A New Day
Good morning and welcome back!
I thought that this morning we would be returning to our Journey Through Matthew, but the Lord has different plans for us this morning.
So, next week, Lord willing, we will be returning to our series, but for this morning I’d like for you to start turning in your Bibles to .
This morning, being New Year’s Eve we are actually going to be looking at the subject of A New Day.
Now, I’m not going to be asking you to make a bunch of New Year’s Resolutions that none of us will keep anyway.
There’s no need in us all lying today.
No, today’s purpose is to get us to look at the newness in each and every day that we have.
When you start spending time in hospitals, doctors offices, nursing homes, and funeral homes, you start to realize what a blessing it is just to have another day that you are able to get up and go where you want and do what you want.
In fact, reminds us that . . .
24 This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
And it is the second part of that verse that we sometimes have a hard time remembering.
We know that God has made all things and has made every single day, but we often forget to rejoice and be glad in it.
And lots of times it is because the day is not what we expect it to be.
Either we are sick or someone we love is sick, or things have just not gone the way we thought they should.
But the simple fact that God is in control and that God understands and knows what we are going through is enough to cause us to rejoice.
We can have confidence in knowing that if we are God’s child, God is with us.
God will deliver us, either from the trouble or through the trouble.
We don’t know how but we do know that God is there.
We also know that . . .
5 For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favour lasts a lifetime; weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.
A New Day will always come.
Whether that day is here or over there, it will come.
And we should rejoice in that fact.
And this morning, I’d like us to take a closer look at Noah and his New Day.
So, if you have found in your Bible, I’d invite you to stand with me as I read the first five verses of the chapter.
Again, that is . . .
1 But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded. 2 Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed, and the rain had stopped falling from the sky. 3 The water receded steadily from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the water had gone down, 4 and on the seventeenth day of the seventh month the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. 5 The waters continued to recede until the tenth month, and on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains became visible.
God Remembered Noah
God Remembered Noah
Now the very first thing I want us to pay attention to in this passage is the very first four words of . . .
But God remembered Noah . . .
I believe that this is very, very, important for us to understand and grasp.
We have to remember what was going on here.
The entire surface of the earth was covered by water.
Absolutely no dry land anywhere.
Other than the animals and Noah’s family that were on the Ark, there were also no people.
Everything and everybody else was dead and gone.
And Noah was not a young man at this point either.
In fact in we learn that . . .
6 Noah was six hundred years old when the floodwaters came on the earth.
So he was no spring chicken when all of this was taking place.
And after all of this, here Noah and his family is, floating in this big old boat full of stinking animals and where is God?
Because this wasn’t just a flash flood that happened overnight and it was over.
The Bible tells us that . . .
17 For forty days the flood kept coming on the earth, and as the waters increased they lifted the ark high above the earth. 18 The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. 19 They rose greatly on the earth, and all the high mountains under the entire heavens were covered. 20 The waters rose and covered the mountains to a depth of more than twenty feet.21 Every living thing that moved on the earth perished—birds, livestock, wild animals, all the creatures that swarm over the earth, and all mankind. 22 Everything on dry land that had the breath of life in its nostrils died. 23 Every living thing on the face of the earth was wiped out; men and animals and the creatures that move along the ground and the birds of the air were wiped from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those with him in the ark. 24 The waters flooded the earth for a hundred and fifty days.
So, not only did it rain for more than a month, Noah witnessed the death and destruction of everything and everybody that was not on the ark, this flood lasted for 150 days, or about 5 months.
For 5 months, Noah saw nothing but death and destruction.
And not only that but he couldn’t even get off the Ark because he couldn’t open the door.
16 The animals going in were male and female of every living thing, as God had commanded Noah. Then the Lord shut him in.
Notice it says that the Lord shut him in.
The Lord was on the only one who could also let him out.
So here we was stuck for 5 months.
I know everyone has different experiences with their family visiting for the holidays, how would you like to be stuck in a boat with them for 5 months?
So, naturally after all this time Noah probably began to wonder a bit about where God was at and why God hadn’t come back yet.
Why the flood waters were still there and what in the world God was doing in general.
And a lot of times we feel the same way don’t we?
It may not be a physical flood, but it seems like all the problems and challenges we face come flooding it at one time doesn’t it?
And we feel like we are just sort of out there on our own, doing our own thing being tossed to and fro by the waves of the ocean we are on.
