Dr. S. Lewis Johnson comments on the genealogy of Adam. The life of Enoch is also exposited.
We are turning in our Scripture reading to Genesis chapter 5 and I am going to read through the 5th chapter for the Scripture reading this morning.
“This is the book of the generations of Adam. The day when God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female and he blessed them and named them Man in the day when they were created. When Adam had lived one hundred and thirty years, he became the father of a son in his own likeness according to his image and named him Seth. Then the days of Adam after he became the father of Seth were eight hundred years and he had other sons and daughters. So, all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years and he died. And Seth lived one hundred and five years and became the father of Enosh. Then Seth lived eight hundred and seven years after he became the father and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Seth lived 912 years, and then he died. So all the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years, and he died. And Enosh lived ninety years, and became the father of Kenan. Then Enosh lived eight hundred and fifteen years after he became the father of Kenan, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enosh were nine hundred and five years, and he died. And Kenan lived seventy years, and became the father of Mahalalel. Then Kenan lived eight hundred and forty years after he became the father of Mahalalel, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Kenan were nine hundred and ten years, and he died. And Mahalalel lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Jared. Then Mahalalel lived eight hundred and thirty years after he became the father of Jared, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred and ninety-five years, and he died. And Jared lived one hundred and sixty-two years, and became the father of Enoch. Then Jared lived eight hundred years after he became the father of Enoch, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Jared were nine hundred and sixty-two years, and he died. Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Methuselah lived one hundred and eighty-seven years, and became the father of Lamech. Then Methuselah lived seven hundred and eighty-two years after he became the father of Lamech, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred and sixty-nine years, and he died. Lamech lived one hundred and eighty-two years, and became the father of a son. Now he called his name Noah, saying, ‘This one shall give us rest from our work and from the toil of our hands arising from the ground which the LORD had cursed.’”
And I’d like for you to notice in the reading here that it is evident from this statement of Lamech that he has been reflecting upon the promise of the seed and also the judgement that god placed upon man as a result of his sin. You can see the language is very close to the language of Chapter 3. Verse 13,
“Then Lamech lived five hundred and ninety-five years after he became the father of Noah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Lamech were seven hundred and seventy-seven years, and he died. And Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth.”
And the important thing for you to notice here is the order of these sons is not the chronological order of their births. Now you learn this from other parts of the Bible, well, other parts of Genesis for that matter. The oldest son was Japheth, the middle son was Shem, and the youngest son was Ham. But, you can see the stress that is laid upon Shem here is due to the fact that it is Shem through whom the seed is to come. And so that is the important thing for the writer of this particular genealogy.
The subject for this morning in the exposition of book of Genesis is “The Reign of the Grim Reaper and Rapture of Enoch.”
There are a number of different ways to describe the contents of Genesis chapter 5. It concentrates on the history of Adam’s other issue. We have just seen some concentration upon the issue of Adam through Cain. But, here we have concentration upon the issue of Adam through Seth, it has been called the history of Adam and it has been called by some the family of Seth. What Genesis chapter 5 seems to be is the history of Adam through Seth. It might be called biblical boot hill and Enoch’s blast-off, but that would be characteristic of the puffery of the 20th Century to call it that. So, we won’t do that.
Derek Kidner who has written a very helpful little book on Genesis in the Tyndale series has suggested that Genesis chapter 5 serves three purposes in the book of Genesis. In the first place by mentioning all of the names of the genealogy it accents the value of the individual, this is just an indication of the fact that the individuals of human history are known and are remembered by God. And particularly of those that have stood in the line of faithful. And second Mr. Kidner has said it is valuable for us because it tells us how we come from Seth whose name means “appointed to Noah the deliverer” giving us the chronological pathway from Seth down to Noah. Of whom there shall be a great deal of information given. And then Mr. Kidner says third, that it demonstrates the rain of death. We have this constant referring that occurs eight times and he died, and he died, and he died. And it tells us also of the possibility of the defeat of death and the experience of Enoch because Enoch was not, for God took him.
