Sunday School Lesson
Recognizing God's Reliability
Change. How do we react to it? Resisting change is a natural response.
Recipe for failure: Unwillingness or inability to adjust to change.
Encourage sharing of real experiences. Times when changing circumstances left you feeling insecure, or threatened, or doubtful of God's control.
Israel's history illustrates God's constant love and desire to deal with the basic needs of His people as they faced centuries of change.
God is the constant when all else in life is changing. He provides resources for coping with the stress of change.
Now share times when you knew that God led you through a particular situation. A time that it was clear that He was in control.
This was Noah's situation. He knew God was in control of things. Although some of his family members may have been doubtful, insecure, or threatened.
Symbols (Pictures) in the story (in Genesis 7, 8, 9),
1. God's faithfulness and reliability
a. He kept His promise concerning Noah and the flood. He has kept His promise concerning not having world-wide flood. We can believe that every promise will be kept.
b. He was there all the time (Genesis 7:1; 8:15, 16; Hebrews 13:5).
c. The world around us is in constant change. But God's character and purpose never changes (See Hebrews 13:8).
2. Noah's critical decision of obedience (Genesis 7:1, 16; 8:15, 16, 18). He did exactly as God commanded. And did nothing until God commanded.
3. The Ark - symbol of Salvation and Eternal Security. Notice 7:1 (KJV), "The Lord said, 'Come thou...into the ark'." If the ark had sank, God Himself would have sank with it. Notice a parallel verse in Matthew 11:28, Jesus said, "Come unto me." (Also see John 14:23, "abode"). Then in Genesis 7:16, "The Lord shut him in." God has sealed our salvation unto the day of redemption (See Ephesians 4:30).
4. Another decision: Noah responded to his deliverance with gratitude and worship (See Genesis 8:20).Praise is the only appropriate response for someone who has experienced God's power and presence in his or her life. One of the hallmarks of a true servant of the Lord is that he has an attitude of reverence and devotion.
5. God's love, mercy, righteousness, and grace. God despises sin. He cannot look with favor or approval upon sin. Sin brings its consequences (See Romans 6:23). Spiritual death. But the underlying thought in the story of the flood is that of God's grace and mercy. Because of His love and grace, spiritual destruction and death can be avoided. Because of His mercy and Noah's faithfulness, Noah and his family were delivered. Because of God's grace and our faithfulness to trust Him as Lord and savior, we too will be delivered from spiritual destruction and death.
6. A New Start. A New Beginning. A New Life. A New Heaven.