What does believing in something invisible or impossible really look like? If you can’t see it or envision what it could be, how does “believing in it” actually demonstrate itself in your life?
From time to time I like to “enliven” my son’s understanding of history by throwing in what I call “false facts,” to spice up the lessons. While I get a chuckle out of it, I’ve learned that it can be a bit of a problem for my son if I don’t make the line between make-believe and reality very clear. Case in point was the time my son announced that after Captain Cook sailed the Pacific Ocean, he took his fortune and invested in the business endeavors of his brother, one “Captain Crunch,” thus helping him to become one of the greatest cereal moguls of all time. The point is that my son actually believed my fable and was so confident in it, he repeated it and shared it with others. His belief translated into action.
When we talk about trusting God, we can often come up against the same challenge. How does a man actually show that his “belief” has real bearing on the whole of his life, not merely his mind? The powerful life of Noah gives us the answer that shows a belief, or faith, that goes beyond mental agreement, displaying itself in every arena of life. Noah’s belief in God’s word to Him poured out of his life into confident action.
When we find Noah in the Bible, just a few chapters into Genesis, we discover the comprehensive wickedness of the entire world. Everyone, everywhere, was corrupt. And then God speaks. The word of God declares a promise and a command for Noah to believe and obey (Genesis 6:11–18). How do we know that Noah really believes this word from God is true? It’s written all over his life. Trust in God shows itself in obedient action.
“Rain will come and flood the earth, so build an ark with these specific blueprints.” Noah does it.
“Go into the ark, you and your entire household, and all the animals I have commanded.” Noah does it.
“Go out from the ark with all the animals and your entire family.” Noah does it.
The repetitive cycle is here shows us what faith really looks like. Belief is more than just mental agreement with a statement. True faith displays itself in the follow-through of obedience.
The contrast between Noah and the people of his day is staggering. Where the world raged in chaos and disobedience against the Lord, Noah stood firm with his trust in God. It was said that “Noah was a righteous man, blameless among his contemporaries; Noah walked with God” (Genesis 6:9).
The story of Noah shows us what a man of faith in action really looks like. It’s worth asking ourselves, What does faith in action look like in my life? How can I demonstrate my trust in God?
Noah walked with God. May it be so with us.
Written by Jeremy Writebol