Now we find both of these things illustrated through the Bible, this rain of death and the possibility of the defeat of death. The Apostle Paul in the New Testament leaning heavily on Genesis says, “For this cause as by one man sin entered into the world and death by sin, so death passed upon all men, because all sinned.” And all men sinned in Adam, and then at the conclusion of that same 5th chapter of the Epistle to the Romans, he speaks about the possibility of the defeat of death through the Lord Jesus Christ, beginning at the 20th verse of that chapter, he writes, and “The Law came in that the transgression might increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more. that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
When you read Genesis chapter 5, there are a couple of questions that constantly arise and any Bible study these will asked sooner or later. Someone will say knowing something about scientific information and data, will say, does not the chronology as presented in Genesis chapter 5 seem too brief to account for the scientific data that we have concerning the history of man? Can we really say that from Adam to Noah is only approximately 1,650 years?
Now it is possible to answer this in two ways. We can insist that this is what is called a tight genealogy, and I must admit that it is impossible to prove that that is wrong. It may well be that this is a tight genealogy with all the links and the chain being given by Moses, but on the other hand, it may not be a tight genealogy because we have biblical justification, biblical tradition for that matter. For genealogies that are not tight; that is, genealogies in which not every link is given, but certain individuals passed over, we have one illustration of that in the first genealogy of the New Testament.
Incidentally, if you are reading through the Bible according to our schedule, you have been reading the Book of Genesis in the morning and Book of Matthew at night. And you read Matthew chapter 1, which has the genealogy of the Lord Jesus and while I know if you are like I am, you did not bother to stop and read all that the Bible had to say about everyone of those names, but you may have noticed in your reading if you are very familiar with the Old Testament that in verse 8 of Matthew chapter 1, three names in the genealogy of the Lord Jesus are skipped over and not mentioned; that is, they are dropped out. The links in the chain are all there in the sense that the genealogy is legal and proper, but not every person is given. It is the grandson instead of the father and so it skips from one man to his grandson, as a matter of fact, in that verse to his great grandson. So, it is possible for genealogies to be accurate and in accordance with the culture of the times and not necessarily have every link.
There are genealogies in which the individuals are highlighted. It is just to say if I might say and I could say this, I have a son. In my genealogy he also has twin daughters and you might give my genealogy by saying as Lewis Johnson begat or begot as Lewis Johnson Jr., and he was the father of a son, which you might actually skip and say that as Lewis Johnson or Lewis was the father of Colleen and Heather, skipping my son entirely, that would be proper because I am in that sense their father in the geneological line. Now, that is what we may have in Genesis chapter 5. When I finished this morning, someone came to me and said but does not Jude, a passage to which we’ll refer later, when it says that Enoch was the seventh from Adam and since he is the seventh here in this genealogy does not that indicate that this is a tight genealogy. Well, it might, but it doesn’t necessarily because it might indicate simply that Jude speaks of Enoch’s prophecy and Enoch’s prophecy is written in the light — and Jude speaks of Enoch in the light of this particular genealogy, he is the seventh from Adam in this particular genealogy. So, we don’t know whether this is a tight or a loose genealogy.
We do know that so far as the Scripture record is concerned there is no real problem then over the chronology, over the 1,650 years. Now, another problem that has caused some difficulty to readers of the Bible, at least they have pondered it, I have. I imagine most of you have. And that problem is the longevity of the patriarchs. We don’t know anything about anybody living to be nine hundred and sixty nine years of age. We know about individuals who live to be one hundred or hundred and five or even maybe a hundred and thirty. I read of a man not long ago, who was hundred and five years old and someone asked him what he thought about it. He said, well, if he had known he was going to live that long, he would have taken better care of himself. [Laughter] Well, that rather impressed itself upon me, he was an old man and we do know of men living that old, but 900 and 965 and ages like that. Perhaps the Bible doesn’t intend itself to be taken literally, and some have suggested that maybe if the years of the Bible are equivalent to our lunar months, and if you divide Methuselah’s 965 years by 12 I didn’t bother to do this incidentally, but I think you will come up with something around eighty five to ninety years and that would be a reasonable kind of age.
