9th January 2023
Read - Genesis 5:18-24 and Hebrews 11:5-6
Message Alan Burke
This week we focus on a man that we know very little about, in truth we know more about Scott’s relatives that he was telling us about last week in Glenarm and Harryville in Ballymena than we do about Enoch. Of course today we have things like church records, census records, you can even go yourself and spend like I have, a few days at PRONI working your way through their records. PRONI is the Public Records Office of Norther Ireland and it is free to access and use for anyone who is interested in doing some historical digging. What we have about Enoch you could fit on the back of a postage stamp yet what little we know about him is wonderful and it should lead our hearts to rejoice.
For Enoch had faith and although we are not given much detail about him and the life that he lived we should marvel! Yeah we may be able to trawl census information, church records, births deaths and marriage records but none of that will tell us the most important thing we should be asking about our own family, the question is did they have faith? And that is the question that matters for all of us, and well Enoch even though we know so little what matters is he had Faith.
It is to Genesis we turn to first for it helps us to see where Enoch fits into salvation history. There we have Adam, Seth, then Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared and Enoch. There is no mention of the faith Enoch’s father, grandfather etc in the book of Hebrews, we simply do not know if they had faith, but Genesis 6:5 helps us to understand more about the culture at that time, there we read; 5 The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. (Gen 6:5). From the fall there was a spiral, it wasn’t progression to godliness, but wickedness. Things were spiralling out of control because of sin and in the midst of it we are told of Enoch who was the son of Jared (18), and that he had brothers and sisters but he was a man who walked with God (v24). This is the bit that matters, that that this man Enoch who was seventh in the line from Adam ”walked with God”.
The book of Hebrews says it slightly differently, it tells us that Enoch was one who was commended as one who pleased God. Enoch walked with God, ie in his life he pleased God, it wasn’t that Enoch went on a hike around with the Lord God, no it was that in his life he pleased God, he sought to live in relationship with Him, he was one who had faith! We don’t know the ins and outs of Enoch’s walk with the Lord, what it looked like but there are some things that we can safely presume from the scripture of what walking with God involves. But before we do that I want to ask the question for us what does it mean at its most basic level to walk with God? It doesn’t mean getting the hiking boots out.
Well the imagery of Scripture is that to walk with someone, to walk with the Lord then there must be a relationship, there must be fellowship. Well for all of us, by our nature we are the enemies of God, we are not walking with the Lord, we are walking contrary to Him as Leviticus puts it (Lev 26:23-24). We cannot walk with the Lord if we are His enemies, if we haven’t been born again, what we need is to be reconciled to Him by faith, Hebrews 11:6 reminds us without faith it is impossible to please God. For all of us, to walk with God, to please God the thing that is essential is faith. It is impossible to please God any other way. Hebrews 11:6 goes on to remind us that “anyone who comes to Him (speaking of God) must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Let us be those who are earnestly seeking God and we will think more of what it is to earnestly seek God on Wednesday.
Q45 Which is the first commandment?
The first commandment is, Thou shalt have no other gods before me. (Exod. 20:3)