Monday, February 27, 2023

Genesis Beginning Of Heroes 2: Noah The Hero Who Obeyed God Genesis 6-9

Genesis Beginning Of Heroes 2:
Noah The Hero Who Obeyed God - Genesis 6-9

 This is the second on our series on the first heroes of the Bible from a period we are calling the first age of mankind, the age before the flood, or if you really want to get fancy the antediluvian, meaning before the deluge. The Bible in listing the families and the descendants of Seth and Cain only say more than a few words except for the great heroes and the great villains of this age. Enoch, the seventh generation from Adam, was our first hero. The hero who walked with God. Then the Bible gives us not a few verses but four chapters about Noah, the hero who obeyed God. And it was a good thing he did otherwise you and I wouldn’t be here talking about him this morning.

The Wickedness of the World - Genesis 6:1-7

Genesis 6:1-7 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

Wickedness Winning

The line of Seth, here called the sons of God, begin to mix themselves with the line of Cain, called the daughters of men. The Seth’s righteous line that had not been absorbed and overwhelmed by wickedness had now begun to mix with and be absorbed by the descendants of the murderer, Cain.

We don’t know how long this took but I doubt it was sudden instead I’m sure it was gradual almost unnoticeable at first. In the immediate generations before Noah we have two outstanding individuals on each side of lines of mankind. Enoch and Lamech. Enoch is the seventh from Adam and he represents the apex of the sons of Seth. While on the other side we have Lamech, the seventh from Cain who seems to represent the apex of wickedness. Lamech is the first bigamist mentioned in the Bible and he takes such joy at having killed a man that he writes a poem,   

Genesis 4:23-24 And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice;
ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech:
For I have slain a man to my wounding,
And a young man to my hurt.
If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold,
Truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

It seems he’s saying he is greater than Cain because he killed this young man.

From our text it appears that the final trigger to God’s unleashing the greatest judgment known to the world at that time was the line of Seth failing.

In 6v3 “The LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.” In one hundred and twenty years the flood would come and man who is imbued with the spirit of God, will die because he is also a creature of flesh.

The narrative goes on, in Genesis 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast,

Let’s talk just a moment about this phrase, the sons of God. Some believe it describes the angels of God as mentioned in the book of Job. Others that this refers to the righteous line of Seth. The word “giant” in Hebrew is Nephilim and it literally means a bully or a tyrant, a giant. The simplest explanation for this phrase is that they are the sons of Seth and that some of their mixed descendants were both giants in stature and in reputation.

 They finally summation that God gives before He takes action is “the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

This causes God to “repent.” This word is Nāḥam. It describes the love of God that has suffered heart-rending disappointment. Literally, it speaks of taking a deep breath in extreme pain and this is what the Bible says, “it grieved Him at his heart.” He was not sorry He made a mistake, for God makes no mistakes, but He was sorrowful at the mistakes man had made and the sin that now overflowed and corrupted His creation.

Wickedness Winning Again

It is not hard to see the parallels between the age of Enoch and Noah and our own age. When we read, Genesis 6:5 “every imagination of the thoughts of (man’s) heart was only evil continually.” How many instances from just this past week spring to mind?

Let me share with you some headlines from my news feed.  Just listen to these headlines.

Doctor endorses idea of suicide through organ donation.

Florida physician allegedly called for the unvaccinated to be shot to death in a Nazi-style firing line

New Zealand virgin auctions herself for college tuition

This isn’t a headline but it was written in a homosexual newspaper, "We shall sodomize your sons, emblems of your feeble masculinity, of your shallow dreams and vulgar lies. We shall seduce them in your schools, in your dormitories, in your gymnasiums, in your locker rooms, in your sports arenas, in your seminaries, in your youth groups, ...wherever men are with men together. Your sons shall become our minions and do our bidding. They will be recast in our image. They will come to crave and adore us. All churches who condemn us will be closed. Our holy gods are handsome young men. ...We shall be victorious because we are fueled with the ferocious bitterness of the oppressed..." - Michael Swift - Boston Gay Community News - February 15-21, 1987

Pro-LGBT Publication Argues That ‘Queer’ Public Sex Should Be Permitted By Society 

June is now Gay Pride and History Month In the United States

2021 Poll: 39 per cent of 18-24 year olds now identify as LGBTQ.

50 percent of young adults aged twenty to forty cohabiting in 2010, living together in fornication rather than getting married.