But, that wouldn’t make such good sense on the other side, because Enoch who lived to be sixty five would have been approximately five and half when he gave birth to Methuselah, [laughter] which would also cause some problems for us.
So, I’m inclined to think that we have longevity in the patriarchs because of one or two things. The climate have been more salubrious than our climate. It maybe possible as some have suggested that there was a kind of canopy over the earth before the time of the flood and they lived in a hot house atmosphere not exposed to the things to which we are exposed. Or on the other hand, it may well have been that the ravages of sin had not yet come to their fruition in the effects that they have upon these bodies that we have now. After all, it was not so long before this that Adam a man without sin was created. And so when he sinned and failed and the sin principle began to work, it would take time for it to work itself out in the body to the extent it has today. It may just be that the ravages of sin were much weaker than they are now. But, I personally don’t really have any great problem with these things; these are some of the things that we will learn about when we get to heaven. I want to look now at the account and set our attention in it, but let me say a few words about the family of Seth from Adam to Enoch first.
This is the book of the generations of Adam, Moses begins in the genealogy and it reminds us immediately of the Gospel of Matthew because it begins “This is the book of the generation of Jesus, the Messiah.” It is almost as if when we put these two chapters by the side of one another that we have the history of two men given in the Bible, the history of Adam, the first and the history of Adam the last. And in fact, all history is subsumed under the history of these two men. Agustine said that many hundreds of years ago, he said, God deals with two men, he deals with Adam, the first and he deals with Adam, the last. All men have sinned in Adam, the first and are destined to die. Those who have believed in Adam, the last experience the new birth and live forever in him. So, this is the book of the generations of Adam, the first and so it is the story of sinners. He begins the chapter with a kind of summary of the creation of Adam and Eve. In the days when God created man, he made him in the likeness of God, he created the male and female and he blessed them and named them the Adamses. So, now he didn’t really name them that did he? Actually he named them Man, well we should rewrite that. He named them, person not Man. But, you see Man here is used generically, it is a term that includes the male and the female. The male and the female are Man, he named them Man.
I had a good Bible teacher, in fact, he led me to the Lord, who used to like to say that Eve’s name was Adam before it was Eve, but that really is not what Moses intends by this in my opinion. He merely means to say that God gave them the generic name of Man. And it should be rendered Man, he named them Man in the day that they were created. So, here we have the glorious original state of Man created by God, created male and female blessed and named Man when they were created.
Incidentally it says God named them and we’ve been saying in our study of Genesis that the name indicates character — that was true in Semitic culture. And we also said that when Adam named the animals it indicated that he had a magnificent intellect given by God of course. He was able to understand the animals and name them. He did not simply give them an identifying letter or two, but he named them in the sense that he understood them and their names matched their character and being.
Now it says here that God named Man in the day when they were created suggestive to us of the fact that God names man because only he truly understands man. The only one who really understands man is God. [Repeat] The only one who really understands man is God. That is also why psychology cannot be realistic or accurate unless it takes into account what we read in the scriptures about man. A psychology or a psychiatry that does not begin with what God reveals to us about man is bound to go astray.
Now, that which begins with the Bible and rules upon that foundation has possibilities of being a true biblical psychology. The account that follows is the account of the genealogy itself. I won’t read through this again. I am reminded of the old Scots minister who was reading from the opening chapter of the Gospel of Matthew and he started reading, “Abraham begat Isaac, and Isaac begat Jacob, and Jacob beget Judah,” and then looking on ahead at the mass of names that were coming up and wondering about how he would pronounce them, he said, “And they kept on begetting one another all the way down this page, and half the way down the next,” and went on from there. [Laughter] So, I won’t read again.
I know you wondered how it was that I pronounced all of those names without any hesitation at all. It’s of course because I know them so well. [Laughter] But I also learned this, that when you don’t know them act like you do and the people in the audience being unsure of themselves will say, “He seems to know what he’s talking about” and we’ll get by them.