Even when we are working for God, we sometimes feel like God has put us out here on an ark and shut us in and we are trapped-can’t escape, can’t get away.
God has shut us in and disappeared and we begin to wonder where God is.
And when we begin to wonder, our faith begins to waver a bit, doesn’t it?
So, we can identify with Noah here.
But here is the good news, just like God remember Noah AND all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, God remembers you and me.
Just like God cared for Noah, God also cares for us.
Remember what God told Jeremiah . . .
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
And the same applies to all of God’s creation.
We are created with love, care, and compassion.
Jesus reminds us that . . .
7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
So, when Satan starts to put that seed of doubt in your head and starts to tell you that God is out to lunch, that He is nowhere to be found, remind him of who Your Father is.
God does care and God does know exactly where you are and what you are going through.
And even though today may be a bad day, tomorrow is coming.
A New Day is coming.
Look at the rest of our passage . . . .
A New Day
A New Day
1 But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded. 2 Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed, and the rain had stopped falling from the sky. 3 The water receded steadily from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the water had gone down,
Now, what I want you to notice though is that God didn’t just do everything all at once.
Noah didn’t just wake up one morning and the whole earth was completely restored.
It was a process.
The wind began to blow and the waters began to recede.
The springs stopped flowing.
The floodgates from heaven stooped.
The rain stopped falling.
The Bible says that the water receded steadily but only at the end of 150 days the water had gone down.
And it is the same thing that happens with us as well.
Most of the time our deliverance is not immediate.
Sometimes, many times, it is a process that takes place over time.
I don’t know exactly why God does it this way, but I suspect it is to teach us something.
When we see God working each and every day in our lives, slowing and methodically, it teaches us to put our faith and our trust in God and God alone.
We begin to realize that all of our attempts and solving our own problems don’t cut it, and that God is our only hope and our only deliverance.
Because even though the water stopped flowing after 150 days and the recession began, Noah was still floating out there.
There was a glimmer of hope but. . . .
4 and on the seventeenth day of the seventh month the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. 5 The waters continued to recede until the tenth month, and on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains became visible.
So, it was the middle of the 7th month before the Ark even came to rest and stopped floating around and then another 3 months before the mountaintops could even be seen.
So, we are talking almost a year at this point!
But even at that it wasn’t over . . .
6 After forty days Noah opened the window he had made in the ark 7 and sent out a raven, and it kept flying back and forth until the water had dried up from the earth. 8 Then he sent out a dove to see if the water had receded from the surface of the ground. 9 But the dove could find no place to set its feet because there was water over all the surface of the earth; so it returned to Noah in the ark. He reached out his hand and took the dove and brought it back to himself in the ark. 10 He waited seven more days and again sent out the dove from the ark. 11 When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth. 12 He waited seven more days and sent the dove out again, but this time it did not return to him. 13 By the first day of the first month of Noah’s six hundred and first year, the water had dried up from the earth. Noah then removed the covering from the ark and saw that the surface of the ground was dry. 14 By the twenty-seventh day of the second month the earth was completely dry.
And, it was only after the earth was completely dry that . . .
16 “Come out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and their wives.
And Noah came out but what did he come out to?
An empty planet.
So, even though it was a New Day and God had delivered Noah and his family, the challenge was not over.
Noah and his family had to now re-establish humanity.
1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth.
And what I want us to realize is that even though God does deliver us and even though tomorrow will be a New Day, and even a New Year, we can’t sit back and rest.
Because even though tomorrow is a New Day, tomorrow is also filled with new challenges and new opportunities.
And we have to be prepared for what we are going to face.
And that doesn’t mean we are to worry and fret over tomorrow, that means we are be prepared.
And being prepared means being where we need to be with God.
And that first step is being a child of God, being a Christian.
Just like each day is made new, when we accept Jesus Christ we are also made new.
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
Brand spanking new.
And it is only through this newness in Christ that we can be prepared for what will come tomorrow and the next day and the next.
So, this morning, the first thing is where do you stand with Jesus?
Have you accepted Jesus Christ?
Are you a new creature ready to face the new day?
Or, are you still trying to go it alone?
The reality is, tomorrow is coming, are you ready?
None of us know what we will face tomorrow, but we can know who we will face it with.
Will you face it with Jesus or will you face it alone?
That’s the choice you have this morning before you, what choice will you make?
The alter is open.