The Ark-A Type Of The Church

The Ark-A Type Of The Church

Enoch and Noah are the first two preachers mentioned in the Bible, and they both walked with God. Would to God that every preacher since then had done the same.

God told Noah to build the ark and Noah immediately began to build it. He did not ask God who was going to pay for the ark. If he had asked God that, God would have told him, "You have to pay for it yourself of course."

Have you ever heard God tell you that you must pay for the expenses of His work from your own pocket? Most Christians feel that if they do God's work, someone else must pay them for that! But Noah didn't think like that. He supported himself and his family, and served the Lord. He had to put in extra hours of work to earn the money needed to build the ark; but he did that gladly. God needs men like that today too. If, as Jesus said, the last days are going to be evil like in Noah's time, then God must be needing many Noahs in the last days too - men who, like the apostle Paul, support themselves, when needed, and serve the Lord.

People must have asked Noah how the animals would come into the ark. Noah knew that that was God's business and not his. And God brought the animals inside supernaturally. Noah only did what he was supposed to do - build the ark. He left all other matters with God. We too have to do only what God has told us to do. We can leave all the impossibilities with God.

Finally, we read that God shut the door (Gen.7:16). It was God who shut the door of the ark, not Noah. God will also shut the door of salvation one day when the time is up for entering God's kingdom.

The ark is a picture of Christ and of His Body, the Church.

I'm not alone in this imagery. Early Fathers of the Church such as Origen, Tertullian, Cyprian, Augustine and others would agree.

It must have been inconvenient living inside the ark, just like it can be in the Church! In the Church, we have to mingle with people who are different from us, and many of them may rub us the wrong way at times. But even if the ark was not convenient, it was the only safe place on earth at that time. So is the Church today. I am happy to be in the Church, even if there are difficult people in it.

When the flood was finally about to subside, Noah sent a crow and a dove out of the ark - a picture of the flesh and the Spirit. The crow never came back. The crow found the dead bodies of men and animals and was delighted at the feast that all that provided for it. Similarly, those who live according to the dictates of their flesh find the world a very enjoyable place. But the dove came back very quickly. And that is how it is with those who live according to the Spirit. They never feel at home in the world and always long to come back to the fellowship of God's people in the Church.

After Noah came out of the ark, the first thing he did was to build an altar to the Lord on which he offered a sacrifice of thanksgiving (Genesis 8:20). That example of putting God first and offering Him our worship and thanksgiving is a good example for us to follow at all times.

 

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