In these days when the very earth is groaning and we are seeing unrest and uncertainty throughout the world, it is very tempting for us to see New Zealand as a safe little haven where we remain untouched. I think our geographic location reinforces this feeling. But in reality, there is only one safe place on earth and that is in a covenant relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
We are told in Matthew 24 that the last days will be as the days of Noah. The days of Noah allude to judgements on a godless world and divine protection of a righteous man and his family. God’s means of protection was an ark, a box.
There are actually three arks in the Bible: the ark built by Noah, the Ark of the Covenant and the ark that transported baby Moses through the waters of the Nile. All three arks required acts of participation by the people involved in constructing them, but especially acts of faith.
Noah’s ark is a picture of salvation and deliverance from God’s judgements, and it was the means of preservation of the founders of the Gentiles. The ark on the Nile is a picture of God’s protection and deliverance from the judgements of humans. It also contained and preserved Moses the prophet of the Jewish dispensation. The third preservation is the Ark of the Covenant, which symbolises communion and fellowship with God and speaks of the saving of all generations. It is the promise that God will meet with us and commune with us if we seek him. We will all need each of these arks some time in our lives.
These arks symbolise the hope of mankind, which is an enduring humanity. But all three encapsulate the ark that we enter into when we come into relationship with Jesus Christ. It is through him that we are saved from judgements.
What kind of ark should we be building for our families at this time? It is a combination of all three. We are to build in our boxes, our homes, the faith and participation required for preservation. Just as the manna was preserved in the Ark of the Covenant, we are to collect our daily manna, the word of God, and devour its contents. We are to engage our faith, and trust that as we bring God’s presence into our homes that he will hover over and be present with us.
It is not the bricks or wood that keep us safe, nor our geographic location. It is the eternal safety that we enter into when we are in Christ. When we daily seek him and his presence, we place ourselves and our families in the ark of his eternal divine protection. Then when the storms come—and they will—the house on the rock (which is Jesus Christ) stands firm (Matthew 7:25).