Saturday, May 05, 2007

Humanity in Sin Part 10 – The Flood Aftermath, Sin of Drunkenness and A Parent’s Curse

This is my personal summary of the preaching of Rev.Dr.Stephen Tong on 22nd April 2007 in GRIIS. It was preached in Indonesian and I personally translated to English. Newton Life has it preached in Mandarin with English translation.

Passage: Genesis 8:20-22, 9:1-17,20-29

Note that for this particular sermon, I was not present to listen to it personally. This transcript is my translation of selected part of the Indonesian transcript handed out to the congregation each week, which contains the transcript of previous week's sermon.

After the water had dried from the earth, Noah and his family came out of the ark. Noah immediately offered sacrifice of thanksgiving to God. Because Noah’s offering pleased God, God decided never to destroy the world by flood anymore. And all through history until today, we no longer see such flood destroying the world because God kept His promise. Do not think that the thanksgiving and praises of believers are not important. In fact, they become channels of blessings to the world.

Here in Gen.8:21 there is a phrase, “God said in His heart.” Since God said this in His heart, how could Noah know then? This is a secret known only to very few people who know God’s heart. They are the people who hold the key to lead people to understand where the history is heading towards.
Often times we do not pay attention to little things written in the Scripture, they seem small but actually contain general principle of the Scripture, in which is hidden the supreme wisdom of God. If God’s heart has been revealed to a minority, these people will function like priests between the holy God and sinful men. We thank God that Noah walked with God for many hundred years, although he was not without weakness.

In the Scripture, we see God did filtering many times and this is very scary. God cannot be mocked and ridiculed because He is the Most High God. God has His standard which cannot be compromised and His purpose which cannot be thwarted. Sometimes God still tolerates sinful men, but only until a certain limit, where He will come in His judgment to do another filtering. In reformed theology, it is God who elects based on His sovereignty, not men’s freewill. God’s elecion is based on His wisdom, sovereignty and infinite perfection that is from eternity to eternity. That is why the chosen people should fear when contemplating on unconditional election. We are chosen not because we earn it or qualify for it. We are chosen solely because of grace, solely because of His willingness.

Building the ark took such a long time, but it was only used for a short time. This shows that what is important is not the ark, but the people. This is the same as the church, what is important is the people. Church buildings can be bombed and demolished. When Jesus Christ comes again, He is taking His people away with Him, not the church buildings.

After the flood was over, God blessed Noah and his sons, to be fruitful and multiply. This principle is against population control. There are 3 ways a church can grow, i.e. by migration, by evangelism, and by reproduction. The descendents of Noah’s 3 sons, Shem, Ham and Japheth would later be scattered all over the world. According to anthropology, however we divide, human race eventually only consists of three basic races, i.e. the Mongoloid, Negroid and Caucasoid. Indonesians came from the Mongoloid. Indians belong to the dark-skinned group of the Caucasoid. Africans are from the Negroid group. So the 3 sons of Noah were our ancestors. Three of them also came from one family. No one family has kids with exactly the same skin color. A little bit of difference could result in huge differences in the next generations due to other elements.

Human blood type have four categories: A, B, AB and O. What could be the blood type of Adam and Eve then? In the study of heredity, if a person with blood type A marries with a person with blood type B, after the 4th generation, those 4 types of blood would result. Hence in medical study, it is not a difficulty to believe that human race originates from one pair of parents.

After God judged the wicked and preserved only Noah and his family, history of men’s wickedness kept repeating. After a few hundred years, the descendents of God’s worshippers began to forget God, and later on God would bring forth His judgment again to wipe out the wicked from the earth. In all these events of history, there is a red thread running through, heading towards the omega point. This is the holy history of salvation, this is the heart of God. To please God, the church cannot follow the world. The true church will see this red thread which runs through the whole history of mankind to discern God’s will. True history can only be understood from God’s intervention in the world, to reveal, to illuminate and to lead us to eternity according to His promises.

