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Below are the notes that I made in preparation for last Sunday’s message. The setting for the service for MacAlpine Presbyterian Church was at the Gazebo in Como Park in Cheektowaga. You will have to listen to the audio for much more, including at least one observation that only dawned on me while I was preaching. For those who usually read these rather than listen let me also say that some of the notes below will make a lot more sense if you listen to the sermon.

I love preaching outside but today’s sermon is going to feel more like a Bible Study. I want you to discover some things with me as we reflect on this theme of a new creation. Go ahead and turn to Genesis 6 with me and I think that even if you don’t have a Bible in hand you can still turn in your mind to the story of creation in Genesis 1 and the flood that spans Genesis 6 to 9. But before we look at these passages I want to do two things. First, let me say that the adjective “new” might be somewhat misleading. “New” emphasizes the discontinuity between what came before and what comes after. We might remember the saying, “out with the old and in with the new.” Thus we have this sense that what is new is different and completely replaces what is old. However, the Hebrew and Greek words translated as “new” actually carry the sense of “renewed.” The English language has no adjective with the sense of renewed – we only have the adjective “new.” The point that I’m trying to make here is that while there is discontinuity between the old creation and the new creation there is also a lot of continuity – a lot that stays the same – between the old creation and the new creation. It is a new creation because creation is renewed. So if I may be allowed to pretend that renewed is an adjective – the point I’m making is that it is a renewed creation. The second thing I want to do is to state the main thesis that I intend to prove as we reflect on God’s word today. I would imagine that this thesis will not be a surprise to most of you because it fits what we have explored together on other Sundays. But I also imagine that you may be somewhat surprised as we see what it means more fully. The thesis is this: By faith we inherit a renewed creation where there is no more sin and death. But let’s get started…

Genesis 6:5-8

Verse 8 is a statement of God’s grace – Noah was saved by grace alone. You do not need to go looking in verse 9 and the story that follows for reasons that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. The only reason that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord was that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. This is the conclusion of the second section of Genesis.

The third section of Genesis begins at verse 9 with the title, “These are the generations of Noah.” Verse 9 adds: “Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.” This language of walking with God is the language of faith. When Scripture says that he was a righteous man and blameless in his generation, it does not mean that he was sinless. Rather it means that he was righteous by faith. For example, Noah offered animal sacrifices for his sins and the sins of those in his household with faith in the true God. As the author of Hebrews says in the New Testament, “Without faith it is impossible to please Him” (Hebrews 11:6). Hebrews interprets Genesis 6 this way: “By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith” (Heb 11:7). It was faith in the true God that set Noah apart from the rest of humanity. Genesis says, “Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight (cf. Gen 6:11), and the earth was filled with violence….and God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh…I will destroy them with the earth.” So Noah, like us, was saved by grace alone through faith alone on Judgment Day – the day of the Lord.

Now the climax of this story is in Genesis 8:1-3a. We read that the waters prevailed on the earth 150 days and then Genesis 8:1ff says, “But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind blow over the earth, and the waters subsided. The fountains of the deep and the windows of the heavens were closed, the rain from the heavens was restrained, and the waters receded from the earth continually.” Then the second half of Genesis 8:3 says, “At the end of 150 days the waters had abated.” God remembered Noah – remembered is resurrection language. The waters of the sea were the waters of chaos and death. Thus for the waters to recede was to resurrect Noah from the dead, figuratively speaking. The flood was a baptism and Jesus would say of his death and resurrection – “I have a baptism to be baptized with,” (Luke 12:50). When God remembered Noah, it meant new life for Noah. It also meant new creation.

Recall Genesis 1 – it began with the waters covering everything and then the waters parted and what part of the land would you see first? The mountaintops! Then you have a dove that brings back a freshly plucked olive leaf – the earth brought forth vegetation!

But read on down through Genesis 8 and 9 and tell me what are the other signs of new creation:

Genesis 1:22 and for birds Genesis 8:17 – God blesses the animals and tells them to be fruitful and multiply on the earth

Genesis 1:28b and Genesis 9:1-2 – man is blessed and is to rule over the creation

Genesis 1:29 and 9:3 – man is told he can eat

Genesis 1:28 and 9:7 – man is told to be fruitful and multiply

Adam and Noah both have three sons

The Lord planted a garden for Adam (2:8) and Noah planted a vineyard (9:20)

So Noah is a new Adam over a new creation

But what stayed the same from the old world to the new creation that is a problem?

Death – “the wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23)

The Lord said in his heart, ‘I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth.’” (Genesis 8:21). Noah repeated the fall of Adam and then the end of this section of Genesis says, “All the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died” (Genesis 9:29).

As the author of Hebrews would say, Noah “died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar” (Hebrews 11:13). Though praised for his faith, Noah “did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect” (Hebrews 11:39-40). Jesus victory over sin and death!

Matthew 24:36-41

Who is taken and who is left?

