1 And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.
2 The fear of you and the terror of you will be on every beast of the earth and on every bird of the sky; with everything that creeps on the ground, and all the fish of the sea, into your hand they are given.
3 Every moving thing that is alive shall be food for you; I give all to you, as I gave the green plant.
4 Only you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood.
5 Surely I will require your lifeblood; from every beast I will require it. And from every man, from every man’s brother I will require the life of man.
6 “Whoever sheds man’s blood,
By man his blood shall be shed,
For in the image of God
He made man.
7 “As for you, be fruitful and multiply;
Populate the earth abundantly and multiply in it.”

When was a time you were given a second chance? Maybe you were given a make-up test or allowed to right a wrong committed against another person. In these moments, most of us recognize the grace we have been shown and take the initiative to pursue the opportunity with renewed zeal.

In Genesis 9, mankind was given a second chance of sorts. In reading this passage, it is not hard to see the connection between the words God spoke to Noah and his family and those God spoke in the creation account to Adam and Eve (see Genesis 1). However, there was one staggering difference between the circumstances of God’s speaking these words to Adam and Eve and this renewed moment that these words were spoken to Noah and his family. Adam and Eve were without sin when they received these words; Noah and his family were not and had no hope of moving forward in complete obedience before the Lord.

Noah and his family would need a substitute to pay for their sin before God. Though they were given a new start in the world, their sin was close at hand. Our situation is not so different than Noah’s. We, too, are unable to separate ourselves from our sin. Our sin is not just what we do, but also who we are from birth. Yet, as Noah did, we are not left without hope.

Christ came into the world to live perfectly where we could not, to die the death we deserve, and was raised from the dead, that we might also be raised to new life in Him. Because this is true, those who place their faith in Him are given His Holy Spirit and the power to fight sin every day, trusting in Christ’s work for our acceptance by the Father. Truly in Christ, we have been given the second chance that we need more than any other.

• How have you experienced the practical nature of renewed life and second chances in Jesus?

• Where have you failed even in your second, third, and fourth chances? How is the gospel continually good news in these moments?

• Pray and thank God that we don’t have to rely on our own work for Him to accept us. Thank Him for the renewed life He gives us in Jesus.