“Enoch walked with God” (Genesis 5:22). For this reason “he was commended as one who pleased God” (Hebrews 11:5). He stands out in his generation because he walked with God. His name appears in a context where every life ended in death. Except for Enoch’s.
I heard about a man who said to his wife, “I think I will go to church with you today.” This was surprising to her because he had never professed faith in Christ and he had previously shown little interest in spiritual things. She started to worry. What will the sermon be about? What scriptures will be read? Will the people be friendly to him?
When the scripture reading was announced, her heart sank. It was Genesis 5. The chapter contains a long list of ancient names. There is no gospel in that chapter. Only the refrain after each name, “and he died.” Surprisingly her husband continued to go to church with her.
After a few more weeks he professed his faith in Jesus and became a Christian. She asked him what it was that got him thinking about his need of salvation. He told her it was the reminder of the reality of death in the reading of Genesis 5.
Enoch appears in that chapter which describes the generations on earth before the great flood. Everyone in that chapter experienced death. But not Enoch. He is described as the man who walked with God and then one day, God miraculously took him to heaven.
The New Testament compares the Christian life to a walk. Christians are called to walk by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7), to walk in love (Ephesians 5:2), to walk in the light (1 John 1:7), and to walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:16). This is possible only if one has a relationship with God. Enoch was a man of faith. He trusted in God. Hebrews 11:5 says that he pleased God. He had a relationship with God.
The next verse tells us, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6). To seek God is to come to him on his terms and to trust in him. Enoch sought God and he was rewarded with a relationship.
The New Testament tells us that Enoch was a prophet who preached against ungodliness (Jude 14-15). We have no idea how Enoch prepared his sermons, or where he delivered them. But I believe nobody in his world would have an excuse for not believing in God. He was a faithful witness.
“By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away” (Hebrews 11:5). The account in Genesis says, “Enoch walked with God; then he was no more, because God took him away” (Genesis 5:24). One day Enoch went for his walk with God and he never came back home. God had taken him to heaven without his having to die.
This is a glorious picture of what will happen to the believers who are alive on earth when Jesus raptures his church. They will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air along with believers who will be raised from the dead. “And so we will be with the Lord forever” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).
Are you walking with God? The word “walk” is a metaphor for faithful Christian living, or living in fellowship with God. To have fellowship with God one must have a relationship with God. That is possible only through faith in Jesus Christ.
Are you looking forward to Christ’s return? Jesus is coming again. Are you ready to meet him? Remember that God rewards those who seek him by faith.
Pastor Randy Faulkner