Matthew 5:5

Renewed creation – but this time no sin and death

2 Corinthians 5:17

no “he is” – the Greek simply says, “if anyone is in Christ—new creation; the old THINGS…”the new THINGS.” We live in a strange time – when the new creation has already begun but still in the old age

Below are the notes that I made in preparation for last Sunday’s message. The setting for the service for MacAlpine Presbyterian Church was at the Gazebo in Como Park in Cheektowaga. You will have to listen to the audio for much more, including at least one observation that only dawned on me while I was preaching. For those who usually read these rather than listen let me also say that some of the notes below will make a lot more sense if you listen to the sermon.

I love preaching outside but today’s sermon is going to feel more like a Bible Study. I want you to discover some things with me as we reflect on this theme of a new creation. Go ahead and turn to Genesis 6 with me and I think that even if you don’t have a Bible in hand you can still turn in your mind to the story of creation in Genesis 1 and the flood that spans Genesis 6 to 9. But before we look at these passages I want to do two things. First, let me say that the adjective “new” might be somewhat misleading. “New” emphasizes the discontinuity between what came before and what comes after. We might remember the saying, “out with the old and in with the new.” Thus we have this sense that what is new is different and completely replaces what is old. However, the Hebrew and Greek words translated as “new” actually carry the sense of “renewed.” The English language has no adjective with the sense of renewed – we only have the adjective “new.” The point that I’m trying to make here is that while there is discontinuity between the old creation and the new creation there is also a lot of continuity – a lot that stays the same – between the old creation and the new creation. It is a new creation because creation is renewed. So if I may be allowed to pretend that renewed is an adjective – the point I’m making is that it is a renewed creation. The second thing I want to do is to state the main thesis that I intend to prove as we reflect on God’s word today. I would imagine that this thesis will not be a surprise to most of you because it fits what we have explored together on other Sundays. But I also imagine that you may be somewhat surprised as we see what it means more fully. The thesis is this: By faith we inherit a renewed creation where there is no more sin and death. But let’s get started…

Genesis 6:5-8

Verse 8 is a statement of God’s grace – Noah was saved by grace alone. You do not need to go looking in verse 9 and the story that follows for reasons that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. The only reason that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord was that Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. This is the conclusion of the second section of Genesis.

The third section of Genesis begins at verse 9 with the title, “These are the generations of Noah.” Verse 9 adds: “Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.” This language of walking with God is the language of faith. When Scripture says that he was a righteous man and blameless in his generation, it does not mean that he was sinless. Rather it means that he was righteous by faith. For example, Noah offered animal sacrifices for his sins and the sins of those in his household with faith in the true God. As the author of Hebrews says in the New Testament, “Without faith it is impossible to please Him” (Hebrews 11:6). Hebrews interprets Genesis 6 this way: “By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith” (Heb 11:7). It was faith in the true God that set Noah apart from the rest of humanity. Genesis says, “Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight (cf. Gen 6:11), and the earth was filled with violence….and God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh…I will destroy them with the earth.” So Noah, like us, was saved by grace alone through faith alone on Judgment Day – the day of the Lord.

Now the climax of this story is in Genesis 8:1-3a. We read that the waters prevailed on the earth 150 days and then Genesis 8:1ff says, “But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind blow over the earth, and the waters subsided. The fountains of the deep and the windows of the heavens were closed, the rain from the heavens was restrained, and the waters receded from the earth continually.” Then the second half of Genesis 8:3 says, “At the end of 150 days the waters had abated.” God remembered Noah – remembered is resurrection language. The waters of the sea were the waters of chaos and death. Thus for the waters to recede was to resurrect Noah from the dead, figuratively speaking. The flood was a baptism and Jesus would say of his death and resurrection – “I have a baptism to be baptized with,” (Luke 12:50). When God remembered Noah, it meant new life for Noah. It also meant new creation.

Recall Genesis 1 – it began with the waters covering everything and then the waters parted and what part of the land would you see first? The mountaintops! Then you have a dove that brings back a freshly plucked olive leaf – the earth brought forth vegetation!

But read on down through Genesis 8 and 9 and tell me what are the other signs of new creation:

Genesis 1:22 and for birds Genesis 8:17 – God blesses the animals and tells them to be fruitful and multiply on the earth

Genesis 1:28b and Genesis 9:1-2 – man is blessed and is to rule over the creation

Genesis 1:29 and 9:3 – man is told he can eat

Genesis 1:28 and 9:7 – man is told to be fruitful and multiply

Adam and Noah both have three sons

The Lord planted a garden for Adam (2:8) and Noah planted a vineyard (9:20)

So Noah is a new Adam over a new creation

But what stayed the same from the old world to the new creation that is a problem?

Death – “the wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23)

The Lord said in his heart, ‘I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth.’” (Genesis 8:21). Noah repeated the fall of Adam and then the end of this section of Genesis says, “All the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died” (Genesis 9:29).

As the author of Hebrews would say, Noah “died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar” (Hebrews 11:13). Though praised for his faith, Noah “did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect” (Hebrews 11:39-40). Jesus victory over sin and death!

Matthew 24:36-41

Who is taken and who is left?

Matthew 5:5

Renewed creation – but this time no sin and death

2 Corinthians 5:17

no “he is” – the Greek simply says, “if anyone is in Christ—new creation; the old THINGS…”the new THINGS.” We live in a strange time – when the new creation has already begun but still in the old age