The Old Testament ultimately points forward to Jesus Christ. Learning to read the Bible this way is incredibly heart-warming and it stirs me to worship Christ all the more. Let's take a look at another Old Testament story: Noah and the flood.
Do you remember why God sent a flood in the first place?
"The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. So the Lord said, 'I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them'” (Genesis 6:5-7).
God sees that the world is filled with evil. The flood is God’s judgment of human sin. Just like death was the consequence for Adam and Eve’s sin, so it is for all sin. So where does Noah fit in this bleak assessment of the human condition?
"But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord...Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God" (Genesis 6:8-9).
God then commands Noah to build the ark and then we read this:
"The Lord then said to Noah, 'Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation'" (Genesis 7:1).
God explicitly says he has found Noah righteous. Noah’s family is the beneficiary of his righteousness. They get to board the boat because of Noah’s righteousness. Noah’s righteousness shields them from God’s judgment.
This story of Noah prefigures the story of God’s judgment to come. There is to come a greater judgment. It’s not going to come in the form of a literal flood that ends life on earth. It’s a form of judgment that will last into eternity. Jesus is the true and better Noah. Just like Noah’s righteousness shielded his family from God’s judgment. Jesus’ righteousness will shield his family from God’s judgment to come. Are you part of Jesus’ family? Are you on the boat?
The Bible is not a collection of isolated stories, but a single, unified story ultimately about Jesus Christ.