Summer Devotional and Sermon Series
Week 4/Heroes: Noah
I am not a carpenter nor have I ever attempted to make anything from wood. I know the difference between a hammer and a screwdriver, and a nail and a screw… but beyond that I am lost. My dad liked to build things and I remember watching him measure and saw and nail things together… things like bookshelves or a blanket chest for me or a playhouse for my sisters and me. It was important to measure the wood to make sure it would all fit together properly.
I may not know how to work with wood but I do know the value of following instructions. Sewing is something I enjoy doing and when I start a project, it is important to read the directions and cut along the pattern lines. If I don’t follow the instructions, the blouse I am attempting to make is certainly not going to look like the one on the pattern envelope and will most definitely not fit properly. The written instructions included with the paper pattern are meant to be followed to the letter.
In our passage for today, God gave Noah very specific instructions as to how to build the ark. It was to be made of cypress wood and the dimensions were to be 450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet high.To the shipbuilders of that time, that was a BIG boat! The dimensions were exactly what God knew they needed to be in order to hold all the animals and Noah’s family. No cutting corners or it would not serve its intended purpose.
I work for a construction company and we do not build anything without very specific printed or digital plans. Noah did not have written blueprints to follow. All he had were God’s spoken instructions, but he chose to obey and began building the massive boat. There is the key… he chose to obey and that meant cutting the wood to just the right length and constructing it according to God’s words. Noah’s obedience was a direct result from, and evidence of, his close walk with God.
Noah may not have had written blueprints to follow, but we are fortunate that God has left us with specific written instructions as to how to “build” our lives. His Word specifically tells us what a life of repentance looks like and how it should impact believers. In his obedience, Noah showed his family and the whole, defiant world that he took his relationship with God seriously. His actions showed them that he didn’t just believe in word, but also in deed.
James told us to “prove ourselves doers of the word and not just hearers” (James 1:22). Noah was a doer … and sadly, too often today, we’re just hearers.