God created the world in six literal days. I am certain of it. Not so much because of the evidence, but because the Bible says so, and I believe it is without error from beginning to end. The evidence, though, is overwhelming. Not that I need any evidence, but it sure is encouraging to my heart to consider that everything in this world points to the truth of the Bible. That’s why it was a lot of fun to be able to visit the Ark Encounter and Creation Museum by Answers in Genesis not too long ago.
It was a hugely encouraging trip and one that I would recommend you make at some point in your life. Here are five lessons I learned by going on the trip, and I hope they’re an encouragement to you.
Noah’s Ark is Absolutely Plausible
I am certain that Noah’s Ark actually existed. And I am absolutely certain that there was a global flood. I don’t need proof since I believe that Scripture is without error, but going to the Ark Encounter certainly was an encouragement. It’s definitely not perfect. They even admit that they took some liberties to fill out the white spaces between the verses in the Bible, but their explanations of what the ark might have looked like are plausible. I didn’t need to see the Ark to believe in it, but I can’t imagine looking at it, reading the signs, and talking to the guides and not walking away from it encouraged as a believer, knowing that the Bible’s account of the flood is not only plausible but absolutely true.
The Ark Encounter Won’t Convince Unbelievers
Simply put, the Ark Encounter doesn’t have the ability to cause people to believe. To use Abraham’s words (Luke 16:31), even if Ken Ham were able to bring back the actual Noah from the dead and hire him as the main tour giver, that would not convince an atheist about the truth of the Bible. It takes the Holy Spirit working through the Word of God (Rom. 10:17) to change the heart of man. I truly appreciated Answers in Genesis and their success in getting the Gospel out. They used Ray Comfort materials, as well as other tracts and videos, to share the Gospel because they realize that the Ark is inefficient in changing the hearts of those who come through the doors. I also noticed that the Ark does attract all kinds of people, from Catholics to Amish folks, all the way to Muslims and atheists. It was a vivid reminder that the truth in the bible, though offensive, is at the same time the most attractive thing in the world since it is the only means to truly know God.
Noah was a Preacher of Righteousness
The guys at Answers in Genesis did a great job highlighting Noah and his family. It is encouraging to think about Noah’s faithfulness. First of all, his holiness: when everyone else’s wickedness was so great that God was especially grieved, he was determined to please God. I can’t imagine being the only God-fearer on earth. Noah was alone in his love for God and yet he never wavered and kept on building the ark despite the constant ridicule and standing alone. But it was his preaching that really stood out. Peter doesn’t go into much detail in 2 Peter 2:5, but he does refer to Noah as a preacher of righteousness. Of course, Noah would have simply been preaching through his building of the ark. Through his actions, he would certainly be drawing attention and questions, and he would have had to explain about the judgment of God that would be coming. Noah is an example to us, of believing and trusting God despite the whole world being against him.
God Hates Sin
One of the most fascinating displays at the Ark Encounter is the room of children’s books. Behind glass, they display a lot of the children’s book about Noah. And, though they don’t say it out loud, you can tell that Answers in Genesis isn’t a big fan of most children’s books. The day the flood began would have been, perhaps, the most shocking day in history for many people. Many would have realized too late that crazy Noah wasn’t so crazy after all. There would have been bodies everywhere. Drowned animals would have filled the sea. Destruction and misery would have devastated the earth, and Noah and his family, though happy to have survived, would not have had huge smiles on their faces, as most children’s books depict them having. The thoughts on the minds of all eight passengers on the ark would have been something along the lines of, “God must really hate sin!” You don’t walk away from the Ark Encounter without self-reflection and a renewed commitment to fight against and to hate your sin.
God Can Change Anyone’s Heart
Perhaps the greatest reminder is that God is Sovereign. He alone can save a soul, and all the evidence in the world can’t cause a person to believe. And yet people believe. The folks at Answers in Genesis aren’t smarter than your average scientist. They simply have been given new hearts by God, love His Word and are unafraid to share the truth with the world. Like Noah, we can confidently stand strong, relying on the Word of God, and faithfully preaching the truth to the world around us. Unlike Noah’s day, when God didn’t save anyone other than Noah and his family, today He is patiently enduring evil and allowing people to come to know Him.
There will come a day where His patience will end, though, and He will send not a flood, but He will send people to an eternal fire. As Noah did so many years ago, we, too, must stand faithfully on God’s Word, without compromise, and must declare the truth of His Word to a dying world that so desperately needs it, because, like in the day of Noah they will stand before God at the day of judgment, and they will be crushed and swept away in their sin.
I encourage everyone to visit the Ark encounter if you get the chance, you don’t need to in order to be convinced of the truth of the Bible but it will certainly be an encouragement to you in your faith and love for God’s Word.