Noah is one of those interesting Bible characters that is getting some attention these days with an upcoming movie release. Everyone seems to have some kind of interpretation as to what kind of man he was; and most of what I have seen is anything but Biblical. It seems Hollywood isn’t satisfied with taking the story as it is presented to us in Scripture and making what would be a very exciting movie about it. They change the story to “spice it up,” actually ruining it for us.
Bill Cosby also has a very funny routine retelling the story according to his very limited understanding. Applying his own understanding of humanity, he ends up picturing Noah as some sort of jokester who ends up counseling God as to how the earth should be destroyed; and when he realizes that the job that God has given him is too big for him, he attempts to bail out until the thunder starts to roll and the rain begins to pour.
The Bible pictures a totally different kind of person. The Bible says that “Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD” (Genesis 6:8). It says that he “was a righteous man, blameless in his generations;” and that he “walked with God” (Genesis 6:9). Cosby and the movie trailers seem to picture God breaking into a man’s life who was just living his life, minding his own business. The Bible, on the other hand, shows us a man who had a relationship with God. He walked with Him. Hebrews 11:7 tells us that Noah was “moved with godly fear,” and that what he did he accomplished “by faith.”
What we actually have is a godly man, a righteous man, one who knew God. It wasn’t out of the ordinary for God to speak to him. What was out of the ordinary was what God told him to do; but because of his “godly fear,” he responded in obedience, and his household was saved from the flood that resulted from God’s judgment of the violence that had overtaken the whole of the human population.
Noah responded to God’s instructions in faith through his obedience to what God instructed him to do. Our faith is demonstrated in the same way. What is God asking of me? What is God telling us to do? Are we willing to go against the tide of our culture and “moved by godly fear,” accomplish “all that God commanded,” just as Noah did (Genesis 6:22; 7:5)?