In message 33 of the Life-Study of Genesis we continue with the shadow of the church life in Genesis 8-9, yet covering a matter on the negative side – the failure of Noah, God’s deputy authority. After the flood, Noah certainly was under God’s blessing, being the leader on the new land and the father of all mankind on the earth. The Bible also records that at that time Noah became a farmer and planted a vineyard, from which he drank wine and became drunk. In doing so, Noah did not exercise self-control but was loose and careless and became naked without realizing it. “This shows us that we all must be careful whenever we experience success under God’s blessing, for that success can easily cause us to be loose and careless.” When we are loose and careless it is possible for us to become naked, that is, to lose our covering in the eyes of God. As fallen human beings we need both the physical and spiritual covering. By our nature we sense that the more we are covered physically, the more peace we have. Therefore, we must cover our bodies. We also need the spiritual covering – who is Christ (Luke 15:22) – even more. When talking about a success or certain exciting things, or even spiritual things, we must be careful not to become overly excited and thus lose our covering of Christ. “We must keep ourselves covered by Christ in every kind of activity, in everything that we do or say.”
As God’s deputy authority, Noah represented God and His government. Therefore, after his failure Noah did not confess and humble himself but rather stood for God’s government and cursed Ham who exposed his failure. “To expose a leader’s failure is to be involved with the divine government. We all must see this.” Noah’s failure was a test to his sons and Ham received the curse because he exposed his father’s failure and neglected God’s government. Shem and Japheth on the other hand respected and were under God’s government and by covering their father’s nakedness they received the blessing. “The failure of the leader always becomes a test to us. Are we truly under God’s government? If we are, we shall be blessed. If not, we shall lose the blessing.”
In message 34 we see that the situation among Noah’s family after the flood was one of unity. They were one with God, having one goal, and were one in their opinion, language, concept, and understanding. They were one because they worshipped the one God and because they had one goal – to express God and represent Him. However, as the population on the earth increased, division came in because Noah’s descendants began to worship different things and have different goals. They were divided according to families (relationships in the flesh), languages (concepts), lands (territories), and nations. “As long as we all worship one God and believe in the one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who was incarnated to be our Savior, who died on the cross for our sins by shedding His blood for our redemption, who was resurrected on the third day, and who is now the Lord in the heavens as well as life within us, we should all be one and not be divided by anything.”
Then in message 35 we come to see a life in resurrection being a shadow of the kingdom. After man’s fall in the garden of Eden until the time of the flood, man was ruled by his conscience. This situation resulted in the earth being filled with violence. Therefore, after the flood God established His deputy authority to rule over man. Genesis 9:6 says, “Whoever sheds man’s blood, By man shall his blood be shed.” This verse implies the kingdom and indicates that God has given man authority over other men. “The ruling with God-given authority among men on the new earth signifies the reigning of God’s kingdom in resurrection life.” And in the New Testament we see that the church is the kingdom and the kingdom is the reality of the church. In Matthew 16:18 the Lord Jesus said, “I will build My church.” Then in verse 19 He tells Peter, “I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of the heavens.” The Lord uses the words “church” and “kingdom” interchangeably, indicating that they refer to the same thing. Furthermore, Romans 14:17 says, “The kingdom of God is…righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” This verse indicates that the church life today is the kingdom. The church with the reality of the kingdom today will eventually bring in the manifestation of the kingdom in the coming age. For this the overcomers are needed. “The church produces the overcomers, and the overcomers defeat the enemy and usher in the manifestation of the kingdom.” Praise the Lord! May the Lord make us those who are under the heavenly ruling, reigning in our spirit in resurrection that we may have the reality of the kingdom among us!
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