Read: Genesis 6:5-8
When I was little, I remember telling my parents that I was done with my homework, when, in reality, I hadn’t finished at all. Sometimes I felt sorry for lying to them. Sometimes I just felt sorry that I’d been caught. We’ve all done something we regret. Hands down, it is basically an impossibility for anyone to say that there is nothing in their life they don’t regret. There’s a difference between coming to acceptance of “what’s done is done” then moving on vs. being aware that you probably shouldn’t have done something in the first place. This next passage we will look at says something quite unusual. It says that God “regretted” that He made human beings. However, if we look at it in another translation, it says that God was “sorry” that He made us. It wasn’t God regretting what He had done, but more, He was sorrowful and grieved at what was going on in the world.
In Genesis 6:5-6 it says, “The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord regretted that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him to His heart.”
Notice the phrase: “only evil all the time” (v. 5). God has so much grace and hope for us. The fact that He saw into their hearts and only saw evil says something. God knew this time would come, it’s not like this came as a surprise to Him.
The sin and rebellion of His creation didn’t affect Him lightly, just like it shouldn’t affect us lightly, either. We should be paying close attention to the state of the world before the flood, because as the end of days approaches, we will see a striking resemblance. As it says in Matthew 24:37, “For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.”
Again, this doesn’t mean we should lose hope. God always makes a way out of this evil and darkness. The very last verse in today’s reading speaks of this hope. There was a man named Noah who would continue God’s promise and help bring a redeemer. Verse 8 says, “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” In the midst of all this mess, God saw one person who was following Him. That is a challenge for us today. As God looks at all the world and all of its problems, He can see you!
The world is full of sin, and evil continues today. In fact, this sinfulness will again get to the point of the days before the flood. But just like there was a way of redemption then, there will be redemption in the day that will come. Romans 5:20 says, “But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more.”
God has such great plans for us, and we are constantly failing Him. Let’s be thankful that we don’t just have a God who is just but also gives unending grace. Let us also remember that we did nothing to deserve grace, but that it is a gift.