Genesis 8:20
Then Noah built an altar to the LORD. Taking from every kind of clean animal and clean bird, He offered burnt offerings on the altar.
Sermons
Fragrant OfferingsThe Congregational PulpitGenesis 8:20
Noah's Offering on Coming Forth from the Ark, and its ResultsSketches of SermonsGenesis 8:20
Noah's SacrificeF. D. Maurice, M. A.Genesis 8:20
Noah's Sacrifice Blessing the WorldJ. G. Angley, M. A.Genesis 8:20
Priest, Altar, SacrificeJ. S. Exell, M. A.Genesis 8:20
Sacrificial WorshipJ. Parker, D. D.Genesis 8:20
The Devout Conduct of a Good Man After a Special Deliverance from Imminent DangerJ. S. Exell, M. A.Genesis 8:20
The Worshippers of the New WorldC. Burton, LL. D.Genesis 8:20
The Sanctification of the EarthR.A. Redford Genesis 8:20-22
The sweet savor of man's burnt offerings -

(1) not the offerings of caprice, but the fulfillment of Divine commands,

(2) the reciprocation of Heaven's communications -

(3) ascends from the earth-built altar and fills the Lord with satisfaction. In return for that obedience and devotion the curse is removed, the earth is sealed with the saving strength of God in a covenant of peace.

I. RELIGIOUS LIFE IS ACCEPTABLE TO GOD when it is

(1) grateful acknowledgment of his mercy;

(2) humble obedience to his own revealed will;

(3) consecration of place, time, life, possessions to him.

II. UNION and COMMUNION between God and man is the foundation on which all earthly happiness and security rest.

III. The FORBEARANCE AND MERCY OF GOD in his relation to those whose hearts are yet full of evil is at once probation and grace. The ground is not cursed any more for man's sake, but, the more evidently, that which falls upon the ground may fall upon man himself. The higher revelations of God in the post-Noachic period were-certainly larger bestowments of grace, but at the same time they involved a larger responsibility. So the writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews reasons as to the punishment of those who trample underfoot the covenant of the gospel. The progressive covenants which make up the history of God's grace recorded in the Scriptures are progressive separations of the evil and the good, therefore they point to that complete and final separation in which God's righteousness shall be eternally glorified. - R.







And Noah builded an altar unto the Lord.
I. THERE IS AN EVIDENT DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE SACRIFICE OF NOAH AND THOSE OF CAIN AND ABEL. Here, under God's guidance, the mound of turf gives place to the altar which is built. An idea is discovered in the dignity of the inferior creatures; the worthiest are selected for an oblation to God; the fire which consumes, the flame which ascends, are used to express the intention of him who presents the victim.

II. WE MUST FEEL THAT THERE WAS AN INWARD PROGRESS IN THE HEART OF MAN corresponding to this progress in his method of uttering his submission and his aspirations. Noah must have felt that he was representing all human beings; that he was not speaking what was in himself so much as offering the homage of the restored universe.

III. THE FOUNDATION OF SACRIFICE IS LAID IN THE FIXED WILL OF GOD; in His fixed purpose to assert righteousness; in the wisdom which adapts its means to the condition of the creature for whose sake they are used. The sacrifice assumes eternal right to be in the Ruler of the universe, all the caprice to have come from man, from his struggle to be an independent being, from his habit of distrust. When trust is restored by the discovery that God means all for his good, then he brings the sacrifice as a token of his surrender.

(F. D. Maurice, M. A.)

The text teaches —

I. That worship should succeed every act of Divine deliverance.

II. That sacrifice is the only medium through which acceptable service can be rendered. Noah's sacrifice expressed —

1. A feeling of supreme thankfulness.

2. A feeling of personal guilt.

III. That no act of worship escapes Divine notice.

IV. That human intercession vitally affects the interests of the race.

(J. Parker, D. D.)

I. THAT NOAH GRATEFULLY ACKNOWLEDGED HIS DELIVERANCE AS FROM GOD.

II. THAT NOAH DEVOUTLY OFFERED TO GOD A SACRIFICE IN TOKEN OF HIS DELIVERANCE.

1. This sacrifice was the natural outcome of Noah's gratitude.

2. This sacrifice was not precluded by any excuse consequent upon the circumstances of Noah.

III. That the sacrifice of Noah was ACCEPTABLE TO GOD AND PREVENTIVE OF FURTHER EVIL TO THE WORLD.

1. It was fragrant.

2. It was preventive of calamity.

3. It was preservative of the natural agencies of the universe.

(J. S. Exell, M. A.)