Noah loved God fervently but he had his own weakness. One day, he drank too much, lost his sobriety and exposed his nakedness. Do not presume that you can always control your own emotions and keep your secrets. Once you are drunk, you may expose yourself like Noah and lost people’s respect. Noah was a prophet who was used mightily by God and who walked with God for many hundred years, but he left a regrettable scar in his life.

When Noah was naked, Ham saw it and exposed it to his brothers Shem and Japheth. But Shem and Japheth decided not to even look at it, instead they took a cloth, walked backwards and covered their father’s body, which should always be respected, but had become a shame because of drunkenness. In Gen.9:25-29, Ham was cursed later on. It says, “Cursed be Canaan! The lowest of slaves will he be to his brothers.” And it was also said, “Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem! May Canaan be the slave of Shem. May God extend the territory of Japheth; may Japheth live in the tents of Shem, and may Canaan be his slave.”

These verses were misinterpreted for a few hundred years. Ham was the ancestor of the Negroid. Shem was the ancestor of Mongoloid, while Japheth was the ancestor of the Caucasoid. When Christianity dominated Europe, people made use of these verses to justify colonialism. France invaded Africa. Britain invaded Saudi Arabia. Dutch invaded Indonesia. Germany, Portugal, Spain and Italy sought for places to colonize as well, where they could obtain slaves to serve them. They considered this the fulfilment of the prophecy that Japheth would enlarge his territory. Hence the whites should colonize and expand their territory. God allowed colonialism and colonialism had been prophesied by Noah and recorded in the Scripture long time ago. Shem would dwell in his tent and God would be with him. That means God is with the Jews, the descendants of Shem. The Jews represent the Mongoloid, the whole descendants of Shem, where religion would emerge. Hence Asia produced religion while Europe became the continent that developed colonialism. Ham and his son Canaan, were the people who would become slaves. Hence the slavery of the blacks in America seemed to be sanctioned by the Scripture. It looks right but this shows that the Bible has been misused. When men use the Bible to fit their personal agenda we do not have to agree. One important principle we need to understand here is that it is a fact that whoever dishonor his parents would be cursed.

If our parents have cursed us, it would be hard to run away from God’s judgement. Sometimes we receive support from people who have no relation with us and sometimes we face their enmity. Humans frequently make use of others for their personal gain. However, do not forget this. If a person who never raised you up, who never fund you, educate and grow you, if he curses you, accuses or slanders you, you do not need to be afraid. All my life I have had many people insulting, cursing and trying to trap me, and I am never afraid. However I will be afraid if my mother curses me. God uses our mothers to give us birth. Do not dishonor them just because they are less educated than us. If they have weaknesses, we need to pray for them. Do not grieve your parents who gave you birth and raise you up, for God uses them to be your parents. No matter what you need to respect them. The Scripture never begins with saying that parents should love children and then children should respect them. The order is always the reverse. The Scripture first says that we have to honor our parents, and then commands parents to love the children. The Scripture first command the wives to obey their husbands, before commnding the husbands to love the wives. This is the order of the Scripture which should not be reversed.

God made man the head of the household. God made parents to give birth to their children. All these are very clear in the Scriptures. If young people do not understand this, their entire life will not go well. God will raise your kids to be even more disrespectful than you are towards your own parents. When parents are angry and curse their children, it is hard to escape from the hands of God.

God allowed Noah to curse his son and allowed all these things to happen, not to support colonialism, but the account is recorded for our learning and instruction through all ages.


At 3:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"All my life I have had many people insulting, cursing and trying to trap me, and I am never afraid. However I will be afraid if my mother curses me. God uses our mothers to give us birth."

The "I" refer to Rev.Tong, right ?
Young people shouldn't have that many enemies yet.

At 4:12 PM, Blogger Mejlina Tjoa said...

Yup, it's Rev.Tong.

At 12:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We should be afraid if mother/father curses us.

But what about those who have spiritual authority upon us ? Like Elders, pastors, mentors ?

How could we settle fierce disagreements then? If other party has power to curse us?

At 11:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Mejlina,
Please add RSS feed to your blog.



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