4. The rainbow is God's great call to men to repent. God seems to be saying, "Look unto Me and live"; "Come under My sheltering wings."

VII. ANOTHER RAINBOW (Revelation 4:3 )

Since the days of Noah God has steadfastly moved on in His march for man's redemption. While man has steadily gone on in his downward and hellward way, God has pressed on in manifold grace seeking to save all who would believe.

What paeans of praise will resound in Glory when the saved are fully awake to all of God's mercies, proffered to all men, but accepted only by some! God's grace magnifies the heinousness of man's sin; and man's sin magnifies the glory of God's saving grace.

The 4th and 5th chapters of Revelation describe God's throne, once more preparing for judgment. God, Himself, is seated upon the throne. Lightnings, thunders, and voices are proceeding out of the throne. God is about to arise and shake terribly the earth. Jacob's trouble, the Great Tribulation, the day of God's Indignation, has come. What do we see in the center of that judgment throne? "And there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald,"

1. That rainbow seems to be saying, "I have not forgotten My covenant to Noah, and his seed." The Noachic rainbow is yet before God His covenant stands a flood shall not come, neither shall God utterly destroy man from off the face of the earth.

2. That rainbow seems to say, "I am now sending wrath and judgment, only that mercy and grace may the more abound. The rainbow in Revelation is emerald green. It speaks of summer, of growth, of verdure, of renewed life, of the passing of winter with its dearth and barrenness.

Noah's rainbow, the rainbow which has been God's covenant to Noah's seed unto this day, will not pass, but will be, the rather, re-enforced by the rainbow that is round about the throne, a rainbow of greater promise than the rainbow of the clouds.

AN ILLUSTRATION

MENDELSSOHN AT THE ORGAN

When God plays upon the harp-strings joy and peace abound.

"Once Mendelssohn was in the great cathedral in Fribourg, where was the greatest organ on the continent, and he felt a desire to touch the grand instrument. So he went up to the old man in charge of the place, and begged that he might be allowed to play on it 'No,' said the old man, 'this is a valuable instrument, and no stranger is ever allowed to touch it.' 'But,' said Mendelssohn, 'I will not harm it, and you may stand here and see that I do no damage.' The old man at last yielded, and Mendelssohn mounted the organ-bench, and began to let his fingers wander at will over the manuals, and his feet over the pedals. The great organ pealed forth such melodies and harmonies that the old man. was entranced, and exclaimed, 'Well, who are you?' 'My name is Mendelssohn,' was the reply. 'And yet,' said the old man, as he burst into tears: 'I had almost forbidden Mendelssohn, the great master of music, to touch this organ!' What discords would be hushed; what disharmonies would end; what music would fill our lives, if we only allowed the hands of a greater than Mendelssohn to play evermore upon the notes! No one but the Master can hush the discords, and make our lives one glad, continuous Hallelujah Chorus! Shall we not let Him?"

 


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Neighbour, Robert E. "Wells of Living Water Commentary on Genesis 9:4". "Living Water". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/lwc/genesis-9.html.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, October 20th, 2019
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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