Noach and Abraham, the stages of the believer’s life
Judaism believes that Abraham was more righteous than Noach. The reason lies in the description itself: Noach was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time. Many consider that being right at a time when all humanity is seriously corrupt is not an excessive virtue. It is much easier to be perfect at a time like Noach’s than at the time of Abraham when other righteous men existed too. This is why Abraham is seen as more righteous than Noach. This qualitative difference is explained by the fact that Noach built his own ark, according to the Lord’s instructions, regardless of the fate of his contemporaries and without interceding for them in any way. In the case of Abraham, however, we see him pleading intensely before the Almighty to avoid the destruction of the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah.
There is, however, a more balanced opinion, in which we distinguish the historical or rather spiritual context in which the two characters lived without drawing hasty conclusions. According to this vision, Noach had no duty to help others. The decision to destroy all humanity was made, so Noach had no ministry to carry out towards other humans. Noach’s only duty was to build the Ark for himself, his family, and the animals, regardless of what would happen to the rest of the world. Abraham was another man, living in another era and therefore having a different calling.
I would rather tend to opt for this second theory. However, the message of our two patriarchs does not lie in comparing them to one another and looking for the most virtuous of them. We should rather consider them as prototypes, models of the stages of the life of every believer. One of the major mistakes we make as newly converted and / or born again young believers is that we want to go to war right away to deliver the world of the forces of evil. This is a noble and natural reflex given that we are spiritually children, therefore we are pures and of good will. As a child who has just discovered a new truth, we go to the onslaught of our neighbor in order to share with them the treasure we have just discovered. I also acted that way, causing a lot of problems. On the one hand, I went to areas where the Lord did not want me to go, so I put myself at risk in dangerous situations against which I was not armed. I thought to give the testimony of the Lord for the sake of the Body of Christ, without realizing that I made him more harm than anything else. Since then, one of my basic teachings towards younger brothers is to warn them to stay calm. You must not go on a crusade all the time trying to convert everything that moves. Paradoxically, one has to show some form of selfishness. A positive selfishness which consists in dealing only with one’s own edification at first, in order to avoid harming others, the Body of Christ and himself for lack of knowledge, experience and wisdom.
I have a 3 year old son who already knows how to do a lot of things because I taught him. However, I forbid him to do these things any time and without supervision even if he knows how to do it for fear of hurting someone or hurting himself. We often cook together, we cut meat with a knife, we light the pan, etc., but always in my presence. The same goes for spiritual work. It can only be fruitful and well done by spiritually mature and empowered people performing tasks that fit their abilities and age of mind. The stages of our lives as believers must follow the order of Noach to Abraham. Build yourself in silence at first in order to be saved. Once you have your foot firmly on the rock after the flood, you will be able to help others as Abraham did. If Noach had stopped to evangelize, to preach, to prophesy, or simply to respond to the attacks of the people who came to make fun of him during the construction in the middle of the desert, when there was no sign that the rain was coming, then Noach and his family would have perished with the rest of the corrupt world. In this case, Abraham would never have been born at all so that he could also fulfill the call that was assigned to him. If Noach had played the humanists, the whole work of the salvation of the Lord would have been broken. Man would not have been redeemed, but destined to an ultimate and irrevocable disappearance.
So we see how important it is to respect this chronological succession for fear that our spiritual inheritance brings no fruit and disintegrates forever.
How many believers are thus annihilated because they did not know this rule and had no elder brother who could have warned them not to venture too early on battlefields where much more powerful and educated hostile forces simply crushed their emerging faith.
zeev shlomo 4.10.2013