Fewer Than Half of American Children Grow Up In Intact Families, meaning families that were never divorced.

More than half of the women who are murdered in the US are killed as a result of romantic partner violence.

2019 80 Year-Old Abortionist Has Killed Over 80,000 Babies in Abortions

2016 According to a majority of American adults (57%), knowing what is right or wrong is a matter of personal experience. This view is much more prevalent among younger generations than among older adults. Three-quarters of Millennials (74%) agree strongly or somewhat with the statement, “Whatever is right for your life or works best for you is the only truth you can know.”

Read Genesis 6:5 once more, “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

God saw and God acted in overwhelming judgment against the unbridled sin of the first age of mankind.

Now before we all go out in our backyard and start digging a bomb shelter in preparation for the outpouring of God’s wrath in our time, look at verse 8 of chapter 6.

The Grace of God – Genesis 6:8-9, 22

Genesis 6:8-9 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God 22 Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.

Grace Given

What always will be available from God in the midst of wickedness? Grace. God’s marvelous, unfathomable, undeniable grace. Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.

And in that grace we can see the character and the actions of the last hero of the 1st age of mankind.

We see three characteristics of Noah’s and then one all-important action that was the result of that life.

Genesis 6:9 Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.

Noah was a just man.

He was perfect in his generations, and like his great grandfather Enoch,

Noah walked with God

Then in Genesis 7:22 this is the result. Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he

These three traits, just, perfect and walking with God, describe a godly life. Such a life not unique to Noah, but because of the times in which he lived his life stands out. It shines like a beacon on a very dark night.

If we define these three characteristics we would say that Noah’s life was characterized by justice, purity and holiness.

The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, probably my favorite commentary, says this, “The word righteous, from Hebrew ṣâddı̂q, describes Noah’s character as it manifested itself in relation to other human beings. “Straightness” or “up-rightness” was evident in his behavior. All his conduct revealed this moral and ethical righteousness. Hebrew tāmı̂m, perfect, describes the perfected product of a wise builder; it is full, complete, and flawless. The statement, he walked with God, opens another area of thought. In walking with God, Noah had displayed a spirit, an attitude, and a character that made him accepted and approved for the most intimate spiritual relationship. He manifested qualities of soul that endeared him to the Lord. - Charles F. Pfeiffer, The Wycliffe Bible Commentary: Old Testament, (Chicago: Moody Press, 1962), Ge 6:9.

Noah was touched by God’s grace, he accepted the gift of that grace and it produced in him a life of justice, purity and holiness. Then when the time came for a hero to step forward the seed of grace, that had grown into a godly life produced the fruit of obedience.

God warns Noah what is coming, instructs him what to do and the Bible says in vs 6:22 Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.

Noah obeyed God, no matter the monumental, almost impossible task God had given him, no matter the time needed, no matter the sacrifice called for. Noah was a hero of faith and he simply obeyed the commands of his God.

Grace Growing

Noah is unique in his circumstances and the times in which he lived, but he is not unique in experiencing the gift of grace, nor I pray is he unique in the life that grace should produce.

God’s grace is not rare it is abundant, it is all around us. The word grace appears 69 times throughout the Bible. God’s grace is seen in the life we live, the families we raise, the rain that falls, the health we enjoy, the unseen but ever-present providence of God that applies to all mankind. That is what we could call general grace, the idea that the rain falls on the just and the unjust, but to Noah and I pray to us grace is much more than God’s goodness to all mankind.

God’s grace to us is not in the background but it is front and center in the lives of his children today as it was for Noah. John 1:16-17 “And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”

Grace to us is not the gentle sun shining upon the earth but is the glorious son of God, Jesus Christ shining in our hearts. And if we have experiences God’s grace then that grace should produce in us a life that is reflective of such a great gift.

Noah again is not unique. Our lives touched by grace should also be just, pure and holy.

