What are some of the most serious moments in the Bible?
I think there are a lot of serious moments throughout the Bible. But if I had to focus on a few, I would deftly focus on all of the times that God interacted with humanity. Most of these interactions have to do with our sin and how he steps in and brings his grace.
I think the first serious moment of the Bible is in Genesis 6. There is so much sin and sinful hearts throughout all of the earth that God can’t find anyone who is righteous. Although got started with a creation he deemed “very good,” within a short amount of time humanity was irredeemable.
If we understand the standard interpretation of the beginning of Genesis 6, angels married the daughters of men (Genesis 6:2), violating God’s standard for a human man and a human woman to marry (Genesis 2:18-26). And this was just one example of the wickedness of humanity.
It gets so bad that God predicts, “My Spirit will not always abide with man forever” (Genesis 6:3). Moreover, a few verses later the Bible comments that, “every intention of the thoughts of his (man’s) heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5).
God’s reaction must be judgment for humanity, but you can see his heart reaction, that it grieved his heart and he regretted that he made man on the earth (Genesis 6:6). This is about as low as a low point in the story can get.
I think it’s one of the most serious moments in the Bible because of God’s reaction. His first thought when he saw the wickedness of humanity would not change wasn’t excitement about judging the earth in a flood. It was grief and regret.
Sin always separates us from God and it always hurts his heart. We often think of the legal implications of our sin. But for God, it’s a relational issue first. When God saw there was no other way but the judgment of the flood to deal with sinful humanity corrupting his once good creation, he first reacted relationally.
God is on our side and he wants us to be holy and righteous like him. He wants a good creation that loves and serves him willingly. But he is holy and must judge sin when it occurs. So this is the first serious moment of the Bible as I see it.
Of course, the flood doesn’t solve the problem. It comes roaring back and still exists today. Humans still sin against God on a regular basis. One of the other serious moments of the Bible, although I don’t have a specific verse, is when God uses the prophets of Israel in the Old Testament to condemn the Israelites for how they treat one another and how they have turned to idols instead of God.
God knows that if they don’t change their tune, he will have to send them into exile, out of the precious and perfect land he promised to them. Once again, every time that God has the judge humanity, he is not excited about it. It hurts his heart but he must judge wickedness.
Despite the continual message of the prophets of Israel, the people ignore their God, their first love. He must choose to judge them for their wickedness and idolatry. It’s out of regret and sorrow once again that he turns to judgment. The Israelites don’t give him another option.
In case you think all of my solemn and serious moments are from when God must judge his creation for sin and wickedness, my final serious or solemn moment in Scripture comes from the day we call Good Friday.
As I said before, sending the flood and kicking Israel out of the Promised Land were bandages on the gushing wound of sin. Until Jesus came. The moment that Jesus arrived on the scene, he showed God’s character and what he truly is like. Through his teachings and ministry, his very life, Jesus showed the world what God really wants.
There was no truer moment than the three hours he hung on the cross. This is after an entire night of being judged by humans who didn’t know any better. The accusations and the suffering came in waves. Jesus hung on the cross in the most agony every human could ever feel.
Humanity was doing it all over again. Except this time, this was God’s final effort that would provide the ultimate sacrifice for sin and pathway to freedom through Christ. As he hung up there, he said seven things that still speak volumes today.
One of my favorite Easter sermons is when I go through these seven words from the cross. Every word that Jesus speaks, though he is in complete agony and pain, resonates with his goodness and encourages me today.
It’s a solemn moment as our Savior hangs from that tree. But it’s also a serious moment because the defeat that Satan and wickedness saw in the murder of Jesus on the cross is the same moment of victory where Jesus made a way to forgiveness of sins and restoration of relationship with God.
This sacred moment on the cross showed the depth of our depravity at its worst point, and the even deeper grace of Jesus poured out for us in his blood. Yes, indeed, this is the very best serious moment, the moment of victory over sin that each disciple in Jesus claims at the moment of his or her salvation.
There are so many more serious moments throughout the pages of Scripture. But I see these three as some of the most important and solemn moments. The Bible is a book of faith in Jesus who gave us salvation through his sacrifice on the cross.
It shows the moments leading up to that moment and what happened in the victories afterward. These are the high points and the serious points of the Bible.