Peace After the Storm

September 04, 2005
Pastor Chris Abernathy
Columbus, Georgia

If you would, turn in your Bibles with me this morning to the book of Genesis. Genesis chapter eight. Genesis chapter eight. When you reach the book of Genesis chapter eight, please stand for the reading of God’s Word. We are going to read verse seven through verse twelve. Genesis chapter eight, verse seven through verse seven through verse twelve. When you have it, signify by saying, “Amen.” Please stand for there reading of God’s Holy Word. In verse seven it says:

7. And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth.

8. Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground;

9. But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark.

10. And he stayed yet other seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark;

11. And the dove came in to him in the evening; and, lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf plucked off: so Noah knew that the waters were abated from off the earth.

12. And he stayed yet other seven days; and sent forth the dove; which returned not again unto him any more.

Let us pray.

Father, we thank You and give You glory for who You are and for what You do. Master, hide Your son behind the cross, that Your people would see and hear You only, and not me. Lord God, I decrease right now, that You would increase. And Lord, let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, oh Lord, my strength and my Redeemer. I thank You for revelation knowledge that shall flow in this house, for I give my head to you, that this is Your head, this is Your heart, this is Your hands, this is Your feet. I am Your instrument, Your vessel, to do with as You please.

I thank You, Lord, that the atmosphere is conducive this morning to the giving of Your Word, and Lord God, that anything that’s not like You is bound and forbidden to operate. We give You glory, we give You honor, and we give You praise. In Jesus Name.

And the people of God said, “Amen.” You may be seated in the house of the Lord.

Most of us have studied the water cycle. It’s called the hydrological system. And what happens in this system is that water circulates from the clouds to the soil, to streams, to rivers, to the ocean. And then it returns again to the clouds. And when that system backs up, it causes a flood. And there’s more water flowing through that system than the system can actually draw off. So when we look at what a flood is, a flood is an imbalance. Things are thrown off. Things are out of proportion. Things are not in line. And it causes things to react.

And when we look at our natural weather system, it is responsible for predicting the weather and warning us of impending danger. Amen, somebody. It is called the Doppler Radar System that warns us of severe weather that’s getting ready to come. It is supposed to be accurate at monitoring what is going on in the atmosphere, so that we would be able to move at a moment’s notice, if we need to move.

But how many of you know and understand that God is in control of the weather? And no matter what system we have or what tool we have in place, can’t nothing stop the power of God. Man is always trying to predict what God is getting ready to do.

Even when we look at the disaster that happened in New Orleans, they had a warning that the hurricane was getting ready to come; however, I’m going to say it again. How many of you know that you can’t stop God? God uses the elements to get His point across. God uses the elements to bring judgment where there is sin. God uses the elements so that if His people was to call by their names (oh, my God), would humble themselves and pray, and seek His face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will He hear from heaven, and He will forgive our sins, and then God, I said God is going to heal our land. Give God praise all over this house today.

A flood is a natural disaster. Do you hear what I’m saying? And God will send forth natural disaster when there’s wickedness in a place. If you remember in Genesis chapter six and verse five, it said:

5. And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

And then it went on to say that it grieved God that He even created man. You see, whenever there is sin in a place, God is going to take care of that sin by wiping out whatever needs to be wiped out.

I know that scientists say that every forty years hurricanes begin to spring up. Every forty years hurricanes begin to happen. But isn’t it amazing where God will strategically allow that hurricane to be? Isn’t it amazing how God will go down to Sodom and Gomorrah, minister, and call . . . Oh, my God. I know somebody understands what I’m talking about today. Because there’s some things that are going on in the earth that need to be dealt with. And God is getting ready to deal with them. Give God praise all over this place.

When God was speaking about the thought and the imagination of man being evil continually, He was noticing that there was an imbalance in the soul of man. The Bible said in Proverbs, I believe it’s 11 and 1, that a false balance is an abomination to the Lord. Why? Because when there’s a false balance, it means that God is no longer first in that place. And what happened in the garden was, God was no longer the first. And God is playing seconds to nobody. Oh, I feel the Anointing of God.