And as we live that life of grace when we are commanded by God to act on His behalf, no matter how impossible it may appear to us, we will obey. We will obey because we have been changed by grace, matured by justice, purity and our walk with God and when God calls, then we will be ready.

Hebrews 5:8-9 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

What another great hero, Moses, told the children of the Lord before they took on the impossible task of conquering the Promised land, still applies to us. Deuteronomy 13:4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

We’ve got a lot to still cover so let’s move quickly to …

 The Source of Salvation – Genesis 7:1-10

Genesis 7:1 ​ And the LORD said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation.

Salvation Secured

This is familiar territory, so I won’t read about all the animals or the timelines of the flood. What I want you to notice here is the ark itself. God told Noah, “Come into the ark.”

God gave an invitation to salvation and Noah entered into that salvation. The ark is a type, a picture, a foreshadowing of God’s salvation through his son Jesus Christ. Just notice these parallels.

Salvation through Christ and the ark were both planned by God, not by humans.

There is only one way of salvation, Jesus Christ and there was only one door in the ark.

God invited Noah and his family into the ark  and we are invited to come to Christ.

The ark saved Noah and his family from judgment because they believed God’s promise, they put their faith in God’s salvation. Christ saves us from eternal judgment because we have put our faith in Him.

The ark endured the cataclysm of God’s judgment but kept Noah and his family safe. Jesus Christ went through the flood of suffering for us and came out in victory.

There are many other types but we just don’t have the time to explore them all. (Isn’t the Super Bowl today?) Here is the point of the foreshadowing of the ark, as Noah was saved by grace through faith in the ark, we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.

Safe in the Salvation of the Lord

The ark went through the most powerful flood of all time, not a gentle rising of the waters, but a rending of the fountains of the deep and a ripping of the windows of heaven. There would have been earthquakes, volcanoes in the deep and on land, lightning and thunder would have deafened the world itself and rain would fell for 40 days and nights, it never ceased to pour down in great sheets signifying the outpouring of God’s wrath.

Genesis 6:17 And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and everything that is in the earth shall die.

God’s wrath was poured out from above and pushed up from beneath and nothing, nothing would survive. And yet this one small ship, this raft of refugees, nothing but a “floating box” perhaps 600 feet long, 100 feet wide and 60 feet high, made of cypress wood and coated inside and out with pitch a natural tar, this speck survived. It survived not because Noah was a great planner, but because God was and is a great protector. The ark survived not because of Noah great skill but because of God’s great salvation. The ark survived not because of Noah’s goodness but because God’s grace.

What a powerful picture of salvation in Jesus Christ.

We are saved by grace: Ephesians 2:4-10 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

We come at the invitation of our Lord Matthew 11:28-30 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

We are safe and secure from the terrible wrath of God for all eternity. Romans 8:33-39 Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.


I’m so glad that Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord, but I am overjoyed that I found grace in the eyes of the Lord. I heard the Gospel, Jesus was lifted up. The Holy Spirit said, “Come” and I joyfully accepted the gift of salvation. Now I stand in that unshakeable, unbreakable, unending salvation knowing that whatever this age and the age to come may sweep over me, I am secure because like Noah in the ark, I am safe in my Lord Jesus Christ.

How safe are you this morning? You’ve heard the Gospel and the invitation. We’ve presented them from God’s word this morning. I know that is true but what only you can know is if you’ve entered in to that grace. If you’ve accepted the invitation to, “Come unto me.”

Let me also add this, if you have entered in, then know this above all other things in this world. You are now safe, nothing can take you from God. Nothing can deny His promises. Nothing can destroy the eternity that waits you with Him in heaven. The world is raging but it can’t come into the ark that is the power and protection of God, not now and not in eternity to come.



Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Genesis - The Beginning Of Heroes #1 Enoch: The Hero Who Walked With God


Genesis - The Beginning Of Heroes #1 Enoch: The Hero Who Walked With God

 I’m not sure if any of you are aware of this but I thought I should probably share with you that today is the Super Bowl. So, in honor of the Super Bowl being played today, I think we should have our first evening service in about 2 years. We’ll meet back here at 6pm and I promise to get you out of here in time to catch the post-game interviews. You don’t have to thank me I’m just trying to be a good pastor. Actually, that’s not going to happen. But what is going to happen is that I’m going to tell you a football joke.

