Observations as I follow God through the Chronological Bible.
Read Genesis 6:1-8
After sentencing Cain to a life of lack and restless wandering for murdering his brother, God was silent for 1,400 years by earth time. As God perceives time a little over one dayi had elapsed when he said, “My Spirit will not struggle with humans forever, because they are flesh and blood. They will live 120 years.” The Message Bible says, “they can expect a life span of 120 years.”
I am not sure if God shortened the human lifespan to an average of 120 years, or if he determined to flood the earth in 120 years, or both. The Chronological Bible places the flood 120 years after God made this statement. By Moses day the expected life span had decreased from 1,000 years to 70 maybe 80.ii Today, some live beyond 100 years but it is rare.
God’s intent may not be clear, but there is one thing certain. God can and will come to the end of his patience. Humanity had corrupted to the point of no return in less than two days (as God perceives time) from the day Adam and Eve thought good would come from eating of the tree of knowledge.
For the first time since I started following God through the Chronological Bible I see emotion in him. In verse one God regretted (NIV), repented (KJV), or was sorry (MSG) that he created man. In verse seven God was grieved (KJV), deeply troubled (NIV), or heartbroken (MSG) depending on which version of the Bible we read.
The source of God’s sorrow is the corruption in the heart of man whose “every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”iii Jesus said “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”iv People relied on their own knowledge. Their knowledge made them proud and pride made them violent. Violence was the tipping point in God’s decision to destroy the earth with a flood.
Have you ever done something and wished you hadn’t? If your answer is yes, you are like God. The difference between you and God is how you respond. God could have destroyed the earth and moved on to other things. There was nothing good in humanity to prevent God from destroying them. But there was something good in God. He promised the serpent he would crush his head by the seed of a woman. That promise had not been fulfilled. If he abandoned humanity, he would have justified the serpent’s accusation that God is a liar.
God had a choice. Take the easy way out and be a liar or take the hard way and keep his word. People often choose the easy way out of a problem, but our creator does not. His integrity governed his actions and salvaged humanity.