When there’s an imbalance in the soul of man, I can’t follow God. When there’s an imbalance in the soul of man, I can’t really have a relationship with God. Because what happens is, I begin to be my own god. I begin to be self sufficient within myself. I don’t know about you, but I’m leaning on the everlasting arms of God. I don’t want to do it myself. I want God to be in the midst of me.

You see, if you’ve never been to New Orleans, you probably don’t understand what I’m talking about. I’ve walked Bourbon Street. I’ve seen with my own eyes what goes on. I’ve smelled with my own nose the stench of the atmosphere. The only thing about New Orleans is that a lot of people consider it to be a great tourist attraction. But the only tourist attraction is actually Bourbon Street. But the rest of it is an industrialized place. So in one particular key location Satan makes his home, and then he sends out demons all over the city to do his bidding.

We’re talking this morning about the imbalance in man. God told us even this morning that when sin is finished, it bringeth forth what? I can’t hear you. When sin is finished, it bringeth forth death. And this is what happens here in the book of Genesis. Sin had given birth to death.

Whenever God gets tired of something, somebody’s getting ready to die. Oh, it’s a hard and tight word this morning, but you got to hear what I’m saying in this hour. God has winked at evil, but He said, “In this hour I will wink no more. I will not turn around and look the other way. I’m seeing what’s going on in the land.”

Here we have righteousness in the midst, in the midst of this sin. And God is not looking to destroy righteousness. God is looking to save righteousness.

Look at your Bibles, this morning. Look at chapter six, and verse eight. When you have it, say amen.

8. But Noah found . . .

What? Noah found what? I want everybody to say it. Noah found what? The reason you have not been destroyed is because you have found grace. Oh, my God.

It said:

8. But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

The Bible says in Zechariah that the eyes of the Lord go to and fro. God is watching and looking and seeing what’s going on. He’s not looking for the sin all the time, but He’s looking for somebody that’s standing in righteousness. Somebody say, “Righteousness.”

Look at your Bibles. Look at verse nine.

9. These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a (what?) just man and (what?) perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.

10. And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

Let me explain something to you. Just like sin and different spirits pass generationally . . . Because you see, a lot of times if daddy was an alcoholic (do you hear what I’m saying?), a lot of times the son will be an alcoholic. Do you hear? Do you understand? Because it’s a spirit that has traveled generationally. But don’t you know that righteousness can travel generationally? And if I’m righteous, it can save my children that are coming. Oh, my God. You need to hear what I’m saying today. Mama and daddy, you need to walk in righteousness.

Righteousness can extend from generation. That’s why God will have a whole bunch of preachers in one family. Have you ever seen a family that every time you turn around, “This is Reverend So-and-so, and this is Reverend So-and-so. This is Reverend So-and-so.” He’ll put a whole lineage of preachers, because somebody was walking in righteousness. Righteousness. It has the ability to extend past you, to extend past me.

He found grace in the eyes of the Lord, and the righteousness that he walked in kept him from destruction. The righteousness that you walk in is keeping you from being destroyed. And a lot of saints, their children are in sin, and they’re going through certain things, and they should have been destroyed, but because you’re walking in righteousness, God has spared them.

He’s talking to us today, because He sends natural disaster to get our attention, to get our attention.

The Bible said in Genesis seven . . . Go with me. And verse twelve. It said:

12. And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.

In chapter eight and verse two, it says:

2. The fountains also of the deep and the windows of heaven were stopped . . .

God is going to fulfill whatever judgement He has placed. Do you remember when Abraham was down there in Sodom and Gomorrah, and Abraham was looking for God not to destroy the land? He said, you know, “If I find X number of righteous people, God . . .” He said, “Will You save them?” He said, “Yes.” It didn’t matter the number. God said, “Wait a minute. I don’t see any righteousness going on, so I got to do what I’ve got to do. Now, because you are righteous, you need to get out.”

Because you are righteous, you need to get out. You need to learn how to hear from God. Noah heard from God. When you’re walking in righteousness (oh, my God), righteousness will warn you of a coming destruction, and righteousness will tell you to get out while you can get out. But if you stay (oh, my God), it’s because you chose to stay.