 It’s a football joke that involves the seven dwarves. All of the Seven Dwarves were marching through the forest. Yes they were singing, “Hi, Ho. Hi, Ho.” But as they marched along they walked to close to the edge of a deep ravine and fell in. Fortunately, they were close to the house and Snow White heard them fall. (Can you see the football part of this joke yet?) Anyway, Snow White ran to the edge, peered over into steep gorge and called out to her fallen friends. “Are you okay?” From the depths of the deep crevasse, a voice called back. “The Dallas Cowboys will be in the Super Bowl next year.” Snow White was so relived, and she called back, “Dopey, is anyone else alive?”

 Years ago and I mean many, many years ago there were reasons to look up to athletes. I’m very grateful for those athletes today who are not ashamed of their testimony of their faith in Jesus Christ. Both quarterback for both teams are very open about their testimony of being believers in Jesus Christ. We need a lot more like them, but overall the age of the role-model athlete has gone the way of the Model-T Ford and the ice delivery man. But one place where we can still find role-models and heroes is in God’s Word. We are starting a short series from Genesis today entitled Genesis: The Beginning of Heroes. And our first hero is found in Genesis 5:22, Enoch the Hero who Walked With God.


Enoch’s Walk - Genesis 5:21-24

Genesis 5:21–24 21 And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah: 22 And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: 23 And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: 24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

Enoch Walked With God

How do should we understand this phrase, walked with God? We know that the Lord came and walked with Adam and Eve in the Garden before the time of Enoch. We know that the Lord from time to time, at special places in His plan and history, walked and talked with other heroes of the Bible. But I don’t think that that fully explains Enoch walk with God. I’m sure all those things happened but there was more because Enoch’s walk was directly related to God taking him.

In the genealogies from Adam to Jared we see this pattern of writing, Genesis 5:19-20 And Jared lived after he begat Enoch eight hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: And all the days of Jared were nine hundred sixty and two years: and he died. Jared lived had his first son and Jared died. We see this for all the scions of Seth.

But when we come to Enoch, that pattern is broken. It doesn’t simply say “Enoch lived” it says, “Enoch walked with God.” Even more dramatic the scriptures tell us that Enoch because of his walk with God did not die. Genesis 5:24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him. It was not the length of Enoch years that are notable, in fact his years on earth are the shortest of all the sons of Seth, only 365. His son Methuselah will live to be 969 years, but Enoch lived only a third of that time.

Instead, it is this phrase “Enoch walked with God.” It is only applied to Enoch and his great grandson Noah. It denotes the closest, most confidential, most personal relationship and communion with God. The phrase gives us a picture of Enoch walking side by side down a path with God. God, who in this case still appears visibly, converses and encourages Enoch, His friend and companion.

It is different from “walking before God” and “walking after God.” Both of these are found other place in the Bible, and they describe a pious, moral, blameless life under the law of God, but Enoch’s walk with God is not defined by the law but by his time and intimacy with God Himself.

This personal, intimate walk with God brought Enoch to his taking, his translation, his transfiguration. One of my commentaries puts it this way. “In Enoch, the seventh from Adam through Seth, godliness attained its highest point; whilst ungodliness culminated in Lamech, the seventh from Adam through Cain, who made his sword his god. Enoch, therefore, like Elijah, was taken away by God, and carried into the heavenly paradise, so that he did not see death; i.e., he was taken up from this temporal life and transfigured into life eternal, being exempted by God from the law of death” - Carl Friedrich Keil and Franz Delitzsch, Commentary on the Old Testament, (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1996), 1:79.

The taking of Enoch at such a young age compared to his ancestors and to his children happened in such a way that it was shocking. One of my resources states it this way, Enoch continually walked with God—then he was not there, because God took him.  - Messianic Jewish Family Bible Society, Holy Scriptures: Tree of Life Version, (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2015), Ge 5:24.

