Posts Tagged ‘Noah’

The recent movie Noah got some things exactly right

August 14, 2014

In preparation for my sermon on Noah last Sunday, I watched the movie Noah, which came out last spring. Given that the movie was over two hours long, and it only covers a few chapters in the Bible, the filmmakers had to take some liberties with the story.

For example, Noah believes that God is calling him to rescue only non-human creatures for the world after the flood. Therefore Noah isn’t interested in his sons taking wives aboard the ark. (Shem has a wife, but Noah mistakenly believes she’s barren.) From Noah’s perspective, his family would be sinning if they propagated the species after the flood. Why would God want to save human beings, he reasons, given that they were the creatures who messed everything up?

It’s understandable that Noah would be confused in this way. After all, God doesn’t say that he wants to save human beings until after Noah offers the sacrifice at the end of Genesis 8, in v. 21, when God says, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth.”

This verse doesn’t say what we expect, by the way. We expect it to say, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, despite the fact that the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth.” Instead God says it’s because the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth. Strange—except it expresses the truth that if God is going to continue to work with us human beings, he’s going to have to put up with our sinfulness. Or do something to solve our problem with sin.

Speaking of which, in the following scene, Noah’s wife tries to talk him out of the decision against taking wives for his sons. “There’s good in us,” she tells him. And she’s right. But Noah’s response is also correct: as good as he and his family are, they’re also sinners.

As I said in my sermon:

And make no mistake, the movie got it exactly right: Noah didn’t earn his place on that Ark, either. We know this because of verse 8: “Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” This word for “favor”—it’s exactly the same as saying, “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” “Noah found mercy… pardon for sinsforgiveness in the eyes of the Lord.” No matter how righteous a person Noah was, he wasn’t righteous enough to pay for the grace that bought his ticket on board that ark. It was a free, completely undeserved gift.

Audio drama from a sci-fi record: Noah’s Ark

August 11, 2014
space_199901

The cover of a 1976 children’s record based on the British sci-fi TV show.

When I was a child in the ’70s, I used to collect a series of children’s records from Peter Pan Records (on its Power Records subsidiary). These records included audio adventures licensed from Marvel and DC Comics, Star Trek, Planet of the Apes, Six Million Dollar Man, and this relatively obscure British TV show, Space: 1999, which aired in syndication in the mid-’70s. Naturally, since I watched far too much TV, I also watched this show. (Even though, as a six-year-old, I could hardly follow the show’s sophisticated story lines.)

space_199902Still, as I was preparing my sermon on Noah last week, I thought of this particular record. The crew from Moonbase Alpha time-traveled through a black hole (yeah, right!) to the time of Noah. They arrive just in time to hear Noah, “that bearded old man haranguing the crowd over there,” warning his neighbors about the impending flood.

Somehow they escape the flood and travel back to the future, to their present time in 2002. They speculate about what just happened to them. I have to smile when I hear one of the crew members suggest that they were victims of a “mass hallucination.” A mass hallucination would imply that they were all experiencing the same hallucination at the same time, which is, of course, impossible.

I only point this out because some skeptics believe that a mass hallucination accounts for the disciples’ experience of the resurrected Jesus.

space_199903

Be that as it may, I love collecting records, I love old-time radio drama, and I love the ’70s, so this sort of thing is right up my alley. I hope you enjoy it too!

Click on the playhead below or right-click on this link to download.