That’s why it’s so important to have a relationship with God. That’s why it’s so important to be able to distinguish the voice of God.

Have you ever been in a situation when there was impending danger, and something just was in you . . . It didn’t have to be an audible voice. Something within you said, “You need to get up out of here.”

Even when you was out there in the club . . . Oh, I’m going to bring it home, huh? Even when you were out there in the club, you just sometimes sat there, you felt like something was about to go down and happen. And all of a sudden you grabbed your belongings, and you said, “I got to go.” And then the next day or whatever you hear about what happened at the same club where you were. But it missed you. It missed you. It missed you.

Now, those instances is because of somebody else’s righteousness. Did you hear what I’m saying? Somebody else’s prayers that have been going up for you. Somebody’s been praying for you. I know when I was out there, somebody was praying for me. Mama was praying for me. Grand-mama was praying for me. And so things that should have taken me out never got a chance to get me.

The flood stopped. The rain stopped. But it didn’t stop until every living creature was destroyed. All the animals, all of humanity, except all that went into the ark. There was a flood. There was a flood.

You see, we’ve got to count the blessings, that God didn’t just totally destroy, that He was trying to get our attention. I got relatives down there, New Orleans, Baton Rouge. I got relatives down there. God spared them.

God is getting our attention. He’s calling us together to pray. Satan’s still trying to keep us distracted with our day to day activity of living. Yes, we’ve got to live. Yes, we’ve got to have our day to day activity. But yet we have to have our years open to what the Spirit of the Lord is saying to the church. Because I don’t know about you, but I’m getting up out of here. Do you hear what I’m saying? I’m going to be changed, in the moment, in a twinkling of an eye, and I’m going to be just like Him. I want to hear the trumpet sound. I want to hear the voice of the archangel. I don’t want to miss him. I don’t have time to get caught up in sin. I don’t have time. I don’t have time.

That’s why when I told you this morning, I said, “Paul solicited the prayers of the saints.” I solicit your prayers, because I don’t want to be caught in no snares and no traps. Do you want your pastor caught up in snares and traps? Because I got to hear for you the things that you can’t hear.

It was judgment that fell on the earth, a total annihilation, except for the righteousness. And God is speaking to us this morning that there is peace after the storm. Because when he sent the dove out, the dove kept coming back. But once everything was dry, the dove came back, the olive leaf in its mouth, and went back out and never came back again. And then he knew that there was peace, that it was time, and the storm was over.

That’s why we thank God for the Anointing. Because when the Presence of God is in a place, not only is there the fulness of joy . . . Joy is a fruit of the Spirit, and so is peace. And when God is present there’s the fulness of what? And there’s a fulness of peace.

So when you come to the house of God and there’s been Anointing of God flowing, the Bible said cast your cares upon Him, because He cares for you. And when you begin to give Him the cares, then that’s when you’ll start to have peace. That’s when the flood will be over. You have the ability to be in a hard place, but yet still have peace.

I remember days when I was just, “Oh, God.” I prayed louder and louder, like praying louder and louder was going to get God . . . God can hear me. He hears me before I open up my mouth. Have you ever been there, you been going through something, “Oh God! If You would just do it, God! Oooooohhhhh, God!”

And God just seem like He still don’t hear you. He heard you, but He wants you to have peace in the midst of the storm.

There’s someone here this morning that needs peace. You’ve been in the midst of a flood, but you were not destroyed, because you are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. But now you’re ready to walk out on dry land.

Every head bowed and every eye closed.

The storm may be raging in your life right now, but if I know God like I know God, when He said He’d never leave you nor forsake you, He meant just that. He’ll never leave you, and He’ll never forsake you. Though the storm may be raging and the billows are rolling, He’s right there with you. He said, “I’ll be with you when you walk through the flood. I’ll be with you when you go through the fire.” He said, “I’ll be with you.” He said, “When you’re at the lowest point, and it seems like you can get no lower,” he said, “I’ll be with you.” But all you got to do is trust Him.

The Bible said in Proverbs three, “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not to thine own understanding. In all of your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path.”

Somebody needs direction this morning. Somebody needs guidance this morning. Somebody needs a touch from the Lord this morning. Just lean on Him.

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