Enoch’s walk with God was so visible, so powerful, so well known to those around him that his taking was understood as being the reward of God.

It is not by accident that the writers of the New Testament picked up this phrase and applied it to a new relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

Walking With God

Paul says in Romans 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

This theme of walking with the Lord is detailed by Paul in the last few chapters of Ephesians. 

In Ephesians 4:1-6, Paul says of that we are to Walk Worthy, I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. Ephesians 4:1-6

In Ephesians 4:17-32 He tells the Ephesians and us to “Walk As New Creations”  henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:

We are to remember who we are in Christ. Ephesians 4:20-24 But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

He then gives them a description of what it means to walk as new in Christ. Ephesians 4:25-32 Put away lying, speak truth. Don’t let the sun set on you anger. Don’t compromise with the devil. Don’t steal anymore. Work with your hands. Don’t let communicate corruption. Instead speak good, edifying words that minister grace. Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit. Put away bitterness, and wrath, and anger, clamour, evil speaking along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake forgave you.

Nor is Paul done talking about our walk with God, iIn Ephesians 5:1-7 we are to Walk in Love Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; 2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.

The in Ephesians 5:8-14 Walk in Light, vss 8-11 “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

Finally, in Ephesians 5:15-21 He tells us to Walk in Wisdom, vss. 15-17 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

Walking With the Lord means being in accord with the Lord. You can’t walk with Him if you are not willing to go where He is going and walk the way He walks.

Be like Enoch walk with the Lord as you would walk with your dearest friend, talk with Him, share with Him, cry with Him and especially listen to Him and then do what He your most precious friend tells you to do.

Now it is interesting that Enoch has more written about him in the New Testament than in the Old Testament. And to fully gauge this hero we need to turn to …

Enoch’s Testimony - Hebrews 11:5-6

Hebrews 11:5-6 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Enoch Pleased God

Now Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit expands the heroes tale of Enoch. He tells us that Enoch was “translated.” He uses the Greek word, μετατίθημι, metatithēmi; which means to transfer, its literally means is to transport.

Paul says that before he was transported Enoch had this testimony. “He pleased God.” Then in the next phrase he explains what Enoch did that was pleasing to God. “For without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he that comes to God must believe.” Enoch had faith. Faith in God whom he walked with as a friend and who God, as a friend took Enoch to live with Himself in heaven. Isn’t that amazing? That is why it made such an indelible memory and impact upon those antediluvian, pre-flood people. He walked with God as a friend and had such faith in God that God one day snatched him up, as he did Elijah.

Pleasing God

I don’t need to remind you that the entire 11th chapter of Hebrews is all about faith. It is the Hall of Faithful Heroes. Enoch’s faith is singled out here as well but even thousands of years after it happened it was still such an amazing thing. Enoch pleased God because he had faith in God. That was his testimony, his faith was his statement of life.  

Now we could spend the rest of today and preach right on through the Super Bowl just talking about faith. It could be a very profitable day if we did, but ….. we won’t. Instead I just want to share a verse or two with you.

When Paul comes to the end of the 11th chapter of Hebrews he says this, Hebrews 11:39-40 And these all, (including Enoch) having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.

Wait, what is Paul saying? These great heroes of faith, these proven warriors of trusting God in all situations, didn’t receive the promise? Why would they not? Because God has provided some better thing for us, that they without us are not yet complete. The end of these stories of the heroes of faith is waiting to be written by us.

Paul says that these great examples of faith are waiting and they are waiting for us. Waiting for us to follow their examples and have the same kind of faith as Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sara, Isaac, Jacob and all the great heroes of Faith from the Old Testaments. We are called to be the heroes of faith in the New Testament.

Remember what Jesus said in Matthew 21:21? Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.

What is the most quoted verse in the New Testament from the Old? Habakkuk 2:4 “…the just shall live by faith.”

Pleasing God is having faith in God and if we have faith in God, faith in God’s Word, faith in God’s love, faith in God mercy and yes even faith in God’s judgment, then we will be the heroes of faith for our age.

There is one final word about Enoch that we will quickly cover, even though it is the most controversial. It is found in …

Enoch’s Message - Jude 1:14-15

And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.Enoch Spoke For God

Enoch Preached For God.

