The Bible tells us that someday we will all give an account of ourselves to God.
Rom. 14:10 ¶ … For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. Rom. 14:11 For it is written, “AS I LIVE, SAYS THE LORD, EVERY KNEE SHALL BOW TO ME, AND EVERY TONGUE SHALL GIVE PRAISE TO GOD.” Rom. 14:12 So then each one of us will give an account of himself to God.
Do you know how to prepare for that moment? Will God be pleased with you? How do we know whether or not God will be pleased? Genesis 5 is a genealogy that gives us a little guidance on these questions. Amidst the names and numbers of the genealogy is a little clue about how to please God. The clue is from the life of Enoch, but before we learn about Enoch, we need to cover a little Hebrew grammar.
Genesis was originally written in Hebrew. Biblical Hebrew organizes text differently than English. In English we use space to organize text such as the space between words or the space between paragraphs. In Biblical Hebrew the authors of the Old Testament used letters to organize text. There was a letter to indicate a major break and a different letter to indicate a minor break. Modern English translations do not translate these breaks, but they were in the original Hebrew text, and in Genesis 5 the breaks help us understand how to be pleasing to God.
Below is the text of Genesis 5. I have added the major and minor breaks. As you read the text, notice two things. Notice that there is a minor break between each section, except for the section telling us about Enoch. There is a major break before and after that section. What does that tell us? Notice also that the text uses the word “lived” to describe the life of each descendant. However, once again the description of Enoch does not follow the pattern. It uses the word “walked”. What does the change in wording tell us?
Gen. 5:3 ¶ 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.
Gen. 5:4 Then the days of Adam after he became the father of Seth were eight hundred years, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:5 So all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years, and he died.
Gen. 5:6 ¶ Seth lived one hundred and five years, and became the father of Enosh.
Gen. 5:7 Then Seth lived eight hundred and seven years after he became the father of Enosh, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:8 So all the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years, and he died.
Gen. 5:9 ¶ Enosh lived ninety years, and became the father of Kenan.
Gen. 5:10 Then Enosh lived eight hundred and fifteen years after he became the father of Kenan, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:11 So all the days of Enosh were nine hundred and five years, and he died.
Gen. 5:12 ¶ Kenan lived seventy years, and became the father of Mahalalel.
Gen. 5:13 Then Kenan lived eight hundred and forty years after he became the father of Mahalalel, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:14 So all the days of Kenan were nine hundred and ten years, and he died.
Gen. 5:15 ¶ Mahalalel lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Jared.
Gen. 5:16 Then Mahalalel lived eight hundred and thirty years after he became the father of Jared, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:17 So all the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred and ninety-five years, and he died.
Gen. 5:18 ¶ Jared lived one hundred and sixty-two years, and became the father of Enoch.
Gen. 5:19 Then Jared lived eight hundred years after he became the father of Enoch, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:20 So all the days of Jared were nine hundred and sixty-two years, and he died.
Gen. 5:21 ¶ Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah.
Gen. 5:22 Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:23 So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years.
Gen. 5:24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
Gen. 5:25 ¶ Methuselah lived one hundred and eighty-seven years, and became the father of Lamech.
Gen. 5:26 Then Methuselah lived seven hundred and eighty-two years after he became the father of Lamech, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:27 So all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred and sixty-nine years, and he died.
Gen. 5:28 ¶ Lamech lived one hundred and eighty-two years, and became the father of a son.
Gen. 5:29 Now he called his name Noah, saying, “This one will give us rest from our work and from the toil of our hands arising from the ground which the LORD has cursed.”
Gen. 5:30 Then Lamech lived five hundred and ninety-five years after he became the father of Noah, and he had other sons and daughters.
Gen. 5:31 So all the days of Lamech were seven hundred and seventy-seven years, and he died.
Gen. 5:32 ¶ Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah became the father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
The author of Genesis put a major break before and after Enoch (there was a minor break between the other men) because the author of Genesis was trying to draw our attention to Enoch. Also, instead of saying that Enoch lived, the text tells us that Enoch walked with God. The author of Genesis is drawing our attention to the fact that Enoch did not live his life like other men; instead, Enoch differentiated himself in God’s eyes by walking with God.
How do we walk with God? How do we differentiate ourselves in God’s eyes the way Enoch did? Let’s answer that by thinking about the disciples of Jesus. Jesus walked around teaching and performing miracles. His disciples walked along with Him, spent time with Him, and absorbed His teaching as they went. The disciples of Jesus followed Jesus. The disciples went where Jesus went. The disciples did not ask Jesus to come along with them, they went along with Jesus. The disciples did not set the itinerary, Jesus did.
If we want to walk with God, we need to do what the disciples did. Instead of asking God to come with us, we need to go with Him. We need to read the Bible on a regular basis and absorb God’s teachings, wisdom, and philosophy. Instead of asking God to do what we want Him to do, we need to focus on helping God accomplish His objectives.
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The purpose of this website is to increase Biblical literacy and help people walk with God. Please pray that I will communicate Biblical truth clearly and accurately.