I. THE LIFE
Let us now look into the life that changed the age. What kind of life was it? I have such a heavy burden about this. I fear and tremble that I may fail God in His revelation. I am not trying to give you a good sermon. I want to discharge my burden upon you, passing on the burden that the Lord has given me. How we need to see the kind of life that God can use to change the age!
A. Inheriting the Godly Ways of the Fathers
This life always inherits the godly ways of the forefathers. Thank God that Noah, the tenth generation from Adam, had many good forefathers. Enoch was the seventh generation, Methuselah the eighth, Lamech the ninth, and Noah the tenth. All of Noah’s nine forefathers from Adam to Lamech were godly men. Although Genesis gives us a record of man’s fall, that is only a background showing us the true picture of the godly ways.
1. Adam’s Way of Salvation
Noah inherited Adam’s way of salvation (3:20-21). In Adam, we see the way of salvation. Although Adam had fallen, he was given the way of God’s salvation. If you had never fallen, you would never be able to taste the sweetness of God’s salvation. Since we have been fallen and saved, we can testify of the sweet taste of God’s salvation. Let us come with joy to draw water out of the wells of God’s salvation (Isa. 12:3). Adam was the pioneer in drawing water out of the wells of God’s salvation. He was so joyful that he called his wife’s name "Living" (3:20—"Eve" means "living"). Do you not think that he was joyful when he called her "Living"? I am quite sure that he joyfully drew water out of the wells of salvation. I have no doubt that Noah inherited this way of salvation.
2. Abel’s Way of Offering
Noah also inherited Abel’s way of offering (4:4). Adam’s way was the way to get himself saved, but Abel’s was the way to please God by offering gifts to Him (Heb. 11:4). Can you imagine that a fallen man could please God? Abel was a fallen man who pleased Him. His way of pleasing God was that of offering the type of Christ to God. I can please God in the same way. Although I am a fallen man with a fallen nature, I can please God by offering Christ to Him as a gift. I am not boasting, but I can declare to you that I have pleased God very much in these recent days. I know that God has been pleased with me. Even this morning and this afternoon I was happy because my God was pleased. My God was happy, and I was happy too. What is the way to please God? It is the way of Abel, which is to offer Christ to God, not only as the sacrifice for our sins, but also as a gift for pleasing God. Whenever you give a person a gift, he will be happy. Likewise, whenever we bring Christ to God, He is very happy with our gift. God is pleased with Christ. Noah surely adopted Abel’s way.
(Life-Study of Genesis, Chapter 29, by Witness Lee)