“By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear; prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.”
Hebrews 11:7, NKJV
We live in an extremely work-conscious, work-oriented society. It seems as though the inevitable question that follows a name introduction is, “What do you do?” We derive our identity from our work. Our work says something about our gifts, interests, and our contribution to society. At the same time, we have seen that God is not nearly as concerned about our work as He is about our faith.
Real faith is evidenced in work. Although faith allows us to see the invisible, when faith is present, it is very visible. Genuine faith grips the heart, enlightens the mind, and motivates the feet into action. James said, “Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” Noah’s faith moved him to build an ark as an expression of his belief in God’s Word.
The faith of Noah was not a dead faith but a living, motivating, and working faith. So great was the power of faith in the life of Noah that he invested his time, he influenced his family, and he constructed an ark with his own resources, yet by God’s design, in order that by faith he might please God.
Noah knew that all of the works of this life would fade and fail, but the work of faith bears the fruit of righteousness and enjoys the blessings of God. Noah risked his reputation and his resources so that, by faith, his work should please God.
“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.”
– Jim Elliot
QUESTION: What are examples of works you have seen substituted for a living faith? What is the “fruit” reflective of true faith in your relationship with Christ? Examine James 2 in light of the “works” of Noah and consider how faith “works” in your life.