I came across this quotation when preparing to preach on the Great Flood some weeks ago. It answers the question, “Why did God destroy every person?” It also points a spotlight at the cross to make us marvel at Calvary more than the Flood. I’ve underlined and put in bold some of the most important parts of the quotation.

“This event then gives us some measure by which we can know how much God will do to maintain holiness upon earth. In this catastrophe every one who strives after godliness may find encouragement, seeing in it the Divine earnestness of God for good and against evil. There is only one other event in history that so conspicuously shows that holiness among men is the object for which God will sacrifice everything else. There is no need now of any further demonstration of God’s purpose in this world and His zeal for carrying it out.… The Flood has not been forgotten by almost any people under heaven, but its moral result is nil. But he whose memory is haunted by a dying Redeemer, by the thought of One Whose love found its most appropriate and practical result in dying for him, is prevented from much sin, and finds in that love the spring of eternal hope.” [(Marcus Dods,) Book of Genesis, pp. 66–67][1]

Amen! Let us hold the cross in our minds today, turning over its significance for us – the beating heart of the gospel (I Cor. 15:1-4), the horrible and beautiful display of God’s righteousness (Rom. 3:25), the removal of God’s wrath (Rom. 3:25), the means of our being declared righteous by God (Rom. 3:26) the ultimate example for us to follow, both of loving obedience to God (Phil. 2:5-8) and of patiently suffering injustice (I Pet. 2:21-23). Behold, enjoy, and bow in awe. Here is the way to turn in disgust from the sins that so easily attract us; here is the way to be drawn to a holy life because of God’s ocean-deep love for us.

[1] Allen P. Ross, Creation and Blessing: A Guide to the Study and Exposition of Genesis (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1998), 198.
* Image taken from Answers in Genesis page “The Flood,” accessed January 20, 2016.