And Noah began to be an farmer, and he planted a vineyard:…
I. THE MORAL DANGERS OF SOCIAL PROGRESS.
1. Increased temptations to sensual indulgence.
2. It exercises a tyranny over us.
3. It tends to make us satisfied with the present.
II. THE SPREADING POWER OF EVIL. He who once allows evil to gain the mastery over him, cannot tell to what degrading depths he may descend.
III. THE TEMPTATIONS WHICH ASSAIL WHEN THE EXCITEMENT OF A GREAT PURPOSE IS PAST.
IV. THE POWER OF TRANSGRESSION TO DEVELOP MORAL CHARACTER IN OTHERS.
1. The sins of others give occasion for fresh sins in ourselves.
2. The sins of others may give occasion for some high moral action.
V. THE APPARENT DEPENDENCE OF PROPHECY UPON THE ACCIDENTS OF HUMAN CONDUCT. The words of Noah take too wide a range and are too awful in their import to warrant the interpretation that they were the expression of a private feeling. They are a sketch of the future history of the world. The language is prophetic of the fate of nations. It may seem strange that so important an utterance should arise out of the accident of one man's transgression. The same account, too, must be given of the greater part of the structure of Scripture. Some portions were written at the request of private persons, some to refute certain heresies which had sprung up in the Church. Many of the books in the New Testament owe their origin to the needs and disorders of the time. But this does not destroy the authority or Divine origin of the Scripture, for the following reasons:
1. The Bible has thus imparted to it a human character and interest.
2. The Bible is unfolded by an inner law.
3. The Bible shows the advance of history towards an end.
(T. H. Leale.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard: