“And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly” (2 Peter 2:5)
With his act of obedience to God in building the Ark, Noah was preaching of the Judgment of God to come, and the salvation that was offered.
It is seen how Noah preached to the on-lookers, without words, the truth of how the Spirit of God is responsible for reproving the world of sin, and of righteousnesses, and of judgment (read John 16:8); coupled with the outward obedience. I think this is the ministry of the Holy Spirit of God which is mentioned in Genesis 6:3, where the Lord said, “My spirit shall not always strive with man.”
Righteousness fulfills the claim that the believer is a fulfilment of God’s claims. Righteousness is thus conformity with the claims of higher authority; and stands as an opposite to lawlessness.
The Scripture says that Noah was “a preacher of righteousness” – by Noah’s obedience in doing what God instructed him; by proclaiming to the ungodly world about the judgment to come (the rain, the flood) and about the deliverance from judgment (the Ark).
Noah’s lifestyle was that of a man living outwardly what God had performed inwardly. Noah found Grace in the eyes of the Lord. Then Noah was said to be “a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God” (Genesis 6:8-9).
It is recorded that God spoke to Noah; but it is not recorded that God instructed Noah to speak to anyone. Genesis 6:22 lets us know that Noah’s actions spoke louder than words. This verse says, “Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he” – a preacher of righteousness without words.
This is not an attempt to prove that Noah did not proclaim righteousness verbally. But it is meant to be encouragement for those of us who are Born-Again Believers, to be ones who proclaim, or put on display, the righteousness of God in all manner of conversation. We can do that by doing what Noah did after he found Grace in the eyes of the Lord.
The Lord says that our righteousness should exceed the righteousness of the Pharisees. God gave Noah a command. Jesus said:
“If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15)
“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.” (John 13:34)
“This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.” (John 15:12)
“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” (1 Corinthians 15:58)
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
You may not be called to preach the Word of God (the Gospel), but we are all commanded to be obedient to God’s Commands.
“Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” (Philippians 2:12)
“For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13)
“Do all things without murmurings and disputings:” (Philippians 2:14)
“That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;” (Philippians 2:15)
“Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.” (Philippians 2:16)