Sketches of Sermons.
I. THE OCCASION ON WHICH THIS OFFERING WAS MADE.

1. How impressively would Noah and his family be reminded of the Divine forbearance which had been displayed to the whole world.

2. With what solemn awe would Noah and his family now view the earth bearing on every part of its surface the marks of recent vengeance.

3. With what adoring and grateful feeling would Noah and his family view their own preservation on this occasion.

II. ITS NATURE.

1. An expression of gratitude.

2. An acknowledgment of dependence.

3. A lively exhibition of his faith in the future atonement, as well as an appropriate testimony that his recent preservation was owing to the efficacy of that atonement.

III. ITS RESULTS.

1. The offering was accepted.

2. The promise which was given.

3. The covenant which was made.

(Sketches of Sermons.)

1. A believing priest.

2. A sanctified altar.

3. A clean sacrifice.

4. A type of Christ.

(J. S. Exell, M. A.)

The Congregational Pulpit.
I. NOAH'S SACRIFICIAL OFFERINGS.

1. Observe WHAT HE OFFERED.

(1)Burnt offerings.

(2)Clean beasts.

2. See how he offered.

(1)Voluntarily.

(2)Promptly.

(3)Liberally.

(4)Simply.

II. THE LORD'S GRACIOUS ACCEPTANCE THEREOF.

1. The Lord accepts a limited offering, if it be our best.

2. It is the sacrifice of faith which pleases God.

3. The Lord loves gratitude in return for mercies received.

4. The Lord visits the remnant of His people where there is family devotion.

5. In seeking to please God, the Christian secures richest blessings.

(The Congregational Pulpit.)

I. THE ACCEPTANCE OF NOAH'S SACRIFICE AND ITS TYPICAL IMPORT.

1. Look at the acceptance of Noah's sacrifice.

2. Noah's sacrifice was typical of Christ's, and like His brought a blessing on the world.

II. THE WISE ECONOMY OF GOD, IN HIS WISE LAWS OF NATURE FOR TEMPORAL BLESSINGS.

1. The wisdom and benevolence of God are visible in the variety of the seasons, and in the profusion of earthly blessings.

2. The wisdom of God is visible for faith in all His providential arrangements for the good of the world.

III. PRACTICAL REFLECTIONS.

1. Reflect that it is because of Christ's sacrifice the whole world is blessed.

2. Reflect how God deals with sinful men in great long suffering mercy.

3. Reflect and remember that the Lord Jesus shall stand like Noah, when a deluge of fire rolls over this world.

(J. G. Angley, M. A.)

1. It was an altar of obedience. With Noah the will of God was paramount. What is religion but obedience? — "the obedience of faith" — of which the entire simplicity constitutes its true perfection. Noah's career in the new world began in the spirit of essential obedience. At the command, "Go forth," the Ark is deserted; and, doubtless, in the spirit of faith the altar was erected.

2. It was an altar of gratitude and dedication. Noah was grateful to his Almighty Friend; and, as gratitude is a quality which loses its fragrance by delay, so he postponed every business and consideration to the thankful acknowledgment of his mercies.

3. It was an altar of propitiation. This is its most important feature. Worship and sacrifice are incorporated and identified from the beginning of the world. Man was always a sinner. He could never approach his Maker in any other character.

4. The altar of Noah was a family altar. He was the priest of his family. He required their presence before the throne of grace. He persuaded them to assist in praising God, and in making a covenant by sacrifice. A family altar is, transcendently and incalculably, a family blessing. With Noah, the worship of God was the first business he attended to. He lacked neither calls of necessity nor momentous cares; but he postponed all ether considerations to the service of God. Not like the majority amongst us, who fancy that they have too much to do to devote any time to religion. In the patriarch's worship there was no trace of selfishness. Many think there is no worship like free worship, and are most willing to pray where they have little to pay. What a reproof may they find in Noah! The seventh part of his whole stock and substance he dedicated to God. He reasoned not about future wants, but made an instant and "a whole burnt offering" to his Maker. He did it because it was God's appointment.

(C. Burton, LL. D.)

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