Sadly, it didn’t take long for Noah’s descendants to not follow in his footsteps and go their own way. Unlike Noah, Nimrod and the people in the cities he founded choose not to follow God. Nimrod was known as a great hunter, ruler, and builder. He was described as someone who had ambition, strength, and courage. Yet over time, his ambition turned to greed, his strength turned to ruthlessness, and his courage to pride. He is credited with building many powerful ancient cities like Babylon and Nineveh, cities that eventually became enemies of Israel. Unlike his grandfather, Nimrod did not live a righteous life.
Despite our heritage, we each have to make our own choice if we want to follow God and live our lives in obedience to Him or not. Sadly, Nimrod chose not to. Here again, we see God’s compassion. Just like God told the wicked generation of Noah’s day that if they didn’t turn back to Him, He would have to destroy the earth.
Years later God gave a similar warning of destruction through Jonah. In the past, God gave the people of Noah’s day 120 years to repent and give Noah time to build the ark. We can see from both events God is compassionate and longs for people to turn from their wicked ways and back to Him. But He will not force us, we have free will and we must choose for ourselves.
Much to Jonah’s disappointment, the people in Nineveh responded just as he had hoped they wouldn’t, with remorse and repentance. Jonah, knowing God’s character, knew He would choose to extend compassion instead of judgment.
We learn two important truths about the character of God from these passages. One, that a godly lineage does not necessarily guarantee a godly line in the future. Each person has to make the personal decision to follow God for themselves. Second, God desires repentance over judgment. Again and again, throughout the Old Testament, we see God extending opportunities of repentance before judgment is finally delivered and the door to the ark is shut or a great city is turned to rubble.
We are in that same window of grace right now but there will come a day again when the window of grace is closed, opportunities of repentance will have reached their end, and judgment will come.
Years later God did judge the city of Nineveh, but not in Jonah’s time. At the time, God used Jonah to delay His judgment and extend compassion.
Like the Ninevites, now is the time to respond to God’s compassion and accept His free gift of salvation. It’s not too late but you must make that decision for yourself. Your spiritual heritage cannot dictate it for you. Like Nimrod, you must make that personal decision for yourself no matter who your ancestors were. Heritage does not dictate salvation. Only we can make that choice for ourselves. What type of legacy do you want to leave behind? One that points others to God like Noah or from Him like Nimrod?
Love God Greatly,
Week 6 Challenge:
Read Psalm 139 this week. Meditate and reflect on God’s full knowledge of you. He knows you inside and out and still loves you. Spend time this week reflecting on this truth. Ask Him to show you His peace as you rest in the truth that He knows you fully and completely and loves you perfectly!
Week 6 Reading Plan
Week 6 Memory Verse
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