Now, we have 1,500 years then of monotony in less than 1500 words,” someone has said. “And he died,” “And he died,” eight times over and that little phrase or a clause, is like the tolling of a bell. Someone has said, “Like the solemn toll of patriarchal funeral bell we wander over biblical boot hill.” I noticed that only the sons of Seth are named. The family of Cain, also descended from Adam is an irrelevance, so far as the purpose of the author in this chapter is concerned because what he is really interested in is not the other sons of Adam. He is interested in Seth and Seth’s ancestry because it is from Adam through Seth, not from Adam through Cain that “the seed of the women” is to come. And so that is the important thing for the author.
And we noted that at the end of the chapter he displays that again by naming Shem first, of the sons of Noah. So it is the line through Seth that is important. Incidentally the text says in verse 3, when Adam had lived 130 years he became the father of a son in his own likeness, to his — according to his image.
Now, that means two things. That means of course, that the image of God is still something that pertains to every one of us. We are in the image and likeness of God, but it is a marred image now. It is a corrupt image. The image remains. In the New Testament we are specifically told that in more than one place. Also here, we are told that, but we should remember that while we are in the image of God, it is a marred image. And when Seth is born in the image of Adam, it means not simply on the image of God, but in the image of Adam who is a fallen image of God. So the text here became the father of a son in his own likeness. It is not meant to exclude the fact that Seth is born a sinner. He is in the image of Adam, in his image as well as in the marred the image of God.
Well now, let’s move down to verse 18 and following, because here we have the story of Enoch. And we want to spend a little time on this account because it is emphasized in Genesis chapter 5. In verse 18 we read, “And Jared lived one hundred and sixty-two years, and became the father of Enoch.” And verse 21,”And Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. Then Enoch walked with God.”
It is almost as if you’re looking at the TV screen, as many of you no doubt will do this afternoon. And suddenly just preparatory to the commercial, the projector stops and someone is caught in some act. It’s as if the projector stops. And suddenly, when Enoch’s name is mentioned, we now are special information concerning this man who is the seventh from Adam. And further, we learn concerning Enoch that he was not, for God took him. For this one-man, the patriarchal funeral bell did not toll. Enoch did not die. Here is a man who planted his feet on higher ground and walked with God into eternity. And so far as we know he is still walking with God.
The account, which I said above, he, naming the man he lived after he begat so and so, so many years instead of that in connection with Enoch, we read he walked with God for 300 years. Of them it was said “and he died.” But of Enoch it is said “he was not.” It has been called the briefest biography in the Bible. Enoch walked with God. Well, it is one of the briefest in the Bible. I love the one that is so briefly epitomizes the life of David given by the apostle Paul in the New Testament, he served the purpose of God in his own generation. Wouldn’t it be wonderful, if that could be said of us? He served the purpose of God in his own generation. Nothing particularly about great exploits, we don’t have to have them to be great in the eyes of God, he served the purpose of God in his own generation. And then there is another one, which is rather solemn and terrifying one in one sense, it’s the biography of Saul. He played the Saul. He played the fool. Now we often, I’m sure, have thought of individuals that we have known, whose life could be summarized and epitomized by that little statement “he played the fool”.
Enoch walked with the God, but you know of all the biographies of Scripture and all of the brief ones, there is none more eloquent than Enoch’s, none more suggestive. And very few are more complete, he walked with God, yes, few or more complete because, what does it tell us about Enoch? Well, it tells us what he was as a father, first of all. He walked with God. “Oh for a father who walks with God?” someone might say, a father who walks with God.
Consequently, a child is brought up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, a father who walks with God. What could be greater than that? Instructed in the things of God, someone concerned about the soul of his children, some one anxious to see them brought through the knowledge of the Lord Jesus. What a magnificent father Enoch was. He walked with God.
