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Gospel Gazette Online

Vol. 11 No. 11 November 2009

Page 5

Priscilla's Page Editor's Note

Mrs. Noah, A Stedfast Helpmeet

Bonnie Rushmore

Character Study

Genesis 6:18
God created a perfect world. Unfortunately, His children chose to listen to Satan. God surveyed the world and was heartbroken with the behavior of His people. “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). The perfect world transformed into total wickedness in approximately 2,000 years. God regretted (human terminology accommodating communication with mankind despite the Omniscient, changeless nature of God) creating the world and determined to destroy all living things upon the earth. However, Noah found favor in God’s eyes because he lived a righteous life. Although not stated in the Scriptures, Mrs. Noah lived a righteous life as well. We know this because Genesis 6:18 says, “But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee.” God would not permit any unrighteous individual to enter the ark. Noah and all his family members were righteous.

Genesis 7:7-13

Noah built the ark while he preached to the wicked people. The ark was a barge 450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet tall with one window and one door. The inside of the ark was divided into three floors. God told Noah to gather food for his family and for all the animals to eat while on the ark (Genesis 6:15-22). Finally, one hundred twenty years later, God told Noah to gather the animals. Of the clean animals he was to gather seven sets (male and female), and of the unclean a male and a female. Noah, his wife, his three sons and his sons’ wives as well as the animals entered the ark. God closed the door, and seven days later the rain began to fall upon the earth. It rained for forty days and forty nights. Noah, Mrs. Noah, Shem, Ham, Japtheth and their wives lived on the ark for one year. Imagine living on a boat with all those animals for one year. For one year Noah and his family tended to the feeding and cleaning up after the animals. For one year eight precious souls lived together on a boat the length of one and half football fields.

Genesis 8:16-22

A year has passed. The waters have receded from the face of the earth. God told Noah, “Go forth of the ark, thou, and thy wife, and thy sons, and thy sons’ wives with thee” (Genesis 8:16). Noah, his family and all the animals left the ark. The first thing Noah and his family did was build an altar to worship the God of their salvation. Eight souls were saved from the destruction of the whole earth. Everybody and everything that breathed through nostrils on dry land perished in the flood except those safely aboard the ark (Genesis 7:21-23; 1 Peter 3:20).
Applicable Principles
Eve is the mother of all (Genesis 3:20). After God created Adam and Eve the rest of humanity arrived through procreation. Thus, all humanity came into existence through Eve. Sarah is considered the “mother of nations” (Genesis 17:16). Mrs. Noah could be considered the “mother of the new, post-flood world” since through her the world was populated after God destroyed it with the great flood. What characteristics would such a woman need to fulfill such an important role in God’s scheme for man? Listed below are a few.

Mrs. Noah Believed in the One God of the Universe

Contrary to popular belief, there is only one God. Many world religions believe in multiple gods and think that the God of the Bible is just another one of those gods. Paul faced this attitude in Athens when he observed the idol to the unknown god (Acts 17:22-27). Paul explained to the Athenians that their “unknown god” was indeed the God to whom they should direct their worship. There is “One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all” (Ephesians 4:6). Paul taught the Corinthians that there is one God by whom all things are made (1 Corinthians 8:6). Jesus taught about “…the only true God…” in John 17:3. Mrs. Noah knew this God — the God Paul, Jesus and others taught about in Scripture. When God said He would destroy the earth with a flood, Mrs. Noah knew He would destroy it. When God said He would keep those on the ark safe during the flood, she knew He would keep His promise.

Do you have the knowledge and understanding of the one true God that Mrs. Noah had? Do you believe that God keeps all His promises? Do you comprehend that God has the power to punish the disobedient and to reward the obedient?

Mrs. Noah had Great Faith
Only a deep faith in God would permit an individual to leave friends and possessions to board a floating zoo, knowing that everything and everyone familiar would be destroyed. That faith was built upon the knowledge of the God of creation. Hebrews Chapter 11 is called the Bible’s Hall of Fame, listing many Old Testament characters who exhibited great faith in God. Noah is one of those named individuals, and by association, Mrs. Noah would be included as well. Hebrews 11:1 gives a biblical definition of the word faith. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” “Faith accepts the truths revealed on the testimony of God…” (Fausset’s) and is not based on what we can see. “True faith is confidence in God or Christ, not in oneself” (Nelson’s). This is the faith portrayed in the actions of Mrs. Noah. She trusted that God would keep His promise, keeping them safe on the boat while the earth was destroyed by the flood.

The word “faith” is used twice in the Old Testament in relation to God, and all New Testament usage of the word “faith” refers to God or Jesus Christ. Faith in God is a part of our salvation (Romans 10:17). Studying the Scriptures will strengthen our faith (2 Timothy 2:15). A strong faith will furnish one with the tools needed to resist the daily trials and temptations of this life and bring us closer to God (1 Peter 1:7-9).

Do you have the faith of Mrs. Noah? Do you trust in God? Could your name be listed in the Bible’s Hall of Fame alongside Noah (Mrs. Noah) and the others?

Mrs. Noah was a Helpmeet to her Husband

God created a perfect world in the beginning. After Adam named all the animals, a helpmeet was not found for him (Genesis 2:20). God created a special companion for Adam from one of Adam’s ribs. God planned from the beginning that man should have a counterpart or mate to help him along the way.

Mrs. Noah was a helpmeet to Noah. She may have assisted him in building the ark. She may have helped gather the food stored on the ark. She may have helped tend the animals for the year they lived on the ark. We do not know all the things that Mrs. Noah did with and for her husband. However, we can know that she was a good wife, fulfilling her role as Mrs. Noah. If she had failed to be a good wife, she would have been an unrighteous individual and prohibited from entering the ark. Mrs. Noah was a good wife centuries ago. What makes a good wife in the 21st century?

