Continuing on from Part 1, today I’m adding onto the list of all the ways God demonstrated His grace and mercy throughout the book of Genesis.
In Part 1, I looked at the ways God freely gave his unmerited favour and compassion through the creation of the world and the fall of man into sin, in chapters 1-3 of Genesis.
In Part 2, I will look at how He continues this pattern of grace and mercy to a wholly undeserving people, even as sin spreads through the world, in chapters 4-9 of Genesis.
- Eve conceives and has a baby. Although her sin against God deserves a punishment of death (which will eventually come), God, in His grace, gives her the gift of life. Genesis 4:1-2
- Cain is angry that God does not accept his offering, and yet God still reaches out and gives him the option to do the right thing. He warns Cain of the dangerous sin trap awaiting him. Genesis 4:7
- After Cain worries about being killed by whoever finds him as a “restless wanderer”, God gives him divine protection, by marking him and cursing anyone who would kill Cain. Cain does not deserve this protection, but God gives it anyway to reveal his own merciful character. Genesis 4:15
- Adam and Eve have another son, named Seth – Eve recognises this as the gracious gift of God, since she lost her son Abel. Genesis 4:25
- When sin had spread through the people on earth so much that “every inclination of the thoughts of [their hearts were] only evil all the time”, God wanted to completely wipe out humanity. But in His great mercy, he decided to spare Noah and His family. The Bible says that Noah found favour in God’s eyes. That he was “a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time and he walked with God,” but this does not mean that Noah was sinless. We learn later on that wiping out most of humanity didn’t deal with the problem of sin in every human’s heart (Genesis 8:21). The grace of God is revealed here in His decision to not completely wipe out humanity, but to carry on His original plan to fill the earth through Noah and His family, despite the great pain and cost to Himself that would come later (that is, the pain caused by all of humanity’s sin and the pain of losing His only son). Genesis 6:6-8
- God makes a covenant with Noah – he reaches out to save Noah and family, when this truly would have been impossible on their own. He tells Noah exactly what to do to be saved from the flood. Genesis 6:18
- God remembers Noah and acts to end the flood. Think about it – what would have happened if God had not remembered Noah? If he had left him there on the ark, in a world of water? The stopping of the rain and receding of the flood waters is another act of God’s grace and mercy to Noah. Genesis 8:1
- After the flood, God promises never again to curse the ground or destroy all living creatures because of mankind. This reveals God’s future grace – he knows that more sin is still there in the hearts of every person (“… even though every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood…”), but he promises to show grace. Genesis 8:21-22