And it tells us something about Enoch as a husband too. He loved his wife as Christ loved the church. He cared for his wife. He ministered too her, he was her true spiritual head as he should be. He walked with God. You don’t have to tell me what kind of man he was as a husband, I already know, he walked with God. He was exactly what the will of God sets forth for the husband. It tells us what he was as a neighbor too. He was a godly neighbor and I understand exactly how his affairs with his neighbors were carried out, it tells us what he was as a citizen, it tells us what he was as a worker, it tells us what he was as a friend. He walked with God. We don’t really need a biography of Enoch, we already know the great principles of the life of Enoch. He walked with God.
Now that is an interesting thing about Enoch here, I think it says Enoch lived sixty five years and became the father of Methuselah. And then he walked with God for 300 years so he lived 65 years. He was a father of Methuselah and he walked with God for 300 years. Did his faith begin with the birth of his child? That’s possible. That’s very meaningful, this text does not really say that, but it’s possible because who as a father holding his first child in his arms has not felt a sense of responsibility that he never felt until that time.
Now, I will never forget the day when I was able to put my son in my arms. I was the first and certainly I did teach my wife how to hold him. It was so long ago, it wasn’t the days when we had practical nurses, she did not have an opportunity to hold the baby for a couple of weeks afterwards really. So I had to instruct her how to hold a baby. But the sense of responsibility that comes when your own child is in your arms, it’s possible that Enoch began to think about spiritual things. My responsibilities go beyond this life with this new life given to me. Some have said it’s because Social Security came to him after all, he was 65, and so he began to think about the future. No, that’s not really true. There may be something else here because it’s not certain that Enoch was converted when his child was born. Now, we know that Enoch was a prophet and the New Testament, it states that he prophesied. We therefore know that he had, since he walked with God intimate relationship with God. He named his child Methuselah. Methuselah is an interesting name. Some modern scholars think that it means man of a javelin. But there is no certainty about it even in modern scholarship. When I was just a new Bible student someone put in my hand a book that had all the names of the Bible and the meaning of those names. It was not too scientific, but many of them were correct. I remember the name Methuselah and definition that was given of that name, when he is dead it shall come.
Now the Hebrew word, muwth does have to do with death. But the Hebrew word shelach, which is apparently the latter part of Methuselah’s name means “to send.” So it is more likely that his name means, when he is dead it shall be sent. Now if that is true and since we know that when Methuselah died, the flood did come. It is just possible that he was told that he should name that child Methuselah because when he is dead the catastrophe shall come, the flood.
Well don’t you know what people think, we are thinking about the family of Enoch and Methuselah, when he is dead it shall come. I imagine that when Enoch was not in sight, there were lots of people saying where is Enoch? Where is Enoch? I mean, where is Methuselah? Where is Methuselah? May be they called him Meth, where is Meth? When he is dead it shall come. It just may be you see that Enoch was sobered by the fact of the flood, and what it would bring and that caused him to rethink his life, and from that time on, he began to walk with the Lord.
At any rate it is true that he had an ordinary life for 65 years and then an extraordinary life for 300 years. In verse 22, it states Enoch walked with God 300 years after he became the father of Methuselah and he had other sons and daughters. The simple exercise of faith filled the invisible with the one great loving face of God.
Let me ask you to think for a moment about this word “walked.” Enoch walked with God, it does not say Enoch thought about God. I am sure he did. It does not say that Enoch speculated about God. It does not say that Enoch constructed a systematic theology about God. It does not even say he read about God. Not doubt, he did many of these things. It says of course that he walked with God. In other words there was beautiful combination of the theoretical with the practical. There was a beautiful combination of doctrine and practice.
In fact that is what Christian life is. It is the application of biblical doctrine. It is foolish for a person to think that he can please God, if he does not know biblical doctrine. And on the other hand it is foolish for a man who thinks that because he has gained some comprehension of biblical doctrine, that the comprehension itself, that alone is pleasing to God. There always must be the application of the biblical truth that we have. But all of our walking is to be in accordance with his word. That is why it is so important for us to know the Bible, to keep reading the Bible, to understand the word of God. We cannot possibly walk with God if we do not know holy Scripture.
