The Noahic Covenant

28 March 2021 PM – Genesis 9 – Gen2021 – Scott Childs
Introduction: After the flood, the world was new in many ways. The geography of the world was all new with new mountains, new oceans, new icecaps, new rivers, new canyons and a new climate.
In Genesis 9, God tells us of other things that were new after the flood, including a new covenant from God to man and every living creature.
Transition: As we look at God’s new covenant, we find several things that affect our lives today.
  1. The Preface to the Covenant
The preface of God’s covenant gives man four pieces of important information.
a.         A command to multiply
1)         God blessed Noah and his sons.
2)         God gave them a three-in-one command. Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.
a)         Be fruitful – bear fruit. Have children.
b)         Multiply – have LOTS of children. Increase in number.
c)         Replenish the earth – fill the earth. The word does not imply fill again as the English word seems to mean. Having children is not a curse but a blessing. (Psalms 127:3) “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.
b.         A comment about the animals
1)         Evidently, before the flood, animals, birds and fish had no fear of man. They were friendly and obedient to man.
2)         Now, animals, birds and fish will fear and be terrified of man’s presence.
3)         Even domestic animals share this fear if left in the wild. [Illustrate]
c.          A change in diet
1)         Before the flood, people were vegetarians.
2)         Now, for the first time (at least with God permission), man is allowed to eat the living creatures (v.3).
3)         God placed just one restriction on the eating of meat; the blood must be drained from it before eating it (v.4).
4)         Later, during the Law, God forbid the Jews to eat certain kinds of meat. Now in the New Testament period, God allows us to eat all kinds of meat. It is interesting that health experts often say that the kinds of meat God forbid in the OT are still not very healthy for us today.
5)         “Finally, the fact that humans could eat animals emphasized the gap between humanity and the animal kingdom-only humankind has been made in the image and likeness of God.” https://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/don_stewart/don_stewart_745.cfm
d.         A capital punishment is instituted
1)         If an animal killed a man, that animal must be killed.
2)         If a person kills another person, the murderer must be put to death.
a)         The context is obviously wilful murder.
b)         The context does not forbid self-defence.
c)         The context obviously does not condemn the person executing the murderer.
d)         The Old Testament context also does not forbid killing in warfare. Military defence is important for the protection of our nation and our liberties.
3)         Capital punishment defends the sanctity of human life.
  • In this preface, God has given us four pieces of information about changes in the post-flood world. These changes are still in effect today.
2.        The Promise of the Covenant
a.         It was a divine promise
1)         God made this promise (v.8). It came from God’s lips.
2)         When God makes a promise, we can be sure that He will keep His promise. The character of God assures us of God’s truthfulness, but so does His Word. (Numbers 23:19) “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
b.         It was a universal promise
1)         God made this promise to Noah, his sons, and with their seed after them (v.8-9).
2)         God also made this promise to every living creature that was in the ark (v.10).
3)         God repeated the universality of his promises. See v.13, 15.
4)         Because God made this covenant with all humans and every living creature on earth, it is truly a universal promise.
c.          It was an unconditional promise
1)         “The Noahic Covenant is an unconditional covenant because it does not depend upon anything Noah or his descendants had to do to fulfill the covenant. The promise is based upon God’s faithfulness alone.” https://www.gotquestions.org/Noahic-covenant.html
2)         God simply stated, “I will” (v.11).
3)         God promised that He would never again use floodwaters to destroy all flesh on the earth (v.11).
4)         The very fact that God makes such a promise indicates that He, not a freak event in nature, caused the global flood.
5)         This promise is similar to the words God spoke back in Genesis 8:21-22. A key phrase to highlight is “While the earth remaineth” (8:22). One day, God will destroy all flesh, but that is when He will destroy this earth with heat (2Pe 3:10).
d.         It was an everlasting promise
1)         God actually calls it “the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth” (v.16).
2)         This promise is good as long as the earth remaineth (8:22).
3.        The Prompt of the Covenant
a.         The rainbow is timely
1)         Evidently, rainbows were new after the flood. Before the flood it had never rained.
2)         When do we see rainbows? We see them when it is raining and the sun is shining at the same time. Rainbows are always connected with water.
3)         God chose this beautiful arch and sometimes a double beautiful arch in the sky as a reminder that He would never again flood the whole world as He did in Noah’s day. Rainbows ought also to remind us that God hates sin and will one day judge the world with fire (2Pe 3:10).
b.         The rainbow is God’s prompt to us
1)         Every time you see a rainbow in the sky, it should prompt us to remember that God will be true to His promise. The rainbow is a vibrant reminder of God’s faithfulness.
2)         The colours of the rainbow are Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo and Violet. God forms them in a huge beautiful arch in the sky for our viewing.
3)         God made the rainbow beautiful to resemble the beautiful rainbow around God’s throne. (Revelation 4:3) “And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.
4)         Though unbelievers have corrupted the beauty of God’s rainbow of colours by making them a symbol of homosexuality, they cannot corrupt God’s rainbow beauty in the sky nor the promise of God’s faithfulness.
5)         Today, we would mar our testimony for Christ by wearing or displaying rainbow colours, but in honour to God let us utter a word a praise and thanksgiving to God every time we see a rainbow in the sky.
Conclusion: When you see a rainbow in the sky, let it be a reminder to you of the changes that followed the global flood in Noah’s day. Babies are blessings. Animals now fear man. We can eat meat. Murders are to lose their lives. Rainbows remind of God’s love and faithfulness. They resemble God’s beautiful throne. When you remember these things, take time to thank God. Worship the Lord. Guard your heart so that the world does not spoil the true meaning of God’s amazing rainbow.
Song: How Great Thou Art! 37