It is seldom that the devil ever only delivers one blow with his sword and no more. Having hit at this target with a “forearm” slice, he almost inevitably renders a second wound with the returning “backhand”. Indeed, it is sometimes very difficult to tell which of the two blows constitutes his primary intention and purpose.
This fact has been borne in upon us recently in our sermons in the early chapters of Genesis and in relation to the flood that God sent upon this earth in the days of Noah. There is little doubt that the devil is working much havoc in our day through the teaching of evolutionism – that “lie” that has exalted the creature above the Creator. In the spread of the lie, the Genesis flood has become one of the main targets and has come in for a tremendous volume of abuse and ridicule. The reason for that is not at all difficult to discover. There is not one single factor that would more explain the history of this earth (geologically etc.,) than the flood that God sent upon this earth in the days of Noah. However, the wisdom of this world cannot possibly allow such evidence, for to allow such a flood is to open the door for admitting that there is a God and Creator of this world, and such a God who has revealed Himself on the pages of His word, the Bible. So, the flood must be discounted and derided, and so, the devil swings his sword in that very direction with every wheel and turn.
However, is that the whole of the story? When the devil hits at the flood in his advancement of the evolution lie is that his only purpose, or, indeed, is it his primary purpose? With regards to the latter part of the question, it is probably impossible to really say; with regards to the first part, we would have no hesitation in saying that the advancement of evolutionism in the devil's attacks on the flood is not his only purpose at all.
You see, the flood is not only one of the great “facts” of the Bible, it is also one of the great “figures” of the Bible, as well. There are great facts in the Bible which stand, more or less, only as great facts, and are never used at a later point in the Bible as great “figures” - as outstanding events illustrating yet more outstanding events to come. But the flood is not like that. And the flood in the days of Noah not only thunders through the early parts of Genesis as far as the fact of it is concerned, but it still rushes on in the pages of the New Testament, and is only seen as truly abating from off the face of the earth, as far as the figure of it is concerned, at that time when time shall be no more and when God will have spoken the last word with regards to the eternal fate of every soul that ever lived.
We need only remember the Lord's words, “As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be ….” The flood in the days of Noah is the great biblical figure for the judgment in the last and final day of the Lord. Might we not expect the devil to have the destruction of that in his mind's eye, then, as he attacks the flood in our day with regards to his lie of evolutionism also? Indeed, yes. And it is, surely, possible that his attacks on the flood via evolutionism are in themselves subservient to the great aim of destroying every vestige of the thought of coming judgment in the hearts and minds of men and women in our day.
You'll remember how the men and women of Peter's day eliminated the thought of the coming day of the Lord. In a word, they abolished the remembrance of the flood; that's what Peter is telling us. “For this they willingly are ignorant of – (they have calculatedly made themselves ignorant of) – that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: but the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.” (2 Peter 3:5)
God in His judgment destroyed the old world by a flood – an undeniable fact. But an undeniable figure of an undeniable fact also – the judgment of this present world which will surely occur. But of the fact of the flood men and women will love to be “willingly ignorant,” for they must be willingly ignorant of the flood's abiding figure, for they will not receive the fact of which the flood is the abiding figure – the judgment to come.
Just one other point: as the devil strikes fiercely with forearm and backhand, he can also strike a measure of fear and trembling into those who witness his attacks. What we mean is this: as men and women today have come to regard the Genesis flood as unworthy of their 20th century intelligence and more suited to a bye-gone age and its thought-forms, we must be careful that, as Christians, we don't feel intimidated and begin to treat the message of “flee from the wrath to come” in the same way. It is, surely, significant that as the world has increased in its denouncement of the flood, the church has decreased in its pronouncement of the judgment. We must never forget that man always looks on himself as “modern” when compared to former generations. The men of Peter's day looked on themselves as tremendously modern, so much so, that they “scoffed” at the things that were written in the Bible, taking a good part of their stand from any acceptance of God's flood. But as their voices were loud in disclaiming, Peter's voice was loud in proclaiming. The Lord asks nothing more from His people than that. He asked nothing more from dear old Noah himself - “A preacher of righteousness in his generation.” He asks nothing more from us. May we be prepared to render what He asks.