A good wife is submissive to her husband (Ephesians 5:22). She willingly and lovingly is obedient and subject to her husband just as all Christians should be submitting to each other (Ephesians 5:21) and as the church as a whole is subject to Christ (Ephesians 5:24). Titus 2:5 states that women should be “obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.” When women fail to be submissive to their husbands, they literally defame or speak evil of God (Biblesoft’s).

A good wife is a helper to her husband. A good wife will “hold up her husband’s arms” as Aaron and Hur held up the arms of Moses during the battle with Amalek (Exodus 17:8-16). She encourages him in his daily walk as a Christian. She supports him in his righteous decisions, even when those decisions conflict with the world around them.

Are you a good wife? Do you willingly submit to your husband and others who have authority over you? Or, do you only submit with grumbling and a bad attitude because you know what the Scriptures teach on the subject? Do you support your husband in the decisions he makes, even when those decisions may cause a conflict with friends and loved ones?

Mrs. Noah Refrained from Participating in the Evil Around Her

“Every thought and imagination of man was evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). What a wicked, difficult world in which to live! It seems as though that phrase could describe the world in which we live today. One can hardly turn on the television without being bombarded with foul language (even from newscasters), degrees of nudity (advertisements as well as shows), sexual innuendos, immoral behavior, children showing disrespect to parents, etc. Radio broadcasts blast the same foul language and innuendos. Rarely, can one walk down the street or the aisle of a store without hearing foul language and seeing immodestly dressed individuals and pictures. Keeping pure thoughts in the current world can be a challenge for the young and the old alike. The Noah family remained righteous during those challenging times in which they lived (500 years before the ark), and we must remain righteous in the challenging times we face, too.

Adam and Eve sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves with aprons when they realized they were naked (Genesis 3:7). The garment Adam and Eve made covered the waist and resembled a loincloth or girdle. Adam acknowledged to God that they were naked (Genesis 3:10) even though they were wearing the aprons. God made coats of skin to cloth Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21). The clothing God provided covered more than the loincloth of leaves that Adam and Eve made. God properly dressed Adam and Eve and that “dress code” would have been passed down through the generations to come.

We do not know whether the people changed to inappropriate dress during the time preceding the flood. We do know that every thought and imagination of the people was evil continually (Genesis 6:5). It is possible, that Mrs. Noah was faced with some of the similar dilemmas Christians face today with regard to proper, modest dress. If the world in which Mrs. Noah lived and raised her family dressed immodestly and improperly, she would have followed God’s design for proper attire. Short skirts, short shorts, low-cut tops, midriff tops that allow exposure of the stomach and tight fitting clothes on men and women do not fit the covering God provided for Adam and Eve. Because Mrs. Noah was righteous in her dress she was welcomed into the ark of safety, and we must be righteous in our dress in order to have the hope of salvation one day.

Mrs. Noah refrained from using the foul language that would have been prevalent around her. Likewise, we must carefully guard the words we speak so as not to repeat the foul language surrounding us. “But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth” (Colossians 3:8). Filthy communication is vile, shameful speech (Strong’s). Unfortunately, many have lost all sense of shamefulness. We are blasted from all sides with filthy language to the extent that it has become common and not shameful to our ears. Filthy language and evil speaking cannot coexist with kind words and a forgiving heart (Ephesians 4:29-32). The use of crude, vulgar words are linked in Scripture with other sins such as fornication, idolatry and covetousness, and such words will keep one from heaven (Ephesians 5:1-5).

It has been said, “What goes in the ear, comes out the mouth.” We must guard our ears from the filthy language about us. That may require turning off the television set, turning off the radio and carefully choosing where and when we do our shopping to avoid the evil speaking.

Are you a Mrs. Noah? Do you carefully choose your clothing so as to be dressed modestly and appropriately in public? Do you avoid the use of foul language? Do you lovingly remind your co-workers and friends that you do not want to hear that type of joke or those disrespectful words?

Mrs. Noah Taught her Sons to Love God and to Choose Godly Wives
Shem, Ham and Jepheth were righteous individuals, and they married women who were obedient to God. These young men were taught by their parents the importance of following God. Mrs. Noah understood the principle behind Deuteronomy 6:6-7 long before God told Moses, “And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” We must be like Mrs. Noah. We must use every moment of the day to teach our children about God and His commands.

Sitting in a chair with an open Bible is not the only way to teach. Daily activities and interaction with others creates opportunities to talk about God and His will. The marvelous, natural world around us offers many occasions to discuss God’s power in creation and the impossibility of evolution. We can teach about kindness, sharing and caring as our children interact with others. Remember, our actions speak louder than words. Our behavior toward others will teach our children how to treat others. We may be teaching good qualities or we may be teaching an ungodly behavior. If you want your children to be kind, loving children you must be a kind, loving adult. It is equally important to teach our children to choose godly spouses. We must stress to our children from the earliest age to seek good, Christian mates with whom to spend the rest of their lives. Our children should marry persons who will help them attain the heavenly reward, not pull them away from the one, true God of the Bible.

Are you a Mrs. Noah? Do you teach your children about God throughout the day, or is their only knowledge of God received in the two to three hours of Bible class  and worship each week? Do you help your children choose godly playmates and future spouses?

Be a Mrs. Noah! Believe in the one, true God, have faith that God will keep his promises, teach that faith to your children and be a godly helpmeet to your husband.

Works Cited

Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Seattle: Biblesoft and International Bible Translators, 1994.

Fausset’s Bible Dictionary. CD-ROM. Seattle: Biblesoft, 1998.

Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary. CD-ROM. Nashville: Nelson, 1986.

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