We are fooling ourselves if we think we can walk with God and not be students of the word of God. We cannot do that. Others may think you are, but God knows the truth about you. Enoch walked with God because he knew God. He knew the truth about God and he was carrying out that truth. He walked with God that involves agreement. Nobody can walk with anyone else if they are not agreed.
Amos says how can two walk together except they be agreed? Everyone knows that in business, you cannot do business if you are not in harmony with the organization that you are associated with. Walking involves keeping step. It means that when God took a step, Enoch had to take a step. And that meant, when God did take a step, Enoch was not to take a step. It is possible to fail to step, when God steps and then it is possible to step, when God does not intend for you to step.
Peter illustrates that so beautifully. He steps when God did not step or when the soldiers came to take the Lord Jesus and Malchus was there, he pulled out his sword. Not being too handy with it, he attempted to split the helmet of the man right down the center at its weakest point and missed and caught the right ear of Malchus, the servant the High Priest. The Lord Jesus performed one of his miracles by putting the ear back on, but Peter had taken a step out of the will of God. And then later on when God would have him make a confession of his faith and fulfilling the prophecy that the Lord Jesus had given denies the Lord Jesus. If all the cock crows three times. See, it is possible to step in front of God, it is possible to lag behind, But Enoch walked with God. What a beautiful Christian life?
My dear Christian friend let me urge you to seek to walk with God. Not stepping before Him, not lagging behind Him, but following Him as He has set forth in Holy Scripture. And of course it means happiness. A man who walks with God is the happy man. Think of walking with someone for 300 years. I don’t know, but just a few people that I would want to walk more than 50 years with. One of them, I’ve almost walked 50 years with already. And I wouldn’t mind walking 300 with her. But there are very few people that I would want to walk 300 years with.
In fact there are some I wouldn’t want to walk three days with. Speaking humanly, you understand that would be a trial. But he walks with God for 300 years and he is just as happy at the end as he was at the beginning. Incidentally, he was safe to, fought a walk with God, means safety. He is under the shadow of the Almighty. Of course he is safe and it is the place of honor. “Them that honor me, I will honor”, God says. You young man who want to teach and preach the word of God. If you honor God and his word, God will honor you. There may be many who will seek to bring dishonor upon you, upset you, disturb you, deter you from the path of following God, but if you honor him, he will honor you. He will provide for you. He will also give you an audience to hear the things that He teaches you. It’s the place of honor. But you know this is true of every individual Christian, this is true on the simplest Christian, the youngest Christian, the one who honors God, God will honor him.
There is a beautiful little story of little girl who was in Sunday school and was told the story of Enoch, and when she came home her mother asked what she had been taught and she said, “Well, we had this wonderful story today about a man named Enoch. He used to go for long walks with God and one day they walked so far out from home that God said to him, ‘Enoch you are a long way from home, just come on home with me.’” [Laughter] So, that’s what we read, Enoch walked with God and he was not for God took him.
Concerning him, the writer of the Epistle of the Hebrews says, “By faith Enoch walked with God and he was not. God translated him. Enoch did not die.” What a wonderful reticence by the way in the biblical description. Can you not imagine what TV propaganda would have made of this? We would have days and days, we would be surfeited with all kinds of stories about the rapture of Enoch. But the Bible is so wonderfully reticence, an evidence of the truthfulness of its accounts, incidentally.
Now the chapter concludes with the family of Seth, from Methuselah to Noah and we will just say a word about it because our time is just about up. Methuselah was noted for two things, he was noted, because he was the grandfather of Noah, he is also noted for the fact that he lived longer than other man of whom we know, 969 years. Then Lamech. Lamech by the way is in the line of Adam, through Seth.
And there is a Lamech, you remember we studied him last weak. He was in the line of Cain. What a difference between the two Lamechs. One is the man who is the author of the arrogant boast full sword song in which he boasts that he will exercise vengeance on anyone who touches him. But here is a Lamech in the line of the line of faith, who thinks about the promised seed. We read concerning this Lamech. He call the name his son Noah, this one shall give us rest from our work and from the toil of our hands. He is thinking about the curse that has been placed upon them. The toil of our hands are rising from the ground, which the Lord has cursed. So he is a man who earns for the coming of the seed of the woman. A man of faith. And finally, Noah, in which the order of the sons is highlighted.
