Naked Noah

For some reason in the past few weeks there have been
several discussions that I been a part of in which
the conversation included some mention of Hebrews 11.  The
“faith hall-of-fame.”  I’ve been thinking a lot about the people
that are mentioned in the chapter and there are a few things that
strike me that the we in the local church could learn from these
paragons of faith.

Let’s start with Noah.  Great guy!  It had to take a lot
of faith (not to mention some pretty high self-esteem) for Noah to
spend years building a gigantic boat on dry land.  It had to take
a lot of faith to nail yourself into a ship with animals that would
rather eat you than ride the rapids with you.  So there is no
doubt in my mind that Noah shows up in Hebrews 11 for a reson. 
But do you remember what one of the first things he did when he got off
the Love Boat?  He got drunk…and got naked!  Now there’s
part of the story that isn’t in my son’s picture Bible!

Then there’s guys like Jacob.  Israel.  The guy that the
whole nation of God is named after.  His story started off
bad.  He was a pasty little fellow that was constantly abused by
his hairy brother and pushed around by his overbearing mother. 
But he got his in the end, didn’t he.  Not that he was supposed to
get it.  He STOLE the blessing from his brother!  What
faith???

Then Moses is mentioned!  You remember Moses, don’t you? 
The guy that met God in the burning bush!  Now just for a minute
think about it.  You see a bush that is burning but does not burn
up.  Then you hear a voice coming from the bush that says “I am
God!”  The bush then tells you to do something and what’s your
response?  For me personally, if a bush (an inanimate object that
doesn’t typically talk) tells me to do something more than likely I’m
going to do it.  But not Moses.  He ARGUES!

Here’s my question…is it just me or does it seem like we’ve
sanitized the Story?  I mean we read chapters like Hebrews 11 and
talk about faith…and we should.  But when do we talk about the
gritty side of the spiritual life?  We spend most of our time in
church teaching “Don’t do wrong…do right.”  But isn’t there more
to the Story than that?  Weren’t there days when Matthew showed up
for duty after a celebration feast the night before with a pretty stiff
hangover?  Weren’t there times when Paul and Barnabas almost came
to blows?  When Peter talked about John, wasn’t there at least a
hint of jealousy in his voice?

I think we need to expand our view a little.  The faith walk is
not just the times of spiritual conquest.  Days when the truth
wins out over lies, purity wins out over lust, KLOVE or
AFR wins out over the latest Eminem song, Republican wins out over
Democrat (had to put that one in for an election year).  I think
that the reson most people avoid the modern version of Christianity is
because it is too binding, too restrictive, too BORING.  I really
don’t think think that’s the movement that Jesus started.  He
didn’t come with more rules (thall shalt not do this or this or
this or this…) he came to redeem those that stepped out of line, that
marched to the beat of a different drummer, that didn’t believe in
status quo faith.  He came to make those kinds of people into
hall-of-famers!  I think we need to include this gritty side of
faith in our telling of the Story…in fact, I think that’s the
point of The Story. 

Enjoy the Journey!

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~ by Chris Green on July 27, 2004.

One Response to “Naked Noah”

  1. I love this perspective. Faith is a way of life for all of us but somehow we have painted an unrealistic, unatainable view of the folks in the Bible. They were all perfect. Not so! And we neglect to see that in scripture. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could let our selves see the whole picture and realize that they were folks just like us and God used them for His good. What an encouragement for a brother/sister in a time of weekness (sin) to give hope that their life is still in God’s plan. Maybe we can use it too to be more encouraging and offer more hope to those who have gone astray. Even “sinning” can be used when God is in the picture.

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