This passage is controversial because it references an apocryphal book, a book that was not actually written by Enoch and is not part of the Bible. There are myriad debates about this and we could go over them all and not finish before the kick-off, it wouldn’t be as profitable as discussing faith but it probably would be as long. But we’re not going to do that either.

Suffice it to say that whatever else the Book of Enoch says, Jude under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit says this part is true. Enoch was a preacher to the last age before the flood.

Probably like Noah, his great grandson and Lamech his grandson they lived as examples of faith and righteousness but they also spoke and preached as messengers for God.

Enoch preached, “Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all.

His grandson Lamech preached hope through the naming of his son, Noah. Genesis 5:29 he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD hath cursed.

Noah preached the loudest message of all back in Hebrews 11:7 we read Noah … prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world. Noah built a monument of faith that preached a message of repentance.

Proclaiming for God

Just like the Heroes of Faith in the Old Testament we also are called to sound the warning, preach the message and proclaim the Gospel. True heroes of God will never be silent about the Word of God. There are so many places we could go in the New Testament to be reminded, exhorted and commanded to go and preach. We could probable spend the rest of the day and preach right through the Super Bowl, but we won’t do that. Instead just listen again to the words of the Lord speaking to us His church in…

Matthew 28:18-20 All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

 Or Mark 16:15 Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Or Acts 1:8 ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

All of these share the same imperatives if not the same words. That imperative, that command is Go and preach the Gospel. Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech and Noah stood at the end of the first age of mankind, the last era before God destroyed the world with a flood. We stand at the end of the last age of mankind before Jesus returns and in His power and authority destroys the power and authority of all the nations and kingdoms of this earth.

Enoch preached and taught his family of God. They in turn preached when Enoch was taken by God, proof I’m sure his family would cite of a God in heaven who still walked with man on earth. Noah built an ark that was the last testimony of God’s mercy but also of God’s judgment.

We are called by our Lord to preach the gospel and teach our families that there will always be a righteous remnant to stand as a true testimony in wicked world. As Noah built the ark showing the world God’s present mercy and His coming judgment, we are to build our church that it would stand as a monument of God’s continuing grace but also of his coming wrath.

As incredible as it may seem, we are the Enochs and Noahs of our age, strengthened by our walk with God, to be able to give testimony of our faith in God and to stand in that faith proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the son of God.

Do you feel overwhelmed in the task? Well of course, it is overwhelming but we can and will do it if we like Enoch will walk with God. That is where it all began for Enoch and that is where is must begin for us.


A Story about a Funeral

Let me close with a story about a funeral I attended for my great aunt at the Methodist church in Cooper Texas. We grew up always calling her Nani Mom. Until I was 20 I thought that was here name. Its an east Texas thing. I’m still not sure but I think her actual name was Selma Cates, so we called her Nani Mom. In her later years, she had diabetes and had gone blind, spending her last days in the dark in a nursing home and in the hospital. She was a large lady with a big lap that as children we always were told, “Come sit in my lap and tell me how you are.” She was so very, very sweet and loving.

At her funeral her preacher told the story of Enoch this way. “The Bible tells us that Enoch walked with God as was not for God took him. I like to think that every day as Enoch walked with God, he walked longer and he walked further until one day as the time came for Enoch to go back home, God said, “Enoch, its closer to my home than it is to yours. Why don’t you come home with me? He then related that to my great aunt. “Sister Cates walked with God her whole life and recently as she walked with him she heard the Lord say, “You know today we’re closer to my home than to yours. It time you came home with me.” That’s a pretty good story for a Methodist. I’m sure he borrowed it from a Baptist.

Here is the point as if walk with God as His children, as His redeemed, one day on one of our walks we don’t know which on or when, but on one of those walks with the Lord we will hear Him say, “It’s closer to my home than it is to yours. Time for you to come home with me.”

Won’t that be the greatest walk any of us will ever take? To walk right out of this world and into the home of God in heaven. I pray you are walking with God this morning. I pray you know Jesus as friend and companion. I pray that when you take that last walk you will hear the voice of God telling you its time to come home.