When you read the story of Noah, what do you see in the flood waters?
Noah passed through the waters of judgment and found salvation in the promises of God. God’s covenant promises to Noah were ultimately fulfilled in Christ and were for Noah and his household; Biblical faith is family faith. The Apostle Peter tells us that the flood waters typified (or symbolized, or corresponded) to water baptism; not salvation through a mere external ceremony or outward cleansing (cf. Romans 2:28-29), but water as a means of the Spirit’s working salvation in Christ that transforms us from within:
ESV 1 Peter 3:20-22: “…Because they formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water. 21 Baptism, which corresponds (anti-type) to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.
When you see the flood waters, think of baptism (1 Peter 3:20-22). The baptism waters symbolize the judgment of Jesus Christ our Covenant Head and representative who was baptized into God’s judgment and wrath so that we might be His Holy children. Jesus as our Covenant Head (greater than Noah!) underwent the wrath of God on the cross which was a fulfillment of what the flood waters symbolized. As our Lord went to the cross, he cried:
ESV Luke 12:50 I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how great is my distress until it is accomplished!
Here are the truths you can be confident in today because of Jesus Christ:
1) Like Noah, you’ve been saved from God’s wrath and judgment by believing the promises of God in Christ.
2) As Noah was separated apart from the wicked and condemned world by the flood, so have you been set apart because of God’s covenant promises in Christ. You have been separated apart to be holy and to shine like the firmament in a corrupt and perverse generation (Phil. 2:15).
3) As Noah, you and your household are privileged to God’s covenant promises in Christ. These covenant promises and blessings imply covenant responsibilities to believe, and obey and walk with God by faith.
4) Christ’s judgment and condemnation is yours by faith; Christ’s justification-vindication-resurrection is yours by faith (Col. 2:9-12).
5) Like Noah who trusted in Christ (Heb. 11:7), you have been washed, cleansed, and purified by the Spirit of God who “hovers” over the face of the baptismal waters (cf. Gen. 1:2-3; 2 Cor. 4:6; Titus 3:5-7).
6) Now live obediently in light of God’s covenant promises in Christ; covenant privileges imply covenant responsibilities, especially if you are a head of your household like Noah was- -make the Gospel known!. Live in this world and conduct yourself like one saved from the judgment waters, the very wrath and condemnation of God. Be merciful, grateful, and daily offer yourself up to God as one who has passed from death to life (John 5:24). As the Apostle Paul teaches us:
Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. – ESV Romans 6:13
Like Noah, has God revealed Himself to you as the Alpha and Omega of your salvation? Has God initiated grace with you through covenant promises in Christ, and has he “shut you in” as he did Noah and his family by closing/sealing the door of the ark during His judgment (Gen. 7:16b- “And the LORD shut him in”)?
If you are in Christ, you have been sealed by the Spirit of God unto the day of redemption (Eph. 1:13-14). All of God’s promises are “yes” and “amen” to you and your family. As Noah before you, live obediently in light of the grace you have been shown and make this grace known to your family.
Has God “shut you in”? Are you united to Christ by faith, and sealed unto the day of redemption? Then nothing can separate you from the love of God in Christ because in Christ, you were baptized into death, and raised to new life. God has given us deep waters as a means of grace to sign and seal his promises to us in Jesus!
ESV Romans 6:3-4: Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.
Now “improve your baptism” this day and until Jesus returns:
Westminster Larger Catechism Q. 167 How is our baptism to be improved by us? A. The needful but much neglected duty of improving our baptism, is to be performed by us all our life long, especially in the time of temptation, and when we are present at the administration of it to others;(1) by serious and thankful consideration of the nature of it, and of the ends for which Christ instituted it, the privileges and benefits conferred and sealed thereby, and our solemn vow made therein;(2) by being humbled for our sinful defilement, our falling short of, and walking contrary to, the grace of baptism, and our engagements;(3) by growing up to assurance of pardon of sin, and of all other blessings sealed to us in that sacrament;(4) by drawing strength from the death and resurrection of Christ, into whom we are baptized, for the mortifying of sin, and quickening of grace;(5) and by endeavoring to live by faith,(6) to have our conversation in holiness and righteousness,(7) as those that have therein given up their names to Christ;(8) and to walk in brotherly love, as being baptized by the same Spirit into one body.(9)
Scripture References: (1)Col. 2:11,12; Rom. 6:4,6,11 (2)Rom. 6:3-5 (3)1 Cor. 1:11-13; Rom. 6:2,3 (4)Rom. 4:11,12; 1 Pet. 3:21 (5)Rom. 6:3-5 (6)Gal. 3:26,27 (7)Rom. 6:22 (8)Acts 2:38 (9)1 Cor. 12:13,25,26,27
IN Christ’s love,
PS I will have more later this week on our WOE study from how we can be Assessed, Aligned and Aim through studying the seven churches of Revelation.