In the last couple of weeks the North and the Midlands have witnessed torrential downpours described as “almost biblical” – presumably a reference to the flood in Noah’s day. It has certainly been awful, with thousands forced to leave their homes, at least one person tragically drowning, and some discovering that their insurance will not cover the damage. It’s hard for those of us who have never experienced such disruption and loss to know what it is like – although many of us will know those in our congregation who were flooded out of their homes a couple of years ago.
I just wonder whether those who describe the floods as “almost biblical” really know the Bible story in Genesis 6-9? At that time it rained solidly for forty days and forty nights, as well as water coming up from below, and the whole of the known earth was flooded so that even the mountains were covered for 150 days (about five months). What is more, that flood was God’s judgment on human wickedness at the time, and only eight people were saved in the ark.
God has promised never to flood the earth again in that way. But that does not mean he will not judge the earth again. Indeed he will: “the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly” (2 Peter 3:7). Thankfully, God has once again provided an ‘ark’, a place of total safety from the judgment he sends, when we shelter in the Lord Jesus who has already suffered the judgment we deserve.
Yours warmly, in Christ,
Chris Hobbs (Senior Minister)