What is the church? And what can we continue to liken it to in Genesis 6?
"And Noah did according to all that God commanded him; thus he did."
If God had called and Noah had said, "mmmm, no thanks. That sounds dumb," the Bible would have only been seven chapters long, and the soggy pages of chapter seven would have read, "and Noah didn't float long enough to regret that decision." Or maybe Chapter 8 would read, "And God sighed, rolled up His sleeves and brought forth Dave from the earth..." Only God knows. But He gave grace enough to Noah for Noah to believe Him.
Now it's very common for people to say they believe. And it is very common for that belief to appear to be nothing more than cognitive assent. Yes, i think that's true. Yes, i think God is good and trustworthy. Yet is that what saved Noah and his family? Simply believing God when he said, I'm going to flood the earth? That kind of belief would have had him paddling the backstroke thinking, "Yep, knew it, God was right." Belief not only demands action, it dictates the action. If you really believe God, it will change everything. What you are doing. What your values are. That year that Noah spent preparing and building the ark, he reaped his fields and gardens but i guarantee you he didn't bother sowing next year's crop. He didn't waste the time. He probably didn't put that addition on the house or buy a new car. Wasn't much point in remodeling the kitchen. Probably drained the bank account and bought grain and oats. A fat wallet wasn't going to feed him on the other side. His priorities fit the belief he had. The truth he believed. Anything that didn't add to fitting and kitting the ark was a distraction and a waste of resources. The church responds with belief and appropriate action. We might say, it trusts and obeys.
There's so much more to be said about this but tomorrow's another day... if it comes. "What is the benefit, my brothers, if someone says that he has faith but does not have works? That faith is not able to save him, is it?" James 2