Now you know people are inclined to read the Book of Genesis after all it was many thousands of years ago, wasn’t it? And contend, Enoch was able to walk with God because he didn’t live in the 20th century. If he had lived in the 20th Century, he would not have been able to walk with God in the way in which he is presented in the Book of Genesis. In our day it’s more difficult to walk with God, how foolish.
Enoch did not live an easy life, in an easy age, that wasn’t the reason for his success. Listen to what Jude says in the New Testament and about these also Enoch in the seventh generation from Adam prophesied saying, “Behold the Lord came with many thousands of his holy ones to execute judgment upon all and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds, which they have done in an ungodly way and of all of the harsh things, which ungodly sinners have spoken against him. These are grumblers finding fault following their own lusts.”
Jude continues, it is evident from this that Jude in his day understood that his age was an ungodly age, four times he uses the adjective ungodly. He speaks about the ungodly deeds, he speaks about ungodly sinners, he talks about men who are ungodly. So Enoch — incidentally he was the seventh from Adam and obviously a public figure, his name is highlighted in the genealogy. He comes from the Promise Land and he was a family man, he was no hermit, he did not go out and sit on a rock and meditate on spiritual things. He lived right in the midst of that ungodly society of his day and it’s described here as a degenerate society, a disintegrating society, a violent society with a rudimentary knowledge of God, but it’s in that kind of society that Enoch walked with God.
My dear Christian friend, do not think for one moment that it is not possible for you today to walk with God. In fact, it is your calling and God what have you to walk with him today in the midst of this society in which we live. Of course Enoch’s life is an augury of the end of the reign of death, he was not for God, took him. By the way that Hebrew word laqach is used twice in the Old Testament of the taking of individuals to the presence of the Lord. It is almost as if building upon the story of Enoch the saints future is referred to as God taking us from this life to glory, because that is the hope of the Christian.
He will take us to glory and whether it is through death or through the rapture. It is a taking of God of His saints to glory. For that is ultimately what death is. Men have different ideas of death. Some people think of it as mysterious, inexplicable, some, that it is the one inevitable thing, others that it is sheer extinction. Still others, it is supreme terror. To some, it is release, others that it is an adventure. But for Christians it is entrance into the presence of God.
If you are here this morning and you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, death is the means by which most of you shall enter into the presence of the Lord, unless our Lord does not count. That’s what death is. In the meantime, walking with God is the pass time and the calling of Christian believers. If you are here this morning and you have never believed in the Lord Jesus, you don’t have this hope, it’s not for you. You have no hope. As a matter of fact you are without hope and without God in this world. You cannot walk with him, for the beginning of life must be the coming to the cross of the Lord Jesus where the blood was shed for sinners, where there must be repentance for remission of sins. May God through the Holy Spirit speak to your heart if you are outside of Christ and may you, through the Spirit, come to understand your sin and guilt and condemnation and may you look off by the leap of faith and see the Lord Jesus as the sacrifice for sin and may you flee, flee now through the cross of the Lord Jesus and receive as a gift eternal life then begins the walk with God.
And for you who are believers may God stare at you to fulfill your calling to walk with him, on into the presence of God. Enoch’s experience is the experience God would have us all have. May God help us to fulfill our calling. Let’s stand for the benediction.
[Prayer] Father we are so grateful to thee for these wonderful accounts from the inspired revelation. We know Lord they are given for a purpose to stare us. May the men of faith truly move us to a faith of a similar kind by the grace and power of our great God, we worship Thee.
As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ and those who belong to the seed and our Father, we do pray for any in this audience who may not know the Lord Jesus Christ. O God, help them to see their lost condition. The danger and peril of a life outside of Christ, bring them to know him, whom to know his life eternal, save them, deliver them. May grace, mercy and peace go with us.
For Jesus’ sake. Amen.