Blog, Sermon

Noah’s Altar (Genesis 8:20-22)

Over the past few weeks we have learned about Noah and the flood. In Genesis 6, God saw that the world was corrupt because of the wickedness of man. God decided to destroy the earth with a flood. Before the flood came, however, Noah found favor with God because he was a righteous man. God decided to spare Noah, Noah’s family, and a selection of animals on a large boat called an ark.

After the flood waters receded, Noah and all who were on the ark departed into the new world. While many people are aware that Noah built an ark, not as many people know that Noah built an altar once he left the ark. What can we learn about Noah’s altar? Consider, that it is:

  1. An Altar of Adoration. The first thing Noah did when he left the ark was to build an altar to worship God. Noah worshipped God in an act of faith because Noah was convinced that the Lord alone is God. Noah built this altar because he loved God and desired to worship Him. Noah knew the power of God, the holiness of God, and the grace of God and knew He was worthy. Noah’s altar is an altar in which he adores God.
  2. An Altar of Confession. The very act of Noah putting the clean animals on the altar indicates that Noah is believing in faith that God will continue to forgive his sins in the new world. Even though he was spared from the flood, Noah understood that he is still in need of forgiveness. Noah built this altar because he felt remorse for his sins and the sin of the world. Noah understood that only God can forgive sin and also understood that sin is
  3. An Altar of Thanksgiving. Noah built this altar because of his thankfulness to God. Noah knew that he and his family were only alive by the grace of God. Noah understood that if he got only what he deserved, he would have perished along with everyone else. Noah entered into the new world with an attitude of gratitude. Noah knew that all he had was God and he gave thanks for God’s faithfulness to keep His covenant promises. An attitude of thankfulness is very important because God will use it to keep bitterness and resentment away.
  4. An Altar of Supplication. Supplication means to bring your requests to God. Noah built this altar because he knew he needed God’s help and blessing in the new world. God’s response in verses 21-22 are in response to Noah’s requests. Noah is trusting that God is going to continue to provide for him and his family and in faith he is asking God to provide. Faith produces dependence in God. Supplication has two important aspects: 1) Petitions for one’s own needs and 2) Intercession for the needs of others.

Noah is a man of faith that we can look to and imitate. When we see someone like Noah living by faith, we should all take notice. We should see faith in action and ask God if that faith is also in me. We should go to God in prayer and worship Him, confess our sins to Him, thank Him, and bring our requests to Him.